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Earliest Black Hole Gives Rare Glimpse of Ancient Universe
It weighs as much as 780 million suns and helped to cast off the cosmic Dark Ages. But now that astronomers have found the earliest known black hole, they wonder: How could this giant have grown so big, so fast?
Galactic Glow, Thought to Be Dark Matter, Now Hints at Hidden Pulsars
A number of high-energy anomalies raised hopes that astrophysicists had seen their first direct glimpses of dark matter. New studies suggest a different source may be responsible.
‘Crazy’ Supernova Looks Like a New Kind of Star Death
Astronomers are mystified by a strange star explosion in a distant galaxy that might be a relic from an earlier cosmological era.
From the Edge of the Universe to the Inside of a Proton
The Zoomable Universe, a new book by the astrobiologist Caleb Scharf, the illustrator Ron Miller and 5W Infographics, tours the universe’s 62 orders of magnitude.
Squishy or Solid? A Neutron Star’s Insides Open to Debate
The core of a neutron star is such an extreme environment that physicists can’t agree on what happens inside. But a new space-based experiment — and a few more colliding neutron stars — should reveal whether neutrons themselves break down.
Colliding Neutron Stars Could Settle the Biggest Debate in Cosmology
Newly discovered “standard sirens” provide an independent, clean way to measure how fast the universe is expanding.