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Institute of Astronomy

 
Read more at: ESA gives go-ahead for flagship gravitational-wave observatory in space

ESA gives go-ahead for flagship gravitational-wave observatory in space

25 January 2024

germl2rwwaa-rym.jpeg Following today´s Adoption, the LISA mission advances to the construction phase LISA, the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna, has passed a major review with flying colours: the entire concept - from the definition of the overall mission and operations to the space hardware to be built - stood up to the...


Read more at: International team awarded $3.7M to build a next generation haloscope to search for the axion

International team awarded $3.7M to build a next generation haloscope to search for the axion

19 January 2024

hp_dec_23_art.jpeg Physics breakthroughs don’t always require city-sized particle colliders or giant radio telescope arrays. The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation , the Simons Foundation , the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the John Templeton Foundation have partnered to fund 11 innovative “tabletop” experiments, many of...


Read more at: Webb reveals that galaxy mergers are the solution to early Universe mystery

Webb reveals that galaxy mergers are the solution to early Universe mystery

18 January 2024

weic2402a-2.jpg One of the key missions of the NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope is to probe the early Universe. Now, the unmatched resolution and sensitivity of Webb’s NIRCam instrument have revealed, for the first time, what lies in the local environment of galaxies in the very early Universe. This has solved one...


Read more at: Bouncing comets could deliver building blocks for life to exoplanets

Bouncing comets could deliver building blocks for life to exoplanets

16 November 2023

How did the molecular building blocks for life end up on Earth? One long-standing theory is that they could have been delivered by comets. Now, researchers from the IoA have shown how comets could deposit similar building blocks to other planets in the galaxy. In order to deliver organic material, comets need to be...


Read more at: MPhil in Planetary Sciences and Life in the Universe launched

MPhil in Planetary Sciences and Life in the Universe launched

28 September 2023

This week sees the launch of Cambridge’s new MPhil qualification in Planetary Sciences and Life in the Universe . The new programme will be jointly taught and led by astronomers, chemists, zoologists, plant biologists, and earth scientists. Applications for the course are now open . The MPhil is a 10-month cross-...


Read more at: Methane and carbon dioxide found in atmosphere of habitable-zone exoplanet

Methane and carbon dioxide found in atmosphere of habitable-zone exoplanet

28 September 2023

Methane and carbon dioxide found in atmosphere of habitable-zone exoplanet An international team of astronomers led by the University of Cambridge has used data from the NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope to discover methane and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of K2-18 b, an exoplanet in the ‘Goldilocks zone’. This...


Read more at: IoA Researcher awarded ERC Starting Grant

IoA Researcher awarded ERC Starting Grant

28 September 2023

Dr Suhail Dhawan is one of three researchers at the University of Cambridge to be awarded this prestigious funding The ERC project is aimed at developing new methods to measure the present day expansion rate of the universe, also known as the Hubble Constant, and its directional dependence to search for new fundamental...


Read more at: More clues to understand our early Universe

More clues to understand our early Universe

31 January 2023

An array of 350 radio telescopes in the Karoo desert of South Africa is getting closer to detecting “the Epoch of Re-ionization” — the era just after the first stars ignited and galaxies began to bloom . In a paper accepted for publication in The Astrophysical Journal , the Hydrogen Epoch of Reionization Array ( HERA )...


Read more at: Dust plumes observed being pushed into interstellar space by intense starlight
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Dust plumes observed being pushed into interstellar space by intense starlight

16 January 2023

Astronomers have observed directly for the first time how intense light from stars can ‘push’ matter. Researchers from the universities of Cambridge and Sydney made the observation when tracking a giant plume of dust generated by the violent interactions between two massive stars. The results , made using infrared images...


Read more at: Study of ‘polluted’ white dwarfs finds that stars and planets grow together
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Study of ‘polluted’ white dwarfs finds that stars and planets grow together

16 January 2023

A team of astronomers have found that planet formation in our young Solar System started much earlier than previously thought, with the building blocks of planets growing at the same time as their parent star. A study of some of the oldest stars in the Universe suggests that the building blocks of planets like Jupiter and...