Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

A riddle for our time

One of the most remarkable successes of astrophysics in the last century was its discovery that the age of the universe as measured by its oldest stars was about the same as the age estimated in an entirely different way, ...

dateSep 12, 2016 in Astronomy
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Closest Look Ever at the Edge of a Black Hole

(PhysOrg.com) -- Astronomers have taken the closest look ever at the giant black hole in the center of the Milky Way. By combining telescopes in Hawaii, Arizona, and California, they detected structure at a tiny angular scale ...

dateSep 03, 2008 in Astronomy
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Is Earthly life premature from a cosmic perspective?

The universe is 13.8 billion years old, while our planet formed just 4.5 billion years ago. Some scientists think this time gap means that life on other planets could be billions of years older than ours. However, new theoretical ...

dateAug 01, 2016 in Astronomy
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Eight new planets found in 'Goldilocks' zone

Astronomers announced today that they have found eight new planets in the "Goldilocks" zone of their stars, orbiting at a distance where liquid water can exist on the planet's surface. This doubles the number of small planets ...

dateJan 06, 2015 in Astronomy
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Strange new 'species' of ultra-red galaxy discovered

In the distant reaches of the universe, almost 13 billion light-years from Earth, a strange species of galaxy lay hidden. Cloaked in dust and dimmed by the intervening distance, even the Hubble Space Telescope couldn't spy ...

dateDec 01, 2011 in Astronomy
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'Oumuamua one year later

One year ago this week astronomers discovered an unusual object moving through space not too far from the Earth's orbit. In just a few days they realized it could not be a normal asteroid or comet – its path showed that ...

dateOct 22, 2018 in Space Exploration
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Is dark matter made of primordial black holes?

Astronomers studying the motions of galaxies and the character of the cosmic microwave background radiation came to realize in the last century that most of the matter in the universe was not visible. About 84 percent of ...

dateApr 20, 2018 in Astronomy
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Possible signature of dark matter annihilation detected

We live in a dramatic epoch of astrophysics. Breakthrough discoveries like exoplanets, gravitational waves from merging black holes, or cosmic acceleration seem to arrive every decade, or even more often. But perhaps no discovery ...

dateMar 28, 2016 in Astronomy
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