Physics & Astronomy News

<p>ESA Astronauts training in terrestrial lava tubes in Lanzarote during the PANGEA 2016 course. Credit: ESA/L. Ricci</p>
Lava Tubes: Human Habitats on the Moon and Mars?
Lava tubes, underground caves created by volcanic activity, could provide protected habitats large enough to house streets on Mars or even towns on the Moon.
<p>PR Image heic1715a</p>

<p>The binary asteroid 288P (artist’s impression)</p>
Hubble Discovers a Unique Type of Object in the Solar System
Astronomers have observed the intriguing characteristics of an unusual type of object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.

<p>Professor Kyoung Jin Choi (left) and Yeon Soo Jung (right) are examining a wearable TEG. As shown right, the output voltage of the W-STEG attached to clothes was measured to be 52.3 mV.</p>
Wearable Solar Thermoelectric Generator
UNIST has introduced a new advanced energy harvesting system, capable of generating electricity by simply being attached to clothes, windows, and outer walls of a building.
<p>How Gravity Can Bend Starlight</p>

<p>This illustration reveals how the gravity of a white dwarf star warps space and bends the light of a distant star behind it.</p>

<p>White dwarfs are the burned-out remnants of normal stars. The Hubble Space Telescope captured images of the dead star, called Stein 2051 B, as it passed in front of a background star. During the close alignment, Stein 2051 B deflected the starlight, which appeared offset by about 2 milliarcseconds from its actual position. This deviation is so small that it is equivalent to observing an ant crawl across the surface of a quarter from 1,500 miles away. From this measurement, astronomers calculated that the white dwarf's mass is roughly 68 percent of the sun's mass.</p>

<p>Stein 2051 B resides 17 light-years from Earth. The background star is about 5,000 light-years away. The white dwarf is named for its discoverer, Dutch Roman Catholic priest and astronomer Johan Stein.</p>
Observation confirms Einsteins general theory of relativity.
Astronomers have used NASA Hubble Space Telescope to repeat a century-old test of Einsteins general theory of relativity

Gravitational Wave Kicks Monster Black Hole Out of Galactic Core
Astronomers have uncovered a supermassive black hole that has been propelled out of the center of a distant galaxy by what could be the awesome power of gravitational waves.
Milky Way-like Galaxies in Early Universe Embedded in 'Super Halos'
By harnessing the extreme sensitivity of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), astronomers have directly observed a pair of Milky Way-like galaxies seen when the universe was only eight percent of its current age.
Finding the 'Ghost Particles' Might be More Challenging
Results from the NEOS experiment on sterile neutrinos differ partly from the theoretical expectations.

Science Facts

The Early Universe Soup

by Anton Skorucak and

Collision of two gold nuclei at the RHIC accelerator. An attempt to produce quark-gluon plasma in the laboratory.: Brookhaven National Laboratory/RHIC-PHENIX In the first few millionths of the second after the Big Bang, the universe looked very different than today. In fact the universe existed as a different form of matter altogether: the quark-gluon plasma or QGP, a weird 'soup' of quarks and gluons buzzing around frantically at temperatures of over 1,000,000,000,000 degrees.

Quarks are tiny particles (approximately same in size to electrons) which make up protons, neutrons and other so called 'hadron' particles. Just like photons are 'force carrier' particles for the electro-magnetic force, gluons are force carrier particles for the strong force. The strong force is the strongest force in the universe and is responsible for keeping the quarks 'glued' together inside protons and neutrons. The strong force is actually so strong that no one has even succeeded in separating individual quarks, they always come in pairs of two or three.

Immediately after the Big Bang the temperature was so high that it overpowered the gluons and freed the quarks to buzz around. The result was a dense 'soup' of free quarks and gluons; the quark-gluon plasma. This plasma quickly disappeared as the universe cooled. In fact, the QGP was gone within the first hundred-thousandth of a second when the gluons started 'trapping' all the quarks into hadrons (process called hadronization). After the first second or so the first nuclei started forming from those hadrons, and it took almost a billion years for the first atoms to form. Believe it or not, humans are trying to reproduce this QGP in the laboratory! A project called Phenix at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island is trying to produce QGP by smashing particles at extreme speeds inside an accelerator called RHIC (Relativisting Heavy Ion Collider). The early universe soup may be soon served at Brookhaven, back by popular demand after being forgotten for billions and billions of years!

Comet Borrelly as Seen By Deep Space 1
Stars With Long Hair

Throughout history, people have been both awed and alarmed by comets, stars with 'long hair' that appeared in the sky unannounced and unpredictably. We now know that comets are dirty-ice leftovers fro ...
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Artist Rendition of Pluto, its moon Charon and spacecraft.
Pluto: Beyond Neptune Or Not?

Did I catch you? Pluto (newly classified as a dwarf-planet) comes after planet Neptune. Right? Depends. Pluto takes 248 years to orbit the Sun. Most of that time Pluto's orbit puts it outside the orbi ...
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The content of this article has been delivered to you via internet fiber-optic links. Today most phone conversations, fax transmissions and almost all internet and email traffic travel at the speed of ...
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Science Quote

'Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.'

Albert Einstein

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