Author Archives: abbeyrstephens

Thanks for a Wonderful Semester!

This has been an absolute whirlwind of a semester! There was not a class that went by in which I didn’t learn anything (and most of the time I learned multiple things)! And even though I feel like I understand solar systems and the universe a little better now, I can definitely say that the […] Continue reading

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Possible Messages from Aliens?

Recently, the search for alien life has become more and more prevalent in astronomy during this past century. New fields, such as astrobiology, have formed. Theories and formulas focused on the search for alien life, such as the Fermi Paradox and the Drake Equation, have become widely known. Messages for possible intelligent life have been […] Continue reading

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Jupiter’s Watery Moon

Recent evidence has shown that Jupiter’s largest moon (and the largest moon in our solar system), Ganymede, has a massive ocean lying underneath a thick layer of ice. In fact, it’s believed to have more water than all of Earth! Ganymede, which is just slightly larger than the planet Mercury, has long been suspected of […] Continue reading

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Venus’s Atmosphere

In my opinion, one of the most interesting things in the readings was the section about Venus and its atmosphere in Chapter 10. What I found so interesting about it was the fact that Venus and Earth are so alike in terms of size and mass, but the difference that distance from the Sun made […] Continue reading

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Earth-Like Planets?

There was a journal article released last week from the Australian National University with the title, “Scientists Predict Earth-Like Planets around Most Stars”. To summarize, using the idea of the “Goldilocks zone” (the distance from a star where liquid water can exist) and applying it to the exoplanets discovered by the Kepler telescope, astronomers have […] Continue reading

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One of the topics I found most interesting to think about in these readings is the topic of archaeoastronomy. I had never even heard of this concept before reading chapter 3! It’s very interesting to think about how ancient civilizations viewed the sky. Some, like the Blackfoot tribes in the Americas, viewed the Sun, Moon, […] Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

The astronomer I chose to look closer at was Tycho Brahe! He was born on December 14, 1546 and died on October 24, 1601 at the age of 54. During his life, two major events that happened were the Massacre of Novgorod by Ivan the Terrible and the founding of Buenos Aires by Juan de […] Continue reading

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The Observable Universe

It is extremely difficult for humans to wrap our minds around how big the universe is. Even when we think we can maybe understand it, the more we discover and learn, the more mysterious and seemingly larger it becomes. One of the things about the size of the universe that our book mentions that really […] Continue reading

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