Cosmic Dance: Astronomers Discover Two Supermassive Black Holes Orbiting Each Other

Artist’s conception of the two supermassive black holes in orbit around each other. Image Credit: Joshua Valenzuela/UNM

Black holes are some of the most bizarre and mysterious phenomena in the Universe – they have captivated the imaginations of scientists and the public alike, and have been featured in many science fiction movies and stories. […]

Gemini Planet Imager Finds Its First Exoplanet, a Methane-Rich 'Young Jupiter'

Discovery near-infrared image of the exoplanet 51 Eridani b taken by the Gemini Planet Imager on Dec. 21, 2014. The relative size of Saturn’s orbit is also shown for comparison. Image Credit: Gemini Observatory/J. Rameau (UdeM)/C. Marois (NRC Herzberg)

The Gemini Planet Imager, a new telescopic instrument designed to find, image, and study faint, […]

Gemini Planet Imager Concludes Year-Long Commissioning Phase, Begins Regular Science Observations With Impressive First Results

The circumstellar disk around the young star HR 4796A, as imaged by the Gemini Planet Imager, which is mounted on the 8.2-m Gemini South telescope in Chile. These images reveal a complex pattern of variations in brightness and polarization around the HR 4796A disk. The western side (tilted closer to the Earth) appears brighter […]

Between the Planet and the Star: A New Ultra-Cold, Sub-Stellar Object Discovered Close to Sun

An artist’s depiction of the newly discovered WISE J085510.83-071442.5, the coldest known brown dwarf candidate, located 7.2 light-years from the Sun. Image Credit: Penn State University/NASA/JPL-Caltech

Contrary to the human need for organising objects in well-defined and distinct categories, our Solar System seems to be replete with celestial objects that defy our tidy definitions […]

Gemini Planet Imager: New Telescope Will Photograph Distant Worlds

Simulation of planets imaged by the Keck Telescope (left) compared to GPI (right). Image Credit: Christian Marois/Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics and Marshall Perrin/Space Telescope Science Institute

For those who wonder about alien worlds out there, this is an exciting time of discovery. The number of exoplanets found so far is now well into the […]