Cosmology Culture Exoplanets Intelligent Design Physics

Stephen Hawkings’ views outside physics were more noted than notable

That’s a common problem when we ask great figures their opinion about things they haven’t studied. From a review of Stephen Hawking’s (1942–2018) last book (or the last book that could be put together plausibly under his name), Brief Answers to the Big Questions: Because of the likelihood of a nuclear confrontation or an environmental catastrophe, […]

Astronomy Exoplanets Intelligent Design

Astronomers: First possible exomoon is the size of Neptune, and orbiting a “Jupiter”

An MIT astronomer is 75% certain that an object previously suspected of being an Intro of exomoon (a moon orbiting an exoplanets) really is that: The first confirmed detection of an exomoon would mark a milestone in exploring planetary systems throughout the Galaxy. It would, among other things, allow scientists to test ideas of moon […]

Exoplanets Extraterrestrial life Intelligent Design

ET life: We should look for planets like Earth’s past, not it’s present

Suggested at New Scientist: There may be life out there that was like life on Earth when Earth was a very different environment: In the 4.5 billion years our planet has existed, it has experienced dramatic transformations: ice ages and warming periods, times when the atmosphere was impossible to breathe, when large areas were desert, […]

Exoplanets Extraterrestrial life Fine tuning Intelligent Design

Claim: A planet does not need plate tectonics to sustain life

Plus, a friend offers a reply. From ScienceDaily: There may be more habitable planets in the universe than we previously thought, according to Penn State geoscientists, who suggest that plate tectonics — long assumed to be a requirement for suitable conditions for life — are in fact not necessary. When searching for habitable planets or […]

Exoplanets Extraterrestrial life Intelligent Design

SETI reacts to the new study that says not to wait up for extraterrestrials

From SETI’s Seth Shostak, who surely doesn’t welcome this news, at NBC: A recent paper by three researchers at the University of Oxford is throwing shade on those who feel confident that the cosmos is thick with extraterrestrials. … If we own up to the true extent of these uncertainties and do the requisite math, […]

Exoplanets Extraterrestrial life Intelligent Design

At Forbes: Maybe fine-tuning doesn’t matter as much as some claim. Many planets might support life…

From Ethan Siegel at Forbes: Based on everything we know, it seems like the conditions that make life possible are a lot more diverse and flexible than most people would expect. … Take Earth’s large moon, for example. The gravitational forces from it keep our planet rotating on the same axis over time. Our present […]

Exoplanets Extraterrestrial life Fine tuning Intelligent Design

Exoplanet has stable axial tilt, like Earth – but Earth has help from the moon and other planets

The reality that earth is fine-tuned for life screams out at us from stories that seem to make a point of not emphasizing the fact. From ScienceDaily: The researchers suggest that Kepler-186f’s axial tilt is very stable, much like the Earth, making it likely that it has regular seasons and a stable climate. The Georgia […]

Exoplanets Extraterrestrial life Intelligent Design

From Universe Today: Do icy worlds have enough chemicals to support life?

From Matt Williams at Universe Today: For decades, scientists have believed that there could be life beneath the icy surface of Jupiter’s moon Europa. Since that time, multiple lines of evidence have emerged that suggest that it is not alone. Indeed, within the Solar System, there are many “ocean worlds” that could potentially host life, […]

Astronomy Culture Exoplanets Geo-strategic issues Intelligent Design

Retro: Futurist Malcolm Forbes (1919-1990) on the future of space exploration. Which is where we are living now.

Suzan Mazur has republished her wide-ranging interview with the Renaissance man (in an age of specialization), first published in Omni in 1981, at Oscillations. The interview as a whole offers insights on how space exploration was viewed back then (for example, habitable planets were not top of mind): Suzan Mazur: Since every last mineral can […]