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“Planetary Nebulae” receive more meaningful physical presence

22 November 2015 Astronomy Now

Despite their name, planetary nebulae have nothing to do with planets. They were described as such by early astronomers whose telescopes showed them as glowing disc-like objects, but we now know that they represent the final stage of activity of stars like our Sun. A way of estimating more accurate distances to planetary nebulae dispersed across our Galaxy has just been announced.

News

Celestial firework marks nearest galaxy collision

16 August 2015 Astronomy Now

A spectacular galaxy collision has been discovered lurking behind the Milky Way, the closest such system ever found. “Kathryn’s Wheel” was found during a special wide field survey of the Southern Milky Way with the UK Schmidt Telescope in Australia. Such systems are very rare and arise from “bull’s-eye” collisions between two galaxies of similar mass.