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The Moral Question Of Our Time: Can We Share The Planet?

UN Climate Report: We Must Focus On 'Decarbonization', and It Won't Wreck the Economy - "The basic message is simple: We share a planet. Let's start acting like it." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Apr 23, 2014 - 50 comments

I've always wanted to have a neighbor just like you

Won't you please, please won't you be my neighbor? NASA's Kepler Discovers First Earth-Size Planet In The 'Habitable Zone' of Another Star. Kepler-186f is a planet about ten percent bigger than Earth that orbits within the habitable zone of its star. The light there is dim and orange, and it only gets about a third of the sunshine we do, but that may be enough for life. If you go outside tonight, there might be someone 500 light years away looking back at you...
posted by Kevin Street on Apr 17, 2014 - 75 comments

the time is venus square saturn

Van Cleef & Arpels, purveyors of super fine jewelry, have created the Midnight Planetarium, which holds part of the solar system on your wrist:
This new Poetic Complication timepiece provides a miniature representation of the movement of six planets around the sun and their position at any given time. Earth and Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn are set in motion thanks to a self-winding mechanical movement of great complexity: equipped with an exclusive module developed in partnership with the Maison Christiaan van der Klaauw, it contains 396 separate parts. The movement of each planet is true to its genuine length of orbit: it will take Saturn over 29 years to make a complete circuit of the dial, while Jupiter will take almost 12 years, Mars 687 days, Earth 365 days, Venus 224 days and Mercury 88 days.
[more inside]
posted by divabat on Jan 26, 2014 - 29 comments

The Madness Of The Planets

I am a staunch believer in leading with the bad news, so let me get straight to the point. Earth, our anchor and our solitary haven in a hostile universe, is in a precarious situation. The solar system around us is rife with instability.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Dec 31, 2013 - 42 comments

Mysterious weather at the second largest planet in our solar system

There's 1,200 mile wide hurricane on Saturn, swirling within a hexagonal shape.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Apr 29, 2013 - 58 comments

What am I, an idiot? I mean, kind of?

Ask A Banker: What's The Deal With High Frequency Trading? From the planet money NPR team.
posted by garlic on Nov 7, 2012 - 35 comments

The cosmos is also within us, we're made of star-stuff. We are a way for the cosmos, to know itself.

Cosmos: A Personal Voyage is a thirteen-part television series of one hour shows written by Carl Sagan, Ann Druyan, and Steven Soter, that was aired at the tail end of 1980 and was - at the time - the most widely watched series in the history of American public television. It is best introduced by an audio excerpt of one of his books, The Pale Blue Dot. Inside is a complete annotated collection of the series. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 3, 2012 - 46 comments

What do you mean you've never been to Alpha Centauri? Oh, for heavens sake mankind, it's only four light years away, you know.

A planet with about the same mass as Earth has been discovered in orbit around Alpha Centauri B, a star in the Alpha Centauri triple star system - the solar system's closest neighbor, a mere 4.3 light years away. Alpha Centauri B is very similar to the Sun, and this marks the first planet with a mass similar to Earth ever found around a Sun-like star. However, the planet is orbiting at a distance of about six million kilometers, much closer than Mercury is to the Sun in the Solar System, so temperatures above 400 degrees Celsius may make vacationing there unpalatable even for the most dedicated beach-goer. However, lead paper author Xavier Dumusque called it "a major step towards the detection of a twin Earth in the immediate vicinity of the Sun."
posted by kyrademon on Oct 16, 2012 - 55 comments

"This is the best time. The next 2 or 3 thousand years will be fantastic!"

