Why would this cluster of galaxy punch a hole in the cosmic microwave background (CMB)? First, the famous CMB was created by cooling gas in the early universe and flies right through most gas and dust in the universe. It is all around us. Large clusters of galaxies have enough gravity to contain very hot gas -- gas hot enough to up-scatter microwave photons into light of significantly higher energy, thereby creating a hole in CMB maps.
This Sunyaev–Zel'dovich (SZ) effect has been used for [...]
Astronaut Shane Kimbrough of NASA and cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Andrey Borisenko of Roscosmos undocked from the International Space Station at 3:57 a.m. EDT to begin their journey home.
Ryzhikov, the Soyuz commander, is at the controls of the Soyuz MS-02 spacecraft. Borisenko is seated in the left seat of the Soyuz descent module and Kimbrough is in the right seat.
The crew is scheduled to land at 7:21 a.m. southeast of Dzhezkazgan, Kazakhstan.
As the Soyuz MS-02 undocked, Expediti [...]
The Space Show, hosted by David Livingston at www.TheSpaceShow.com, will have the following guests this week:
1. Monday, April 10, 2017, 2-3:30 PM PDT (21-22:30 GMT)
Derek Webber's new book "No Bucks, No Buck Rogers: Creating the Business of Commercial Space".
Derek Webber is Developer of the “Gateway Earth” space policy initiative, which is an architecture using space tourism revenues to partially fund further exploration and development of the solar system. The approach relies [...]
Comet Hale-Bopp, the Great Comet of 1997, became much brighter than any surrounding stars. It was seen even over bright city lights. Away from city lights, however, it put on quite a spectacular show. Here Comet Hale-Bopp was photographed above Val Parola Pass in the Dolomite mountains surrounding Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy. Comet Hale-Bopp's blue ion tail, consisting of ions from the comet's nucleus, is pushed out by the solar wind.
The white dust tail is composed of larger particles of dust [...]
Like a ship plowing through cosmic seas, runaway star Zeta Ophiuchi produces the arcing interstellar bow wave or bow shock seen in this stunning infrared portrait. In the false-color view, bluish Zeta Oph, a star about 20 times more massive than the Sun, lies near the center of the frame, moving toward the left at 24 kilometers per second. Its strong stellar wind precedes it, compressing and heating the dusty interstellar material and shaping the curved shock front. What set this star in motion? [...]
Two NASA astronauts and a European Space Agency astronaut headed into the weekend with a light day Friday. Meanwhile, the three cosmonauts from Roscosmos packed a Soyuz spacecraft for departure and worked on maintenance and science.
Commander Shane Kimbrough, who is returning to Earth early Monday, took it easy Friday aboard the International Space Station. He and Flight Engineers Peggy Whitson and Thomas Pesquet mainly performed light duty tasks and continued their daily exercise to stay hea [...]
Stellar explosions are most often associated with supernovae, the spectacular deaths of stars. But new ALMA observations provide insights into explosions at the other end of the stellar life cycle, star birth. Astronomers captured these dramatic images as they explored the firework-like debris from the birth of a group of massive stars, demonstrating that star formation can be a violent and explosive process too.
1350 light years away, in the constellation of Orion (the Hunter), lies a dense [...]
Astronomers have detected an atmosphere around the super-Earth GJ 1132b. This marks the first detection of an atmosphere around a low-mass Super-Earth, in terms of radius and mass the most Earth-like planet around which an atmosphere has yet been detected. Thus, this is a significant step on the path towards the detection of life on an exoplanet. The team, which includes researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, used the 2.2 m ESO/MPG telescope in Chile to take images of the plane [...]
The best known asterism in northern skies, The Big Dipper is easy to recognize, even when viewed upside down, though some might see a plough or wagon. The star names and the familiar outlines appear framed in the ruined tower walls of the French Chateau du Morimont if you just slide your cursor over the image or follow this link. Dubhe, alpha star of the dipper's parent constellation Ursa Major is at the lower left.
Together with beta star Merak the two form a line pointing the way to Polari [...]