🔭Free Astronomy Magazine November-December 2018🔭
4 Hayabusa2 at work on Ryugu
A space mission that sees a group of small probes exploring a primordial asteroid, largely made up of
pristine material possibly unchanged for billions of years, is underway. One of the most important goals
of the mission is to bring back to Earth samples of that material. Analyzed in the laboratory, the...
18 Ireland to join the European Southern Observatory
Irish astronomers are set to gain access to the world’s most advanced ground-based astronomical telescopes following the signature
of Ireland’s Accession Agreement in Dublin today, 26 September 2018.
The signing of the Agreement follows the unanimous approval of Irish membership by the ESO Council...
20 ALMA observed an unstoppable monster in the early Universe
Astronomers obtained the most detailed anatomy chart of a monster galaxy located 12.4 billion lightyears away. Using the Atacama
Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), the team revealed that the
molecular clouds in the galaxy are highly unstable, which leads to runaway star formation. Monster...
22 The mystery of Sacramento Peak
In September, a famous astronomical observatory located on the Sacramento Mountains, in New Mexico,
was the scene of a mysterious operation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. For about ten days, all
the facilities of the scientific institute and the surrounding residences were evacuated. The secrecy...
32 Superflares from young red dwarf stars imperil planets
The word “HAZMAT” describes substances that pose a risk to the environment, or even to life itself.
Imagine the term being applied to entire planets, where violent flares from the host star may make
worlds uninhabitable by affecting their atmospheres. NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope is observing...
34 Largest galaxy proto-supercluster found
A team of astronomers, led by Olga Cucciati of Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica (INAF) Bologna, have used
the VIMOS instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) to identify a gigantic proto-supercluster of
galaxies forming in the early Universe, just 2.3 billion years after the Big Bang. This structure, which the...
36 Astronomers propose a new method for detecting black holes
A stellar-mass black hole is a compact object with a mass greater than 3 solar masses. It is so dense and
has such a powerful force of attraction that not even light can escape from it. That is why it cannot be
observed directly, but only via the effects it produces, in the present case on its companion star, from...
38 The first exomoon awaits validation
One of the new frontiers of astrobiology is the search for habitable moons beyond the Solar System. For
some years now, a few projects have been carried out to identify natural satellites in orbit around giant
planets, which in turn orbit in the habitable zone of stars not very dissimilar to the Sun. So far, we have...
48 A Universe aglow
An unexpected abundance of Lyman-alpha emission in the Hubble Ultra Deep Field (HUDF) region was
discovered by an international team of astronomers using the MUSE instrument on ESO’s Very Large
Telescope (VLT). The discovered emission covers nearly the entire field of view — leading the team to...
50 First science with ALMA’s highest frequency capabilities
A team of scientists using the highest-frequency capabilities of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter
Array (ALMA) has uncovered jets of warm water vapor streaming away from a newly forming star. The
researchers also detected the “fingerprints” of an astonishing assortment of molecules near this stellar...