space
Uranus Is Even Freakier Than We Thought

If David Lynch designed a planet, it would be Uranus. Much like every episode of Twin Peaks: The Return, Uranus is fiercely unique and weirdly endearing, even though it makes no fucking sense. The planet’s spin axis is 98 degrees, so it essentially rotates on its side — and while we have some idea as to what could have caused that, no one’s really sure. That’s just how Uranus rolls, literally. Read More >>

science
Scientists Solve Ancient ‘Bright Night’ Mystery With New Satellite Data

Humans are pretty jaded these days. We can write most of the strange phenomena we see off as science (or we honestly don’t care). But when Roman philosophers like Pliny the Elder witnessed moonless nights glow bright like the day, it definitely made an impression. Others since then have been awestruck by these “bright nights,” too. Read More >>

space
A Mysterious Mars-Sized Object Could Be Hiding at the Edge of Our Solar System

It’s been about 11 years since Pluto was demoted to dwarf planet status, leaving a 1,473 mile (2,370 kilometres)-size void in our hearts. Since then, the hunt for Planet X—aptly renamed Planet 9—has grown into an international movement to find such an object in the Kuiper Belt beyond Neptune’s orbit. Now, scientists Kat Volk and Renu Malhotra from the University of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory are upping the ante—they suggest that a completely different, tenth planetary-mass object is hiding somewhere in the Kuiper Belt as well. Is someone keeping track of all these goddamn hypothetical planets? Read More >>

space
Jupiter Now Has 69 Moons

Jupiter has just delivered the news we desperately need right now. In addition to being the biggest, oldest planet in the solar system, it turns out Jupe has been hiding two moons from us all these years. Recently, a group of astronomers spotted the pair of wayward satellites, bringing the number of Jupiter’s known moons to 69. Read More >>

space
Jupiter Is A Swole Grandpa

Of the eight planets in our solar system, Jupiter is indubitably the most swole. It is large, with a radius of 43,440 miles (69,911 kilometres). It also has a bit of a rage problem, as the planet’s constantly shifting storms are notoriously chaotic. While the Jovian origin story has always been a bit of a mystery, a new study suggests the weird world got very large very quickly, and not from crushing protein shakes. Read More >>

space
Humans Heading to Mars Could Face a Disturbingly High Cancer Risk

Practically everyone who likes space and has lots of money is trying to get to Mars in the near future. But before anyone reaches the Red Planet, there are plenty of concerns to mull over, most notably that our bodies were not built to live in a barren litter box with a thin atmosphere. But the journey to Mars is an equal concern. An unnerving new study suggests that the trip to Mars could put passengers at a higher risk to develop cancer—possibly two times greater than what experts previously thought. Read More >>

science
Scientists Weigh a Star Using Gravity, Proving Einstein Wrong by Proving Him Right

Albert Einstein’s theory of gravity, called general relativity, is probably the best physics theory ever formulated. It just keeps working, often for things Einstein himself didn’t believe, like the accelerating expansion of the universe. Scientists only just proved some of its crazy predictions, like gravitational waves. Read More >>

space
This Freakishly Hot Exoplanet is Totally Screwed

Approximately 650 light-years away, a Jupiter-like planet is caught in an uncomfortably tight orbit around its toasty hot host star. Featuring a dayside temperature of 7,800 degrees Fahrenheit, this unfortunate planet is literally vaporising, and it has sprouted a distinctly comet-like tail. Astronomers say the planet—the hottest giant exoplanet ever discovered—is not long for this world. Read More >>

space
The Moon’s South Pole May Be Icier Than We Realised

For decades, scientists have wondered if frost persists inside the dark and cold craters of the Moon’s poles. The recent discovery of unusually bright areas near the Moon’s south pole suggests this very well may be the case. But as a potential source of water for aspiring lunar colonists, the quantity of this surface frost may come as a disappointment. Read More >>

space
A Wild Origin Story For Saturn’s Most Mysterious Moon

Enceladus is having a moment: ever since NASA announced it had all the basic ingredients to support life, people have become interested in the unusual Saturnian moon. In addition to hiding a warm subterranean ocean beneath its crust, Enceladus produces enough energy from its hydrothermal vents that could hypothetically support alien microbes. To add another layer of weirdness to this strange world, new research suggests Enceladus may have tipped over long ago. Read More >>

astronomy
NASA’s Lunar Orbiter Survived an Impact With a Tiny Meteor

Three years ago, a camera aboard NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) was struck by a tiny meteoroid as it was capturing an image of the lunar surface. By studying the resulting zigzag patterns, scientists have been able to estimate the speed and size of the offending object. Read More >>

space
Let These Mind-Blowing Galaxy Simulations Melt Your Face Off

Everyone knows the cure for existential ennui is the Three P’s: Pint (of ice cream), Pink Floyd, and Pretty space pictures. While we can’t provide you with ice cream or a psychedelic experience, we can offer you some truly sublime galaxy simulations that are sure to fill the void inside you — for now. Read More >>

space
A New Look at Proxima b’s Potential Climate Offers Hope for Future Colonists

Ever since astronomers announced the discovery of an Earth-sized exoplanet less than five light years down the cosmic street, the question on every good space cadet’s mind has been whether or not we can colonise it. We’re not going to know if Proxima b is habitable until we can point some very powerful telescopes at it, which won’t happen until next year. But until then, scientists are playing around with models—and one such modelling effort recently came to some promising conclusions. Read More >>

space
We’re Ignoring Women Astronauts’ Health At Our Peril

WASHINGTON, D.C. — It’s 7pm, and the Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University, which was packed with investors, aerospace tycoons, and scientists just hours ago, has dwindled to a dedicated few. It’s a very different crowd than the folks who came earlier in the day to watch Buzz Aldrin and other space veterans speak — for one thing, a group of Girl Scouts has crowded the front row. For the first time all day, two women have taken the stage at the Humans to Mars summit in North America's capital city, Washington, D.C. Read More >>