Heavens above!

Heavens above!

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The density of gas in and around a simulated galaxy just over a billion years after the Big Bang. New gas is arriving at too great a rate for the galaxy to convert it into stars and the gas piles up. Alan Duffy/Swinburne University

The Great Galactic Recession

In the early Universe torrents of infalling gas outpace the ability of young galaxies to raise their demand of forming new stars to meet the supply, the result is a recession for the galactic economy.
Science and technology have helped us picture that we all live together on a single world. NASA / Bill Anders

Step up for science at the crossroads for humanity

Our world faces enormous challenges that will only be solved by more science not less but scientists can't do it alone.
The Stargazing Live promotional banner aims to get Australians looking up. After they’ve watched the show of course. ABC

Outreach - why reach out?

Making science a ratings grab is a key part of reversing its declines in society and schools.
Galaxy cluster MACS 0416 bends light around it due to huge amounts of dark matter, indicated in cyan, acting as a magnifying lens for any background objects in the magenta regions. STScI/NASA/CATS Team/R. Livermore (UT Austin)

Baby galaxies light up the universe

Ingenious use of a naturally occurring cosmic magnifying glass suggests baby galaxies are a leading culprit for bringing light to our Universe's darkest moment.
The annular solar eclipse of 4th January 2011 as seen by the Hinode satellite. The Moon is slightly more distant from Earth than in a total eclipse allowing a ring of sunlight to appear around the dark shadow of the Moon. NASA/Hinode/XRT

8 space reasons to look up in 2017

Meteor showers, eclipses, epic space missions and more, 2017 will be worth looking up for.
The gas giant Saturn revealed in all its splendour by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. This vantage point revealed the hexagonal storm raging on the pole as well as the innermost rings surrounding the planet. NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Thanksgiving space dinners, threading Saturn’s rings and impossible warp drives

Fuel-less rockets, Thanksgiving space-treats and threading an interplanetary needle, space never gets dull.
False colour image of Mercury taken by NASA’s MESSENGER spacecraft. Without a hot central core this should be a geologically dead world yet recent images suggest it’s still active. NASA/JHUAPL/Carnegie Institution of Washington/USGS/Arizona State University

Shrinking Mercury is all it’s cracked up to be

A tectonically active world means Mercury might share another feature with Earth, Mercury-quakes!
A Hubble Space Telescope image of the Frontier Field, an area of the sky containing the galaxy cluster Abell S1063. NASA / ESA and J. Lotz (STScl)

Hubble explores the Final Frontier

The Frontier Field seen by Hubble has a galaxy cluster which acts as a natural lens, magnifying even more distant galaxies into view from just several hundred million years after the Big Bang.
The core of the Crab Nebula reveals outflowing material, powered by the central neutron star. This is a timelapse of Hubble Space Telescope images taken each decade and coloured separately revealing the rainbow pattern as the fast moving material changes between frames. NASA / ESA

Beating heart of the Crab Nebula

The beautiful image from Hubble hides a monster at its heart, as rainbow-coloured winds are blown outwards by the tremendous energies of a neutron star.
The THAICOM 8 launch by SpaceX’s Falcon 9, successfully taking the telecommunications satellite into orbit and then landing the first stage on a barge at sea. SpaceX

Here’s what happened in space this week

From inflatable space stations to space sweeteners, it’s been an amazing week in space but none so visually astounding as the video from SpaceX of their 3rd successful landing at sea. Three perfect landings…