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astrophysics, cosmology, the universe...

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MASCOT en route to Asteroid 1999 JU3

Philae landed on a comet just three weeks ago; now, another German Aerospace Center lander mission has been launched - the Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout (MASCOT) is already on its way to Asteroid 1999 JU3.

Posted: Dec 4th, 2014

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Green Light for E-ELT Construction

At a recent meeting ESO's main governing body, the Council gave the green light for the construction of the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) in two phases.

Posted: Dec 4th, 2014

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Pulsars with black holes could hold the 'ho ly grail' of gravity

The intermittent light emitted by pulsars, the most precise timekeepers in the universe, allows scientists to verify Einstein's theory of relativity, especially when these objects are paired up with another neutron star or white dwarf that interferes with their gravity. However, this theory could be analysed much more effectively if a pulsar with a black hole were found, except in two particular cases, according to researchers.

Posted: Dec 4th, 2014

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Space travel is a bit safer than expected

Analysis of data from the MATROSHKA experiment, the first comprehensive measurements of long-term exposure of astronauts to cosmic radiation, has now been completed. This experiment, carried out on board and outside of the International Space Station, showed that the cosmos may be less hostile to space travelers than expected.

Posted: Dec 3rd, 2014

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Breakthrough in astroparticle physics

Physicists have developed a novel camera technology which for the first time allows sources of cosmic gamma radiation to be observed without interruption even when the moon is shining brightly.

Posted: Dec 3rd, 2014

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Strange galaxy perplexes astronomers

With the help of citizen scientists, astronomers have found an important new example of a very rare type of galaxy that may provide valuable insight on galaxy evolution in the early Universe.

Posted: Dec 2nd, 2014

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Ground-based detection of super-Earth transit paves way to remote sensing of exoplanets

Astronomers have measured the passing of a super-Earth in front of a bright, nearby Sun-like star using a ground-based telescope for the first time. The transit of the exoplanet 55 Cancri e is the shallowest detected from the ground yet. Since detecting a transit is the first step in analyzing a planet's atmosphere, this success bodes well for characterizing the many small planets that upcoming space missions are expected to discover in the next few years.

Posted: Dec 1st, 2014

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