With space technology increasing rapidly, we're learning more than ever about the planets in our galaxies. In the latest news, radar evidence shows that one of Saturn's moons is snowing. Yep, snow isn't only an Earth thing. And the weirder part? It's snow is falling onto the other moons of Saturn too. I had no idea that could even happen.
Have you ever wondered what the surface of an asteroid looks like? Well wonder no more, because the world has been blessed with pictures of Ryugu, a diamond-shaped asteroid the Japanese Space Agency has a spacecraft hanging around. The photographer is a little shoebox-sized probe named MASCOT (Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout) who bounced around the asteroid and snapped some pics for us. Thanks, buddy.
Burning Man is a one-of-a-kind festival that takes place in the desert in Nevada, attracting tens of thousand of people every year. It is well-known for its extraordinary art installations, outrageous costumes and interesting transportation methods. Maxar Technologies just released some satellite images of the festival on Twitter, and they're amazing. Not only is the festival 100% waste and money free, it's also a perfectly symmetrical miniature city that's build out of nothing. And we want to go. Real bad.
In the past few decades, technology has allowed us to live a reality that seemed like magic not so long ago. Talking to people on the other side of the planet? Easy. Flying in the air? Done. Man on the moon? Pfft. We did that in the sixties. Since science is getting more confident, and maybe a little egotistical, scientists have thought up a new scheme that sounds quite fantastical to us (although I guess that's what people thought before the internet existed). Scientists want to build an elevator that goes to the moon. Who knows, at the rate of technological advancement today, maybe it isn't so crazy. Lets wait a few years and see what happens.
Amazing what a mere collection of water and ice and a few rocks can turn into. Saturn's rings are one of the most incredible sights in the night sky, and in space overall. Though their make up is unremarkable, since the 1970s when the Pioneer and Voyager spacecraft visited the system and gave us our first close-up look.
What's more amazing is that unlike many other celestial bodies in our universe, that we need to physically reach in order to get a clear picture of, Saturn is close enough that we can get images like those below.
Colonization of the moon isn't too far off: plans for permanent lunar bases are already in motion, and the equipment for cheaply transporting people to the moon is in it's first stages of conception. But once we get there, humans will have to live inside buildings (or whatever the moon-equivalent will be called). So, in consideration of this, astronomers on the ISS mixed cement to see what zero-gravity cement would turn out like.
An enormous planet, also known as an 'exoplanet', was discovered that is 3 times the size of Jupiter. It's size though is not what makes it unique. Named 'HR 5183 B' by those who discovered it, the planet has truly one of the strangest planets so far, because of its orbit. It has an oblong orbit that gives it a truly unique path through space.
Scientists don't actually have data about the planet's entire orbit, because they have only been aware of the celestial bodies around it since 1990. With its long, arduous path through space, its not surprising we haven't gotten a look at the planet and how it moves, until now.
Mankind really had no idea what Pluto looked like until 2015, when the New Horizons spacecraft hurtled by the planet and took the first "close up" pictures of the distant dwarf-planet. The flyby gave us more than a few HD pictures however. Though the surface of Pluto is frigid, due to a balmy average temperature of -380 degrees Fahrenheit, there are a number of surprises to be found, above and below the surface.
Though downgraded to dwarf planet status, Pluto has been on the comeback trail of late. Many issues arose with the reclassification in 2006, including that only 424 of the 9000 members of the international organization in charge of making such decisions voted. In addition, immediately after the resolution, hundreds of planetary scientists petitioned against the changed classification. The problem began when the body changed the definition of what constitutes a planet, and due to Pluto lacking several of these features, it was demoted.
A recent mission to Pluto by NASA called New Horizons, recently gave us our closest and clearest look of Pluto and the surrounding planetary bodies in its area and orbit.
Sagitarius A*, denoted Sgr A*, is a supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way Galaxy. Suddenly, scientists noticed it was glowing 75 times brighter than normal. So much so, that they mistook it initially for a nearby star. The brightness was only momentary, as it returned back to its normal state. But the event has scientists excited and baffled.
By far the best views of Earth are not stunning sunsets artificially created by Snapchat or Instagram filters. It isn't on top of a mountain looking down at the world below. It is from space. And anyone who has been there will tell you, there's nothing that comes close. IF you're still skeptical, you need to check out these time-lapse visuals taken from the International Space Station by Astronaut Nick Hague.
Though the time-lapse is a huge blow for the Flat-Earth movement, because its pretty clear from the video, its round. Maybe we can go back to deciding if the dress is blue or yellow?