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Astronomers now closer to understanding one of the hardest-to-reach places in the universe

The NICER instrument installed on the International Space Station, as captured by a high-definition external camera on Oct. 22, 2018..jpg
Posted at 5:47 PM, May 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-04 17:47:36-04

Have you ever wondered what it might be like inside a star that’s twice as massive as the Sun, but only the size of a city? ­­

Then you’ll be pleased to learn real-time science is catching up with science fiction, and that is thanks to a NASA telescope called Nicer on board the International Space Station.

Astronomers are now closer to understanding one of the hardest-to-reach places in the universe - the inner core of a star on the verge of becoming a black hole. These are neutron stars, a black hole’s smaller cousin and leftovers of an exploded massive star.

News 3 anchor Barbara Ciara spoke with an astronomer from the NASA team who gets a close up look at black holes and neutron stars from a galaxy far, far away. You can watch their conversation in the video player above.

Thanks to NASA’s Nicer telescope, which collects data from its perch on the International Space Station, scientists are now a step closer to understanding these strange objects, which could harbor clues to how our universe works.

If you would like to learn more about neutron stars and how the space station telescope works, click here.