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C/2019 Q4 (Borisov): A Likely Interstellar Comet

What appears to be an interstellar comet is heading into the Solar System, with perihelion likely on December 10 of this year, a date that could change as orbital parameters continue to be firmed up. The natural comparison is with ‘Oumuamua, first discovered two years ago and now well on its w...

Water Vapor Detection on a ‘Super-Earth’

We’re beginning to probe the atmospheres of planets other than gas giants, a step forward that the next generation of space- and ground-based instruments will only accelerate. This morning we have word that the habitable zone ‘super-Earth’ eight times as massive as Earth orbiting the star K2-18 ha...

A New Explanation for Lakes on Titan

The vast amount of data returned to Earth from the Cassini mission continues to pay off with new research angles, a process that will continue for years to come. Today we learn of a possible explanation for an odd feature of some methane-filled lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan. As viewed in Cassini ra...

Internal Pressure and Planet Formation

Our thinking on how planetary systems form includes the accretion of rocky bodies within a disk surrounding a young star, and we’re examining such disks in numerous systems, such as the well studied Beta Pictoris. But the idea of accretion leaves many issues unsettled, such as what happens whe...

Tales from Iceland: Extreme Solar Systems IV

Reykjavik is an old haunt of mine, a favorite place to which I have not returned in all too long. I was delighted, then, to hear from Angelle Tanner, who in August attended the Extreme Solar Systems IV conference there. I had the pleasure of getting to know Dr. Tanner in Knoxville when we bo...

Looking for Lurkers: A New Way to do SETI

SETI, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, has kept its focus on the stars, through examination of electromagnetic wavelengths from optical to radio signals. But Jim Benford has been advocating that we consider near-Earth objects as potential SETI targets, prompted by Ronald Bracewe...

Spectroscopic Evidence of a Possible Exomoon

It shouldn’t surprise us that first discoveries can be extreme. Consider that the first main sequence exoplanets we detected were ‘hot Jupiters.’ Nobody expected these (unless you discount John Barnes and Buzz Aldrin in Encounter with Tiber, and Greg Matloff, who advised them — see Probing Ult...

Is Enceladus Prebiotic?

Centauri Dreams regular Alex Tolley here examines a new paper with a novel take on Saturn’s moon Enceladus. Tempting us with its geysers and the organic compounds Cassini detected in their spray, Enceladus offers the prospect of life within its internal ocean. But are there other explanations for ...

A Major Step for the James Webb Space Telescope

The James Webb Space Telescope has been assembled for the first time, meaning its two halves — the spacecraft and the telescope — have been connected, following up earlier testing in which the two parts were temporarily connected by ground wiring. The latter took place almost a year ago, in Se...

HR 5183 b: Pushing Radial Velocity Techniques Deeper into a Stellar System

Radial velocity methods for detecting exoplanets keep improving. We’ve gone from the first main sequence star with a planet (51 Pegasi b) in 1995 to over 450 planets detected with RV, a technique that traces minute variations in starlight as a star nudges closer, then further from us as it i...

Upwelling Oceans: Modeling Exoplanet Habitability

We usually talk about habitability in binary form — either a planet is habitable or it is not, defining the matter with a ‘habitable zone’ in which liquid water could exist on the surface. Earth is, of course, the gold standard, for we haven’t detected life on any other world. But it is con...
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Beats by Dre Presents: Neymar Jr., Harry Kane, Mesut Özil, and Benjamin Mendy in The Defiant Mixtape, Vol. I - Directed by Guy Ritchie

Beats by Dre Presents: Neymar Jr., Harry Kane, Mesut Özil, and Benjamin Mendy in The Defiant Mixtape, Vol. I - Directed by Guy Ritchie: When your time comes, you have two choices. You can be the kid no one's heard of. Or you can be the kid no one saw coming. This is the Defiant Mixtape, Vol. I. #MadeDefiant . . . . Watch The Defiant Mixtape Vol. I directed by Guy Ritchie ft. Neymar Jr., Harry Kane, Mesut Özil, Benjamin Mendy, Eden Hazard, Fyodor Smolov, Patrice Evra, Thierry Henry, Raul Jimenez & Serena Williams. Voiced by Paul Anderson.