Monday, April 21, 2014


Before I get started with what's new, I'll put up this beautiful shot of an erupting Icelandic volcano. It reveals three different kinds of lightning occurring simultaneously.

Most people believe that stars are formed by the action of gravity on rotating disks of gas and dust. That's widely believed but last year two physicists got the million dollar Shaw Prize for proving it wrong. According to them gravity alone wouldn't be able to destabilize the disk and attract matter inward while angular momentum was simultaneously pushing it out.

These guys claim the missing ingredient is magnetism. Apparently not all disks are sufficiently conductive and those that aren't will never form stars. Some disks remain...disks.

Above, the far side of the Moon. It's cratered more than the side facing us, but that's what you would expect of the side facing outer space. What people want to know is how come it's not covered by smooth, dark, volcanic maria (seas) like the near side. The answer appears to  be that the Lunar crust on our side is simply thinner for some reason.

Here's an odd one: a distant asteroid named "Chaklido" has just been discovered to have rings like Saturn. Chaklido is 250 km in diameter.


ibcf ("sugarrush") said...

Holy smokes, that top photo is amazing!

Eddie Fitzgerald said...

Sugarrush: Yeah, it's an impressive statue. It's made of pewter I think. I forget what pewter is made of. Maybe lead mixed with clay? l'm just guessing.

ibcf said...

Actually, I meant the volcano with the lightning!

But I do like that snazzy wolfie statue too! I think pewter is lead and tin.


Eddie Fitzgerald said...

Sugar: Lead and tin? That sounds right.