News Releases

bulletWhen galaxies switch off: Some galaxies hit a point in their lives when their star formation is snuffed out, and they become "quenched". Quenched galaxies in the distant past appear to be much smaller than the quenched galaxies in the Universe today. This has always puzzled astronomers — how can these galaxies grow if they are no longer forming stars? A team of astronomers has now used a huge set of Hubble observations to give a surprisingly simple answer to this long-standing cosmic riddle.
Read more... 08-01-13

bulletNational Museum of African Art Presents “African Cosmos: Stellar Arts” “African Cosmos: Stellar Arts” will be on view at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art from June 20 through Dec. 9. This is the first major exhibition exploring the historical legacy of African cultural astronomy and its intersection with traditional and contemporary African arts. The exhibition of some 100 objects considers how the sun, moon and stars and celestial phenomena such as lightning and rainbows serve as sources of inspiration in the creation of African arts from ancient times to the present. Far from abstract concepts, African notions of the universe are intensely personal and place human beings in relationships with earth and sky and with the sun, moon and stars.
Read more... 05-30-12

bulletDark Matter Core Defies Explanation Astronomers using data from NASA's Hubble Telescope have observed what appears to be a clump of dark matter left behind from a wreck between massive clusters of galaxies. The result could challenge current theories about dark matter that predict galaxies should be anchored to the invisible substance even during the shock of a collision.
Read more... 03-02-12

bulletDark and bright: ESA chooses next two science missions The powerful influence of the Sun and the nature of the mysterious 'dark energy' motivate ESA’s next two science missions. Solar Orbiter and Euclid were selected today by ESA's Science Programme Committee for implementation, with launches planned for 2017 and 2019.
Read more... 10-04-11

bulletGalaxy Metropolis found in Distant Universe Astronomers have uncovered a burgeoning galactic metropolis, the most distant known in the early universe. This ancient collection of galaxies presumably grew into a modern galaxy cluster similar to the massive ones seen today.
Read more... 01-12-11

bulletRare 'Star-making Machine' Found in Distant Universe Astronomers have uncovered an extreme stellar machine -- a galaxy in the very remote universe pumping out stars at a surprising rate of up to 4,000 per year. In comparison, our own Milky Way galaxy turns out an average of just 10 stars per year.
Read more... 07-10-08

bulletCreations from the cosmos Artist Karel Nel works with astronomers from COSMOS, the global Cosmic Evolution Survey that is mapping galaxies and dark matter.
Read more... 10-01-08

bulletCaltech and Berkeley Astronomers Identifya New Class of Cosmic Explosions Astronomers are announcing today the discovery of a new class of stellar explosions. The finding is based on observations of a flash seen in the Virgo cluster in a galaxy known as Messier 85. According to Shrinivas R. Kulkarni, the team leader announcing the discovery of M85OT2006-1, the event is thought to have resulted from the merger of two ordinary stars 49 million years ago.
Read more... 09-02-08

bulletDark Matter Mystery Deepens in Cosmic "Train Wreck" Astronomers have discovered a chaotic scene unlike any witnessed before in a cosmic "train wreck" between giant galaxy clusters. NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and optical telescopes revealed a dark matter core that was mostly devoid of galaxies, which may pose problems for current theories of dark matter behavior.
Read more... 08-16-07

bulletNew 3-D Map of Dark Matter Reveals Cosmic ScaffoldingAn international team of astronomers has created a comprehensive three-dimensional map that offers a first look at the weblike large-scale distribution of dark matter in the universe. Dark matter is an invisible form of matter that accounts for most of the universe's mass, but that so far has eluded direct detection, or even a definitive explanation for its makeup.
Read more... 01-07-07

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