Researchers scanning the skies just got a big surprise. They spotted a humongous galaxy orbiting our own, where none had been seen before. It appeared, seemingly, out of nowhere.
Astronomers have just discovered one of the biggest black holes ever. Even more surprising, though, is where they found it—and the strange reason it got so big.
Looking at these spiral galaxies glowing brightly against the dark, it’s hard to imagine that they could be so easily missed—but they were right up until now, when an astronomical survey catalogued them as equal to the biggest and brightest galaxies ever seen.
Look deep into this photo and what you’ll see is something further away from you than you’ve ever glimpsed before.
Astronomers at the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research have discovered a galaxy with a rather remarkable feature—a massive plume of gas measuring 300,000 light-years across. That’s five times the length of the galaxy itself.
Astronomers just uncovered hundreds of hidden galaxies a mere 250 million light years away from Earth—well within our own galactic neighborhood. But how did they stay unknown for so long? The fault isn’t with them, it’s with our own Milky Way.
Astronomers in India have discovered a very unusual galaxy, and it’s dying. By now, in fact, it’s probably already dead.
According to Albert Einstein, the speed of light is an absolute constant beyond which nothing can move faster. So, how can galaxies be traveling faster than the speed of light if nothing is supposed to be able to break this cosmic speed limit?
Galactic collision! The Hubble Space Telescope captured this beautiful look at NGC 3921, a pair of disk galaxies in the late stages of merger. These galaxies, both about the same size, began merging 700 million years ago, as you can see from the distortions, including loops and tails, caused by the merge.
Astronomers call Messier 63 the Sunflower Galaxy, because they say its spiral shape resembles the spiral of seeds at the center of a sunflower.
Astrophysicists at Caltech say they’ve detected the oldest, most distant galaxy known so far. It’s 13.2 billion years old — just over half a billion years younger than the universe itself — and the discovery may change what astrophysicists know about the early history of the universe.
Imagine what our night sky would look like if its stellar density was a million times greater than it is now. Remarkably, such places actually exist: They’re called “Ultracompact Dwarfs,” and astronomers are calling them an entirely new kind of galaxy.
“Space is big,” said Douglas Adams. “You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is.” But why must this be so? And why does our Universe exhibit such tremendous scale, from the very tiny to the extremely large? Here are some possible answers.
Scientists working with the Planck Satellite have produced a new polarization map of the Milky Way in microwaves, providing an unprecedented view of a rather dramatic electromagnetic loop discovered over a half-century ago.
Using NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), astronomers have catalogued 20 previously undetected galaxies that are so bright they belong to an entirely new class of objects, including one that releases 10,000 times more energy than the Milky Way — even though it’s smaller.
The merger of the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxy won’t happen for another 4 billion years, but the recent discovery of a massive halo of hot gas around Andromeda may mean our galaxies are already touching.
Every now and then, astronomers spy a runaway star, one that’s hurling itself across its galaxy at breakneck speeds. But stars aren’t the only things that occasionally go beserker in the cosmic void: Galaxies themselves will sometimes depart home, never to return.
Littered across the cosmos are massive, dead galaxies, containing roughly half the stars in the known Universe. Much about these cosmic graveyards remains a mystery, but a study published yesterday in Science study offers additional insight into their death: They rotted from the inside out.
A pioneering infrared scan of 100,000 galaxies by Penn State astronomers has failed to detect any signs of galaxy-spanning extraterrestrial supercivilizations. This result, though very preliminary, may be a sign that aliens aren't capable of conquering entire galaxies.
Our sun has only been around for 4.5 billion years — which means it missed the cute early years of the Milky Way galaxy. If you were standing on a planet 10 billion years ago, when the Milky Way was relatively young, the night sky would have looked very different.