Habitability within our Galaxy – Could complex life exist elsewhere?

A team of researchers has presented a new model of habitability within the Milky Way. According to their calculations, more than one in every hundred stars may have planets capable of supporting complex life within our Galaxy. Their results will be published in the journal Astrobiology.
Astronomers generally focus on exoplanets orbiting stars …

Through the looking glass – A cosmic parity violation?

Astrophysicists have always assumed that our Universe has a “mirror” symmetry. Researchers are now trying to test this assumption, and their first results show that our Universe might not be exactly as expected.
In a Universe with a mirror symmetry, the image of a counter-clockwise rotating galaxy is a galaxy with …

Astronomy Quiz #2

Here is the new astronomy quiz! A lot of you answered the previous one, and as I wrote last week, I’ll post a new quiz regularly. I hope you will enjoy this one too, and don’t hesitate to give me some feedback and comments so that I can keep improving these quizzes!

Epic galactic storms shut down star formation

ESA’s Herschel Space Observatory has found gigantic storms of molecular gas gusting in the centers of many galaxies. These powerful storms, driven by star formation and central black holes, are strong enough to halt the mechanisms that produced them in the first place.
Some of these massive outflows can reach extremely …

An extremely old galaxy challenges theory

Astronomers have discovered a distant galaxy whose stars were born unexpectedly early in our Universe’s history. The observation, which would have been impossible without a cosmic gravitational lens, sheds new light on the formation of the first galaxies as well as on the evolution of the early Universe.
Clusters of galaxies …

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