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The collision of two neutron stars creates a space monster

The collision of two neutron stars creates a space monster 86

A burst of gamma rays released more energy in half a second than the sun would produce in 10 billion years.

Scientists have discovered a short burst of gamma radiation from the collision of two neutron stars, which releases more energy in half a second than the Sun in 10 billion years of its life. It is teported by New Atlas.

Collisions of neutron stars are some of the most impressive cataclysms in the universe. In a matter of seconds, they release more energy than the sun will generate in its entire long life. Such an explosion is a thousand times more powerful than the outburst of a new star (which in itself is by no means a mere firecracker), therefore it is called a kilonova.

In the Universe there are quite a few flares of a different nature, and astronomers rarely manage to prove that they observed exactly the collision of neutron stars.

The first event, which definitely could not be anything else, was recorded only in 2017 . Since then, several more kilonova , or, as cautious scientists prefer to put it, kilonova candidates have been discovered. However, the GRB 200522A event, which the researchers report about in the current scientific article, is something special.

The flare, dubbed 200522A, occurred 5.47 billion light years from Earth and was 10 times brighter than the light of a new neutron star.

Gamma-ray bursts are extremely high energy phenomena that occur during events such as a supernova explosion. Such bursts can last up to several hours, but if their lifetime is less than 2 seconds, they are called short bursts of gamma radiation. 

Until recently, these short bursts were thought to arise either from the collision of two neutron stars generating enormous amounts of energy before collapsing into a black hole, or from the collision of a neutron star with a black hole absorbing the first.

The collision of two neutron stars creates a space monster 87

The mainstream theory was that either scenario would end up with a black hole. But NASA’s Neil Gerels Swift Observatory detected the 200522A flare.

Short gamma-ray bursts have been observed across the entire electromagnetic spectrum, from radio emission to X-rays. The Hubble Telescope found that the detected flash did not disappear as expected. 

Instead, it glowed in the infrared light 10 times brighter than theory predicted. According to scientists, this means that instead of forming a black hole, the collision of neutron stars produced a new star called a magnetar.

Neutron stars are stars that have about the same mass as the Sun, but their diameter is only about 20 km.

The peculiarity of the 200522A flare was that its brightness was at the very bottom of the supernova scale. Instead of forming a black hole, neutron stars merged like their magnetic fields to form a magnetar – a massive star with an equally massive magnetic field. 


In December, Earth’s inhabitants will be able to see a rare cosmic phenomenon

In December, Earth's inhabitants will be able to see a rare cosmic phenomenon 98

At the end of the year, astronomers expect to see a rare cosmic phenomenon dubbed the “Christmas star” in the sky. It will be caused by the fact that Saturn and Jupiter come close to each other at a minimum distance and almost collide to become one super-bright point of light.

These two planets became one straight line in the solar system a few weeks ago, but at the end of December they will be on it for observers from Earth. This will happen on December 21, 2020, on the day of the winter solstice, when the daylight hours are the shortest and the night is the longest. Jupiter and Saturn will look like a “double planet” for the first time since the Middle Ages, Forbes writes.

“The conjunctions of the two planets are extremely rare, but this particular conjunction is especially rare because the planets will be very close to each other,” Patrick Hartigan, astronomer at Rice University, USA said. “In order to observe a closer conjunction of these planets in the night sky, we would have to return on March 4, 1226.”

It is noted that the unusual celestial phenomenon can be observed from anywhere on the planet. The main thing is that the sky is clear. The “Christmas Star” can be seen in the western sky about an hour after sunset when viewed from the northern hemisphere.

“On the evening of their closest approach, December 21, they will appear as a twin planet, separated by less than 1/5 the diameter of the full moon,” Hartigan said. “For most amateur astronomers looking at the night sky through a telescope, both planets and several of their largest satellites will be in the same field of view this evening.”

In December, Earth's inhabitants will be able to see a rare cosmic phenomenon 99

Those who want to see Jupiter and Saturn converge in the sky as close, but will be higher above the horizon, will have to wait until March 15, 2080, Hartigan said. After that, a similar configuration for this planetary pair will not be observed until 2400.

Astronomers are already preparing equipment to analyze in detail the upcoming event. Everything is very serious, because the second such rapprochement between Jupiter and Saturn cannot be expected.

Of course, there will not be a collision of planets. You just get the impression that something terrible is about to happen in the solar system. Astronomers have assured that there is no reason to worry.

Is the “Christmas Star” an omen of things to come? Mark your calendars! 

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A giant asteroid worth $ 17.4 billion is approaching Earth

A giant asteroid worth $ 17.4 billion is approaching Earth 100

NASA announced the imminent flight of a potentially dangerous asteroid will pass the Earth. The website of the Center for the Study of Near-Earth Objects says that a celestial body ranging in size from 370 to 820 meters will approach the planet on November 29.

The asteroid, consisting of nickel, iron and cobalt, is approaching the Earth. The cost of minerals in its composition reaches $ 17.4 billion, with reference to the Asterank database, which contains data on 600 thousand asteroids.

The distance between the asteroid 153201 (2000 WO107) and the Earth will be more than 4 million kilometers, the Space Reference specified with reference to NASA data. It is noted that the distance from the Earth to the Moon is 10 times less, and the asteroid is considered dangerous because it crosses the orbit of our planet.

According to the NASA Center for the Study of Near-Earth Objects, the celestial body will approach the Earth on November 29. 

It is noted that this time the asteroid does not pose a threat to the planet, however, it belongs to the group of potentially dangerous ones, since its trajectory crosses the Earth’s orbit.

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Intrusive buzzing. The Perseverance rover recorded the space sounds of its flight to Mars

Intrusive buzzing. The Perseverance rover recorded the space sounds of its flight to Mars 101

NASA’s new rover is equipped with a microphone to record sounds during landing on the Red Planet.

NASA’s Perseverance rover, which is en route to Mars, has recorded its flight to the planet.

The new rover is equipped with a microphone designed to record sound when entering the atmosphere, descent and landing. The device should arrive on the Red Planet in February 2021.

But before the rover reached its destination, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) released an audio file recording what the rover “hears” during its interplanetary voyage.

The 60-second recording, posted on SoundCloud, was captured on Oct.19 while checking the rover’s EDL and microphone system.

Experts explain that the buzzing sound comes from a pump that pumps fluid to regulate the rover’s temperature.

NASA compares the new hit for your playlist to the noise you hear on wired headphones when the wire rubs against your clothing. It was these mechanical vibrations that the Perseverance microphone picked up.

“Located at the rear of the starboard side of the Perseverance, the pump is part of the unit’s heat system that maintains operating temperatures for the equipment, even in the coldest locations,” JPL said in a statement.

“I apologize to the person who came up with the slogan for the film” Alien “(” No one in space will hear your scream “- ed.), Perhaps no one will hear the scream, but perhaps a pump to remove heat will be heard,” says a leading engineer at JPL Dave Gruel.

He added that the microphone picks up the hum of the pump through mechanical vibration.

The Perseverance rover is supposed to land on Mars on February 18, 2021 in the Jezero crater – it is believed that a riverbed used to pass through this area. This is one of those places where traces of living organisms on the planet could be preserved.

The main mission of the rover is to detect signs of life in order to advance the study of the ancient history of Mars. In addition, the device will become part of a mission to deliver samples from the surface of the red planet: it will dig out rock at certain points, and then another device will pick them up, which will send them to Earth.

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