Universe Today 5 Nov 2018, 18:49 UTC When it comes to the search for extra-terrestrial life, scientists have a tendency to be a bit geocentric – i.e. they look for planets that resemble our own. This is understandable, seeing as how Earth is the only planet that we know of that supports life. As result, those searching for extra-terrestrial life have been looking for planets that are terrestrial (rocky) in nature, orbit within their stars habitable zones, and have enough water on their surfaces. In the course of discovering several thousand exoplanets, scientists have found that many may in fact be “water worlds” (planets where up to 50% of their mass is water). This naturally raises some questions, like how much water is too much, and could too much land be a problem as well? To address these, a pair of researchers from the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) conducted a studyto determine how the ratio between water and land masses can contribute to life.
Starts With a Bang! 5 Nov 2018, 14:01 UTC These ten ghostly astronomical sights house some deep-and-frightening scientific truths within them.
Sky and Telescope 5 Nov 2018, 13:00 UTC Take a look behind the scenes as the New Horizons team gears up for the historic first flyby of a body in the remote Kuiper Belt, in this first of a four-part series from the mission's Principal Investigator Alan Stern.
The Planetary Society Blog
The Mars Exploration Rovers Update: NASA Green-Lights Team to Continue Opportunity Recovery Plan into 20195 Nov 2018, 07:19 UTC October came and went without a beep from Opportunity, silence that was still no surprise for some, but a little discouraging for other members of the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) team. “We're still waiting,” said MER Principal Investigator Steve Squyres, of Cornell University, summing up the month.
Geekwire 3 Nov 2018, 17:58 UTC For decades, rocket scientist Robert Zubrin has been a voice crying in the Martian wilderness. But now the president of the Mars Society is pleading the case for a cause that’s much closer than the Red Planet: low-cost lunar exploration and settlement.