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  • A Giant Stellar Void in the Milky Way

    A major revision is required in our understanding of our Milky Way Galaxy according to an international team led by Prof Noriyuki Matsunaga of the University of Tokyo. The Japanese, South African and Italian astronomers find that there is a huge region ar...
  • 'Particles' to celebrate 200th anniversary of Royal Astronomical Society

    The National Eisteddfod of Wales, held at Abergavenny from 29 July until 6 August, will host the Sun and stars. Cheek by jowl with a political party on one side and a writers’ group on the other, will be a sensory installation of light, colour, optics a...
  • Jupiter’s Great Red Spot heats planet’s upper atmosphere

    Researchers from Boston University's (BU) Center for Space Physics report today (27 July) in Nature that Jupiter's Great Red Spot may provide the mysterious source of energy required to heat the planet's upper atmosphere to the unusually high values obser...
  • AutoLens Analysis Steps Up for Euclid’s 100 000 Strong Gravitational Lens Challenge

      The European Space Agency’s Euclid satellite, due for launch in 2020, will set astronomers a huge challenge: to analyse one hundred thousand strong gravitational lenses. The gravitational deflection of light from distant astronomical sources by ...
  • Deepest Ever Look into Orion

    Astronomers have unveiled the deepest view yet of the heart of the Orion Nebula. The scientists used the HAWK-I infrared instrument, deployed on the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile, part of the European Southern Observatory (ESO), to create the specta...
  • OUR BEAUTIFUL UNIVERSE: Time-lapse Crab

    The Crab Nebula. (NASA and ESA, J Hester [ASU] and M Weisskopf [NASA/GSFC])  This new Hubble Heritage image of the Crab nebula supernova remnant combines images taken in different wavelengths and at different times to give an impression of the evolu...
  • Astronomers find evidence for 'direct collapse' black hole

    Astronomers Aaron Smith and Volker Bromm of The University of Texas at Austin, working with Avi Loeb of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, have discovered evidence for an unusual kind of black hole born extremely early in the universe. They ...
  • RAS statement on the outcome of the EU referendum

    The referendum on 23 June on membership of the United Kingdom in the European Union resulted in a vote to leave. Although the RAS made no formal recommendation to its members, evidence from groups like the Campaign for Science and Engineering suggests th...
  • Accelerating research into dark energy

    A quick method for making accurate, virtual universes to help understand the effects of dark matter and dark energy has been developed by scientists at University College London and the Aragon Centre for Cosmological Studies (CEFCA) in Spain. Making up 95...
  • Earth-size telescope tracks the aftermath of a star being swallowed by a supermassive black hole

    Radio astronomers have used a radio telescope network the size of the Earth to zoom in on a unique phenomenon in a distant galaxy: a jet activated by a star being consumed by a supermassive black hole. The record-sharp observations reveal a compact and su...
  • ALMA discovers dew drops surrounding dusty spider’s web

    Astronomers have spotted glowing droplets of condensed water in the distant Spiderweb Galaxy – but not where they expected to find them. Detections with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) show that the water is located far out in th...
  • Gravitational lens zooms in on why some quasars have the radio turned down

    Mini-jets of material ejected from a central supermassive black hole appear to be the culprits behind faint radio wave emissions in ‘radio-quiet’ quasars. A study of gravitationally-lensed images of four radio-quiet quasars has revealed the structure ...
  • In the blink of a cosmic eye: chance microlensing events probe galactic cores

    Some galaxies pump out vast amounts of energy from a very small volume of space, typically not much bigger than our own solar system. The cores of these galaxies, so called Active Galactic Nuclei or AGNs, are often hundreds of millions or e...
  • It’s not easy being green – what colours tell us about galaxy evolution

    Scientists may have answered why green galaxies are rare in our universe and why their colour could reveal a troubled past. Their research is presented today (Thursday 30 June) at the National Astronomy Meeting at the University of Nottingham. ...
  • Space Team Discovers Universe is Self-Cleaning

    An international team of astronomers today (29 June) released a gazetteer of the hidden universe, which reveals the unseen sources of energy found over the last 12 billion years of cosmic history. Professor Haley Gomez of Cardiff University pres...
  • Seeds of first supermassive black holes could be revealed by gravitational waves detected in space

    Gravitational waves captured by space-based detectors could help identify the origins of supermassive black holes, according to new computer simulations of the Universe. Scientists led by Durham University’s Institute for Computational Cosmology ran the...
  • Meet RobERt, the dreaming detective for exoplanet atmospheres

    Machine-learning techniques that mimic human recognition and dreaming processes are being deployed in the search for habitable worlds beyond our solar system. A deep belief neural network, called RobERt (Robotic Exoplanet Recognition), has been developed ...
  • Glorious, glowing Jupiter awaits Juno’s arrival

    Stunning new images and the highest-resolution maps to date of Jupiter at thermal infrared wavelengths give a glowing view of Juno’s target, a week ahead of the NASA mission’s arrival at the giant planet. The maps reveal the present-day temperatures, ...
  • CR7 is not alone: a team of super bright galaxies in the early Universe

    Astronomers have identified a family of incredible galaxies that could shed further light on the transformation of the early Universe known as the ‘epoch of reionisation’. Dr David Sobral of Lancaster University will present their results on...
  • Opal discovered in Antarctic meteorite

    Planetary scientists have discovered pieces of opal in a meteorite found in Antarctica, a result that demonstrates that meteorites delivered water ice to asteroids early in the history of the solar system. Led by Professor Hilary Downes&nbs...
  • ACT now to track solar eruptions in 3D!

    Scientists at Aberystwyth University have developed an automated method for three-dimensional tracking of massive eruptions from the Sun, called Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs). The Automated CME Triangulation (ACT) system uses data from three space-based o...
  • Minor mergers are major drivers of star formation

    Around half of the star formation in the local Universe arises from minor mergers between galaxies, according to data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. The patch of sky called Stripe 82 is observed repeatedly to produce high-quality images ofspiral galax...
  • Drones to keep tabs on light pollution

    Astronomers at Nottingham Trent University have developed a light, low cost system, deployable on a drone, that could help everyone monitor and control light pollution. The team, led by undergraduate student Ashley Fuller, present their wor...
  • Astronomers release spectacular survey of the distant Universe

    Astronomers today (28 June) released spectacular new infrared images of the distant Universe, providing the deepest view ever obtained over a large area of sky. The team, led by Prof Omar Almaini, present their results at the National Astronomy ...
  • Black holes and the prospects for measuring gravitational waves

    The supermassive black holes found at the centre of every galaxy, including our own Milky Way, may, on average, be smaller than we thought, according to work led by University of Southampton astronomer Dr Francesco Shankar. If he and his colleagues are ri...