All Posts Tagged Tag: ‘Astronomy’

Asteroid 2014: Cosmic Monster Missed Earth This Morning

A couple million miles may not sound like much of a “close call” with an asteroid. But compare it to the vast and empty light years upon light years surrounding this oxygenated rock ball we ride around on in infinite space, and 1.6 million miles isn’t much wiggle room between us and a structure racing past at 27,000 miles per …

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Yet Another Early-Universe Galaxy Has Been Spotted

Astronomers this week revealed that yet another galaxy from the very early universe has been spotted. The galaxy, dubbed Abell2744_Y1, is estimated to have existed just 650 million years after the big bang, which took place 13.8 billion years ago. The object was spotted during a survey of the Abell 2744 galaxy cluster using the Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes. …

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“Wobbly” Planet Spotted in Binary Star System

NASA this week revealed that the Kepler Space Telescope has spotted a planet with a very erratic orbit. The planet, named Kepler-413b, orbits around a pair of stars and performs what astronomers are describing as a wobble as its spins. The planet’s binary system is located 2,300 light-years from our system and contains two dwarf stars, one orange and one …

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NASA Crowdsources WISE Data Mining

NASA this week announced a new website, DiskDetective.org. The website allows visitors to help NASA researchers cull through data to help uncover young systems that could one day spawn planets. “Through Disk Detective, volunteers will help the astronomical community discover new planetary nurseries that will become future targets for NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and its successor, the James Webb Space …

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Water Vapor Discovered on Dwarf Planet Ceres

Astronomers today announced that water vapor has been detected around Ceres. Ceres is the largest object in our solar system’s asteroid belt and has been classified as a dwarf planet, like Pluto. The discovery is the first time water vapor has been detected around an object in the asteroid belt. The findings, published in the journal Nature, could provide significant …

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New Planets Found Among Star Cluster

Astronomers this week have announced the discovery of three planets found within the Messier 67 star cluster. The finding is significant because planets have rarely found orbiting stars that are part of star clusters. The new research shows that planets may actually be just as common within star clusters as they are throughout the rest of the galaxy. “These new …

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Astronomers Spot Stars Soaring Out of the Galaxy

Astronomers this week revealed that they have discovered a new type of star traveling fast enough to leave the Milky Way galaxy. The stars, dubbed “hypervelocity stars,” are different than other stars found traveling at such speeds as they did not come from the center of the galaxy. “These new hypervelocity stars are very different from the ones that have …

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Massive Planet-Like Object Baffles Astronomers

Astronomers this week announced the discovery of an odd object orbiting a star located around 440 light years from our solar system. The object’s size and position is now giving scientists trouble in determining what exactly it is. The object, dubbed ROXs 42Bb, is around nine times the mass of Jupiter, just shy of the mark where astronomers would classify …

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Hubble Spots Cloudy Atmospheres on Two Nearby Exoplanets

On the eve of a new year, astronomers have just revealed that two nearby exoplanets are covered in an atmosphere thick with clouds. Two new papers, both to be published in the journal Nature, examine the planets GJ 436b and GJ 1214b. GJ 436b is located just 36 light-years from our solar system and is thought to be a “warm …

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China Moon Landing: Jade Rabbit Reaches Moon’s Surface

China made history on Saturday by successfully landing its first unmanned spacecraft on the moon. The Chang’e-3  reached the moon at about 9.12 p.m Saturday and delivered “Yutu”, nicknamed “Jade Rabbit”. Yutu is a solar powered, six-wheeled robotic rover, equipped with at least four cameras and a number of  mechanical devices for sampling and analyzing the moon’s surface. On Saturday, Zheng Yong-Chun, …

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Argon Hydride Detected in Crab Nebula

Researchers this week revealed that a rare molecule has been spotted in the Crab Nebula. The molecule, Argon Hydride, was found in data collected by the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Herschel Space Observatory, which ran out of coolant and ended its mission this past summer.. The finding has been published in the journal Science. Though argon on its own is …

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Water Vapor Detected on Jupiter’s Moon Europa

New research published this week in the journal Science Express has revealed that there is water vapor in the atmosphere of Jupiter‘s moon Europa. The vapor was detected by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope over the moon’s south pole. Though the water vapor has been detected on Europa, the exact cause of the vapor has yet to be determined. The report’s …

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