Universe Today 11 Feb 2021, 19:28 UTC We’ve learned a thing or two about exoplanets in the past several years. One of the more surprising discoveries is that our solar system is rather unusual. The Sun’s worlds are easily divided into small rocky planets and large gas giants. Exoplanets are much more diverse, both in size and composition.
Starts With a Bang! 11 Feb 2021, 15:01 UTC The inevitable long, slow decline is accelerating, and there’s nothing we can do.
Bad Astronomy 11 Feb 2021, 14:00 UTC A team of astronomers has found… well, something near one of the stars of Alpha Centauri that is consistent with it being a planet, possibly around the size of Neptune. However, to be very clear, it's not proven yet — it could be a dust cloud or it could even not be real at all.
Discover 10 Feb 2021, 17:49 UTC As far as cosmologists can tell, space is almost perfectly flat. But what does this mean?
Universe Today 10 Feb 2021, 14:59 UTC Water ice, especially any located in the sub-surface, has long been a focal point of Mars exploration efforts. Reasons abound as to why – from the need to grow plants to the need to create more rocket fuel to blast off the planet for a round trip. Most of that effort has focused on the poles of the planet, where most of the water ice has been found.
Universe Today 9 Feb 2021, 15:34 UTC We don’t know what dark matter is. We do know what it isn’t, and that’s a problem. Matter is made of elementary particles, from the quarks and electrons that make up atoms and molecules, to primordial neutrinos spread throughout the cosmos. But none of the known elementary particles can comprise dark matter, so what is it?
Centauri Dreams 8 Feb 2021, 17:04 UTC Interesting things happen to stars after they’ve left the main sequence. So-called Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) stars are those less than nine times the mass of the Sun that have already moved through their red giant phase. They’re burning an inner layer of helium and an outer layer of hydrogen, multiple zones surrounding an inert carbon-oxygen core. Some of these stars, cooling and expanding, begin to condense dust in their outer envelopes and to pulsate, producing a ‘wind’ off the surface of the star that effectively brings an end to hydrogen burning.