2017

Artistic concept of the galaxy A2744_YD4 (Image ESO/M. Kornmesser)

An article to be published in the journal “The Astrophysical Journal Letters” describes a research about the galaxy A2744_YD4, the most distant observed with the ALMA radio telescope. A team of astronomers led by Nicolas Laporte of University College London also used the X-shooter instrument on ESO’s VLT to confirm that we’re seeing A2744_YD4 as it was about six hundred million years after the Big Bang. The most interesting thing is the dust detection indicating that there were already several supernovae.

Kasei Valles (Photo ESA/DLR/FU Berlin, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO)

ESA has published new photos of the Kasei Valles channel system on Mars captured by the Mars Express space probe’s High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) instrument. The collected data indicate that Kasei Valles were generated by a series of mega-floods and not by a continuous water flow on the surface. Today this system of channels is one of the largest on Mars and extends for 3,000 kilometers (almost 1,900 miles) from Echus Chasma, near Valles Marineris, up to Chryse Planitia.

Artist's concept of a supermassive black hole with ultrafast winds (Image ESA)

An article published in the journal “Nature” describes the most detailed observations of incredibly fast winds that travel at speeds of up to 71,000 km/s, nearly a quarter of the speed of light, near a supermassive black hole. A team of researchers used NASA’s NuSTAR and ESA’s XMM-Newton space telescopes to observe this phenomenon at the center of the galaxy IRAS 13224-3809 recording very quick temperature changes.

Protoplanetary disk with a dust trap seen as a bright ring (Image courtesy Jean-Francois Gonzalez)

An article published in the journal “Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society” describes a research that provides an explanation for one of the last remaining mysteries about planet formation. An international team of researchers conducted a series of simulations that show that in the protoplanetary disk around a young star dust traps form that accelerate the aggregation of pebble-sized fragments from which planets are born.