Category Archives: AstroNews

The Very Hungry Supermassive Black Hole

We all get the munchies, but when you’re a supermassive black hole (SMBH) your hunger might have dire consequences. And just like that an SMBH has outgrown its galaxy and jumped to the top of the heavyweight objects in the universe.

About 12 billion light years from us, there is a galaxy called CID-947. It has a mass similar to our own Milky Way (about 1000 billion times the mass of the Sun) and it was only remarkable because it had an active galactic nucleus (AGN, i.e. an accreting SMBH).

The taming of the screw

I have a mathematician friend who believes that anything that it is mathematically possible exists somewhere in the multiverse. She believes that there are some features that are so beautiful, that it would be a crime if they were simply quirks of the Universal language.

The Big Bang is not going anywhere.

On the 4th of February a paper was published detailing a Universe that didn’t need a Big Bang. While it is very interesting (you can read it here) I find myself once again at odds with how theoretical papers are formulated.

The paper details a mathematical robust way to solve many cosmological conundrums. The flatness problem (discussed in this vlog), the value of dark energy and the nature of dark matter.

4 astronomical dates to look forward to in 2015

6th of March – Dawn arrives at Ceres. The space probe Dawn, which recently took some stunning pictures of the asteroid Vesta, will encounter Ceres in March. Ceres is the largest object in the Asteroid Belt and the only dwarf planet in the inner solar

Are there cows on Mars?

Obviously there are no cows on Mars but NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover detected an increase of methane in the atmosphere and organic molecules from the soil during one of its drilling sessions. The findings were presented at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco.

Cracking the Moon

The Oceanus Procellarum (Ocean of Storms) is the largest of the lunar maria (seas) covering roughly 4 million square kilometers (about the surface area of the EU). Its wide flat basaltic surface was believed to be the result of a major impact on the Moon

New insight into the minor merger process

Galaxy mergers are violent interactions between galaxies and they are consider one of the fundamental steps in how galaxies form and evolve. Mergers occur when two (or more) galaxies collide. This interaction can radically alter the overall structure of the progenitors due to the tidal