A New Model of Our Universe to UFOs, Intelligence and Cassandra’s Curse (The Galaxy Report)

ESO Observatories Chile

 

Today’s stories include Back when SETI began, we expected intelligent extraterrestrials to make things easy for us to Oumuamua still puzzling scientists 5 years after discovery to NASA’s Webb takes stunning star-filled portrait of Pillars of Creation, and much more.

The next stage of cosmic microwave background research. “With CMB-S4, scientists hope to connect a sandy desert with a polar desert—and revolutionize our understanding of the early universe. ‘We’re going back to look for physics from the dawn of time and test the model for how our whole universe was created,'” reportsSymmetry.com

The Milky Way’s Black Hole May Be the Key to What Drives Galaxies–Supermassive black holes are engines of galactic evolution, but new observations of our galaxy and its central hole don’t quite match expectations, reports Wired.

Back when SETI began, we expected intelligent extraterrestrials to make things easy for us. “After more than six decades of searching, it is becoming clear that there are no beacons in our galaxy. If our extraterrestrial neighbors are transmitting, then they’re doing so quietly. But our galaxy is just one of hundreds of billions in the observable universe. Are there beacons in those galaxies? And despite the vast distances, could we detect them?”

UFOs, intelligence and Cassandra’s curse--“Critically, officials have high confidence that secret U.S. aircraft or experimental technologies are not responsible for these perplexing encounters. At the same time, analysts have no evidence that a foreign power is behind hundreds of UFO reports. At this point, any intelligence analyst worth his salt should sound the alarm about the UFO phenomenon. And if policymakers are, in fact, receiving such warnings, Cassandra’s curse appears to be alive and well, reports The Hill.

One of the main problems if we ever find alien life, it’s our politicians, reports Chris Young for Interesting Engineering. “Scientists suggest the geopolitical fallout of discovering extraterrestrials could be more dangerous than the aliens themselves.”

NASA’s Webb Takes Star-Filled Portrait of Pillars of Creation, reports NASA. “Webb’s new view of the Pillars of Creation, which were first made famous when imaged by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope in 1995, will help researchers revamp their models of star formation by identifying far more precise counts of newly formed stars, along with the quantities of gas and dust in the region. Over time, they will begin to build a clearer understanding of how stars form and burst out of these dusty clouds over millions of years.”

Physicists Rewrite a Quantum Rule That Clashes With Our Universe –The past and the future are tightly linked in conventional quantum mechanics. Perhaps too tightly. A tweak to the theory could let quantum possibilities increase as space expands, reports Charlie Wood for Quanta.com.

Physicists Got a Quantum Computer to Work by Blasting It With the Fibonacci Sequence–An experiment involving a Fibonacci pattern of laser pulses apparently yielded a new state of matter, reports Gizmodo. “What we realized is that by using quasi-periodic sequences based on the Fibonacci pattern, you can have the system behave as if there are two distinct directions of time.”

‘Oumuamua still puzzling scientists 5 years after discovery, reports Keith Cooper for Space.com.”Although its origins are still hazy, interstellar objects like ‘Oumuamua may be the product of wandering planets in young planetary systems.”

NASA Studies Origins of ‘Weird’ Solar System Object: Dwarf Planet Haumea–Nearly the size of Pluto, Haumea is strange in several ways. It spins faster, by far, than anything else of its size, whirling on its axis in only four hours. Because of its fast spin, Haumea is shaped like a deflated American football instead of a sphere. Its surface, made largely of water ice, is unlike almost any other surface in the KuiperBelt.

Inside the Proton, the ‘Most Complicated Thing You Could Possibly Imagine’, reports Charlie Wood and Merrill Sherman for Quanta.com.”The positively charged particle at the heart of the atom is an object of unspeakable complexity, one that changes its appearance depending on how it is probed. We’ve attempted to connect the proton’s many faces to form the most complete picture yet.”

Lucy Spacecraft Will Slingshot Around Earth–On October 16, 2022, NASA’s Lucy spacecraft will fly by the Earth for the first of three gravity assists. During the maneuver, Lucy will pass within 219 miles of the planet (lower than the International Space Station) and will fly through a cloud of over 6,200 Earth-orbiting satellites. This data visualization depicts Lucy’s trajectory through the satellite swarm.

Algae could be instrumental in making human exploration of Mars possible, reports the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). “”Extremophilic algae” are types of algae known for their ability to thrive in extreme environments such as high-altitude snowy mountains or hypersaline lakes. If we want to accomplish long-term space exploration with people instead of rovers and robots, it will require developing a self-sustaining life support system—food and breathable air.”

 

For the first time, astronomers saw dust in space being pushed by starlight--The finding could help researchers understand how light sculpts matter throughout the cosmos, reports Science News. “Astronomers have long known that the dust emerging from the star WR 140 and its companion is formed by gas from these two stars colliding and condensing into soot. But images of the pair taken over the course of 16 years show that the dust is accelerating as it travels away from the stars.”

First known map of the Cosmos found hidden in Medieval parchment–Fabled star catalogue by ancient Greek astronomer Hipparchus had been feared lost, reports Nature. James Evans, a historian of astronomy at the University of Puget Sound says it proves that Hipparchus, often considered the greatest astronomer of ancient Greece, really did map the heavens centuries before other known attempts. It also illuminates a crucial moment in the birth of science, when astronomers shifted from simply describing the patterns they saw in the sky to measuring and predicting them.

Astronomers discovered something strange about ‘potentially hazardous’ asteroid Phaethon, reports Stefanie Waldek for Space.com.–Phaethon is just the 11th known asteroid to demonstrate a changing rotational period.

Record measurement of universe suggests ‘something is fishy’, reports France 24. “The comprehensive new study published in The Astrophysical Journal further confirmed that there is a significant discrepancy between two different ways to estimate the speed at which the universe is expanding.”

Is the question ‘Why is there something instead of nothing?’ even worth asking?--In this video from the interview series Closer to Truth, the US presenter Robert Lawrence Kuhn and the UK philosopher A C Grayling peel back the layers of a question that’s been bandied about in many a Philosophy 101 classroom.

Curated by The Daily Galaxy Editorial Staff

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