SAMPLE ALL THE FLAVORS!Increasingly, Vanderbilt instructors are incorporating blogs into their course design. Course Blogs at Vanderbilt is a mash-up of live feeds representing a wide variety of Vanderbilt courses that use blogging to help students reflect on, comment about, and introduce new ideas to course material. Click on the blog title to view the originating course blog. You can also click on the Participating Blogs tab for links to each blog.
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Author Archives: chiefkeith7
The Ancient Egyptians cared a great deal about astronomy. Probably too much, in fact. According to their beliefs, the movements of the planets and stars played a role in the annual flooding of the Nile river, and if you are an Ancient Egyptian, you will do just about anything to appease the Nile, and that … Continue reading Ancient Egyptian Astronomy → Continue reading → Continue reading
Astrobiology is becoming an increasingly discussed topic as new exoplanets are being found and we discover more about the worlds of our own solar system. Of course, for there to be life on other planets, it first needs to come into existence on its own through abiogenesis, or the creation of life through non-biological sources. … Continue reading Hydrothermal Vents: The Origin of Life? → Continue reading → Continue reading
Hundreds of millions of miles beyond the orbit of Neptune lurks one of the most intriguing objects in the Solar System, 50000 Quaoar. 50000 Quaoar is notable for multiple reasons, but the most apparent is its name. Quaoar is the name of the creator deity of the Tongva people in the Los Angeles Basin. The … Continue reading Probing the Mysteries of 50000 QUAOAR → Continue reading → Continue reading
The planet Mars was named after Mars, who to the Romans was the God of War. Its two moons, Phobos and Deimos, carry the names of the Greek Gods of fear (from which we get phobia) and terror, respectively. However, despite the naming scheme that seems to be inspired by Death Metal, Phobos and Deimos … Continue reading The Star-Crossed Fates of Phobos and Deimos → Continue reading → Continue reading
Despite being the sister planet of Earth, Venus is far from hospitable. Very far. Its atmospheric pressure at the surface is 92 times that of Earth’s, has an average surface temperature of 863 degrees Fahrenheit, and at higher latitudes sulphuric acid rains onto the surface. So what better force could there be to attempt to … Continue reading Venera, or the Soviets’ many attempts to reach Venus → Continue reading → Continue reading
As you know, neutron stars are the result massive stars (many times more massive the the sun) collapsing inward on themselves, leaving behind an extremely dense and energetic core. As you might expect these stars are extremely energetic — what you might not know is that sometimes as a result of the in-falling star materials … Continue reading MAGNETAR → Continue reading → Continue reading
Look at this man: This is none other than Sir Isaac Newton (Dec. 25, 1642 – Mar. 20, 1726), who, among other things, laid the foundation for modern mathematics and physics. Of course, Wikipedia has more information than you could ever possibly want to know about this mathematician-physicist-philosopher-alchemist, but this site is shorter and is … Continue reading Newton and Friends → Continue reading → Continue reading
You might find yourself looking at a (to-scale) diagram of the planets of the solar system (and Pluto), such as the following: and think to yourself “Wow, Pluto is so much farther out from the sun than the Earth is. The solar system is so massive!”. And while you would be correct in your statement, … Continue reading The OORT CLOUD and You → Continue reading → Continue reading