Hubble uncovers concentration of small black holes

Globular clusters are extremely dense stellar systems, in which stars are packed closely together. They are also typically very old—the globular cluster that is the focus of this study, NGC 6397, is almost as old as the ...

Stellar explosion in Earth's proximity

When the brightness of the star Betelgeuse dropped dramatically a few months ago, some observers suspected an impending supernova—a stellar explosion that could also cause damage on Earth. While Betelgeuse has returned ...

Cosmic X-rays reveal a distinct signature of black holes

An international team of astrophysicists has found distinctive signatures of black hole event horizons, unmistakably separating them from neutron stars, which are objects comparable to black holes in mass and size but confined ...

How planetary nebulae get their shapes

About 7.5 billion years from now, our sun will have converted most of its hydrogen fuel into helium through fusion, and then burned most of that helium into carbon and oxygen. It will have swollen to a size large enough to ...

Astronomers capture stellar winds in unprecedented detail

Astronomers have presented an explanation for the shapes of planetary nebulae. The discovery is based on a set of observations of stellar winds around aging stars. Contrary to common consensus, the team found that stellar ...

Dying stars breathe life into Earth: study

As dying stars take their final few breaths of life, they gently sprinkle their ashes into the cosmos through the magnificent planetary nebulae. These ashes, spread via stellar winds, are enriched with many different chemical ...

Star-forming region IRAS 12272-6240 probed in infrared

Astronomers have conducted spectroscopic observations of a star-forming region known as IRAS 12272-6240. Results of this observational campaign shed more light on the nature of this massive and complex region. The study was ...

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