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Studies Indicate Galaxy’s Supermassive Black Hole Dictates Star Formation

By on Jan 2, 2018 in Galaxies | 0 comments

Formation of stars is one of the most important aspects when it comes to life in the universe as well as the variety of heavy elements available in the universe. Without star formation we wouldn’t be here nor would elements like gold. Astronomers discovered that large galaxies with supermassive black holes have a lot to do with whether more stars will form or not.   A supermassive black hole has numerous effects like the gravitational effect on stars and sometimes powering the immense radiation from an active galactic nucleus (AGN). What’s fascinating is the energy flowing into the AGN is thought to turn off star formation. Why? This happens because the gas gets heated and dispelled as a result which means it doesn’t get to condense into stars by cooling down. Scientists have actually thrown this theory around for quite a while now but never had any conclusive...

10 Amazing Discoveries that Changed Astronomy in 2017

By on Dec 21, 2017 in List Post | 0 comments

We’re at the tail-end of 2017 and what a year for astronomy and space science! I’m excited to talk about ten astronomy discoveries that help shape and change 2017. I will organize these by discovery date. Let’s jump right to it!   1) NASA and European Astronomers Discover 7 Earth-Size Planets Orbiting Red Dwarf Star The search for life is one of the most critical questions for astronomy and even humanity. Are we alone in the universe or are there other life forms, even intelligent ones? Well in February of 2017, NASA and European astronomers discovered seven planets that may support life. These seven planets orbit a red dwarf, a star much smaller and cooler than ours, called TRAPPIST-1. The size of this star is only slightly larger than our gas giant Jupiter. It’s located 39.5 light-years away from Earth. That means if we had the technology to travel at the...

Cassini Grande Finale: A Spacecraft We’ll Never Forget (Presentation)

By on Sep 14, 2017 in NASA Missions | 0 comments

It’s been two amazing decades with Cassini-Huygens spacecraft. The first mission to orbit Saturn and the first mission to land on an exo-moon. The photos that Cassini brought back alone are priceless. I put together a presentation for a lunch n learn for Cassini’s Grande Finale. We will go over what the mission was, why it was important as well as what did we learn from it. I hope you enjoy this 45-minute presentation. I apologize for any inconvenience on the audio quality near the end but it does capture my entire presentation. Here are the slides if you’re interested....

NASA Invests in 22 Exploration Concepts that will Ignite the Future

By on Apr 16, 2017 in NASA News | 0 comments

NASA knows that humankind has many problems to face in the future. In fact today we not only have to worry about climate change and human problems but we still haven’t figured out or tested any solutions to prevent an asteroid collision. However, don’t fret we’re investing in these 22 awesome exploration concepts that will help us solve for some of these problems. So let’s jump into what these are. I should mention that NASA has broken these investments up in two phases. We’ll go over in what each phase is exactly along with what these technologies can do as well. It will still take at least 10 years of development and testing before NASA can implement these into any mission but that’s how hard space is sometimes. It can be really easy to have failures and issues which is why you test test and test again. Space can be unforgiving if anything goes...

Carnival of Space 505: Best Weekly Space Stories

By on Apr 14, 2017 in Carnival of Space | 0 comments

Hello space fans and welcome to another edition of Carnival of Space! If you’re unfamiliar with this awesome space community driven literature then let me give you a break down. The Carnival of Space is where a space blogger from the Universe Today community will round up all the latest and greatest space stories for the week so you don’t have to scour the web for the good stuff. We have a great lineup this week so let’s blast off.   Hubble Takes Advantage Of Opposition To Snap Jupiter – Universe Today Hubble Space Telescope took a fantastic opportunity of Jupiter coming in opposition with Earth. This allowed Hubble to take some amazing shots of Jupiter. Check out Universe Today’s wonderful article on this where you can get all the great detail on the features of Jupiter. Trust me you’ll want to read the cool little details that most people...

Astronomers Discover Surprising New Class of X-Ray Pulsating Stars

By on Mar 26, 2017 in Variable Stars | 0 comments

Pulsating stars have been one of the most intriguing objects in our universe and provide insightful value to how we can map out distances. Astronomers discover a new class of X-ray variable stars that have been in question for the last decade. The team that discovered this is from Canada and the United States. It includes universities such as Villanova, University of Colorado, Harvard, University of Texas, and University of Toronto. To understand why this discovery is amazing we should clear out some of the main pieces here. For one variable stars. These are stars that change in brightness as seen from Earth. However, variable stars have their own sub-classifications and this discovery is specifically looking at Cepheid variable stars. These stars have periodic changes in brightness and pulsates radially like a cosmic lighthouse. These are very important to astronomers because we use...

How the Trip to Titan Changed Everything

By on Mar 7, 2017 in Solar System | 0 comments

There are many missions and discoveries that have truly reshaped the way we think about the planets, stars, solar system and beyond. However, the Cassini-Huygens mission is arguably one of the most important missions for humankind. A moon that truly opened our eyes is Titan. It’s Saturn’s largest moon and the only moon in our solar system to have a dense atmosphere. Many people are familiar with our missions to the Moon or Mars but not everyone is familiar with the mission to Titan. We’ll take a look at the story of getting to Titan and its challenges as well as what we were expecting vs. what was found when we took a closer look at Titan.   Finding a Way to Get to Titan Together Getting to Titan wasn’t going to be easy and NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) were already thinking about how to accomplish this in 1982. Remember, Saturn is about 10 AU or...

How Direct Fusion Drive (DFD) will Revolutionize Space Travel

By on Oct 1, 2016 in Space Technology | 3 comments

Direct Fusion Drive (DFD) could possibly pave the way for traveling in space and to planets. Sometimes I daydream and wish we could somehow speed up the process of getting to planets. It’s a very hard problem and we’re still testing out various solutions for different situations. History shows that humans have planned to go to the moon and beyond since the Apollo program in the early 1970’s. During that time the most advanced propulsion engines were nuclear fission thermal rockets. However, these rocks barely got any use as it was tested a handful of times before the Apollo program was ended. There is a fantastic and nostalgic video for you NASA and space fans on the subject of nuclear thermal rockets. But as science and technology move forward we learn more about space as well as the obstacles it presents. For example, in recent studies where radiation data was...