Image Credit & Copyright: DOE, Berkeley Lab - Roy Kaltschmidt, photographer
Why is there more matter than antimatter in the Universe? To better understand this facet of basic physics, energy departments in China and the USA led in the creation of the Daya Bay Reactor Neutrino Experiment. Located under thick rock about 50 kilometers northeast of Hong Kong, China, eight Daya Bay detectors monitor antineutrinos emitted by six nearby nuclear reactors. Featured here, a camera looks along one of the Daya Bay detectors, imaging photon sensors that pick up faint light emitted by antineutrinos interacting with fluids in the detector. Early results indicate an unexpectedly high rate of one type of antineutrino changing into another, a rate which, if confirmed, could imply the existence of a previously undetected type of neutrino as well as impact humanity's comprehension of fundamental particle reactions that occurred within the first few seconds of the Big Bang.
Since NASA stopped its Space Shuttle programme in 2011, there has been strong international competition to design alternative reusable spacecraft. Such vehicles significantly cut the cost of space exploration.
India has been putting substantial research and resources into its space programme. Since the US retired its space shuttle programme, private companies like billionaire Elon Musk's SpaceX and Amazon owner Jeff Bezos's Blue Origin are trying to fill the gap.
Japan, Europe and Russia are also in the testing stages for similar technology.
Using 39 of the 66 antennas of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), located 5000 meters up on the Chajnantor plateau in the Chilean Andes, astronomers have been able to detect carbon monoxide (CO) in the disc of debris around an F-type star. Although carbon monoxide is the second most common molecule in the interstellar medium, after molecular hydrogen, this is the first time that CO has been detected around a star of this type. The star, named HD 181327, is a member of the Beta Pictoris moving group, located almost 170 light-years from Earth.
Until now, the presence of CO has been detected only around a few A-type stars, substantially more massive and luminous than HD 181327. Using the superb spatial resolution and sensitivity offered by the ALMA observatory astronomers were now able to capture this stunning ring of smoke and map the density of the CO within the disc.
The study of debris discs is one way to characterize planetary systems and the results of planet formation. The CO gas is found to be co-located with the dust grains in the ring of debris and to have been produced recently. Destructive collisions of icy planetesimals in the disc are possible sources for the continuous replenishment of the CO gas. Collisions in debris discs typically require the icy bodies to be gravitationally perturbed by larger objects in order to reach sufficient collisional velocities. Moreover, the derived CO composition of the icy planetesimals in the disc is consistent with the comets in our Solar System. This possible secondary origin for the CO gas suggests that icy comets could be common around stars similar to our Sun which has strong implications for life suitability in terrestrial exoplanets.
The results were published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society under the title “Exocometary gas in the HD 181327 debris ring” by S. Marino et al.
Paper by Marino et al.
Credit: ESO/Marino et al.
#ESO #Astronomy #Space #Science #Star #HD181327 #Stellar #Debris #Discs #Planetary #Exoplanets #CO #CarbonMonoxide #BetaPictoris #Cosmos #Universe #ALMA #Atacama #Desert #Chajnantor #Plateau #Andes #Chile #Europe
In this amazing animation created by using a Coronado Solarmax II 60 telescope, 2x barlow and an ASI120mm camera you can see AR2546, which is the only visible sunspot at the moment, and it is a massive one, having a diameter of over 25,000 kilometers.
What is a sunspot?
Sunspots are regions of the Sun's photosphere (https://goo.gl/b3Jncm) that have a lower temperature than their surroundings and therefore appear darker. The lower temperature is caused by concentrations of magnetic field flux (https://goo.gl/GcwdBv) that inhibits convection (https://goo.gl/d9z6np) in this area, preventing the photosphere from heating up as much. Read more on sunspots here:
See a few still images of sunspots, taken by another talented amateur astronomer, , here:
Interested in the Sun? Take a look here:
Interested in space weather? The NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center can be found here:
Global Star Party
is one of the many talented astronomers participating in the Global Star Party ( ) . The Global Star Party is a weekly hangout with talk about astronomy and live views of objects in space. Should you be interested in astronomy take a look here:
Image credit: AR2546 https://goo.gl/WtdCza
If you like this photograph then you can find more of Chris's work here at his FlIckr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ckemu/
#science #astronomy #sun #astrophotography #solarastronomy #space #solarsystem #sunspot #activeregion #ar2546
- FA ČVUTarchitektura - Ing.arch., 1992 - 2000
- FA ČVUTTeorie Architektury - PhD., 2001 - 2007
- architektself employed freelance
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