Development of Freeform Optics Technology May Revolutionize Space Telescopes

A young astronomer observes Comet C/2011 L4 (PANSTARRS) during a public outreach program at the Seminole State College Planetarium in central Florida March 16, 2013. Photo Credit: Mike Killian / AmericaSpace

In the world of telescopes, light gathering power is dictated by the physical size of the first mirror or lens exposed to […]

Hubble Observes Largest Group of Faintest and Earliest Galaxies Ever Seen

Hubble view of a galaxy cluster containing some of the smallest and youngest galaxies ever observed. Image Credit: NASA/ESA/HST Frontier Fields team (STScI)

Peering ever further back in space and time, the Hubble Space Telescope has glimpsed the largest known group of the faintest and youngest primordial galaxies ever—over 250—some of which are […]

Event Horizon Telescope Provides New Evidence for Existence of Black Holes

An artist’s impression of a supermassive black hole. Astronomers believe that such objects lie at the centers of most galaxies in the Universe. A recent study, which was undertaken with the help of the Event Horizon Telescope, has provided new indirect evidence that indeed this is the case. Image Credit: ESO/L. Calçada

It’s […]

To the Edge of Time: Celebrating 25 Years of Hubble Science (Part 4)

The breathtaking image of the Hubble eXtreme Deep Field, which was created from data that had been collected with the Hubble Space Telescope in 2003 and 2004. In order for the image to be created, the space telescope pointed towards a small patch of the sky for a total of 50 days, while […]

NASA Space Telescope Sees Possible X-Ray 'Screams' From Zombie Stars

Illustration showing the central region of our galaxy as seen by NuSTAR (magenta circle). The smaller circle shows where the image was taken. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

It sounds like something from a bad sci-fi movie, but a NASA space telescope has detected what might be the X-ray “screams” from dead (zombie) stars. The […]

In Search of the Invisible Universe: Newly Discovered Dwarf Galaxies Around the Milky Way Might Hold Clues to Dark Matter

An illustration showing the distribution of the two dozen known dwarf satellite galaxies around the Milky Way. Astronomers have recently discovered nine more additional such candidate objects below the plane of the galaxy, shown here in red. Image Credit: S. Koposov, V. Belokurov (IoA, Cambridge). Background: 2MASS

The mystery of dark matter has […]

'Since the Earth Cooled': 20 Years Since the Record-Setting Mission of STS-67 (Part 2)

Endeavour touches down at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., on 18 March 1995, after almost 17 days in orbit. Photo Credit: NASA

Records are there to be broken, and in March 1995—20 years ago, this week—the crew of Endeavour was midway through what turned out to be the longest flight in shuttle program […]

Astronomers Measure Galactic Winds at Milky Way's Center, Detect Record-Breaking X-Ray Flares From Its Supermassive Black Hole

A composite image of the area around the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, known as Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*), taken with NASA’s Chandra X-ray space telescope. The colors in the main image represent medium, and high-energy X-rays as red, green, and blue respectively. The inset box shows a […]

Chandra X-Ray Observatory Helps Astronomers Weigh Most Massive Galaxy Cluster Discovered to Date

A composite, multi-wavelength image of the young galaxy cluster XDCP J0044.0-2033, also known as the Gioiello Cluster, which is located 9.6 billion light-years away. In the image, X-ray wavelengths appear purple, infrared appear as large red halos around some galaxies, and visible light appears as are red, green, and blue. Image Credit: X-ray: […]

Of Warm Gas and Galaxy Mergers: Collisions Between Galaxies Can Halt Star Formation, According to New Study

A composite image of the gravitationally interacting galaxies NGC 3226 (at the top) and NGC 3227 (bottom), which clearly shows the tidally generated large structures that surround them as a result of a past collision with a third galaxy. Optical wavelengths in the image are shown in gray scale. The infrared glow of […]