Astrophysics

The infant universeAn all-sky picture of the infant universe revealing 13.77 billion-year-old temperature fluctuations (shown as color differences) that correspond to the seeds that grew to become the galaxies. (Credit: NASA/WMAP Science Team)

Astrophysics is a branch of astronomy that explores the physical properties of the cosmos and its composition. Astrophysicists study a broad range of topics, from the tiniest particles of matter and the forces that join them together to the grandest of celestial structures. In essence, astrophysics extends the workings of physics and chemistry that we experience directly here on Earth into the vastness of space. It is both an observational and theoretical science. To probe the universe's past, present and future, astrophysicists have built some of the most complex and precise machines in the world, including terrestrial and space-based telescopes tuned to various wavelengths. The continued seeking of new discoveries is constantly pushing the limits of telescope and model-building technology. 

Spotlight Live: Dark Energy – On the Brink of Discovery?

Aug 08, 2013

On August 22, three leading members of the new dark energy collaboration answered your questions about the dark energy and the expansion of the universe.

Revealing Dark Energy's Hold on the Universe

Aug 08, 2013
Artist's conception of dark energy, gravity

A new collaboration aims to learn how dark energy is driving the accelerated expansion of the universe.

The Brain or the Universe – Where Does Math Come From?

Aug 07, 2013

What are the origins of math? Is math an inherent part of our reality, or merely something the brain uses to cope with, and explain, our environment? Four scientists discuss (and debate) the merits of both viewpoints.

Spotlight Live: The Brain or the Universe – Where Does Math Come From?

Aug 02, 2013

The Brain or the Universe – Where Does Math Come From? On August 7, 2013, three leading scientists - two neuroscientists and one astrophysicist -– answered your questions about this debate during a live Google Hangout.

A New Baby Picture of the Universe

Jul 31, 2013
Cosmic Microwave Background

On Wednesday July 31, three leading Planck scientists answered your questions about the new measurements of the cosmic microwave background.

Spotlight Live: A New Baby Picture of the Universe

Jul 23, 2013
Cosmic Microwave Background

On Wednesday July 31, three leading Planck scientists answered your questions about the new measurements of the cosmic microwave background.

The Inflating Universe (Sidebar)

Jul 18, 2013

One of the major tenants of the Big Bang model of how the universe began is an idea called inflation. 

Spotlight Live: TESS & the Search for Exoplanets

May 01, 2013
Illustration of the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite

Following a three-year competition, NASA has selected the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) project at MIT for a planned launch in 2017. 

Spotlight Live: Starbursts in the Early Universe

Mar 29, 2013

The milky way today may fire up one new star every year, but billions of years ago,some galaxies were producing new stars at a rate of 1,000 per year. 

Spotlight Roundtable: Witnessing Starbursts in Young Galaxies

Mar 13, 2013
Artist impression of starburst source

John Carlstrom, Dan Marrone and Joaquin Vieira discuss how the world’s most powerful radio telescope revealed that the most vigorous bursts of star birth in the cosmos took place much earlier than previously thought.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Astrophysics