News

From mysteriously quiet solar cycles to the evidence for Big Bang inflation, important stuff happens in astronomy. When it does, you can depend on Sky & Telescope’s editors and bloggers to keep you up to speed. We pride ourselves on our accurate, in-depth reporting of current astronomy news — instead of sound bites, we want to give you what you need to really understand the latest space events, whether they be observations from orbiters around Mars or the discovery of what’s to blame for powerful cosmic explosions. We talk to the experts, and then we talk to you.

So if you’re looking for responsible science journalism, look no further: here you’ll find the facts behind the headlines.

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Most “Earth-Like” Planet Found Yet

The newly discovered planet, Kepler-186f, is the first Earth-sized exoplanet circling in its star’s habitable zone. While it brings astronomers significantly closer to the goal of finding an Earth twin, we’re not there quite yet.

Tony Flanders's biggest and smallest telescopes.

What to Know Before Buying a Telescope

Looking through a telescope introduces you to a whole new world of unexpected wonders. But telescopes come in a huge range of sizes and shapes. Here's a detailed, printable guide to the essential features that every good scope needs to have.

A supernova remnant about 24,000 light years from Earth.

Supernova Remnant in Technicolor

Take a look at this supernova remnant from radio waves to x-rays to see multiple features of its bubble-like expanding shock wave. Supernovae — the dramatic explosions of massive stars ending their lives — can outshine their host galaxies for weeks, allowing them to be seen across millions of light-years of empty space. On...

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An Asteroid to Rule Them All

Scientists have new insight into the damage caused by a Rhode Island–size asteroid that hit Earth more than 3 billion years ago, making the rock that wiped out the dinosaurs look like a lightweight.

LADEE over the Moon

LADEE Skims the Moon Before Crash

NASA has a fully functioning spacecraft orbiting the Moon, all science goals completed, and a lunar eclipse coming up. It's a perfect opportunity to make some risky but potentially rewarding swoops within 2 miles of the lunar surface.

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A New Galactic Yardstick

Astronomers have developed a new method to measure distances to bright but faraway galaxies, a tool which will help better constrain the expansion rate of the universe.

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Dust in the Heart of Circinus

Infrared observations of the Circinus Galaxy may help reveal the shape of the dusty region fueling its active galactic nucleus and shed light on what governs dust structures in other galaxies.

Orbits of 2012 VP113 and Sedna

New Object Offers Hint of ”Planet X”

Astronomers have kicked around the idea of a distant "Planet X" for decades. But the recent discovery of 2012 VP<sub>113</sub>, located in an orbital "no man's land" roughly twice as far away as Pluto, has stoked the possibility that it really exists.