We all knew it had to happen eventually, but few expected it this early: Skynet has arrived.Only, instead of launching nukes, enslaving mankind, and more or less being a total pain, this version has a much more innocent purpose - to use the power of the crowd to keep an eye on space.
Imagine if Earth was being blasted by radiation so strong that it was disappearing at a rate of 5 million tonnes per second. Sounds pretty disastrous, right? Well spare a thought for poor old CoRoT-2b, whose companion star is bombarding it with x-rays a hundred thousand times more powerful than rays from our Sun, Science Daily reports.
It took nearly a year of high-powered number crunching on various supercomputers, but researchers from the University of California Santa Cruz campus and the Institute for Theoretical Physics in Zurich, Switzerland have finally produced a computer simulation of a galaxy that looks much like our own. That may not sound so huge at face value, but it actually is the first high-resolution simulation of its kind that has turned out a galaxy similar to the Milky Way, and it has rescued the prevailing "cold dark matter" cosmological model of how our disc galaxy formed from a good deal of doubt.
Using NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer telescope, astronomers have finally spotted a collection of ultra-cool brown dwarfs they have been hunting for more than a decade. These tepid almost-star orbs are nearly impossible to see with a normal telescope, but WISE's infrared vision was able to pick them out.