In 2005, the Discovery Channel aired Alien Worlds, a fictional documentary based on Wayne Douglas Barlowe's graphic novel, Expedition: Being an Account in Words and Artwork of the 2358 A.D. Voyage to Darwin IV." Depicting mankind's first robotic mission to an extrasolar planet that could support life, the show drew from NASA's Origins Program, the NASA/JPL PlanetQuest Mission, and ESA's Darwin Project. It was primarily presented through CGI, but included interviews from a variety of NASA scientists and other experts, including Stephen Hawking, Michio Kaku, John Craig Venter and Jack Horner. Oh, and George Lucas, too. Official site. Previously on MeFi. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Sep 21, 2012 - 12 comments

Strange New Worlds

Let's take another look at Chris Wayan's PLANETOCOPIA (previously): A series of detailed conceptions and paintings of vastly different Earths based on differing climates and land mass position. A planet designed to speed up East-West cvilization development! A life-bearing super hot world! An Earth with most of the seas missing! Forever Ice Age Earth! [more inside]
posted by The Whelk on Sep 9, 2012 - 11 comments

We're good. But we're not as good as David Apppenboroow

Planet Earth narrated by kids [slyt]
posted by special-k on Apr 20, 2012 - 17 comments

full of ★☆★☆★

OMG SPACE aims to illustrate the scale and the grandeur of our solar system, as well as illustrate through the use of infographics our work in the exploration of our solar system with various spacecraft. [more inside]
posted by zamboni on Apr 3, 2012 - 19 comments

"A situation in many respects similar to ours"

For a time in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it was erroneously believed that there were canals on Mars.
Maps of the Martian canals. List of Martian Canals. Historical Globes of the Red Planet.
A modern perspective. The Planet Mars: A History of Observation and Discovery .
posted by timshel on Feb 12, 2012 - 26 comments

Hang in there till at least 00:48

Sloth Sanctuary is a documentary about a sloth orphanage in Costa Rica that will air on Animal Planet on December 18th. Trailer
posted by babbyʼ); Drop table users; -- on Dec 14, 2011 - 33 comments

Lost Episode of "Cosmos" Found

A never-aired fourteenth episode of Carl Sagan's groundbreaking PBS show Cosmos has been discovered, detailing the one of the strangest planets yet discovered. (SLYT)
posted by murphy slaw on Dec 1, 2011 - 24 comments

Time to update your moon charts for the solar system.

Pluto may have been downsized in 2006, but it's still living large, moon wise: A fourth moon has been discovered orbiting the dwarf planet.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jul 20, 2011 - 82 comments

Gordan Ugarković

Croatian software developer and amateur image processor Gordan Ugarković takes images from NASA's unmanned space probes released to the Planetary Data System, splices them together and tweaks the colors, sometimes combining higher resolution black and white images with color images, sometimes recreating what the object would look like in natural color (ie, in visible wavelengths, from images taken in multiple wavelengths), sometimes heightening the contrast to bring out detail. (via) [more inside]
posted by nangar on May 20, 2011 - 7 comments

"....prepares for the hunt."

BBC Human Planet: The Douche For a few weeks, the BBC film crew had the opportunity to follow a unique specimen, they were able to observe and record its mannerisms, rituals and way of life. The result of this is BBC Human Planet: The Douche.
posted by Fizz on Apr 14, 2011 - 49 comments

A beautiful and powerful solar system viewing tool.

Have fun and learn at the same time.
posted by analogtom on Apr 4, 2011 - 23 comments

Want to explaind the Solar System to someone?

A beautiful interactive model of our Solar System
posted by analogtom on Mar 22, 2011 - 20 comments

Freeman Dyson's Global Warming Heresy

The Danger of Cosmic Genius. Why is Freeman Dyson now considered "perhaps our most prominent global-warming skeptic?" Previously
posted by zarq on Jan 19, 2011 - 50 comments

Far Out

"This page shows a scale model of the solar system, shrunken down to the point where the Sun, normally more than eight hundred thousand miles across, is the size you see it here. The planets are shown in corresponding scale." [more inside]
posted by bwg on Dec 21, 2010 - 63 comments

The Acrylic Age of Science Fiction

MANCHU Starships - wonderful old school SF paintings by French illustartor Philippe Bouchet.
posted by Artw on Nov 14, 2010 - 33 comments

Pack your bags, kids

Astronomers have found the first exoplanet within the "habitable" band around a star, or within the distance band around a start that would allow for liquid water. The planet is roughly 3 times the size of the Earth and orbits red dwarf Gliese 581 every 36.6 days at a distance of about 13 million miles.
posted by Punkey on Sep 29, 2010 - 85 comments

Planet Michael

The new planet, currently under development and slated for launch next year, will be an immersive virtual space themed after iconic visuals drawn from Michael’s music, his life and the global issues that concerned him.
posted by Joe Beese on Sep 21, 2010 - 9 comments

At least Michael Bay won't be directing...

