Astronomers are baffled by a newly-discovered galaxy that lacks dark matter

March 29, 2018 by  
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For the first time ever, scientists have identified a galaxy , NGC1052-DF2, that seems to lack the presence of dark matter.  For decades, scientists have believed that dark matter is a major aspect of any galaxy, which makes this discovery completely baffling. In an odd way, the new galaxy’s lack of dark matter may serve as evidence for the existence of it by demonstrating that there is much astronomers do not understand about such vast low-density galaxies. Although scientists have yet to directly observe dark matter, they believe it is out there due to the unusual motion of galaxies, which move as if under a greater gravitational force than that from the presence of regular matter. “These ultra-diffuse galaxies have a huge variety of properties,” study lead author Pieter van Dokkum told Gizmodo . “Some have a lot of dark matter , and some have no dark matter. There’s such an enormous range.” These observations have led scientists to believe that the universe may contain six times as much dark matter as ordinary matter . In a new study published in Nature , astronomers documented their observation that NGC1052-DF2 did not seem to rotate at all, indicating a lack of dark matter. “We could only derive an upper bound to the measured motion because it’s moving so slowly that our instrument couldn’t detect it,” said van Dokkum. Related: Scientists capture first ever image of dark matter web that connects galaxies The team also recently discovered a Dragonfly 44 with a similar structure to NGC1052-DF2, though its rotation suggests that the galaxy is composed of more than 99 percent dark matter. These observations were made possible by the Dragonfly Telephoto Array, a powerful telescope that shines a light on the universe’s secrets. This is exactly the sort of thing the Dragonfly instrument excels at discovering,” astrophysicist Sarah Tuttle told Gizmodo , “and confirming a low-mass galaxy without dark matter is an important step in understanding both galaxy formation and evolution, as well as cosmology.” Via Gizmodo Images via  Pieter van Dokkum and PBS

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Astronomers are baffled by a newly-discovered galaxy that lacks dark matter

Stephen Hawking reveals what existed before the Big Bang

March 7, 2018 by  
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In an interview with astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson , iconic physicist Stephen Hawking reveals what he believes existed prior to the Big Bang. “Nothing was around,” said Hawking, who fortunately elaborated on this point. “The Euclidean space-time is a closed surface without end, like the surface of the Earth,” said Hawking, referring to the four-dimensional conceptual model that incorporates the three dimensions of space with time. “One can regard imaginary and real time as beginning at the South Pole, which is a smooth point of space-time where the normal laws of physics hold. There is nothing south of the South Pole so there was nothing around before the Big Bang.” At least, there was nothing around that humans can currently experience or conceptualize. Since there is no way to measure time prior to the Big Bang , Hawking concludes that simply nothing existed prior to the Big Bang. In his interview with deGrasse Tyson, Hawking also spoke about the questions he would ask of Sir Isaac Newton, were he able to do so by some twist in space-time. “Is the solar system stable? And what happens to a star that cannot support itself against its own gravity ?” Hawking wondered. The stability of the solar system is of particular interest to residents of Earth. Related: Stephen Hawking: Humans must leave Earth within 100 years to survive Hawking has offered some pessimistic assessments of the near-future of our planet. He predicts that the Earth will become a ball of fire within the next 600 years while also warning humanity that we have less than a century to leave Earth before it becomes uninhabitable. He also warned about the existential dangers of artificial intelligence . “Computers can, in theory, emulate human intelligence, and exceed it,” he said in 2017 . “Success in creating effective AI, could be the biggest event in the history of our civilization. Or the worst. We just don’t know. So we cannot know if we will be infinitely helped by AI, or ignored by it and side-lined, or conceivably destroyed by it.” Via USA Today Images via Star Talk and NASA

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Stephen Hawking reveals what existed before the Big Bang

New periodic table sorts 3,700 known exoplanets into 18 categories

November 17, 2017 by  
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A new Periodic Table of Exoplanets guides scientists and science fans alike through over 3,700 known exoplanets, including those that may host life . To organize the thousands of worlds identified since the first exoplanet was discovered in 1992, astronomer Abel Méndez? of the Planetary Habitability Laboratory at the University of Puerto Rico created a chart that sorts the exoplanets into 18 distinct categories. “We know of over 3,700 planets around other stars. They are very diverse,” Méndez? said in an interview with Gizmodo . “We can roughly classify them by their size and temperature. Only warm planets with the right size, similar to Earth, might provide some of the conditions for extraterrestrial life.” At the most general level, exoplanets , or planets beyond our solar system, are categorized based on distance from the star around which they orbit and their temperature. This places them in one of three zones: Hot Zone, Warm Zone, or Cold Zone. The exoplanets are also distinguished by size and composition (rocky “terran” planets vs. gas giants like Neptune and Jupiter ). As in the actual periodic table, each exoplanet category has a number assigned to it, which indicates how many of a particular kind of planet have been discovered. Related: Scientists discover new Earth-like planet only 11 light years away According to the Periodic Table of Exoplanets, there are 53 known exoplanets with the appropriate size, temperature and features such as liquid water and a stable atmosphere to potentially host life as we know it. “Unfortunately, we don’t know yet if they also have the right amount of water (e.g. oceans ) or the right atmosphere for life too,” said Méndez?. As for the disproportionate number of hot planets on the Table, Méndez? explained that this is due to the relative ease of discovery for hot planets and not necessarily because there are more of them. At the top right corner of the Table, a chart indicates the number of stellar systems and the number of known exoplanets for each system. To Méndez, the possibilities are endless. “I’m overwhelmed by the number and diversity of planets in the stars around us. So many places to explore in our own Solar System , but much more is waiting for us beyond,” Méndez? told Gizmodo . “I won’t be very surprised by another planet with life, Earth is the example that this is possible. I will be more surprised by something we haven’t seen before.” Via Gizmodo Images via  Planetary Habitability Laboratory/University of Puerto Rico at Aricebo and NASA

