Small, ultrafaint "hobbit" galaxies more than 10,000 times smaller than the Milky Way, found hovering around the galaxy are comprised almost entirely of dark matter, a new study confirms according to a Space.com report by Ker Than. Until recently, only 11 such companion galaxies have been found.
It may be some four to five billion years off, but scientists are still trying to determine how Earth will cope when the inevitable end of our sun arrives. As such, an international team of astronomers have announced the discovery of a planet orbiting a star that has a similar rotation to Earth’s. The exciting news for them though is that the star it is orbiting is nearing the end of its life.
The object’s minimum mass is only about 7 times the mass of Jupiter. But instead of orbiting a normal star, this low-mass body orbits a rapidly spinning pulsar. It orbits the pulsar every 54.7 minutes at an average distance of only about 230,000 miles (slightly less than the Earth-Moon distance).
Astronomers have, for the first time, linked radio telescopes in Australia, China and Europe, effectively creating a telescope nearly as big as the Earth, which can generate images of cosmic radio sources with a hundred times better resolution than even the world’s best optical telescopes.
The model most widely accepted for the evolution of our universe, and the galaxies that populate it, is that they formed from smaller galaxies which eventually coalesced, to form larger combined galaxies. We have seen recently reports of one galaxy eating another, and for a day or so we were led to believe that our Solar System was indeed from another galaxy all together.
The Giant Magellan Telescope which will see first light in 2016, will dramatically expand the horizon of the defining event in modern astronomy, the discovery of the Universe beyond the Milky Way, and open a path to fundamental discoveries about the birth of stars and planetary systems, the mysteries of black holes and the genesis of galaxies.
Slated for completion at Carnegie's famed Las Campanas Observatory high in Chile's Atacama Desert, the GMT will have 10 times the resolution of the Hubble Space Telescope enabling a variety of new projects and observations. The 83-foot giant 25.4-meter telescope is as wide as an eight-story building is tall.
NASA and the European Southern Observatory are creating new space-exploration instruments that will provide astronomers with next-generation tools to explore faint light from the most ancient, distant objects of our Universe.
Radio astronomers at the University of Minnesota have found an enormous hole in the Universe, a "cold region" in the constellation Eridanus in the Southern Hemisphere, nearly a billion light-years across, empty of both normal matter such as stars, galaxies and gas, as well as the mysterious, unseen dark matter, a vast sea of invisible material that accounts for at least 95 percent of the mass of the Milky Way.
The current standard model for cosmology describes a universe that is 70 percent dark energy, 25 percent dark matter, and only 5 percent normal matter. Image, courtesy of Marusa Bradac, shows dark matter (blue) separated from luminous matter (red).
Earlier studies have shown holes, or voids, in the large-scale structure of the Universe, this new discovery dwarfs them all.
Popular mapping service Google Earth is launching a new feature called Sky, a "virtual telescope" that will allow millions of Internet users to become full-fledged stargazers. Supernovas and the most remote, ancient galaxies are now just a mouse click away through Sky in Google Earth.
One of the ever present problems of our technologically savvy day to day lives is the continual barrage of emails that make their way to our inboxes. Without a doubt, there are a few that slide in there that are actually wanted and of some value, but on the whole, we can generally expect out mail to be clogged with spam and forwards.
Of late, a recent “forward” has been circulating the internet and causing quite a stir. The email, known as either the "Hoax" or the "Two Moons email" claims that on the night of August the 27th, the Moon and the planet will appear in the sky side by side, and of the same size.