Recent Entries

“Phantom Relic From The Big Bang at Milky Way’s Black Hole” (Weekend Feature)

Cosmic String

 

The sublime beauty and the danger of physics is that sometimes things exist that we can never see. Which led scientists to ask: Was an unknown object, perhaps a cosmic string, weird one-dimensional defects in space-time that should be out there, somewhere, detected at the Milky Way’s galactic center in 2016? If yes, it could have profound implications for understanding gravity, space-time and the universe itself.

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“Bizarre” –Strange Objects Detected Near Milky Way’s Supermassive Black Hole

G Objects

 

“These objects look like gas and behave like stars,” said co-author Andrea Ghez, UCLA’s Lauren B. Leichtman and Arthur E. Levine Professor of Astrophysics and director of the UCLA Galactic Center Group about a new class of bizarre objects with orbits ranging from about 100 to 1,000 years at the center of our galaxy, not far from the supermassive black hole called Sagittarius A* that look compact most of the time and stretch out when their orbits bring them closest to the black hole.

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Planet Earth Report –“The Supernova at the Bottom of the Sea to What Covid-19 Autopsies Reveal”

 

Earth from Space

 

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“Physics Powers the Origin of Life” –Ancient Proto-Organisms & Cosmic Rays

Gamma Ray Burst

 

“We are irradiated all the time by cosmic rays,” says astrophysicist  Noémie Globus, currently a post-doctoral researcher at New York University and the Simons Foundation’s Flatiron Institute. “Their effects are small but constant in every place on the planet where life could evolve, and the magnetic polarization of the muons and electrons is always the same. And even on other planets, cosmic rays would have the same effects.”

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“The Big Bang Galaxy” –‘Wolfe Disk’ Challenges Prior Assumptions

 

Wolfe Disk

 

In our 13.8 billion-year-old universe, most galaxies like our Milky Way form gradually, reaching their large mass relatively late. But a new discovery made with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) of a massive rotating disk galaxy, the Wolfe Disk, seen when the universe was only ten percent of its current age, as early as 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, challenging the traditional models of galaxy formation, according to Marcel Neeleman of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy.

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“Going Beyond” –NASA Names Hubble Successor After Its First Chief Astronomer Nancy Grace Roman

 

WFIRST Telescope

 

“I wondered had I really oversold the Hubble. I have to admit that, since, I have been convinced that I didn’t,” said Nancy Grace Roman, NASA’s first Chief Astronomer. Today, NASA announced that it is naming its next-generation ‘dark-energy’ space telescope, Hubble’s successor, the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST), in her honor.

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“Birth of an Exoplanet” –First Direct Evidence of a Star System Being Born

AB Aurigae Star System

 

“Thousands of exoplanets have been identified so far, but little is known about how they form,” says Anthony Boccaletti at the Observatoire de Paris, about observations made with the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (ESO’s VLT) that have revealed the first direct evidence of a star system, AB Aurigae, being born. Astronomers know planets are born in dense dusty discs surrounding young stars, like AB Aurigae, as cold gas and dust clump together.

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“So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish” –Water Worlds Like Earth May Not Be Best Bet for Life

"So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish" --Ocean Physics May Hold Key to Finding Life on Exoplanets

 

“The small amount of previous work on exoplanet oceans focused mostly on their climate impact,” said University of Chicago associate professor Dorian Abbot about a new study that suggests that in the search for alien life, planets exactly like Earth may not be best places to look. The research starts the process of “assessing the impact that ocean circulation has on nutrient cycling, biological productivity and, potentially, the detectability of life on exoplanets.”

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