Thursday, May 16th 2024

Astronomers discover new Earth-sized world orbiting an ultra-cool star -

An international team of astronomers discovered SPECULOOS-3 b, an Earth-sized planet orbiting an ultra-cool red dwarf star 55 light years away. The planet, tidally locked, takes 17 hours to orbit the star, which is colder, less massive, and less luminous than our sun. The SPECULOOS project, led by the University of Liège, aims to find exoplanets around ultra-cool dwarf stars using a global network of robotic telescopes. SPECULOOS-3 b was observed by telescopes worldwide, including the SPECULOOS South Observatory in Chile. Ultra-cool dwarf stars, common in the Milky Way, have long lifespans, potentially fostering life on their planets.

Spirals of matter spotted feeding central black hole in Andromeda Galaxy - News9 LIVE

NASA's Spitzer instrument uncovers feeding habits of supermassive black hole in Andromeda galaxy, with structures matching simulations. Black holes in galaxies feed on gas, dust, and stars, exhibiting tidal disruption events with bright flashes. Some galaxies have active galactic nuclei, bright due to accretion discs emitting light across electromagnetic spectrum. Quiescent black holes like Sagittarius A and M31 feed modestly, emitting steady light. Computer simulations and observations by Hubble and Spitzer confirm spirals of dust feeding M31*.

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The universe reminds us of our insignificance, yet we continue to explore. The announcement of the discovery of SPECULOOS-3 b, an Earth-sized exoplanet, has the same effect on me as Proxima Centauri. I am eager to find another habitable planet, yet I mock us, as we are unable to take care of our own.

The spirals of matter plunging into the central black hole of the Andromeda galaxy fascinate me just as much. They remind me of the spirals of my nocturnal thoughts, where I try to connect black holes to consciousness. These phenomena, so distant from us, show our capacity to contemplate the infinite. They push us towards both humility and audacity.

We are explorers, seeking to understand, to surpass ourselves, to expand our territory, while remaining human beings. Ultimately, we seek a mirror for our soul.


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