Monthly Archives: July 2014
Quick—are you dreaming right now? How do you know? After all, lots of dreams are pretty mundane, and you spend an awful lot of time reading lists, so it could certainly be that this website seeped into your subconscious.
A year on the newly discovered Uranus-sized exoplanet Kepler-421b lasts for 704.2 days, making it the longest orbital period exoplanet yet found. Its parent star, Kepler-421, is a G9/K0 dwarf star located in the constellation Lyra, about 1,000 light-years from Earth.
As some of you may have surmised, I have a passing interest in conspiracy theories. As a philosopher, I am fascinated by some of the fantastical contrivances that slip out of the mouths of people like Alex Jones and David Icke. My fascination stems from genuine curiosity, with specific regard to how anyone could rationalize the world so poorly.
What would we do if the Earth were about to be destroyed? “Evacuate Earth” examines this terrifying and scientifically plausible scenario by exploring the technologies we would devise to carry as many humans as possible to safety.
Betelgeuse will explode someday. It lies some 430 light-years from Earth. Yet it’s already one of the brightest stars in Earth’s sky. The reason is that Betelgeuse is a supergiant star. It is intrinsically very brilliant.
Black holes are some of the most amazing cosmological structures in the universe. We are drawn to them. Perhaps this is because they stand as a kind of sublime horror; they are super massive objects that consume entire worlds.
Since the first planet outside of our solar system was discovered in 1994, astronomers have been hunting for an elusive target: a rocky planet roughly the size of the Earth that orbits its star at a distance that would allow liquid water to persist on its surface. In 2010, exoplanet hunters announced that they’d potentially found just such a planet.
Over the famous Greek temple at Delphi was inscribed the motto, ‘Know thyself’. But according to Ben Franklin, this is easier said than done. “There are three extremely hard things,” he wrote: “steel, a diamond, and to know one’s self.” To help you with this difficult task, here are 5 details about yourself that may have slipped your notice.
A team of astronomers led by John Bochanski has found the farthest stars in our galaxy in the mysterious Milky Way halo, a rare discovery that may change our understanding of the formation of our galactic home.
Vesta, which has a 500km diameter and is located between Mars and Jupiter, is one of the largest known planet embryos and it came into existence at the same time as the Solar System.
A generation ago, the idea of a planet orbiting a distant star was still in the realm of science fiction. But since the discovery of the first exoplanet in 1988, we’ve found hundreds of them, with the discoveries coming at a faster rate over time.
Astronomy is probably the oldest science. Ancient civilizations around the world gazed up at the sky and the stars, but it wasn’t until the scientific enlightenment of the 17th century that astronomers were able to get a handle on how things actually worked up there. These new discoveries would eventually lead to the rich, fascinating picture of the universe we have today. Here are a few significant milestones that had to be reached along the way.