astronomy

Sometimes astronomy isn't about what you see, it's about what you don't see.

Sometimes astronomy isn’t about what you see, it’s about what you don’t see.

Constraints are essential in any scientific endeavour. If a hypothesis predicts that there should be an observable phenomenon, and no trace of it remains, that’s a pretty clear indication that the hypothesis is wrong. And even false assumptions still advance science. This is the case with astronomy and, in particular, explorations of the early universe. …

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Remembering the parabola of the Arecibo observatory, two years after its collapse

Remembering the parabola of the Arecibo observatory, two years after its collapse

The dish destroys the day it collapses.Photo: RICARDO ARDUENGO/AFP (Getty Images) It happened in less than 10 seconds, two years ago today: the 300 meters of the Arecibo observatory the satellite dish collapsed, eliminating one of the world’s most renowned sources of radio sightings. During its 57 years of operation in northern Puerto Rico, the …

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December Astronomy: The month heralds the onset of winter and an evening planetary extravaganza!  - Coachella Valley Independent

December Astronomy: The month heralds the onset of winter and an evening planetary extravaganza! – Coachella Valley Independent

All of the planets in our solar system (except Earth, our viewing platform) appear in a long line in the early December evening sky. Mercury and Venus start the month deep in the brilliance of the sun; emerging on the other side of the sun, they will become visible around the middle of the month …

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Cost-effective planetary X-ray development: Deep planetary scan examines Martian core

Cost-effective planetary X-ray development: Deep planetary scan examines Martian core

Scientists at the Australian National University (ANU) have developed a new cost-effective deep-scanning technique that can provide a window into the interiors of planets in Earth’s solar system. The new approach uses a single instrument on the planet and provided ANU seismologists with an analysis of the Red Planet’s interior, including its core. The dynamo …

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NASA won't change the name of the James Webb Telescope

NASA won’t change the name of the James Webb Telescope

James Webb directed NASA in the 1950s and 1960s, during the Lavender Scare of the Cold War, when government agencies often had discriminatory policies against gay and lesbian federal workers. For this reason, astronomers and others have long called on NASA to change the name of the James Webb Space Telescope. Earlier this year, the …

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Why ghost particles crashing into Antarctica could change astronomy forever

Why ghost particles crashing into Antarctica could change astronomy forever

About 47 million light-years from where you’re sitting, the center of a black hole-laden galaxy named NGC 1068 spews streams of enigmatic particles. These are neutrinos – otherwise known as the elusive “ghost particles” that haunt our universe while leaving little trace of their existence. Immediately after coming into existence, beams of these invisible pieces …

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