“Warping Spacetime to Explore Uncharted Realms” –NASA Seeks Out Hidden Planets at Milky Way’s Center

Milky Way Center

 

NASA’s WFIRST’s infrared telescope will explore uncharted regions of the galaxy for exoplanets due to the different goals of previous missions. Kepler, for example, searched a modest-sized region of about 100 square degrees with 100,000 stars at typical distances of around a thousand light-years. TESS scans the entire sky and tracks 200,000 stars; however their typical distances are around 100 light-years. WFIRST will search roughly 3 square degrees, but will follow 200 million stars at distances of around 10,000 light-years.

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“Something’s Messing With the Milky Way” –ESA’s Gaia Spacecraft Reveals What & Why

Milky Way Galaxy Warped Shape

 

Something is warping our home galaxy. Astronomers suspect that Sagittarius, a dwarf galaxy orbiting the Milky Way might be causing the ripple, and may have burst through the Milky Way’s galactic disc several times in the distant past. Astronomers think that Sagittarius will be gradually absorbed by the Milky Way, a process which is already underway. The Gaia Spacecraft, with its unique survey of more than one billion stars in our galaxy, might hold the key to unraveling the mystery.

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Our Solar-System’s Milky Way Orbit –“A Danger-Fraught 226-Million-Year Three-Dimensional Ballet”

Milky way Center

 

Our Solar System’s orbit through the Milky Way has only happened 20.4 times since the Sun itself formed 4.6 billion years ago. It’s estimated that the Sun will continue fusing hydrogen for another 7 billion years. In other words, it only has another 31 orbits it can make before it runs out of fuel. Researchers at Cardiff University suggested that there is a “genocidal countdown” built into the motion of our solar system –that our system’s orbit through the Milky Way encounters regular speedbumps – and by “speedbumps”, meaning “potentially extinction-causing asteroids.”

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The Galaxy Report –“Earth’s New Ice Age to Mars’ Uncovered Secrets”

 

Dark Energy Survey

 

“The Galaxy Report” provides summaries and links to headline news by leading science journalists about the amazing discoveries, technology, people, and events changing our knowledge of Planet Earth and the Cosmos beyond. Our caffine-inspired curation team scours the world, doing your work for you –all in one place.

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“From Before Its Birth” –Oldest, Pristine Stars in Universe Found at Milky Way’s Center

Milky way Center

 

“These pristine stars are among the oldest surviving stars in the Universe, and certainly the oldest stars we have ever seen,” said astronomer Louise Howes at The Australian National University (ANU), currently at Lund University, who was a member of a 2015 team along with the University of Cambridge, about the discovery of of stars that date from before the Milky Way Galaxy formed, when the Universe was just 300 million years old. The stars, found near the center of the Milky Way, are surprisingly pristine, but contain material from an even earlier star, which died in an enormous hypernova explosion. “Our Milky Way galaxy formed around them,” she added.

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Colossal Mystery Object Observed at Milky Way Center –“A Failed Star or Unknown Planet?”

 

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Astronomers have used the light-warping effects of gravity to spot a massive object OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb using NASA’s infrared Spitzer Space Telescope, 13 times the mass of Jupiter and orbits a star about 22,000 light years away. This new discovery of an absolutely massive planet residing in our galaxy’s “bulge”  (image above) has scientists struggling to explain if it’s a huge unknown planet or a failed star.

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