Keyword: astronomy

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  • Scientists receive $1.3 million to study new propulsion idea for spacecraft

    09/17/2018 4:44:12 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 28 replies
    Univ. of Plymouth ^ | 9/17/18 | Alan Williams
    Spacecraft and satellites could in future be launched into space without the need for fuel, thanks to a revolutionary new theory. Dr Mike McCulloch, from the University of Plymouth, first put forward the idea of quantised inertia (QI) – through which he believes light can be converted into thrust – in 2007. He has now received $1.3million from the United States Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for a four-year study which aims to make the concept a reality. The QI theory predicts that objects can be pushed by differences in the intensity of so-called Unruh radiation in space, similar...
  • Hubble Space Telescope Focuses on Coma Cluster

    09/17/2018 10:47:54 AM PDT · by ETL · 42 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Sep 17, 2018 | News Staff / SourcE
    The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has taken a detailed image of a spectacular part of the Coma cluster, a structure of over a thousand galaxies bound together by gravity. The Coma Cluster, also known as Abell 1656, lies in the northern constellation of Coma Berenices, about 300 million light-years away from Earth.Many of the galaxies in the cluster are ellipticals, as is NGC 4860, the brighter of the two galaxies dominating this Hubble image.However, the outskirts of the cluster also host younger spiral galaxies that proudly display their swirling arms.Again, this image shows a wonderful example of such a galaxy...
  • How Fast Is Earth Moving?

    09/11/2018 11:27:07 AM PDT · by ETL · 90 replies
    Space.com ^ | June 22, 2018 | Elizabeth Howell, Space.com Contributor
    How Fast Is Earth Moving? As an Earthling, it's easy to believe that we're standing still. After all, we don't feel any movement in our surroundings. But when you look at the sky, you can see evidence that we are moving. Some of the earliest astronomers proposed that we live in a geocentric universe, which means that Earth is at the center of everything. They said the sun rotated around us, which caused sunrises and sunsets — same for the movements of the moon and the planets. But there were certain things that didn't work with this vision. Sometimes, a...
  • This Week’s Penumbral Lunar Eclipse and the Astronomy of Columbus

    10/14/2013 2:33:26 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 5 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | October 14, 2013 | David Dickinson on
    In Columbus’s day, the Moon was often used to get a rough fix of a ship’s longitude at sea. Columbus was especially intrigued with the idea of using lunar eclipses to determine longitude. If you can note the position of the Moon in the sky from one location versus a known longitude during an event— such as first contact of the Moon with the Earth’s umbra during an eclipse —you can gauge your relative longitude east or west of the point. The sky moves 15 degrees, or one hour of right ascension overhead as we rotate under it. One of...
  • Sheriff Furious After FBI Mysteriously Shuts Down Solar Observatory

    09/10/2018 11:56:35 AM PDT · by chief lee runamok · 98 replies
    constitution ^ | September 10, 2018 | Andrew West
    In what may be one of the more bizarre stories of 2018 so far, an undisclosed security threat has shut down a solar observatory in New Mexico, and angered local authorities in the process.
  • Jupiter's Icy Moon Europa Has a Really Weird Cold Spot

    09/07/2018 2:11:28 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 18 replies
    Space.com ^ | September 7, 2018 12:19pm ET | Meghan Bartels,
    Just because Jupiter's moon Europa is coated in ice doesn't mean all that ice is the same temperature. And now, scientists have mapped the hot and cold spots on the moon's surface using data gathered from Earth, with accuracy down to 125 miles (200 kilometers). While most of the temperature variations they measured can be explained by sunlight's influence on the ice, there's one unusually cold spot that is stumping the scientists behind the new research. That spot, which falls on the moon's northern hemisphere, stood out in images taken at different times of the day, which surprised the scientists....
  • Chandra X-ray Observatory Discovers Ring of Dense Compact Objects in Distant Galaxy

    09/07/2018 7:29:12 AM PDT · by ETL · 30 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Sept 7, 2018 | News Staff / Source
    A remarkable ring of bright X-ray sources — black holes or neutron stars — has been discovered in a galaxy approximately 300 million light years from Earth. This ring was forged when one galaxy smashed through the middle of another, creating ripples in the gas. “Where did the ring of black holes or neutron stars in this galaxy — the so-called ring galaxy AM 0644-741 — come from? We think that it was created when one galaxy was pulled into another galaxy by the force of gravity,” said Dr. Anna Wolter of the Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera and co-authors.“The first...
  • The US Geological Survey Is Getting Serious About Space Resources and Mining

