Renowned scientist Stephen Hawking says we have 1000 years left on Earth before all the planet’s resources will be used up. Laci looks at the problems we’ll face and Hawking’s solution to saving humanity.
Image: The artist’s concept depicts Kepler-62e, a super-Earth planet in the habitable zone of a star smaller and cooler than the sun, located about 1,200 light-years from Earth in the constellation Lyra. Image released April 18, 2013.
With more and more Earth-like alien planets being discovered around the galaxy, humanity should now start planning out the next steps in its hunt for far-flung alien life, researchers say.
On Thursday (April 18), scientists announced the discovery of three more potentially habitable exoplanets — Kepler-62e, Kepler-62f and Kepler-69c — further suggesting that the cosmos is jam-packed with worlds capable of supporting life as we know it.
So the time is right to get the ball rolling beyond mere discovery to the detailed study and characterization of promising alien planets, researchers said — a task that will require new and more powerful instruments. [Habitable Super-Earths Ideal for Life (Gallery)]
“You really want to collect the light from these planets, to figure out — take the data, not just infer —whether or not there’s water, and even signs of life, on these planets,” Lisa Kaltenegger of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, who was part of the team that discovered Kepler-62e and f, said during a press conference Thursday
As their names suggest, the three newfound planets were discovered by NASA’s prolific Kepler space telescope, which has spotted more than 2,700 potential alien worlds since its March 2009 launch. Just 122 have been confirmed to date, but mission scientists expect more than 90 percent will end up being the real deal.
The $600 million Kepler mission was designed to determine how common Earth-like planets are around the Milky Way galaxy. Its observations so far suggest our home planet may not be so special.
Im not going to write a lengthy post on the great man, and his life although, I want to tell the story of his 72nd birthday in 1951. Following an event at Princeton, a slew of reporters were taking photographs of Einstein, similar to paparazzi swarming celebrities in Los Angeles. Einstein, having smiled for many photographs already and showing his love for humor, stuck out his tongue at one photographer.
The photograph was taken by UPI photographer Arthur Sasse on March 14, 1951, following an event at Princeton to honor Einstein on his 72nd birthday. While Sasse tried mightily to convince the physicist to smile for the camera, the reaction he received, recorded forever on film, was humorously unexpected! Einstein was so amused by the image that he contacted UPI and requested nine prints for his personal use.
Einstein was a simple man, he said “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” He loved music, especially Mozart, he loved a good joke, And he loved pondering the Universe, sock-less.. He was without a doubt one of the greatest minds to grace this Earth.
“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction.” - Albert Einstein
Inside the nebula lies an open cluster of bright young stars designated NGC 2244. These stars formed about four million years ago from the nebular material and their stellar winds are clearing a hole in the nebula’s center, insulated by a layer of dust and hot gas.
Ultraviolet light from the hot cluster stars causes the surrounding nebula to glow. The Rosette Nebula spans about 100 light-years across, lies about 5000 light-years away, and can be seen with a small telescope towards the constellation of the Unicorn (Monoceros). [**]
Why do some spiral galaxies have a ring around the center? First and foremost, M95 is one of the closer examples of a big and beautiful barred spiral galaxy. Visible in the above recent image from the CFHT telescope in Hawaii, USA, are sprawling spiral arms delineate by open clusters of bright blue stars, lanes of dark dust, the diffuse glow of billions of faint stars, and a short bar across the galaxy center. What intrigues many astronomers, however, is the circumnuclear ring around the galaxy center visible just outside the central bar. Recent images by the Chandra X-ray Observatory have shown that X-ray light surrounding the ring is likely emission from recent supernovas. Although the long term stability of the ring remains a topic of research, recent observations indicate its present brightness is at least enhanced by transient bursts of star formation. M95, also known as NGC 3351, spans about 50,000 light-years and can be seen with a small telescope toward the constellation of the Lion (Leo).
The Carina Nebula is an immense landscape of dark dust columns silhouetted against glowing gas clouds, which lies about 7,500 light-years away. The nebula, almost 500 trillion kilometres wide, is both lit and sculpted by the intense radiation of its brilliant young stars.