Rogue Planets Wander The Galaxy Without A Star To Call Home
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Billions of stars orbit the center of our galaxy, and many of these stars have at least one planet orbiting them. But not all stars belong to a galaxy, and not all planets orbit a star. Rogue planets are worlds that drift untethered to any star, and experts estimate that there are billions of them in our galaxy alone.
Stellar Explosions Can Create The Awesome Beauty Of Light Echoes
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In 2002, the Hubble Space telescope watched as the star V838 Monocerotis exploded in a fiery detonation 600,000 times brighter than our sun. Over four years, the telescope kept watching, and it captured something amazing: instead of gradually petering out, the explosion periodically brightened in what's known as a "light echo."
A Thorne-Żytkow Object Is A Star Within A Star
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There's some weird stuff in the universe. Among all the binary systems, stellar voids, and bubble-shaped nebulae that we know exist, there are a great many we only think exist. One of those is a Thorne-Żytkow object (TZO), or a star that contains another star. At least, that was the case until astronomers finally detected their first TZO in 2014.
Explore Locations Of Close Encounters on San Clemente, Chile's UFO Trail
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San Clemente, Chile might be considered the unofficial UFO capital of the world. Researchers say that hundreds of UFO sightings have been reported there since the mid 90s—as much as one per week from 1995 to mid-1996, according Rodrigo Fuenzalida, president of the Chilean Group for UFO Research (AION). To commemorate San Clemente's place in supernatural lore, the Chilean tourism board established an official UFO trail in 2008. The 19-mile (30-kilometer) trail winds through the Andes mountains to hit numerous sites where close encounters have been reported. That includes Colbún Lake, which is believed to be popular with UFOs because of its high mineral content, along with various signs detailing historic sightings. But the trail's pièce de résistance is El Enladrillado, an unusually flat expanse formed by 200 precisely cut volcanic blocks that were laid by ancient civilizations. This eery zone takes four hours to approach on horseback, and is believed to be a landing pad for flying saucers. The unique trail gives tourists a supernatural sight to pair with the country's natural splendor. Learn more about UFO sightings in the videos below.
Asgardia Is Planned To Be Humanity's First Space Nation
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Science and technology is moving at a rapid pace, but even so, the red tape and shifting priorities of individual governments have kept it from moving as fast as it could. That's why a multinational group of researchers, scientists, and other experts have unveiled their plans for an independent space nation they've dubbed Asgardia, after the city in the skies from Norse mythology. The hope is that the nation "will offer an independent platform free from the constraint of a land-based country's laws," a place "which is truly 'no man's land'." There are also plans to mine asteroids and create a protective shield to defend Earth from meteorites, debris, and other interplanetary threats. The first step is to launch a robotic satellite in late 2017, then follow up with a permanent space station in which Asgardian citizens can live and work.