Maat Mons, Venus' highest volcano, one of several that may still be active in present day

Active Volcanoes May Still Exist on Venus

Scientists baked volcanic minerals in a box furnace to model how quickly lava ages on the planet’s harsh surface

The Quadrantids meteor shower, though fleeting, is famous for its especially bright, colorful "fireballs"

How to Catch the Quadrantids, the First Major Meteor Shower of the 2020s

This cosmic light show will peak in the predawn hours of January 4

The star Betelgeuse, as seen by the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array.

A Giant Star Is Dimming, Which Could Be a Sign It Is About to Explode

Most astronomers, however, say it's unlikely that the star Betelgeuse will go supernova anytime soon

New Research

NASA's Sun-Orbiting Probe Reveals New Secrets of Our Host Star

The first findings from the Parker Solar Probe change what we know about the workings of our nearest star

An amateur astronomer in India doggedly searched for the remnants of the country's Vikram lander after it crashed into the lunar south pole.

Amateur Astronomer Locates India's Moon Lander Crash Site

After blipping out of contact in September, India’s Vikram lander has now been found strewn across the lunar surface

Jupiter and its Great Red Spot as seen by the Hubble Telescope on June 27, 2019.

New Research

Jupiter's Great Red Spot May Not Be Dying Out Just Yet

Earlier this year, the spot appeared to be losing big chunks, but new research suggests it was gobbling up a smaller storm

The central region of our Milky Way is a bustling galactic downtown with a supermassive black hole at its hub.

Chandra Telescope Observes Two Decades of Turning Theory Into Reality

A new book, 'Light From the Void,' showcases the telescope’s images of nebulas, supernovae, supermassive black holes and more

Thanks to the ubiquity of electric light, less and less of the planet falls genuinely into darkness any more.

How Cities and Lights Drive the Evolution of Life

Urbanization and the spread of artificial light are transforming all of earth's species, bringing about a host of unintended consequences

New Research

First Global Map of Saturn's Moon Titan Reveals Secrets of Earth's 'Deranged' Twin

The map showcases the planet's flat plains, sand dunes, hilly terrain and lakes full of liquid methane

An artist's concept showing a "naked-eye" view of a GRB up close. Observations suggest that material is shot outward in a two-component jet (white and green beams). Credit: NASA/Swift/Mary Pat Hrybyk-Keith and John Jones

Astronomers Detect Record-Breaking Gamma Ray Bursts From Colossal Explosion in Space

A powerful outburst in a distant galaxy produced photons with high enough energies to be detected by ground-based telescopes for the first time

Left to right, top to bottom: Sheperd Doeleman, Michael Johnson, Sandra Bustamante, Jonathan Weintroub, James Moran, Aleks Popstefanija, Daniel Palumbo; Feryal Ozel, Joseph Farah, Neil Erickson, Peter Galison, Katie Bouman, Dominic Pesce, Garrett K. Keating; Nimesh Patel, Alexander Raymond, Kazinori Akiyama, Vernon Fath, Mark Gurwell, Gopal Narayanan, Peter Schloerb

American Ingenuity Awards

Meet the Global Team That Captured the First Image of a Black Hole

Never before had scientists seen the phenomenon until they rallied colleagues around the world to view a galaxy far, far away

The thread-like structures in this image from the Japanese satellite Hinode are spicules, giant plumes of gas that transfer energy through the sun’s various regions.

New Research

Millions of Plasma 'Spicules' Could Explain the Extreme Heat of the Sun's Atmosphere

New observations suggest interactions between opposite magnetic fields cause millions of super hot tendrils to erupt from the surface of the sun

Trending Today

NASA Names Most Distant Object Ever Explored 'Arrokoth,' the Powhatan Word for Sky

The space rock's initial nickname, Ultima Thule, drew criticism for its ties to Nazi ideology

The recently opened Apollo moon sample.

Trending Today

NASA Opens Pristine Tube of Moon Dust From the Apollo Missions

Studying the lunar material will help scientists understand the best way to analyze new samples from future missions to the moon

A composite image of Mercury's 2016 transit.

How to Watch Mercury’s Rare Transit Across the Sun

Step one: Protect your eyes

After two eclipse expeditions confirmed Einstein's theory of general relativity, the scientist became an international celebrity.

One Hundred Years Ago, Einstein's Theory of General Relativity Baffled the Press and the Public

Few people claimed to fully understand it, but the esoteric theory still managed to spark the public's imagination

It’s Death By A Million Cuts on This Slasher Planet!

Trending Today

NASA Celebrates Halloween With These Interstellar Horror Posters

The artwork highlights the weird world of exoplanets where it rains glass and planets circle zombie stars

The Wright brothers' 1903 flight made history, regardless of other claims about earlier flights.

Ask Smithsonian

Was Jakob Brodbeck First in Flight? And More Questions From Our Readers

You’ve got questions, we’ve got experts

An artists interpretation of the Yeti Galaxy.

New Research

Behold This 'Cosmic Yeti,' a Monster Galaxy From the Beginning of Time

Astronomers recently spotted 12.5 billion-year-old light from the giant galaxy, which helps explains the evolution of the early universe

Artist's impression of gas flow in a protoplanetary disk.

New Research

To Find Baby Planets, Researchers Chase Waterfalls of Gas

Analysis of data from the ALMA telescope shows gas flows from the surface to middle of protoplanetary discs as new planets form