“Spotters Guide” for Detecting Black Hole Collisions

When it comes to the many mysteries of the Universe, a special category is reserved for black holes. Since they are invisible to the naked eye, they remain visibly undetected, and scientists are forced to rely on “seeing” the effects their intense gravity has on nearby stars and gas clouds in order to study them. […]

Where Have All the Pulsars Gone? The Mystery at the Center of Our Galaxy

The galactic center is a happening place, with lots of gas, dust, stars, and surprising binary stars orbiting a supermassive black hole about three million times the size of our sun. With so many stars, astronomers estimate that there should be hundreds of dead ones. But to date, scientists have found only a single young pulsar at […]

Remembering the “World War I Eclipse”

The paths of total solar eclipses care not for political borders or conflicts, often crossing over war-torn lands. Such was the case a century ago this week on August 21st, 1914 when a total solar eclipse crossed over Eastern Europe shortly after the outbreak of World War I.(…)Read the rest of Remembering the “World War […]

NASA’S NuSTAR Catches a Black Hole Bending Light, Space, and Time

NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) has captured a spectacular event: a supermassive black hole’s gravity tugging on nearby X-ray light. In just a matter of days, the corona — a cloud of particles traveling near the speed of light — fell in toward the black hole. The observations are a powerful test of Einstein’s […]