Oldest known planet-forming disk: Citizen scientists and professional astronomers join forces

A group of citizen scientists and professional astronomers, including Carnegie’s Jonathan Gagné, joined forces to discover an unusual hunting ground for exoplanets. They found a star surrounded by the oldest known circumstellar disk—a primordial ring of gas and dust that orbits around a young star and from which planets can form as the material collides and aggregates. Source: Phys.org Astronomy News

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Oldest known planet-forming disk discovered

A group of citizen scientists and professional astronomers joined forces to discover an unusual hunting ground for exoplanets. They found a star surrounded by the oldest known circumstellar disk — a primordial ring of gas and dust that orbits around a young star and from which planets can form as the material collides and aggregates. Source: Science Daily Astronomy News

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News Solar System 

Big Kuiper Object 2007 OR10 Has a Moon

Hubble images reveal a satellite orbiting one of the Kuiper Belt’s biggest objects. An interesting trend has emerged concerning the largest objects in the distant Kuiper Belt: they have moons. Most notable is Pluto, with five. Haumea has two. Eris, Orcus, Quaoar, and Makemake each have one. In fact, of the eight largest known trans-Neptunian objects, only Sedna and yet-to-be-named 2007 OR10 were considered moonless — and now it’s just Sedna. Little is known about the moon of Kuiper Belt object 2007 OR10, seen here in a Hubble Space Telescope…

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Observing This Week's Sky At a Glance 

This Week’s Sky at a Glance, October 21 – 29

A planet-laden panorama. Friday, October 21 • Saturn and Antares form a compact right triangle with bright Venus, low in the southwest at dusk as shown above. The triangle will narrow every day as Venus moves toward the upper left. • The modest Orionid meteor shower should continue before dawn Saturday, but the light of the last-quarter Moon interferes. Saturday, October 22 • Capella sparkles low in the northeast these evenings. Look for the Pleiades cluster off to its right, by about three fists at arm’s length. These two heralds…

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Black Holes intermediate-mass black holes News x-ray astronomy 

Brilliant X-ray Flashes from Faraway Black Holes?

Two sources tens of millions of light-years away have sent puzzling X-ray flares blazing our way. Now astronomers think they might have the answer: intermediate-mass black holes. In this Chandra X-ray Observatory image of the elliptical galaxy Centaurus A, low, medium, and high-energy X-rays are colored red, green, and blue. Students spotted a brilliant flash of X-rays (arrow) from what is probably a dwarf galaxy neighboring Cen A.NASA / CXC / UA / J.Irwin et al. During every second of daylight, more than a trillion photons flood through the pupil…

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Tracking waves from sunspots gives new solar insight

The sun is constantly changing. Material courses through not only the star itself, but throughout its expansive atmosphere. Understanding the dance of this charged gas is a key part of better understanding our sun. Now, for the first time, researchers have tracked a particular kind of solar wave as it swept upward from the sun’s surface through its atmosphere, adding to our understanding of how solar material travels throughout the sun. Source: Science Daily Astronomy News

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