AAS NOVA — Research Highlights 2019

Find out the latest thinking about our universe.
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Catching Radio Signals from Colliding Objects

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 14, 2019 9:58 pm

Catching Radio Signals from Colliding Objects
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jun 26
Susanna Kohler wrote:
The merger of two compact objects — neutron stars or black holes — could be accompanied by a sudden, immediate flash of radio emission, according to predictions. Can an array of antennas in California help us spot these signals? ...

A First Search for Prompt Radio Emission from a Gravitational-Wave Event ~ Thomas A. Callister et al
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Testing Collapsars as the Key to Heavy Elements

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:04 pm

Testing Collapsars as the Key to Heavy Elements
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jun 28
Susanna Kohler wrote:
How do we get the heavy elements — elements with atomic mass above iron, like gold, platinum, or uranium — in our universe? A new study suggests that one theorized source, collapsing massive stars, may not be the best option. ...

Constraining Collapsar r-process Models through Stellar Abundances ~ Phillip Macias, Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz
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Reinterpreting Planet-Driven Gaps

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:10 pm

Reinterpreting Planet-Driven Gaps
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 03
Susanna Kohler wrote:
The stunning substructures of gaps and rings revealed in protoplanetary disks have been attributed to the motions of hidden, newly formed planets. But are we interpreting our observations correctly? ...
On the Planetary Interpretation of Multiple Gaps and Rings
in Protoplanetary Disks Seen By ALMA
~ Ryan Miranda, Roman R. Rafikov
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Can We Detect Gravitational Waves from Core-Collapse Supernovae?

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:19 pm

Can We Detect Gravitational Waves from Core-Collapse Supernovae?
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 05
Kerry Hensley wrote:
When massive stars explode as supernovae, they fling shredded stellar material into the interstellar medium. The explosion should also generate gravitational waves, but astronomers haven’t detected any yet. Is it just a matter of time before we detect gravitational waves from core-collapse supernovae, or are the signals still out of reach? ...

Characterizing the Gravitational Wave Signal from Core-collapse Supernovae ~ David Radice et al
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How Venus Reacts when the Sun Strikes

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:28 pm

How Venus Reacts when the Sun Strikes
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 08
Susanna Kohler wrote:
What happens to Venus when an enormous solar eruption slams into the planet? In 2011, the Venus Express spacecraft was on site to find out! ...

Observations of the Venus Dramatic Response to an Extremely
Strong Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejection
~ Qi Xu et al
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Exploring a Black-Hole Mass Conundrum

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:35 pm

Exploring a Black-Hole Mass Conundrum
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 10
Susanna Kohler wrote:
When the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) discovered its first merging black holes, astronomers were surprised: these black holes were much larger than we had expected! A new study looks at what these observations might tell us about black holes in star clusters. ...

Constraining the Black Hole Initial Mass Function with LIGO/VIRGO Observations ~ Rosalba Perna et al
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Exploring an Odd Stellar Death

Post by bystander » Thu Jul 18, 2019 3:40 pm

Exploring an Odd Stellar Death
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 17
Susanna Kohler wrote:
Massive stars can die in a lot of different ways! A new study explores one possible channel in more detail. ...

Massive Stellar Mergers as Precursors of Hydrogen-Rich
Pulsational Pair Instability Supernovae
~ Alejandro Vigna-Gómez et al
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Heating Up a Solar Flare

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:22 pm

Heating Up a Solar Flare
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 19
Kerry Hensley wrote:
Powerful solar flares are dazzlingly bright in ultraviolet and X-ray images of the Sun. Despite their demands for attention, there’s still a lot that we don’t know about these unpredictable eruptions. ...

The Response of the Lyα Line in Different Flare Heating Models ~ Jie Hong et al
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Five Years Watching Volcanoes on Another World

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:14 pm

Five Years Watching Volcanoes on Another World
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 22
Susanna Kohler wrote:
For all that space telescopes are powerful tools for exploring our universe, we can achieve some remarkable science using ground-based observations! A new study explores the lessons learned from five years of monitoring Jupiter’s volcanic moon Io from the ground. ...

