14 Episode results for "Fred Watson"
Bonus - Dark Sky Conversations with Professor Fred Watson
"Hi It's Andrew here and as you know Fred Meyer taking a little break at the moment while Fred Swans around the Arctic. We'll be back with the first episode of Space Nets for Twenty Twenty Very soon in the meantime now we thought you might like to take a listen to this episode of the new dark skies conversations. PODCAST is coming soon. It features an interview with Fred. It's a great little background As to who he is and what he does when you've been listening to him for a few years but papal ask a Lotta questions of red and his background so just what does an astronomer at large. Do you'll find out in this interview. And of course you can subscribe to dark skies conversations wherever you get your podcast from so sit back relax and enjoy an interview with Fred On aspects and that's platform and keep an eye out for the dark skies conversations podcast and I'll check you again real soon on space nuts hi with a flick of switch. We turn night today and day tonight. We can change seasons actions and states of mind. Light is everywhere used endlessly and very much part of our modern world. But what is it. How do we use it? And how is it changing our environment and behaviors style field sky used to be our evening's entertainment. Now it's net flicks ipads or even a podcast. When was the last time you looked at the night skies? I'm money okay. And this is doc sky conversations the podcast that brings people and science together to share With me today is a straight his astronomer at large Professor Fred Watson an astronomer science communicator working with the Department of Industry Innovation and science US prior to these outlandish role. Fred was the astronomer in charge of the Anglo Australian telescope at Siding Spring Observatory Australia's largest optical telescope. Fred is known for his award. Winning Books Stargazer the life and Times of the telescope wise Uranus upside down and stock craving so had nineteen years as of interviews on the radio. TV and public appearances and is now heading up some tours around the world with Fred Watson Tours. He's most recently well known freeze podcast series space. Nuts Fred is well loved by the Amateur Astronomical Community but few know of his pioneering work on multi object spectroscopy Oris Fascination for optics and binoculars. He's around knowledge of all things. Light place him. Well my first guest on dark sky conversations. Thanks for joining us for it. Thank you for having made a pleasure to be here. Thank you question has to be asked. What does an astronomer at large actually do hopes? Nobody'll find find out so the job is essentially an outreach education and advocacy role role. It's all about trying to spread the word scientists good for people to let the wider public. Know just what an enormous contribution contribution Australia makes to the world of astronomy and to engage with with the wider community internationally so there is now a lot of international involvement in astronomy with things like the space agency and despite the fact that we Australia now has a strategic partnership with the European Southern Observatory which operates the biggest telescopes in the world on the finest observatory site in the world in northern Chile. Right and so why why is it is it is astronomy moving offshore to Chile for example. A really interesting story and depends on how long you've got. The story. Goes back to the nineteen sixties when astronomers realized that because of the advent of wide body jets and cheap F- F- flight relatively cheap air flights. They could put their telescopes where the conditions were best rather than where the strongest happen to be before that strong observatories we're always in cities. Because that's where I live. So there was a worldwide push to find the very best observing sites in the world In during the nineteen sixty s and that means sites that are dark without light pollution. That's of course a given start with which we might talk a bit more rebel against but also sites which have clear whether a particular sites which are very stable atmospheres a a a low level of atmospheric turbulence and so Sykes were identified. All over. The world. Australia siding Spring Mountain was discovered it to be probably one of the best places to do. Astronomy visible light astronomy Australia. But we now know that some of the other ascites in the world are even better and in particular it turns out that you need a place on a mountain top. Maybe three thousand five hundred meters is kind of twelve thirteen thousand feet on the western seaboard of a continent. That's what you need to get this spectacular atmospheric stability and and the problem is. We don't have that in Australia. We we don't have a mountain. That high on the Western seaboard. I mean we should pay somebody to build one if we could we do that so observatories elsewhere have better sites and that's what's happened. The astronomical infrastructure has concentrated concentrated on those sites principally in the southern hemisphere in northern Chile in Northern Hemisphere. It's principally begawan defer wire which has the best conditions in the world world. And so that's why we engage with with international. So you mentioned there are a couple of times light. The first being that light is moved away from light pollution. So what does that mean to stretch of what is like pollution. And why. Why did you have