Astrophysics News

A New Supernova Model Challenges the Predominant One

August 20, 2014

0 Comments

New Observations of the Type Ia SN 2014J in Galaxy M82

A newly published study from the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalusia discards possibility that type Ia supernovae might stem from explosions of white dwarfs nourished by normal stars. Were these conclusions to become generalized, type Ia supernovae might no longer serve as “standard candles” to measure astronomical distances. Type Ia supernovae happen when a white […]

Continue reading...

New ScienceCasts Video Explores How Exoplanets Are Measured with Remarkable Precision

August 19, 2014

0 Comments

New ScienceCasts Video Sizing up an Exoplanet

This new four minute ScienceCasts video examines how researchers are beginning to measure exoplanets with extraordinary precision. ScienceCasts: Sizing up an Exoplanet: Astronomers are not only discovering planets around distant suns, they are also starting to measure those worlds with astonishing precision. The diameter of a super-Earth named Kepler 93B is now known to within […]

Continue reading...

RXTE Satellite Uncovers the Rhythm of an Unusual Black Hole

August 19, 2014

0 Comments

NASAs RXTE Satellite Uncovers the Rhythm of an Unusual Black Hole

A team of astronomers has uncovered rhythmic pulsations from a rare breed of black hole in archival data from NASA’s Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer satellite. The signals provide compelling evidence that the object, known as M82 X-1, is one of only a few midsize black holes known. Explore M82 X-1 and learn more about how […]

Continue reading...

Astronomers Accurately Measure a Black Hole in Galaxy M82

August 18, 2014

0 Comments

Astronomers Accurately Measure a Black Hole that is 400 Times the Mass of Our Sun

A team of astronomers from the University of Maryland has accurately measured a black hole in galaxy M82, revealing that is about 400 times the mass of our sun. The universe has so many black holes that it’s impossible to count them all. There may be 100 million of these intriguing astral objects in our […]

Continue reading...

Higgs Boson May Explain the Earliest Expansion of the Universe

August 15, 2014

2 Comments

Higgs Versus the Big Bang

In a newly published study, physicists propose that the Higgs boson, which was recently confirmed to be the origin of mass, may also be responsible for the mode of inflation and shape of the Universe shortly after the Big Bang. Fedor Bezrukov from the RIKEN–BNL Research Center and Mikhail Shaposhnikov from the Swiss Federal Institute […]

Continue reading...

Grains Captured by NASA’s Stardust Spacecraft Are Likely from Interstellar Space

August 15, 2014

0 Comments

Grains Captured by NASAs Stardust Are Likely Visitors from Interstellar Space

A newly published study reveals that seven tiny grains of dust captured by NASA’s Stardust Spacecraft probably came from outside our solar system, perhaps created in a supernova explosion millions of years ago and altered by eons of exposure to the extremes of space. Berkeley – Since 2006, when NASA’s Stardust spacecraft delivered its aerogel […]

Continue reading...

Astronomers Produce New Milky Way Maps, Should Help Solve Interstellar Material Mystery

August 15, 2014

0 Comments

New Milky Way Maps May Help Solve Interstellar Material Mystery

An international team of researchers has produced new maps of the material located between the stars in the Milky Way, moving astronomers closer to solving a stubborn interstellar mystery. An international team of sky scholars, including a key researcher from Johns Hopkins, has produced new maps of the material located between the stars in the […]

Continue reading...

Chandra Helps to Determine What Caused Supernova SN2014J to Explode

August 14, 2014

0 Comments

Chandra Helps Determine What Caused SN2014J to Explode

Scientists are using Chandra data to help determine what caused the Type Ia supernova SN 2014J to explode. New data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory has provided stringent constraints on the environment around one of the closest supernovas discovered in decades. The Chandra results provide insight into possible cause of the explosion. On January 21, […]

Continue reading...

Interstellar Molecules May Be Silicon-Capped Hydrocarbons

August 14, 2014

0 Comments

Mysterious Molecules in Space May Be Silicon Capped Hydrocarbons

New research from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics suggests that interstellar molecules may be silicon-capped hydrocarbons like SiC3H, SiC4H and SiC5H. Over the vast, empty reaches of interstellar space, countless small molecules tumble quietly though the cold vacuum. Forged in the fusion furnaces of ancient stars and ejected into space when those stars exploded, these […]

Continue reading...

NuSTAR Sees Rare Event Near Supermassive Black Hole Markarian 335

August 13, 2014

0 Comments

NuSTAR Sees Rare Blurring of Black Hole Light

NuSTAR observations reveal X-ray light streaming from regions near supermassive black hole Markarian 335. NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) has captured an extreme and rare event in the regions immediately surrounding a supermassive black hole. A compact source of X-rays that sits near the black hole, called the corona, has moved closer to the […]

Continue reading...

Early Quasars Got a “Super Boost” from Star Clusters

August 12, 2014

0 Comments

Analysis Shows That Early Quasars Got a Super Boost from Large Reservoirs of Gas

New research form Yale University and the Weizmann Institute shows that early quasars took in a “super boost,” feasting from large reservoirs of gas that were part of early star clusters. The universe’s oldest, brightest beacons may have gorged themselves in the dense, cold, gas flows of the early cosmos — creating a kind of […]

Continue reading...

Scientists Detect a Possible Signal from Dark Matter

August 11, 2014

3 Comments

Researchers Detect a Possible Sign of Dark Matter

Using data from the Chandra X-ray Observatory, astrophysicists may have detected an emission line from a form of dark matter, the sterile neutrino, in the spectrum of galaxy clusters. Galaxies are often found in groups or clusters, the largest known aggregations of matter and dark matter. The Milky Way, for example, is a member of […]

Continue reading...