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The Milky Way may have two supermassive black holes

Astronomy Magazine - 11 hours 53 min ago
Measurements of stars orbiting our galaxy's core suggest our 4-million-solar-mass black hole, Sagittarius A*, may have another supermassive companion lurking nearby.
Categories: Astronomy

Blue Origin has now flown – and landed — the same rocket six times

Astronomy Magazine - Wed, 12/11/2019 - 05:00

The Blue Origin rocket blasted off from Texas, bringing postcards and other projects from students into space.

Categories: Astronomy

Borisov, the interstellar comet, is captured as it approaches the Sun

Astronomy Magazine - Wed, 12/11/2019 - 05:00
Interstellar visitor 2I/Borisov just made its closest approach to the sun. Here are some shots astronomers took of its journey.
Categories: Astronomy

Gravitational-wave detectors get a boost by reducing quantum noise

Astronomy Magazine - Tue, 12/10/2019 - 05:00
Refined instruments reduce noise at the quantum level, allowing for discoveries of more distant gravitational waves.
Categories: Astronomy

NASA just blew up an SLS fuel tank on purpose

Astronomy Magazine - Tue, 12/10/2019 - 05:00
To prove their massive rocket could survive well beyond its intended limits, NASA blew a hole in its fuel tank.
Categories: Astronomy

Jupiter's Galilean moons likely formed bit by bit from pebbles

Astronomy Magazine - Tue, 12/10/2019 - 05:00
These large moons’ complex combination of properties could be best explained if they grew slowly from pebbles.
Categories: Astronomy

Mars 2020's landing site could be a good place to hunt for fossils

Astronomy Magazine - Mon, 12/09/2019 - 05:00
A recent study suggests the landing site for NASA's next Mars rover holds minerals that often preserve fossils on Earth.
Categories: Astronomy

How the icy moon Enceladus got 'tiger stripes' at its south pole

Astronomy Magazine - Mon, 12/09/2019 - 05:00
Saturn's moon Enceladus has mysterious, evenly spaced fissures in its icy shell where water erupts into space.
Categories: Astronomy

The Sky This Week from December 6 to 15

Astronomy Magazine - Fri, 12/06/2019 - 05:00
While Venus and Saturn have an exquisite conjunction in the early evening, the annual Geminid meteor shower peaks under the bright light of a nearly Full Moon.
Categories: Astronomy

Orbiting robots could soon start repairing satellites in space

Astronomy Magazine - Fri, 12/06/2019 - 05:00
By repairing and refueling satellites in space, fewer satellites would have to be launched into low-Earth orbit.
Categories: Astronomy

Meet CIMON-2, a new and improved robotic AI astronaut

Astronomy Magazine - Thu, 12/05/2019 - 05:00
The free-floating robot could make work more efficient on the International Space Station.
Categories: Astronomy

This huge galaxy has the biggest black hole ever measured

Astronomy Magazine - Thu, 12/05/2019 - 05:00
The monster black hole in galaxy cluster Abell 85 is roughly the size of our solar system, but packs the mass of 40 billion suns.
Categories: Astronomy

Low gravity may make astronauts' guts more fragile

Astronomy Magazine - Wed, 12/04/2019 - 05:00

Microgravity may stop the insides of human intestines from forming strong barriers against food-borne diseases.

Categories: Astronomy

Giant planet found around tiny white dwarf star, a first

Astronomy Magazine - Wed, 12/04/2019 - 05:00
The Neptune-sized planet, which orbits an Earth-sized star, is being slowly evaporated by the white dwarf, causing the planet to lose some 260 million tons of material every day.
Categories: Astronomy

NASA's mission to the Sun is already cracking some of our star's mysteries

Astronomy Magazine - Wed, 12/04/2019 - 05:00

Initial data from the Parker Solar Probe offer a promising look at how the mission may unravel the Sun's corona and solar wind.

Categories: Astronomy

Boca Chica: the tiny Texas town where SpaceX is building Starship

Astronomy Magazine - Wed, 12/04/2019 - 05:00
A small community on Texas' southernmost tip has become a prime destination for the spaceflight faithful.
Categories: Astronomy

This space anthropologist is chronicling astronauts' lives in orbit

Astronomy Magazine - Tue, 12/03/2019 - 05:00
Space anthropologist Jack Stuster has interviewed and observed astronauts for decades. He's also worked with NASA to improve the human experience of space exploration.
Categories: Astronomy

Astronomers find surprisingly complex magnetic fields in a galaxy’s halo

Astronomy Magazine - Tue, 12/03/2019 - 05:00
Astronomers hope to explain how galaxies like this one can grow magnetic fields that stretch for thousands of light-years — and what affect they have on galactic evolution.
Categories: Astronomy

First interstellar comet may soon break apart as it nears the Sun

Astronomy Magazine - Mon, 12/02/2019 - 05:00
Comet 2I/Borisov has a lot in common with comets from our own solar system. And astronomers think that could mean the alien comet will disintegrate during its closest approach to the Sun next week.
Categories: Astronomy

Hubble spots a galaxy brimming with young suns

Astronomy Magazine - Mon, 12/02/2019 - 05:00
By analyzing the light and energy from galaxies like NGC 3749, astronomers can learn about them from millions of light-years away.
Categories: Astronomy

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