US astronomers have made the first photo of an exoplanet that makes it rounds around the star Formalhaut. It took a couple of years (and a lot of patience) to actually confirm the planet though. Additionally, another team of astronomers made a picture of 2 planets orbiting a star called HR8799 (Washington Post report). Generally, it seems. it was a good week for astronomy.
New Scientist had an article about a theory that the Earth might be in the center of a void: at the heart of the discussion is the 1998 discovery that some galaxies seem to have been racing away from us instead of slowing down. This discovery is currently explained by introducing ‘dark energy’, the energy that tends to accelerate the rate of expansion of the universe. The new theory proposes that our universe (the Milky Way) is surrounded by a ‘bubble’ that causes photons to lose energy but gaining energy while leaving this bubble.
I also read that India has succesfully landed a probe on the moon. For the next couple of weeks, the probe (‘Chandrayaan 1′), will measure the composition of the moon’s thin atmosphere.