“Enormous Ghost Galaxy” –Hidden In the Milky Way’s ‘Zone of Avoidance’ (Weekend Feature)

Milky Way Galactic Center

 

An enormous ‘ghost’ galaxy, believed to be one of the oldest in the universe, was detected lurking on the outskirts of the Milky Way in November of 2018 by a team of astronomers who discovered the massive object when trawling through new data from the European Space Agency’s Gaia satellite. The object, named Antlia 2, avoided detection thanks to its extremely low density as well as a perfect hiding place in the Zone of Avoidance, behind the shroud of the Milky Way’s disc–a region full of dust and an overabundance of bright stars near the galactic center.

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“Ultima Thule” –Nazi Legacy Lurks at Farthest Reaches of Our Solar System

 

New Horizons Ultima Thule

 

A dark legacy of the Nazi Era looms far beyond Pluto in the cold outermost reaches of our solar system. Earlier this week we reported that NASA’s New Horizons mission team published the first results of its New Year’s 2019 flyby of the farthest world ever explored, a planetary building block and Kuiper Belt object called Ultima Thule, also known less poetically as object 2014 MU69.

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“An Object of Awesome Beauty” –Hubble Unveils Galactic Disruption

irregular galaxy NGC 4485

 

Every time we feature a new Hubble galaxy discovery, it triggers the question “what forms of alien life live there?” The Hubble object in question, irregular galaxy NGC 4485, shows all the signs of having been involved in a hit-and-run accident with a bypassing galaxy. But rather than destroying the galaxy, the chance encounter is spawning a new generation of stars, planets, and a starscape breathtaking beauty.

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“At The Edge of the Known World” –Ancient Kuiper-Belt Object Hints At Our Origins

Ultima Thule

 

“We’re looking into the well-preserved remnants of the ancient past,” said New Horizons Principal Investigator Alan Stern, of the Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado about Ultima Thule. “There is no doubt that the discoveries made about Ultima Thule are going to advance theories of solar system formation.

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“Unknown Dark Object” –Million Times Mass of the Sun Ripped a Hole in the Milky Way

Milky Way Galaxy

 

An enormous “something” appears to have torn a hole in part of the Milky Way’s halo. The “dark substructure” was found via Gaia spacecraft observations—a mission producing the most detailed 3D map of our galaxy—with Harvard’s Ana Bonaca noticing a perturbation in a tidal stream. Bonaca is a leading authority on how the tidal field of the Milky Way galaxy disrupts globular clusters, and what the resulting debris can tell us about the underlying distribution of dark matter.

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“Red Planet’s Epic Climate Change” –NASA Video Tour of Mar’s Mount Sharp

Mar's Video of Mt Sharp

 

A new animated video shows what it would be like to soar over Mount Sharp, which NASA’s Curiosity rover has been climbing since 2014. Each region displayed represents a different period in the history of Mount Sharp, which rises about 3 miles (5 kilometers) from the base of Gale Crater. Curiosity’s scientists want to visit these places to learn more about the history of water on the mountain, which slowly dried up as the climate changed.

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