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ALMA Sees Signs of Windy Weather Around an Infant Solar System

September 23, 2014

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ALMA Data Suggest Evidence of a Possible Wind in Infant Solar System

Using ALMA data, astronomers have observed what may be the first-ever signs of windy weather around a T Tauri star. Astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have observed what may be the first-ever signs of windy weather around a T Tauri star, an infant analog of our own Sun. This may help explain […]

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Planetary Scientists Debate: Is Pluto a Planet?

September 23, 2014

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Is Pluto a Planet

The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics held a new debate to discuss the planetary status of Pluto. Cambridge, Massachusetts – What is a planet? For generations of kids the answer was easy. A big ball of rock or gas that orbited our Sun, and there were nine of them in our solar system. But then astronomers […]

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NASA Video Reveals the Difference Between Solar Flares and CMEs

September 23, 2014

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NASA Video Shows the Difference Between Flares and CMEs

This short NASA video highlights the differences between coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and solar flares. How do you tell the difference between a flare and a CME in NASA images? Flares look like bright flashes of light on the sun. Coronal mass ejections look like clouds zooming out into space. Image Credit: NASA/SDO/ESA/SOHO/Nune There are […]

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New Model Demonstrates That Stars Can Absorb Gravitational Ripples

September 22, 2014

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New Model Demonstrates That Stars Can Absorb Gravitational Ripples

A newly published study contradicts previous assumptions about the behavior of gravitational waves, demonstrating that stars can absorb the energy of gravitational waves. Scientists have shown how gravitational waves—invisible ripples in the fabric of space and time that propagate through the universe—might be “seen” by looking at the stars. The new model proposes that a […]

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MAVEN Spacecraft Successfully Enters Mars’ Orbit

September 22, 2014

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Animation Shows MAVEN Orbiting Mars

After a 10-month journey, NASA has confirmed that the MAVEN spacecraft has successfully entered Mars’ orbit. NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft successfully entered Mars’ orbit at 10:24 p.m. EDT Sunday, September 21, where it now will prepare to study the Red Planet’s upper atmosphere as never done before. MAVEN is the first […]

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New Hubblecast Video Explores the South Atlantic Anomaly

September 22, 2014

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Hubblecast 77 Video Hubble and the Bermuda Triangle of Space

This newly released six minute video details the mysterious region known as the South Atlantic Anomaly – an area where the Earth’s inner Van Allen radiation belt comes close to the Earth’s surface, increasing the flux of energetic particles and exposes orbiting satellites to higher-than-usual levels of radiation. Hubblecast 77: Hubble and the Bermuda Triangle […]

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Hubble Views Spiral Galaxy NGC 7793

September 22, 2014

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Hubble Image of Spiral Galaxy NGC 7793

This newly released Hubble image shows spiral galaxy NGC 7793. This new image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope shows NGC 7793, a spiral galaxy in the constellation of Sculptor some 13 million light-years away from Earth. NGC 7793 is one of the brightest galaxies in the Sculptor Group, and one of the closest groups […]

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Large Galaxies Gain Size by Merging with Smaller Neighbors

September 19, 2014

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Monster Galaxies Gain Size by Consuming Smaller Neighbors

A newly published study examined galaxy growth, revealing that massive galaxies are much less efficient at star formation than smaller galaxies and instead grew by merging other galaxies. Massive galaxies in the Universe have stopped making their own stars and are instead snacking on nearby galaxies, according to research by Australian scientists. Astronomers looked at […]

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Harvard Study Confirms Distance to the Pleiades Cluster

September 19, 2014

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VLBI Resolution of the Pleiades Distance Controversy

Astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics have completed a new distance measurement to the Pleiades Cluster, strengthening the existing astrophysical models and contradicting an earlier distance result that challenged those models. The Pleiades star cluster, a brilliant collection of several hundred stars visible in the winter sky near the constellation of Orion, has been […]

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NASA MAVEN Spacecraft Prepares for Mars Orbit-Insertion Maneuver

September 18, 2014

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MAVEN Ready for Mars Orbit Insertion

Launched last November, the MAVEN spacecraft is now preparing for an orbit-insertion maneuver that will allow the spacecraft to be pulled into an elliptical orbit of Mars with a period of 35 hours. NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft is nearing its scheduled September 21 insertion into Martian orbit after completing a 10-month […]

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New ScienceCast Video: A Colorful Lunar Eclipse

September 18, 2014

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ScienceCasts Video A Colorful Lunar Eclipse

This new four minute ScienceCast video details what you can expect to see during the total lunar eclipse that is set to occur on October 8, 2014. ScienceCasts: A Colorful Lunar Eclipse Mark your calendar: On October 8th, the Moon will pass through the shadow of Earth for a total lunar eclipse. Sky watchers in […]

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Hubble Reveals Smallest Known Galaxy with Supermassive Black Hole

September 17, 2014

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Black Hole Discovered in M60-UCD1

A team of researchers has discovered a supermassive black hole at the center of ultra-compact galaxy M60-UCD1, making this galaxy the smallest ever found to host a supermassive black hole. Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have found a monster lurking in a very unlikely place. New observations of the ultra-compact dwarf galaxy M60-UCD1 […]

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