the branch of astronomy that deals with the study of celestial objects by means of the gamma rays that come from them.
Beware the email rumor about “Betelgeuse.” What does “Betelgeuse” mean, anyhow?
Betelgeuse has been in the news again recently. No, not the creepy character played by Michael Keaton in the 1988 Tim Burton movie Beetlejuice . We’re talking about the red supergiant star in the constellation Orion, that Betelgeuse. Apparently, some pseudo-scientific gossip is circulating online claiming that Betelgeuse will explode in 2012, causing damaging neutrino release and gamma radiation. There will be two bright, sun-like …
Read more in this article about some frequently asked questions and fun facts related to our definitions.
Origin of gamma-ray astronomy
First recorded in 1960–1965
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
the investigation of cosmic gamma rays, such as those from quasars
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
gamma ray astronomy
The study of astronomical objects by analyzing the gamma rays they emit. Because gamma rays are subject to atmospheric interference that makes them difficult to observe using ground-based telescopes, high-altitude balloons and orbiting observatories are often used to detect them. Most gamma rays in the universe are produced by events such as supernovas and black holes.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.