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Nearby Starburst Surprises Scientists By Having Way Too Many Massive Stars

Our Milky Way galaxy isn’t alone in this corner of space—it’s orbited by a few smaller dwarf galaxies, including the Large Magellanic Cloud. Inside that cloud is 30 Doradus (or the Tarantula Nebula), a “starburst” where stars are formed at a much higher rate than the surrounding area. And 30 Doradus has too many massive stars. Read More >>

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This Spectacular Stargazing Video Makes Me Want to Move Far Away From Big City Lights

Sure, the restaurants are great. But the bright lights of a big city mean that at night you can rarely see more than a few stars in the sky, and these stunning timelapses of the galaxy overhead will make you realise the spectacular show you’re missing every evening. Read More >>

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Blinking Star Appears to Be Devouring Its Own Planetary Offspring

550 light years from here is a star very much like our own, except that it has a strange habit of blinking out at irregular intervals. This erratic dimming, according to a new study, could be caused by clumps of orbiting gas and dust—the possible remnants of a planetary catastrophe. Read More >>

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New Intergalactic Discovery Could Be Biggest Supernova Ever

The Earth, the Sun, Andromeda galaxy, they’ve all been around for as long as you can remember and as long as humanity has been around. So when a new light suddenly shows up in the distance, it’s a weird occurrence. But a newly detected explosion could be one of the weirdest—and it’s not the only one. Read More >>

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Mind-Bogglingly Detailed Image of a Nearby Star Introduces an Unexpected Mystery

There are few downsides to new observations, but confusion might be one of them. New stellar images bring mysteries that will take more time and effort to understand. That’s offset by how freaking detailed scientists can start producing these pictures, and of course, scientists like hearing that there’s more work to do. Read More >>

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This Real World ‘Space Opera’ Lets You Become the Hubble Telescope

It’s easy to feel small and insignificant in the grandiose scope of the universe, because we are. At the same time, as Carl Sagan once reminded us, we’re made of the same “star stuff” as the cosmos. All too often, we forget how random, ridiculous, and resplendent it is to part of the stellar sorority of the universe. That’s why art, specifically movies like Eliza McNitt’s Fistful of Stars, is important—it reacquaints us with humanity’s small and stupid and somehow very special place in the cosmos. Read More >>

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Scientists Think They’ve Figured Out Where Bizarre Runaway Stars Are Coming From

The Sun and Proxima Centauri and most of the stars you’ve heard of orbit the centre of the Milky Way galaxy like children peacefully riding a carousel (with some weirdness caused by dark matter that we don’t need to get into). Now, imagine if a few toddlers were sprinting and shrieking across the peaceful scene. Who sent these nightmares? In the case of stars, scientists think they could have come from another galaxy. Read More >>

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This Could Be the Most Detailed Image of a Distant Star Yet

Orion is the Beyonce of constellations. Pretty much everyone has heard of it and seen it (you can even see it in New York despite the light pollution). It’s hard not to like it. And if you spend some time studying its behaviour and meaning, you’ll only appreciate its intricacies even more. Read More >>

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This New Hubble Image Has Nothing to Do With Guardians of the Galaxy

On Thursday, May 4th, Hubble dropped a “cute” press release comparing a new image of a galaxy cluster to the Marvel movie Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2. It was a timely yet mega-dad corny way to make the image of the galaxy cluster Abell 370 seem relevant. While there’s literally no connection between the James Gunn movie and the galaxy cluster, located roughly 4 billion light years away, that didn’t stop literally everyone from trying to make this A Thing. Read More >>

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An Airline Pilot Captured This Beautiful Timelapse Footage of the Milky Way

As a passenger on an aeroplane, it’s not easy to shoot footage from your plane’s tiny window. But when you’re the pilot, with a large window to watch the night sky, you it’s possible to capture some amazing aerial footage of the Milky Way. Read More >>

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This Mind-Blowing Stellar Explosion Is a Beautiful Mess

When it comes to cool space pictures, supernovae get all the credit. After all, who doesn’t love a good star death? But new images from the Atacama Large Millimetre/submillimetre Array (ALMA) in Chile reveal a stunning star birth that gives those supernova snaps a run for their money. It looks just like a firework, and now I have that godforsaken song stuck in my head, because the internet has rotted my brain. Read More >>

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These Stars Had the Messiest Divorce in the Galaxy

The marital feuds of strangers have long intrigued our degenerate species. It’s a timeless topic that keeps several magazines afloat, even if literally none of the details are true. But what most don’t know is that celebrities (and commoners) aren’t the only ones who get divorced—sometimes, actual stars do, too. Read More >>

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Black Holes May Be Way More Murderous Than We Realised

Don’t get me wrong, black holes are cool but they’re also giant voids of terror: these gravitational abysses have been known to snack on stars in occurrences called Tidal Disruption Events (TDEs). It’s always the same horror story — an unsuspecting star wanders too close to a black hole, only to get ripped apart by the black hole’s gravity. Isn’t space pleasant? Read More >>

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An Enormous Exoplanet Is Having a Strange Influence on Its Star

There’s a star about 370 light-years from here that’s pulsating in response to its unusually heavy planetary companion. It’s the first time that astronomers have seen this sort of interaction between a planet and its host star. Read More >>

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Scientists Need Your Help Discovering the Next Exoplanet

Calling all space cadets: Today, a group of researchers led by the Carnegie Institute of Science released an impressive database containing 61,000 so-called Doppler velocity measurements of 1,600 nearby stars. The team is graciously inviting you to use their data to find the next exoplanet. Go forth and become drunk with power. Read More >>