Not Pluto (it was downgraded in 2006). What do you want to bet that the Big Ninth will turn out to be an instance of fine-tuning?
If the Moon was really formed when the early Earth was hit by a Mars-sized object, it should mostly be the detritus of that object. But it is mostly Earth stuff. So…
We know far more about that now than we did then.
Two independent teams of astronomers recently looked into the matter: Astronomers have detected and measured the mass and/or orbital features of 3,869 planets in 2,887 planetary systems beyond the solar system. This ranks as a staggering rate of discovery, given that the first confirmed detection of a planet orbiting another hydrogen-fusion-burning star was as recent […]
It turns out that other solar systems are not shedding much light on how ours came to be: But as the menagerie of young planetary systems grows, researchers are struggling to square their observations with current theories on how our Solar System and others formed. Such ideas have been in turmoil ever since astronomers started […]
You read the title right. Recently, some astronomers thought they had spotted an “exomoon,” a moon orbiting an exoplanet. There are, of course, bound to be some. But now Gizmodo introduces us to the concept of the moonmoon, a submoon orbiting a moon. One research team is taking on the possibility: The team’s short analysis […]