apr 082014
Anne's Image of the Day: Planetary Nebula Abell 7

  April 8, 2014 Abell 7, an ancient planetary nebula in Lepus Image Credit & Copyright: Don Goldman, Astrodon Imaging Abell 7 (also known as PNG 215.5-30.8 and PK 215-30.1) is a very faint and old planetary nebula of about 8 light-years across, located some 1,800 light-years away from Earth in the southern constellation of [continue reading]

nov 302013
Anne's Image of the Day: Planetary Nebula Abell 70

November 30, 2013 Abell 70, a planetary nebula in Aquila Image Credit & Copyright: Adam Block/Mount Lemmon SkyCenter/University of Arizona (http://skycenter.arizona.edu/gallery/nebulae/Abell70) Abell 70 (also known as PN G038.1-25.4) is a planetary nebula that lies between 13,500 and 17,500 light-years away from Earth in the northern constellation of Aquila (the Eagle). It is approaching us at [continue reading]

nov 072013
Small Star Pulled Apart by Medium-Sized Black Hole

  On the edge of the nearby galaxy Messier 86, astronomers have observed a strange X-ray flash. This flash has almost certainly been caused by a rare cosmic accident in which a small star is pulled apart by a medium-sized black hole. The discovery may provide the missing evidence for the existence of medium-sized black [continue reading]

okt 112013
Water-rich Building Blocks Show Signs of Possible Past Life

  Astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have found the building blocks of solid exoplanets that are capable of having substantial amounts of water. This rocky debris, currently orbiting a white dwarf star called GD 61, is considered a relic of an exoplanetary system that survived the burnout of its parent star. The finding suggests [continue reading]

mei 092013
White Dwarfs "polluted" with Planetary Debris

  The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has found signs of Earth-like planets in an unlikely place: the atmospheres of a pair of burnt-out stars in a nearby star cluster. The white dwarf stars are being polluted by debris from asteroid-like objects falling onto them. This discovery suggests that rocky planet formation is common in clusters, [continue reading]

apr 292013
Looking for Habited Planets Around White Dwarfs

    TAU finds white dwarf stars may hold the key to detecting life on other planets   Because it has no source of energy, a dead star — known as a white dwarf — will eventually cool down and fade away. But circumstantial evidence suggests that white dwarfs can still support habitable planets, says [continue reading]