The scorching hot surface of Mercury – our sun’s innermost planet – seems an unlikely place to find ice. But a new study suggests otherwise.
Brown researchers have found new evidence of ice sheets in permanently shadowed craters near the north pole of Mercury. Image via Head lab / Brown University.
Planetary researchers say a large sedimentary basin, named Aeolis Dorsa, contains some of the planet’s most spectacular and densely packed river deposits.
In this image, the dotted white arrow points to curved strata recording point bar growth and river migration. The boundaries of ancient valley walls are defined by textural and albedo changes and are also associated with lateral river migration. Stacked above the point bars and completely confined within the dotted white and black lines are topographically inverted river deposits outcropping as ridges (e.g., black arrow). In places (e.g., south of the dotted white arrow), the ridges run against the dotted boundaries, suggesting flow was once redirected along a valley wall. Image via GSA.
Autumn is connected in Chinese thought with the direction west, considered to be the direction of dreams and visions.
Talk about dedication to science! This biologist stuck his arm into an eel tank – 10 times – to get an accurate measure of an eel’s shock. He said it felt “like touching a horse fence.”
A strikingly beautiful view of a delicate bubble of expelled material around the exotic red star U Antliae helps astronomers understand how stars evolve during the later stages of their life-cycles.
This image was created from ALMA data on the unusual red carbon star U Antliae and its surrounding shell of material. The colours show the motion of the glowing material in the shell along the line of sight to the Earth. Blue material lies between us and the central star, and is moving towards us. Red material around the edge is moving away from the star, but not towards the Earth. For clarity this view does not include the material on the far side of the star, which is receding from us in a symmetrical manner.
Which one would you choose?
‘Bold eagle’: Finalist 2017, Animal Portraits After several days of constant rain, the bald eagle was soaked to the skin. Named after its conspicuous but fully-feathered white head (bald derives from an old word for white), it is an opportunist, eating various prey – captured, scavenged or stolen – with a preference for fish. At Dutch Harbor on Amaknak Island in Alaska, USA, bald eagles gather to take advantage of the fishing industry’s leftovers. Used to people, the birds are bold. ‘I lay on my belly on the beach surrounded by eagles,’ says Klaus. ‘I got to know individuals, and they got to trust me.’ Photo by Klaus Nigge.
Mars emerged before dawn last week, to meet Mercury below bright Venus. And then the moon passed through. Thanks to all who submitted photos!
Researchers spent 5 years studying dust devils in earthly deserts. They said their research has implications for climate and weather on both Earth and Mars and for human health.
Sampling of a dust devil during field campaign ‘Morocco 2016’.
Long-period comet C/2017 O1 – a visitor from the Oort Comet Cloud – is becoming visible in small telescopes and binoculars. This post includes charts that can help you find it.
Greg Hogan in Kathleen, Georgia caught the comet near the Pleiades star cluster - aka the Seven Sisters - on the morning of September 18, 2017.