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Celebrating the Mars Robots that Could

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

Release Date: 02/07/2024

Early Black Holes Formed Before Stars? show art Early Black Holes Formed Before Stars?

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

One of the unexpected realities of JWST is the discovery that we have really been asking the wrong questions in many astronomy areas. For instance: we generally asked how supermassive black holes and galaxies formed, with a basic assumption that these things happened in some interrelated process. We thought stellar mass black holes came from stars and that there might have been tiny primordial black holes that evaporated away, but that was it. Closed case. Black holes formed with all the normal structures we experience today. Except that now, JWST’s observations require us to find a way to...

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Yes, Scientists DO Look at the (Dark Energy Survey) Data show art Yes, Scientists DO Look at the (Dark Energy Survey) Data

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

Every time I get the digital “why can’t you scientists just look at the data” lecture, I wonder what people think scientists do. All we do is look at data, and when that data tells us our understanding of the universe is wrong, we’re pretty good at accepting the data and throwing out our false understandings… even when the data makes our life a whole lot harder. Such is the case with the accelerating rate of expansion of the Universe...

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Celebrating the Mars Robots that Could show art Celebrating the Mars Robots that Could

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

Robots on Mars have a long history of exceeding all possible expectations. From Spirit and Opportunity lasting far beyond their planned 90-day missions to Ingenuity lasting 72 flights out of a planned five, these craft have become so beloved that we mourn their missions ending. Today, while we recognize NASA's Day of Remembrance, we also celebrate all the Mars missions that have done more than expected.

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The Compass (Sometimes... Kinda) Points North show art The Compass (Sometimes... Kinda) Points North

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

If you take a compass and follow its pointy little needle, you will end up in Northern Canada but not at the North Pole. If you have a boat, you'll end up on Ellesmere Island wondering where Santa is hiding. The fact that the rotational north pole of the Earth and the magnetic pole of the Earth don’t align means that if you want to actually get to the Earth’s rotational North Pole - the one the pole sticks out of on your globe - you have to look up corrections online and veer a little bit in whatever direction the correction happens to be at the moment. And if you are catching this show...

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Spooky Season Space Images show art Spooky Season Space Images

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

From October 25, 2023: Around our parent collaboration, CosmoQuest, Halloween is, hands-down, the most beloved season of the year. Costumes are worn. Yards are decorated. We are here for all the strangers that knock on our door - the weirdos, the witches, and the oh-so-many werewolves - and there will be as much candy as we can afford given out. We know we are not the only ones. With about a week to go, we know that any day now, NASA, ESA, ESO, and others will begin releasing their spooky season images. There will be nebulae cropped with the contrast adjusted just so to reveal witches' hats,...

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Making Anti-Matter... Matter show art Making Anti-Matter... Matter

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

In this episode, we look at what tree rings can teach us about past earthquakes, and how well machine learning can identify life, like trees, from carbon-rich materials that were never alive to distant galaxies and spinning black holes. We even take a deep dive into anti-matter, but not a literal deep dive… just a conceptual deep dive.

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Whales and (Possible) Space Whales show art Whales and (Possible) Space Whales

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

As the Thanksgiving leftovers reach the stage of possibly gaining intelligence in the back of our refrigerators, we’re going to take a look at the origins of life, how we might find simple life on icy moons, and even how we can practice learning to communicate with other civilizations by chatting up a humpback whale.

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Blast From the Past: Watch the Annular Eclipse on October 14! show art Blast From the Past: Watch the Annular Eclipse on October 14!

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

When we headed into recording this episode, I didn’t know if there would be a government shutdown or not, and I have to admit, on Saturday, September 30, I spent more than a few hours binge-watching TV shows while frequently updating my news feeds. This episode would have looked very different with a shutdown. Since we got a budget, today’s episode focuses on science. In the first segment, I get to talk about something I never thought I’d even read about -- the effects of spawning anchovies on energy dissipation in the ocean. Along with that fishy story, we have news from the Mars...

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Solar Cycle to the Maximum, 2025 show art Solar Cycle to the Maximum, 2025

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

Researchers currently think solar maximum - when the Sun is most active - will occur sometime in late 2024 to early 2025. With this cycle, we will experience just what a good blast of solar radiation can do to the small sats, CanSats, and other satellites in low-earth orbit. If history is to be listened to, it’s only a matter of time before a solar event wreaks havoc on satellites and our ground-based society.

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Planetary Formation Leads to Strange New Worlds show art Planetary Formation Leads to Strange New Worlds

EVSN: Escape Velocity Space News

We keep tweaking our format a little bit every episode, trying to find the right mix for YouTube, podcasts, and now, short-form video. We think we the setup is on the mark now and thank you for your patience as we made adjustments. Soon, we will have content to share on TikTok and Reels. For now, enjoy this week's deep dive into planetary formation and all the ways scientists have tried to explain stellar systems. (This episode was originally released in video format on December 1, 2023.)

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Robots on Mars have a long history of exceeding all possible expectations. From Spirit and Opportunity lasting far beyond their planned 90-day missions to Ingenuity lasting 72 flights out of a planned five, these craft have become so beloved that we mourn their missions ending. Today, while we recognize NASA's Day of Remembrance, we also celebrate all the Mars missions that have done more than expected.