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Analysis and Comment (8)

Gemini North observatory, on Hawaii’s Mauna Kea, shoots a laser beam into the night sky to create an ‘artificial star’, part of a process that helps astronomers remove blurring from any images of galaxies. Gemini North observatory, on Hawaii’s Mauna Kea, shoots a laser beam into the night sky to create an ‘artificial star’, part of a process that helps astronomers remove blurring from any images of galaxies. Gemini Observatory and Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy

Laser helps find supermassive black hole in a small galaxy

A supermassive black hole has been found in an ultracompact dwarf galaxy – the smallest galaxy known to contain such a massive black hole. This finding, published today in Nature, suggests that supermassive…
The universe still holds many secrets. The universe still holds many secrets. Aaron Landry/Flickr

Cosmic radiation: the dawn of new physics or statistical slip-up?

Recent observations suggest that there is something not quite right with our view of our universe – that something is skewing our view of the oldest radiation arriving at our telescopes. What’s causing…
If there’s a multiverse out there can we see it? If there’s a multiverse out there can we see it? Flickr/Maciek Bielec

Have cosmologists lost their minds in the multiverse?

The recent BICEP2 observations – of swirls in the polarisation of the cosmic microwave background – have been proclaimed as many things, from evidence of the Big Bang and gravitational waves to something…
Graduate student Justus Brevik testing the BICEP2 used to find evidence of cosmic inflation nearly 14 billion years ago. Graduate student Justus Brevik testing the BICEP2 used to find evidence of cosmic inflation nearly 14 billion years ago. EPA/Steffen Richter/Harvard University

First hints of gravitational waves in the Big Bang’s afterglow

Scientists at the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics in the US have announced overnight what they believe is the indirect detection of gravitational waves in the afterglow of the Big Bang. The…
We know gravity waves exist but just haven’t detected any… yet. We know gravity waves exist but just haven’t detected any… yet. www.shutterstock.com

An end in sight in the long search for gravity waves

Our unfolding understanding of the universe is marked by epic searches and we are now on the brink of discovering something that has escaped detection for many years. The search for gravity waves has been…
The oldest star is out there somewhere. But which one is it? The oldest star is out there somewhere. But which one is it? www.shutterstock.com

The oldest star in the universe? Maybe, maybe not!

There is a myth that goldfish have a three-second memory, and I sometimes wonder if the same is true about the part of the human mind that deals with science in the news. This week, the international media…
An explosion in the universe (artist’s impression). An explosion in the universe (artist’s impression). www.shutterstock.com

The oldest star discovery tells much about the early universe

The discovery of an ancient star formed approximately 13.6-billion years ago just after the Big Bang is telling us much about the early universe. The star – designated SMSS J031300.36-670839.3 – lies within…
The made up mysteries of dark matter may now be not needed. The made up mysteries of dark matter may now be not needed. ESO/L. Calçada

New theory of general relativity casts doubt on dark matter

Astronomers have been searching for a mysterious substance called “dark matter” since the 1930s. Most scientists still believe it exists, despite many fruitless decades. Now we propose a new theory of…

Research and News (2)

Research Briefs (4)

Strings of galaxies found in voids

Galaxies arranged in delicate strings have been discovered in the huge, empty regions of the universe called voids. A research…

Catching ancient light

Cosmologists have detected a long sought component in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB), which will help us to further…