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Japanese Astronomers have used the 8.2m Subaru Telescope.

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Subaru Telescope.
Astronomers have used the 8.2m Subaru Telescope.

Glimpse at the Envelope of a Young star.

Japanese Astronomers have used the 8.2m Subaru telescope to get detailed images of the envelope of gas and dust surrounding a very young star in M17. This envelope extends in a symmetrical butterfly shape about 150 times the size of our Solar System. This image hints at the process of how matter streams into the protostellar disc during early formation of a new star.

Genesis Recovery Proceeding Well.

When NASA's Genesis smashed into the desert last year, mission controllers and scientists feared the worst for the spacecraft's fragile particle collectors. However, after having examined them carefully, it appears that plenty of useful science will be possible with the collected material. The four solar wind collectors, in an instrument called the concentrator are in excellent condition and should help scientists understand how the solar system formed.

Penumbral Lunar Eclipse.

There's going to be a partial lunar eclipse on Sunday, April 24; unfortunately, the Moon will only pass through the faint penumbral shadow, and only dim slightly. Most observers would be hard-pressed to tell the difference. The eclipse gets going at 0955 UT (5:55 am EDT) and ends about 2 hours later. Observers in the Americas should be able to see the eclipse, with the best view for folks in the West.

Solar Nebula Lasted 2 Million Years.

The planets in our solar system formed more than 4.6 billion years ago from cloud of dust and gas that collapsed under gravity. scientists have speculated that this cloud lasted anywhere from 1 to 10 million years, but new research has pegged that period at 2 million years. An international team of researchers studied a variety of meteorites that had formed just before the planets. One group, called calcium aluminum-rich inclusions are known to have formed early in the solar nebula, and others, called chondrules, formed right at the end - 2 million years later.

Extreme Life in Yellowstone Gives More Hope for Life on Mars.

Researchers from the University of Colorado at Boulder have uncovered a group of bacteria living in an extreme environment in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. The hardy microbes were discovered living inside rocks near geothermal vents, and are regularly subjected to an acidic environment with high levels of metals and silicates and very high temperatures. These microbes can end up as fossils, so scientists can see how they've changed over time, and they can learn additional signs to look for life on Mars.

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