milky way

Talk about an out-of-this-world map! NASA has unveiled a stunning new clickable panoramic portrait of our home galaxy, the Milky Way. The zoomable, 360-degree view was constructed from more than two million infrared snapshots taken over the past ten years by NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. “If we actually printed this out, we’d need a billboard...

The ultimate age barrier has been broken. The oldest living star in the entire universe may have been discovered—one formed only one or two hundred million years after the Big Bang itself. The ancient star, born some 13.6 billion years ago, bests the previous record handily, by 400 million years, and offers a unique view into what...

When stargazers dream of the ultimate destination for looking up at the heavens, the high-altitude Atacama Desert in northern Chile likely stands at the top of the list. Nature videographer Nicholas Buer recently shot this stunning film, taken over 12 days while he camped out in the San Pedro de Atacama region of northern Chile. Sitting at an altitude...

This artist’s conception shows a supermassive black hole, with millions of times the mass of our sun, buried at the heart of our Milky Way galaxy. Credit: NASA Astronomers around the world are on a cosmic stakeout, closely watching the supermassive black hole—lurking at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy—that is about to gobble...

Astronomers have stumbled on a cosmic mystery surrounding some of the most beautiful objects in our galaxy.  New deep-sky images of the Milky Way’s central core reveal picturesque butterfly-shaped gas clouds left behind by dying stars called bipolar planetary nebulae. And all appear to be mysteriously aligned with one another. Planetary nebulae form during the...

Astronomers have stumbled on a cosmic mystery surrounding some of the most beautiful objects in our galaxy.  New deep-sky images of the Milky Way’s central core reveal picturesque butterfly-shaped gas clouds left behind by dying stars called bipolar planetary nebulae. And all appear to be mysteriously aligned with one another. Planetary nebulae form during the...

As the waning moon moves across late night skies through the faint constellations of Capricornus and Pisces, some of the new season’s brightest stars take center stage. Vega and Arcturus. On Monday, June 24 two of the brightest stars of the northern summer will bracket the skies after nightfall. Toward the high east will be the...

  This week, astronomers announced that they have managed to weigh a minuscule galaxy that breaks the record for the smallest ever detected and may help shed light on mysterious dark matter. With only 1000 stars huddled together, this galactic featherweight dubbed Segue 2 has just enough mass  for dark matter to act as a...