to move away from it? So many people don't realize that the night sky itself has its own luminosity which comes partly from a AH atoms in the upper atmosphere of the earth relaxing after a hard day in the Sunday. Get excited and they released that radiation after dark. There's also dust in the solar system mm-hmm which lights up the night sky and a very fame background of stars and galaxies. They all contribute to a natural sky brightness so astronomers are always battling thing against that an often what they're doing is studying faint objects whose light is only maybe one percent brighter the this natural background. So they're right down there up against what nature throws at you if you then put in artificial light you lose the signal together. It's as simple as that. So you simply cannot tolerate any artificial light pollution for this kind of groundbreaking research and AH AH. Are there technologies or anything that we can use to try and adapt conditions or is it just simply that we have to have no pollution. Yes it really is. It really is that you can't have light pollution. The problem the problem is astronomers. Look across cross what we call the whole visible wave band so there measurements are made in all colors of light from deep violet and beyond in what we call coli ultraviolet right up the wavelengths scale to red light and far infrared light and far infrared light. Those are. That's what you might say. Covers the the the visible light waves and light. Pollution tends to occupy much of that spectrum for a while there was an enthusiasm among astronomers for what it called low pressure sodium vapor lamps. Yeah street particularly the street lighting getting because they emit light effectively of one single wavelength are in. July's very familiar to people. See You could Aratu Kate so what that's what's doing. He's only polluting that one little bit of the spectrum and the rest of the spectrum is much much clearer but you never get a city or a community community that only has so every wondering outdoor housing lights normally incandescent lights mercury lights all the rest of it. Actually it turns out now so From the Vantage Point Twenty Nineteen that Sodium Vapor Street lights are almost obsolete. And that's for a number of reasons operationally operationally for for for councils and bodies like that that actually operate them. These sodium vapor lights have some disadvantages right. Yeah so I've heard you talk previously about a rainbow of light that you that you can study and you've just mentioned in the band of flight. Could you explain a little bit about the bar. Code of information that you get from from from this rainbow this spectrum of color that you're that astronomers use so. Yeah Ah I mean it's a really fascinating story. Goes back to Newton who a played around with a prison in the sixteen sixty s and discovered that you can shine wide wight light for example sunlight which effectively why even though it looks but yellowish he could pass that light through prison and break it up into this rainbow of colors. uh-huh Red Orange Yellow Green Blue and violet indigo. Isn't there people used to say those indigo as well but it's not really there so the spectrum colors which merge into one another so it's actually a continuum and it was Newton who coined the term spectrum in fact back a little bit later than that in the early eighteen hundreds around eighteen hundred to a scientist by the name of Williston noticed that if he put sunlight through a prism. Did it in a way that allowed you to look at specific wavelengths. Sorry look at specific color. Shouldn't use that. That came later. Williston notice that there were dark lines crossing the spectrum of the Sun and he thought Oh this must be just where these colors join together but ah later in the nineteenth century it was realized that those dark lines actually are the imprints of atoms in the atmosphere of the Sun. Who and the positioning of the lines actually depends on which elements elements are producing them? So what you've got is this array of lines and in the son's case it's it's tens of thousands of them The the early guys could only see a handful but now we recognize there. There are very many of them and each one is the signature of a particular a particular atom elements like Hydrogen Yup. Yep exactly the most. Common Element is hydrogen but we also find iron calcium sodium. All of those things are imprinted on the sun spectrum. So if you use a device vice to to form the spectrum then you can tell with absolute clarity what the sun is made of. So what is the device to ease. It's called a spectrum. Graph actually clean in early days. It was called a spectra scope which is just a something for looking at the word. Scopus Spectrum Spectroscopy. Lets you look at it and the early days when we started the first people who really put spectrum together. We're at the turn of the of the nineteenth nineteenth century so the likes of Williston. Yes that's right. It was actually two German scientists by the name of kickoff onto Bunsen pair of them. They were the guys who really built the first decent spectra scope and they were the people who worked out what was going on in the atmosphere appear the sun and it was actually an Englishman by the name of William Huggins later. Sir William Huggins who tried that technique on the stars ause realized that he could tell what the stars were made of was it. was there a comment that I remember some way that someone said