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February 26, 2015
The Strange Case of the Missing Dwarf
Paris (SPX) Feb 26, 2015
The new SPHERE instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope has been used to search for a brown dwarf expected to be orbiting the unusual double star V471 Tauri. SPHERE has given astronomers the best look so far at the surroundings of this intriguing object and they found - nothing. The surprising absence of this confidently predicted brown dwarf means that the conventional explanation for the odd behaviour of V471 Tauri is wrong. This unexpected result is described in the first science paper based on ... read more

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Satellite Services supplies on-board sub-systems for smallsats and microsats.
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The Cosmic Chemistry That Gave Rise to Water
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Dark matter guides growth of supermassive black holes
Every massive galaxy has a black hole at its center, and the heftier the galaxy, the bigger its black hole. But why are the two related? After all, the black hole is millions of times smaller and le ... more
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Why do starburst galaxies 'burst'?
Starburst galaxies transmute gas into new stars at a dizzying pace - up to 1,000 times faster than typical spiral galaxies like the Milky Way. To help understand why some galaxies "burst" while othe ... more
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The strange case of the missing dwarf
Some pairs of stars consist of two normal stars with slightly different masses. When the star of slightly higher mass ages and expands to become a red giant, material is transferred to other star an ... more
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Exploded Star Blooms Like a Cosmic Flower
Because the debris fields of exploded stars, known as supernova remnants, are very hot, energetic, and glow brightly in X-ray light, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has proven to be a valuable tool ... more
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Mismatched twin stars spotted in the delivery room
The majority of stars in our galaxy come in pairs. In particular, the most massive stars usually have a companion. These fraternal twins tend to be somewhat equal partners when it comes to mass - bu ... more
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Close Encounters of a Scholz Kind
group of astronomers from the US, Europe, Chile and South Africa have determined that 70,000 years ago a recently discovered dim star is likely to have passed through the solar system's distant clou ... more
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In a first, astronomers catch a multiple star system in the process of forming
This week an international team of astronomers reports the first multiple-star system to be observed during the earliest stage of formation. This finding supports model predictions about how two- an ... more
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Birth of a star quartet
An international team of astrophysicists has witnessed a unique event: for the first time, researchers have discovered the formation of a quadruple star system from widely separated fragments of a f ... more
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VLA finds unexpected 'storm' at galaxy's core
Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) found surprisingly energetic activity in what they otherwise considered a "boring" galaxy, and their discovery provides imp ... more
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Stellar partnership doomed to end in catastrophe
A team of astronomers, led by Miguel Santander-Garcia, have discovered a close pair of white dwarf stars - tiny, extremely dense stellar remnants - that have a total mass of about 1.8 times that of ... more
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Lifting the veil on a dark galaxy
A cluster of young, pulsating stars discovered in the far side of the Milky Way may mark the location of a previously unseen dark-matter dominated dwarf galaxy hidden behind clouds of dust. A ... more
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Dark matter at the heart of our galaxy
The ubiquitous presence of dark matter in the universe is today a central tenet in modern cosmology and astrophysics. Its existence in galaxies was robustly established in the 1970s with a variety o ... more
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Stars are younger
The highly anticipated update of the analysis of data from the European Space Agency's Planck satellite starts with a first paper published in Astronomy and Astrophysics, which already holds in stor ... more
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The earliest stages of star formation in the Ophiuchus molecular cloud
Molecular cores are dense condensations within molecular clouds, in which stars are born. Guoyin Zhang et al. obtained 350 um dust continuum data using the SHARC-II camera at the Caltech Submillimet ... more
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CWRU astronomers find new details in first known spiral galaxy
Case Western Reserve University astronomers peered deep into space to discover new features of a galaxy that's been sketched and photographed for 170 years. The researchers were able to see faint p ... more
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VISTA stares right through the Milky Way
As one of its major surveys of the southern sky, the VISTA telescope at ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile is mapping the central regions of the Milky Way in infrared light to search for new and hid ... more
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    'Live fast, die young' galaxies lose the gas that keeps them alive
    Galaxies can die early because the gas they need to make new stars is suddenly ejected, research published this week suggests. Most galaxies age slowly as they run out of raw materials needed for gr ... more
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    Could a new proposed particle help to detect dark matter?
    Researchers at the University of Southampton have proposed a new fundamental particle which could explain why no one has managed to detect 'Dark Matter', the elusive missing 85 per cent of the Unive ... more
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    CAT scan of nearby supernova remnant reveals frothy interior
    Cassiopeia A, or Cas A for short, is one of the most well studied supernova remnants in our galaxy. But it still holds major surprises. Harvard-Smithsonian and Dartmouth College astronomers have gen ... more
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    Galactic bubbles offer clues to dark matter
    Compared to other galaxies, the Milky Way is a peaceful place. But it hasn't always been so sleepy. In 2010, a team of scientists working at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics discovere ... more
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    What are yellowballs
    Some four years ago, a citizen scientist helping the Milky Way Project study Spitzer Space Telescope images for the tell-tale bubble patterns of star formation noticed something else. "Any ide ... more
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    Russian Scientists Study Cosmic Dust at Unique Open-Air Lab in Antarctic
    The laboratory, which is located inland near Russia's Vostok Station in Princess Elizabeth Land, Antarctic, will help scientists explore cosmic dust particles, the Russian online newspaper Gazeta.ru ... more
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    Stardust shows gold and uranium alchemy in stars less than expected
    Researchers combing the ocean depths have made a surprising discovery about the frequency with which stars beyond our solar system produce special heavy elements such as gold and uranium. Stel ... more
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    Scientists slow down light particles
    The speed of light is a limit, not a constant - that's what researchers in Glasgow, Scotland, say. A group of them just proved that light can be slowed down, permanently. ... more
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