December 9, 2016

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Kepler Reveals Solar-Like Oscillations in Other Stars

Asteroseismology of the Hyades with K2

Using the refurbished Kepler Space Telescope, astronomers studied solar-like oscillations in the Hyades open star cluster in Taurus. Our Sun vibrates due to pressure waves generated by turbulence in its upper layers (the layers dominated by convective gas motions). Helioseismology is the name given to the study of these oscillations, which can shed light on […]

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December 8, 2016

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Distant Galaxy SPT 0346-52 Churning Out Stars at Remarkable Rate

SPT 0346-52 Distant Galaxy Churning Out Stars at Remarkable Rate

Using several telescopes including Chandra, astronomers have shown that a galaxy in the early Universe called SPT0346-52 is undergoing an extraordinary burst of star formation. The absence of X-rays from Chandra shows that there is no actively growing, supermassive black hole in the center of the galaxy. This means that the rate amount of infrared […]

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December 8, 2016

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Common Mechanism May Be Responsible for the Spread of Alzheimer’s and CTE

Alzheimer’s and CTE May Spread Via a Common Mechanism

A newly published study from UC San Francisco reveals that a shared biological mechanism may drive the progression of both Alzheimer’s disease and chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Both Alzheimer’s and CTE are classified as “tauopathies,” a category of diseases characterized by the improper folding and clumping together of a protein called tau (rhymes with “how”) inside […]

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December 7, 2016

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New Study Shows Dark Matter May Be Smoother Than Expected

Dark Matter Smoother than Expected

Using data from the Kilo Degree Survey, a team of astronomers reveal that dark matter in the cosmic web, which accounts for about one-quarter of the content of the Universe, is less clumpy than we previously believed. Analysis of a giant new galaxy survey, made with ESO’s VLT Survey Telescope in Chile, suggests that dark […]

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December 7, 2016

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NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft Reveals First Images from New Orbit

Cassini Spacecraft Shows Saturn's Northern Hemisphere

New images from NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft from its new orbit of Saturn. NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has sent to Earth its first views of Saturn’s atmosphere since beginning the latest phase of its mission. The new images show scenes from high above Saturn’s northern hemisphere, including the planet’s intriguing hexagon-shaped jet stream. Cassini began its new […]

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December 7, 2016

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NASA Runs First-Ever Test of New “Propulsor” Jet Engine Tech

NASA Tests New Jet Engine Tech

Aerospace engineers believe they can reduce fuel consumption by embedding an aircraft’s engines into the boundary layer to ingesting the boundary layer air flow. Car, truck, train and aircraft manufacturers have made great strides in recent years to reduce fuel consumption, resulting in consumer savings and lower emissions. With NASA’s help, the aircraft industry is […]

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December 6, 2016

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Cassini Spacecraft Makes First Ring-Grazing Plunge

NASA's Cassini Makes First Ring-Grazing Plunge

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft made its first close dive past the outer edges of Saturn’s rings since beginning its penultimate mission phase on November 3o. Cassini crossed through the plane of Saturn’s rings on December 4 at 5:09 a.m. PST (8:09 a.m. EST) at a distance of approximately 57,000 miles (91,000 kilometers) above Saturn’s cloud tops. […]

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December 5, 2016

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UVES Instrument Views Fingerprint of the Early Universe

ESO Views Fingerprint of the Early Universe

The UVES instrument shows the light from quasar HE0940-1050 after it has traveled through the intergalactic medium. The most massive galaxies in the Universe host supermassive black holes at their centers. These truly colossal black holes chew up surrounding material at astonishing rates, expelling huge amounts of radiation as they do so and glowing as […]

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December 5, 2016

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‘NoBody’ – A Microprotein on a Mission

NoBody, A Microprotein on a Mission

Using a technique that has revealed more than 400 new proteins too tiny to be found by other means, scientists from Yale University have helped identify a novel, functional “microprotein” encoded in the human genome. One of those microproteins, called NoBody, is a molecular workhorse involved in sweeping out unneeded genetic material inside cells. Its […]