Io's Volcanic Activity from Time Domain Adaptive Optics Observations: 2013-2018 ~ Katherine de Kleer et al
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A Speedier Check of Models

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:22 pm

A Speedier Check of Models
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Jul 24
Susanna Kohler wrote:
Astronomy is driven forward by a combination of novel observations and complex, inventive modeling. How can astronomers better analyze their models? A new study presents a tool for the job — and is also the first article published under a new partnership between the American Astronomical Society (AAS) and the Journal of Open Source Software. ...

Model Dispersion with PRISM: An Alternative to MCMC for Rapid Analysis of Models ~ Ellert van der Velden et al
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Inferring History from Atmospheres

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:40 pm

Inferring History from Atmospheres
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 01
Susanna Kohler wrote:
Can we use clues from the present to figure out how a planet has been blasted by the radiation of its host star in the past? According to a new study, it’s a definite possibility. ...

Close-in Sub-Neptunes Reveal the Past Rotation History of Their Host Stars: Atmospheric
Evolution of Planets in the HD 3167 and K2-32 Planetary Systems
~ Daria Kubyshkina et al
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Not so Fast: Some Stars Show a Spin-down Slowdown

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:46 pm

Not so Fast: Some Stars Show a Spin-down Slowdown
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 03
Kerry Hensley wrote:
Many people start to slow down as they age, and stars seem to be the same way. Astronomers measure how fast stars spin to determine their ages, but new measurements suggest that some stars may wind down more quickly than others. ...

A Temporary Epoch of Stalled Spin-down for Low-mass Stars:
Insights from NGC 6811 with Gaia and Kepler
~ Jason Lee Curtis et al
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Using Mergers to Understand Neutron Stars

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:53 pm

Using Mergers to Understand Neutron Stars
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 05
Susanna Kohler wrote:
There’s still a lot we don’t know about the internal structure and behavior of neutron stars, the compact remnants of giant, collapsed stars. Can the mergers of neutron stars with another type of exotic object, black holes, reveal important information? ...
Constraining the Neutron Star Radius with Joint Gravitational-Wave and Short
Gamma-Ray Burst Observations of Neutron Star-Black Hole Coalescing Binaries
~ Stefano Ascenzi et al
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An “Impossible” White Dwarf Identified in Kepler Data

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:42 pm

An “Impossible” White Dwarf Identified in Kepler Data
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 07
Susanna Kohler wrote:
Though Kepler’s primary mission ended years ago, the resulting dataset remains a vast playground in which astronomers continue to discover new surprises in stellar light curves. The latest? Evidence of a white dwarf that defies all expectations. ...

Self-lensing Discovery of a 0.2 M White Dwarf
in an Unusually Wide Orbit around a Sun-like Star
~ Kento Masuda et al
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Spotting Molecular Gas in the Distant Universe

Post by bystander » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:48 pm

Spotting Molecular Gas in the Distant Universe
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 09
Susanna Kohler wrote:
Let’s be honest: the universe has an awful lot of gas. But the gas discovered in a new study isn’t your run-of-the-mill atomic gas! We’ve now found dense, star-formation-enabling molecular gas farther out than ever before. ...

A Luminous Molecular Gas Pair beyond Redshift 7 ~ Ekaterina Koptelova, Chorng-Yuan Hwang
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A Nearby Stellar Stream Gets Carded

Post by bystander » Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:58 pm

A Nearby Stellar Stream Gets Carded
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 14
Susanna Kohler wrote:
Pisces–Eridanus may try to pass itself off as a billion years old, but scientists are calling its bluff. The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) has now carded this nearby stream of stars, revealing that it’s actually a relative baby! ...

TESS Reveals that the Nearby Pisces–Eridanus Stellar Stream is only 120 Myr Old ~ Jason L. Curtis et al
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Launching a Stellar Superflare

Post by bystander » Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:05 pm

Launching a Stellar Superflare
NOVA | American Astronomical Society | 2019 Aug 16
Kerry Hensley wrote:
With energies a thousand times greater than an average solar flare, stellar superflares can strip away atmospheres and endanger life on planetary surfaces. These violent outbursts often go hand in hand with coronal mass ejections, shaping the evolution of planets near and far. ...

Modeling a Carrington-scale Stellar Superflare and Coronal Mass Ejection from κ1Cet ~ Benjamin J. Lynch et al
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