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Planet Discovery Reveals Distant Solar System to Rival Our Own

The discovery of an eighth planet circling the distant star Kepler-90 by UT Austin astronomer Andrew Vanderburg and Google’s Christopher Shallue overturns our solar system’s status as having the highest number of known planets. We're now in a tie. The two used 'machine learning' to find the planet.

Texas Astronomers to Lead Early Studies with $8B Webb Telescope

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is expected to launch in 2019. Steven Finkelstein leads one of the chosen Early Release Science projects as principal investigator, and several other UT astronomers play important roles in other Webb projects.

Casting GMT's Fifth Mirror

UT Austin and its partners in the Giant Magellan Telescope Organization are beginning to cast the fifth of seven enormous mirrors for GMT.

Detecting Comets Outside our Solar System

Astronomers from UT Austin and elsewhere have spotted the dusty tails of six exocomets — comets outside our solar system — orbiting a faint star 800 light years from Earth. 

New Telescope Coming Soon to McDonald

The Las Cumbres Observatory global network will build a second 1-meter telescope on Mount Fowlkes in the next two years.

How Did the First Supermassive Black Holes Form?

An international team of researchers including Texas' Shingo Hirano has used a supercomputer simulation to recreate the formation of a massive black hole from supersonic gas streams left over from the Big Bang.