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Archive for May 15, 2012

German Astronomers Finish Europe’s Largest Solar Telescope on Tenerife

May 15, 2012 1 comment

After ten years of development, the new German solar telescope GREGOR will start operating at the Spanish Observatorio del Teide of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias on Tenerife. It is the largest solar telescope in Europe and number three worldwide. It will provide the German and the international community of solar physicists with new and better instrumentation which will enable them to investigate our home star in unprecedented detail.

 

Full Story: http://www.idw-online.de/de/news477757

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Expedition 31 Trio Blasts Off for International Space Station

May 15, 2012 Leave a comment

The Soyuz spacecraft launched at 10:01 p.m. CDT.

NASA Television will provide live docking coverage beginning at 11 p.m. on May 16. Hatch opening and welcoming ceremonies will occur about three hours later on May 17.

Full Story: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2012/may/12-156_Exp31-32_Launch.html

NASA Modifies Launch Service Contract To Add Falcon 9 Rocket

May 15, 2012 Leave a comment

NASA has announced a modification of its NASA Launch Services (NLS) II contract with Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, Calif., to add an additional configuration of the Falcon 9 rocket to its fleet.

 

Full Story: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2012/may/HQ_C12-019_NLS_Falcon_9.html

NASA’S Chandra Sees Remarkable Outburst from Old Black Hole

May 15, 2012 Leave a comment

An extraordinary outburst produced by a black hole in a nearby galaxy has provided direct evidence for a population of old, volatile stellar black holes.

 

Full Story: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2012/apr/HQ_12-139_Chandra_Old_Black_Hole.html

Overfed Black Holes Shut Down Galactic Star-Making

May 15, 2012 Leave a comment

The Herschel Space Observatory has shown galaxies with the most powerful, active black holes at their cores produce fewer stars than galaxies with less active black holes.

“We want to know how star formation and black hole activity are linked,” said Mathew Page of University College London’s Mullard Space Science Laboratory in the United Kingdom and lead author of the Nature paper describing these findings. “The two processes increase together up to a point, but the most energetic black holes appear to turn off star formation.” Supermassive black holes, weighing as much as millions of suns, are believed to reside in the hearts of all large galaxies.

When gas falls upon these monsters, the material is accelerated and heated around the black hole, releasing great torrents of energy. Earlier in the history of the universe, these giant, luminous black holes, called active galactic nuclei, were often much brighter and more energetic. Star formation was also livelier back then.

Full Story: http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2012/may/HQ_12-151_Herschel_Big_Black_Holes.html