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5 December 2023

Over at https://www.livescience.com/space/astronomy/strange-object-trapped-between-saturn-and-uranus-is-transforming-before-our-eyes … a distant comet trapped between the orbits of Saturn and Uranus seems to be accompanied by a transforming disc of icy dust, observations reveal. The disc of dust appears to be capable of shape shifting. However, astronomers only have a shadowy view of the object. It is in fact a centaur – a comet or asteroid. Occasionally it does outgas like a comet, and is Bill Napier’s favoured object that wreaked havoc on earth from 40,000 years ago until around 4000 years ago. Centaurs are little understood – which is why this one, Chiron, is an object of interest.

Meanwhile, at https://www.livescience.com/space/the-sun/impossible-orange-auroras-spotted-in-uk-after-solar-storm-slams-into-earth … rarely seen orange auroras were photographed in the sky above Aberdeenshire in Scotland. This followed a recent CME that struck the top of the atmosphere, breaching the magnetosphere. The solar storm was described as originating in a canyon of fire on the face of the Sun. See also https://spaceweather.com … archive, Nov 25th, 2023. The CME launched itself from a massive loop of plasma – out of a solar prominence. It was flung into space, leaving behind the canyon of fire.

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