'Planet X?' Odd Orbits In Solar System May Mean Unseen Object, Astronomer Conjectures

From The Huffington Post

Posted: 05/22/2012 5:44 pm Updated: 05/25/2012 4:14 pm

By: Natalie Wolchover 
Published: 05/22/2012 12:54 PM EDT on Lifes Little Mysteries


Planet X 


A planet four times the size of Earth may be skirting the edges of the solar system beyond Pluto, according to new research. Too distant to be easily spotted by Earth-based telescopes, the unseen planet could be gravitationally tugging on small icy objects past Neptune, helping explain the mystery of those objects' peculiar orbits.

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Astronomy Mysteries: 8 Space Science Questions Scientists Still Can't Explain


Modern Astronomy 7


From  Huffington Post

Posted: 06/01/2012 12:09 pm;

Updated: 06/01/2012 12:09 pm

By: Staff 

Published: 05/31/2012 02:13 PM EDT on


The vastness of space and the puzzling nature of the cosmic objects that occupy it provides no shortage of material for astronomers to ponder.

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Milky Way, Andromeda Galaxy To Collide In 4 Billion Years, NASA Says

From Huffington Post


05/31/12 05:06 PM ET


Milky Way Andromeda

Milky Way, Andromeda Galaxy will eventually collide, NASA says.

WASHINGTON -- Don't worry about when the world as we know it might end. NASA has calculated that our entire Milky Way galaxy will crash into a neighboring galaxy with a direct head-on hit – in 4 billion years.

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Scientists find an alien world 'like no planet we know of'
























GJ1214b, shown in this artist’s view, is a super-Earth orbiting a red dwarf star 40 light-years from Earth. New observations from the Hubble Space Telescope show that it is a waterworld enshrouded by a thick, steamy atmosphere. GJ 1214b represents a new type of planet, like nothing seen in the solar system or any other planetary system currently known.

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Supermoon Pictures

Supermoon River
Supermoon River

Photograph by Emanuel LopesMy Shot


On Saturday the moon (pictured over Lisbon, Portugal's Tagus River) made its closest approach to Earth in 18 years—making the so-called supermoon the biggest full moon in years. (Get the full story of the supermoon.)

The monthly full moon always looks like a big disk, but because its orbit is egg-shaped, there are times when the moon is at perigee—its shortest distance from Earth in the roughly monthlong lunar cycle—or at apogee, its farthest distance from Earth.


Likewise, because the size of the moon's orbit varies slightly, each perigee is not always the same distance away from Earth.

Saturday's supermoon was just 221,566 miles (356,577 kilometers) away from Earth—making the supermoon about 20 percent brighter and 15 percent bigger than a regular full moon, said Anthony Cook, astronomical observer for theGriffith Observatory in Los Angeles.


Before the supermoon, astronomer Geza Gyuk said, "Look for the full moon as it rises above the eastern horizon as the sun sets below the western horizon—it will be a beautiful and inspiring sight."


That's advice a lot of photographers, including National Geographic fans, one of whom contributed this picture, apparently took to heart.


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