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Hot Topic Deep Space Cosmic Evolution
Dust Grains Highlight Path to Planet Formation
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: A detailed study of a protoplanetary disk shows that dust grains colliding with and adhere to each other. The process it what will eventually lead to the formation of planets.

Born-Again Star Shows the Fate of Our Solar System
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: Observations of a dying Sun-like star are helping scientists understand what the Earth and our solar system may experience billions of years from now.

Asteroid Belts of the Right Size are Friendly to Life
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: A new study indicates that size and location of a solar system's asteroid belt may determine whether or not complex life will evolve on Earth-like planets in the system.

A Crowded Planetary System
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: An extraordinarily crowded planetary system is providing critical clues for understanding why most known planetary systems appear different from our own solar system.

Most Planetary Systems are 'Flatter than Pancakes'
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: Using date from Kepler, researchers have statistically determined that most solar systems are similar to our own in that they are 'flatter than pancakes.'

How Galaxies Get Dusty
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: In one of the largest Hubble Space Telescope projects to date, astronomers are hoping to uncover how cosmic dust forms over time. The research is an important step in understanding the evolution of galaxies, stars and planets.

Clouds of Water Present at Star's Birth
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: Enough water to fill Earth's oceans more than 2000 times over has been discovered in a cloud of gas and dust that is on the verge of collapsing into a new Sun-like star. The finding could help astrobiologists understand the conditions of the early Solar System.

Comet Crystals in a Nearby Planetary System
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: Astronomers have found pristine material in a dust belt around a young star that matches comets in our own solar system.

The Magnetic Wakes of Pulsar Planets
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: Pulsars are dense stars that rotate rapidly and flash like lighthouse beacons. Now, a new study is helping astrobiolgists understand the potential properties of planetary systems around these extreme stars.

How Hot are Super-Earths?
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
Summary: A new study suggests that rocky super-Earths might cool down very slowly after their formation, making them hotter than previously thought. The research could have implications in understanding how "Earth-like" these planets truly are.

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