Image: Hubble spies galactic traffic jam

The barred spiral galaxy NGC 3887, seen here as viewed by the Wide Field Camera 3 aboard the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, lies over 60 million light-years away from us in the southern constellation of Crater (the Cup). ...

Unraveling how spiderwebs absorb energy

Spiderwebs can withstand a predator's impact while still helping catch and detect small prey. Spiders architect these lightweight networks for strength and elasticity using different silks and geometric structures. Recently, ...

The skeleton of the Milky Way

Our home galaxy, the Milky Way, is a typical barred spiral galaxy, a flattened disk of about a hundred billion stars, gas, and dust that is roughly one hundred thousand light-years in diameter. The galactic disk is surrounded ...

Image: Hubble sees a "mess of stars"

Bursts of pink and red, dark lanes of mottled cosmic dust, and a bright scattering of stars—this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows part of a messy barred spiral galaxy known as NGC 428. It lies approximately 48 ...

Charting the Milky Way from the inside out

Imagine trying to create a map of your house while confined to only the living room. You might peek through the doors into other rooms or look for light spilling in through the windows. But, in the end, the walls and lack ...

Strange galaxy perplexes astronomers

With the help of citizen scientists, a team of astronomers has found an important new example of a very rare type of galaxy that may yield valuable insight on how galaxies developed in the early Universe. The new discovery ...

Golden Ratio offers unity of science

It is said to represent a "cosmic constant" found in the curvature of elephant tusks, the shape of a kudu's horn, the destructive beauty of Hurricane Katrina, and in the astronomical grandeur of how planets, moons, asteroids ...

Image: Spitzer at 10

The infrared observatory Spitzer has been at work for 10 years, revealing the cool dusty regions where stars and planets form, as well as shedding light on planets, exoplanets, stars and galaxies. Spitzer data have brought ...

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