A team of astronomers has discovered the oldest known star in the Universe, which formed shortly after the Big Bang 13.7 billion years ago. The discovery has allowed astronomers for the first time to study the chemistry of the first stars, giving scientists a clearer idea of what the Universe was like in its infancy.
Celestial bodies size comparison
There’s a solar eclipse coming Sunday morning, and you can watch it live, right here.
Coldest Object in the Universe Captured in Radiant Photo With ALMA Telescope
The coldest object in the universe, known as the Boomerang Nebula, is one degree Kelvin, but in Fahrenheit, it would be minus 458.
This composite image represents the close environment of Beta Pictoris as seen in near infrared light. This very faint environment is revealed after a very careful subtraction of the much brighter stellar halo. The outer part of the image shows the reflected light on the dust disc, as observed in 1996 with the ADONIS instrument on ESO’s 3.6 m telescope; the inner part is the innermost part of the system, as seen at 3.6 microns with NACO on the Very Large Telescope. The newly detected source is more than 1000 times fainter than Beta Pictoris, aligned with the disc, at a projected distance of 8 times the Earth-Sun distance. This corresponds to 0.44 arcsecond on the sky, or the angle sustained by a one Euro coin seen at a distance of about 10 kilometres. Because the planet is still very young, it is still very hot, with a temperature around 1200 degrees Celsius. Both parts of the image were obtained on ESO telescopes equipped with adaptive optics.
Image: ESO/A.-M. Lagrange et al.
The Sun and planets to scale
NGC6537 Red Spider Nebula - Hubble reprocessed
Copyright: Carlos Milovic, HLA, NASA
Astronomers have snapped a picture of the smallest alien planet yet found around a star like our sun using a technique to photograph exoplanets directly from Earth. Bluer than expected, the gas planet would be the color of a “dark cherry blossom.”
'Comet Graveyard' Discovered By Astronomers In Colombia
The asteroid belt has long been thought a dull place. But in recent years, astronomers have spotted objects that occasionally spew small amounts of water vapor or dust—possibly because they’ve recently collided with something else. Now, scientists propose that most if not all of these objects may be shedding dust or water vapor because they’re the barely active remnants of comets that are now largely bereft of surface ice. These objects—a total of 11 bodies, which the researchers dub asteroidal belt comets (ABCs)—are either close to the end of cometary life as we know it, or they’ve recently been reactivated because gravitational perturbations of Jupiter (large planet located outside the asteroid belt in each image) have nudged the bodies into orbits that now pass closer to the sun. Along parts of those new paths, heat can penetrate more deeply and reach ice previously insulated by a surface layer of dust (yielding a solar system that today looks like the artist’s representation at top).
On average, the surface layers of dust on those objects average at least 1.8 meters thick, the researchers report in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. But in the solar system’s early days, before surface ice evaporated from those bodies, comets were both more numerous and more active (bottom), the researchers contend. If that’s true, nighttime skies of the distant past must have been spectacular indeed.
A first detailed analysis of the data provided by Curiosity rover’s samples of the Martian atmosphere suggests that the Red Planet eventually lost its atmosphere due to a mysterious catastrophic event.