Related topics: galaxies

Magnetized gas flows feed a young star cluster

Observations of magnetic fields in interstellar clouds made of gas and dust indicate that these clouds are strongly magnetized, and that magnetic fields influence the formation of stars within them. A key observation is that ...

Astronomers find cosmic golden needle buried for two decades

Determined to find a needle in a cosmic haystack, a pair of astronomers time traveled through archives of old data from W. M. Keck Observatory on Mauankea in Hawaii and old X-ray data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory ...

TAMA300 blazes trail for improved gravitational wave astronomy

Researchers at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) have used the infrastructure of the former TAMA300 gravitational wave detector in Mitaka, Tokyo, to demonstrate a new technique to reduce quantum noise ...

Laser-based prototype probes cold atom dynamics

By tracking the motions of cold atom clouds, astronomers can learn much about the physical processes which play out in the depths of space. To make these measurements, researchers currently use instruments named 'cold atom ...

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Gravitational field

A gravitational field is a model used within physics to explain how gravity exists in the universe. In its original concept, gravity was a force between point masses. Following Newton, Laplace attempted to model gravity as some kind of radiation field or fluid, and since the 19th century explanations for gravity have usually been sought in terms of a field model, rather than a point attraction.

In a field model, rather than two particles attracting each other, the particles distort spacetime via their mass, and this distortion is what is perceived subjectively as a "force". In fact there is no force in such a model, rather matter is simply responding to the curvature of spacetime itself.

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