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Four Laser Beams Will Create The World's Most Powerful Fake Stars

Image Cache: Set lasers to star mode. The European Southern Observatory’s Paranal Observatory in Chile now has four powerful laser beams with which to create artificial stars in the night sky.


A Dozen Black Holes Are Mysteriously Spewing Energy In The Same Direction

Something strange is going on in a distant corner of our universe. About a dozen supermassive black holes are all shooting enormous jets of energy in roughly the same direction. It could be a cosmic coincidence — but some astronomers suspect there are larger forces at play.


Breathtaking Visualisation Of The Universe Will Make You Feel Like An Ant

On the grandest scale, our universe is a network of galaxies tied together by the force of gravity. Cosmic Web, a new effort led by cosmologists and designers at Northeastern’s Center for Complex Network Research, offers a roadmap toward understanding how all of those tremendous clusters of stars connect — and the visualisations are stunning.


The Kepler Space Telescope Is Alive Again After Scaring The Hell Out Of Everyone

After creating a minor panic when it went into Emergency Mode two weeks ago, the Kepler Space Telescope is back to doing science. As of 1:30am AEST (11:30am ET) today, it’s continuing the search for planets beyond our solar system.


NASA Celebrates Hubble's 26th Birthday With Some Spectacular New Space Porn

What better way to celebrate Hubble’s 26th birthday than by releasing a gorgeous new photo taken by the intrepid space telescope. Behold the Bubble Nebula, a massive expanse of gas and dust located 8000 light-years from Earth.


The Ghost Of A Long-Dead Star Still Haunts Our Solar System

A few million years ago, humans’ ancestors might have gazed in wonder at a strange, brilliant blue spot in the night sky. It was the aftermath of an epic stellar explosion, maybe two. Had these supernovae occurred a little closer to home, life on Earth would have been toast.


How To Watch Tonight's Lyrid Meteor Shower In Australia

For the rest of the year Australia has roughly one meteor shower per month to look forward to, and the next one is coming up tonight — the Lyrids. We explain how to watch, and when.


This Sky Map Was Created Using A Telescope Made From Water

You can look at the night sky in plenty of ways — but you might be surprised to learn that using gigantic drums of water is surprisingly effective, creating maps of the sky like this.


Hawking's Interstellar Starship Would Revolutionise The Search For Alien Life

Yesterday, Stephen Hawking and Yuri Milner made the mind-blowing announcement that they want to build a fleet of interstellar spacecraft that can travel at relativistic speeds — up to 20 per cent the speed of light. But it’s not just about reaching our nearest star system, Alpha Centauri, although that is the new Breakthrough project’s moonshot. The technology Hawking and Milner are proposing could revolutionise the search for alien life within our solar system.


Astronomers Found Evidence For Exoplanets 100 Years Ago And Didn't Know It

University archives are treasure troves of historic information, but it’s not every day they produce scientific discoveries. But now, a 1917 astronomical glass plate from the Cargenie Observatory’s collection is offering the oldest evidence for a planet orbiting another star — besting the first confirmed exoplanet detection by more than 70 years.


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