Gemini News Archive

Gemini News Archive

  • Supermassive Black Hole is Ahead of its Time

    Observations reveal the mass of earliest known supermassive black hole which radiates from an era in the universe only 690 million years after the Big Bang. Researchers, using unique spectroscopic data from Gemini Near-Infrared Spectrograph (GNIRS) on Gemini North determined its mass at a whopping 800 million times the mass of our Sun.

    Supermassive Black Hole is Ahead of its Time
  • Gemini Observations Show Distant Black Hole Pair is “Photobombing” Culprit

    Gemini observations played a critical role in research by scientists at the University of Washington in their quest to identify an object which appears to be “photobombing” the Andromeda Galaxy. The researchers determined that rather than being a binary star system within the neighboring Andromeda Galaxy, as previously thought, the object is really a distant galaxy containing a supermassive black hole binary – a pair of black holes orbiting each other very closely within the galaxy’s core.

    Gemini Observations Show Distant Black Hole Pair is “Photobombing” Culprit
  • First Known Interstellar Visitor is an “Oddball”

    After the object was discovered by Pan-STARRS1 on Haleakala, both Gemini telescopes observed ‘Oumuamua for three nights as it quickly dimmed from view. Researchers found that despite its interstellar origin, the object is similar in composition to some objects in our Solar System but its shape is unlike anything found around our Sun.

    First Known Interstellar Visitor is an “Oddball”
  • Gemini Observatory Confirms Spiral Nature of Extremely Distant Lensed Galaxy

    Gemini North’s NIFS has confirmed the spiral nature of the most distant known spiral galaxy (A1689B11) by far through gravitational lensing.

    Gemini Observatory Confirms Spiral Nature of Extremely Distant Lensed Galaxy
  • Astronomers Feast on First Light From Gravitational Wave Event

    Gemini Observatory "pulled all of the stops" to bring a gravitational wave source into focus and capture early optical and infrared light from the merger of two neutron stars.

    Astronomers Feast on First Light From Gravitational Wave Event
  • The Galactic Center’s Mysterious Quintuplet Stars Unmasked

    Gemini astronomer Tom Geballe describes his recent infrared spectroscopic observations of a mysterious quintuplet of stars. Each of these stars is embedded in its own cocoon of dust in a cluster of massive stars near the center of the Milky Way.

    The Galactic Center’s Mysterious Quintuplet Stars Unmasked
  • Rocky Planet Engulfment Explains Stellar Odd Couple

    Astronomers using the Gemini Observatory and the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope have discovered remarkable differences in the abundance of heavier elements and the Lithium content in a binary star pair.

    Rocky Planet Engulfment Explains Stellar Odd Couple
  • The Little Star That Survived a Supernova

    GRACES observes a fast-moving object that is likely a white dwarf star expelled from a supernova explosion and sent hurtling through our galactic neighborhood.

    The Little Star That Survived a Supernova
  • Gemini Confirms a New Class of Variable Stars

    Gemini confirms a new class of variable stars called Blue Large-Amplitude Pulsators. They are significantly bluer than main sequence stars of the same luminosity demonstrating that they are relatively hot.

    Gemini Confirms a New Class of Variable Stars
  • Gemini Confirms Super-distant, Superluminous Supernova

    Spectroscopy using the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrograph on the Gemini South telescope in Chile verifies the extreme distance of one of the most distant superluminous supernovae ever studied.

    Gemini spectra overlaid on image of supernova with title text, Gemini Confirms Super-distant, Superluminous Supernova"
  • Striking Gemini Images Point Juno Spacecraft Toward Discovery

    Detailed Gemini Observatory images peel back Jupiter’s atmospheric layers to support the NASA/JPL Juno spacecraft in its quest to understand the giant planet’s atmosphere.

    Two images of Jupiter captured by the Gemini Observatory in support of the Juno mission.
  • Korean Astronomers Dissect a Fragmented Asteroid

    A team of Korean astronomers uses imaging from the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrograph (GMOS) on Gemini North to characterize the rotation of active asteroid P/2010 A2’s largest fragment. The observations show that this faint and tiny (about the size of an American football field) asteroid, which underwent a mass ejection episode, is slowly rotating, indicative of an impact fragmentation rather a rotational breakup.

    Korean Astronomers Dissect a Fragmented Asteroid
  • A Partly-cloudy Exoplanet

    The first exoplanet discovered using the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) is a young, cool object between 2–10 Jupiter masses. Research hints that the formation of this exoplanet is likely due to the collapse of icy disk materials followed by the accretion of a thick gas atmosphere.

    A Partly-cloudy Exoplanet
  • Gemini Observatory Astronomer Meg Schwamb to be Awarded Sagan Medal

    Gemini Observatory astronomer Meg Schwamb is this year’s recipient of the Carl Sagan Medal for Excellence in Public Communication in Planetary Science. Schwamb is being honored for the creation and development of new tools and venues to facilitate planetary science communication.

    Gemini Observatory Astronomer Meg Schwamb to be Awarded Sagan Medal
  • Dr. Laura Ferrarese Appointed Interim Director of Gemini Observatory

    On July 1, 2017, Dr. Laura Ferrarese begins a one-year term as Interim Director of the Gemini Observatory.

    Dr. Laura Ferrarese Appointed Interim Director of Gemini Observatory
  • Gemini Tracks Distant Star Cluster with Adaptive Optics

    Researchers combine images from Gemini South’s wide-field adaptive optics system (GeMS/GSAOI) with data from the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) to determine the proper motion of a distant cluster of stars.

    Gemini Tracks Distant Star Cluster with Adaptive Optics
  • OCTOCAM Looks Toward a New Era of Discovery

    Gemini Observatory announces the development of a major new facility-class broadband optical and near-infrared imager and spectrograph named OCTOCAM.

    OCTOCAM Looks Toward a New Era of Discovery
  • Planetoid Pairs Reveal a Kinder, Gentler Neptune

    The Gemini/CFHT observations help address ongoing questions and debates among scientists about Neptune’s migration from its primordial formation orbital location to its current locale.

    Planetoid Pairs Reveal a Kinder, Gentler Neptune
  • β Pictoris b: An Exoplanet With the Atmosphere of a Brown Dwarf

    Using the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI), a team of astronomers led by J. Chilcote (University of Toronto) found that the low mass stellar companion β Pictoris b is about 13 times more massive than Jupiter with a surface temperature of about 1720 K.

    β Pictoris b: An Exoplanet With the Atmosphere of a Brown Dwarf
  • First evidence of rocky planet formation in Tatooine system

    Using the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrograph (GMOS) on Gemini South, a team led by Jay Farihi (University College London) found, for the first time, a dust and debris disk surrounding a binary star with a white dwarf as a substellar companion. To date, almost all of the known planetary systems which include a white dwarf are single stars.

    First evidence of rocky planet formation in Tatooine system