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Give that telescope a blanket

May
07

One of the most important tasks involved with having telescopes in space is keeping them at the correct and constant temperature. It's not just because telescopes like Chandra like to be comfortable – it's crucial in making the instruments perform as they should and return accurate science.

Chandra telescope
Interactive Chandra (flash)

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Going Deep with Chandra

Apr
28

One of the most impressive accomplishments of the Chandra mission has been the improved understanding of the distant X-ray Universe. Chandra has accomplished this through deep X-ray surveys that generally involve pointing Chandra at a particular region of the sky that is not known to have any bright nearby objects and letting the camera collect X-ray light for an extended period of time.

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Chandra Does Its Part For The Earth

Apr
22

When we talk about what Chandra observes, we're usually discussing things like black holes or galaxies or stars. But Chandra is a pretty amazing telescope and it can study many things in the Universe – including the Earth.

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Where does the "X" in "X-ray" come from?

Apr
09

Here's a piece of high-energy astrophysics trivia (you never know when you might need to know these things). Where does the "X" in "X-ray" come from?

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The Zen of Astrophysics

Apr
09

Speaking in broad generalities, there are two main classes of physicist: those who generate new hypotheses and those who generate new data. The former are called "theorists" and the latter, in most of physics, are called "experimentalists." In astrophysics, we're called "observers" because we can't do experiments in the traditional sense. We have no knobs to turn, no switches to flip; we can't turn the dial to a maximally spinning black hole just to see what happens (oh, what fun that would be!).

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Live from LA

Mar
31

This week, the High Energy Astrophysics Division (HEAD) meeting is taking place at the Omni Hotel in downtown Los Angeles, California. What exactly is HEAD?

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Having A Light Go On: A New Way To Study Supernovas

Mar
26

Dr. Carles Badenes is a Chandra postdoctoral fellow at Princeton, having spent the previous few years at Rutgers University. His main research focus is on supernova explosions and supernova remnants, particularly the class known as Type Ia.
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Single Spacecraft Seeking Friends

Mar
21

The Chandra X-ray Observatory is now in its ninth year in orbit around the Earth, and things are sometimes lonely out there. So we've been helping Chandra to use the web to reach out to others who like to network online. Here are a few ways to get in touch with Chandra.

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On the Dark Side (Part II)

Mar
17

Just as astronomers were getting used to the idea of not knowing what dark matter is, they got a completely different surprise at the end of the 20th century. Instead of slowing down after the Big Bang, the expansion of the Universe was found to be accelerating. Astronomers quickly did what they always do when they come up with something mysterious: they gave it a name. Now, we call whatever it is pushing the Universe apart "dark energy", but the truth is no one knows what it is.

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