Cosmos (category filter × )

Pair of supermassive black holes discovered on a collision course

eurekalert.org
  • 2 supermassive black holes, 2.5 billion light-years from Earth, might help solve a long-standing mystery - the final parsec problem.
  • As their galaxies are merging, gas and stars pass between the black holes, stealing energy - which stops when they get close enough.
  • Theory suggests that they stall at ~1 parsec (~3.2 light-years) apart; it’s unknown how often galaxies merge and if the holes really merge (or ‘waltz’ around each other).
  • During the collision, black holes emit powerful gravitational waves - this pair won’t for 2.5 billion years, but it still helps astronomers find others that emit them.
  • It is predicted there may be ~112 supermassive black holes emitting gravitational waves nearby, which might be detected in the next 5 years.

Another mysterious deep space signal traced to the other side of the universe

cnet.com
  • The past week has been unusually rich in Fast Radio Bursts reaching Earth after travelling billions of years from distant galaxies - some similar to our galaxy.
  • Three different observatories have caught several FRBs all around the world - in Russia, California and Australia.
  • It shows that even a standard galaxy like our Milky Way can generate FRBs, but the real source is a mystery - could be neutron stars, aliens, or something completely different.
  • Astronomers have been noticing FRBs since 2007 thanks to radio telescope observations.
  • As time goes by and more data is collected, researchers might eventually discover what FRBs really are, and how they are created.

Two potentially life-friendly planets found orbiting a nearby star

nationalgeographic.com
  • Two planets similar to the Earth are rotating around the star Teegarden.
  • The star Teegarden has almost twice the age of the sun, therefore life has been able to evolve on these planets in a similar way to what happened in our planetary system.
  • The planets are approximately twelve light years away, according to the data published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics.
  • The astronomers think that these planets can have water and conditions that allow the evolution of life.

Astronomers spot “ridge” of plasma linking galaxy clusters

astronomy.com
  • Two groups of galaxies are merging at a distance of approximately 1000 million light-years from Earth, reveals an article that will be published in the journal Science.
  • Astronomers indicate that the ridge that links the two galaxy clusters, Abell 0399 and Abell 0401, is a filament of hot plasma filled with a diffuse cosmic web of hydrogen.
  • Also, the sensors of the telescopes have detected the existence of magnetic fields and relativistic subatomic particles in the area where Abell 0399 and Abell 0401 are connecting.
  • The intensity of the observed magnetic field is about one million times smaller than the magnetic field of the earth.

From the Lunar far side, China’s rover reveals moon’s hidden depths

scientificamerican.com
  • Chinese scientists publish data on the mission Chang'e-4 that landed in a crater at the south pole of the moon.
  • According to the published information, the lunar mantle is composed mainly of pyroxene and olivine.
  • These chemical elements were detected by means of spectroscopic sensors installed in the spaceship.
  • Researchers expect to confirm this information by analyzing samples that will be brought to earth in a future mission.

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