aug 042013
Hubble Finds 'Smoking Gun' After Gamma-Ray Blast

  NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope recently provided the strongest evidence yet that short-duration gamma-ray bursts are produced by the merger of two small, super-dense stellar objects. Compass and Scale Image for GRB 130603B. The galaxy (SDS J112848.22+170418.5) which resides almost 4 billion light-years away, produced the gamma-ray burst. Image Credit: NASA, ESA, and Z. Levay (STScI/AURA) The evidence [continue reading]

mei 242013
Magnetars are More Common than Thought

  Magnetars — the dense remains of dead stars that erupt sporadically with bursts of high-energy radiation — are some of the most extreme objects known in the Universe. A major campaign using NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and several other satellites shows magnetars may be more diverse — and common — than previously thought. This [continue reading]

okt 112012
Studying Neutron Stars on Earth

  Scientists from the universities of Kiel and Düsseldorf (both Germany) have developed a method to simulate gigantic magnetic fields that normally occur on neutron stars only. The physicists Professor Hartmut Löwen (Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf) and Professor Michael Bonitz (Kiel University) have now published these results in the journal “Physical Review Letters”. In the article they [continue reading]

okt 102012
Pulsars as Nature's own GPS in Space

  Scientists at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and the University of Leicester have been commissioned by the European Space Agency (ESA) to investigate the feasibility of using dead stars to navigate spacecraft in deep space. The findings of the research will advise ESA strategy and if feasible this technique may in future revolutionise the [continue reading]

okt 082012
How pulsars slow down with age

  Researchers at the University of Southampton have developed a model which explains how the spin of a pulsar slows down as the star gets older. The famous Crab Nebula (M1, NGC 1952 or Taurus A) is the remnant of SN 1054, a pulsar wind nebula with a diameter of 11 light-years, located in the Perseus Arm [continue reading]