Tag - discovery

Science

Welcome To The Furthest Object Found In Our Solar System

The galaxy that we live in is indeed quite a wonderful thing. Take a look around the world that we inhabit, and things like the solar system immediately feel very interesting indeed. All it takes is a quick look around to help you see that we are very much in a vast expanse of space, with so much to be found. Recent probes and studies, though, found what is being called “Farout” – the single further object we’ve found in our solar system.

This latest discovery comes after a team of international astronomers found the object located around 11.15 billion miles from the sun. This small, rounded object sits around 17.95 billion km away, then, and currently carries a rich, pink hue. The discovery was made using the Las Campanas Observatory in Chile.

310 miles in diameter, this interesting discovery is a landmark moment as it becomes the first object discovered to be more than 100 Astronomical Units (AU) from our own star. For reference, 1 AU is the distance from the Earth to the Sun. in total, this sits around 120 AU, while our furthest find yet until now was Eris the dwarf planet found at around 96 AU.

If you want a good example of just how far this is, Pluto is around 34 AU!

An Incredible Discovery

It’s also very interesting as it brings us into contact with something much further out than Pluto. It would be something very interesting to hear more about, especially as the orbits of these objects appear to be influenced via the gravity of a large-scale planet. Some, then, estimate that this could be the infamous Planet 9 which could, in theory, sit as far back as 200 AU from the Sun.

Speaking about this was co-discoverer Scott Sheppard, part of the Carnegie Institution for Science, who said: “2018 VG18 is much more distant and slower moving than any other observed Solar System object, so it will take a few years to fully determine its orbit.

But it was found in a similar location on the sky to the other known extreme Solar System objects, suggesting it might have the same type of orbit that most of them do. The orbital similarities shown by many of the known small, distant Solar System bodies was the catalyst for our original assertion that there is a distant, massive planet at several hundred AU shepherding these smaller objects.”

While this might just be one smaller discovery, it does create much excitement about what we might find if we continue to look further beyond our present limits.

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The galaxy that we live in is indeed quite a wonderful thing. Take a look around the world that we inhabit, and things like the solar system immediately feel very interesting indeed. All it takes is a quick look around to help you see that we are very much in...

Science

Scientists: New Mineral Could End Global Warning

A team of scientists in Canada have created a mineral which strips carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, theoretically ending the threat of climate change to our planet.

Scientists developed an accelerated process to produce magnesite, a mineral which traps greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, at room temperature. “Our work shows two things,” said Project leader Professor Ian Power. “Firstly, we have explained how and how fast magnesite forms naturally. This is a process which takes hundreds to thousands of years in nature at Earth’s surface. The second thing we have done is to demonstrate a pathway which speeds this process up dramatically.”

Magnesite naturally occurs in nature in rock form and is used in jewelry and various industrial processes. Its carbon-storing capacity is already known to scientists. In nature, magnesite takes hundreds of thousands of years to form, however, researchers in the study used tiny polystyrene microspheres to speed up the formation of carbon dioxide grabbing magnesite to just 72 days.

Furthermore, in order to speed up this process, scientists significantly reduced the temperature of the magnesite and added the polystyrene microspheres as a catalyst. They further discovered that the microspheres could be re-used as they were unchanged by the production process, thus making the process all the more efficient. “Using microspheres means that we were able to speed up magnesite formation by orders of magnitude. This process takes place at room temperature, meaning that magnesite production is extremely energy efficient.”

One tonne of magnesite can cut down half a tonne of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This means if experts can somehow mass produce the mineral, they would then be able to reduce carbon dioxide levels dramatically. “This depends on several variables, including the price of carbon and the refinement of the sequestration technology, but we now know that the science makes it do-able.”

In theory, this method would be able to suck carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as it is released. If combined with reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, it would slow down or even reverse the effects of climate change. The findings are based on results presented at the Goldschmidt geochemistry conference in Boston by Professor Ian Power and his team from Trent University, Ontario, Canada.

Climate change, sometimes referred to as global warming, is the theory the planet’s climate is heating up to life-threatening levels. The primary cause of global warming, argue advocates, is man-made carbon dioxide emissions. They claim that carbon dioxide creates a type of thermal blanket around the earth’s atmosphere which traps heat which would otherwise be released into space. Hence, the global push to cut-down on carbon emissions.

The research was funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

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A team of scientists in Canada have created a mineral which strips carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, theoretically ending the threat of climate change to our planet.
Scientists developed an accelerated process to produce magnesite, a mineral which traps...

Vacation

Kayaker Explores Hidden Ghost Ship

When we look around the news, it’s very easy to come across awesome stories that just make us think about the possibilities of the world around us. So many things go undiscovered for years to come, and when they are found it can feel like a whole new world being discovered. For kayakers, though, being able to get out and explore deeper and in more agile circumstance than most boat-users is one of their major advantages.

