Gemini News Archive


“Celestial Pollution” from meteors like this weekend’s Perseid Meteor Shower sprinkle sodium high up in our atmosphere and give astronomers what they need to see the universe in much greater detail.

Poised for Discovery: Gemini’s Much-anticipated Infrared Instrument Goes On-sky

Gemini Observatory’s latest instrument, a powerful infrared camera and spectrograph called FLAMINGOS-2 at Gemini South, reveals its potential in a series of striking on-sky commissioning images released today.

Gamma-Ray Burst Illuminates Galaxy in Dark Ages

Gemini observatory’s rapid-response allows for the detailed study of light from one of the most distant cases of a gamma-ray burst (GRB 130606A) illuminating a galaxy ever observed.

Revolutionary Instrument Delivers a Sharper Universe to Astronomers

A unique new instrument, called GeMS, at Gemini South in Chile takes the removal of atmospheric distortions (using adaptive optics technology) to a new level. Today’s release of seven ultrasharp, large-field images from the instrument’s first science observations demonstrate its remarkable discovery potential.

Gas-Giant Exoplanets Cling Close to Their Parent Stars

Gemini Observatory’s Planet-Finding Campaign finds that, around many types of stars, distant gas-giant planets are rare and prefer to cling close to their parent stars. The impact on theories of planetary formation could be significant.

Gemini Observatory Captures Comet ISON Hurtling Toward Uncertain Destiny with the Sun

A new series of images from Gemini Observatory shows Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) racing toward an uncomfortably close rendezvous with the Sun. In late November the comet could present a stunning sight in the twilight sky and remain easily visible into early December of this year.

Gemini Arrives Early to the Scene of “Shockingly Bright” Gamma-ray Burst

Captured within 90 minutes of detection by both Fermi’s Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) and NASA’s Swift satellite, Gemini’s spectrum of the GRB 130427A surrendered a critical parameter: its distance, using Gemini’s rapid response Target of Opportunity protocols.

Now Quarterly, April Issue of GeminiFocus Available

The Gemini Observatory newsletter, GeminiFocus, is now quarterly and available as both a downloadable PDF and in an on-line e-reader format compatible with desktop browsers, tablets, e-readers, and smart phones.

Searching for the True Colors of M87's Globular Clusters

Juan Carlos Forte (Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, Argentina) and colleagues observed over 500 globular clusters of the giant elliptical galaxy M87 (also known as NGC 4486) and conclude that their chemical abundance distribution is genuinely bimodal

The Journey Continues…

Now in its ninth year, JttU wraps up its annual “Journey Week” on March 15th. During this week Gemini staff joined over 50 other scientists, researchers, and educators in 350 classrooms and almost 8000 students across East Hawai‘i.


A pair of newly discovered stars is the third-closest star system to the Sun, according to a paper that will be published in Astrophysical Journal Letters. The duo is the closest star system discovered since 1916.

Surprising Results From the Earliest Near-Infrared Spectroscopy of a Type Ia Supernova

Gemini Near-Infrared Spectrograph (GNIRS) observations lead to surprising results on the nature of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). Time-series near-infrared spectra of SN 2011fe hint that more SNe Ia harbor unprocessed carbon than previously believed, and what we thought was the main driver of the luminosity-decline rate Phillips relation may not be correct.

Australian Student “Thinks Big” for Imaging Contest

On February 12, 2013 Australian High School Senior Ryan Soares had stars in his eyes during a ceremony celebrating his winning selection for the 2012 Australian Gemini Schools Imaging contest.

Intermediate Redshift Clusters Shed Light on Galaxy Evolution

Gemini astronomers Inger Jørgensen and Kristin Chiboucas have shed new on galaxy evolution: the mass to light ratios of the galaxies indicate that low-mass galaxies have experienced more recent star formation than high-mass galaxies.


A new image released today reveals how Gemini Observatory's most advanced adaptive optics (AO) system will help astronomers study the universe with an unprecedented level of clarity and detail by removing distortions due to the Earth’s atmosphere

Gemini Observatory Announces 2013 Board of Directors

The Gemini Observatory Board of Directors opens 2013 with new leadership and a number of membership changes. The changes reflect regular term expirations as well as the departure of the United Kingdom from the partnership and subsequent adjustments to partner shares.

"All-Clear" Asteroid Will Miss Earth in 2040

Potential asteroid collision in 2040 is a non-threat based on new Gemini Observatory data.

Looking Ahead: Gemini’s Partnership Beyond 2015

A recent milestone for the Gemini Observatory sees the observatory moving forward until the end of this decade with its strong international partnership intact.

“Green-bean Galaxies” and the Demise of Quasars

A team of astronomers has discovered a spectacular and very rare phenomenon in galaxies. It is interpreted as a light echo from an earlier, very active, quasar phase that has since shut down. Thus they appear green in some datasets giving them the colorful moniker “green-bean galaxies.”

Probing the Atmosphere of an Extrasolar Planet with Gemini South

A group of British astronomers, led by Neale P. Gibson of the University of Oxford, used the Gemini Multi-Object Spectrograph (GMOS) to probe the atmosphere of a transiting extrasolar planet identified as WASP-29b.