Yonder Water Worlds…

Topics: Astrobiology, Astronomy, Astrophysics, Exoplanets, Space Exploration Hot, ocean-covered exoplanets with hydrogen-rich atmospheres could harbor life and may be more common than planets that are Earth-like in size, temperature, and atmospheric composition. According to astronomers at the University of Cambridge, UK, this newly defined class of exoplanets could boost the search for life elsewhere inContinue reading “Yonder Water Worlds…”

Roaming Goldilocks…

Topics: Astrophysics, Planetary Science, SETI, Space Exploration Even as a child, before he devoted his life to the search for extraterrestrial life, Frank Drake wondered whether Earth was alone in its ability to harbor life. He wasn’t the first or the only one to wonder. There’s a reason so many are fascinated by the question:Continue reading “Roaming Goldilocks…”

Flirting by Starlight…

Topics: Astrophysics, Electromagnetic Radiation, Entanglement, SETI When we gaze up at the night sky, we might be accidentally eavesdropping on an alien conversation. At least, that’s according to Imperial College London quantum physicist Terry Rudolph, who last week published preprint research theorizing that an advanced extraterrestrial civilization might alter the light coming off stars in order toContinue reading “Flirting by Starlight…”

Five Stages…

Topics: Astrophysics, Cosmology, Einstein, General Relativity, Star Trek Note: One of the things you find out about sophomore, or junior year in physics is faster-than-light travel violates causality: the arrow of time points forward, not in “loop-de-loop.” Thus, we can suspend belief as every version of Trek did time travel episodes, because superluminal speeds wouldContinue reading “Five Stages…”

Black Hole Storm…

Topics: Astrophysics, Black Holes, Cosmology, Einstein, General Relativity Note: From comments on a previous post, maybe science writers need to work on their chosen list of metaphors? In the far reaches of the Universe, a supermassive black hole is throwing a tantrum. It’s blowing a tremendous wind into intergalactic space, and we’re seeing the stormContinue reading “Black Hole Storm…”

Ganymede…

Topics: Astronomy, Astrophysics, NASA, Planetary Science, Space Exploration Ganymede, get ready for your close-up. No probe has gotten a good view of Jupiter’s largest moon since 2000, when NASA’s Galileo spacecraft swung past the strange world, which is the largest moon in the whole solar system. But on Monday (June 7),  at 1:35 p.m. EDT (1735 GMT),Continue reading “Ganymede…”

Sun Quake…

Topics: Astronomy, Astrophysics, ESA, Heliophysics, NASA For new Sun-watching spacecraft, the first solar eruption is always special. On February 12, 2021, a little more than a year from its launch, the European Space Agency and NASA’s Solar Orbiter caught sight of this coronal mass ejection, or CME. This view is from the mission’s SoloHI instrument —Continue reading “Sun Quake…”

Volume of Chaos…

Topics: Astronomy, Astrophysics, Cosmology Physicists have spent centuries grappling with an inconvenient truth about nature: Faced with three stars on a collision course, astronomers could measure their locations and velocities in nanometers and milliseconds and it wouldn’t be enough to predict the stars’ fates.  But the cosmos frequently brings together trios of stars and black holes.Continue reading “Volume of Chaos…”

Antistars…

Topics: Astronomy, Astrophysics, Cosmology, High Energy Physics Fourteen possible antimatter stars (“antistars”) have been flagged up by astronomers searching for the origin of puzzling amounts of antihelium nuclei detected coming from deep space by the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS-02) on the International Space Station. Three astronomers at the University of Toulouse – Simon Dupourqué, LuigiContinue reading “Antistars…”

The Question is Moot…

Topics: Astrobiology, Astronomy, Astrophysics, SETI Cultural references: The post title refers to NC A&T Alumni, and Civil Rights icon Reverend Jesse Jackson’s appearance on Saturday Night Live, and the Wow! signal. Personal note: This signal appeared on the same day my granddaughter was born. On April 29, 2019, the Parkes Radio Telescope in Australia beganContinue reading “The Question is Moot…”