Hot space projects produce cool cosmic discoveries

NASA, ESA and others' spacecraft and telescopes find new planet, make sense of old ones and solve cosmic mysteries

The dark side: NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has taken images of supernova that NASA says are critical for studying the dark energy that astronomers think pervades the universe. The results show mergers of two dense stellar remnants that are the likely cause of many of the supernovae that have been used to measure the accelerated expansion of the universe. Most scientists agree a Type 1a supernova occurs when a white dwarf star -- a collapsed remnant of an elderly star -- exceeds its weight limit, becomes unstable and explodes, NASA says.

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