that we would never know what all this that was. A Frenchman by the name of. Auguste comte was a philosopher and in eighteen. Thirty five he wrote in a book no we will never know what the stars are made of. We will never no the densities sizes. We just won't know that temperatures. He said we'll never know these things and actually in that same year. A demonstration took place in Dublin. In fact by a man called Charles Wheat Stone doing more or less the same as it was talking about with Williston but he it was using metal two pieces of metal with the spark passing between them and he realized that if you looked at the spectrum of the spark I told him what metal the electrodes who made of and that was once again building up to this idea kickoff Brunson were slightly later. They were around the eighteen sixties. So comp got it wrong we actually know a lot of stuff about this does go to complete. So what other information does like give us about the universe hard to overestimate what we can learn about the spectrum of objects coming from the universe so not only do you get for example exemplify looking at stars you not only get composition a starts composition. You can also tell whether it's moving towards or away from us and how Fast Austin moving what you did with the radio velocity. That's right that's something called. The radial velocity its its velocity along the line of sight and and so measuring the velocity of a star towards or away from you is pretty straightforward to do the spectrum of a look actually took until the eighteen ninety s before another German called the handle it better fogel time. He was the first guy to measure of raining. So yes you can tell the speeds also you can tell whether an object's rotating you can see that from the spectrum. E can even tell whether it has a magnetic connectic field because a magnetic field actually splits up the spectrum lines Z.. But wait there's because you can use and and this is technology that we really have only we've only had for the last twenty four twenty five years you can use a spectrum graph to see whether a star is moving slightly towards or away from you as it is pulled this way and that by a planet in orbit around. You can't see the planet is too far away to faint but you can see that. This research has allowed us to find exit planet. Exactly what we call exoplanets or extra solar planets and how many have we found. Now it's swell over three thousand the Yes. There is a different method. That's now used to detect them that. The the methods called the Doppler wobble technique the one I just mentioned because the doppler effect another German scientists. This is the effect of the of the wavelength of the light changing slightly by the towards or away from the motion of a star. And but the what happens is if you've got a planet going around to start pulls the star Dr this way and that and the the doppler effect is measurable for the Movement of the story itself. It's a matter of only meters per second for an object. The size is of Jupiter but something the size of the centimeters per second these tiny tiny houses. They're they're not even walking pace. They're very very slow. And yet you can muse light to measure those and so as you're saying I'm realizing how critical technologies with this and how how much information there is that we could about universe but we we're actually impairing these with pollution that's right yes that's correct Having said that all the world's leading observatories and you can these probably half a dozen of them that will be right at the top of the heat there in terms of the the excellence of the sites that they're on they're all protected with legislation to prevent there being undue light pollution and the legislation simply says that if you've got if you've got a development nearby within up to while in in the case of the siding uh-huh Otari in Australia it's up to a hundred kilometers with two hundred kilometers under certain conditions developments within area have to comply with Orwell's observatories all leading. Pretty well yeah. It varies The the major observatories in on the island of La Palma in the Canary Islands. This this grey observatory there in the Northern Hemisphere. The Hawaiian one's the Chilean ones. There are protections which are more or less effective depending on you the local circumstances just like to go back a little bit to talk about spectroscopy again and specifically ask you about your role well in developing multi object spectroscopy. I had never. I know what that is. Please explain an executive order it. Does this marvelous marvelous technique invented by William Huggins effectively the idea of using a spectroscopy for a spectrum graph which records the spectrum originally it was photographic now hold on electrically to workout. What's going on in the heavens? That became very much stock in trade astronomers during the first seventy years of the twentieth century. Words up until the nineteen eighties. It still is but the a big change happened in the early nineteen eighties. Because in the early days you had to meet your observations one star at the time. It was the only way a telescope under spectograph combination could work then in the late one thousand nine hundred seventy s a man with us absolutely delightful name Roger Angell who looked to the heavens German Brit. He works at the University of Arizona Eh. He's retired now. Still one of American astronomer astronomy very favorite strenuous