Facing Reality About Life on Other Planets: Geophysics
September 5, 2017
by Dr Henry Richter This is a continuation of my discussion on the requirements to allow life to exist on a planet elsewhere in the universe. My discussion moved from our position in the galaxy, our position in the solar system, and then focused on the earth, looking at the influence of our moon, our […]
Moon Bombarded by Crashing Theories
January 10, 2017
Strange things happen on our nearest neighbor. Stranger things happen in the heads of theorists trying to figure out our nearest neighbor.
Underground Oceans Can't Last Forever
June 29, 2016
If Pluto and Enceladus have oceans under the crust, why are they still liquid after billions of years?
Only Earth Is a Life Haven
June 23, 2016
Here are more discoveries that make it reasonable to think complex life is rare in the universe, and might be unique to Earth.
First Pluto Papers Published
March 19, 2016
Planetary scientists have published their first official findings about the 9th planet (or dwarf planet), Pluto.
Tiny Enceladus Beats Saturn in Plasma Output
February 17, 2016
An astonishing case of the tail wagging the dog: tiny moon is major source of plasma in Saturn's magnetosphere.
Cassini Plunges Through Enceladus Geyser, and Other Saturn News
October 29, 2015
Yesterday's daring plunge through a plume of an Enceladus geyser is the highlight of recent Saturn news.
Ski Pluto: Glaciers Are Flowing
July 28, 2015
Planetary scientists are dumbfounded by more evidence of youth at Pluto, both on the surface and in the atmosphere.
Astrobiology Hopes Diminish
December 6, 2014
Recent findings both near and far create challenges for beliefs that life is common in the universe.
Sun Attacks, but Earth Fights Back
March 8, 2014
Geophysicists have found that the Earth fights deadly solar radiation with a plasma punch.
Lunar Dust Problem Re-opened
November 21, 2013
Long-lost Apollo data on lunar dust accumulation has been found, showing a tenfold increase over previous estimates. What does that imply about the age of the moon?
Planet Habitable Zone Cannot Be Too Windy
September 19, 2013
The "habitable zone" of a planet usually concerns its distance from the star such that it can support liquid water. But what if the star fries the surface with intense stellar winds?
A Brain Wouldn't Survive Star Travel
January 6, 2013
Don't take a star trek unless you want to arrive demented.
Our Poisonous Moon: Better from a Distance
July 13, 2012
The moon stabilizes Earth's axis and regulates the tides, but enjoy it from a distance. Now there are more reasons you wouldn't want to live there.
A Young Moon for Life
January 3, 2012
Our moon is unique in the solar system. Just the right size and just the right distance, it is positioned to stabilize the tilt of Earth’s axis, providing stable seasonal cycles. Science lacks data so far to know just how unique the Earth-moon relationship in a habitable zone is among other stellar systems. We know from the planets of our own solar system that moons come in all sizes, from tiny Deimos to massive Titan, and orbit in apparently arbitrary radii from their host planets. What astrophysicists can do is predict what would happen on earth if things were different. That’s what one scientist did. Another discovery could change the view of the moon’s surface being unaltered for billions of years.