    09/06/2018 9:36:42 AM PDT · by ETL · 11 replies
    Space.com ^ | Sept 4, 2018 | Leonard David, Space.com's Space Insider Columnist
    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is starting to earnestly evaluate space resources for future mining.  Since its establishment in the 1870s, the USGS has focused pretty much solely on Earth. But now it's also investigating what benefits may or may not exist in tapping extraterrestrial water, minerals and metals. The agency seeks to portray accurately how humanity could exploit off-Earth assets — a no-nonsense approach that contrasts with the pie-in-the-sky estimates of trillions of dollars of profit proffered by some less scientifically minded space-mining advocates.Proven expertise This past June, several USGS experts took part in a Space Resources Roundtable held at...
  • TRAPPIST-1 Worlds Are Rocky and Rich in Water, New Research Uncover

    09/05/2018 5:51:09 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 20 replies
    Space.com ^ | September 5, 2018 06:30am ET | Nola Taylor Redd,
    The seven planets orbiting the ultracool dwarf star TRAPPIST-1 are mostly rocky, with some potentially holding more liquid water than Earth. New research reveals the density of the worlds within this crowded system to a greater precision than ever before. The findings reveal that some of the planets could have up to 5 percent of their mass in liquid water form, about 250 times as much water as found in Earth's oceans. "All the TRAPPIST-1 planets are very Earth-like — they have a solid core, surrounded by an atmosphere," In addition to narrowing down the composition of the exoplanets, the...
  • The Air Leak on the ISS May Have Been Deliberate

    09/04/2018 4:02:13 PM PDT · by grundle · 70 replies
    Popular Mechanics via yahoo.com ^ | September 4, 2018 | Avery Thompson
    Late last week, the astronauts aboard the International Space Station woke up to some distressing news: There was a leak somewhere on the station, and air was escaping into space. After an extensive search, the leak was finally found and plugged with tape and gauze, and the air pressure inside the station has been stabilized. But now that the crisis has passed, there’s a new concern for the astronauts and the space agencies that manage the station. How exactly did that hole get there in the first place? At first, the theory was that a stray micrometeorite collided with the...
  • Brazil's Biggest Meteorite Survives Museum-Destroying Fire

    09/04/2018 12:43:11 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    Space.com ^ | September 4, 2018 12:42pm ET | Hanneke Weitering,
    After a catastrophic fire blazed through the National Museum of Brazil on Sunday (Sept. 2), destroying many of the institution's 20 million artifacts, the museum's meteorites were some of the few relics left standing. Among the space rocks that survived the blaze is the Bendegó meteorite, which is the largest meteorite ever found on Brazilian soil. The iron-nickel meteorite is one of about a dozen meteorites housed at the museum. … Officials have not yet been able to tally the damages, as investigators have been instructed to hold off on their work until engineers declare the building safe to enter,...
  • New Horizons Spots Its Next Flyby Target: Kuiper Belt Object 2014 MU69

    09/01/2018 9:48:48 AM PDT · by ETL · 10 replies
    Sci-News.com ^ | Aug 31, 2018 | News Staff / Source
    MU69 is a relatively small Kuiper Belt object. It is estimated to have a diameter of 30 miles (48 km) — that’s more than 10 times larger and 1,000 times more massive than typical comets, but only about 0.5 to 1% of the size of the dwarf planet Pluto. This object was discovered in June 2014 by astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope.Also known as PT1 and 1110113Y, and nicknamed Ultima Thule, MU69 orbits the Sun once every 293 years at a distance of more than 4 billion miles (6.5 billion km) from Earth.The MU69 flyby will be the...
  • Plutonian craters to be named after Star Trek characters

    08/31/2018 11:33:46 PM PDT · by vannrox · 29 replies
    astrobites ^ | Apr 2, 2015 | Ruth Angus
    n July of this year (2015), NASA’s New Horizons mission will fly past Pluto and its moons. It will map the surface of the Plutonian system in unprecedented detail, revealing craters and other surface features for the first time. In preparation for the deluge of newly discovered craters, mountains, crevasses and other surface features, Mamajek et al. discuss a naming system for Pluto and its moons. Pluto is one of the last large planetesimals in the Solar system to have its surface imaged in detail. Pluto’s surface features will reveal the history of its life in the alien conditions at...
  • Cosmic zombies: Black holes can reanimate dead stars

