Posts Tagged: astronomy

The cosmic ray gun duel of Eta Carinae

The cosmic ray gun duel of Eta Carinae

High-precision X-ray observations confirm binary star system shoots cosmic rays     An international collaboration operating NASA’s NuSTAR satellite has revealed that two of the biggest stars in the galaxy are capable of creating cosmic rays. Their results were published in Nature Astronomy this month. In the time it takes you to read this sentence, hundreds of cosmic rays have pummeled through our bodies. Cosmic rays are mostly made of protons and electrons, with the smallest fraction made of X-rays and gamma rays. These jets of high-energy particles not only make up a sizable portion of radiation astronauts and airplane pilots receive, but they also can reach the ends of… Read more

X-ray technology reveals never-before-seen matter around black hole

X-ray technology reveals never-before-seen matter around black hole

X-ray polarimetry resolves shape of matter around Cygnus X-1 black hole     In an international collaboration between Japan and Sweden, scientists clarified how gravity affects the shape of matter near the black hole in binary system Cygnus X-1. Their findings, which were published in Nature Astronomy this month, may help scientists further understand the physics of strong gravity and the evolution of black holes and galaxies. Near the center of the constellation of Cygnus is a star orbiting the first black hole discovered in the universe. Together, they form a binary system known as Cygnus X-1. This black hole is also one of the brightest sources of X-rays in… Read more

Yasushi Fukazawa, astronomy

Yasushi Fukazawa, astronomy

A Conversation with Distinguished Professor Yasushi Fukazawa Telescopes in Space Professor Yasushi Fukazawa is an astronomer at Hiroshima University, but his telescopes are located in outer space. Fukazawa is interested in X-rays and Gamma rays, types of light that the human eye cannot see and Earth-based telescopes are unable to detect.  Earth’s atmosphere absorbs the X-rays and Gamma rays emitted by objects in space.  To gather information about these types of energy, astronomers build telescopes and then rocket-launch them into orbit where they circle Earth as satellites.  The Hubble Space Telescope may be the most famous of this type of satellite telescope.  Traditionally, satellite telescopes primarily built in Japan are… Read more

Michitoshi Yoshida, astronomy

Michitoshi Yoshida, astronomy

“People might think the sky is constant and astronomers are always looking at the same things, but the universe is active and so dynamic.  All the time there is some explosion happening somewhere.  Every time we look at the sky there is something new to see.” The First Telescope “We were up on the roof for class experiments during my third year of university and we needed to observe the stars through tiny telescopes.  That’s what lit the fire in my heart.”   Professor Michitoshi Yoshida remembers his first introduction to astronomy with a genuine fondness.  That evening on the university roof has led to his current position at the… Read more

Lasers melt rocks to reveal development of super-Earths and how giant impacts make magma

Lasers melt rocks to reveal development of super-Earths and how giant impacts make magma

Advanced laser shock technique puts magmas under highest-ever pressures New experiments provide insight into how Earth-type planets form when giant asteroids or planetesimals collide and how the interiors of such planets develop. Researchers at Hiroshima University, Osaka University, Ehime University, University of Tokyo, and the Chiba Institute of Technology collaborated to publish their research in the August 3, 2016 issue of Science Advances. “Our results provide a better understanding how impact-generated magmas evolve and allow us to model Earth-type planets’ inner structures. Collisions at these extreme temperatures and pressures created our own Earth and may have also formed the mantles of other Super Earth planets, for example CoRoT-7b and Kepler-10b,”… Read more