Astro Blog articles for galaxies

HARMONI+Adaptive Optics: a trailblazing combination!

Posted: 20 Dec 2018

HARMONI, the first-light spectrograph for the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) has passed a major milestone today in successfully completing the Preliminary Design Review process (PDR).

Space Warps is back: Help Us Weigh Galaxies!

Posted: 04 May 2018

The Space Warps team and Zooniverse are excited to have joined forces with Science Friday to launch our most recent hunt for rare and elusive gravitational lenses. This time we are hunting for gravitational lenses in about 300,000 images of galaxies selected from the Hyper Suprime-Cam imaging survey on the Japanese 8.2m Subaru Telescope, Mauna Kea.

Magnetic field traces gas and dust swirling around supermassive black hole

Posted: 21 Feb 2018

This blog post is based on a press release issued today by the Royal Astronomical Society.

An exciting new study led by Professor Pat Roche of the Department of Physics and Hertford College (University of Oxford), has produced the highest resolution map of magnetic field lines in gas and dust swirling around the supermassive black hole at th

A new era of astronomy: Construction of the 39m Extremely Large Telescope dome & main structure officially starts

Posted: 30 May 2017

On Friday 26th May 2017, a major milestone in construction of the world’s largest visible and infrared telescope, the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), was reached.

BOOM! The European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) project starts with a blast!

Posted: 07 Jul 2014

On Thursday 19th June 2014 at ~18:45 BST, an explosion high in the Atacama desert in Northern Chile marked the beginning of construction of what will be the largest optical & infrared telescope in the World. The European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT), built by the European Southern Observatory (ESO), will be sited at a high and dry peak on Cerro Armazones, some 20 km away from ESO's Paranal Observatory.

The Milky Way and Andromeda galaxy are on a collision course!

Posted: 21 Jun 2012

Forget global warming baking the Earth - how about something even bigger, like the destruction of the entire Milky Way galaxy? Celia Escamilla Rivera looks at new evidence that predicts a cataclysmic fate for our own galaxy.

Beacons or Fireworks?

Posted: 30 Mar 2012

In the local, old Universe we only see intense bursts of star formation when galaxies collide - but the young Universe was a very different place, it seems. Georgios Magdis is using the Herschel and VLA telescopes to measure the amount of gas in massive galaxies 1-4 billion years after the Big Bang, and finding that mergers weren't so important back then. Some galaxies had so much gas they could sustain long periods of star formation, without the need for a merger to compress the gas at all - they look more like beacons than fireworks. Phil Marshall caught up with Georgios and asked him a few questions about his work.

VISTA's superb deep infrared image of Hubble's COSMOS field

Posted: 29 Mar 2012

A new observation carried out with the VISTA telescope, built here in Oxfordshire and now operating in Chile, has given us the deepest wide-field infrared image of the Universe that will be available from the ground for some years to come... Gavin Dalton introduces the remarkable first-year Ultra-VISTA data.

Stargazing Oxford: Thinking Big

Posted: 17 Jan 2012

Stargazing Oxford is more than just a local astronomy fair - it will represent what we at Oxford Astrophysics are all about. Think big: come and explore the Universe from the Denys Wilkinson Building!

What Can You See in the Night Sky This Week?

Posted: 01 Dec 2011

Andromeda - the Milky Way’s twin galaxy - is the closest spiral galaxy to us. However, it’s still a long way away! If the Milky Way was the size of a 2p coin, Andromeda would be the size of another 2p coin just over half a metre away. And that’s our nearest neighbour! Unsurprisingly, the Andromeda galaxy is located in the constellation of Andromeda and can be seen from dusk till about 2:30am every night this week, writes Jas Virdee.

Tales from the Telescope: ALMA

Posted: 01 Dec 2011

Pat Roche reports from his visit to the ALMA site in Chile - and asks Estelle Bayet to explain why it is such an exciting new observatory.