solar system

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Neptune, Uranus Are Almost the Same Color
Neptune Isn't the Color
Many People Think It Is

Neptune Isn't the Color Many People Think It Is

It's a pale color almost identical to Uranus, not deep blue, researchers say

(Newser) - The bluest planet in the solar system is the one you're currently on, according to new research. Researchers say that when images of Neptune were made from data sent back by NASA's Voyager 2 in the 1980s, the planet was depicted as deep blue to enhance contrast and...

6-Planet Solar System in Milky Way Has Scientists in Awe

'My jaw was on the floor,' says one of discovery made by NASA, ESA planet-hunting satellites

(Newser) - Astronomers have discovered a rare in-sync solar system with six planets moving like a grand cosmic orchestra, untouched by outside forces since their birth billions of years ago. The find, announced Wednesday in the journal Nature, can help explain how solar systems across the Milky Way galaxy came to be....

Mysterious Ring Spotted Around Minor Planet

Ring around Quaoar 'should not be possible'

(Newser) - Astronomers have made a puzzling discovery in the deep reaches of the solar system, far beyond Neptune. Quaoar, a minor planet in the Kuiper belt, has a ring like those around Saturn, but it is further from the planet than the zone where current models say rings are possible. The...

All the Planets Will Be Visible in Tonight's Sky

'Grand tour of solar system' will last until end of the year

(Newser) - Every planet in the solar system apart from the one that's under your feet will be visible in the night sky at the same tonight, closing the year with what the Virtual Telescope Project calls a "grand tour of the solar system." The project is hosting a...

NASA Releases Staggering Photos of Neptune

Our most distant planet's rings are crisp

(Newser) - If you picture Neptune as a blue ring-less planet, new images released Wednesday from NASA's James Webb Space Telescope are about to set you straight. The images show what CNN refers to as the planet's "crisp, narrow rings." As Heidi Hammel of the Webb project says,...

Rare Planet Might Lurk in 3-Star Solar System
Startling Find Made
in Bizarre Star System
studies say

Startling Find Made in Bizarre Star System

Studies see evidence of a planet forming in GW Orionis

(Newser) - Tatooine, eat your heart out: Scientists may have spotted the first known planet orbiting three suns, LiveScience reports. The rare triple-star system, GW Orionis, had already been observed roughly 1,300 light-years from Earth. Now two new studies say there could be a fledgling planet in one of its three...

How Trump's Moon Plan Might Actually Pan Out

There really are plans to mine the moon

(Newser) - President Trump issued an executive order last month allowing US companies to mine the moon, but—is this really possible? Sure enough, Popular Mechanics lays out enough of the science, current projects, and history of moon-mining enthusiasm to make it seem real. "We've just been moving in a...

Earth's Gravity Catches 'Another Moon'

Scientists call it a 'minimoon'

(Newser) - Take a gander at the stars, and you might spot ... no, you won't. It's way too small. But scientists say Earth likely has another moon—at least for now—that's no bigger than a car, New Scientist reports. Astronomers at the Catalina Sky Survey in Arizona noticed...

It's True: The Closest Planet to Every Planet Is ... Mercury
It Turns Out Venus Is
Not Our Closest Neighbor
new study

It Turns Out Venus Is Not Our Closest Neighbor

On average, that is

(Newser) - File this one away for bar trivia night: The planet closest to Earth is not Venus. So say researchers in a paper in Physics Today touting the new mathematical method they devised that spit out the true nearest neighbor when distance is averaged over time: Mercury. And here's the...

On the Far Side of the Moon, Cotton Grows

China's getting into extraterrestrial agriculture, sprouts seeds in moon lander

(Newser) - For the first time anybody is aware of, seeds have sprouted on a celestial body beyond Earth. The China National Space Administration released a photo Tuesday showing that cotton seeds brought to the far side of the moon by the country's Chang'e 4 lander had germinated, the South ...

