Exotic Binary White Dwarf-Red Dwarf Star System Discovered --"Its True Nature Was Not Suspected"

 

 

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Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, along with other telescopes on the ground and in space, have discovered a new type of exotic binary star: in the system AR Scorpii a rapidly spinning white dwarf star is powering electrons up to almost the speed of light. These high energy particles release blasts of radiation that lash the companion red dwarf star, and cause the entire system to pulse dramatically every 1.97 minutes with radiation ranging from the ultraviolet to radio.

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"Similar Event Within 100 Light Years of Earth Would Be Catastrophic" --Astronomers Observe Explosion 20 Times Brighter Than All the Stars in the Milky Way

 

 

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For most of 2016, astronomers have been viewing a ball of hot gas billions of light years away that is radiating the energy of hundreds of billions of suns. At its heart is an object a little larger than 10 miles across. And astronomers are not entirely sure what it is. If, as they suspect, the gas ball is the result of a supernova, then it’s the most powerful supernova ever seen.

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Ceres' Missing Craters --"A Big Red Flag that Something had Happened"

 

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When NASA's Dawn spacecraft arrived to orbit the dwarf planet Ceres in March 2015, mission scientists expected to find a heavily cratered body generally resembling the protoplanet Vesta, Dawn's previous port of call. Instead, as the spacecraft drew near to Ceres, a somewhat different picture began to emerge: Something has happened to Ceres to remove its biggest impact basins.

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China's 'Brain Project' --Ignores Stephen Hawking's Warning That "Evolution of Artificial intelligence Could Spell the End of the Human Race"

 

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This past March, Robin Li Yanhong, the founder and chief executive of China's Google, the online search giant Baidu, announced that he is looking to the nation's military to support the China Brain Project to make the mainland the world leader in developing artificial intelligence (AI) systems. It will be a massive, "state-level" initiative that could be comparable to how the Apollo space program to land the first humans on the moon in 1969.

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Ancient Eye in the Sky

 

 

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Light from a distant galaxy can be strongly bent by the gravitational influence of a foreground galaxy, an effect called strong gravitational lensing. Normally a single galaxy is lensed at a time. The same foreground galaxy can - in theory - simultaneously lens multiple background galaxies. Although extremely rare, such a lens system offers a unique opportunity to probe the fundamental physics of galaxies and add to our understanding of cosmology. One such lens system has recently been discovered and the discovery was made not in an astronomer's office, but in a classroom. It has been dubbed the Eye of Horus, and this ancient eye in the sky will help us understand the history of the universe.

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Our Solar System's Orbit Through Milky Way's Mysterious Disk "Could Dislodge Objects from the Oort Belt and Send Them Hurtling Toward Earth"

 

 

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If the solar system, as it orbited the center of the galaxy, were to move through the Milky Way's dark-matter disk, Harvard physicists theorize that the gravitational effects from the dark matter might be enough to dislodge comets and other objects from what’s known as the Oort Cloud and send them hurtling toward Earth. Their theory suggests that those oscillations occur approximately every 32-35 million years, a figure that is on par with evidence collected from impact craters suggesting that increases in meteor strikes occur over similar periods.

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The Milky Way's Massive Spinning Halo --New Insights

 

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Astronomers at the University of Michigan discovered for the first time that the hot gas in the halo of the Milky Way galaxy is spinning in the same direction and at comparable speed as the galaxy's disk, which contains our stars, planets, gas, and dust. This new knowledge sheds light on how individual atoms have assembled into stars, planets, and galaxies like our own, and what the future holds for these galaxies.

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"Alien Nightmare Raining Liquid Iron and Glass" --Hubble Space Telescope's 1st Direct Image of an Exoplanet

 

 

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Using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers at the University of Arizona captured the first direct, time-resolved images of an exoplanet, a young, gaseous exoplanet known as 2M1207b, shown above, located some 160 light-years from Earth. The planet is four times the mass of Jupiter and orbits a failed star, known to astronomers as a brown dwarf. And while our solar system is 4.5 billion years in the making, 2M1207b is a mere ten million years old. Its days are short--less than 11 hours--and its temperature is hot--a blistering 2,600 degrees Fahrenheit. Its rain showers arrive in the form of liquid iron and glass.

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CERN's Large-Hadron-Collider Discovery of the Higgs Boson --"Points to an Unstable, Collapsing Universe"

 

 

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Are we facing imminent doom? Will the universe collapse? That disparity between theory and observation indicates the Standard Model theory of a constantly expanding universe has been outpaced by new measurements of the Higgs and top quark. A stable universe is one in a low energy state where particles and forces interact and behave according to theoretical predictions forever. That’s in contrast to metastable, or unstable, meaning a higher energy state in which things eventually change, or change suddenly and unpredictably, and that could result in the universe collapsing. The Higgs and top quark are the two most important parameters for determining an answer to that question. Recent measurements of the Higgs and top quark indicate they describe a universe that is not stable at all energies.

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NASA Kepler Mission--"Enormous Solar Flares Sparked Creation of DNA Molecules Necessary for Life on Earth"

 

 

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NASA’s Kepler Mission found stars that resemble our sun about a few million years after its birth. The Kepler data showed many examples of what are called “superflares” – enormous explosions so rare today that we only experience them once every 100 years or so. Yet the Kepler data also show these youngsters producing as many as ten superflares a day.

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