National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Articles by National Radio Astronomy Observatory

ALMA Observes Most Distant Oxygen Ever

by National Radio Astronomy Observatory

The detection of ionized oxygen indicates that many very brilliant stars, several dozen times more massive than the Sun, have formed in the galaxy and are emitting the intense ultraviolet light needed to ionize the oxygen atoms

Pulsar with Widest Orbit Ever Detected, Discovered By High School Research Team

by National Radio Astronomy Observatory

A team of highly determined high school students discovered a never-before-seen pulsar by painstakingly analyzing data from the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT). Further observations by astronomers using the GBT revealed that this pulsar has the widest orbit of any around a neutron star and is part of only a handful of double neutron star systems.

Organic Molecules in Titan's Atmosphere Are Intriguingly Skewed

by National Radio Astronomy Observatory

While studying the atmosphere on Saturn’s moon Titan, scientists discovered intriguing zones of organic molecules unexpectedly shifted away from its north and south poles. These misaligned features seem to defy conventional thinking about Titan’s windy atmosphere, which should quickly smear out such off-axis concentrations.

Gigantic Explosion Buried in Dust: ALMA Probes Environment around Gamma Ray Bursts

by National Radio Astronomy Observatory

Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), a team of researchers reports the first-ever detection of molecular gas -- the fuel for star formation -- in two galaxies that were previously rocked by gamma ray bursts (GRBs), the brightest explosions in the Universe. These new observations revealed that the molecular gas was concentrated toward the centers of the galaxies, while the GRBs occurred in unusual environments that were surprisingly bereft of gas yet rich in dust. 

Einstein's Gravity Theory Passes Toughest Test Yet

by National Radio Astronomy Observatory
A strange stellar pair nearly 7,000 light-years from Earth has provided physicists with a unique cosmic laboratory for studying the nature of gravity.

ALMA Shows How Young Star and Planets Grow Simultaneously

by National Radio Astronomy Observatory
Astronomers have used the ALMA telescope to get their first glimpse of a fascinating stage of star formation in which planets forming around a young star are helping the star itself continue to grow, resolving a longstanding mystery.