Powerful blasts of radiation by young stars detected

Oct 19, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


Astronomers have observed a red dwarf star in a violent outburst, which was more powerful than ever detected from the sun. This powerful blast would likely prevent the habitability of any planets orbiting ... Read more

Largest galaxy proto-supercluster found

Oct 18, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


An international team of astronomers, using the VIMOS instrument of ESO’s Very Large Telescope, has found an enormous proto-supercluster forming in the early universe, 2.3 billion after the Big Bang... Read more

The electron is still round

Oct 18, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


Researchers have measured the shape of an electron’s charge with stunning precision, and found that it is perfectly spherical. This observation is in line with the so-called « Standard Model &r... Read more

NASA wants to send manned missions to Venus

Oct 17, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


Planet Venus is one of the most inhospitable places one could imagine, with temperatures on the surface of 460 degrees Celsius, a toxic atmosphere and crushing pressure. However, this doesn’t stop NA... Read more

Panspermia at galactic scale: could Milky Way spread life?

Oct 13, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


The Panspermia theory claims that life may be spread throughout the universe by astronomical objects, such as asteroids.

Now, a new study tried to understand if panspermia could be possible... Read more

The death of a star and the birth of a particular neutron star configuration

Oct 11, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


Astronomers have observed the death of a massive star that exploded in a rapidly faiding supernova. This observation gives rise to think that the dying star had an undetected companion, and that the explod... Read more

Planet size puts limits on its chemical composition

Oct 10, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


A computational analysis has revealed that the chemical composition and structure of exoplanets has a so-called “threshold radius”, that sets limits as to what a planet can be made off. For ins... Read more

Newly discovered star allows study of early universe

Oct 09, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


Astrophysicists discovered a rare star, very old and extremely low in metals. Called Pristine 221, it is among the 10 most metal-poor stars known to date in our Galaxy. Moreover, the star is almost carbon-... Read more

New clues about how Titan’s haze was formed

Oct 08, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


In a multidisciplinary approach including laboratory experiments, computer simulations and modeling, scientists found that the complex carbon structures found in the atmosphere of Saturn’s moon Titan... Read more

The two moons of Mars could be pieces of the planet itself

Oct 05, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


A new study about the origin of the two Martian moons contradicts previous long-lasting theories claiming that Phobos and Deimos, were asteroids captured in Mars’ gravitational pull.

A... Read more

Evidence for a moon outside our solar system

Oct 04, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


For the first time, astronomers have obtained compelling evidence for the existence of an “exomoon”, a moon outside our solar system. It is orbiting the planet Keppler 1625b, and is unusual bec... Read more

The night sky is glowing, but you cannot see it

Oct 02, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


With the aid of the MUSE spectrograph on ESO’s Very Large Telescope, astronomers have observed abundant Lyman-alpha emission (a spectral line of hydrogen) around distant galaxies. This observation wa... Read more

Researchers create detailed map of dark matter in the universe

Sep 30, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


Using a cosmic phenomenon called gravitational lensing, scientists have created a detailed 3D map of the distribution of the elusive dark matter. This allows scientists to see where the dark energy acts in... Read more

Surprise: neutron star with strong magnetic field launches radio jets

Sep 27, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


Astronomers have detected radio jets coming from a neutron star with a strong magnetic field. Neutron stars are formed when a massive star runs out of energy and develops supernova that creates a strong ma... Read more

New study explains how the Martian moon Phobos was formed

Sep 25, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


By comparing mid-infrared spectra from Phobos (that had been collected already in 1998 by the Mars Global Surveyor) with those of an asteroid found near Tagish Lake in British Columbia, scientists believe ... Read more

Milky Way was shaken by near-collision 500 million years ago and is still vibrating

Sep 20, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


The Milky Way has been shaken by the Sagittarius dwarf galaxy that came passing buy some 500 million years ago. Research carried out with the European Gaia satellite revealed that this near-collision has c... Read more

A highly habitable exoplanet in our neighbourhood

Sep 13, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


We hear about new exoplanets being discovered almost daily, but how habitable are they after all? Using computer models similar to those used to study climate change on Earth, researchers looked at the hab... Read more

Evidence for very early migration of solar system planets

Sep 12, 2018 Erwin van den Burg


By studying a pair of asteroids, astronomers have been able to illuminate the history of our solar system. It turns out that there has been a period of instability, involving the giant planets Jupiter, Sat... Read more

The mystery of ‘lunar swirls’

Sep 11, 2018 Alexandru Ciobanu


Lunar swirls are features on the surface of the moon, not found on any other body in our solar system, whose origin is not completely understood. A new theory about how they formed was developed by a team ... Read more

Pluto should be back as a planet

Sep 10, 2018 Kshitij Jadhav


Pluto lost its planet status in 2006, since a group of astronomy experts, defined a planet as a body, which clears its orbit i.e. be the largest gravitational force in its orbit. However, since Neptune&rsq... Read more