Two stars merged to form massive white dwarf

A massive white dwarf star with a bizarre carbon-rich atmosphere could be two white dwarfs merged together according to an international team led by University of Warwick astronomers, and only narrowly avoided destruction.

What makes a planet habitable

Which of Earth's features were essential for the origin and sustenance of life? And how do scientists identify those features on other worlds?

First carbon-rich exoplanet discovered

( -- A team led by a former postdoctoral researcher in MIT's Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences and the MIT Kavli Institute for Astrophysics, recently measured the first-ever planetary atmosphere ...

Super-Earth has an atmosphere, but is it steamy or gassy?

In December 2009, astronomers announced the discovery of a super-Earth known as GJ 1214b. At the time, they reported signs that the newfound world likely had a thick, gaseous atmosphere. Now, a team led by Jacob Bean (Harvard-Smithsonian ...

Unlocking the secrets of Earth's early atmosphere

Research partly conducted at the Advanced Photon Source helped scientists discover the composition of Earth's first atmosphere. What they found raises questions about the origin of life on Earth.

Atmospheric turbulence may promote cloud droplet formation

Clouds form when water vapor in moist packets of air condenses onto atmospheric aerosols, such as particles of dust. The transition from dry particle to liquid water droplet is known as activation. The threshold for activation ...

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