Astronomy

The Mystery Of The Exploding Star

The Mystery Of The Exploding Star

In addition to sporting the heavy mass of 130 to 250 times that of our Sun, candidate progenitor stars for pair-instability supernovae must also have slow to moderate rotation rates, as well as a very low metallicity. Low metallicity means that the candidate progenitor star for such special, catastrophic, and weird supernovae must be made up almost entirely of hydrogen and …

Stellar Ghosts Haunt Stars

Stellar Ghosts Haunt Stars

Observing Type Ia supernovae must be accomplished quickly. This is because they flare into existence, and then dim to darkness, within only a few months. In order to study supernovae that have long since faded, and the stellar white dwarf ghosts that created them, Dr. Kirby and his colleagues used a technique informally named galactic archaeology. The term galactic archaeology refers to …

Matter Gone Missing

Matter Gone Missing

The Universe is thought to have been born about 13.8 billion years ago in the form of an exquisitely small searing-hot broth composed of densely packed particles–generally simply referred to as “the fireball.” Spacetime has been growing colder and colder ever since, as it expands–and accelerates as it expands–from its original furiously hot and glaringly …

Precious Red Nugget Galaxies

Precious Red Nugget Galaxies

Red Nuggets are small galaxies that are packed with a large number of red stars that were originally detected by the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) back in 2005. They are very ancient relics of the first massive galaxies. The environment of red nuggets is generally consistent with that of elliptical galaxies. Most red nuggets have …