Roger. Angell thought well outside outside the box in terms of how you could use technology to to you know improve astronomy and he got mixed up with fiber optics now fiber optics were until nineteen seventy. Were essentially an entertaining diversion. What what they are is stones of glass very fine strands of what we now use for fines and yes? That's right exactly. It's actually not quite a few silica which is classy. Material material drawn into these fines strands seldom more than a tenth of a millimeter diameter with the hair. It's it's yes that's about twice the width of very very fine. And they have the property that like put light in at one end and it will come out of the the other now they were known back in the nineteen fifties lava lamp lava lamp different ones. And the Yes. That's right all right. Yeah go sorry for my aside. There they were known back in the nineteen fifties these fiber optics but it was only in nineteen seventy that the corning glass works in the United States manage to draw fibers. Because that's how you make them start off with a block of glass and then you melt it and pull it out into these strengths. And they manage to draw fibers with extremely low losses by that. It means that if you put light in at one end most of it comes out the other disruption eruption. Well it's it's attenuation is. The technical is a reduction in the amount of light absorbed by the fiber before that you put light in at one into not tiny dribble came out of the but from nine hundred seventy with these what were called low loss optical fibers that's when they became a potential chill for the communications industry and so Calling it it allows sound and light to pass through it does allow any other it allows. There's light to pass through it. You Can put light in at one end and it will come out the other if you want to transmit sound through it. You've got to turn that sound signal into light clever modulating citing a light source you imprint. A sound wave on through and and that transmit through the fiber comes out the other end. You need decode and you get the sound route. So that's how communications work but astronomers and Roger Angell in particular. He thought well. These things are brilliant because astronomers are always jealously regarding the amount of light that they receive because it is so faint usually we're talking about single photons. Individual particles light so can can we use these newfangled optical fibers and in fact he's first idea was to have many many telescopes smallish telescopes all coupled together with optical fibers. So Oh you gather the light from all these telescopes and bring it back to a single place and you cannot do all the light together on one single object or one single object. That's right but then he turned the idea on its head and realized that with one big telescope which is looking at an area of sky instead of just taking one star or Galaxy Alexey from within that field of view you can actually use these optical fibers to line per fiber on many many objects simultaneously. So let me get this right. We have a field of sky. We have maybe a planet or is that too close. We don't bother with planets looking at enough galaxies and fire off stars and we could have fifteen or twenty items in sky and we could be looking at all of them and getting this barcode information from the stars Civil Tony's because you you can put a fiber on each one and in fact the first one I built actually had thirty nine optical fibers which by the standards of the day were quite quite large means thirty thirty nine objects simultaneously. So what what Roger Angell duty you got a PhD student. By the name of John Hill to work on this build something called Medusa which Medusa head thank you and that had think twenty-five fibers and they tried it out on a telescope in Arizona at the Steward Observatory and it worked. It was a technique that worked really well L. But then astronomers Australia got hold of the idea and in particular an engineer at the Angle Shirley Telescope by the name of Peter Gray. He worked out that you could engineer this thing. In a far more effective way the Medusa I worked with Peter. He was working with the anglo-australian telescope. I worked with a small telescope telescope called the United Kingdom Schmidt telescope which has a very wide field of view and together we produced a kind of workable optical tickle fiber systems for these two telescopes which kind of took the lead in the world on this science. Could you tell us the names of these. Well Peter Peterbilt you built the. What was it called fiber optic coupler psychot- remember the name but it turned into fo cap that was the acronym I built? Something called the fiber linked array imagery for matter which was flare then flare worse built in the early nineteen eighties. It was the first multi-fibre telescope spectroscopy system that coupled telescope to a spectrum graph which was actually stationary in the dome. Now that sounds weird an esoteric but what it meant was the spectrum of which is a very delicate piece of equipment was not riding around on the back of the telescope. It was fixed on the floor and was incredibly stable. And that's so we were the first to do that. So flair was the pioneer. Then I built a second version. Because flair had certain inadequacies the second one was the panoramic area coverage with higher efficiency. which was panache panache? A Well what clearly came next finesse. Until one of my colleagues said