Astronomy News

On this page we bring you a round up of the latest news and information using data feeds direct from the some of the major websites in the world of Astronomy and Astrophotography.

Clicking on the news item (highlighted in blue) will open the linked article from the website in a new browser tab or window.

NASA Universe

Paramount Equipment

 

ESA Space

  • Surfing complete

    Slowed by skimming through the very top of the upper atmosphere, ESA’s ExoMars has lowered itself into a planet-hugging orbit and is about ready to begin sniffing the Red Planet for methane.

  • Leaky atmosphere linked to lightweight planet

    The Red Planet’s low gravity and lack of magnetic field makes its outermost atmosphere an easy target to be swept away by the solar wind, but new evidence from ESA’s Mars Express spacecraft shows that the Sun’s radiation may play a surprising role in its escape.

Sky and Telescope

 

Stereo

  • Magnetic coil springs accelerate particles on the Sun

    In April and July 2014, the Sun emitted three jets of energetic particles into space, that were quite exceptional: the particle flows contained such high amounts of iron and helium-3, a rare variety of helium, as have been observed only few times before. STEREO observations enabled researchers to determine the sources of these energetic particles.

  • STEREO images show the Sun's Outer Atmosphere is More Complex than Previously Thought

    The outer part of the Sun's atmosphere, the corona, looks pretty smooth, but new deep exposures of the outer corona reveal complex structures. This should make for some interesting observations from the upcoming Parker Solar Probe Mission (to be launched in 2018), which will be flying right through these regions.

European Southern Observatory

  • ESO Astronomer Selected for Astronaut Training Programme
    ESO astronomer Suzanna Randall is one step closer to her dream of becoming the first German woman to travel into space. She has been selected as a new trainee of the initiative Astronautin, which aims to train the first female German astronaut and send her on a research mission to the International Space Station. The announcement was made today at a press conference at ESO Headquarters in Garching, Germany.
  • ESO’s VLT Working as 16-metre Telescope for First Time
    The ESPRESSO instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile has for the first time been used to combine light from all four of the 8.2-metre Unit Telescopes. Combining light from the Unit Telescopes in this way makes the VLT the largest optical telescope in existence in terms of collecting area.