Category Archives: Science

A Non-Fiction Must Read — Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

I’ve read some great books lately. One that stands out as a bookshelf keeper is a non-fiction work by the renowned historian, Yuval Noah Harari–Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. This was a New York Times best seller, and Amazon’s … Continue reading

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Apply Now: Astronauts Wanted, Training Provided

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Want to be an astronaut? NASA is taking applications. Recently named the best place to work in the federal government for the fourth year in a row, NASA is looking for the best candidates to work in the best job … Continue reading

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Juno Burns for Jupiter

NASA’s solar-powered Juno spacecraft successfully executed a maneuver to adjust its flight path today, refining its trajectory to set the stage for Juno’s arrival at Jupiter five months and a day from now. “This is the first of two trajectory … Continue reading

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The Search for Intelligence is Also the Search for Knowledge

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We’re finding planets left and right. But so far, nobody interesting to talk to. Still, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (“SETI”) continues. I see SETI’s fundamental outlook as something like this: “With all that space out there, there must be … Continue reading

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On Certainty, Assumptions, and Carbon Dating

Carbon dating is used to deduce the age of organic material–i.e., formerly living thing. The technique hinges on Carbon 14, a radioactive isotope of Carbon that decays at a steady rate. Organisms capture a certain amount of Carbon 14 from … Continue reading

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Peering into the Paleo Mist

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What do we know about humanity’s Paleolithic past? As a culture, we are aware of the diet inspired by Paleolithic eating habits. We are familiar with some of the art that has survived on durable surfaces for millennia. Anthropologists and … Continue reading

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Swift Spots its 1000th Gamma Ray Burst

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Several days ago, the robotic spacecraft named Swift detected the 1,000th GRB as a sudden pulse of gamma rays arising from a location toward the constellation Eridanus. The burst is named GRB 151027B. It was the second detected burst of … Continue reading

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Planetary Ingress and Egress: Gravity Modification

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We previously discussed one way of improving our ability to move back and forth between space and the planetary surface–the space elevator. The concept is an engineering project of mammoth proportions which, if things come together and it actually works, … Continue reading

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Planetary Ingress and Egress: The Space Elevator

We must find a better way to move ourselves, and our stuff, into space. Rocket boosters are messy, expensive, dangerous and wasteful. The potential solutions include space elevators, high-altitude rail guns, and gravity-modification technology. There are engineering problems with each–including the … Continue reading

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The March of Physics

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I would love to go back to school. Not that I haven’t been fortunate enough to enjoy more than my share already. But there are still subjects I wish I knew better. I think if I could take yet another … Continue reading

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