A small galaxy 700 million years after the universe’s birth has a dust reservoir that makes it look like a much older galaxy.
Astronomers have discovered one of the brightest quasars in the early universe. The source, SDSS J010013.02+280225.8 (hereafter J0100+2802), is powered by a supermassive black hole at a redshift of 6.3, meaning that its light left it 12.8 billion years ago.
Scientists studying ice here on Earth think they’ve confirmed why comets have hard crusts covered in hydrocarbon gunk.
This image series, taken by NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft in late January 2015, reveals the dwarf planet Pluto and its largest moon, Charon, orbiting their common center of mass.
The Planck team has finally released its full-mission data, revealing a remarkably detailed view of our universe and our galaxy.
The long-awaited analysis of spiraling polarization patterns called B-modes affirms that these signals, purportedly from the universe’s post-birth inflation, are probably from dust in our galaxy instead.
Astronomers have potentially confirmed a five-planet exoplanet system around an 11-billion-year-old star in our galaxy.
Astronomers poring through two decades of archival and survey observations have discovered what looks like a pair of supermassive black holes closing in for a merger.
The Hubble Space Telescope is commemorating its 25th anniversary with a second look at the Pillars of Creation — but there’s hard science behind these pretty pictures.
Samples taken from two drill holes on Mars support the idea that Mars lost a whole lot of water fairly early in its history.
NASA’s Curiosity rover has detected both methane in Mars’s atmosphere and carbon-bearing organic compounds in its rocks. But it’s unclear where these molecules come from — or whether there’s any biological connection.
NASA’s MAVEN mission has discovered a new population of particles in Mars’s upper atmosphere. It’s also found a plume of particles escaping from the planet’s poles, confirming atmospheric loss is happening today.
On December 5th, NASA successfully launched the first test flight of its Orion capsule. Scheduled to carry astronauts beyond low-Earth orbit in the 2020s, the spacecraft is NASA’s first deep-space people transporter since the Apollo days.
Amateur astronomers have confirmed the presence of a large, bright storm cloud on the ice giant Uranus.
The comets in the infant planetary system around the star Beta Pictoris fall into two distinct families, with one reminiscent of the solar system’s Kreutz sungrazers.
The gaseous object G2 has survived its swing around the Milky Way’s central supermassive black hole, but the questions of what it is and where it comes from remain unanswered.
Astronomers might have an explanation for why some classical novae erupt in gamma rays.
Observations from several radio telescopes reveal that, when two galaxies merge, their progeny often have gaseous disks—a hypothesis that before now didn’t have solid observational evidence.
A new analysis of Planck data bolsters the claim that the polarization signal heralded as evidence for cosmic inflation is from dust instead.
A new diagram might link the diverse visible-light characteristics of quasars to two physical properties — essentially, their accretion rate and orientation. If the analysis holds up, it could point the way toward a long-sought unification.
Astronomers have mapped the cosmic watershed and discovered a massive supercluster that extends more than 500 million light-years and contains 100,000 large galaxies. The Milky Way sits on the edge of this humongous structure.
Astronomers are tracking down the seeds that likely grew to become today’s most massive elliptical galaxies.
A new measurement could be the farthest back in time astronomers have ever reached when measuring a black hole’s spin.
Astronomers might have found a star that was infected by the explosive death of one of the universe’s first stars.
Astronomers have detected a star in pre-explosion images of the peculiar supernova 2012Z. The detection is the first discovery of a potential progenitor for the oddball class of stellar explosions dubbed Type Iax.