Craters: Seeing Fake Patterns

March 18, 2017 in Darwin and EvolutionDating MethodsDinosaursDumb IdeasEducationFossilsGeologyMediaPhilosophy of SciencePhysicsSolar System

Biologists build on models from geologists who build on models from planetologists. But what if the bottom model is false?

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Earthrise 2015 LRO

Moon Bombarded by Crashing Theories

January 10, 2017 in AstronomyDating MethodsDumb IdeasGeologyPhilosophy of SciencePhysicsSolar System

Strange things happen on our nearest neighbor. Stranger things happen in the heads of theorists trying to figure out our nearest neighbor.

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Chicxulub Crater Reports Begin

November 19, 2016 in Amazing FactsDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Scientists who drilled into the large crater in southern Mexico have started interpreting the cores.

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Trending: Moons With Oceans

October 14, 2016 in AstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Europa has one. Enceladus has one. Titan might have one. Now, it seems every moon wants an ocean under its crust.

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Dawn of a Young Ceres

September 10, 2016 in Amazing FactsAstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

The largest asteroid has a problem: she’s too young to get a date.

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First Pluto Papers Published

March 19, 2016 in Amazing FactsAstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhilosophy of SciencePhysicsSolar System

Planetary scientists have published their first official findings about the 9th planet (or dwarf planet), Pluto.

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Surprising Youth in the Solar System

January 26, 2016 in Amazing FactsAstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Four solar system objects in the news look young, not billions of years old.

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Full Moon Has Magnetic Secret

December 5, 2014 in Dating MethodsGeologyPhilosophy of SciencePhysicsSolar System

Ponder this under tonight’s full moon. Scientists now say the moon once had a magnetic field stronger than Earth’s is now.

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Moon Still Has Hot Core

August 23, 2014 in AstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Japanese scientists have determined that a soft, hot core remains in the center of the moon, contrary to expectations.

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Lunar Tunes: Do Impacts Ring a Bell?

June 12, 2014 in AstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhilosophy of SciencePhysicsSolar System

By looking at current dust and craters, cosmologists think they can hear the echoes of an impact that created the moon. Is that lunar, or looney?

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Venus: 80% of Its History Is Missing

January 2, 2014 in AstronomyDating MethodsGeologySolar System

In spite of being called Earth’s twin, Venus is vastly different. Scientists are struggling to fit its young surface to 4.5 billion years.

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Changing Stories at Saturn and Titan

December 21, 2013 in Amazing FactsAstronomyDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

News from the ringed planet and its largest moon shows scientists can’t keep their stories straight when trying to keep Saturn billions of years old.

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Evolutionary Origin-of-Life Speculations Contradict Each Other

November 9, 2013 in Cell BiologyDarwin and EvolutionDumb IdeasGeologyPhilosophy of SciencePhysicsSolar System

Good scientific approaches should converge on the truth. In secular origin-of-life studies, theories run off in all directions, often crashing into one another.

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Scientists Dodge Youthfulness of Saturn Moon Titan

August 17, 2013 in Dating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Like Enceladus, Saturn’s moon Titan shows multiple signs of being far less than 4.5 billion years old – yet the press releases are strangely silent about the implications.

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Titan Is as Titan Does

December 23, 2012 in Amazing FactsDating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Saturn’s giant moon Titan keeps revealing mysterious dynamics in the here and now, leaving interpretation to fallible scientists who sometimes predicted otherwise.

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Crater Count Dating Still Unreliable

May 22, 2012 in Dating MethodsGeologyPhysicsSolar System

Worries about the crater count dating method, widely relied upon to infer ages of planetary surfaces, began emerging in 2005. Those worries have not subsided; they have only grown worse. Crater numbers may have nothing to do with age.

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Mercury Messenger: Surprise!

September 30, 2011 in Dating MethodsGeologyPhysical SciencePhysicsSolar SystemSpace

As boring as the moon? Just a burned-out cinder? Not Mercury. True to tradition for planetary exploration, the MESSENGER spacecraft has served up a plate of surprises about the innermost planet. In orbit since March, the ship is sending theorists back to the drawing board to figure out a number of puzzling phenomena, some unique to Mercury. Commentators fall into two categories: those that are flabbergasted, and those who say all is well.

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