A recently discovered dwarf galaxy in the constellation Lynx may serve well as a proxy for better understanding the developing chemistry of the early universe, according to a research team that includes University of Virginia astronomers.

Their new finding, published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, shows that the oxygen level in the little galaxy is the lowest yet discovered in any star-forming galaxy, likely resembling early nascent galaxies.

In a paper to be published in Science on 22 September, the Pierre Auger Collaboration reports observational evidence demonstrating that cosmic rays with energies a million times greater than that of the protons accelerated in the Large Hadron Collider come from much further away than from our own Galaxy. Ever since the existence of cosmic rays with individual energies of several Joules was established in the 1960s, speculation has raged as to whether such particles are created there or in distant extragalactic objects.

New Haven, Conn. - The most-studied galaxy in the universe -- the Milky Way -- might not be as "typical" as previously thought, according to a new study.

The Milky Way, which is home to Earth and its solar system, is host to several dozen smaller galaxy satellites. These smaller galaxies orbit around the Milky Way and are useful in understanding the Milky Way itself.

In the faint southern constellation of Antlia the careful observer with binoculars will spot a very red star, which varies slightly in brightness from week to week. This very unusual star is called U Antliae and new observations with the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA - http://www.eso.org/public/teles-instr/alma/) are revealing a remarkably thin spherical shell around it.

Cassiopeia A is a famous supernova remnant, the product of a gigantic explosion of a massive star about 350 years ago. Although discovered in radio observations 50 years ago, now we know that its emitted radiation spans from radio through high-energy gamma rays. It is also one of the few remnants for which the birth date and the type of supernova are known. It was a type IIb, the result of a core collapse supernova explosion.

Astrophysicists from Moscow State University have found a new way to estimate the mass of supermassive black holes outside our galaxy, even if these holes are barely detectable. The results of the study were published in the Astronomy and Astrophysics journal.

Star formation: Three scientists at Niels Bohr Institute (NBI), University of Copenhagen, have carried out extensive computer simulations related to star formation. They conclude that the present idealized models are lacking when it comes to describing details in the star formation process. "Hopefully our results can also help shed more light on planet formation", says Michael Küffmeier, astrophysicist and head of the research team.

Astronomers have discovered that the well-studied exoplanet WASP-12b reflects almost no light, making it appear essentially pitch black. This discovery sheds new light on the atmospheric composition of the planet and also refutes previous hypotheses about WASP-12b's atmosphere. The results are also in stark contrast to observations of another similarly sized exoplanet.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - Identical twins are similar to each other in many ways, but they have different experiences, friends, and lifestyles.

This concept is played out on a cosmological scale by galaxies. Two galaxies that appear at first glance to be very similar and effectively identical can have inner regions rotating at very different rates - the galactic analog of twins with different lifestyles.

The accelerating expansion of the Universe may not be real, but could just be an apparent effect, according to new research published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. The new study--by a group at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand--finds the fit of Type Ia supernovae to a model universe with no dark energy to be very slightly better than the fit to the standard dark energy model.