The Nightly News
An Astronomy blog by Joe Bauman, Salt Lake City
Blog 62: Astronomy in the time of fire
Joe Bauman
17
September
2018

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  1. Blog 64: Nature's laws
    07 Oct, 2018
    Blog 64: Nature's laws
    During my years as a newspaper science reporter, I sometimes asked astronomers and physicists a question that still puzzles me: natural laws govern everything from radiation released by atomic bombs to the combinations of molecules, from galaxy shapes to ripples in a pond -- were these rules present at the time of the Big Bang, before a single atom had formed? That is, do the rules predate the objects they govern? A saying by the rebel priest John Ball (who lived from about 1338 until his
  2. Blog 63: NASA gets serious about alien civilizations
    27 Sep, 2018
    Blog 63: NASA gets serious about alien civilizations
    As I write, NASA is in the midst of a three-day workshop in Houston discussing ways to detect alien civilizations. Thomas Zurbuchen, the agency’s associate administrator in the Science Mission Directorate, tweeted on Tuesday: "I’m excited to announce that #NASA is taking the 1st steps to explore ways to search for life advanced enough to create technosignatures: signs or signals, which if observed, would let us infer the existence of technological life elsewhere in the universe. …" The NASA
  3. Blog 61: The Moon
    07 Sep, 2018
    Blog 61: The Moon
    On September 30, 1854, readers of the Illustrated London News were treated to an astonishing view of something they had seen all their lives but never in such detail, the Moon. Assembled from photographs by John Hartnup, astronomer at the Liverpool Observatory, and by the Photographic Society of Liverpool, the double-page woodcut showed maria, craters, mountain ranges and debris rays. Most of these geological features weren't well understood at the time. Speaking of a lecture by Professor John
  4. Blog 60: Secrets of the first galaxies
    27 Aug, 2018
    Blog 60: Secrets of the first galaxies
    The first galaxies formed in two stages, according to a scientific paper published Aug. 16 -- and some of them remain in the Milky Way's orbit. Mysterious "dark matter" played a vital role in the process, the paper maintains. Dark matter is the name given to material or an effect that was present after the Big Bang and about which little is known other than its gravitational pull on ordinary matter. Findings are presented in "The Imprint of Cosmic Reionization on the Luminosity Function of