Today’s stories include How One Barren Exoplanet Could ‘Dramatically Narrow’ the Search for Alien Life to The Webb Spots Structures From The Early Universe Never Seen Before to New NASA UFO Team Hopes They’re Not an Adversary, and much more.
Ancient bacteria might lurk beneath Mars’ surface--A New study finds the chances of uncovering life on Mars are better than previously expected, reports Northwestern University. ““If microbes evolved on Mars, they could be capable of surviving until the present day.280 million years that ‘Conan the Bacterium’ could survive buried on Mars. That means returning Mars samples could contaminate Earth.
Puzzling astronomical observations support an alternative theory of gravity, reports New Atlas. “Astrophysicists have observed some puzzling behavior in star clusters that seem to defy our current understanding of gravity at cosmic scales. Intriguingly, the observations fit with an alternative theory of gravity that could negate the need for dark matter.”
How NASA Launched Its Asteroid Killer. The DART mission, in which a spacecraft knocked an asteroid off course, is a rehearsal for saving the world, reports The New Yorker.
Will Alien technology signal extraterrestrial life, asks Earth Sky. “If aliens looked at Earth, our human technology – from cell towers to fluorescent light bulbs – could signal the presence of life. Can we find life in the universe from alien technologies?”
How One Barren Planet Could ‘Dramatically Narrow’ the Search for Alien Life –We still don’t know where aliens are, but we’re learning where they probably aren’t, reports CNET. “The team explains how an Earth-like planet orbiting the most common type of star in the universe, an M dwarf, seems to have no atmosphere. What this means is perhaps we can conclude that most other Earth-like planets orbiting all those other M dwarfs don’t have atmospheres either.”
Newly found organic molecules on Mars raise the question: Did life make them?–Organic molecules can be produced by living or non-living systems. But the recent findings are very intriguing, reports Dirk Schulze-Makuch for Big Think. “The large diversity of organic molecules detected on Mars is a hint that life once existed there.”
JWST Spots Structures From The Early Universe Never Seen Before, reports IFL Science. “The space observatory has revealed that a far distant known galaxy is not a single object but two. The object is known as MACS0647-JD, and the light we can see today has been travelling since 400 million years after the Big Bang.”
Brightest-Ever Space Explosion Reveals Possible Hints of Dark Matter–A recent gamma-ray burst known as the BOAT — “brightest of all time” — appears to have produced a high-energy particle that shouldn’t exist. For some, dark matter provides the explanation, reports Jonathan O’Callaghan for Quanta.
Why Mars has captured our hopes and fears for millennia. From being the celestial embodiment of warrior gods to housing canal-digging aliens, Mars has uniquely endured in the public consciousness. Even today, the Red Planet still spells adventure, reports Stuart Clark for New Scientist.
NASA Opens Investigation Into Recent UFO Sightings, Hopes They’re ‘Not an Adversary, reports Extreme Tech. “The team is impressively diverse: Two astrophysicists, two policy specialists, two aviation specialists, an oceanographer, an AI startup founder, a science journalist, a planetary scientist, a former NASA astronaut, a telescope scientist, a space infrastructure consultant, an electrical and computer engineer, and a physicist each made the cut.”
Space Force moves to consolidate its intelligence community, reports Federal News Network. “As the Space Force expands and defines the roles of its different commands, one of its top priorities will be intelligence gathering in space. In a service so new no one has had time to wear the shine off their buttons, Space Operations Command (SpOC) will take a major role in the business of spying, satellites and satellite image.”
Are parallel Universes physically real, or just an unsupported idea?–Are you unhappy with how various events in your life turned out? Perhaps, in a parallel Universe, things worked out very differently, reports Big Think. “There are two ways to think about it that are physically well-motivated: in the contexts of inflationary cosmology and quantum physics.”
Curated by The Daily Galaxy Editorial Staff
Your free daily fix of stories of space and science –a random journey from Planet Earth through the Cosmos– that has the capacity to provide clues to our existence and add a much needed cosmic perspective in our Anthropocene epoch.