Deep Space

  • The Wolf: New Planet or Brown Dwarf Star?
    Located in the Lupus I (the Wolf) cloud, a region of star formation about 400 or 500 light-years away, a young T-Tauri star may be either a new planet or a failed star. Although the borderline between the two is still a matter of debate,
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  • Surfing the Wavelengths
    Maggie Turnbull, an astronomer with the Carnegie Institution, has spent many years thinking about what kind of stars could harbor Earth-like planets. Her database of potentially habitable star systems could be used as a target list for NASA's upcoming Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF) mission.
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  • Re-igniting a Phoenix Star
    Scientists have unveiled new research which shows how exploding stars may have helped to create the earth. The discovery was made during a unique research project examining how some dead stars re-ignite and come back to life.
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  • Earths Galore
    How many planets like the Earth are there among the 130 or so known planetary systems beyond our own? How many of these "Earths" could be habitable? Recent theoretical work indicates that as many as half of the known systems could be harbouring habitable "Earths"
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  • April Solar Eclipse
    Solar eclipses are grand cosmic events that no nature-watcher wants to miss -- and an opportunity to see one will occur for most of the southern United States on Friday afternoon, April 8th.
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  • Dying Stars, Melting Planets
    Dying stars may warm previously frozen worlds around them to the point where liquid water temperature exists long enough for life to form, according to a new analysis of the evolution of habitable zones around stars by an international team of astronomers.
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  • First Light from Extrasolar Planets
    Most of the 150 known extrasolar planets are discovered and studied through techniques such as finding the telltale wobble of a star tugged by an orbiting planet, or the blink of a star as a planet passes in front of it. Now for the first
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  • Bloated Star Births
    Unlike humans, stars are born with all the weight they will ever have. A human's birth weight varies by just a few pounds, but a star's weight ranges from less than a tenth to more than 100 times the mass of our Sun.
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  • Galactic Hide-and-Seek
    How do you hide something as big and bright as a galaxy? You smother it in cosmic dust. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope saw through such dust to uncover a hidden population of monstrously bright galaxies approximately 11 billion light-years away.
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  • Twinkle, Twinkle…Large Planet
    An international team of astronomers has accurately determined the radius and mass of the smallest core-burning star known until now. It is the first time that direct observations demonstrate that stars less massive than 1/10th of the solar mass are of nearly the same size
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  • Whirlpool Haven for Planetary Birth
    A new theory of how planets form finds havens of stability amid violent turbulence in the swirling gas that surrounds a young star. These protected areas are where planets can begin to form without being destroyed. The key to understanding how planets are made is
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  • A Dozen New Planets Found
    The past four weeks have been heady ones in the planet-finding world: Three teams of astronomers announced the discovery of 12 previously unknown worlds, bringing the total count of planets outside our solar system to 145.
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  • Carbon World
    Most of the rocky planets familiar to us are predominantly silicate worlds, but a proposal for carbon or even diamond-like planets may add to the diversity of known solar systems.
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  • Moon, Planet or Star?
    A strange miniature solar system may be composed of a star only slightly larger than a planet. At this scale, are the celestial objects that orbit it, planets or moons?
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  • Radio Free Earth
    In Part Three in the series on stellar and terrestrial evolution, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Director of the Hayden Planetarium and host of the PBS/NOVA Series "Origins", discusses the limits of radio searches for extraterrestrial life.
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