Could this rare supernova resolve a longstanding origin debate?

Pasadena, CA—Detection of a supernova with an unusual chemical signature by a team of astronomers led by Carnegie’s Juna Kollmeier—and including Carnegie’s Nidia Morrell, Anthony Piro, Mark Phillips, and Josh Simon—may hold the key to solving the longstanding mystery that

TESS finds its first Earth-sized planet

Pasadena, CA—A nearby system hosts the first Earth-sized planet discovered by NASA’s Transiting Exoplanets Survey Satellite, as well as a warm sub-Neptune-sized world, according to a new paper from a team of astronomers that includes Carnegie’s Johanna Te

Letter from the Director: March 2019

Dear Friends, I hope 2019 finds you well. This year we are celebrating the 50-year anniversary of our Las Campanas Observatory, which we often refer to here as simply LCO. Located at the southern edge of the Atacama Desert, LCO serves as the primary research facility for most of our astronomers...

Postdoc Spotlight: Allison Strom

Portrait of Allison Strom
What questions are you pursuing in your career? When we think about our origins, we tend to think about exoplanet science—how Earth and our Solar System came to be—but we don’t know where the Milky Way came from, let alone the Solar System and the Earth. In order to better understand how we got...

Carnegie Outreach Goes Bilingual

Telescope Use at the Neighborhood Astronomy Night
The Observatories kicked off 2019 with an exciting new community outreach event here in Pasadena—our first Neighborhood Astronomy Night! We worked with our Pasadena City Council district to plan an outreach event that would reach the community surrounding our Santa Barbara Street headquarters. The...

Where is Earth’s submoon?

Pasadena, CA— “Can moons have moons?”

This simple question—asked by the four-year old son of Carnegie’s Juna Kollmeier—started it all.  Not long after this initial bedtime query,  Kollmeier was coordinating a program at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (KITP)  on the Milky Way while her one-time college classmate Sean Raymond of Université de Bordeaux was attending a parallel KITP program on the dynamics of Earth-like planets.   After discussing this very simple question at a seminar, the two joined forces to solve it.  Their findings are the basis of a paper published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Postdoc Spotlight: Eduardo Bañados

Portrait of Allison Strom
Eduardo Banados portrait.jpg We talked to Carnegie-Princeton Fellow Eduardo Bañados before he starts his scientific staff position at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany. You’ve no doubt seen his quasar discoveries in the news. Now it’s time to meet the scientist behind the headlines...

Archives as Memories: Collaborations at The Observatories

Photograph of drawer of plates in the Sandage collection
We televise rocket launches, celebrate astronomical discoveries, and delight in images of stars and worlds beyond our own. As Carnegie astronomer Allan Sandage once wrote, “astronomy is everybody’s second science ... it’s the general public’s escape.” As I work with the historical glass plate...

Carnegie astronomers preserve dark skies for generations

Fifty years ago, when the first international observatories were installed in Chile, light pollution seemed unthinkable due to the low population density and small size of villages and mining sites in the Atacama Desert. A few decades later, Chile’s economic growth has brought it to the brink of...