Daily Archives: April 6, 2015

The Search for Extrasolar Planets

Extrasolar planets, or exoplanets, lie outside our solar system. We have so far discovered nearly 2000 exoplanets, most of which are Jovian planets like Jupiter. However in 2009, a possibly Earth like planet was discovered: Gliese 581d had the potential to support liquid water on its possibly rocky surface. It has a mass of around […] Continue reading

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Martian Aurora?

Source: National Geographic NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft has recently detected a strange aurora in the lower atmosphere of Mars. Dubbed “Christmas lights” by scientists, the mysterious phenomenon occurred for five days in December, following a solar electron storm. On Earth, auroras are formed when these particles slam into atmospheric atoms, but on Mars, the lack of […] Continue reading

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Studying the Effects of Space Travel on the Human Body

NASA is conducting an experiment to determine the effects of living in space on the human body. Such studies have been done before, but this one is unprecedented in the length of time the subject will spend in space (a full 365 days) and in that the participants are identical twins. One astronaut named Scott […] Continue reading

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Exoplanet in Four Star System

Source: Discovery News Astronomers recently discovered the second exoplanet known to be part of a four star system. To find a planet in such a system is rare because the gravitational interaction between the stars are likely to remove planets from any sort of stable orbit. Four star systems are fairly rare themselves, making up […] Continue reading

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Planet Discovered with Four Parent Stars

Binary star systems, like the one featured in the Tatooine system of Star Wars are common in the universe with half of all systems being comprised that way. Ternary system, or systems with three stars, are more rare, and even more rare are quaternion systems. Planets within these four star systems are also rare, so much so […] Continue reading

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The Toughest Creature in the World

In the early 1700s, several different scientists examining the components of water and water habitats came across a miniscule creature …

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0.58% vs 24%

The new NASA 2016 budget proposal of $18.53 billion was a $519 million increase from the $18.01 billion of 2015. However, despite NASA’s countless achievements and positive reputation, many people believe NASA’s budget is too high. Disregarding the significant influence that politics exerts on NASA, the main reason for public dissatisfaction towards NASA is due to … Continue reading 0.58% vs 24% Continue reading

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Blog Post #8: Mike Brown and Eris

We did blog posts on historical astronomers, so why not take a look at recent history, too? Mike Brown was briefly mentioned …

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Blog Post #7: Comets Can Be Artists Too

bbc.com A new study shows that Mercury may have been “painted” black by passing comets. In class, we have learned to compare …

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