The Lick Observatory's Newest Telescope Is an Exoplanet Hunting Robot

Exoplanets—planets orbiting stars that aren't our Sun—seem to be popping out of the cosmic woodwork now that we know where and how to look for them. The Kepler mission alone has discovered 961 of them, and it's only looking at a tiny sliver of distant space. Just think of how many we'll find when the new James Lick… » 3/28/14 5:40pm 3/28/14 5:40pm

New Big Bang Evidence Suggests Presence of Alternate Universes

According to very real and totally verifiable scientific research, we might live in a multiverse. No, really. The same research that revealed the first-ever direct evidence of Big Bang inflation earlier this week also suggests the presence of alternate universes. » 3/19/14 6:29pm 3/19/14 6:29pm

Astronomers Discover First Direct Proof of the Big Bang Expansion

Somebody's going to win a Nobel Prize. At least that's what the physics community is saying after the announcement on Monday that a Harvard team has found the first direct evidence of cosmic inflation right after the Big Bang. It's more proof that the Big Bang really was the beginning of it all. » 3/17/14 12:20pm 3/17/14 12:20pm

22 Amazing Observatories Where Our Radio Eyes Watch the Universe

Humans can only see visible light—the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that is visible to the human eye. That's why so hard to study celestial objects hidden behind cosmic dust. But radio astronomy reveals those parts of the Universe that can't be seen in visible light—and the secrets of dust-shrouded galaxies… » 2/25/14 9:00am 2/25/14 9:00am

The Worst Blunders People Make in Inventing Fictional Alien Worlds

We love stories that take us to alien planets and let us explore whole new environments. But not every alien planet is totally realistic, especially given how much we've learned about exoplanets lately. So we asked six experts to tell us the biggest mistakes they see in fictional habitable worlds — and here's what they … » 2/20/14 5:40pm 2/20/14 5:40pm

NASA sees mysterious heart in the darkness of space

The Chandra X-Ray Observatory has captured this Heart in the Darkness, for all of you astronomers in love out there, "a heart-shaped cloud of 8 million-degree Celsius gas in the central region of the star cluster NGC 346. NASA says that the "the nature of the heart in the darkness will remain mysterious" until they make… » 2/14/14 11:40am 2/14/14 11:40am

New Solar Satellite Uses Pigment Found In Prehistoric Cave Paintings

The European Space Agency's new solar satellite will be partially shielded using a bone-based pigment found in prehistoric cave paintings. The result will be a surreal cross between the earliest era of human cognition and creativity—that underground cinematic world of flickering animal images found in European… » 2/12/14 12:20pm 2/12/14 12:20pm

Lasers Create Ultra-Lightweight Mirrors From Styrofoam Beads

It's much easier for a telescope to see deep into the universe when it doesn't have to peer through the Earth's atmosphere, but getting them into space is expensive. There is a much cheaper solution, though, as researchers have actually found a way to make incredibly light mirrors using lasers and polystyrene—aka… » 1/22/14 2:20pm 1/22/14 2:20pm

The Naked Metal Core of a Dead Planet Is Circling the Sun

You know about those plans to visit an asteroid in the next few years? Well, a select group of astronauts would like to sweeten the deal. Why visit a regular asteroid, when there's a planet's solid metal floating up there and it's likely magnetic? » 12/26/13 6:30pm 12/26/13 6:30pm

Archaeologist Uses 2,000-Year-Old Sky to Study Roman Ruins

» 12/19/13 6:20pm 12/19/13 6:20pm

If archaeology was once about digging through dirt, it is increasingly—like almost every other profession—about programming computers. Bernie Frischer, an Indiana University "archaeo-informaticist," has came up with a new theory about two Roman monuments. His finding are based on 3D reconstructions of the monuments… » 12/19/13 6:20pm 12/19/13 6:20pm

Astronomers Figured Out How to Weigh Entire Planets Using Starlight

Weighing a planet is a tough task. I mean, it's not like you can just put them on a bathroom scale. And, while astronomers figured out how to measure the mass of planets in our solar system a long time ago, it's practically impossible to weigh exoplanets. Well, it was until recently. » 12/19/13 5:20pm 12/19/13 5:20pm

What Name Would You Give to a New Constellation?

Looking up at the sky is a bit like a real-world Rorschach Test. During the day, it's possible to see pretty much anything in the clouds passing by: eight-legged pigs, creepy faces, middle fingers, and a hell of a lot of peens. On clear nights, connecting the dots between the heavens can be fun; heck, stars have been… » 12/10/13 6:00pm 12/10/13 6:00pm

First Satellite Built by High School Kids Is Heading to Space Tonight

Your coolest high school science project probably involved some baking soda and a paper mâché volcano, right? A little chemical reaction and a big mess? Well, kids these days are smarter than you. They're building satellites and sending them to space. » 11/19/13 3:00pm 11/19/13 3:00pm