Surprise Discovery of a 14-Year-Old Supernova
Much of today’s astronomy happens via methodical searches, but sometimes serendipitous discoveries still surprise us. Such is the case with the transient CGS2004A, a possible supernova recently detected in a galaxy nearly 50 million light-years away.
Planet Formation Caught in the Act
A team of scientists has captured evidence that PDS 70b, the first directly imaged instance of early planet formation, is actively accreting material, and they’ve measured the rate at which it’s growing.
A Rapidly Spinning Black Hole with a Warped Disk
An X-ray telescope recently installed on the International Space Station has provided a detailed look at a black hole feeding off its companion star.
When Giant Planets Orbit Evolved Stars
A new study explores the impacts of stars that age past the main sequence and evolve into red giants on the planets orbiting around them by looking at the orbits of gas giants closely circling evolved stars.
Identifying Life from Varying Atmospheres
There’s no hiding — changes in Earth’s atmosphere over the seasons are a dead giveaway to the fact that Earth hosts life. Now a new study explores whether we might use atmospheric seasonality like Earth’s to detect life on other planets. Looking for Change Most of the searches for life…
The Aftermath of GW170817: Neutron Star or Black Hole?
A team of scientists says we now have an answer to one of the biggest mysteries of GW170817: after the neutron stars collided, what object was formed?
A Massive Neutron Star with a Two-Faced Companion
How massive can a neutron star get? In a recent study, scientists may have identified the most massive neutron star yet — by leveraging observations of its highly irradiated companion.
Disentangling the History of the Magellanic Clouds
The Magellanic Clouds — two nearby dwarf galaxies easily visible to the naked eye in the southern hemisphere — are key to understanding the dynamics and evolution of the Local Group of galaxies. Can an in-depth look at these galaxies’ outer regions help us make sense of their complicated interaction history?
Globular Clusters Shine in a Galaxy Lacking Dark Matter
You may have seen recent news about NGC 1052–DF2, a galaxy that was discovered to have little or no dark matter. Now, a new study explores what NGC 1052–DF2 does have: an enigmatic population of unusually large and luminous globular clusters.
The Fate of Exomoons when Planets Scatter
Planet interactions are thought to be common as solar systems are first forming and settling down. A new study suggests that these close encounters could have a significant impact on the moons of giant exoplanets — and they may generate a large population of free-floating exomoons.
Neutron Stars Discovered on Collision Course
Got any plans in 46 million years? If not, you should keep an eye out for PSR J1946+2052 around that time — this upcoming merger of two neutron stars promises to be an exciting show!
An Eccentric Planet Skims a Giant Star
As part of a major survey of evolved stars, scientists have discovered the most eccentric planet known to orbit a giant. What can we learn from this unusual object before it’s eventually consumed by its host?
Hubble’s View of Little Blue Dots
The recent discovery of a new type of tiny, star-forming galaxy is the latest in a zoo of detections shedding light on our early universe. What can we learn from the unique “little blue dots” found in archival Hubble data?
More Planets in the Hyades Cluster
A few weeks ago, Astrobites reported on a Neptune-sized planet discovered orbiting a star in the Hyades cluster. A separate study submitted at the same time, however, reveals that there may be even more planets lurking in this system.
Which of Kepler’s Stars Flare?
The habitability of distant exoplanets is dependent upon many factors — one of which is the activity of their host stars. To learn about which stars are most likely to flare, a recent study examines tens of thousands of stellar flares observed by Kepler. Need for a Broader Sample Most…
Analog of the Milky Way and the Magellanic Clouds
A hunt for merging dwarf galaxies has yielded an intriguing result: 180 million light-years away, a galaxy very similar to the Milky Way — with two dwarf-galaxy satellites just like our own Magellanic clouds
Little Eyes on Large Solar Motions
What can we learn from observations made with digital cameras mounted on ~10-cm telescopes? It turns out, a lot about the solar corona.
When a Star and a Binary Meet
What happens in the extreme environments of globular clusters when a star and a binary system meet? A team of scientists has new ideas about how these objects can deform, change their paths, spiral around each other, and merge.
Featured Image: The Cosmic Velocity Web
Have you ever considered the idea of a cosmic velocity web? Learn more about these intriguing visualizations from the study led by Daniel Pomarède.
How Do Earth-Sized, Short-Period Planets Form?
Matching theory to observation often requires creative detective work. In a new study, scientists have used a clever test to reveal clues about the birth of speedy, Earth-sized planets.