astrophysics

UC Davis Astronomers Help Uncover the Farthest Star Ever Seen

April 02, 2018

Through a lucky quirk of nature, astronomers have used the Hubble Space Telescope to view a single star halfway across the universe. Nine billion light years from Earth, the giant blue-white star, nicknamed “Icarus” by the team, is by far the most distant individual star ever seen. Marusa Bradac, a physics professor and astronomer at UC Davis and graduate student Austin Hoag are part of the team describing Icarus and another distant, magnified star in two papers published April 2 in the journal Nature Astronomy.

Doing Without Dark Energy Becky Oskin December 13, 2017
Mathematicians Blake Temple and Zeke Vogler at the University of California, Davis, and Joel Smoller at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, worked out solutions to General Relativity without invoking dark energy. They argue that the equations show that the Friedmann space-time is actually unstable: Any perturbation — for example if the density of matter is a bit lower than average — pushes it over into an accelerating universe.

UC Davis Helps Spot Colliding Neutron Stars, An Astronomical Breakthrough

October 16, 2017
For the first time, astronomers have observed a celestial event through both conventional telescopes and gravitational waves. Assistant Professor Stefano Valenti helped detect the collision of two neutron stars and confirm these cataclysmic events are the source of gold, platinum and other heavy elements.

Astronomers See Faintest, Furthest Galaxy

May 19, 2016
A team of scientists led by two UC Davis physicists has detected and confirmed the faintest early-universe galaxy yet. This new object, seen as it was about 13 billion years ago, could help astronomers understand the “reionization epoch” when the first stars became visible.