Astronaut.com 13 Sep 2019, 11:15 UTC If you could pack a hot air balloon onto an interstellar spaceship and travel 110 light years to a certain planet orbiting a dim star in the constellation Leo, you’d have an experience not entirely unlike ballooning on Earth. The temperature, pressure, and moist air could feel quite pleasant, though you’d need an oxygen mask—and possibly an umbrella.
Universe Today 13 Sep 2019, 07:33 UTC Hubble has captured a new image of Saturn that makes you wonder if it’s even real. The image is so crisp it makes it look like Saturn is just floating in space. Which it is. This image of the ringed-planet was captured when Saturn was at its closest to Earth, some 1.36 billion km away (845 million miles) on June 20th, 2019. The crisp image was captured with Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3.)
Universe Today 13 Sep 2019, 07:22 UTC Astronomers have found a supermassive black hole (SMBH) with an unusually regular feeding schedule. The behemoth is an active galactic nucleus (AGN) at the heart of the Seyfert 2 galaxy GSN 069. The AGN is about 250 million light years from Earth, and contains about 400,000 times the mass of the Sun.
astrobites 12 Sep 2019, 13:00 UTC The fundamental constituents of galaxies are stars, gas, dust, black holes, and dark matter. The extent to which we understand each of them and their interplay varies greatly. Yet current understanding drives us to acknowledge that the growth of the mass of galaxies must be driven by either active star-formation, galaxy-galaxy mergers, or both. But which of these two effects dominates is an ongoing mystery nearly as old as the discovery of galaxies themselves.
Scientific American 12 Sep 2019, 10:45 UTC As the fourth anniversary of the first detection approaches, the field continues to mature—with a bright future ahead
Universe Today 11 Sep 2019, 23:32 UTC In 2017, LIGO (Laser-Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory) and Virgo detected gravitational waves coming from the merger of two neutron stars. They named that signal GW170817. Two seconds after detecting it, NASA’s Fermi satellite detected a gamma ray burst (GRB) that was named GRB170817A. Within minutes, telescopes and observatories around the world honed in on the event.
New Scientist 11 Sep 2019, 18:42 UTC Astronomers have spotted a comet that appears to have come from outside our solar system, which would make it the second interstellar object we’ve detected. Plus, it’s headed toward Earth, which will make it easier to study than the previous interstellar rock. It will approach Earth in December, but will get nowhere near close enough to hit us.