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Over a thousand cosmic explosions in 47 days detected by FAST

An international research team led by Prof. LI Di and Dr. WANG Pei from National Astronomical Observatories of Chinese Academy of Sciences (NAOC) caught an extreme episode of cosmic explosions from Fast Radio Burst (FRB) 121102, using the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST). A total of 1,652 independent bursts were detected within 47 days starting Aug. 29, 2019 (UT).
Fast Radio Burst
Fig. 1 FAST catches a real pulse from FRB 121102.
It is the largest set of FRB events so far, more than the number reported in all other publications combined. Such a burst set allows for the determination, for the first time, of the characteristic energy and energy distribution of any FRB, thus shedding light on the central engine powering FRBs.

These results were published in Nature on Oct. 13, 2021 (US Eastern Time).

FRBs were first detected in 2007. These cosmic explosions can be as short as one-thousandth of a second while producing one year's worth of the Sun's total energy output. The origin of FRBs is still unknown. Although even aliens have been considered in models for FRBs, natural causes are clearly favored by the observations. The recent focuses include exotic hyper-magnetized neutron stars, black holes, and cosmic strings left over from the Big Bang.

Comet 2

The mega-comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein will get as close as Saturn in 2031

Comet Comparison
© Will Gater. Used by permission.
A graphic comparing the size of Comet 2014 UN271 (Bernardinelli-Bernstein) to other solar system objects.
A mega-comet - potentially the largest ever discovered - is heading from the Oort Cloud towards our direction. Estimated to be 100-200 kilometers across, the unusual celestial wanderer will make its closest approach to the Sun in 2031. However, the closest it will come to Earth is to the orbit of Saturn.

Astronomers say Comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein (C/2014 UN271) could be the largest member of the Oort Cloud ever detected, and it is the first comet on an incoming path to be detected so far away.

The graphic above, by astronomer Will Gater compares the size of the comet to other Solar System objects.

The comet was discovered Pedro Bernardinelli and Gary Bernstein, from the University of Pennsylvania earlier this year. They were scouring through data from the 570-megapixel Dark Energy Camera (DECam) on the Víctor M. Blanco 4-meter Telescope in Chile. They found data of this object that was originally collected from 2014-2018, which did not show a typical comet tail, and the object was therefore thought to be a dwarf planet.

But within a day of the announcement of its discovery via the Minor Planet Center, astronomers using the Las Cumbres Observatory network took new images which revealed that it has grown a coma in the past 3 years, and that it was rapidly moving rapidly through the Oort Cloud. The object was then officially classified as a comet.


Surprising stillness ensues when the solar wind hits Earth's magnetosphere

Energy from the solar wind interacting with the magnetospheric 'bubble' around Earth creates waves of energy that appear to stand still.
boundary of Earth's magnetic bubble

This new finding, from research led by Imperial scientists, improves our understanding of the conditions around Earth that contribute to 'space weather', which can impact our technology from communications satellites in orbit to power lines on the ground.

The Sun releases a stream of charged particles called the solar wind. On the Earth's surface, we are protected from this barrage by the magnetosphere - a bubble created by the Earth's magnetic field.

When the solar wind hits the magnetosphere, waves of energy are transferred along the boundary between the two. Scientists thought the waves should ripple in the direction of the solar wind, but the new study, published today in Nature Communications, reveals some waves do just the opposite.


Adapt 2030 Ice Age Report: Changes hidden in plain sight

ice ice
Largest electric jet ever sighted in Puerto Rico resembling canyon wall petroglyphs. Northern Hemisphere melt season comes to an end with Greenland and Arctic sea ice levels well above lows experienced in the early 2000's. Antarctic sea ice above average all S. Hemisphere winter. China's corn imports up 221%, early onset of record cols and snow N. Hemisphere.


Comet 2

New Comet P/2021 Q5 (ATLAS)

CBET 5029 & MPEC 2021-R98 , issued on 2021, September 06, announce the discovery of a new comet (magnitude ~17) on CCD images taken on August 29.6 UT with a 0.5-m f/2 Schmidt reflector at Haleakala, Hawaii, in the course of the "Asteroid Terrestrial-Impact Last Alert System" (ATLAS) search program. The new comet has been designated P/2021 Q5 (ATLAS).

Stacking of 58 unfiltered exposures, 30 seconds each, obtained remotely on 2021, September 03.1 from G18 (ALMO Observatory, Italy) through a 0.30-m f/4 reflector + CCD, shows that this object is a comet with a compact coma about 8" arcsec in diameter and a tail 10" long in PA 270 (Observers A. Valvasori & E. Guido).

Our confirmation image (click on the images for a bigger version; made with TYCHO software by D. Parrott)
Comet P/2021 Q5 (ATLAS)
© Remanzacco Blogspot


Jupiter's great red spot is spinning faster says NASA

Red Spot Winds
© NASA, ESA, Michael H. Wong (UC Berkeley)
By analyzing images taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope from 2009 to 2020, researchers found that the average wind speed just within the boundaries of the Great Red Spot, set off by the outer green circle, have increased by up to 8 percent from 2009 to 2020 and exceed 400 miles per hour. In contrast, the winds near the storm's innermost region, set off by a smaller green ring, are moving significantly more slowly. Both move counterclockwise.
Like the speed of an advancing race car driver, the winds in the outermost "lane" of Jupiter's Great Red Spot are accelerating - a discovery only made possible by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, which has monitored the planet for more than a decade.

