CNES CoRoT Satellite Suffers Computer Failure

corot-cnes-satellite

The French space agency CNES has announced that the Convection, Rotation and Planetary Transits (CoRoT) satellite is on its last legs.

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Spherical Phase of Planetary Nebula Abell 30

planetary nebula Abell 30

These new images of the planetary nebula Abell 30, which is located 5,500 light-years away from Earth, show one of the clearest views ever obtained of a special phase of evolution for these objects.

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Hubble Views What is Probably the Most Distant Known Galaxy

MACS0647-JD

The galaxy known as MACS0647-JD is located behind an enormous galactic cluster MACS J0647+7015 that lies between the Big and Little Dipper. Data shows that MACS0647-JD is probably the most distant galaxy ever seen.

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Hawaiian Solar Observatory Granted Construction Permit

atst-solar-telescope

The world’s largest solar telescope will finally be built atop Haleakala, the dormant volcano that is the highest peak on the island of Maui.

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The Brightest Flare Ever Observed from Sagittarius A*

sagittarius-A-flare-black-hole

The supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, Sagittarius A*, emits relatively little energy for its size, as much energy as Sol even though it’s 4 billion times as massive.

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12 Billion-Year Old Supernova Discovered by Astronomers

superluminous-supernova

Astronomers have discovered a pair superluminous supernovae, which are more than 10 billion years old. The Universe was only 3.75 billion years old back then. Of the pair, one is more remote and ranks as the most distant supernova ever discovered.

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Presence of Asteroid Belts & Gas Giants In Systems Key to Finding Extra-Solar Life

asteroid-belt-indicate-life
Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech

According to the theory of punctuated equilibrium, evolution will go faster when life has to make rapid changes to survive in challenging environments. Life with an asteroid belt in system can be quite varied and dramatic. Multi-cellular life might need an asteroid belt to provide the right number of hits to spur on evolution.

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