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Stellar Science

Artificial Intelligence Aids Astronomers

Astronomers have designed a neural network that can determine the particulars of binary star systems by just examining their light curves — and it can do it really, really fast.


Faint Supernovae Remain Unexplained

A subclass of supernovae that fades much faster than expected reveals possible kinks in astronomers' theories of what causes these explosions.

brown dwarf binary

Stellar Science

Brown-Dwarf Binary Tests Theories

Recent calculations for a pair of failed stars add to astronomers' scant knowledge of brown dwarfs and will help set a reference point for future studies.

Stellar Science

Regulus’s Secret Companion

Astronomers confirm a low-mass star orbits the Lion’s heart, the bright blue star imaged here to the lower right. But what exactly is it?

Milky Way

The Most Massive Star Yet?

Searching the core of one of the densest young star clusters in the Milky Way, scientists may have beat out primetime TV in the search for the newest big star.

Milky Way

Predicting a Stellar Catastrophe

Observations made by professional and amateur astronomers during the upcoming, once-in-a-generation eclipse of Epsilon Aurigae may reveal whether or not the star is heading for extinction.

Stellar Science

Puny Star's Big Flare Wows Astronomers

While a NASA satellite looked on, last month a red dwarf in Lacerta erupted with a titanic — and unexpected — burst of energy.

Stellar Science

Supernova Caught at its Very Start

By an unbelievable stroke of luck, X-ray astronomers catch the first minutes of a supernova explosion. You wouldn't have wanted to be there.

Stellar Science

How Type-Ia Supernovae Work: The Movie

You thought an exploding star would be simple? Hah.

Stellar Science

Polaris's Pulsations Pick Up

The North Star, slightly variable in brightness, continues to confound expectations.

Infrared view into Pisces

Stellar Science

The First Type-Y Star?

It's the coolest brown dwarf yet, and it seems to be in a spectral class of its own.


Standard-Candle Supernova Confusion

Type 1a supernovas are crucial for measuring how the expansion of the universe has been changing. But no one knows for sure exactly what they are.

Stellar Science

A Magnetar in Sheep's Clothing

A run-of-the-mill pulsar throws off its cloak of normalcy and displays its extraordinary nature.

RS Puppis and surrounding nebula

Milky Way

An Ingenious, Super-Good Cepheid Distance

Using a star's pulsations, their reflections, and some simple geometry, European astronomers have set a new record for the best-known distance to a crucial kind of star.


A Superfast Star from Far, Far Away

The latest "hypervelocity star" that astronomers are puzzling over didn't even start in our own galaxy.

Stellar Science

A Neutron Star's Hard Core

Astronomers have found some pulsars that appear unusually massive, calling into question our understanding of neutron-star interiors.

Stellar Science

The Orion Nebula, Exactly?

Radio astronomers succeed where others have failed to pin down the distance to a great showpiece of the night sky.

Stellar Science

Our Sun's Twin

A faint but observable star in Draco is the closest match yet to the one at the center of our solar system.

Stellar Science

New Route to a Supernova

A distant supernova erupted with signs that it marked the death of not one star, but two.

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