Romanian kayakers in particular tend to find a lot of awesome stuff when they travel – but one came across something extra special and went to explore it. The Empire’s Strength is an old boat that sits just off the Black Sea coast, close to Costinesti, and has become a regular haunt for those looking to enjoy some exploration.

One kayaker filmed himself making his way through the small cracks and dents within the ship, deciding to risk the potential damage and decay inside to see what awaited inside. Large hidden pieces poking through the water and sharp, torn edges meant that this was no easy trip; wrong moves could be very dangerous indeed.

Even the slightest budge could have forced the decrepit ship to begin falling in on itself, so the kayaker was VERY careful as he edged through each part of the ship, always taking care to explore carefully. The interior was damaged to incredible levels, with the interior being no better than the exterior in terms of visual appeal.

The ship itself was covered in horrible algae, and nothing looked like it could be in any form of useful or even salvageable operation. The ship, though, according to one operator, could have been built by Harland and Wolff, the creators of the famous Titanic.

The ship was a major part of the United Kingdom’ old Ministry of War, serving as a transport ship and to help add a touch of extra bulk and power to the navy of the time. Many boats like it were destroyed and abandoned during the war, and this was no different. While it did survive the war itself, it did not last for too long afterward. It served mostly as a meat transport from Britain to Argentina in the mid-40s.

It was eventually run aground on the Black Sea and was left to rot. Now defunct, it just floats where it is, a floating grave of the past wonders and powers of the British navy and its potential.

While today its nothing more than a husk of something once-special, it makes a wonderful tourist trip for people who are brave enough to make their way in. If you ever find yourself here and have the skills and bravery to kayak in, why not do so? You might find it to be as eye-opening and as enlightening as this kayaker’ video shows!

While the video does not provide anything scary or untoward, it’s nice to see the interior of something that, in operation, was such a glamorous, powerful and important vessel.

When we look around the news, it’s very easy to come across awesome stories that just make us think about the possibilities of the world around us. So many things go undiscovered for years to come, and when they are found it can feel like a whole new world...

Vacation

Discovering the Sterling Hill Mine

When we hear of people finding unique and amazing items hidden away, it’s always easy to doubt the accuracy. How often do people turn up having found something that nobody else? It’s a super-rare feat and for that reason it is quite hard to believe in. However, the Sterling Hill Mine in Ogdensburg, New Jersey, is a fine example of what we can find with a bit of digging deeper underneath the surface overall.

Once a massive mining town, today it’s nothing like its old self. It was once actually a full-on company town for the New Jersey Zinc Company, and it was like that for a long period of time. As you might imagine, this left a bit of a mark on the community. The mine itself was closed down in 1986 and, sensing something of an opportunity, Dick and Bob Hauck chipped in together and bough the mine at a taxation sale.

Becoming a mine and a tourist attraction, it helps to show people about the hard graft of mining labor and, in a way, serves as a reminder to future generations of how hard things once were. At 35 miles along, it’s one of the longest underground structures in the USA. However, much of that 35 miles is rather interesting to come and look into – if you have the time.

Indeed, a 1990 section of the mine was blasted – around 240-feet in length – to help create a fantastic combination of colours. The area, known as Rainbow Tunnel, looks like a rainbow has dripped from above ground and stained the area, such is the vibrant energy of the colours on the wall.

The Skyland Region, though, is home to all manner of wonderful stones – from sapphires and rubies to jewels and gems of all kinds, this is one of the main reasons why people come down to see these amazing crystal combinations.

The mine itself has a long history, going back as far as the 1630s when British settlers dug in hoping to find copper. It was provided to William Alexander, or Lord Stirling, and before long the mine was known as Stirling Hill. Sold on in 1765 to Robert Ogden, it kept changing hands for many years until the NJZC bought it in the late 1800s. however, in the late 1900s it was forced to be sold to the previously mentioned brothers.

Now the Sterling Hill Mine Tour & Museum of Fluorescence, it is a unique and wonderful home to so many stunning and exciting images. The amazing colours that flow through the mines as well as the growing collection of gems throughout just helps to sell the image of a truly wonderful location that, despite its challenging past and poor working conditions, today stands as a wonderful representation of the beauty beneath our own world.

With over 300 kinds of minerals and roughly 10% of all known minerals found in here, it’s a true representation of the unique beauty of nature. From ores that shine through the limestone to beautiful gems that glisten even in the darkness, this is a truly spectacular place to visit for both beauty and history.

When we hear of people finding unique and amazing items hidden away, it’s always easy to doubt the accuracy. How often do people turn up having found something that nobody else? It’s a super-rare feat and for that reason it is quite hard to believe in...