Earth set to get a new mini-moon – but astronomers are confused by its origin | Science | News

An object known as 2020 SO is heading towards Earth, and from October, it will be a ‘mini-moon’, which could stay in orbit of our planet until May next year. While we have The Moon, Earth regularly gets many small asteroids and meteors which caught in its orbit, which astronomers call ‘mini-moons’. The definition of a moon is any natural object which is caught in a planets gravitational pull. Now astronomers have detected a small, non-threatening object which is heading towards Earth, and could get caught in the gravity of…

Yellowstone volcano: ‘Sign of magma rushing to surface’ identified in chilling warning | Science | News

The caldera inside Yellowstone National Park is dubbed a supervolcano due to its capability to inflict untold catastrophe on a global scale in the event of a supereruption. It was formed during the last three big events – the Huckleberry Ridge eruption 2.1 million years ago, the Mesa Falls eruption 1.3 million years ago and the Lava Creek eruption approximately 630,000 years ago. Located below the states of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho, the area is constantly monitored by the USGS (United States Geological Survey) for signs that history could repeat…

Shark news: Scientists name ‘absolutely huge’ beast bigger than great white shark | Science | News

More than 400 species of shark roam the oceans, of which the dreaded great white is the deadliest. Thanks to Hollwyood blockbusters like Jaws, great whites have kept many people up at night – and for good reason. The great white is among the world’s biggest predators and is responsible for more attacks on humans than any other species of shark. According to the Florida Museum’s International Shark Attack File, great whites are apex predators with very few natural enemies. The museum said: “This species appears intelligent and inquisitive, and…

China’s hunt for ‘Holy Grail’ of Mars driving Space Race 2 with ‘no military boundaries’ | Science | News

NASA’s Perseverance Rover is on its way to the Red Planet and will land on February 18, 2021, as part of the US space agency’s Mars 2020 mission. It is the most advanced probe ever sent to Mars and will help to determine whether the planet was once habitable, before collecting key data to help NASA prepare for future human missions to the planet. But, echoing scenes of the Sixties, there is another global power also interested in the celestial body.  Unlike the Cold War though, which pushed the US…

Asteroid tracker: Earth’s gravity to impact 33-foot space rock’s path through space – NASA | Science | News

But unfortunately, even the most eagle-eyed amateur astronomers will not be able to see it unaided. NASA now knows the asteroid circles the Sun approximately every 372 days. This means 2020 SW’s orbit is only a week longer than our planet’s. Asteroid 2020 SW will attain a visual magnitude of 13.0 to 13.5, meaning the space rock is far too faint to be visible without some serious tech. But this is potentially within reach of astronomers using a 6 or 8-inch diameter telescopes. Source link

Shark bombshell: Mystery of world’s largest fish solved amid fear for ‘vulnerable’ species | Science | News

The whale shark is a slow-moving, filter-feeding carpet shark and the largest known extant fish species, with the biggest on record measuring 62 feet. They are found in open waters of the tropical oceans and are rarely found in temperatures below 21C. Studies looking at vertebral growth bands and the growth rates of free-swimming sharks have estimated a whale shark can live between 80 to 130 years, but scientists have struggled to accurately age them for years. But using the world’s radioactive legacy they now have a workable method that…

pace news: NASA reveals planetary pair collided to form Moon – ‘Giant Impact’ theory’ | Science | News

A landmark new NASA study has potentially answered an age-old question – what made the Moon? The groundbreaking study examined lunar rock, which added to evidence to the increasingly-mainstream theory hypothesising the Moon was created after planets smashed into a nascent, molten Earth eons ago. Dr Justin Simon, a NASA planetary scientist, said in a statement: “There is a huge difference between the modern elemental makeup of the Earth and Moon and we wanted to know why. “Now, we know that the Moon was very different from the start, and…

Alien life: Astronomers unveil ET-tracking device | Science | News

A key element of detecting evidence for alien life elsewhere in the Universe is the presence of a certain category of organic molecules. The search for alien life on Mars has traditionally focussed on gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry to separate and detect compounds associated with life. But, this technique has limitations in the analysis of certain molecules. This includes organic acids, particularly when water, minerals or salts are present in the sample. Source link

SpaceX launch LIVE stream: How to watch SpaceX launch 60 Starlink satellites today | Science | News

SpaceX has vowed to populate low-Earth orbit (LEO) with a constellation of satellites that can provide broadband to every corner of the globe. The project, dubbed Starlink, envisions a constellation of at least 12,000 operational satellites. But the constellation is bound to grow as SpaceX has explored the possibility of expanding Starlink by tens of thousands of satellites. However, the news has worried astronomers who fear the future of nighttime observations is at risk from large LEO constellations. And SpaceX is not the only company pursuing such lofty goals with…