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New periodic table sorts 3,700 known exoplanets into 18 categories

World’s largest telescope could show us the origins of the universe as soon as 2021

November 13, 2015 by  
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Atop the arid plateau of the Atacama Desert in Chile, the largest telescope in the world broke ground on Wednesday , beginning a project that will last six years and result in unprecedented views of the outer reaches of our solar system . The Giant Magellan Telescope is slated to be operational by 2021, when it will be capable of peering into the deepest of black holes, capturing images that are 10 times clearer than those sent back to Earth by the Hubble space telescope. Magellan represents not just a giant mirror surface, but also a giant leap forward in telescope technology. In fact, scientists believe Magellan just might reveal the origins of the universe. Read the rest of World’s largest telescope could show us the origins of the universe as soon as 2021

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World’s largest telescope could show us the origins of the universe as soon as 2021

Marvelous modular retreat goes off-grid in untamed Tasmania

November 13, 2015 by  
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Astronomers discover 11 ‘runaway’ galaxies that are fleeing into intergalactic space

April 29, 2015 by  
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A team of scientists from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and Moscow State University have spotted 11 runaway galaxies that have been flung out of their homes to wander the void of intergalactic space. While stars and even star clusters have been seen “escaping” galaxies, observing actual galaxies themselves is a whole other final frontier in astrophysics. Read the rest of Astronomers discover 11 ‘runaway’ galaxies that are fleeing into intergalactic space Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: astrophysics , harvard-smithsonian center for astrophysics , Moscow State University , runaway galaxies , runaway stars , star clusters

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Astronomers discover 11 ‘runaway’ galaxies that are fleeing into intergalactic space

How a team of students transformed a group home into a haven through Habilitative Design

April 29, 2015 by  
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In the 1960s, with the rising momentum of the Civil Rights movement and heightened awareness of the marginalization of the elderly and disabled, a new movement arose in the design community: Universal Design . This movement attempted to create designs that were accessible and inclusive to marginalized communities, by raising design standards to meet “universal” human standards of simplicity, ease, comfort, safety, and flexibility. But despite the idealistic intentions of Universal Design, specialized design services for differing populations are a growing need in today’s world. Case in point: a group-home for developmentally-disabled seniors with Alzheimer’s disease in Boston needed some very specific considerations to deal with the unique challenges facing the individuals living in the home. Dr. Dak Kopec, Architectural Psychologist and Director of the Boston Architectural College ’s (BAC) Master of Design Studies (MDS) has been pioneering the concept of Habilitative Design – design that meets specific individual needs that allow users to function to their highest capacity. Read on to learn how a team of students from the Design for Human Health course at BAC used the principals of Habilitative Design to meet patients’ specific needs. Read the rest of How a team of students transformed a group home into a haven through Habilitative Design Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: accessible design , Alzheimer’s disease , Architectural Psychologists and Director , BAC , BAC student design , Boston Architectural College , design for disabilities , design for disability , design for disabled seniors , Design for Health , design for human health , Dr. Dak Kopec , group home design , habilitative design , master of design studies , retirement home design , universal design

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How a team of students transformed a group home into a haven through Habilitative Design

Moon formed out of collision between young Earth and another planet, says new study

April 13, 2015 by  
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Ever looked up at the moon and wonder from whence that magnificent orb came? A new study has added momentum to the theory that the moon was formed from debris leftover from a collision between a young planet Earth and a rock the size of Mars—which were then both covered in meteorites—to create the cosmic nightlight we know and love today. Read the rest of Moon formed out of collision between young Earth and another planet, says new study Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: astrophysics , how was the moon formed , moon and earch composed of same material , moon composition , moon formation , moon formed by violent crash , solar system formation

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Moon formed out of collision between young Earth and another planet, says new study

Researchers Discover Solar Wind Energy Source that Could Revolutionize Nuclear Power

March 12, 2013 by  
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Solar Wind image from Shutterstock Using data collected by NASA ’s Wind solar probe, scientists have identified an energy source that causes solar winds to heat up and accelerate as they travel further away from their source. The discovery pinpoints ion cyclotron waves as the source of this strange phenomenon, which could revolutionize the nuclear energy industry Read the rest of Researchers Discover Solar Wind Energy Source that Could Revolutionize Nuclear Power Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “clean energy” , green technology , ion cyclotron waves , nasa solar power , nasa solar sail satellite , NASA Wind probe , nuclear energy , nuclear fusion reactors , Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics , Solar Power , solar probe , solar wind , solar wind energy

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Researchers Discover Solar Wind Energy Source that Could Revolutionize Nuclear Power

Northeastern University’s Seattle Campus on Track for LEED Platinum Rating

March 12, 2013 by  
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Read the rest of Northeastern University’s Seattle Campus on Track for LEED Platinum Rating Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , eco design , eco school , eco university , green architecture , Green Building , green design , green interiors , LEED platinum , leed platinum interior , Northeastern University , northeastern university seattle , perkins + will , perkins and will , perkins+will , satellite campus , Seattle , Sustainable Building , sustainable design

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Northeastern University’s Seattle Campus on Track for LEED Platinum Rating

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