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China launches its first X-ray space telescope

BEIJING: China successfully launched on Thursday its first X-ray space telescope to study black holes, pulsars and gamma-ray bursts, state media reported. A Long March-4B rocket carried the 2.5-tonne telescope into orbit from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China’s Gobi Desert at 11:00 am (3:00 GMT), according to the official Xinhua news agency…

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Skygazers gear up for extra bright ‘supermoon’

JAKARTA: Skygazers were heading to high-rise buildings, ancient forts and beaches Monday to witness the closest “supermoon” to Earth in almost seven decades, hoping for dramatic photos and spectacular surf. The unusually big and bright Moon will appear at its most impressive just as night falls over Asia, but astronomy enthusiasts will be able to…

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Lunar eclipse on 16th Sept, visibility likely in Pakistan

LAHORE: Pakistan Meteorological Department announced Saturday morning that people in Pakistan will be able to view the lunar eclipse scheduled to take place next week, Samaa reported.   The second and final lunar eclipse for this year, it will take place between 16th and 17th September’s night and will be visible to people in Pakistan…

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What was that explosion? A meteor, it turns out

BUENOS AIRES: Residents of a city in southern Argentina got a scare when a series of powerful explosions shook homes and buildings Wednesday, but the cause turned out to be a natural wonder: a meteor disintegrating overhead. It was an ordinary Wednesday afternoon in General Roca, a city of 85,000 people, when suddenly a series…

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Researchers again detect gravitational waves from black hole merger

WASHINGTON: Scientists have observed gravitational waves produced by the collision of two black holes for the second time in three months, researchers announced Wednesday. Albert Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational waves in his theory of relativity a century ago, and scientists have been able to detect the waves with an instrument known as the…

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A new, water-logged history of the Moon

PARIS: After the Apollo missions scooped up rocks from the Moon’s surface and brought them home, scientists were convinced for decades that they had proof our nearest celestial neighbour was drier than a bone. How wrong they were. New technology detected water in those dusty samples nearly a decade ago, and a new study, published…

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Solar eclipse begins sweeping across Indonesia

TERNATE: A solar eclipse began sweeping across the vast Indonesian archipelago on Wednesday, with hordes of sky gazers set to watch the spectacle, which will be marked by parties, prayers and tribal rituals. The moon began to move between the Earth and sun at 6:19 am (2319 GMT Tuesday), the official Meteorology, Climate and Geophysics…

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Astronomers spot widest solar system: study

LONDON: Astronomers have found the widest-known solar system, with a huge planet so far from its star that it takes nearly a million years to complete an orbit, according to a new study. Long thought to be a free-floating or lonely planet without a solar system “home”, scientists have now linked it to a star…

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‘Ninth planet’ may exist in solar system: US scientists

MIAMI: A previously unknown giant planet may have been discovered lurking in the outer reaches of our solar system, US scientists announced on Wednesday. Nicknamed Planet Nine, the object “has a mass about 10 times that of Earth” and follows a “bizarre, highly elongated orbit in the distant solar system,” said a statement by researchers…

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Pluto reveals variety of rich colors, stunning experts

WASHINGTON: Pluto contains a rich variety of colors on its surface, according to observations out Thursday from NASA’s New Horizons probe that stunned astronomers. The probe’s first published science results revealed dark red parts at the equator of the dwarf planet to lighter and bluer regions at higher latitudes. Previously experts did not have a…

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Study shows Pluto's moons in chaos

CAPE CANAVERAL: Pluto’s outer moons are continuously toppled and turned as they battle the joint gravitational forces of their parent planet and its primary moon Charon, a study published on Wednesday showed. “It as if Pluto and Charon are two weights at the end of a dumbbell, two very unbalanced weights, and that dumbbell is…

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Ancient galaxy sheds light on dust as starmaker

PARIS: One of the oldest galaxies ever observed has revealed that dust played a vital role in the infancy of the Universe, astronomers reported on Monday. Grains of dust are the tiny building blocks of the cosmos. Made from carbon, silicon, magnesium, iron and oxygen, they are formed in the nuclear combustion of a star….

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