Posts tagged with ‘astronomy

Science fiction stories with good astronomy and physics

This is a selective list of some short stories and novels that use more or less accurate science and can be used for teaching or reinforcing astronomy or physics concepts. Included are both traditional “science-fiction” and (occasionally) more serious fiction that derives meaning or plot from astronomy or physics ideas.

See the full list here

And here’s that video of a skydiver almost getting hit by a meteorite

Not only are the odds of this happening so astronomical (pun intended), imagine had the guy actually smacked into the thing and been killed. There would have been no other explanation that God just had it out for this guy, personally.

Afternoon science: Just how big is the universe anyway?

Really really big. And there may be lots and lots of them.

Astronomers may have found another dwarf planet in our solar system

It was the discovery of a number of tiny dwarf planets beyond Pluto, in the Kuiper Belt, that prompted the definition of dwarf planet vs regular planet. But most of these except Sedna were within the Kuiper Belt… between that and the edge of the Oort Cloud, astronomers thought there was pretty much nothing. And then this faint pink dot shows up, an icy world orbiting 44 billion miles away from the Sun. For right now, the planet is just called VP113, and is technically being called a “sednoid” right now due to its weird spot waaaay out there on the edge of the solar system.

Read the story here

First Asteroid With Rings Discovered (like how cool is that?!)
Until now it seemed that only giant planets had the gravity to hold on to the billions of bits of orbiting ice and dust that make up a ring, but in a paper published today in Nature, astronomers report the discovery of two icy rings around a small object named Chariklo that orbits between Saturn and Uranus.
The discovery was made possible by observations at many sites in South America, including ESO's La Silla Observatory. The origin of these rings remains a mystery, but they may be the result of a collision that created a disc of debris.
"This probably will be the biggest discovery of my career," says Felipe Braga-Ribas of the National Observatory in Brazil, who led the team that found the rings, and who received his Ph.D. just last year.
Sources: 1, 2Illustration by Lucie Maquet

First Asteroid With Rings Discovered (like how cool is that?!)

Until now it seemed that only giant planets had the gravity to hold on to the billions of bits of orbiting ice and dust that make up a ring, but in a paper published today in Nature, astronomers report the discovery of two icy rings around a small object named Chariklo that orbits between Saturn and Uranus.

The discovery was made possible by observations at many sites in South America, including ESO's La Silla Observatory. The origin of these rings remains a mystery, but they may be the result of a collision that created a disc of debris.

"This probably will be the biggest discovery of my career," says Felipe Braga-Ribas of the National Observatory in Brazil, who led the team that found the rings, and who received his Ph.D. just last year.

Sources: 1, 2
Illustration by Lucie Maquet

(Source: sci-universe)

A car-sized meteorite travelling at 38000mph struck the moon in Sept 2013, and the entire event was caught on video

The explosion was recorded by the MIDAS project (Moon Impacts Detection and Analysis System), which consists of several large telescopes in Seville, Spain. The explosion had a yield of about 15 tons of TNT.

It looks like there’s liquid water flowing on Mars right fucking now

The majority of exploration into the presence of water on Mars deals with looking for evidence that there was water on the planet at some point in the past. But NASA JPL has announced they think water may be flowing right this very moment. A combination of salt and iron may be giving this seeping groundwater a natural antifreeze property, and you wouldn’t want to drink it, but still, shit… water on Mars as we speak.

Read the story here

New theory suggests that instead of a bang, the universe emerged from a long, deep freeze

Conventional thinking has it that the universe and all the matter within it exploded out from a single point, the so-called Big Bang Singularity. But a German theoretical physicists says this never happened. Instead, the universe started empty and cold, slowly emerging from a deep freeze.

Read the story here

What does the future hold? Find out with this comprehensive timeline of the far future
There are millions of things no one can really predict, but there are also plenty of events that are predictable, or at least pretty certain. Things like the death of the sun, the galaxies crashing into each other and constellations pulling apart. If you want to know when you should or shouldn’t set your time machine for, the BBC has put together an impressive timeline of the far future.
See the full chart here

What does the future hold? Find out with this comprehensive timeline of the far future

There are millions of things no one can really predict, but there are also plenty of events that are predictable, or at least pretty certain. Things like the death of the sun, the galaxies crashing into each other and constellations pulling apart. If you want to know when you should or shouldn’t set your time machine for, the BBC has put together an impressive timeline of the far future.

See the full chart here

Minute Physics video of the day: Why is the solar system flat?

Well, mostly flat. Other than Pluto and the Keuper Belt objects, the rest of the solar system is in a remarkable flat orbital disk. What up with that?

A look at the surface of the sun in different wavelengths

This video of the sun based on data from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, shows the wide range of wavelengths — invisible to the naked eye — that the telescope can view. SDO converts the wavelengths into an image humans can see, and the light is colorized into a rainbow of colors.

How astronomers detect alien Atmospheres

Or, How I learned to stop hating God and use the divine blessings He bestowed upon me which allow exploration and understanding of the visible universe by observing periodic variations in a parent star’s brightness and the splitting of its spectrum of transmitted light during an exoplanet’s transit in order to determine characteristics such as density, size and atmospheric properties and thereby bring further Glory to His name.






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