Rutgers Astronomer Receives Packard Fellowship for Innovative Young Scientists

New Brunswick, N.J. (Oct. 15, 2020) – Blakesley Burkhart’s childhood days spent volunteering at a science museum and watching the

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Dust Dampens Albedo Effect, Spurs Snowmelt in the Heights of the Himalayas

Dust blowing onto high mountains in the western Himalayas is a bigger factor than previously thought in hastening the melting of snow there, researchers show in a study published Oct. 5 in Nature Climate Change. That’s because dust – lots of it in the Himalayas – absorbs sunlight, heating the snow that surrounds it.

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Galaxy Simulations Could Help Reveal Origins of Milky Way

Rutgers astronomers have produced the most advanced galaxy simulations of their kind, which could help reveal the origins of the Milky Way and dozens of small neighboring dwarf galaxies. Their research also could aid the decades-old search for dark matter, which fills an estimated 27 percent of the universe. And the computer simulations of “ultra-faint” dwarf galaxies could help shed light on how the first stars formed in the universe.

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Discovery points to origin of mysterious ultraviolet radiation

Lyman-alpha blobs (LABs) are gigantic clouds of hydrogen gas that produce ultraviolet light known as Lyman-alpha emissions. A study of Lyman-alpha blob 6 (LAB-6) is the first LAB with infalling gas feature. The findings suggest that star-forming galaxies are likely the primary energy source of Lyman-alpha radiation emitted from LAB-6.

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A fragile crust protects from dust

From June 2016 to August 2018, Perry traversed the playa by bike, researching how it contributes to dust in the Salt Lake Valley’s air. In a report prepared for the Utah Department of Natural Resources and Utah Division of Facilities Construction and Management, Perry details the current dust source regions on the playa and explains how declining lake levels, as well as damage to the playa, could make the problem worse.

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