The beautiful Geminid meteor shower, which happens annually when the earth encounters debris from the extinct comet 3200 Phaethon, lit up the sky this past weekend. It was visible to stargazers across the globe, especially those in the Northern Hemisphere. Luckily for us, plenty of talented photographers took to Instagram to share what they saw!
Did you get a chance to step outside last night/early this morning to look at the blood moon? This was the first full lunar eclipse in three years, and the first in a series of four that will conclude in September 2015. the Earth will begin to position itself between the sun and the moon for the first of a series of four total eclipses to conclude in September 2015. As for the red hue? As CNN explains it, “In a total lunar eclipse, the full moon turns a coppery red as it passes into Earth’s shadow. During the process, the moon’s bright glow dims, taking on a red hue because of shimmers of sunlight and sunsets seeping through the Earth’s atmosphere.” Gorgeous. Click through for a few more photos. [CNN] [Photos: Getty Images]
“Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey,” Neil deGrasse Tyson’s reboot of Carl Sagan’s 1980s’ television documentary series, “Cosmos: A Personal Voyage,” is, so far, one of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring shows I’ve ever watched. (Seriously, watching it I was more excited and moved than this little girl.) Jetting around in Tyson’s “Ship of the Imagination” — “free from the shackles of space and time” — “Cosmos” explores the origins of the universe and life itself, explained in a way that is both comprehensible and absolutely mind-blowing, alongside visuals that stun. As Tyson has said, “The universe is in us … Many people look up at the sky and they feel small. But I feel big. Because my atoms came from those stars.” Click on for just 15 of the most profound quotes from “Cosmos” first two episodes and then actually watch them in full on Hulu. You won’t regret it. Keep reading »
Last week, NASA scientists predicted that they would discover Earth’s universal twin within a year. Well, they made good on that promise and way early. Wednesday, the Kepler telescope found KOI, short for Kepler Object Interest, a very promising candidate for Earth twindom. Not the name I would have chosen, but I’m not complaining. We have a twin!
There are some minor differences between Earth and KOI. (It’s more of a fraternal twin than an identical one.) While it has a sun that it orbits, far away enough to be fit for human life, it’s about 50 percent larger than Earth and circles its sun in about 242 days instead of 365. Yikes, that means you would age faster. Keep reading »
Oh hey, what’s happening in space? Nothing maj, except astronomers discovered a planet made of SOLID DIAMONDS! Go and get that planet, girl! No, for real, before Mariah Carey finds a way to blast Nick Cannon off in a spaceship to go diamond mining for her, the planet is around 4,000 light years away and consists of pure carbon hardened into a crystalline pattern. It’s apparently stuck inside a tight orbit around a distant star. “The evolutionary history and amazing density of the planet all suggest it is comprised of carbon — i.e. a massive diamond orbiting a neutron star every two hours in an orbit so tight it would fit inside our own Sun,” said Matthew Bailes of Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne. The tiny planet makes its orbit every two hours or so, and has been found to be around the same mass as Jupiter, but around 20 times as dense. So think tiny, compact and full o’ glittering diamonds. And oh yeah, way, way out of reach. [Reuters] Keep reading »