Volume 1 Issue 2 February 2017

Volume 1 Issue 2

Out of the void

The presence of a galactic void exerting a repelling force on our Local Group of galaxies has been difficult to confirm due to the absence of galaxies. Instead, by measuring the peculiar velocities — velocities in excess of the Universe’s Hubble expansion — of galaxies around the Milky Way, it is possible to reveal that galaxies are flowing away from this 'dipole repeller' and towards a previously known concentration of galaxies called the Great Attractor.

See Hoffman et al. 1, 0036 (2017).

Daniel Pomarède, CEA Saclay. Cover design: Alex Wing

Editorial

  • Editorial |

    Exoplanetary science warns us against the use of improper terminology, which increases the risk of new discoveries being misinterpreted by researchers as well as the general public. Both the scientific community and journal editors can help to avoid this significant danger.

Comment

  • Comment |

    As scientists, the terminology we choose influences our thinking as it carries our messages to colleagues and the public. In the face of pressure to turn science into clickbait, maintaining precision in the language we use is critical to dispel misinformation and, more broadly, to enable scientific progress.

    • William B. Moore
    • , A. Lenardic
    • , A. M. Jellinek
    • , C. L. Johnson
    • , C. Goldblatt
    •  & R. D. Lorenz
  • Comment |

    We have found many Earth-sized worlds but we have no way of determining if their surfaces are Earth-like. This makes it impossible to quantitatively compare habitability, and pretending we can risks damaging the field.

    • Elizabeth Tasker
    • , Joshua Tan
    • , Kevin Heng
    • , Stephen Kane
    • , David Spiegel
    • , the ELSI Origins Network Planetary Diversity Workshop
    • , Ramon Brasser
    • , Andrew Casey
    • , Steven Desch
    • , Caroline Dorn
    • , John Hernlund
    • , Christine Houser
    • , Matthieu Laneuville
    • , Marine Lasbleis
    • , Anne-Sophie Libert
    • , Lena Noack
    • , Cayman Unterborn
    •  & June Wicks
  • Mission Control |

    Using a radio telescope with no moving parts, the dark energy speeding up the expansion of the Universe can be probed in unprecedented detail, says Keith Vanderlinde, on behalf of the CHIME collaboration.

    • Keith Vanderlinde

    Insight:

Books & Arts

Research Highlights

News & Views

Research

  • Letter |

    The authors present evidence that the lunar soil contains oxygen ions from Earth that escape our atmosphere and reach the Moon through the Earth’s magnetospheric wind. The lunar surface possibly contains clues about the history of Earth’s atmosphere.

    • Kentaro Terada
    • , Shoichiro Yokota
    • , Yoshifumi Saito
    • , Naritoshi Kitamura
    • , Kazushi Asamura
    •  & Masaki N. Nishino
  • Letter |

    Heck et al. provide the first experimental evidence that the composition of meteorites falling on the Earth changes with time. The distribution of meteorites 470 million years ago is significantly different from today — an effect linked to events happening in the asteroid belt.

    • Philipp R. Heck
    • , Birger Schmitz
    • , William F. Bottke
    • , Surya S. Rout
    • , Noriko T. Kita
    • , Anders Cronholm
    • , Céline Defouilloy
    • , Andrei Dronov
    •  & Fredrik Terfelt
  • Letter |

    The New Horizons spacecraft revealed a large dark reddish area along Pluto’s equatorial region, probably made up by organics. Here the authors show that it could be formed by the very same giant impact that created Pluto’s biggest satellite, Charon.

    • Yasuhito Sekine
    • , Hidenori Genda
    • , Shunichi Kamata
    •  & Taro Funatsu
  • Letter |

    Isotopic analyses of stardust have yet to single out a specific stellar origin for it. A revision of the proton-capture rate of 17O has helped to identify intermediate mass stars (4–8 solar masses) as the source of a large fraction of meteoritic stardust.

    • M. Lugaro
    • , A. I. Karakas
    • , C. G. Bruno
    • , M. Aliotta
    • , L. R. Nittler
    • , D. Bemmerer
    • , A. Best
    • , A. Boeltzig
    • , C. Broggini
    • , A. Caciolli
    • , F. Cavanna
    • , G. F. Ciani
    • , P. Corvisiero
    • , T. Davinson
    • , R. Depalo
    • , A. Di Leva
    • , Z. Elekes
    • , F. Ferraro
    • , A. Formicola
    • , Zs. Fülöp
    • , G. Gervino
    • , A. Guglielmetti
    • , C. Gustavino
    • , Gy. Gyürky
    • , G. Imbriani
    • , M. Junker
    • , R. Menegazzo
    • , V. Mossa
    • , F. R. Pantaleo
    • , D. Piatti
    • , P. Prati
    • , D. A. Scott
    • , O. Straniero
    • , F. Strieder
    • , T. Szücs
    • , M. P. Takács
    •  & D. Trezzi
  • Letter |

    The presence of a large underdensity, the dipole repeller, is predicted based on a study of the velocity field of our Local Group of galaxies. The combined effects of this super-void and the Shapley concentration control the local cosmic flow.

    • Yehuda Hoffman
    • , Daniel Pomarède
    • , R. Brent Tully
    •  & Hélène M. Courtois
  • Letter |

    Our currently accepted model of a hierarchically growing, dark-matter dominated Universe predicts rare isolated groups of dwarf galaxies. The discovery of seven such systems may point to the building blocks of present-day intermediate-mass galaxies.

    • S. Stierwalt
    • , S. E. Liss
    • , K. E. Johnson
    • , D. R. Patton
    • , G. C. Privon
    • , G. Besla
    • , N. Kallivayalil
    •  & M. Putman
  • Article |

    Periodic pulsations of polarized emission and a strong magnetic field were found in a white-dwarf double system. These findings confirm a pulsar-like emission mechanism for the system that has so far been associated only with neutron stars.

    • D. A. H. Buckley
    • , P. J. Meintjes
    • , S. B. Potter
    • , T. R. Marsh
    •  & B. T. Gänsicke
  • Erratum |

    • Reinout J. van Weeren
    • , Felipe Andrade-Santos
    • , William A. Dawson
    • , Nathan Golovich
    • , Dharam V. Lal
    • , Hyesung Kang
    • , Dongsu Ryu
    • , Marcus Brüggen
    • , Georgiana A. Ogrean
    • , William R. Forman
    • , Christine Jones
    • , Vinicius M. Placco
    • , Rafael M. Santucci
    • , David Wittman
    • , M. James Jee
    • , Ralph P. Kraft
    • , David Sobral
    • , Andra Stroe
    •  & Kevin Fogarty