In the year 2182 -- 172 years time -- there's a 1 in 1000 chance that we might be hit by a very large asteroid. With two centuries advance notice, will we be able to develop effective asteroid deflection techniques? [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jul 29, 2010 - 53 comments

Cover Art From International Editions Of "Planet Of the Apes" Comics.

Get your hands off me, you damn, dirty macaco!
posted by grumblebee on Jun 15, 2010 - 6 comments

From the highest mountain tops...

Our amazing planet. I could study this all day.
posted by Melismata on Jun 10, 2010 - 70 comments

Super-Earth Discovered

GJ 1214b is the most Earth-like planet ever found outside our solar system. And it needs a name.
posted by Taft on Dec 16, 2009 - 174 comments

Saturn Equinox

Cassini Reveals New Ring Quirks, Shadows During Saturn Equinox. "It's like putting on 3-D glasses and seeing the third dimension for the first time," said Bob Pappalardo, Cassini project scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "This is among the most important events Cassini has shown us." Latest press images.
posted by netbros on Sep 21, 2009 - 30 comments

Planetary gear

5?
posted by twoleftfeet on Sep 20, 2009 - 23 comments

Pop Rocks

The Little Fox has gas. Giovanna Tinetti using the Hubble Telescope says (in Nature - subscription required) there's Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere of the Jupiter sized, hot, extrasolar planet HD 189733b. Scientists have also found methane clouds in its atmosphere, as well as water vapor. Tinetti (who looks a bit like Kari Byron from mythbusters if you squint) also found evidence of methane.
posted by Smedleyman on Nov 27, 2008 - 11 comments

The 4th degree

80 percent of Americans say global warming is real and poses a threat to humanity. Which is good because if the global temperature raises by 4 degrees we're all dead. However only 44 percent would be willing to face any financial hardship in the name of a solution.
posted by Artw on Aug 10, 2008 - 89 comments

In tribute to Charlton Heston, Russia has begun a real-life Planet of the Apes.

By 2020, Mars may have monkeys, adding to the impressive roster of primates in space.
posted by myopicman on Apr 14, 2008 - 24 comments

Create your own planet

Planet Sydney. Planet Joshua Tree. Planet Kyoto. Sadly, you can't visit any of these worlds, but you can make your own.
posted by Terminal Verbosity on Nov 14, 2007 - 10 comments

September 2007 polar sea ice anomaly

Video (8MB, MPEG) of arctic sea ice extent, recorded from January to September 2007. [other formats] This summer a dramatic decrease compared to previous years in the extent of the north pole ice cap was observed. Scientists are freaked out [bugmenot]. This summer, the Northwest Passage was open for a few weeks, allowing three ships to traverse it. [more inside]
posted by sergeant sandwich on Oct 12, 2007 - 32 comments

Tom Cruise, ooohhhh!

A gay boy wished for a planet full of unicorns, Planet Unicorn, Unicorn Planet! Episode: two, three.
posted by milarepa on Jun 21, 2007 - 52 comments

Recycle your computer junk

Recycle your computer junk. A large US office supply retailer just became the first to offer everyday, in-store recycling for computers & other office technology, and will recycle them using EPA guidelines. Only $10 an item (smaller stuff like mice and keyboards are free).
posted by Dave Faris on May 31, 2007 - 52 comments

Ice hot planet

Scientists have discovered a planet composed of scorching hot ice. Originally thought to be a gas giant due to its mass, its actually only four times the size of Earth and most likely composed of exotic forms of ice, such as Ice VII and Ice X with s surface temperature of 300° C.
posted by Artw on May 16, 2007 - 30 comments

A home away from home?