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December 5, 2016

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Hubble Reveals Dusty Filaments in NGC 4696

Hubble Sees Dusty Filaments in NGC 4696

New images from Hubble reveal the intricate structure of the galaxy NGC 4696 in greater detail than ever before. The elliptical galaxy is a beautiful cosmic oddity with a bright core wrapped in system of dark, swirling, thread-like filaments. NGC 4696 is a member of the Centaurus galaxy cluster, a swarm of hundreds of galaxies […]

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December 5, 2016

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Hubble Image of the Week – NGC 4388

Hubble Telescope Views NGC 4388

This newly released Hubbleimage show NGC 4388, which is located 60 million light-years away. The constellation of Virgo (The Virgin) is especially rich in galaxies, due in part to the presence of a massive and gravitationally-bound collection of over 1300 galaxies called the Virgo Cluster. One particular member of this cosmic community, NGC 4388, is […]

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December 2, 2016

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Mice Can Sense Oxygen Levels in the Environment Using Specialized Neurons

Mice Can Sense Oxygen Levels in the Environment

New research from the Max Planck Institute shows that mice can sense oxygen levels in the environment using specialized neurons in their noses that are present in the olfactory mucosa. The genome of mice harbors more than 1000 odorant receptor genes, which enable them to smell myriad odors in their surroundings. Researchers at the Max […]

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December 2, 2016

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AIM Spacecraft Observes Early Noctilucent Ice Clouds Over Antarctica

NASA Observes Early Noctilucent Ice Clouds Over Antarctica

Data from NASA’s Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere spacecraft shows the sky over Antarctica is glowing electric blue due to the start of noctilucent, or night-shining, cloud season in the Southern Hemisphere – and an early one at that. Noctilucent clouds are Earth’s highest clouds, sandwiched between Earth and space 50 miles above the […]

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December 2, 2016

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Astronomers Reveal Colliding Galaxy Clusters

Galaxy 3C438

A team of astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics have concluded that the hot gas in the cluster around galaxy 3C438 is the result of a collision between two clusters of galaxies. Galaxy clusters contain a few to thousands of galaxies and are the largest bound structures in the Universe. Most galaxies are members […]

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December 1, 2016

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Astronomers Reveal Potential Localized Dust Enrichment from Massive Star Clusters

ALMA Reveals Potential Localized Dust Enrichment from Massive Star Clusters in II Zw 40

New observations from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array are helping to confirm a long-standing theory that stars are copious producers of heavy elements. Galaxies are often thought of as sparkling with stars, but they also contain gas and dust. Now, a team led by UCLA astronomers has used new data to show that stars are […]

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December 1, 2016

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Astronomers Probe Mystery of Pluto’s Icy Heart

Researchers Probe Mystery of Pluto’s Icy Heart

New research looks to solve the many mysteries of Pluto’s icy heart-shaped feature. Was Pluto’s frozen heart formed in an ancient impact basin and was it once closer to the north pole? And does the icy heart conceal a subsurface ocean? Scientists are offering several new scenarios to explain the formation of Pluto’s frozen heart-shaped […]

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November 30, 2016

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New Study Links Zika and Glaucoma

Zika and Glaucoma Linked for First Time

A newly published study demonstrates for the first time that the Zika virus can cause glaucoma in infants who were exposed to the virus during gestation. Exposure to the Zika virus during pregnancy causes birth defects of the central nervous system, including microcephaly. Brazilian and Yale School of Public Health researchers had reported early during […]

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November 30, 2016

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VLT Observations Reveal First Signs of a Strange Quantum Effect

First Signs of Weird Quantum Property of Empty Space?

Using ESO’s Very Large Telescope, astronomers may have found the first observational indications of a strange quantum effect, first predicted in the 1930s. The polarization of the observed light suggests that the empty space around the neutron star is subject to a quantum effect known as vacuum birefringence. A team led by Roberto Mignani from […]

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