UA Science

Image courtesy of NASA

NICER Launched and Installed on ISS

Update2: NICER is installed! (see this link). "The installation of NICER clears the way for nearly a month of calibrations before it can start regular science observations." "NICER’s ground team has penciled in July 13 as the first day of the instrument’s 18-month science mission."

Update: NICER was launched on SpaceX Dragon June 3. Dragon successfully docked with ISS the morning of June 5. See this link for launch information. You can read about the successful ISS rendezvous HERE.

The Neutron-star Interior Composition ExploreR (NICER) is NASA's most recent X-ray telescope that will be launched this weekend, and placed on the International Space Station. The primary goal of NICER is to observe spinning neutron stars, also known as pulsars, and detect minute effects in their lightcurves that are described by Einstein's theory of General Relativity....

Image by Jon Morse (University of Colorado)

A Sharp Look at the Wind from a Dying Star

Eta Carinae is perhaps the most interesting star in the Milky Way. It is very unstable and has ejected lots of material into space in the last few hundred years. Understanding how Eta Carinae drives its powerful wind can provide clues to the late evolutionary stages of very massive stars. To test whether our ideas of its unique stellar wind are correct, Steward astronomers used the 6.5 meter Clay Telescope...

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