Long-term liquid water also on non-Earth-like planets?

Liquid water is an important prerequisite for life to develop on a planet. As researchers from the University of Bern, the University of Zurich and the National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) PlanetS report in a new study, liquid water could also exist for billions of years on planets that are very different from Earth. This calls our currently Earth-centred idea of potentially habitable planets into question.

NASA’s Webb to Uncover Riches of the Early Universe

Telescopes have spotted many distant galaxies – but none earlier than 400 million years after the big bang. What were galaxies that existed even earlier like? Two research teams using the James Webb Space Telescope will wield its state-of-the-art instruments to reveal an untold number of details about this early period in the universe for the first time – and revise what we know about some of the earliest chapters of galaxy evolution.

Science Results From NRAO Facilities to Be Presented at Multiple AAS 240 Press Conferences

Seven new scientific results from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), the Very Large Array (VLA), and the Very Large Array Sky Survey (VLASS) will be revealed at multiple press conferences during the 240th meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) between June 13-15, 2022 in Pasadena, California.

New Clues about How Hot Jupiters Form

Since the first hot Jupiter was discovered in 1995, astronomers have been trying to figure out how the searing-hot exoplanets formed and arrived in their extreme orbits. Johns Hopkins University astronomers have found a way to determine the relative age of hot Jupiters using new measurements from the Gaia spacecraft, which is tracking over a billion stars.

Rapid-fire fast radio burst shows hot space between galaxies

A recently discovered, rare and persistent rapid-fire fast radio burst source – sending out an occasional and informative cosmic ping from more than 3.5 billion light years away – helps to reveal the secrets of the broiling hot space between the galaxies. That’s according to an international team of astronomers who published their findings in the journal Nature.

Astronomers Closer to Unlocking Origin of Mysterious Fast Radio Bursts

Nearly 15 years after the discovery of fast radio bursts (FRBs), the origin of the millisecond-long, deep-space cosmic explosions remains a mystery. That may soon change, thanks to the work of an international team of scientists – including UNLV astrophysicist Bing Zhang – which tracked hundreds of the bursts from five different sources and found clues in FRB polarization patterns that may reveal their origin.

Tread lightly: ‘Eggshell planets’ possible around other stars

Strange ‘eggshell planets’ are among the rich variety of exoplanets possible, according to a study from Washington University in St. Louis. These rocky worlds have an ultra-thin outer brittle layer and little to no topography. Such worlds are unlikely to have plate tectonics, raising questions as to their habitability.

ALMA Scientists Detect Signs of Water in a Galaxy Far, Far Away

Scientists studying SPT0311-58 found H20, along with carbon monoxide in the galaxy, which is located nearly 12.88 billion light years from Earth. Detection of these two molecules in abundance suggests that the molecular Universe was going strong shortly after the elements were forged in early stars.

A Cosmic Whodunit: ALMA Study Confirms What’s Robbing Galaxies of Their Star-Forming Gas

Astronomers examining the nearby Universe with the help of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have just completed the largest high-resolution survey of star-forming fuel ever conducted in galaxy clusters. But more importantly, they’re tackling a long-standing mystery in astrophysics: what’s killing galaxies? The research, which provides the clearest evidence to date that extreme environments in space have severe impacts on the galaxies within them, will be published in an upcoming edition of The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series.

Astronomers Uncover Briefest Supernova-Powered Gamma-Ray Burst

Astronomers have discovered the shortest-ever gamma-ray burst (GRB) caused by the implosion of a massive star. Using the international Gemini Observatory, a Program of NSF’s NOIRLab, astronomers identified the cause of this 0.6-second flurry of gamma rays as a supernova explosion in a distant galaxy. GRBs caused by supernovae are usually more than twice as long, which suggests that some short GRBs might actually be imposters — supernova-produced GRBs in disguise.

NASA returns Hubble Space Telescope to science operations

NASA has returned the science instruments on the Hubble Space Telescope to operational status, and the collection of science data will now resume. This will be the first science data collected since the payload computer experienced a problem on June…

National Astronomy Meeting 2021: Media invitation

Around 850 astronomers and space scientists will gather online from 19 – 23 July, for the Royal Astronomical Society National Astronomy Meeting 2021 (NAM 2021) hosted by the University of Bath. Postponed in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the…