Today’s stories range from Robotic cubes shapeshift in outer space to Inside Einstein’s mind to Researchers believe there may be a planet that could sustain life, in the vicinity of a dying sun, and much more. “The Galaxy Report” brings you news of space and science that has the capacity to provide clues to the mystery of our existence and adds a much needed cosmic perspective in our current Anthropocene Epoch.
Astronomers Find Two Giant Black Holes Spiraling Toward a Collision, reports NASA/JPL –“A supermassive black hole 9 billion light-years away appears to have a companion black hole orbiting around it. As the orbit shrinks, the pair gets closer to merging. The enormous duo – called a binary – circle one another about every two years.”
Robotic cubes shapeshift in outer space –Self-reconfiguring ElectroVoxels use embedded electromagnets to test applications for space exploration, reports MIT. “If faced with the choice of sending a swarm of full-sized, distinct robots to space, or a large crew of smaller robotic modules, you might want to enlist the latter. Modular robots, like those depicted in films such as “Big Hero 6,” hold a special type of promise for their self-assembling and reconfiguring abilities.”
Surveying the Universe with Rubin Observatory, reports AAS Nova. “Rubin Observatory and LSST are poised to revolutionize astronomy in ways both anticipated and unexpected; through repeated observations, LSST will enable us to detect and monitor transient events like supernovae and gamma-ray bursts, map the Milky Way, probe the nature of dark energy and dark matter, and expand our catalogs of solar system objects by more than an order of magnitude.”
Our universe may have a twin that runs backward in time, reports Paul Sutter for Space.com –An anti-universe running backwards in time could explain dark matter and cosmic inflation.
Parts of the Milky Way are much older than thought, study reveals–“The Milky Way’s thick disk is 2 billion years older than astronomers previously thought and likely formed barely 800 million years after the Big Bang, a new study based on an unusual type of star found, reports Space.com
New NASA Launches –-At Launch Pad 39-B sometime between April 1-3, NASA will simulate a countdown — including fueling and de-fueling of the Space Launch System rocket topped with the Orion capsule — as part of a dress rehearsal for Artemis I, a moon launch planned for later this year. The other, Launch Pad 39-A, will send up two SpaceX Crew Dragon capsules. One will contain four “space participants” and a former astronaut who will hitch a ride on a Falcon 9 rocket no earlier than April 3. The other will be a NASA crew leaving no earlier than April 19, reports Yahoo News.
BBC: Life could exist on planet orbiting ‘white dwarf’ star –“Researchers believe there may be a planet that could sustain life, in the vicinity of a dying sun. If confirmed, this would be the first time that a potentially life-supporting planet has been found orbiting such a star, called a “white dwarf”.
What happened before the Big Bang? (VIDEO) A NASA astrophysicist explains. Thanks to time-traveling telescopes, we can see more about the Big Bang, reports Big Think.
The James Webb Space Telescope’s Super Secret 1st Science Targets –“project personnel are staying strictly mum about their first targets, reports Space.com. “We will be seeing back in time, to understand how galaxies like our own Milky Way formed, and then evolved over 13.7 billion years of cosmic time,and also study exoplanets, planets orbiting other stars than our sun, and analyze their atmospheres.”” said Jane Rigby, the James Webb Space Telescope operations project scientist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.
James Webb Space Telescope took Stunning 12 Photos of the Milky Way Galaxy and Universe
Strange waves in the sun are traveling far faster than they should be –Astronomers have found waves made up of eddies of plasma inside the sun, and they can’t explain why they are traveling three times faster than similar waves, reports New Scientist.
NASA’s TESS Tunes into an All-sky ‘Symphony’ of Red Giant Stars –“Using observations from NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), astronomers have identified an unprecedented collection of pulsating red giant stars all across the sky. These stars, whose rhythms arise from internal sound waves, provide the opening chords of a symphonic exploration of our galactic neighborhood, reports NASA/TESS.
Should Alpha Centauri be our first interstellar target? –The closest star system to Earth, just over 4 light-years away, has three stars and at least one Earth-sized planet. Is it time to go there? asks Ethan Siegel for Forbes. “Of all the stars in the Universe beyond our Sun, the trinary Alpha Centauri star system is the closest at just over 4 light-years away. We know there’s at least one rocky, Earth-sized planet around Proxima Centauri, and if we’re lucky, one of the planets in these systems may be home to life. But does that make Alpha Centauri the best target for an interstellar mission? Maybe not. Here’s why.”
Cosmic Collisions Yield Clues about Exoplanet Formation –Low levels of bombardment reveal that the TRAPPIST-1 system probably grew quickly, reports Scientific American.
Interplanetary Switchboard--NASA Adds Giant New Dish to Communicate With Deep Space Missions. “Called Deep Space Station 53, or DSS-53, the 111-foot (34-meter) antenna is part of NASA’s Deep Space Network (DSN). It’s now operational at the network’s facility outside Madrid, one of three such ground stations around the globe.”
Women Are Creating a New Culture for Astronomy –A new generation of scientists are challenging the biased, hierarchical status quo, reports Scientific American.
The Evolving Quest for a Grand Unified Theory of Mathematics –-More than 50 years after the seeds of a vast collection of mathematical ideas called the Langlands program began to sprout, surprising new findings are emerging, reports Scientific American.
The Thesan Project: How the universe first evolved, immediately after the Big Bang, reports MIT. Named after a goddess of the dawn, the Thesan simulation of the first billion years helps explain how radiation shaped the early universe.
Documents reveal NASA’s internal struggles over renaming Webb telescope –E-mails show agency’s controversial response to astronomers concerned about past LGBT+ discrimination, reports Nature.com.
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