Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Solar Storms And Life

A new study suggests super storms on the young Sun may have warmed the early Earth enough to allow life to rise.

Radiation from such storms would also have changed the chemistry of Earth's atmosphere, sparking complex chemical reactions that could have led to life.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Radiating Fossils

Two new studies indicate that radiation, principally from the Sun and from gamma cosmic rays, would quickly destroy fossils on Mars and Jupiter's moon, Europa.

To find evidence of past life on either of those worlds, therefore, might require drilling meters beneath the surface.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Still Looking

So far, humans have found roughly 3,200 planets orbiting other stars.  Nome are twins of Earth.

If not twins, a few are fairly close cousins, however, and astronomers are confident they will eventually find siblings.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Finding Martian Life

Ellen Stofan, NASA's chief scientist and herself a geologist, says finding evidence of life on Mars, if it exists, will require putting humans on the Red Planet.

She argues that finding evidence of microbial life is too demanding, and the question of extraterrestrial life too important, to be left to robots.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Tsunamis On Mars

Some researchers are suggesting that early Mars not only had liquid water oceans, but also at least two giant tsunamis.

They theorize the tsunamis were caused by meteor strikes.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Perspective

Wal-Mart announced revenues last quarter of nearly $116 billion.

The proposed NASA budget for the next fiscal year is roughly $19 billion.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Apollo 10

Fifty-seven years ago this week, Apollo 10 flew to the Moon as a dress rehearsal for the first lunar landing.

By flying a clean mission, Tom Stafford, Gene Cernan, and John Young opened the way to the triumph of Apollo 11.