Researchers analyzing Hubble's regular "storm reports" found that the average wind speed just within the boundaries of the storm, known as a high-speed ring, has increased by up to 8 percent from 2009 to 2020. In contrast, the winds near the red spot's innermost region are moving significantly more slowly, like someone cruising lazily on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

The massive storm's crimson-colored clouds spin counterclockwise at speeds that exceed 400 miles per hour - and the vortex is bigger than Earth itself. The red spot is legendary in part because humans have observed it for more than 150 years.

"When I initially saw the results, I asked 'Does this make sense?' No one has ever seen this before," said Michael Wong of the University of California, Berkeley, who led the analysis published today in Geophysical Research Letters. "But this is something only Hubble can do. Hubble's longevity and ongoing observations make this revelation possible."


Cloud Lightning

Gigantic Jet plasma with fireballs near the Virgin Islands

jet plasma
Lightning on Earth is getting weirder and weirder. On the evening of Sept. 20th, Puerto Rican photographer Frankie Lucena pointed his Sony A7s camera at an offshore electrical storm. This is what he saw:

"This Gigantic Jet plasma event occurred over a very powerful thunderstorm near the Virgin Islands just ahead of Tropical Storm Peter," says Lucena. "I can't believe I was able to capture such amazing details."

Indeed, this is one of the best-ever photos of a Gigantic Jet. Sometimes called "Earth's tallest lightning," because they reach the ionosphere more than 50 miles high, the towering forms were discovered near Taiwan and Puerto Rico in 2001-2002. Since then, only dozens of Gigantic Jets have been photographed. They seem to love storms over water and are famous for surprising passengers onboard commercial aircraft.


900-year-old cosmic mystery surrounding Chinese supernova of 1181AD solved

1181AD Supernova
© The University of Manchester
A 900-year-old cosmic mystery surrounding the origins of a famous supernova first spotted over China in 1181AD has finally been solved, according to an international team of astronomers.

New research published today (September 15, 2021) says that a faint, fast expanding cloud (or nebula), called Pa30, surrounding one of the hottest stars in the Milky Way, known as Parker's Star, fits the profile, location and age of the historic supernova.

There have only been five bright supernovae in the Milky Way in the last millennium (starting in 1006). Of these, the Chinese supernova, which is also known as the 'Chinese Guest Star' of 1181AD has remained a mystery. It was originally seen and documented by Chinese and Japanese astronomers in the 12th century who said it was as bright as the planet Saturn and remained visible for six months. They also recorded an approximate location in the sky of the sighting, but no confirmed remnant of the explosion has even been identified by modern astronomers. The other four supernovae are all now well known to modern day science and include the famous Crab nebula.

The source of this 12th century explosion remained a mystery until this latest discovery made by a team of international astronomers from Hong Kong, the UK, Spain, Hungary and France, including Professor Albert Zijlstra from The University of Manchester. In the new paper, the astronomers found that the Pa 30 nebula is expanding at an extreme velocity of more than 1,100 km per second (at this speed, traveling from the Earth to the Moon would take only 5 minutes). They use this velocity to derive an age at around 1,000 years, which would coincide with the events of 1181AD.

Better Earth

Ozone hole above Antarctica is one of the largest ever, it's still growing, and may be linked to the COOLING stratosphere

Ozone hole

Ozone hole September 2021: This year's Antarctic ozone hole is already among the 25% largest in recorded history and is still growing.
A giant ozone hole has opened up over Antarctica this year. Already larger than the entire ice-covered continent, the ozone hole has surpassed the size of 75% of ozone holes measured since 1979 and is still growing. Scientists believe climate change might be the cause.

The Montreal Protocol, signed in 1987, is frequently described as the world's great success story in battling human-caused destruction of the environment. The agreement banned harmful chlorofluorocarbons and other substances known to destroy the protective ozone layer, which absorbs damaging ultraviolet UV radiation coming from the sun. The concentrations of the damaging substances in the atmosphere have leveled off since the protocol came into force and are slowly decreasing, providing the foundation for the layer's gradual healing. But worsening climate change is now slowing down the recovery.

Comment: 'Unprecedented' heatwaves may be occurring, but this is in tandem with extreme drought, epic flooding, alongside a variety of other unusual phenomena, including Earth's weakening magnetic field, none of which were forecast by those pushing the 'climate crisis' agenda. Moreover, even the ideologically blinded climate scientists have had to admit recently that extreme cold snaps are increasing, with numerous studies showing that our planet is, overall, cooling, and that we appear to be entering an ice age.

During the last little ice age, sunspot numbers decreased significantly, and it's likely that the real driver to the changes we're seeing on our planet today, and on others, is again due to waning solar activity as we enter a grand solar minimum.

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Over 450 previously unknown objects discovered in our Solar System

Large Kuiper Belt objects
© Mark Garlick/Science Photo Library/Getty Images
Artist's impression of a large Kuiper Belt objects.
The outer reaches of the Solar System constitute a strange and mysterious place. Out past the orbit of Neptune, where it's cold and dark, a swarm of icy objects called the Kuiper Belt orbits the Sun, thought to be more or less unchanged since the Solar System was born.

Because it's so dark and far away, and the objects so small, it's hard for astronomers to discern what exactly is out there. This makes the results of a recent search quite marvelous. Using data from the Dark Energy Survey, astronomers identified 815 trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs), of which 461 are newly discovered.

This is a significant bump to the 3,000 or so known TNOs in the outer Solar System, information that could help us better model how the Solar System formed, and maybe even search for the elusive Planet Nine.

The new catalog has been submitted for publication, and is available on preprint server arXiv.

"This catalog has 817 confirmed objects (461 first discovered in this work)," the researchers wrote in their paper.

"This is the second largest TNO catalog from a single survey to date, as well as the largest catalog with multi-band photometry."