“Before the mid-90’s, when the first secure case of an exoplanet, 51 Peg was discovered orbiting around a star like our own, planets beyond our own solar system were thought to be out of the reach of humans. The idea that we could detect worlds beyond our own or even that worlds beyond on our own might be there was questioned,” says astrophysicist and dailygalaxy.com editor and science advisor, Jackie Faherty. “But once the first few worlds were found, the floodgates were opened and the zoo of exoplanets started to reveal itself.”
Your free twice-weekly 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.
Supernova explosions release as much energy in a second as our Sun will in its entire 10-billion year existence. Without supernovae, “there would be no computer chips, trilobites, Mozart or the tears of a little girl,” wrote science writer Clifford A. Pickover.
In the blink of a geological eye, nearly 600 million years ago, a massive ice age radically altered the planet’s climate, resulting in a “Snowball Earth,” also known as the Cryogenian Period, severely constricting the oxygen supply on the planet. Scientists at the University of Southampton have proposed that changes in Earth’s orbit may have allowed complex life to emerge and thrive during the most hostile climate episode the planet has ever experienced.
“Planet Earth Report” provides descriptive links to headline news by leading science journalists about the extraordinary discoveries, technology, people, and events changing our knowledge of Planet Earth and the future of the human species.
Scientists are on the hunt for primordial magnetic fields dating back to the Big Bang, which would transform our understanding of how the universe evolved and solve a major mystery of our Universe. The unsolved question is: where did these enormous magnetic fields — an invisible primordial ‘magnetic soul’ that pervades the Cosmos — come from, if they existed at all?