The Russian Federal Space Agency has just released a mind-boggling animation that shows how the planet's horizons will appear if other celestial bodies replaced the sun. The first star you'll see is Alpha Centauri, the nearest visible sun to our own, and one of the brightest in the southern night sky. Located 4.3 light-years away, nearly 300,000 times the distance from the Earth to the sun, a double-star system would appear in our skies if it replaced the sun. It orbits a common center of gravity every 80 years with its companion, Alpha Centauri B. Continue reading for the video and more information.
Researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia have built a time machine simulator. In other words, this system can mimic how a quantum particle would behave if it passed through a closed time-like curve and interacted with a younger version of its self. They fired pairs of entangled light particles through a circuit, in which entangled particles are created from the same parent particle, so they are identical to each other and any force that acts on one immediately affects the other. Think of this as meeting the younger version of yourself right at the entrance to a time travel loop. Continue reading for a video and to hear what happened.
Urban Armor Gear wanted to prove that their military-grade iPhone 6 case could protect the handset from just about anything. So, they attached the phone, two GoPro cameras and a GPS locator onto a weather balloon to the edge of space, 100,000-feet up. Despite the handset shutting down due to extreme temperatures during the flight, it was fully functional after the test, even without a screen protector. Steve Armstrong, the co-founder of Urban Armor Gear, said: "Our cases already meet military drop-test standards, but now we can officially say that they are space tested as well." Continue reading for the video and more information.
NASA has been known to cut off its live feed from the International Space Station whenever an unidentified flying object appears. There were two separate occasions this month where UFO hunters claim to have spotted mysterious objects floating on screen before going the camera goes offline. Toby Lundh recently spotted the one you see above right outside the space station, moments before the stream was disconnected. Continue reading for two videos and more information.
Ever wonder where some of the astronauts aboard the ISS browse the internet? It just might be inside the Cupola module, which as special windows that provide a panoramic view of Earth, allowing them to take images using 8 cameras. Cupola also houses one of the space station's two robotic work stations used by astronauts to manipulate the large robotic arm seen through the right window. Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading to watch the top five viral videos of the day.
Once the first child is officially born on Mars, interplanetary passports will need to have a "Planet of Birth" section on them, or so we'd like to think. The shower is a great place to come up with interesting, yet plausible, thoughts like these. I mean, humans are probably less than a decade away from building the first Mars (or Moon) colony, complete with living quarters, research labs, etc. Continue reading for more thoughts about the universe that actually make sense.
What you're looking at above is the sharpest and largest Hubble image ever taken. It stretches 48,000 light-years across the Andromeda Galaxy's disk, and shows more than 100 million stars. This galaxy may be located 2.5 million light-years from Earth, but since Andromeda fills up so much of Hubble's field of view, it was able to capture incredible detail in its survey of the galaxy. "Hubble traces densely packed stars extending from the innermost hub of the galaxy. Moving out from this central galactic bulge, the panorama sweeps from the galaxy's central bulge across lanes of stars and dust to the sparser outer disk," said a Hubble representative. Continue reading for a video and more information.
At approximately 3:05am local time, Bucharest residents witnessed a space object that lit up the entire night sky. Several security cameras captured the blinding sight, as the flash lasted for several seconds. According to the Romanian Space Agency (Rosa), the event was caused by a meteoroid entering the Earth's atmosphere at an altitude of 31 - 43 miles. Continue reading for two videos and more information.
First captured in 1995, NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope brings us a new image of the breathtaking Pillars of Creation, which are a part of the Eagle Nebula 6500-light-years away, also known as Messier 16. This updated snapshot gives us a more detailed and wider look at the nebula, "capturing the multi-coloured glow of gas clouds, wispy tendrils of dark cosmic dust, and the rust-coloured elephants' trunks of the nebula's famous pillars." The pillars are composed of cool molecular hydrogen and dust that are being eroded by photoevaporation from the ultraviolet light of relatively close and hot stars. The leftmost pillar is about 4 light years in length. The finger-like protrusions at the top of the clouds are larger than our solar system, and are made visible by the shadows of Evaporating Gaseous Globules (EGGs), which shields the gas behind them from intense UV flux. Continue reading to see the infrared version as well as a "then vs. now" comparison.
What do you get when you combine chloroplasts with silk? Man-made leaves that produce oxygen of course. Developed by Julian Melchiorri, these silk matrices, which are infused with real live chloroplasts, create a sustainable source of oxygen that could be used for space travel. Dezeen, a design website, interviewed Melchiorri and he said it "has an amazing property in that it stabilizes organelles." Click here to view the first image in this week's geek life gallery. Continue reading for a viral video of a racing fanatic simulating a rally car with a beer can and clothes iron.