Venus stands for fails to interest nearly everyone saves spectrograph engineers engineers well. She called it flat to then evolved to a robotic system with more boring name of sixty F- with one one hundred fifty fibers that was commissioned in two thousand one and now a building an amazing machine called Taipan which uses things called starbucks so each optical fiber sixty had robot a single robot move the fibers around but with Taipan h fiber dopey. Three hundred in the end has its own micro robot round meanwhile anglo-australian telescope back in one thousand nine hundred ninety six built something called to death to the F. stands for two degree field. That's the amount of sky the thing sees in two F. Four hundred fibers but after tell you the aero which now stands for Australian astronomical optics used to be the Australian Astronomical Observatory. Hey always building. A system with more than four hundred fibers for telescope in Europe a European European telescope straight cuts way up doesn't it. It really does punch above its weight with regards to -nology develops right. That's why Australian astronomers Jonas have had such an given where small country because we have this equipment that we build it probably more effectively than anywhere else Somebody said we should call ourselves. Fibers are us. Because that's what we do. We do optical fibers the tech. The technique technique is in use around the world but many of the ones that are used elsewhere ones that have been built started struggling anticipate so just keeping bring on technology. Same here I heard Margaret Atwood before papal. She's the person that wrote. The Maidens Tail Modem Handmaiden handmaidens and. She comment was that old. Technologies have got good use a bad use and stupid. I use that we never considered and just thinking about lights and particularly with astronomy. What would you think the good the bad and the stupid well look for optical astronomy that's visible light astronomy not now talking about radio astronomers rexroad strong because these these are all different disciplines? Although we're all looking at the same things in a different way and often those results all piece together optical astronomers and and they're talking trades light so they are obsessed with light a more especially obsessed with with actually getting the very the best information from lies so the good is what we learn from from the from from the sky by Sifting light through the spectrum and other types of interest yep yep the baddies light pollution. So that's when light. which is it's been used for completely innocent purpose but gets out of hand in particularly in the light plumes of cities and and really goes back to the early twentieth century when councils putting lights with really no regard to what that was doing tonight sky because we simply simply never thought about it was becoming a problem by the time of the Second World War? It's really interesting. Is that in Los Angeles which is very next very very near the Mount Wilson Observatory in fact exceed Los Angeles from Mount Wilson. Where at the time? The biggest telescope in the world was during the second world. War centuries had had blackouts in order to to mitigate the possibility of invasion and during that time huge astronomical discoveries as were made because the the night sky koby seeing properly from moments again So it was inadvertent. So that's the bad side just on that I. I've attended some conferences in the U. K.. And one of the issues that they have when they talk about. Trying to mitigate light pollution the K.. Is that if you start talking to pay pooped in that sort of generation of about turning of streetlights and they feel like it's taking them back to that so I just like the blackout out to do that in blackout. Yes or no. I remember people saying that's true but it's not a blackout. I mean what we're talking about now is good lighting eh because this been huge progress in the last twenty years with understanding the ills of light pollution and not just for astronomers where the where the least least important in many ways of of the consequences of Bob Lighting. I again when I talk to groups about pollution. I often or haven't often and but I have been asked by people worldwide. Do we have to keep the lights down for the astronomers. When you've got a whole heaven stars you know? Why can't they study the start of the left or the brightest star or whatever and I think in some ways we lost that argument where we talked thirty years ago when when the International Dark Sky Association started and it was astronomers saying are we losing our night sky that that story was lost on the general public? I didn't understand the information that you're getting about heaven. That's probably true thing I'm most people think an astronomer is middle age bald man with a white coat. Who's got a long spindly telescope? And just spend his nights looking through uh-huh nothing could be further from the truth. It's all about you know. Well directed a scientific problems. We're trying to understand the universe because that understanding my actually actually turn out to be really useful to us one day and it's it's conducted in a very very progressive ways. Not just looking mistake. The sake of looking were studying and of course. The great thing is that it's no longer and more pulled middle aged man we we are. How far more diverse? So that's the good in a bed. Yeah stupid stupid. Use of technology that maybes. He's