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Explosive forming stars

Stellar Science

Astronomy in Pictures: The Birth of Stars and Planets

Images capture the birth of stars and planets in multiple results from space- and ground-based telescopes.


Not All Star-forming Clouds Are The Same

Astronomers have created the first high-resolution maps of the big, dense gas clouds that form stars within galaxies.


Planets Appear More Massive Than Disks Where They Form

Infant worlds might gobble up dust quickly, the interstellar environment might feed protoplanetary disks, or planet-building dust could be hiding in plain sight. Although disks of gas and dust around young stars are a necessary precursor to planet formation, an expanded survey of stars in our Galaxy confirms earlier doubts…

Dusty starburst galaxy (art)


Too Many Massive Stars in Universe's Youngest Galaxies

A new method of measuring star formation in the earliest galaxies finds that they’re producing more massive stars than expected — a result that could affect our understanding of how galaxies grow their stars.

Stellar fireworks in Orion

Stellar Science

ALMA Captures Stellar Fireworks in Orion

Stellar fireworks are what remains of a centuries-old explosion, the concussive consequence of four stars that came together in a gravitational tussle.

ALMA images triple protostar system

Stellar Science

ALMA Images Spiral Disk Around Baby Stars

Astronomers have imaged a third star embedded in the spiral disk around a pair of baby stars, the first direct evidence of a process of star formation known as disk fragmentation.

ALMA image of Hubble Ultra Deep Field


ALMA Pans for Galactic Gold in the Hubble Ultra Deep Field

ALMA, the largest telescope array in the world, took a look at the Hubble Ultra Deep Field, and revealed the cosmic history of star formation.

Gravitational Lens SDP.81


Dark Dwarf Galaxy Discovered

Astronomers using the ALMA array of radio dishes have detected a dwarf galaxy 4 billion light-years away by the pull of its dark matter.

Resolving the Cosmic Infrared Background


Hidden Galaxies Revealed

Astronomers studying the infrared glow that pervades the universe have pinned down its source: dusty, faint, and faraway galaxies.

Rotating disk encircling AFGL 4173

Stellar Science

The Origin of Massive Stars

High-mass stars may outshine and outweigh the Sun, but observations show all stars may have had a similar beginning.


Searching for Exoplanets Around HL Tau

When astronomers went searching for the planets that must exist around HL Tau, they came up empty — and future searches may not fare much better.

Black Holes

Weighing a Supermassive Black Hole

Combining a novel technique and a world-class telescope, astronomers have measured the mass of the supermassive black hole at the center of barred spiral NGC 1097.

low-dust galaxies


Dust-poor Early Galaxies

New ALMA observations reveal low levels of dust in nine early galaxies, suggesting astronomers should revise some of their calculations.

Einstein Ring of Fire


Ring-Shaped Spyglass to Early Universe

A rare type of gravitational lens offers astronomers a close look at a young, dusty galaxy manufacturing hundreds of stars a year.

Professional Telescopes

ALMA Image Reveals Planetary Genesis

An ALMA submillimeter-wavelength image unveils the dawn of planet formation around a surprisingly young star in unprecedented detail.

Astronomy and Society

17-Day ALMA Strike Ends in Resolution

The 17-day strike at the world’s largest ground-based observatory ended Saturday, and ALMA's revolutionary observations of the millimeter/submillimeter sky restart today.


How ALMA Works Its Magic

ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO) / C. Malin In the November 2013 issue of S&T, I write about a revolutionary new telescope being built in the Chilean Atacama Desert. The Atacama Large Millimiter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) explores a little-known region of the electromagnetic spectrum, waves that are longer than the farthest infrared but shorter…

People, Places, and Events

Alma Observatory Inaugurated

The future is now — the world’s most powerful radio telescope array was inaugurated yesterday.


ALMA Minds the (Planet‑Forming) Gap

For the first time, astronomers have imaged a key stage in planet formation, witnessing the gas streams that signal two gas giant planets sweeping up material around a star.

Professional Telescopes

ALMA Coming Together

As one of the world's greatest new telescopes takes shape, preliminary results impress.