Massimo Luciani

The galaxy MCG+01-02-015, also known as LEDA 1852 (Photo ESA/Hubble & NASA and N. Grogin (STScI), Acknowledgement: Judy Schmidt)

The galaxy MCG+01-02-015, also known as LEDA 1852, got photographed using the Hubble Space Telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) instrument. The special characteristic of this galaxy is that it’s extremely isolated. Generally, galaxies are part of clusters which are in turn part of larger formations, bonded together in structures called galactic filaments, formations at a really huge scale. Among these filaments, however, there are cosmic voids in which sometimes there may be a lonely galaxy.

Garden City seen by the Mars Rover Curiosity (Image NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

At the 47th annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland, scientists of NASA’s Mars Rover Curiosity mission presented the results of new analyzes of the Martian site called Garden City. It’s an area visited in March 2015 that turned out to be very interesting from the geological point of view because of its chemical diversity and for its mineral veins, which protrude from the rocks they formed on.

The biggest update made so far to the software that runs Curiosity’s Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument considerably enhanceed it. In fact, it allowed an improvement in the interpretation of the collected data making it more sensitive to a wider range of possible compositions of the Martian rocks.

The Tarantula Nebula with the PSR J0540-6919 and PSR J0537-6910 pulsars circled (Image NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center; background: ESO/R. Fosbury (ST-ECF))

An article published in the journal “Science” describes the study of the first gamma-ray emitting pulsar discovered outside the Milky Way. Cataloged as PSR J0540-6919, it’s part of an area full of stars known as the Tarantula Nebula or 30 Doradus within the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small satellite galaxy of the Milky Way. The gamma rays emission from this pulsar was identified by the LAT (Large Area Telescope), one of the instruments of the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope.

V774104 (Foto cortesia Subaru Telescope by Scott Sheppard, Chad Trujillo, and David Tholen. Tutti i diritti riservati)

At the 47th Annual Meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland, the discovery of a celestial body called for now only V774104 was announced. Using the Subaru Telescope in Hawaii, a team led by Scott Sheppard of the Carnegie Institution for Science and Chad Trujillo of the Gemini Observatory in Hawaii discovered what seems the most distant object yet detected in the solar system being about 15.5 billion kilometers (about 9.5 billion miles) from the Sun, about three times Pluto and about 103 times that of Earth.

Pictures of Phobos showing the grooves on its surface (Photo NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona)

At the 47th Annual Meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland, A research was presented about Phobos, a moon of Mars. Terry Hurford of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center led a team of scientists who analyzed the grooves on Phobos surface. The conclusion is that these are the first signs of structural failure that will lead to the destruction of this moon.