- Astronomy - Jan 12 Week In Images
- Astronomy - Jan 1 A hopeful 2018: Imperial academics on positive things coming our way this year
- Physics - Dec 28 £500k bequest makes splash with Glasgow gravitational wave scientists
- Astronomy - Dec 22 Year in images / Highlights / ESA
- Astronomy - Dec 21 ’Winking’ star 550 light- years away may be devouring wrecked planets
- Astronomy - Dec 21 While earthlings take a break, the Mars rover keeps working
- Astronomy - Dec 20 Update on Neutron Star Smash- Up: Jet Hits a Roadblock
- Astronomy - Dec 19 Habitable planets could exist around pulsars
- Astronomy - Dec 14 Return to Earth
- Astronomy - Dec 14 Creating a World of Make- Believe to Better Understand the Real Universe
- Astronomy - Dec 13 Astronomers create best map of the southern sky
- Physics - Dec 13 Outstanding research - from nanowires to supernovae
- Literature - Dec 10 The Billingford Hutch and the moonwort fern - a medieval mystery solved
- Physics - Dec 4 MACHOs are dead. WIMPs are a no-show. Say hello to SIMPs
- Physics - Dec 4 Douglas Stanford wins Breakthrough New Horizons Prize
- Astronomy - Nov 27 Less life: Limited phosphorus recycling suppressed early Earth’s biosphere
New year fireworks
Space in Images
In this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image, a firestorm of star birth is lighting up one end of the dwarf galaxy Kiso 5639.
Kiso 5639 is shaped like a pancake but, because it is tilted edge-on, it resembles a skyrocket, with a brilliant blazing head and a long, star-studded tail. Its appearance earns it a place in the "tadpole" class of galaxies.
The bright pink head is from the glow of hydrogen, lit up by the burst of new stars. The mass of these young stars equals about a million Suns. The stars are grouped into large clusters that formed less than a million years ago.
Stars consist mainly of hydrogen and helium, but cook up heavier elements such as oxygen and carbon. When the stars die, they release their heavy elements and enrich the surrounding gas. In Kiso 5639, the bright gas in the galaxy’s head is more deficient in heavy elements than the rest of the galaxy. Astronomers think that the latest star-formation event was triggered when the galaxy accreted primordial gas from its surroundings, since intergalactic space contains more pristine, hydrogen-rich gas.
Cavities in the gas are due to numerous supernova detonations - like bursts of fireworks in the sky - carving out holes of superheated gas.
The elongated tail, seen stretching away from the galaxy’s head and scattered with bright blue stars, contains at least four distinct star-forming regions. These stars appear to be older than those in the star-forming head.
Wispy filaments, comprising gas and some stars, extend from the main body of the cosmic tadpole.
The observations were taken in February 2015 and July 2015 with Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3. Kiso 5639 is 82 million light-years from us and its head is some 2700 light-years across.
This image was first released in June 2016.
Last job offers
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Associate Senior University Lecturer in Astronomy, oriented towards Galaxy Formation PA2017/3745
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Research Associate x 2 (Fixed Term)
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Astronomy - Research Associate (NN26361)