Back to School Sale
Back to School Sale

Physics & Astronomy News

<p>A drawing illustrates the unusual topological landscape around a pair of features known as exceptional points (red dots), showing the emergence of a Fermi arc (pink line at center), and exotic polarization contours that form a Mobius-strip-like texture (top and bottom strips).</p>

<p>Courtesy: MIT</p>
New exotic phenomena seen in photonic crystals
Researchers observe, for the first time, topological effects unique to an 'open' system.
<p>ESA Astronauts training in terrestrial lava tubes in Lanzarote during the PANGEA 2016 course. Credit: ESA/L. Ricci</p>
Lava Tubes: Human Habitats on the Moon and Mars?
Lava tubes, underground caves created by volcanic activity, could provide protected habitats large enough to house streets on Mars or even towns on the Moon.

<p>PR Image heic1715a</p>

<p>The binary asteroid 288P (artist’s impression)</p>
Hubble Discovers a Unique Type of Object in the Solar System
Astronomers have observed the intriguing characteristics of an unusual type of object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
<p>Professor Kyoung Jin Choi (left) and Yeon Soo Jung (right) are examining a wearable TEG. As shown right, the output voltage of the W-STEG attached to clothes was measured to be 52.3 mV.</p>
Wearable Solar Thermoelectric Generator
UNIST has introduced a new advanced energy harvesting system, capable of generating electricity by simply being attached to clothes, windows, and outer walls of a building.

Observation confirms Einsteins general theory of relativity.
Astronomers have used NASA Hubble Space Telescope to repeat a century-old test of Einsteins general theory of relativity
Gravitational Wave Kicks Monster Black Hole Out of Galactic Core
Astronomers have uncovered a supermassive black hole that has been propelled out of the center of a distant galaxy by what could be the awesome power of gravitational waves.
Milky Way-like Galaxies in Early Universe Embedded in 'Super Halos'
By harnessing the extreme sensitivity of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), astronomers have directly observed a pair of Milky Way-like galaxies seen when the universe was only eight percent of its current age.

Science Facts

Neptune: The Basics

by NASA Headquarters and

: Image Courtesy NASA The eighth planet from the Sun, Neptune was the first planet located through mathematical predictions rather than through regular observations of the sky. When Uranus didn't travel exactly as astronomers expected it to, two mathematicians, working independently of each other, proposed the position and mass of another, as yet unknown planet that could account for Uranus' orbit. Although 'the establishment' ignored the predictions, a young astronomer decided to look for the predicted planet. Thus, Neptune was discovered in 1846. Seventeen days later, its largest moon, Triton, was also discovered. Nearly 4.5 billion kilometers from the Sun, Neptune orbits the Sun once every 165 years, and therefore it has not quite made a full circle around the Sun since it was discovered. It is invisible to the naked eye because of its extreme distance from Earth.

Interestingly, due to Pluto's unusual elliptical orbit, Neptune is actually the farthest planet from the Sun for a 20-year period out of every 248 Earth years. Voyager 2 captured this convergence of atmospheric features on Neptune. Neptune has the smallest diameter of our solar system's giant gas planets (including Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus), so called because they have no solid surfaces. Even so, its volume could hold nearly 60 Earths. Neptune's atmosphere extends to great depths, gradually merging into water and other 'melted ices' over a heavier, approximately Earth-sized liquid core. Neptune's rotational axis is tilted 30 degrees to the plane of its orbit around the Sun. Its seasons last an incredible 41 years. During the southern summer, the south pole is in constant sunlight for about 41 years, and in northern summer, the north pole is in constant sunlight for about 41 years.

Neptune's atmosphere is made up of hydrogen, helium, and methane, the last of these giving the planet its blue color (because methane absorbs red light). Despite its great distance from the Sun and lower energy input, Neptune's winds are three times stronger than Jupiter's and nine times stronger than Earth's. The planet has several rings of varying widths, confirmed by Voyager 2's observations in 1989. Neptune has 11 known moons, six of which were discovered by Voyager 2. The largest, Triton, orbits Neptune in a direction opposite to the planet's rotation direction, and is gradually getting closer until it will collide with the planet in about 10 to 100 million years, forming vast rings around Neptune that will rival or exceed Saturn's extensive ring system. Triton is the coldest body yet visited in our solar system; temperatures on its surface are about -235 C. Despite the deep freeze, Voyager 2 discovered great geysers of gaseous nitrogen on Triton.

Microbes In Space

There are creatures that were living on the Space Station before the first astronauts went inside. Astronauts found a few living on the Moon. Scientists believe they could even live on Mars. These cre ...
continue reading this fact

The Chandra Mission

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, which was launched and deployed by Space Shuttle Columbia on July 23, 1999, is the most sophisticated X-ray observatory built to date. Chandra is designed to observe ...
continue reading this fact
Venice as photographed by crew members aboard Space Station Alpha.
Astronaut Photography

Astronauts are trained in scientific observation of ecological, geological, geographic, oceanographic, environmental, and meteorological phenomena. They are also instructed in the use of photographic ...
continue reading this fact

Science Quote

'Arrows of hate have been shot at me too, but they have never hit me, because somehow they belonged to another world with which I have no connection whatsoever.'

Albert Einstein

All rights reserved. © Copyright '1995-'2018