Articles about x-ray

Beam of light

Florida man is world's fastest flasher: Just 53 quintillionths of a sec

Physicists at the University of Central Florida have developed the world's fastest X‑ray pulse, at 53 attoseconds. Blink and you'll really, really miss it. At 53 quintillionths (53 x 10‑18) of a second, the flash is 15 orders of magnitude faster than the blink of an eye. The beam travels less than one-thousandth of the …

Boffins play with the world's most powerful X‑ray gun to shoot molecules

A group of scientists has focused the world’s most powerful X‑ray beam on a molecule to test out the Linac Coherent Light Source at the US Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. The pulse was so intense that within 30 femtoseconds – a millionth of a billionth of a second – more than 50 electrons were …
Katyanna Quach, 31 May 2017
Chandra's wandering black hole

Stripped of its galaxy, this black hole is wandering naked in the cosmos

Boffins analysing old Chandra x-ray telescope data have spotted a rarity indeed: an X-ray source that seems to be a black hole, but without a galaxy to surround it. At an estimated 100,000 times the mass of the sun, the black hole in question – at the edge of lenticular galaxy SDSS J141711.07+522540.8, about 4.5 billion light …
Pluto, visible and X-ray

Pluto's emitting X-rays, and NASA doesn't quite know how

The Chandra space telescope has spotted X-rays emanating from Pluto. What? That's “cold, dead, former planet Pluto with no magnetic field”, to most of us: orbiting between 4.4 billion km and 7.4 billion km from the sun out in the Kuiper belt, with no way to generate heat. That Pluto. Since we don't suppose the former-planet …
Black hole - spaghetti visualisation. Artist's impression.  NASA/JPL-Caltech, CC BY-SA

Supermassive black hole devours star and becomes X-ray flashlight

Astronomers have identified a sleeping black hole that sprung back to life – after trapping a nearby star to be later consumed – due to the curved space-time around it firing X-rays into space, according to research published today in Nature. Black holes have a strong gravitational pull on any nearby objects, and if anything …
Katyanna Quach, 22 Jun 2016

Supernova bubble clocked at 19,000,000 km/h

Astronomers have produced a fetching animation of the inexorable outwards expansion of the remains of the Tycho Type Ia supernova - a white dwarf in a binary star system which went bang in spectacular fashion back in 1572. The explosion was so bright it was visible from Earth during the day, even at a distance of some 10,000 …
Lester Haines, 13 May 2016
Black hole

Mysterious cosmic dustball fires up Milky Way's black hole

The supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy has become a lot more active in the last year, and now the scientists think they've worked out why. The black hole, dubbed Sagittarius A*, has been monitored by space telescopes for the last 15 years. It usually emits a bright X-ray flare – generated about every ten days …
Iain Thomson, 24 Sep 2015

Euro X-ray 'scope snaps Milky Way's 'tumultuous heart'

A new image from the European Space Agency's (ESA) XMM-Newton X-ray 'scope gives a nice view of the wild party at the Milky Way's "tumultuous heart". The XMM-Newton image of the Milky Way's centre The snap spans around one thousand light-years and was compiled from all XMM-Newton probes of the area, "adding up to about one …
Lester Haines, 21 Aug 2015
Press photo Credit: E. Brun

SECRETS of the LOST SCROLLS unlocked by key to HEALTHY BOOBS

Carbonised scrolls from a Roman library destroyed in a volcanic eruption are being read using a cunning X-ray technique more commonly employed in medical screening for breast cancer, boffins have announced. The scrolls in question are the famous Herculaneum library ones. Herculaneum was a Roman resort located on the Bay of …
Lewis Page, 21 Jan 2015
Hubble image with dark matter mass overlay

Dark matter-hunting boffins spot EXCITING signal in X-ray spectrum

Vid Boffins believe they may finally have detected the first sign of dark matter, after picking up an unusual photon emission signal in X-rays coming from space. Scientists from the EPFL lab of particle physics and cosmology (LPPC) and Leiden University are expected to publish their findings next week in Physical Review Letters. …
Team Register, 13 Dec 2014
The Register breaking news

KABOOOM! Space-faring dwarf's galactic pile-up snapped by X-ray boffins

Pics Astronomers have spotted a huge collision between a plucky little dwarf galaxy and a massive spiral rival that goes by the snappy name of NGC 1232. NASA stargazers using the orbiting Chandra X-ray Observatory were alerted to the intergalactic pile-up after spotting a cloud of super-heated gas in the huge spiral galaxy, which …
Jasper Hamill, 15 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Boffins baffled over pulsar with 'split personality'

A pulsar that randomly and without warning dramatically changes its pattern of radio wave and X-ray emissions has surprised a team of astronomers, who wrote that it "challenges all proposed pulsar emission theories". A pulsar with glowing cones of radiation Pulsars are spinning neutron stars the size of a small city, with a …
The Register breaking news

Curiosity rover blasts, grabs and fondles its first Martian rock

Mars rover Curiosity has completed its first contact with the Martian surface, successfully fondling a rock with its robotic arm. Curiosity's robotic arm probes first rock The nuclear truck arrived at the "Jake Matijevic" rock, named after a late NASA engineer, after a short drive and probed the stone with its robotic arm to …

'Over half' of Android devices have unpatched holes

Duo Security is claiming that “over half” of Android devices have unpatched vulnerabilities. The company’s Jon Oberheide says in this blog post that the results come from the first slew of users of the company’s X-Ray Android vulnerability scanner. Promising to announced detailed results on Friday (September 14) at the Rapid7 …
The Register breaking news

Pegasus rocket lofts NuSTAR X-ray telescope into orbit

NASA has confirmed the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) X-Ray telescope has successfully made it into orbit after an airborne launch over the Pacific Ocean. NuSTAR was launched at 9am Pacific Time in a Pegasus rocket slung under a L-1011 “Stargazer” aircraft flying at 39,000 feet above the Kwajalein Atoll in the …
Iain Thomson, 13 Jun 2012
The Register breaking news

Pint-size gizmo shoots X-RAY LASER for first time

It was thought that it would take an atomic bomb to produce enough power to generate an X-ray laser, but a team of boffins have fired one from a table-top box of tricks. X-ray lasers need astonishing amounts of power and huge equipment to create extremely short-lived yet coherent beams with a wavelength in the tens of …
Anna Leach, 8 Jun 2012
NuSTAR deployed

Final countdown for NASA's NuSTAR X-ray black hole telescope

NASA has confirmed that it is good to go with the delayed launch of the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) on June 13, and expects to begin spying out the supermassive black holes at the heart of galaxies within a month. The $170m telescope will create the first accurate census of the "local" black hole population …
Iain Thomson, 30 May 2012
The Register breaking news

NASA detects 'heartbeat' of pint-sized star-sucker

In what is turning out to be one of the best months ever for black-hole fanbois, a team of Dutch, Italian, and US space boffins has detected the "heartbeat" of what appears to be teensiest, weensiest black hole ever discovered. "Just as the heart rate of a mouse is faster than an elephant's, the heartbeat signals from these …
Rik Myslewski, 16 Dec 2011

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