Astronomy news

Comet Asteroid

At ... a comet that became an asteroid. Comet Blanpain was first seen and recorded in 1819 - but subsequently disappeared. In 2003 astronomers discovered a small asteroid still orbiting along the former path of the comet - which appears to be the gassed out core of the comet. The gas and dust that was left behind by the comet is still there - the Phoenicid meteor shower (from the constellation Phoenix).

x-ray supernovae

At ... scientists have detected x-rays from what appears to be a type 1a supernova. Exploding stars are an interesting phenomenon and we are told astrophysicists do not fully understand them. Astronomers like supernovae as they are thought to be caused when a white dwarf star undergoes a thermonuclear explosion, as they have a high degree of brightness. This allows them to calculate how far away from Earth they are and aid in the mapping of the universe. However, not all supernovae play ball ... ....

Mars Bow Shock

At ... solar EUV (ultra violet radiation) is an important feature of the solar wind. As energetic particles of the solar wind cross space inside the solar system they are modified by cosmic objects in their path - including the planets. This pieces is also derived from PhysOrg we may note but the comments are interesting. Scientists already are aware of the bow shock, upstream of planets - like the bow of a ship (the waves that rises up at the side and behind).

House Size asteroid

At ... a house sized asteroid will whizz past the Earth on October 12th, we are told, well within the orbit of the Moon and not too far from the orbit of satellites going around the Earth. It will pass by at a distance of 27,300 miles, an eighth of the distance from Earth to Moon.

Millions of black holes

At ... there are a lot more black holes in the Milky Way than previously thought according to a University of California Irvine study. There are in the order of tens of millions in our galaxy alone - and we once thought there was just one big black hole in the galaxy centre - somewhat like the black liquorice surrounded by pink or yellow coconut in a Bassets Liquorice Allsorts. There might even be as many as 100 million of the black holes - so how does this abundance square with mainstream black hole theory?

Water on the Moon

At ... that scientists think they have found evidence of water in the interior of the Moon. The origin of water in the interior is a mystery - see ... is derived from satellite data and the idea water can be found in the interior of the Moon raises some interresting questions about the formation of the Moon, on the one hand, and how much water is in the solar system.

Jupiter Aurora

At ... which is posed as an unusual occurrence but presented as Jupiter revealing itself as a planet on steroids - see also ... where the blog post is derived. Jupiter's aurorae get weirder than ever, we are told. The Juno mission's recent images of the Great Red Spot may be spectacular but in June Juno flew over the poles of Jupiter and detected electrically charged particles flying upwards.

water worlds

At ... you have heard of the Expanding Earth thoery - now we have expanding galaxies. Einstien's theory of gravity. it begins. may have to be re-written after researchers at St Andrews University in Scotland found a gigantic ring of galaxies moving away from each other at a much faster rate than the theory allows.


At ... researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder have been investigating the mysterious geology of Mars - the smooth landscape in the north as opposed to the cratered high elevation in the south. They are suggesting a colossal impact with an asteroid was the most likely cause, ripping a chunk out of its northern hemisphere and creating a ring of rocky debris around Mars that may later have clumped together to form the moons, Phobos and Deimos. This idea is not new and a similar asteroid impact theory was touted over 30 years ago.

solar quiet

At ... two researchers from Aberystwyth University in Wales have used data from NASAs Solar Dynamics Observatory to look at the quiet sides of the solar corona. Most research has centred on the more active central band of the solar sphere where sun spots are more likely to occur. One thing the researchers wee looking at was extreme ultraviolet irradiance (EUV)  and they expected big differences betwen the quiet side and the active hot spots.