21–40 of 45 results

Solar System

No Planet Nine? Small-body Pile-up Could Explain Odd Orbits

New research shows that interactions between small objects beyond Neptune’s orbit —and not a hypothetical Planet Nine — could be the reason some far-flung solar system objects “detach” from their original orbits.

Discovery images of asteroid 2015 BZ509

Solar System

Did This Wrong-way Asteroid Come from Beyond the Solar System?

An intriguing asteroid was spotted traveling backwards around Jupiter back in 2015. Now a team of researchers think it could have formed around another star.

The Milky Way, cropped

Milky Way

Amateurs Take Huge Panoramic View of the Milky Way — Without a Telescope

This is what the largest available image of the Milky Way using only off-the-shelf photographic equipment looks like.

Terrestrial Synestia (art)

Solar System

Could a Giant Impact Have Vaporized Earth to Create the Moon?

In a new twist on the giant impact theory, a new idea posits that the Moon might have formed from the vaporized remains of Earth after an epic collision with another planet-sized body.

Stellar Science

Amateur Astronomer Captures Supernova’s First Light

In 2016 an amateur astronomer was testing his camera — and captured the first flash of a supernova.

Jupiter's Great Red Spot

Solar System

Juno Probes Depths of the Great Red Spot

NASA’s Juno spacecraft peeked under the clouds of the most iconic weather feature in the solar system, Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, revealing a complex structure deep below the surface.

Small Magellanic Cloud at radio wavelengths


New Telescope Sees Galaxy Down to Its Atoms

Astronomers have obtained the most detailed radio image of hydrogen gas in a neighboring galaxy, revealing its structures with more precision than ever before.

full Moon

Learning About the Sky

Native American Full Moon Names

Native American tribes each had their own full Moon names — we introduce the most commonly used ones and the traditions behind them.

The Milky Way from Australia

History and Sky Lore

Aboriginal Australians Observed Red Giant Stars’ Variability

New interpretations of oral accounts by Aboriginal Australians show that they included references to the variability of red giants Antares, Betelgeuse, and Aldebaran.

Moon's ancient atmosphere

Solar System

Ancient Moon Had Atmosphere Made of Volcano Smoke

Roughly 3.5 billion years ago huge volcanoes released enough gas to cover the Moon with a thin atmosphere that was visible from Earth.

Black Holes

2017 Nobel Goes to Gravitational Waves

Three American physicists have received the Nobel Prize in physics for their contributions to the discovery of gravitational waves.

Solar Eclipse 2017

Astronomy and Society

Millions of Americans Viewed August Solar Eclipse

The 2017 solar eclipse could easily be the most watched event in US history. Can we learn something from it?

Professional Telescopes

Iconic Radio Telescope Begins 7-year Search for New Objects

A new survey promises the most complete map of radio-emitting celestial sources ever made. It will reveal thousands of new objects after seven years of observation.



Puffed-Up Hot Jupiter Is Surprisingly Dark

Researchers have found that a football-shaped, ultra-hot gas giant that’s being devoured by its host star is also one of the least reflective exoplanets ever found.


An Atmosphere of Heavy Metals

Researchers have found strong evidence of titanium oxide in the atmosphere of a hot giant planet, adding new insights to the complex motions of these planets’ extreme atmospheres.

Stellar Science

Shockwaves Light up Stellar Explosions

Thermonuclear power sets off a type of stellar explosion known as a classical nova. Now, new research explains the mechanisms that cause these blasts to light up.

Pluto map

Solar System

First Pluto Features Officially Named

Two years after New Horizons captured the first high-resolution image of Pluto, the IAU releases official names for some of its features.

Astronomy and Society

Eclipse Aftermath Brings Lawsuit Against Amazon

Counterfeit eclipse glasses created great confusion in the days prior to the solar eclipse. Luckily few cases of eye damage have been reported.

Ancient Nova Scorpii 1437

Stellar Science

Historical Observations Reveal Ancient Nova

Astronomers and historians pinpoint the source of a 15th-century classical nova. It’s currently regathering strength.


Stellar Science

Antares Image Reveals Chaotic Surface

Researchers have constructed a detailed view of the surface of red supergiant star Antares, revealing a chaotic atmosphere powered by mechanisms that are still poorly understood.