Hawaiian Summit to Gain Giant Telescope

The construction of a large telescope on the summit of Mauna Kea which is opposed by the Hawaiians has permission now to go ahead. This has been opposed because the Hawaiians consider it sacred ground. The construction could start on the top of the 13,800 foot high mountain as early as April 2014. The mountain [...]


A New Telescope Called Alma Produces Its First Superior Images

A new telescope is starting to look at the universe. ALMA is the most powerful millimetre/submillimetre wavelength telescope in the world. These are longer wavelengths roughly about 1000 times longer than visible light wavelengths. Using these wavelengths ALMA allows astronomers to study really cold objects in the universe such as dense clouds of cosmic dust [...]


Kepler Finds a Multitude of Planets of All Shapes and Structures

Some great news from the planet front has just arrived. As was expected Kepler has found lots of new planets. These planets are really planetary candidates and have to be positively confirmed but a high percentage definitely will be planets. The recent findings increase the number of planets found by Kepler to 1235. 68 of [...]


Rocky Planet Found by Kepler Gets Us Closer to Finding an Earthlike Planet

The race to find an earthlike planet hots up with the Kepler space telescope finding a rocky planet. I say race because the telescope that finds an earthlike planet will enter the history books. This planet orbits a sun like star. The planet is only 40% larger than Earth (all the previous ones were the size [...]


Views of the Whole Solar Corona by the Solar Dynamics Observatory

It is possible to see the solar corona, the Sun’s atmosphere, during an eclipse but only the outer layer. The solar dynamics Observatory (SDO) is now taking images of the innermost solar corona seven days a week 24 hours a day. Normally the solar corona can only be seen by blocking the sun with a [...]


Supernova Explosions Aren’t Quite What We Thought

Supernovas are exploding stars which, depending on their type explode in different ways and for different reasons. Unfortunately or fortunately depending on the way you look at it new evidence has been found that these theories aren’t quite right. An instrument called the solar mass ejector imager has given extra information. Data from the imager, [...]


Identifying Exoplanets by Their Dust Tails

Are we losing the Sahara to space? No, is the simple answer to that. The Earth has a trail of dust behind it but the dust is interstellar dust which is already present in the solar system. This interplanetary dust comes from the fragments of comets and asteroids that have collided. As the Earth travels [...]


An Asteroid to Look Out For…

Asteroids and comets are flying around our solar system in all sorts of orbits and it’s only a matter of time until they hit the earth although there is rather a large amount of space that they can fly in compared to mass of the planets that they could hit. The ones that are close [...]


How to Talk to Aliens

Lots of signals have gone into space such as TV, radar and radio. The signals have been betraying our presence for 60 years and have passed over about 6000 star systems and are reaching new systems every day. This would seem to be enough, even though we haven’t received anything back yet, but what if [...]


Closer Views on a Growing Solar System

I wrote an article on the formation of the solar system and other planetary systems throughout the galaxy a few weeks ago. New information is coming to light all the time and this is a field that has a lot of discoveries left to find. The new discoveries were published in the astrophysical Journal. Astronomers [...]


Flying Telescope Takes to the Skies

Nasa’s stratospheric Observatory for infrared astronomy (SOFIA) or if you don’t want to be smart airborne telescope, took its first flight yesterday. As you can see from the image a door opens in the 747 so that the telescope can see the sky. It may sound odd to be flying around with a telescope hanging [...]


A Star Sprints Away from Its Birthplace

The Hubble telescope has found a blue hot star which is 90 times bigger than our sun sprinting across space. It would make the trip from the Earth to the Moon in under two hours which is not the fastest ever but is pretty fast anyway. A rogue star is probably to blame for breaking [...]


Best Of The Week Podcast- SETI and the Universe

Fifty years ago, a young astronomer named Frank Drake pointed a radio telescope at nearby stars in the hope of picking up a signal from an alien civilization. Thus began one of the boldest scientific projects in history: the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI). A great lecture with slides from the Royal Society. Join the [...]


Why Won’t That Supernova Go Bang?

A massive old star is about to die… How a supernova explosion will be observed and what with. [podcast] wont the supernova explode.mp3[/podcast] By NASA Join the forum discussion on this post – (1) Posts


Best of the Week Podcast- Why Don’t Supernovas Explode When They Should Do?

Supernovas don’t explode. Why is that? The nuclear fuel runs out and it begins a collapse under its own weight and there should be a massive blast, but nothing happens. Something is being missed but a new space telescope should resolve this problem. [podcast][/podcast]


Best of the Week Podcast-Hubble’s First Images of an Extrasolar Planet.

Paul Kalas was the leader of the team who managed the long-sought feat of actually taking a photograph of a planet orbiting another star. Before this, all the planets outside our solar system were found by indirect means. He describes how they achieved the breakthrough, using the Hubble Space Telescope, and discusses the wide range [...]


Best Of The Week- The Guiding North Star Podcast

Everything you need to know about the North star. No, it’s not as boring as it sounds! Be a north star expert. [podcast] star.mp3[/podcast] By slacker Astronomy


21 Reasons We Have Not Talked To Or Found Alien Civilizations

Look up and you will see lots of dots of light. No, it’s not a load of cars screaming towards the Earth because they missed the stop sign at Mars.  It’s stars. There are said to be about 140 billion stars that look like the sun in the Milky Way. There are a lot more stars [...]