Astrophysics & Cosmology

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Five Years of Illumination: SLAC's Linac Coherent Light Source

Five years ago, the brightest source of X-rays on the planet lit up at SLAC. The Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) X-ray laser's scientific and technical progress since its momentous "first light" have been no less luminous, say those who have played a role in its success.

Stalking Gamma Rays from the Ground

Scientists from the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology are helping build cameras for the Cherenkov Telescope Array, an advanced, ground-based gamma-ray observatory.

SLAC, Stanford Scientists Play Key Roles in Confirming Cosmic Inflation

Two scientists at Stanford University and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory made key contributions to the discovery of the first direct evidence for cosmic inflation – the rapid expansion of the infant universe in the first trillionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a second after the Big Bang.

Physicists Find Evidence of Cosmic Inflation

Researchers from the BICEP2 collaboration have announced the first direct evidence supporting the theory of cosmic inflation. Their data also represent the first images of gravitational waves, or ripples in space-time. These waves have been described as the "first tremors of the Big Bang."

NASA: With A Deadly Embrace, 'Spidery' Pulsars Consume Their Mates

Black widow spiders and their Australian cousins, known as redbacks, are notorious for their tainted love, expressed as an unsettling tendency to kill and devour their male partners. Astronomers have noted similar behavior among two rare breeds of binary system that contain rapidly spinning neutron stars, also known as pulsars.

Cosmic Rays on Demand

In a SLAC test facility, scientists have set the stage for an experiment that mimics what happens when incredibly energetic cosmic ray particles hit our atmosphere. While the experiment is part of ANITA, which sends balloon-borne instruments into the upper atmosphere, the results could benefit a broad range of other experiments.

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