Using data collected by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope, scientists have found four free-floating, or rogue, planets near the core of the Milky Way. These planets formed in discs in other planetary systems and were thrown out by gravitational interactions with larger planets. Plus, the early solar system, including ancient Earth, Jupiter’s chemistry, and Mercury’s core.
Jupiter’s moon Europa, an icy world with a subsurface ocean that interests astrobiologists, may actually be hot enough to melt the interior rock and create volcanoes on the ocean floor. Plus, Ryugu, giant planets, fossil discoveries, Martian glaciers, and this week’s What’s Up!
New research looking to explain the “missing” portion of baryonic matter in the universe managed to locate the material lurking in intergalactic space as hot, low-density gas. Plus, supercontinents, Enceladus, and weird earthquakes.
We’re going to kick off the year with a look at upcoming night sky events, as well as scheduled spacecraft milestones and exciting space flights. Expect to hear about planets, eclipses, space tourism, crewed space missions, and a new ground-based telescope getting ready to go online. This year sounds potentially exciting in a bunch of good ways!