This Hubble Space Telescope view of the core of one of the nearest globular star clusters, called NGC 6397, resembles a treasure chest of glittering jewels. The cluster is located 8,200 light-years away in the constellation Ara. Here, the stars are jam-packed together. The stellar density is about a million times greater than in our Sun's stellar neighborhood. The stars are only a few light-weeks apart, while the nearest star to our Sun is over four light-years away. The stars in NGC 6397 are in constant motion, like a swarm of angry bees. The ancient stars are so crowded together that a few of them inevitably collide with each other once in a while. Near misses are even more common. Even so, collisions only occur every few million years or so. That's thousands of collisions in the 14-billion-year lifetime of the cluster. (Photo by NASA/WireImage)

For only the second time ever, a series of Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) have been discovered coming from a galaxy over 1 billion light years away. The extremely rare repetition was found by scientists in British Columbia. The bursts last less than half a second, but each one produces more energy than the sun does in one year.

Scientists remain stumped on what could be releasing the bursts. There are a vast array of occurrences that radio waves in space can indicate, such as star births, supermassive black holes, and dark matter.

Keep reading... Show less

[DIGEST: ZME Science, Wired, IFLS, Science Times, ABC]

Life with a smartphone means a never-ending search for more power. Recharging our phones is a constant concern, especially for people who travel or work away from an outlet. We cross our fingers we will make it to the end of the day, or at least till our next charging opportunity. Also, the older the phone or battery, the more frequently it needs a top off. Now, researchers have developed a cell phone that recharges itself by harvesting ambient radio signals and light — no battery needed. In other words, this phone will never run out of power.

Keep reading... Show less

[DIGEST: CNN Money, The Independent, FX Street]

We’ve all been there. You unpack from a trip and realize your charger is back at the hotel. Or your phone dies right as you Google your destination. “Keeping your cell phone charger around is a real annoyance,” said Marty Cooper, who built the first mobile phone in 1973.  

Keep reading... Show less