headshot of Associate News Editor Christopher Crockett

Christopher Crockett

Associate News Editor

Christopher Crockett is an Associate News Editor. He was formerly the astronomy writer from 2014 to 2017, and he has a Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of California, Los Angeles.

All Stories by Christopher Crockett

  1. Milky Way gas

    A giant wave of gas lurks near our solar system

    The Earth and sun are relatively near a newfound, wavy rope of star-forming gas, named the Radcliffe Wave.

  2. Milky way star cluster

    Young stars have been found in an old part of our galaxy

    A newly discovered star cluster in the Milky Way’s halo seems to have been deposited there by gas torn off of two satellite galaxies.

  3. ionized hydrogen bubbles

    Bubble-blowing galaxies could help solve a cosmic mystery

    Three galaxies ionizing hydrogen 680 million years after the Big Bang show a potential step in the ionization of nearly all hydrogen in the cosmos.

  4. Astronomy

    LIGO detects its second neutron star collision, but gains few clues

    Gravitational waves have once again heralded a smashup between neutron stars, but this time with no flash of light to help guide understanding.

  5. pulsar map

    The first glimpses of a pulsar’s surface hint at complex magnetism

    Maps of a rapidly spinning neutron star could eventually help researchers figure out how matter behaves at extraordinarily high densities.

  6. Southern Hemisphere

    A new map reveals radio waves from tens of thousands of galaxies

    Radio waves from about 17,000 galaxies show that the peak of star formation, about 10 billion years ago, might have been more productive than predicted.

  7. CHEOPS satellite illustration

    A new mission to investigate exoplanets has rocketed into space

    The European Space Agency’s CHEOPS satellite has launched on a mission to gather intel on previously discovered planets outside of the solar system.

  8. Mars Maven spacecraft

    NASA’s MAVEN probe shows how wind circulates in Mars’ upper atmosphere

    By using the MAVEN spacecraft to track winds in the Martian thermosphere, researchers hope to better understand how the atmosphere leaks into space.

  9. Parker Solar Probe illustration

    NASA’s Parker probe reveals the sun’s rogue plasma waves and magnetic islands

    Scientists have analyzed the Parker probe’s first data, giving a peek at what’s to come as the craft moves closer to the sun over the next few years.

  10. black hole

    A newfound black hole in the Milky Way is weirdly heavy

    A dark mass about 68 times as massive as the sun is locked in orbit with a star in our galaxy. Theory says that such black holes shouldn’t get so big.

  11. NGC 5477

    19 more galaxies mysteriously missing dark matter have been found

    The finding reveals a population of dwarf galaxies that defy common wisdom about how these star systems form and evolve.

  12. Space rocks hitting Earth illustration
    Planetary Science

    Ribose, a sugar needed for life, has been detected in meteorites

    Samples of rocks that fell to Earth contain a key molecular ingredient of RNA, part of life’s genetic machinery.