Astronomy & Space - Astronomy news

Turning the moon into a cosmic ray detector

Scientists from the University of Southampton are to turn the Moon into a giant particle detector to help understand the origin of Ultra-High-Energy (UHE) cosmic rays - the most energetic particles in the ...

Sep 26, 2014
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Astronomical measurements must account for gravity

One of the consequences of general relativity is that light can be deflected by nearby masses. Mass curves space, and this curvature causes light to bend slightly. It was first observed during a total eclipse ...

Sep 25, 2014
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What is the geometry of the universe?

One of the big questions in cosmology regards the shape of the universe. "Shape" in this case is not the distribution of galaxies, but rather the shape of space and time itself. In general relativity, space ...

Sep 24, 2014
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The origin of Uranus and Neptune elucidated?

A team of French-American researchers led by the UTINAM Institute (CNRS/Université de Franche-Comté) has just proposed a solution to the problematic chemical composition of Uranus and Neptune, thus providing ...

Sep 24, 2014
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Image: NGC 6872 in the constellation of Pavo

This picture, taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2), shows a galaxy known as NGC 6872 in the constellation of Pavo (The Peacock). Its unusual shape is caused ...

Sep 23, 2014
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Measuring the proper motion of a galaxy

The motion of a star relative to us can be determined by measuring two quantities, radial motion and proper motion. Radial motion is the motion of a star along our line of sight. That is, motion directly ...

Sep 23, 2014
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Gravitational waves according to Planck

Scientists of the Planck collaboration, and in particular the Trieste team, have conducted a series of in-depth checks on the discovery recently publicized by the Antarctic Observatory, which announced last ...

Sep 22, 2014
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How gamma ray telescopes work

Yesterday I talked about the detection of gamma ray bursts, intense blasts of gamma rays that occasionally appear in distant galaxies. Gamma ray bursts were only detected when gamma ray satellites were put ...

Sep 22, 2014
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The frequency of high-energy gamma ray bursts

In the 1960s a series of satellites were built as part of Project Vela.  Project Vela was intended to detect violations of the 1963 ban on above ground testing of nuclear weapons.  The Vela satellites were ...

Sep 22, 2014
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