Anne's Picture of the Day: Spiral Galaxy NGC 1097

Anne’s Picture of the Day: Spiral Galaxy NGC 1097

March 28, 2013 NGC 1097, a barred spiral galaxy in Fornax Image Credit & Copyright: R. Jay GaBany, Cosmotography (http://www.cosmotography.com) NGC 1097 (also known as Arp 77) is a relatively bright barred spiral galaxy of some 125 thousand light-years across, located about 45 million light-years away in the southern constellation of Fornax (the Furnace). It [continue reading]

How To Build A Really, Really Big Star

How To Build A Really, Really Big Star

  It takes a village, say researchers   Stars ten times as massive as the Sun, or more, should not exist: as they grow, they tend to push away the gas they feed on, starving their own growth. Westerhout 3 (W3) is a giant molecular cloud about 6200 light-years away in the Perseus Arm, one of the [continue reading]

Anne's Picture of the Day: The Pelican Nebula

Anne’s Picture of the Day: The Pelican Nebula

March 27, 2013 The Pelican Nebula, an emission nebula in Cygnus Image Credit & Copyright: J-P Metsävainio (http://astroanarchy.zenfolio.com) The Pelican Nebula (also known as IC 5070 and IC 5067) is an emission nebula, a star-forming region (H II region) of roughly 30 light-years across, located about 1,800 light-years from Earth, northeast of the bright star [continue reading]

A New Kind of Supernova Discovered

A New Kind of Supernova Discovered

  Until now, supernovas came in two main “flavors.” A core-collapse supernova is the explosion of a star about 10 to 100 times as massive as our Sun, while a Type Ia supernova is the complete disruption of a tiny white dwarf. Today, astronomers are reporting their discovery of a new kind of supernova called [continue reading]

The Moon and Vesta Share the Same Cosmic History

The Moon and Vesta Share the Same Cosmic History

  The asteroid Vesta, and perhaps other large asteroids, have more in common with Earth’s Moon than previously thought, according to a team of researchers from the NASA Lunar Science Institute (NLSI). Both Vesta and the Moon appear to have been bombarded by the same population of high-speed projectiles four billion years ago. Scientists have [continue reading]

Anne's Picture of the Day: Galaxy Group HCG 44

Anne’s Picture of the Day: Galaxy Group HCG 44

March 26, 2013 Hickson Compact Group 44, a small group of galaxies in Leo Image Credit: The MASIL Imaging Team Hickson Compact Group 44 (also known as the NGC 3190 Group) is a small group of bright galaxies containing three spiral galaxies and an elliptical galaxy, located about 60-100 million light-years away in the constellation [continue reading]