Agriculture
Growing Healthier Tomato Plants
Fast-flying fungal spores
Chicken Eggs as Drug Factories
Amphibians
Toads
Salamanders and Newts
Bullfrogs
Animals
Baboons Listen for Who's Tops
Who's Knocking?
A Spider's Taste for Blood
Behavior
Eating Troubles
The Science Fair Circuit
How Much Babies Know
Birds
Cardinals
Woodpecker
Kiwis
Chemistry and Materials
Pencil Thin
The Incredible Shrunken Kids
Toxic Dirt + Avian Flu = Science Fair Success
Computers
The Shape of the Internet
Supersonic Splash
Two monkeys see a more colorful world
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Meet your mysterious relative
Hall of Dinos
Did Dinosaurs Do Handstands?
E Learning Jamaica
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Earth
Salty, Old and, Perhaps, a Sign of Early Life
Challenging the Forces of Nature
Shrinking Glaciers
Environment
Fishing for Fun Takes Toll
Power of the Wind
Improving the Camel
Finding the Past
A Big Discovery about Little People
The Taming of the Cat
Decoding a Beverage Jar
Fish
Barracudas
Catfish
Cleaning Up Fish Farms
Food and Nutrition
In Search of the Perfect French Fry
Yummy bugs
Recipe for Health
GSAT English Rules
Adjectives and Adverbs
Whoever vs. Whomever
Subject and Verb Agreement
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
GSAT Exam Preparation
The Annual GSAT Scholarships
How are students placed after passing the GSAT exam
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
GSAT Scholarship
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Access denied - Disabled boy aces GSAT
GSAT Mathematics
Prime Time for Cicadas
It's a Math World for Animals
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Human Body
Football Scrapes and Nasty Infections
A Fix for Injured Knees
A Better Flu Shot
Invertebrates
Crustaceans
Daddy Long Legs
Squid
Mammals
Skunks
Sea Lions
Porcupines
Parents
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
Children and Media
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
Physics
Extra Strings for New Sounds
Einstein's Skateboard
Project Music
Plants
Seeds of the Future
Getting the dirt on carbon
A Giant Flower's New Family
Reptiles
Chameleons
Box Turtles
Iguanas
Space and Astronomy
Holes in Martian moon mystery
Pluto, plutoid: What's in a name?
Mercury's magnetic twisters
Technology and Engineering
Machine Copy
Smart Windows
Crime Lab
The Parts of Speech
Countable and Uncountable Nouns
What is a Verb?
What is a Noun
Transportation
Where rivers run uphill
Seen on the Science Fair Scene
Tinkering With the Basic Bike
Weather
Science loses out when ice caps melt
Arctic Melt
Warmest Year on Record
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Super Star Cluster in the Neighborhood

Imagine cramming hundreds of thousands of bright, young stars into a space no bigger than our solar system. Talk about a traffic jam! Astronomers have observed such "super" star clusters, but only in galaxies far, far away—until now. It turns out there's a massive, super-dense star cluster right in our own galaxy, the Milky Way. It was spotted by a team of European astronomers using several telescopes at the European Southern Observatory's La Silla site in Chile. Just 10,000 light-years from Earth (a mere jog across town in space terms), the cluster measures 6 light-years across. Its weight, the astronomers estimate, is at least as heavy as 100,000 suns. The cluster's name is Westerlund 1. The fact that the cluster exists isn't a total surprise. Since 1961, astronomers have known that some sort of grouping of young stars lies in the constellation Ara. Because the cluster hides behind a large cloud of gas and dust, though, they had no idea how packed with stars it is. Sensitive detectors on telescopes at La Silla helped the researchers identify more than 200 massive stars in Westerlund 1. Each of these stars, they found, weighs 30 to 40 times as much as the sun. Some of the stars are a million times brighter. A few are so big that they would reach all the way to Saturn if you could put them where our sun is. The telescopes in Chile were not sensitive enough to detect smaller stars in the cluster, but scientists are sure they must be there. There are probably at least a half-million more stars in Westerlund 1, they say. The astronomers estimate that the cluster is just 5 million years old. That's young in star years. The discovery could help illuminate what the universe was like in its early days. Back then, studies suggest, star formation tended to happen within clusters. Collisions among stars in the super cluster could also lead to the formation of a medium-sized black hole. Right here in our own backyard.—E. Sohn

Super Star Cluster in the Neighborhood
Super Star Cluster in the Neighborhood








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