How Amateurs Could Help Future Exoplanet Observations
Large observatories will require precise timing info to measure as many exoplanet atmospheres as possible. Backyard astronomers have the power to keep that intel fresh.
Amateurs Help Decide Juno's Path
Ahead of a decision on whether to fly the NASA spacecraft over Jupiter's Great Red Spot, hobbyists back on Earth provided crucial intel about the effects of an intruding disturbance.
Osiris-REX Finds Hints of Past Water on Asteroid Bennu
The NASA spacecraft detected signs of hydrated minerals on Bennu's surface, suggesting that the asteroid's larger parent body once hosted liquid water.
Voyager 2 Enters Interstellar Space
More than 18 billion kilometers from home, Voyager 2 has become the second probe to break through the heliopause, a tenuous boundary between the solar system and the rest of the Galaxy.
60-Second Astro News: Helium Exoplanets and a Supernova Surprise
This week in astronomy news: Inflated helium atmospheres surround two exoplanets, and the Kepler Space Telescope captures the moments around a supernova that hint at a companion star triggering the explosion.
Starlight Tally Reveals Cosmic History of Star Formation
Nearly 11 billion years ago, the universe churned out stars at a rate 10 times greater than today. And yet all the starlight in the cosmos appears no brighter on the sky than a 60-watt light bulb seen from miles away.
60-Second Astro News: A Carnivorous Quasar and a Galaxy Ghost
In astronomy news this week: The most luminous quasar known in the cosmos is devouring three galaxy companions, while a newly discovered ghostly satellite of the Milky Way hints at hordes more just waiting to be found.
Amateur Planet Hunters Have a New Online Resource
A database run by the American Association of Variable Star Observers will organize and archive data on transiting exoplanets collected by amateur astronomers.
Puny Star Might Be Specimen from Early Universe
A low-mass sun with few elements heavier than helium provides hope that the Galaxy might contain survivors from the very first generation of stars.
After Brief Shutdown, Hubble Goes Back to Work
Following three weeks of downtime, engineers have cleared out a mechanical blockage in one of Hubble's gyroscopes and returned the observatory to full science operations.
Saturn's Moon Dione Has Some Weird Stripes
Long straight parallel lines on the satellite's surface could be droppings from Saturn's rings, one of the moons, or a passing comet, researchers suggest.
Trojan Asteroids Are in a Class of Their Own
Hordes of debris trapped by Jupiter and Neptune have distinct colors that mark them as possibly the last remnants of the material that built the giant planets.
Dwarf Galaxy Found by Amateur
Donatiello I is a tiny galaxy about 10 million light-years away, and it was discovered by an Italian hobbyist with a homemade telescope.
60-Second Astro News: Infant Superclusters and Wavering Gamma Rays
In astronomy news this week: A gargantuan supercluster of galaxies lurks in the early universe, while data from the Fermi telescope hint at two supermassive black holes locked in a gravitational dance.
Some Moons Could Have Moons of Their Own
Four solar system satellites — and one putative exomoon — are big enough and far enough from their home worlds to hold onto tiny moons for billions of years.
Low-key supernova marks possible birth of neutron star duo
A massive star lost most of its mass before exploding and creating a neutron star — and a second nearby neutron star might have been the thief.
Voyager 2 Approaches Interstellar Space
An increase in cosmic rays indicates that Voyager 2 is approaching the heliopause, where the solar wind gives way to the interstellar medium.
Hubble Hibernates After Minor Breakdown
A failure of a gyroscope used to point and stabilize the Hubble telescope caused the observatory to safely shut down while engineers determine a fix.
Hubble Boosts Case for Exomoon
Exoplanet Kepler-1625b might harbor a moon the size of Neptune—potentially the first confirmed exomoon—but researchers urge caution.
New Object Found in Far Outer Solar System
Astronomers have discovered a object—2015 TG387—that could help in the hunt for a hypothesized Planet Nine in the distant reaches of the solar system.