Astronomy news

The other comet is also set to cause a stir

At ... comet Siding Spring, the other comet of interest this autumn, will pass by Mars in October, just 132,000km away - which is the equivalent of a comet passing the Earth at one third the distance away from the Moon. A spokesman is quoted, 'we hope to witness two atmospheres colliding'. Planets have atmospheres (Mars is on the thin side) but so do comets, he claims - only it is called a coma and is capable of stretching to the width of Jupiter.

Erupting Filaments

A magnetic filament winding down the face of the Sun has been compared to a canyon of fire at August 17th. It appeared two days previously, launching a CME towards the Earth (expected to arrive on Monday). The web site has a video clip of the appearance and eruption of the filament.

The names of the gods

Victor Clube has an article in SIS Review V:4, 'Cometary Catastrophes and the ideas of Immanuel Velikovsky' and whilst admitting the Clube and Napier theory as outlined in 'The Cosmic Serpent' was by no means perfect and was probably strewn with gaffs of one kind or another, the basic idea that comets rather than planets were the agents of disaster (and more significantly, the meteor streams produced by progenitor comets) were sound.

Barycentric solar effects

I did some earlier posts on Rhodes Fairbridge and the barycentre of the solar system - which is not always within the body of the Sun. The orbit of the Sun has a distinct cycle around the barycentre according to Fairbridge - and one that is close to 100,000 years. This cycle is not mentioned in this link ... ... but it does add an even more intriguing idea to the mix.

The Moon and the Jet Stream

At ... begins by noting a lurid headline from the Daily Express concerning a weather forecast made by Piers Corbyn. Apparently, has has said we are in for a heat wave in August. The jet stream is to blame - see also - and do read the comments at Tall Blokes talk shop. For example, Clive Best directs us to his blog at ... where it is claimed atmospheric tweak the jet stream.

Bubbles in the Sky

At ... we have two bubbles towering above and below our galaxy - see image (courtesy of NASA)

Comet Coma 67P

At ... we learn that a distinct coma surrounds comet 67P (otherwise known as Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko).

    the hazy circular structure on the right and the centre of the coma are artifacts due overexposure of the nucleus. The image was taken by the Osiris camera onboard the Rosetta spacecraft on July 25th (see also

The Moon's Flat Spot

At ... opens by reporting on new research that claims the Moon's core is surrounded by liquid which in turn is caused by Earth's gravity. The blog author then moves on to the report from a week or so ago that held the gravitational tug of the Earth has produced a tidal feature in the rock face of the Moon - see

Mystery of the slowing rotation of Saturn

The Cassini spacecraft took readings of the day length of Saturn - and the length of time it takes Saturn to complete each rotation. It is six minutes longer than the rotational period measured by Voyager I and Voyager 2 in 1980 and 1981. Go to ... and then do to a post of last years,

Saturn Aurora

NASA have released an animation of an aurora on Saturn which is fascinating to watch - a link is provided by Tall Bloke at