Farthest Observed Object in Solar System Is 'Farout'

Dwarf planet is 11 billion miles away

(Newser) - Astronomers have spotted the farthest object ever observed in our solar system—and they've nicknamed the pink cosmic body "Farout." The International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center announced the discovery Monday. "Farout" (pronounced far-out) is a dwarf planet about 120 astronomical units away—that's...

Russian Official Smirks About US Moon Landings

Dmitry Rogozin says Russia will verify them

(Newser) - The head of Russia's Roscosmos space agency has said that a proposed Russian mission to the moon will be tasked with verifying that the American moon landings were real, though he appeared to be making a joke, the AP reports. "We have set this objective to fly and...

Diamond From the Sky May Have Formed in 'Lost Planet'

Meteorite has traces of proto-planet, researchers say

(Newser) - Fragments of a meteorite that fell to Earth a decade ago provide compelling evidence of a lost planet that once roamed our solar system, researchers say. A team from Switzerland, France, and Germany examined diamonds found inside the Almahata Sitta meteorite and concluded they were most likely formed by a...

Meet 'Oumuamua, Our First Guest From Another Solar System

And scientists think there could be thousands more just like it passing through

(Newser) - Houston, we have a visitor—and astronomers think there could be 10,000 more just like it "lurking" in wait, as the Guardian puts it. Meet 1I/2017 U1, or 'Oumuamua (Hawaiian for "messenger" or "scout"), which scientists say is an asteroid from another solar system—...

'We Are Dealing With Our 1st Truly Identified Alien Visitor'

Astronomers believe they've confirmed object arrived in our solar system from another

(Newser) - There's something strange in the solar neighborhood. "We've never seen anything like this before," Rob Weryk tells the New York Times . Earlier this month, the astronomer at the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy discovered a mysterious object zipping through our solar system. Calculations show it...

'ET' Dust Extracted From White Cliffs of Dover
'ET' Dust Extracted From
White Cliffs of Dover

'ET' Dust Extracted From White Cliffs of Dover

Cosmic particles could offer clues to past major events like asteroid collisions

(Newser) - The White Cliffs of Dover serve as both a stunning photographic subject and as an iconic British symbol of defense during war. Now they're also a geological museum of sorts: Scientists from Imperial College London have discovered 76 particles of fossilized cosmic dust in the chalky limestone, which could...

40-Year-Old Signal From Space Is Finally Explained
40-Year-Old Signal From
Space Is Finally Explained
in case you missed it

40-Year-Old Signal From Space Is Finally Explained

Astronomer says it was 'a natural phenomenon,' not aliens

(Newser) - In 1977, a radio telescope recorded a 72-second signal coming from the direction of the constellation Sagittarius. Stunned, the astronomer who observed it wrote "Wow!" on the readout. Since it couldn't be explained, plenty argued the signal was proof of life beyond our planet. After 40 years,...

3B Years Ago, Venus Might've Been Livable

Climate models suggest it was a lot like early Earth

(Newser) - Venus is perhaps best known as "that torrid acid bath next door," as Gizmodo puts it, with toxic thunderclouds and atmospheric pressure capable of crushing bones, per Science Alert —but it might have looked very different 700 million years ago. After plugging topographic data and the hydrogen...

Humanity Is About to Get Its Closest Ever Look at Jupiter

Juno probe scheduled to enter Jupiter's orbit July 4

(Newser) - Three Lego figures are about to get closer to Jupiter than humanity has ever been. The Legos—representations of Galileo and the Roman gods Jupiter and Juno made out of "spacecraft-grade" aluminum—are aboard NASA's Juno probe, which is scheduled to enter Jupiter's orbit July 4, the...

Why Astronomers Named This Comet After a Cat
 Why Astronomers Named 
 This Comet After a Cat 
in case you missed it

Why Astronomers Named This Comet After a Cat

C/2014 S3, now a 'Manx comet,' has no tail

(Newser) - The discovery was so unusual that at first astronomers didn't know what to call it. A comet bearing the official name C/2014 S3 also bore no tail—which isn't just unusual, but the first ever to be observed by humans, reports Reuters . Moreover, it was dark and rocky,...

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