Spacefilter: ESA telescope detects planet 20 lightyears away with a temperature between 0 and 40 degrees Celsius, dubbed "most Earth-like planet yet."
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Apr 24, 2007 - 104 comments

For, it is not the center of all the revolutions.

Planetocopia - have some new planets for the New Year.
Future ones; tilted ones; wrong ones.
Plus instructions on how to make your own.
via Making Light.
posted by thatwhichfalls on Dec 31, 2006 - 4 comments

Armageddon's Deep Impact

An interactive map of the 174 major meteor impact craters. The largest crater we know of is the Vredefort Dome in South Africa, caused by a meteor some 10 km in diameter. Almost as large in the Sudbury Structure, located in Ontario, which contains some of the world's richest nickel and copper reserves, and has been only confirmed recently to be a crater. Third largest is the now-famous Chicxulub crater in the Yucatan, which probably killed the dinosaurs. Then take a look at an animation of asteroids near Earth [animated gif] and the list of minor planets that could hit us. Want to find out what happens when an meteor impacts in your area? Use the handy Earth Impacts Effects Program!
posted by blahblahblah on Oct 25, 2006 - 13 comments

support democracy

SAVE PLUTO
posted by thirteenkiller on Aug 25, 2006 - 91 comments

Years of basic science textbooks down the drain...

My very elegant mother just sat upon ninjas... the textbooks, mnemonic devices and more will have to be changed today. Pluto has been demoted from its status as planet to a dwarf planet. We now have 8 in our solar system. The debate is not at all new, and its apparent resolution may not matter to our everyday lives, but it's just a little weird to think of all of the things that will have to be retroactively edited or amended as a result.
posted by twiggy on Aug 24, 2006 - 96 comments

"The new Audrey Hepburn?"

"Damn, Natalie, you a crazy chick!" (video) Natalie Portman, rapper and riot grrl? Maybe Lazy Sunday (video;mefi post) wasn't a freak occurence after all. Personally, I had expected the Lonely Planet guys to end up a one-hit wonder, but in my book they've (at least) moved up a notch to talented one-trick pony. Another very well-done digital short that should be seen by a lot more people than SNL's dismal ratings will allow.
posted by Sinner on Mar 5, 2006 - 99 comments

Man Very Early Made Jars Stand Up Nearly Perfectly Ummm...

A new planet has been found. The new planet, named 2003 UB313 is the farthest known object in the solar system, larger than pluto and a lousy tourist destination. Slacker Astronomy has an interview with co-discoverer Dr. Chad Trujillo.
posted by mosch on Jul 30, 2005 - 39 comments

Rocky Planet

"This planet answers an ancient question," said team leader Geoffrey Marcy, professor of astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley. "Over 2,000 years ago, the Greek philosophers Aristotle and Epicurus argued about whether there were other Earth-like planets. Now, for the first time, we have evidence for a rocky planet around a normal star."
The star, Gliese 876, visible in the night sky, lies only 15 light-years away.
posted by vacapinta on Jun 14, 2005 - 19 comments

Alien planet

Alien planet "The drama takes place on Darwin IV, a fictional planet 6.5 light-years from Earth, with two suns and 60 percent gravity. Having identified Darwin as a world that could support life, Earth sends a pilot mission consisting of the mothership and three probes." Discovery channel feature, Flash heavy site, via Pharyngula.
posted by dhruva on May 9, 2005 - 20 comments

300 miles up

300 miles up.
posted by crunchland on Sep 15, 2003 - 25 comments

Doomed planet found

A Doomed planet orbiting a distant star has been located. No, not Krypton. The planet is going to be consumed by the star soon, but astronomers are not going to wait up for it.
posted by kaemaril on Jan 28, 2003 - 7 comments

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