Life exists in a myriad of wondrous forms, but if you break any organism down to its most basic parts, it's all the same stuff: carbon atoms connected to hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and other elements. But how these fundamental substances are created in space has been a longstanding mystery.
For years, astronomers have puzzled over a massive star lodged deep in the Milky Way that shows conflicting signs of being extremely old and extremely young. Researchers initially classified the star as elderly, perhaps a red supergiant. But a new study by a NASA-led team of researchers suggests that the object, labeled IRAS 19312+1950, might be something quite different -- a protostar, a star still in the making.
ESA's Herschel mission releases today a series of unprecedented maps of star-forming hubs in the plane of our Milky Way galaxy. This is accompanied by a set of catalogues listing hundreds of thousands of compact sources that span all phases leading to the birth of stars in our Galaxy.
The Herschel and Planck project teams are this year's recipients of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Space Systems Award.
Our Sun missed the stellar "baby boom" that erupted in our young Milky Way galaxy 10 billion years ago. During that time the Milky Way was churning out stars 30 times faster than it does today. Our galaxy was ablaze with a firestorm of star birth as its rich reservoir of hydrogen gas compressed under gravity, creating myriad stars. But our Sun was not one of them. It was a late "boomer," arising 5 billion years later, when star birth had plunged to a trickle.
Astronomers mine data from the Planck and Herschel missions to find a treasure chest of galaxy clusters.
Once again, more than 50 teachers, students and astronomy educators from the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program will be attending the winter meeting of the American Astronomical Society, running from January 3 through January 7 in Grapevine, Texas.
Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek announced that a coalition of the world’s leading space science and astronomical institutions based in Pasadena are partnering to produce Astronomy Week, October 16-22, 2016. The week-long series of public events, open houses, lectures and other activities celebrates Pasadena’s rich history as an innovative “City of Astronomy.”
The Palomar Transient Factory and IPAC announces the Third Data Release (DR3). This release adds to DR1 and DR2 by including selected g- and R-band data obtained from January 1, 2013 through January 28, 2015.
The Infrared Processing and Analysis Center at Caltech announces the availability of six-month graduate student fellowships beginning in the Spring of 2017. The program is designed to allow students from other institutions to visit IPAC-Caltech and perform astronomical research in close association with an IPAC staff member during Spring 2017.
More than 50 teachers, students and astronomy educators from the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP) will be attending the winter meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS).
Nine NITARP alumni educators, some of their current students, and a student alumna have all returned this year to AAS, paying their own way to attend the international conference.