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Articles on Telescope

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The mirror on the James Webb Space Telescope is fully aligned and producing incredibly sharp images, like this test image of a star. NASA/STScI via Flickr

The James Webb Space Telescope is finally ready to do science – and it’s seeing the universe more clearly than even its own engineers hoped for

It has taken eight months to test and calibrate all of the instruments and modes of the James Webb Space Telescope. A scientist on the team explains what it took to get Webb up and running.
Scientists think there are 300 million habitable planets in the Milky Way, and some may be home to intelligent life. Bruno Gilli/ESO

Blasting out Earth’s location with the hope of reaching aliens is a controversial idea – two teams of scientists are doing it anyway

This year, two groups of astronomers plan to send messages containing information about humans and the location of Earth toward parts of space they think may be home to intelligent life.
Some stars travel at high speeds through the universe and sometimes leave spectacular clouds of dust and gas in their wake. NASA, ESA and R. Sahai (NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory)

Real shooting stars exist, but they aren’t the streaks you see in a clear night sky

Hypervelocity stars were discovered only 15 years ago and are the closest things in existence to real shooting stars. They travel at millions of miles per hour, so fast that they can escape from galaxies.
It can stretch your mind to ponder what’s really out there. Stijn Dijkstra/EyeEm via Getty Images

Does outer space end – or go on forever?

Astronomers know a lot about what’s in outer space – and think it’s possible it never ends.
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The best gift in the galaxy: an astronomer’s guide to buying a home telescope

There’s an extensive range of telescopes, mounts and accessories on the market, and trying to pick from it might have you seeing stars. Here’s what the experts suggest.
With the proper equipment, you can enjoy the beauty of the night sky. Allexxandar via iStock/GettyImages

5 ways families can enjoy astronomy during the pandemic

COVID-19 may have messed up school and shut down a lot of entertainment venues. But you can still brighten things up by doing a little stargazing at night, an astronomer says.
Diligence, technological progress and a little luck have together solved a 20 year mystery of the cosmos. CSIRO/Alex Cherney

Half the matter in the universe was missing – we found it hiding in the cosmos

Cosmologists had only been able to find half the matter that should exist in the universe. With the discovery of a new astronomical phenomenon and new telescopes, researchers just found the rest.
Today we hear about some of the fascinating space research underway at Siding Spring Observatory – and how, despite gruelling hours and endless paperwork, astronomers retain their sense of wonder for the night sky. Shutterstock

‘The size, the grandeur, the peacefulness of being in the dark’: what it’s like to study space at Siding Spring Observatory

‘The size, the grandeur, the peacefulness of being in the dark’: what it’s like to study space at Siding Spring Observatory. The Conversation, CC BY54.3 MB (download)
Three hours north-east of Parkes lies a remote astronomical research facility, unpolluted by city lights, where researchers are trying to unlock some of the biggest questions about our Universe.
A view from CSIRO’s Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) radio telescope antenna 29, with the phased array feed receiver in the centre, Southern Cross on the left and the Moon on the right. CSIRO/Alex Cherney

How we closed in on the location of a fast radio burst in a galaxy far, far away

For the first time scientists have located the home galaxy of a one-off fast radio burst. Here’s how they did it – and what they learned about the galaxy.

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