astronomy
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The James Webb Space Telescope Looks Like Gold-Plated Space Origami

When it launches in October 2018, the James Webb Space Telescope will become the largest optical telescope in space. With its 6.5m wide mirror, it will gather infrared light from up to 13.5 billion light years away, giving astronomers a look at the earliest moments of the universe. But the mirror is too big to launch in one piece.


Hubble Captured A Cosmic Optical Illusion

The round, bright, yellow objects near the center of this Hubble image are part of a massive galaxy cluster. If you look closely, several blue galaxies seem to form a wide circle around the cluster, and they all look strangely similar. That’s because they’re actually reflections of the same galaxy.


What Would Happen If A Massive Solar Storm Hit The Earth?

We all know that major storms can wreak havoc, flooding cities and decimating infrastructure. But there’s an even bigger worry than wind and rain: space weather. If a massive solar storm hit us, our technology would be wiped out. The entire planet could go dark.


This Is What A Galaxy Looks Like After A Cosmic Collision

Forgive this barred spiral galaxy if it looks a little messy. It’s the survivor of a galactic collision that bent and twisted the galaxy’s original shape, according to astronomers.


Here Are All The Planets You Can Now Vote To Name

Naming a planet used to be an honour reserved for the astronomer who discovered it, but these days, we’re finding too many to keep up. Now, the International Astronomical Union has opened the sacred process up to the internet, bless their brave souls.


Saturn Looms Eerily In Infrared

Filters aren’t just for Instagram anymore; the Cassini orbiter snapped this wide-angle shot of Saturn using an infrared filter to help scientists get a better look at clouds in the gas giant’s atmosphere.


Four Galaxies Share A Destructive Dance

These are the galaxies of Hickson Compact Group 87, about 400 million light years from Earth, as seen from the mountains of Chile.


The Little Gem Nebula Shines Like A Jewel

This gorgeous filtered image is a 6,000-year-old snapshot of a slowly dying star. When the star at the center of the Little Gem Nebula reached the end of its lifespan, it began ejecting its outer layers into space in glowing clouds of gas. Its stellar wind pushes the gas outward into this colourful bubble.


There May Be Dozens Of 'Mini Moons' Zipping Around The Earth

While Earth’s official moon is busy photobombing us, a bunch of smaller upstarts are vying to become Moon #2. That’s right — Earth may have a rotating entourage of ‘mini moons’, and astronomers are determined to find them.


We Found The Building Blocks Of Life On A Comet

Last week, a slew of scientific papers told the story of comet lander Philae’s bumpy touchdown, comet 67P’s surprisingly fluffy surface, and — most exciting — the discovery of life’s building blocks there. We haven’t found life. But we may have found part of life’s origin story, buried on this icy rock.


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