Reviews & Analysis

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  • This Perspective discusses massive black holes in dwarf galaxies and presents new insights on the demographics of nearby dwarf galaxies to help constrain the black hole occupation/active fraction as a function of mass and dwarf galaxy type.

    • Amy E. Reines
  • This Review summarizes what is known of the stellar and chemical properties of nearby (<20 Mpc) star-forming dwarf galaxies. These objects resemble the earliest formed galaxies and may thus represent a window on the distant, early Universe.

    • Francesca Annibali
    • Monica Tosi
    Review Article
  • Samples returned from the carbonaceous (C-type) asteroid 162173 Ryugu by the Hayabusa2 mission were preliminarily analysed in a non-destructive manner. Their dark spectral features, small densities and absence of a high-temperature component imply that they are most similar to primitive CI group chondrites, but show some differences to known planetary materials.

    Research Briefing
  • A new model demonstrates how the formation of annular structures in a protoplanetary disk can later produce planetary systems that reproduce both the orbital architecture and meteoritic isotope trends observed in our Solar System.

    • Bradley M. S. Hansen
    News & Views
  • A new model for the origin of the Solar System proposes planet building blocks formed fast from material that was transported outwards to cooler regions. It claims to be consistent with the properties of ancient meteorites.

    • Chris Ormel
    News & Views
  • A multi-disciplinary team recently came together online to discuss the application of sonification in astronomy, focusing on the effective use of sound for scientific discovery and for improving accessibility to astronomy research and education.

    • Chris Harrison
    • Anita Zanella
    • Nicolas Misdariis
    Meeting Report
  • The first robotically obtained samples of a carbonaceous asteroid have been safely returned to Earth. A non-destructive first-look analysis shows that asteroid Ryugu may be a CI chondrite with interesting variations.

    • Beth Ellen Clark
    News & Views
  • The accretion history of main belt asteroid Vesta is unknown. A new model shows Vesta may have accreted materials from the terrestrial planet region.

    • Simone Marchi
    News & Views
  • Unlocking the internal secrets of a β Cephei star with a state-of-the-art polarimeter may open up a greater understanding of whether a massive star eventually explodes in a supernova or collapses directly to a black hole.

    • Dietrich Baade
    News & Views
  • The limits on late accretion and its associated water delivery to potential habitable planets are derived by examining the dynamical stability of the resonance-bound TRAPPIST-1 system.

    • Masahiro Ogihara
    News & Views
  • A simulated hybrid emission model to mimic the morphology of the jet launching region of M87 reproduces the observed shape of the innermost jet and favours a high spin of the central black hole.

    • Bidisha Bandyopadhyay
    News & Views
  • A fluorine abundance measurement in a high-redshift galaxy demonstrates an early, quick rise in chemical enrichment of the Universe. The presence of fluorine at this early epoch also reveals a unique early source of the element.

    • Nils Ryde
    • Graham Harper
    News & Views
  • The annual Fast Radio Bursts conference was again held entirely online this year, from 28 July to 5 August 2021. It included plenary talks, posters, lightning talks, late-breaking news and discussion sessions.

    • Jason W. T. Hessels
    Meeting Report
  • Radio images from the Low Frequency Array have revealed complex, filamentary radio emission around a radio galaxy undergoing multiple episodes of radio outbursts, showcasing the importance of magnetic fields for the survival of radio filaments far from the radio core.

    • Ruta Kale
    News & Views
  • Cosmological simulation TNG50 reveals that a recently discovered population of isolated but non-star-forming ultra-diffuse galaxies may have been gas-rich satellites of much more massive galaxies in the distant past.

    • Anna C. Wright
    News & Views
  • Held in Suzhou, Jiangsu province of China in June 2021, the conference served to unite a wide community of planetary science within China, and hopes to become one of the world’s premier planetary science conferences in the future.

    • Zhaojin Rong
    • Jun Cui
    • Yong Wei
    Meeting Report
  • Recent observations show that some galaxies exist that have already run out of fuel only a few billion years after the Big Bang, challenging the current view on how galaxies form and evolve in a cold dark-matter-dominated Universe.

    • Claudia Maraston
    News & Views