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Wall of gas divides
cosmic metropolis

...A new study from the Chandra X-ray Observatory unveils the star-forming factory NGC 604 as a divided neighbourhood...

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Supermassive black holes not guilty of shutting down star formation

...Galaxies cease star formation long before their supermassive black holes have the power to do the job themselves...

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C1XS takes first taste of lunar X-rays

...The UK-built C1XS instrument flying aboard the Chandrayaan-1 orbiter has successfully detected its first X-ray signature from the Moon...

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Video archive

STS-120 day 2 highlights

Flight Day 2 of Discovery's mission focused on heat shield inspections. This movie shows the day's highlights.


STS-120 day 1 highlights

The highlights from shuttle Discovery's launch day are packaged into this movie.


STS-118: Highlights

The STS-118 crew, including Barbara Morgan, narrates its mission highlights film and answers questions in this post-flight presentation.

 Full presentation
 Mission film

STS-120: Rollout to pad

Space shuttle Discovery rolls out of the Vehicle Assembly Building and travels to launch pad 39A for its STS-120 mission.


Dawn leaves Earth

NASA's Dawn space probe launches aboard a Delta 2-Heavy rocket from Cape Canaveral to explore two worlds in the asteroid belt.

 Full coverage

Dawn: Launch preview

These briefings preview the launch and science objectives of NASA's Dawn asteroid orbiter.

 Launch | Science

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Hubble’s Next Discovery - You Decide



Posted: 23 February, 2009

Members of the public have one week left to determine where to point modern astronomy’s most famous telescope.

“Hubble’s Next Discovery - You Decide” is part of the International Year of Astronomy’s (IYA) goal to engage the public in all things astronomy related. People around the world will have the opportunity to vote for one of six objects never before viewed by Hubble, from planetary nebula to merging galaxies and star-forming regions.

You decide which object Hubble will see! Running order correct as of Monday 23 Feb, 1600 GMT.

Currently in first place is Arp 274, a pair of interacting galaxies drawn together by their gravity. The spiral shapes of the galaxies are still largely intact, but gravitational distortions are being stirred up inside them. Star-forming region NGC 6334 is also up for consideration. It is a giant cloud of gas and dust, collapsing to create thousands of newborn stars. Young stars emit high-energy radiation that causes the remaining gas to glow. Two spiral galaxies and two planetary nebula make up the other choices. Planetary nebulae are the shells shed by a dying star - and lend themselves to being imaged by Hubble, which can pick up the intricacies of the shells’ structures in great detail.

The choice is yours as to which one Hubble sees in new light. Vote online at by 1 March. The winning image will be released during the IYA’s week of 100 hours of astronomy, between 2 and 5 April.

100 hours of astronomy is one of the IYA's Cornerstone Projects consisting of a wide range of public outreach activities, research centre podcasts and sidewalk astronomy events. One of the key goals is to encourage as many people as possible to look through a telescope as Galileo did 400 years ago. For more information on IYA events visit