    08/31/2018 9:14:04 AM PDT · by ETL · 20 replies
    Space.com ^ | August 30, 2018 | Mike Wall, Space.com Senior Writer
    Close encounters with medium-size black holes can reanimate dead stars, if only momentarily, a new study suggests. A team of astronomers performed computer simulations to determine what happens when a burned-out stellar corpse known as a white dwarf passes close to an intermediate-mass black hole — one that harbors between 1,000 and 10,000 times the mass of Earth's sun. The researchers determined that the black hole's powerful gravity can stretch and distort the white dwarf's previously inert innards so dramatically that nuclear-fusion processes can reignite for a few seconds, converting helium, carbon and oxygen into heavier elements such as iron....
  • Dramatic Polar Light Show On Saturn

    08/31/2018 2:25:58 AM PDT · by zeestephen
    Watts Up With That ^ | 30 August 2018 | Anthony Watts
    Astronomers using the Hubble Space telescope have taken a series of images featuring the fluttering auroras at the north pole of Saturn. The observations were taken in ultraviolet light and the resulting images provide astronomers with the most comprehensive picture so far of Saturn’s northern aurora...Because the atmosphere of each of the four outer planets in the Solar System is – unlike the Earth – dominated by hydrogen, Saturn’s auroras can only be seen in ultraviolet wavelengths
  • Velikovsky, Hero or Villain? Plasma Cosmology Astronomy -YouTube video

    01/28/2008 1:51:04 AM PST · by Swordmaker · 29 replies · 576+ views
    YouTube video ^ | 01/28/2008
    Well made YouTube video on the relationship of Immanuel Velikovsky and the Electric Universe. Velikovsky, Hero or Villain? Plasma Cosmology Astronomy Many of the predictions made by Velikovsky have proven true... while the traditional astronomers and cosmologists are repeatedly surprised by the findings.
  • Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner [Beautiful green comet]

    08/25/2018 10:59:05 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 37 replies
    Comet Watch UK ^ | 2018 | editors
    Giacobini-Zinner’s return in 2018 is a promising one as it passes the Earth at a distance of 0.39 au. In June, 2018, 21p will be observable from modest sized telescopes sitting in the constellation of Cygnus reaching a brightness of magnitude 11 by month end. Although for many in the northern hemisphere, the sky will not reach true astronomical darkness all month. Between 17-21 June, the comet will skim past the ‘Mexico’ region of the North America nebula making for a nice widefield shot for photographers (again battling the twilight). The comet will then brighten rapidly through July and August by which time...
  • NASA forecasts asteroid bigger than a PYRAMID for '20,000mph close Earth approach'

    08/22/2018 10:29:01 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 27 replies
    www.dailystar.co.uk ^ | 21st August 2018 | By David Rivers
    The space agency said the 2016 NF23 is hurtling rapidly at a speed of around 20,000mph. At that speed, it is around 15 times faster than the 1,354mph the retired Concorde travelled at. The 2016 NF23 also measures up to a jaw-dropping 160metres. At that size, it is bigger than the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt which measures 139m. It is listed on NASA's Earth Close Approaches page, despite whizzing by at a distance of 3million miles away. But in space terms, it is considered close enough that it will pay attention to it. At 160m, it is considered...
  • Chasing asteroids: Dual missions sniff out clues to solar system's past

    08/20/2018 10:28:19 AM PDT · by Jagermonster · 5 replies
    The Christian Science Monitor ^ | August 17, 2018 | Eva Botkin-Kowacki, Staff Writer
    Boston - It was a normal Friday morning in the industrial city of Chelyabinsk, Russia. Adults were on their way to work, and children were in school. But that ordinary day was about to become extraordinary. Suddenly, a fireball shot across the clear morning sky leaving a thick trail of smoke, accompanied by the sound of a huge explosion. The shock wave knocked people over, shattered glass, and collapsed a factory roof. As many as 1,200 people were injured. A global network of infrasound sensors designed to pick up nuclear explosions calculated that the boom was 30 to 40 times...
  • NASA Spacecraft Begins Final Approach to Big Asteroid Bennu

    08/21/2018 8:21:46 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 24 replies
    Space.com ^ | | August 20, 2018 06:40pm ET | Mike Wall,
    The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft began its final approach toward the big near-Earth asteroid Bennu on Friday (Aug. 17), NASA officials said. The milestone also marks the official start of OSIRIS-REx's "asteroid operations" mission phase, they added. OSIRIS-REx is still about 1.2 million miles (2 million kilometers) from Bennu and won't arrive in orbit around the 1,650-foot-wide (500 meters) space rock until Dec. 3. The $800 million OSIRIS-REx mission — whose name is short for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer — launched on Sept. 8, 2016, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. If all goes according to...