Galileo-style Uranus Tour (2003) | WIRED.
Uranus deserves more attention. There’s something weird about its insides – it should be radiating more heat than it does, but something deep inside keeps it bottled up. Plus its moons are fascinating. An Orbiter, as Dave Portree ably discusses, should be able to use the moons for orbit changes just like the “Galileo” mission did during its 1995-2003 sojourn at Jupiter.
The paper outlining the mission is available here: Feasibility of a Galileo-Style Tour of the Uranian Satellites
Next Big Future: Aragoscope is space telescope system that could achieve 1000 times higher resolution than Hubble Telescope.
Hubble presently resolves Eris into a ~1 pixel wide image (Eris is 2,326 km across and Hubble resolves a spot 1,875 km wide at Eris’s distance), so an Aragoscope would image Eris to a ~1,000 pixel image – thus ~2 km/pixel resolution. Unlike Pluto, there’s no “New Horizons” winging its way to image Eris.
We could scan the moons of Jupiter at better than Galileo resolution. At just 4 AU, when closest to Earth, we’d see Europa to the ~0.1 km/pixel level. What does that mean? This is Europa at 1 miles (1.6 km) per pixel…
The moons of Uranus and Neptune would be imaged to the ~same level as the above image of Europa. What’s more they can be studied at leisure, rather than the frantic scramble of a high speed flyby.
Mars can be monitored at the 10 metre/pixel level. Not as good as the rovers on the ground, but a decent bird’s-eye view.
Finally the mysterious possible planets out beyond Neptune, at ~200 to ~250 AU, would be resolved in considerable detail – but first we have to find them.
Scientists find FISH beneath 2,400ft-thick Antarctic ice sheet | Daily Mail Online.
Complex life can be sustain even when under thick ice. In all likelihood they’re getting oxygen from gas dissolved in the ice, which is a direct parallel to the convecting ice and oxidants on (under?) Europa.
Alien DUST found at the bottom of the Earth’s ocean | Daily Mail Online.
The punchline is that regular Supernova may not be sufficient to make the heavier elements, like Uranium and Thorium (U & T), that provide much of Earth’s, and other Solar System objects, their long term radiogenic warming. Of course there’s still Potassium 40 (K-40) in other parts of the Galaxy, but if most Supernova debris contains 1% the expect U & T then there’s something different about the supernova that seeded our Solar System with its radioactive isotopes.
Dawn’s Greatest Glimpse Yet of Ceres Hints at Startling Revelations Soon to Come « AmericaSpace.
As “Dawn” crawls towards Ceres, the camera views become clearer and clearer. Hints of craters and that Spot! What revelations are coming?
A mathematical discussion of accelerated motion in the relativistic universe. Has some peculiar features when the acceleration is constant – in other discussions this is called the Rindler space-time. The Rindler Horizon forms behind the accelerating observer and strangeness can ensue… at least strange to our Earth-bound eyes.
ALMA image of HL Tau and it’s protoplanetary disk. Notice the cleared lanes, probably where planets have cleared out the dust-gas-planetesimals. Source