come through astronomy through light and and I know of things you talked about. Doppler effect isn't so I actually almost Lump the fiber optics work that I was talking about into their it certainly quirky. Because in you know I in one thousand nine hundred seventy. Nobody had thaw in this direction. It was Roger Angell towards the end of the nineteen seventies. We're thinking outside the box or this to what you could use these technologies for and I do remember number when I started working on this in one thousand. Nine hundred to building flared the first fiber optic system for the Schmidt Telescope. One of my colleagues. Call it what sins folly because nobody believed that it would do anything useful when it would just it was just be. Quirky is like is a bit like back in the postwar period the the then director of the Mount Strong Observatory which was Australia's Australia National Observatory at that time amounts from knowing camera the Commonwealth Observatory Sir. Richard Woolley. Somebody said to him. So why do you think radio astronomy will. We'll now ten years time he said forgotten and I think people thought that about the fiber optics. Where do you think fiber optic million ten years time forgotten? It's not going to be used on. The biggest telescope is already being used on the biggest telescopes in the world. It is absolutely revolutionized the science because what it lets she do as I said we didn't carry through the conversation that lets you look at many objects at a time. Four hundred eighty four thousand on the on the Vista Telescope which is in Chile operated by the Europeans that then allows you to gather enormous data sets of the most intimate statistics of stars and galaxies and quasars all these objects in the in the wider universe. And by doing that you can first of all you can. New Population Census Studies. You can look at the trends. You can start discovering a lot about the evolution of the universe. It's how we know for example old the the the Big Bang model of the origin of the universe how that is almost certainly the the the correct model because we can see its imprint. All over all over the millions of galaxies that we now have three dimensional positions for thanks to the fiber optic technique so it's kind of revolutionized that study but he also shows up the real oddballs. Tell if you're looking at you know four thousand stars at a time. You're going to find things that are very very unusual. And they're the ones that point the way to things like new physics the the understanding that relativity and quantum theory might not be all that there is these. Are Things things that we know the best models of reality we've got that we still but we still find gaps in the what we're looking for is what might be hidden hidden underneath which could lead to all kinds of things like teleportation travel all US grace and it actually leads me into the other question ahead. His real basic one but what is the speed of light. The speed of light is talking about Einstein's we know from him so yes. Is that going back to nine. Thousand Nine hundred five when Arnstein published his special theory of relativity which these who got words. But that's a theory of the way objects move and it sort of built on what Newton wrote in sixteen eighty seven in his book. Doc Principia the PRINCIPIA. He wrote his laws of motion. which which fine and work well until you get near the speed of light? The speed of light was already the well known at that time. Three hundred thousand kilometers per second. How by actually? It was first measured by a Danish astronomer in sixteen eighty seven by looking at the moons of Jupiter a man called Roma he Worked I think he'd Copenhagen studied the moons of Jupiter and realize is the way they behaved as he could see them in. The Sky meant that there was a time lag in the travel. Time of the light from the backside of Jupiter due to the front side of Jupiter analyzed. All that cracking good answer for the for the speed of light is actually French. Physicists in the late nineteenth century really kind of tidy down but what was curious and this is what fed into on Stein's thinking was that everybody expected expected. The speed of light would be something variable so that if you think about the speed of sound earth the speed the sound is carried through and if you're on a moving object like a car and the speed of sound changes for you because it's your station when you have a cargo past you can hear. Well that's the doppler effect. That's going back to what we're talking about earlier but the everybody everybody expected that if you if you say if you were looking at a source of light and that light is reaching you at three hundred thousand kilometers per second if if you're stationary yeah that's fine but the thinking was if in fact you're moving towards that light at one hundred thousand kilometers per second then then you should see speed as being less than or more than what it actually was. It turns out that the speed of light is. He's fixed in a vacuum. Does not how you moving. How the light source is moving? It is always three hundred thousand kilometers per second and one went. Once he realized is that was actually confirmed. By two Americans Mickelson Morley in the eighteen eighty S. The speed of light is in variant and announced. I'm I'm fed into his work and realized that actually the speed of light is almost mystical. It's it because space can vary space can change shape it depending