Astronomy news

Swallowing the Stars

At ... according to Big Bang theory and a computer simulation of the evolving universe the rate of formation of new stars has declined and will continue to decline if the pattern generated by their computer model is to be taken at face value (published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society).

Lightning and the cult of the heavenly twins

This is posted in astronomy because it is assumed that at some point in the past the heavenly twins are derived from a real phenomenon rather than the dubious source of pre-Jewish and pre-Christian religion, as evidenced by the fact they had developed into protective deities rather than their subjective origin as destructive features of the natural world.

That man Eddy again ... and was Ptolemy a fraud?

I've been flicking through the archive of the late Janek Pietron and have come across some interesting papers that he stored for future reference. In a review of EC Krupps, In Search of Ancient Astronomies, published in the journal Archaeoastronomy (see or in 1978, Eddy is mentioned in an overview of Native American archaeoastronomy north of Mexico. The reviewer, Ronald Hicks of Ball State University, generally finds his work agreeable.

The Sword of Orion

At ... astrophysicists have investigated a cluster of oddly behaving stars in the Sword of Orion - by using, in their words, 'sophisticated computer modelling programmes'. The Orion Nebular Cluster, as the anomaly is known, they have determined, may be held together by the pull of a black hole that their models indicate is up to 200 times the mass of the Sun.

Asteroid Investigations

Japanese scientists propose in the journal Nature Geoscience that a large asteroid struck the Moon in the remote past and created the geological feature known as Oceanus Procellarum (or in common speak, Ocean of Storms). This large basin has a flattened feature stretching 1800 miles and it is being suggested it came about as a result of a collision. Over time, subsequent asteroid and meteorite strikes have blurred he edges of the impact zone - see

The Sun and the Climate Part Two

In response to the Oct 22nd posting, The Sun and the Climate, the mathematical explanation of Bode's Law may actually have already been worked out - by Robert Bass. He was due to speak at the SIS conference on 'Cosmic Catastrophes - Asteroids, Comets and Planets' held at Fitzwilliam College in Cambridge in 2007, in order to present his explanation of the Titus-Bode Law. Unfortunately he had to withdraw and we never learnt what it was.

The Sun remains quiet - but what will happen to the climate

An interesting post on the quiet Sun can be found at which was reposted on Tall Bloke's Talk Shop at ... interesting times, as they say.

Red Giants

At (scroll down page to October 13th) or ... apparently, a group of nuclear physics theorists are claiming they have solved the mystery of the red giants - a class of stars they say that did not fit into the consensus model of the universe. Since the Big Banged the universe has been evolving and one of its major components is carbon 12 - but how did it get here?

Loopholes on the Sun

At ... a paper in the journal Solar Physics is based on data gleaned from the Hinude telescope, which is proving to be such a boon. Whereas 'defenders of the faith' might airbrush aside what is not known with a simple flourish of the arms and mouth, scientists are actually pushing away at the secrets the Sun might yet be hiding. For example, in this pape, the 'slow' soslar wind is said to come from a surface full of closed magnetic structures that should #'prevent' gases from escaping.