Author Archives: samssolarsystem

The Olber Paradox

My appreciation for astronomy and astrological theorization and examination has increased significantly throughout this course.  From the periphery, astronomy seems overwhelmingly complex and unimaginable.  But, when you venture into the weeds and examine closely, it is remarkably intuitive and fundamental.  Still, certain phenomena have yielded contradictory conclusions that befuddle some of the brightest of minds.  … Continue reading The Olber Paradox Continue reading

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Incredibly species of microorganism and microbes have tested the limits of evolutionary theory as they have been discovered to survive an incredible range of extreme conditions.  These microbes, called extremophiles can survive in various extremes: incredibly high temperatures, near-vacuum condition of space, and in the freezing cold.  In fact, scientists have discovered microbes within the … Continue reading Extremophiles Continue reading

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The Voyager program was first to photograph Io, when it deployed its two high-resolution imaging probes (Voyager I and Voyager 2) on September 5 and August 20, 1977 to investigate the Galilean moon.  Io, one of Jupiter’s four Galilean moon, is a fascinating celestial object.  In fact, Io is the most volcanically active world in our Solar System.  Io’s surface is … Continue reading Io Continue reading

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Comets get the “dirty snowball” nickname from their composition: they are a little bit of rocky dust, a good amount of chunks of ice, and a pinch of more complex compounds.  Spectra analysis reveals the presence of hydrogen compounds within comets, and the existence of hydrogen compounds like water and the presence of carbon dioxide … Continue reading Comets Continue reading

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Nuclear Fusion

Nuclear Fusion refers to the nuclear reaction in which atomic nuclei of low atomic number elements fuse to form a heavier nucleus.  This reactions releases energy and is how the sun and other stars generate light and heat.  Energy is produced during the smashing of the lighter atoms, which is most easily achieved on Earth … Continue reading Nuclear Fusion Continue reading

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Solar Wind

The corona, the outer layer of the sun’s atmosphere, can reach temperatures of up to 2 million degrees Fahrenheit.  This atmospheric temperature emits incredible amounts of thermal energy, which causes the particles in the corona to rapidly move around.  At a certain point, the sun’s gravity cannot contain these particles and they breach the sun’s … Continue reading Solar Wind Continue reading

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Gravity is a fascinating phenomenon of physics that is integral to understanding the universe.  Gravity keeps Earth in orbit around the sun, and the Moon in orbit around Earth.  Any object that has mass, also has gravity. Moreover, the gravitational force between two objects is caused by two factors: mass and distance.  The gravitational force … Continue reading Gravity Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

Chosen Astronomer: Johannes Kepler Born: December 27, 1571, at roughly 1pm. Died: November 15, 1630. Historical events: On March 24, 1603, when Kepler was 32, Elizabeth I of England died and was succeeded by her cousin King James VI of Scotland. His ascension of the throne united the crowns of Scotland and England. On March 22, 1622, … Continue reading Historical Astronomers in Context Continue reading

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Seasons, Solstices and Equinoxes

    What causes the seasons?  Not only is this asked on page 32 of Chapter 2, but it is often asked by many individuals residing on Earth.  However, a surprisingly few number of people actually know.  Seasons occur because the title of Earth’s axis causes sunlight to fall differently on Earth at different times … Continue reading Seasons, Solstices and Equinoxes Continue reading

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Onward to the Super Bowl!  Fly Eagles Fly! Continue reading

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