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  • Old red dwarfs teach us new tricks Study of the so-called "magnetic activity" of stars like the Sun dates back to early Chinese astronomers who made naked eye observations of sunspots at least as early as ...
    Posted Jul 28, 2016, 1:19 AM by Jeremy Drake
  • X-ray pulsar takes the plunge Smithsonian astrophysicist Vallia Antoniou and University of Crete astronomer Andreas Zezas are leading an international team studying the Small Magellanic Cloud using an extensive series of observations made by the ...
    Posted Jul 27, 2016, 6:41 AM by Jeremy Drake
  • Blast in Scorpius: an overture to a supernova? The fastest nova in town featured in an earlier posting detailed the fascinatingly rapid evolution of the V745 Scorpii event followed in the UV and X-rays by NASA's ...
    Posted Jul 27, 2016, 3:03 AM by Jeremy Drake
  • Coronal structure of planet-hosting stars The classical definition of a star's "habitable zone" is the orbital distance at which a planet can be warmed sufficiently to sustain liquid water on its surface.  In earlier ...
    Posted Jul 27, 2016, 1:59 AM by Jeremy Drake
  • King of Spin In 1947, legendary Mount Wilson Observatory stellar spectroscopist Paul Merrill noticed some peculiar features in photographic spectrograms of an otherwise fairly normal looking yellow giant, HD 117555.  Spectral lines appeared ...
    Posted Jul 26, 2016, 4:11 AM by Jeremy Drake
  • Star shredded by supermassive black hole Strong gravity close to massive black holes can tear stars apart if they get too close.  The disruption occurs because of tidal forces - the side of the star closest to ...
    Posted Nov 9, 2015, 7:24 AM by Jeremy Drake
  • The fastest nova in town A nova outbursts results from a thermonuclear explosion on the surface of a white dwarf star in a close binary with a non-degenerate (more "normal") star. The gravitational pull ...
    Posted Oct 27, 2015, 9:15 AM by Jeremy Drake
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