In 2019, the MAGIC telescopes detected the first Gamma Ray Burst at very high energies. This was the most intense gamma-radiation ever obtained from such a cosmic object. But the GRB data have more to offer: with further analyses, the MAGIC scientists could now confirm that the speed of light is constant in vacuum - and not dependent on energy. So, like many other tests, GRB data also corroborate Einstein's theory of General Relativity. The study has now been published in Physical Review Letters.
Using Kyoto University's new 3.8M Seimei Telescope, in collaboration with the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, astronomers succeeded in detecting 12 stellar flare phenomena on AD Leonis. One of these flares was 20 times larger than those emitted by our own sun, categorizing it a 'superflare'. Subsequent data analysis presents new insight into these explosive phenomena.
Researchers have discovered an unusual pulsar - one of deep space's magnetized spinning neutron-star 'lighthouses' that emits highly focused radio waves from its magnetic poles. It is unusual because the masses of its two neutron stars are quite different -- with one far larger than the other. The breakthrough provides clues about unsolved mysteries in astrophysics -- including the expansion rate of the Universe (the Hubble constant). The discovery was made using the Arecibo radio telescope, Puerto Rico.
Astrophysicists announced the discovery of Nyx, a new collection of 250 stars that they believe are the remnant of a dwarf galaxy that merged with the Milky Way eons ago. The research combined massive cosmological simulations and observational data from the Gaia space observatory. It required large scale supercomputers and deep learning algorithms. The team plans to explore Nyx further using ground-based telescopes.
Two new studies by researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder may help to solve one of the biggest mysteries about the dark, icy bodies of the outer solar system: why so many of them don't circle the sun the way they should.
Astrophysicists of Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU) with colleagues from Russia and oversea have revealed that large and dense particles with irregular shapes possess a 10 nm silicate feature introduced in lots of comets and protoplanetary discs. The results based on the study of 15 olivine samples do not correspond to the particles calculated using the Mie theory (used to model the comet particles) and can help to reconsider the size of the dust particles. A related article appears in Icarus.
Physicists at MIT have designed a quantum "light squeezer" that reduces quantum noise in an incoming laser beam by 15 percent. It is the first system of its kind to work at room temperature, making it amenable to a compact, portable setup that may be added to high-precision experiments to improve laser measurements where quantum noise is a limiting factor.
A new analysis of white dwarf stars supports their role as a key source of carbon in galaxies. Every carbon atom in the universe was created by stars, but astrophysicists still debate which types of stars are the primary source of the carbon in our galaxy. Some studies favor low-mass stars that blew off their envelopes in stellar winds and became white dwarfs, while others favor massive stars that eventually exploded as supernovae.
A new study led by Prof. ZHAO Gang and Dr. Yerra Bharat Kumar from National Astronomical Observatories of Chinese Academy of Sciences (NAOC) provides a fresh understanding of both how lithium is made, and how it is destroyed.
By determining how much energy permeates the center of the Milky Way, researchers have moved closer to understanding the power behind our galaxy.