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Solar System in an amazing 360 video

The guys at Crash Course have created an amazing 360 video animation where we can learn more about our solar system. What’s a 360 degree video, you ask? It is a video in which you can rotate around and see other perspective while the video is still running.

If movies would have such a 360 degree video, then you may be able to see the cameras rolling while the actors do their thing. Just kidding. A great concept applied to a science video. Neat.

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Introductory concepts: science based medicine, evolutionary biology, information history, astronomy

Yes, another week-end has passed and I’ve spent quite some time following courses and documentaries. What a life! In the video from above you will learn what science based medicine is and why is it important. Knowing a couple of basic concepts from the world of medicine, the true one, not the one which heals you with lies, is a must these days. Why? Because even some doctors have turned on medicine and are against vaccinations. Those fools.

Now, in regards to evolution, there is evolutionary biology, which explains how we reached the idea of evolution and what proof is there for such claims. Check the video from below to see a short history of evolutionary biology a well established science field nowadays:

Want to know how we developed techniques to store information throughout the time and how these advancements have, in turn, helped us evolve and build the society we now have? Check the video from below. You will see how we moved passed scrolls in the old ages and then we came back to scrolls when we are scrolling on websites on the internet:

Learn, from ILectureOnline, why the telescopes are so important for astronomers. At first there were the refractive telescopes, which used lenses, and now we are reflexive telescopes, which use reflective mirrors to channel more light than eve. Learn about focal points, basic optics, interferometry and how to calculate angular resolution:

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ESOcast 78: what is airglow and why do we see so much of it in the Paranal, Chile area?

The ESOcast 78 is here. ESO has a series of video podcasts in which they explain a ton of things from what a telescope if, to how a black hole works. In this newest ESOcast we learn about the airglow, the coloured light which can be seen at night.

In the last decades the airglow can be seen even more and more in the Paranal desert of Chile where ESO has a number of astronomical observatories like NTT, VLT and the AMLA microwave telescope.

Airglow has color red at about 100 km altitude and is greenish from 150-300 altitude. The color is given off by the oxygen and nitrogen molecules from the air after they have been in contact with UV light from the Sun during the day. Because of the UV light the oxygen and nitrogen molecules are broken apart and at night they try to form new bonds and thus release the red and green light from their atoms.

A nice thing to see, although it hinders astronomers from seeing distant stars.

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The story of Rosetta and comet 67P is continuing

The guys at ESA have created a series of nice animations to depict the Rosetta mission with its Philae comet lander. As you already know the Philae lander was not able to hold on to a given spot on the comet 67P and it bounced a couple of times on it.

Fortunately the lander still works and was able to send over images and data to the Rosetta probe. The probe is also accompanying the comet on its journey and it is the first mission to have ever landed a robot on a comet and to also follow that comet around.

Here are some images from comet 67P (via ESA Flickr + Flickr Forum):


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How we figured out that Earth goes around the Sun?

Astronomy. That is how. The movements of celestial bodies on the sky were not going according to the predictions of a geocentric model, a model in which Earth was at the center, and thus astronomers had to accept the fact that Earth revolves around the Sun ie the theory of heliocentrism.

Now we can see this happening by using the satellites and by using our state of the art telescopes and updated laws of physics. Science is great.

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No, there are no aliens [yet]

The news about an alien megastructure surrounding star KIC 8462852 have been all the rage these days. But, as in the case of BICEP2 discovery, it is better to simply be cautious and not imply that there have been discovered structures like that. Yet.

Hank Green explains why there is more chance to simply have a ton of debris from comets as opposed to simply think that there is a megastructure in there. The video from above explains all you need to know about KIC 84262852.

Not aliens yet.

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Heart Sun’s neutrino heartbeat

The researchers based in Gran Sasso National Laboratory near L’Aquila, Italy, about 1 kilometer into the ground, were able, even in 2007 to detect some of the neutrinos from the Sun, essentially confirming that the theorized fusion reactions, which include the presence of berilium, are correct.

Science20 reported at that time about Sun’s neutrino heart beat. The researchers were able to detect low level neutrinos in the range of 0.862 MeV. They used the Borexino detector to get a glimpse into the universe of these tiny neutrinos.

Sun’s neutrino heartbeats are about 2-3 pe hour. Watch the timer in the video from above.


The Moon: is has a tail and we would have a catastrophic planet without it

The Moon has a tail made up of sodium atoms very thinly dispersed throughout the small Moon exosphere. Moons atmosphere, called exosphere, is so rare that when it is full Moon and it is between us and the Sun, its atmosphere gets pushed around towards the Earth. This way we will be able to reside inside Moon’s tail.

You can read more here.

Also, without the Moon we would have a day that would be only 6-8 hours and the axial tilt would be much greater:

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The planet with two suns

Kepled 16b is a planet with two suns. Such a planet is called circumbinary and it located at 200 light-years from us. Kepler 16b is a big planet and orbits the tow suns, which in turn orbit each other at close proximity.

Kepler 16 is the system. In it Kepler 16A is the big star, then Kepler 16B is the small star and Kepler 16b is the planet. Upper case letters like B, for stars, and lowercase letters, like b, for planets.

Kepler 16b has a surface temperature of about -100 degrees Celsius and is about the size of Saturn, as it is a gas Giant. It has a gravity 1.5 times the one we have here.

Yup, the Universe has lots of surprises.


Does the Sun have siblings?

It is believed that yes, the Sun does have siblings, but they’re hard to locate. Some believe one of the siblings is 100 light-years away, in the Hercules constellation. It seems that the Sun came from a group of several hundred stars and then it simply went away.

Since the Sun has a specific combination of elements, it is believed that the siblings should have about the same combination of elements in them. Searching among billions and billions of stars is hard, but the astronomers will likely find many siblings of Sun’s.

Why do we care so much about Sun’s siblings? Since its siblings are about its age we might expect some of them to have planets much like our own. Maybe there is life out there and we may find our galactic relatives.

In any ways, when we will meet the ET we will mark that as the biggest thing in our modern history. Will we be nice to them or vice-versa?