The nearest exoplanets to us provide the best opportunities for study, including searching for evidence of life outside the Solar System. Astronomers have now detected a system of super-Earth planets orbiting the nearby star Gliese 887, the brightest red dwarf star in the sky. The newly discovered super-Earths lie close to the red dwarf’s habitable zone, where water can exist in liquid form.
A new study has shown that not all saber-tooths were fearsome predators.
Astronomers have discovered the second-most distant quasar ever found. It is the first quasar to receive an indigenous Hawaiian name, Poniua’ena. Data show the supermassive black hole powering Poniua’ena is surprisingly massive, challenging current theories of how supermassive black holes formed and grew in the young universe.
An extraordinary asteroid with comet-like features has researchers puzzled.
Despite the near-universal assumption of individuality in biology, there is little agreement about what individuals are and few rigorous quantitative methods for their identification. A new approach may solve the problem by defining individuals in terms of informational processes.
Dineobellator notohesperus lived 67 million years ago.
Micro-CT scanning of “Little Foot” skull reveals new aspects of the life of this more than 3-million year-old-human ancestor.
Turtle ant soldiers and their oddly-shaped heads suggest that evolution is not always a one-way street toward increasing specialization.
Researchers using ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) have observed an extreme planet where they suspect it rains iron. The ultra-hot giant exoplanet has a day side where temperatures climb above 2400 degrees Celsius, high enough to vaporise metals. Strong winds carry iron vapour to the cooler night side where it condenses into iron droplets.
Earth turned faster at the end of the time of the dinosaurs than it does today, rotating 372 times a year, compared to the current 365, according to a new study of fossil mollusk shells from the late Cretaceous. The new measurement informs models of how the Moon formed and how close to Earth it has been over the 4.5-billion-year history of the Earth-Moon gravitational dance.
Astronomers have captured a truly incredible image of two stars locked in a fight to the death, producing a stunning, if violent, cosmic masterpiece in the process.
The record-setting stellar explosion SN 2006gy was 50 billion times brighter than our sun, with a blast so energetic it baffled the scientific community. Now scientists think they have uncovered what made it so incredibly bright.
The most distant dying galaxy discovered so far, more massive than our Milky Way — with more than a trillion stars — has revealed that the ‘cores’ of these systems had formed already 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, about 1 billion years earlier than previous measurements revealed.
Physicists are using gravitational lensing to take the temperature of dark matter, the mysterious substance that makes up about a quarter of our universe.
Researchers are investigating whether an anti-itch medication that targets a specific part of our nerve cells can make morphine — which targets a different part–more effective. The findings suggest it can.