Water found on Ceres

An artistic representation of Ceres spewing out water vapour.

An artistic representation of Ceres spewing out water vapour.

 

Ceres was first classified as an asteroid but upgraded its status to dwarf planet recently.  For about 30 years scientists have speculated about whether or not Ceres contains water.  Well finally they have their answer.

Ceres is the dwarf planet and largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.  When it was first discovered it was only thought to be a massive asteroid.  But when scientists discovered that Ceres is shaped like a sphere and that it might have a silicate core and icy exterior its status changed from asteroid to dwarf planet in 2008.  Now that scientists have discovered evidence of water on Ceres it is even more planet-like.

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Jelly Doughnut Mystery Rock Appears on Mars

Images of before and after the rock

Images of before and after the rock

The Mars Rover Opportunity must have thought “at last, after 10 years of hard work I finally get rewarded for my efforts”.  This wasn’t the case.  In fact, Opportunity had discovered some more work for it to do.  What looks like a jelly doughnut was in fact a rock, something which is seen a lot on Mars but this one is unique.

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Great Software for Various Space and Astronomy Related Research

Image for space and research Image for space and researchImage for space and research

Astronomy

It is always great to have some kind of astronomy application when you are quite the astronomer.  It can be either for research or just for your own leisure.

Observation Manager

Observation Manager will run on any platform that supports Java 1.4 or higher and it is a logbook for astronomical observations.  Any of your observations can be noted and saved for future use.  This can be useful if you only get the chance to do stargazing once every few weeks.  The catalogues in Observation Manager are already categorized for ease of use.

XEphem

Xephem is a very complicated application but once you master it you won’t want to use anything else.  It is a highly developed astronomy application with a whole lot of data and information available to the user.  There is information on just about everything in the solar system.

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ALH84001 and other famous Meteorites

ALH84001

A piece of the ALH84001 meteorite

It is 4 billion years old and it travelled and landed safely on Earth about 13 000 years ago.  The meteorite known as ALH84001 was discovered in the Allan Hills region of Antarctica in the year 1984.  The geologists who picked it up at the time didn’t think much of the meteorite.  It was only after 10 years of studying the rock that researchers realized that this was a specimen from Mars.

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