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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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ScienceShot: Neutron Star Breaks Mass Record
27 October 2010 1:42 pm
A neutron star located 4000 light-years away has broken a record: It's nearly twice the mass of the sun and about 20% more massive than any neutron star measured before. Such stars form when massive stars collapse in supernovas, leaving behind a dense, neutron-rich core. The record breaker—named J1614-2230—is a type of neutron star called a millisecond pulsar; it spins at a dizzying rate of more than 300 revolutions per second and beams radio pulses in the direction of Earth every few milliseconds. Researchers were able to gauge the mass of the star by measuring the slowing speed of those pulses as they passed through the gravitational field of its companion star—an effect predicted by Einstein's theory of relativity. The measurement, reported online today in Nature, deals a death blow to several proposed models for the kind of matter that makes up a neutron star: exotic particles like hyperon, kaon condensates, and free quarks are out. The composition of a neutron star's dense core remains a mystery.
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