An image of the galaxy Arp299B, which is undergoing a merging process with Arp299A (the galaxy to the left), captured by NASA's Hubble space telescope. The inset features an artist's illustration of a tidal disruption event (TDE), which occurs when a star passes fatally close to a supermassive black hole. A TDE was recently observed near the center of Arp299B. Credits: Sophia Dagnello, NRAO/AUI/NSF; NASA, STScI

Astronomers See Distant Eruption as Black Hole Destroys Star

Astronomers See Distant Eruption as Black Hole Destroys Star For the first time, astronomers have directly imaged the formation and expansion of a fast-moving jet…

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About a century ago, we didn’t even know that galaxies existed. Mai Lam/The Conversation NY-BD-CC, CC BY-SA

Curious Kids: will the universe expand forever, or contract in a big crunch?

Curious Kids: will the universe expand forever, or contract in a big crunch? About a century ago, we didn’t even know that galaxies existed. Mai…

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The Small Magellanic Cloud galaxy here seen in infrared light, but it looks different when viewed at other wavelengths. ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI

Looking at the universe through very different ‘eyes’

Looking at the universe through very different ‘eyes’ The Small Magellanic Cloud galaxy here seen in infrared light, but it looks different when viewed at…

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​image credit: NASA’s Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope, illustrated here, will fly in the mid-2020s and provide astronomers with the most complete view of the cosmos to date. Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/CI Lab

NASA’s Next Major Telescope to See the Big Picture of the Universe

NASA’s Next Major Telescope to See the Big Picture of the Universe NASA is beginning to design its next big astrophysics mission, a space telescope…

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Credits: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/CI Lab

NASA Missions Catch First Light from a Gravitational-Wave Event

NASA Missions Catch First Light from a Gravitational-Wave Event For the first time, NASA scientists have detected light tied to a gravitational-wave event, thanks to…

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The Low-Frequency Array (LOFAR), a network of thousands of linked radio antennas, primarily located in the Netherlands, has discovered two new millisecond pulsars by investigating previously unknown gamma-ray sources uncovered by NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Pulsar J0952-0607, highlighted near center right, rotates 707 times a second and now ranks as second-fastest pulsar known. The location of LOFAR's first millisecond pulsar discovery, J1552+5437, which spins 412 times a second, is shown at upper left. Radio emission from both pulsars dims quickly at higher radio frequencies, making them ideally suited for LOFAR. The top of this composite image shows a portion of the gamma-ray sky as seen by Fermi. At the bottom is the LOFAR "superterp" near Exloo, the Netherlands, which houses the facility's core antenna stations. Credits: NASA/DOE/Fermi LAT Collaboration and ASTRON

‘Extreme’ Telescopes Find the Second-fastest-spinning Pulsar

‘Extreme’ Telescopes Find the Second-fastest-spinning Pulsar By following up on mysterious high-energy sources mapped out by NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, the Netherlands-based Low Frequency Array (LOFAR) radio…

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This artist’s view shows how the light coming from the surface of a strongly magnetic neutron star (left) becomes linearly polarised as it travels through the vacuum of space close to the star on its way to the observer on Earth (right). The polarisation of the observed light in the extremely strong magnetic field suggests that the empty space around the neutron star is subject to a quantum effect known as vacuum birefringence, a prediction of quantum electrodynamics (QED). This effect was predicted in the 1930s but has not been observed before. The magnetic and electric field directions of the light rays are shown by the red and blue lines. Model simulations by Roberto Taverna (University of Padua, Italy) and Denis Gonzalez Caniulef (UCL/MSSL, UK) show how these align along a preferred direction as the light passes through the region around the neutron star. As they become aligned the light becomes polarised, and this polarisation can be detected by sensitive instruments on Earth. Credit: ESO

First Signs of Weird Quantum Property of Empty Space?

First Signs of Weird Quantum Property of Empty Space? VLT observations of neutron star may confirm 80-year-old prediction about the vacuum By studying the light…

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This illustration shows a glowing stream of material from a star as it is being devoured by a supermassive black hole in a tidal disruption flare. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Studies Find Echoes of Black Holes Eating Stars

Studies Find Echoes of Black Holes Eating Stars Supermassive black holes, with their immense gravitational pull, are notoriously good at clearing out their immediate surroundings…

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TESS will look at the nearest, brightest stars to find planetary candidates that scientists will observe for years to come. Credits: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA’s Next Planet Hunter Will Look Closer to Home

As the search for life on distant planets heats up, NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) is bringing this hunt closer to home. Launching in…

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