the latest news from the maunakea observatories

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July 27, 2021
A collapsing star that is producing two short gamma-ray jets

Gemini North Identifies the Surprising Cause of a “Fizzled” Gamma-Ray Burst

Astronomers using the Event Horizon Telescope (of which two Maunakea observatories are a part) have zoomed into Astronomers have discovered the shortest-ever gamma-ray burst (GRB) caused by the implosion of a massive star. Using the Gemini North telescope on Maunakea, astronomers identified the cause of this 0.6-second flurry of gamma rays as a supernova explosion in a distant galaxy. GRBs […]
July 21, 2021
SMA Centaurus A

Zooming into the Heart of Centaurus A

Astronomers using the Event Horizon Telescope (of which two Maunakea observatories are a part) have zoomed into the heart of Centaurus A for the first time — at the center of which lies a black hole with the mass of 55 million suns. Read more, in the Submillimeter Array press release.
June 16, 2021

We are normal

“We are normal!” - After thirty years of observational work, largely from Maunakea, astronomers reveal that the gas giant planets in many other solar systems lie at about the same distance from their stars as Jupiter does in our own solar system.
May 5, 2021
A fireball in Maunakea night sky

Night and Day, a Live Stream of the Sky from Subaru Telescope

Subaru telescope now live streams a section of the eastern sky from Maunakea via the YouTube channel of Asahi Space Club. This is in collaboration with the Asahi-Shimbun, one of the most popular newspapers in Japan. The camera streams its images both night and day; at night, it’s a good place to watch for meteors and other celestial events. Read […]
April 7, 2021
Comet

Subaru Telescope Observes a Comet Nucleus Covered in “Talcum Powder”

Astronomers using the Subaru Telescope on Maunakea have measured the characteristics of mid-infrared light from an old comet nucleus. The comet, originally detected by the Pan-STARRS survey telescope on Haleakalā, passed quite close to the Earth and the team managed to observe it just a day before its closest approach. Besides measuring the size of the nucleus (about half a […]
March 29, 2021
A view of the M87 supermassive black hole in polarized light

New light on Pōwehi: Magnetic Fields at the Edge of M87’s Black Hole

Two Maunakea telescopes, the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT), and the Submillimeter Array (SMA), have once again combined efforts with the global “Event Horizon Telescope” network to produce a view of Pōwehi, the Black Hole at the Center of the galaxy M87. The new results show the black hole in new light – specifically, polarized light. This enables astronomers, for […]
March 9, 2021

A Glimpse at the Infant Universe

Two Maunakea Observatories have been used to reveal the most distant – and therefore the youngest – known radio beacon in the early Universe. Seen as it was 780 million years after the big bang, the object – a quasar known as P172+18 – was originally discovered in images from the Pan-STARRS telescope on Haleakalā, Maui. Detailed study with the […]
March 1, 2021

Farfarout is Indeed Far, Far Out

Thanks to observations with the Subaru and Gemini North telescopes both on Hawaii’s Maunakea, astronomers have confirmed that a faint object discovered in 2018 and nicknamed “Farfarout” is indeed the most distant object yet found in our Solar System. Farfarout was first spotted in January 2018 by the Subaru Telescope and the discoverers could tell it was very far away, […]
February 10, 2021

CFHT Stares at a Young Rebel: the AU Mic Planetary System

An international team of astronomers used the capabilities of SPIRou on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope on Maunakea to measure the mass and density of a Neptune-like planet orbiting very close to the newborn, and highly active star AU Microscopii. Their analysis also shows that this warm planet orbits in the equatorial plane of the host star. This hints that the process […]