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Astrophysics! You will know everything about the cosmos right here!! Read introduction for more info.
Astrophysics! You will know everything about the cosmos right here!! Read introduction for more info.

Astrophysics's posts

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Magnetic wormhole created for the first time

Those who watch sci-fi movies might have some idea about what a wormhole is.
Nevertheless, a wormhole or Einstein-Rosen Bridge, is a hypothetical topological feature that would fundamentally be a shortcut connecting two separate points in spacetime

A gravitational wormhole is still a hypothetical idea, but scientists in the Department of Physics at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona have created what we can call a magnetic wormhole.

What is a magnetic wormhole?

A magnetic wormhole is a wormhole which transfers magnetic field from one point to another through a tunnel while remaining invisible, that is, it appears as a magnetic monopole at the other side.

You can read more about it here:

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If this doesn't fascinate you,  I don't know what will.

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What do you want more?
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Astronomy and astrophysics related news
Stuff found in space(Stars,galaxies,etc)
Various theories regarding the cosmos
Images of planets,galaxies,etc from NASA

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The Great Attractor

What is the Great Attractor?

A busy patch of space has been captured in the image below from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Scattered with many nearby stars, the field also has numerous galaxies in the background. Located on the border of Triangulum Australe (The Southern Triangle) and Norma (The Carpenter’s Square), this field covers part of the Norma Cluster (Abell 3627) as well as a dense area of our own galaxy, the Milky Way.

The Norma Cluster is the closest massive galaxy cluster to the Milky Way, and lies about 220 million light-years away. The enormous mass concentrated here, and the consequent gravitational attraction, mean that this region of space is known to astronomers as the Great Attractor, and it dominates our region of the Universe.

Observing the Great Attractor is difficult at optical wavelengths. The plane of the Milky Way — responsible for the numerous bright stars in this image — both outshines (with stars) and obscures (with dust) many of the objects behind it. There are some tricks for seeing through this — infrared or radio observations, for instance — but the region behind the center of the Milky Way, where the dust is thickest, remains an almost complete mystery to astronomers.

More about the Great Attractor here: and here:

What NASA says:

Great post by Brian Koberlain on Great Attractor:

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Strange Signal From Galactic Center Is Looking More and More Like Dark Matter

The more that scientists stare at it, the more a strange signal from the center of the Milky Way galaxy appears to be the result of dark matter annihilation. If confirmed, it would be the first direct evidence for dark matter ever seen.

Dark matter is a mysterious, invisible substance making up roughly 85 percent of all matter in the universe. It floats throughout our galaxy, but is more concentrated at its center. There, a dark matter particle can meet another dark matter particle flying through space. If they crash into one another, they will annihilate each other (dark matter is its own antiparticle) and give off gamma rays.

To search for a dark matter signal, astronomers use NASA’s Fermi Gamma-Ray Telescope to map the gamma radiation throughout the galaxy. Then, they try to account for all known sources of light within this map. They plot the location of gas and dust that could be emitting radiation and subtract that signal from their gamma-ray map. Then they determine where all the stars are and subtract out that light, and so on for every object that might be emitting radiation. Once all those sources are gone, there remains a tiny excess of gamma radiation in the data that no known process can account for.

“The more we scrutinize it, the more it looks like dark matter,” said astrophysicist Dan Hooper of Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, co-author of a paper that appeared Feb. 26 on arXiv, a website that hosts scientific papers that have yet to go through peer-review.

Since 2009, Hooper has been claiming that this bright signal is evidence of dark matter. According to his team’s latest data, the gamma radiation could be produced by dark matter particles with a mass of 30 to 40 gigaelectronvolts (GeV) crashing into one another. A proton is roughly 1 GeV for comparison.

But the galactic center is a tricky place. There are many other gamma ray sources that could be mimicking a dark matter signal as well as yet undiscovered phenomena that might account for the radiation. For the most part, few other researchers have been convinced of Hooper’s data. One oft-used counterargument is that the excess gamma ray signal could come from millisecond pulsars — dead star cores that spin extremely fast and beam out a huge amount of energy. Astronomers don’t yet have a good understanding of how these objects work.

“If you need to explain something weird in the galactic center, you wave your hands and say, ‘Millisecond pulsars,’” said astronomer Doug Finkbeiner of Harvard, another co-author of the new work.

Finkbeiner has long been a skeptic that the excess Fermi telescope signal represents dark matter annihilation. He knows that the galactic center is a strange place full of unexpected phenomena, having discovered in 2010 two gigantic structures spanning 50,000 light-years emanating from the Milky Way, which had gone unnoticed until then. But a more careful look at Hooper’s data has started to convince Finkbeiner that there might be something there.

When a galaxy forms, gravitational attraction brings together a huge mass that begins spinning. As they spin, large galaxies cool down and flatten out like a pizza, forming the familiar spiral shape seen in many telescope images. Dark matter, which actually makes up the bulk of a galaxy’s mass, can’t flatten out because it doesn’t interact with the electromagnetic force, which would allow it to radiate away thermal energy. It stays in a spherical halo circling the galaxy. So any dark matter signal should come not just from within the galactic plane, but also from above and below it, where stars are few and far between but dark matter is abundant.

More here:

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Dark matter found with X-ray?

Two teams working on the search for dark matter have independently suggested the search could concentrate at a specific X-ray wavelength, following study of data collected by the XMM-Newton space observatory.

While it's not a proof of anything just yet, the two groups – one from the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics, the other from the Netherlands' Leiden Observatory – have spotted a spectrographic line in X-rays at 3.5 kiloelectron volts, and this line is observed across 73 galaxy clusters.

Readers familiar with particle physics discoveries such as the search for the Higgs boson will be aware that identifying possible energies is a big thing to particle hunters. It's an interface between the theoretician and the experimentalist: “If particle W exists, its decay should emit Particles X and Y, carrying energy Z”.

What's intriguing the scientists is this: that particular energy doesn't match anything we already know about what generates galactic X-rays. Science quotes one of the scientists, Maxim Markevitch of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, as putting it this way: “We could not match it with anything that would come from a thermal plasma”.

You can read more here:

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Spaceship: Earth

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Really amazing Supernovae
We present you 29 gorgeous images of supernovae. Which is your favorite?

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The alien worlds known as "super-Earths" may be more like our own planet than previously thought, a new study suggests.
It suggests that these planets can have oceans and continents just like we have on Earth!

#superearth   #space  

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It's nice that Sun does not have a binary companion!
Double Star with a planet equals chaos

A planet in a double star system can switch suns.

It can also crash into a sun, or be ejected completely from the system.

#Gravity gets complicated when three bodies are involved, and millions of calculations are required to compute paths like these. I created the animation using a gravity simulation package written by Eugene Butikov of St. Petersburg State University.
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