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Author Archives: terranojm
On Saturday, May 5, NASA is launching its newest Mars lander. The Mars InSight lander is set to arrive at Mars in November. This spacecraft is a first of its kind because it will be launched from the West Coast unlike other launches to Mars. More importantly, however, this lander is unique because it will … Continue reading “Farewell, InSight Lander!” Continue reading → Continue reading
Hypoliths are photosynthetic bacteria that inhabit the desert. Despite the Namib desert in Namibia being one of the most extreme environments on Earth, hypoliths thrive under quartz rock under these harsh conditions. This desert can go years without rain and it is subject to constant solar radiation and scorching heat. With very little water and … Continue reading “Enter The Hypolith” Continue reading → Continue reading
The six most common elements found in living organisms on Earth are carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, sulfur, oxygen, and phosphorus. Recently, astronomers have been attempting to look more into the origins of phosphorus in the universe, and through observations of the Crab Nebula, they found that the amount and distribution of phosphorus in the Milky Way … Continue reading “Extraterrestrial Life Becomes Slightly Less Likely” Continue reading → Continue reading
Kuiper Belt Objects are unique in that they have different compositions than most asteroids and different orbits than most comets. This has led astronomers to contemplate the identity of Kuiper Belt Objects. Surprisingly, the answer isn’t so clear. Asteroids are mostly composed of rock while comets are mostly composed of rock and ice. Most Kuiper … Continue reading “Kuiper Belt Objects…What Are They?” Continue reading → Continue reading
It’s no secret that the universe is growing. However, research leads us to believe that our own Milky Way Galaxy is growing as well. In fact, our galaxy exhibits cannibalistic behavior, absorbing material from the dwarf galaxies surrounding it. We know that the chemical makeup in the central bulge of our galaxy differs from the … Continue reading “A Greedy, Gluttonous Galaxy” Continue reading → Continue reading
The European Southern Observatory began construction of the European-Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) back in 2014. This telescope is on track to be the world’s largest optical and infrared telescope by the time it is completed in 2024, thus living up to its name. The E-ELT will include a main mirror that is 128 feet in … Continue reading “European-Extremely Large Telescope” Continue reading → Continue reading
Galileo Galilei made many important contributions to astronomy during his lifetime. He created his own increasingly powerful telescopes. He discovered that the Moon’s surface wasn’t smooth, as it had been previously thought. He observed four moons revolving around Jupiter. He discovered many more stars with his telescopic observations. He found that Venus has phases just … Continue reading “Historical Astronomers in Context” Continue reading → Continue reading
The theory of special relativity tells us that there is an absolute speed limit in the universe, that being the speed of light. At a speed of about 300,000 km/s, light takes only one second to travel to the Moon from Earth and eight minutes to travel to the Sun from Earth. This speed is … Continue reading “Putting the speed of light into perspective” Continue reading → Continue reading
Greetings fellow astronomers! I look forward to a fun-filled semester blogging with you all!
Below is a picture of me (the left), my brother, and our friends when we visited New York City!
Are you curious about what’s out there in our universe? Have you been wanting to do your own astronomical research? Has it been a dream of yours to discover a new planet? Fear no more! A team of astronomers led by MIT and the Carnegie Institution for Science is now giving the public the opportunity … Continue reading “Want to discover a new planet?”Continue reading → Continue reading