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SPACE & SCIENCE NEWS: May 2007
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Lab study indicates Mars has a molten core May 31, 2007
Core of the galaxy catapults stars our way May 31, 2007
'Seat belts' restrain galaxies' black holes May 31, 2007
Spacecraft aids in forecast of solar radiation storms May 31, 2007
Hubble singles out young stars in spiral galaxy May 30, 2007
Planet hunters spy distant haul May 29, 2007
Heftier stars are more likely to host planets May 29, 2007
Astronomers eagerly await potential birth of 'super' sun May 29, 2007
Gamma-ray bursts active longer than thought May 27, 2007
Astronomers discover multi-planet system around unexpected star May 26, 2007
Booming sound waves heat up galaxy cluster May 26, 2007
Hubble's successor could be fixed in space after all May 25, 2007
Our solar system started with a nudge, not a bang May 25, 2007
Mars rover's disability leads to major water discovery May 24, 2007
How to spot the speediest black holes May 24, 2007
Merging stars may explain mysterious observations May 23, 2007
Saturn's rings may be twice as massive as thought May 23, 2007
Ice Age blast 'ravaged America' May 22, 2007
NASA analysis of asteroid risk deeply flawed, critics say May 21, 2007
How to survive in a black hole May 20, 2007
Merging galaxies observed in unprecedented detail May 18, 2007
Grinding ice generates Saturn moon's icy plumes May 17, 2007
Strange alien world made of 'hot ice' May 16, 2007
Paired satellites drift dangerously apart May 16, 2007
Hubble spots ring of dark matter May 15, 2007
Galactic merger to 'evict' Sun and Earth May 15, 2007
NASA unveils Hubble's successor May 14, 2007
Astronomers study a star born soon after the Big Bang May 12, 2007
Saturn moon could yield new insight into origins of life May 12, 2007
Exotic extrasolar planet is the hottest yet discovered May 12, 2007
Galaxy collision reveals missing matter May 11, 2007
First map of an extrasolar planet May 10, 2007
Phoenix Mars probe prepares for launch May 9, 2007
Star dies in monstrous explosion May 8, 2007
NASA's Mars rover finds evidence of ancient volcanic explosion May 6, 2007
European rocket powers to record May 5, 2007
Astronomers find super-massive planet May 4, 2007
Veteran astronaut Walter Schirra dies May 3, 2007
Molten core may explain Mercury's magnetic field May 3, 2007
European planet hunters on brink of Earth-sized prize May 3, 2007
Star cluster's triple baby boom puzzles astronomers May 2, 2007
Spacecraft returns Jupiter images May 2, 2007
Black holes may fill the universe with seeds of life May 1, 2007


Mars interior
Lab study indicates Mars has a molten core
(May 31, 2007)


The long-dead magnetic field of Mars could eventually come back to life if the results of a new experiment are correct. The study, which suggests that Mars' core is mostly or completely liquid, may also help scientists unravel the mystery of why the planetís magnetic field shut off billions of years ago.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

Milky Way Galaxy
Core of the galaxy catapults stars our way
(May 31, 2007)


The spinning bar of material at the centre of our galaxy appears to be flinging surrounding stars outwards, in the general direction of the Sun. Further analysis of this phenomenon could shed light on the distribution of dark matter in the Milky Way. In recent years, astronomers have discovered a number of faint streams of stars. In each stream, all the stars move at the same velocity across the sky.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

supermassive black hole ejected from galaxy
'Seat belts' restrain galaxies' black holes
(May 31, 2007)


Many galaxies are fitted with "seat belts" that keep their colossal black holes from flying out into space after violent collisions, a new analysis suggests. The work may explain why astronomers have so far failed to observe any black holes being hurled out of their host galaxies – a phenomenon predicted by gravitational theory.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

solar storm
Spacecraft aids in forecast of solar radiation storms
(May 31, 2007)


The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) now enables scientists to forecast solar radiation storms, giving future astronauts, traveling to the moon and Mars, time to seek shelter and ground controllers time to safeguard satellites. The new method for the first time offers as much as one hour advance notice when a storm is approaching.

Read more. Source: NASA

M81
Hubble singles out young stars in spiral galaxy
(May 30, 2007)


Individual stars appear as tiny flecks of light in a newly released image from the Hubble Space Telescope, the most detailed portrait ever made of the spiral galaxy M81. M81 is one of the brightest galaxies visible from Earth and lies 11.6 million light years away – about five times as far away as our nearest large galactic neighbour, Andromeda.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

Gliese 436
Planet hunters spy distant haul
(May 29, 2007)


A haul of 28 new planets beyond our solar system has been detected by the world's most prolific planet hunters. The finds were among 37 objects seen orbiting distant stars by a US and Anglo-Australian team in the last year. Other objects reported by the group, at an American Astronomical Society meeting in Honolulu, included five failed stars, known as brown dwarfs.

Read more. Source: BBC

giant exoplanet
Heftier stars are more likely to host planets
(May 29, 2007)


The heftier a star is, the more likely it is to host a Jupiter-like planet, suggest the first 10 observations of stars more massive than the Sun. The new work bolsters the leading theory of how planets form, but raises new mysteries, since massive stars do not appear to host the "hot Jupiters" found in tight orbits around many lower-mass stars.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

LH54-425, artist's concept
Astronomers eagerly await potential birth of 'super' sun
(May 29, 2007)


Astronomers have pinpointed two massive stars, orbiting close to each other in space, that could merge to create a super sun, 100 times bigger than our own. The massive binary star system, located in a galaxy orbiting the Milky Way, has been captured by NASA scientists using satellite and ground-based telescopes. It is one of the most extreme systems of its type known and at less than three million years old, is relatively young.

Read more. Source: The Independent

gamma-ray_burster
Gamma-ray bursts active longer than thought
(May 27, 2007)


Using NASA's Swift satellite, astronomers have discovered that energetic flares seen after gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are not just hiccups, they appear to be a continuation of the burst itself. GRBs release in seconds the same amount of energy our Sun will emit over its expected 10 billion-year lifetime. The staggering energy of a long-duration GRB (lasting more than a few seconds) comes from the core of a massive star collapsing to form a black hole or neutron star.

Read more. Source: NASA-Goddard

HD 155358 planetary system
Astronomers discover multi-planet system around unexpected star
(May 26, 2007)


University of Texas at Austin astronomers William Cochran and Michael Endl have used the 9.2-meter Hobby-Eberly Telescope (HET) at McDonald Observatory to discover a system of two Jupiter-like planets orbiting a star whose composition might seem to rule out planet formation. This NASA-funded study has implications for theories of planet formation. Cochran and Endl have been monitoring the star, HD 155358, since 2001 using the High Resolution Spectrograph on HET.

Read more. Source: Univ. of Texas, Austin

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