on your motion and time can change depending on your motion but the speed of light doesn't is the is the thing that's constant absolutely constant. Yeah there is. There is a group of small group of scientists. One of whom is based here in Australia. John Webb who's Nelia Leo was somewhere else in the world. Which is why it's called the worldwide web? John Webb is a he believes he has evidence that the speed of light was different in the early universe Looking back thirty point five thirty point six billion years the beginning of the universe was thirteen. Point eight billion years ago to the best of our knowledge and he looks back nearly all that way and thinks he can see evidence that the speed of light has changed. It's a very speculative result nominee. Astronomers believe in but John Webb is convinced without from the University of New South Wales. We'll keep an interesting an eye on that. To see how it progresses. Yeah so when. When was the last time you looked at the night sky last night? Did you look to the stars. And so yeah. There's a bit of cirrus around. It's as long a brilliant night. Yeah look the best time you looked at what. What's the most memorable experience you've had in the nighttime environment? It's because my a life has been in astronomy and it goes back a long way. There are many many That I could that I could talk about one of them was in the mid to early. Two thousand two thousand six two thousand seven late in two thousand and six a colleague of Mine Robert macnaughton in siding spring discovered a comet. That was his job. He discovered comets but This one turned out to be incredibly bright and in the early months of two thousand seven it was just dazzling in a in western evening sky. Not where I lived at that time was totally crews are particular does. Yeah not all of them do some some go around the Sun Many of them are in orbit around the Sun but comics actually come from the depths of the solar system. In fact almost halfway to the next nearest star there's Sort of shallow of these icy objects called the ORT cloud named after a man called Yan art who was a Dutch stronger. In the Mid Twentieth Century must be a cloud of icy objects out there which fall inwards towards the solar system and when they get near the Sun the ice evaporates and they become luminous right. Yeah he was. That's right and that's how we that's how we know about comets but comment one of these. That came out of the Blue Egg. Robert detected it when it was quite faint but it turned out to be probably the most spectacular comet of the century so far it may be the most spectacular for the whole century. It was just so that's one but I I always have very fond memory of a night light. which would have been in the early nineteen eighty s and it was when I was building? The first of these fiber optic systems the flare thing that I mentioned that was a device that as I said used optical fibers to pick the light of stars from the focus of the telescope and brought them the fibers brought them out of the telescope to a basically a little thing that just line them all up in a straight line now we straight line was about half an inch long thirty millimeters or something AH thirty nine optical fibers in it each of them a about a tenth of meter in diameter and it was a crystal clear Leeann. I and I got the telescope all set up until this was right at the beginning of these experiments and I picked up this little fiber AIBA unit from the floor which I knew had the light of stars coming down in the end and I just saw a line of little lights. It'll all different colors because stars are different colors. Color is dependent on the temperature and it was magical. These are standing there withholding style in my hand with with these these. These thirty nine five lit up shining away and it was the real reason why it was. A buzz is because actually quite hard to get light down fibers become very very precisely at that point. I knew I could do it. And I knew the instrument was going to work. Did mazing so just to finish shop like to ask you if you had your soapbox and three minutes if time what do you want people to know about light and light pollution Russian. Okay so this is where I become. Well an advocate. It's not quite activists activism. It's very gentle activist. uh-huh why do we want moderate change. When do we want it in due course? So that's my soap box and what I would tell people will is that he asked them to think about whether light is going. Light basically goes on forever. I mean it does the dwindling away to very faint levels but if you're sending a beam of light upwards into the sky what am I going to do is going to light up the molecules of the atmosphere via and spoil that view of the sky for somebody else. And it's a death by a thousand cuts so individually our contribution to light pollution is very low but collectively when you've got a city like Sydney with more than four million people living there. Nobody thinks about where the light is going. Then you've got a city in which it is impossible to see the stars house so it's just to think about lighting up only what you want to light up. Keep the light below the horizontal plane. So none of it's going going up into the sky and there's a subtlety here. We now know that like that is rich in blue and that's really Dazzling white light that we getting used bright white light emission dial diodes light-emitting diodes. Led that light we now know is not good for human health at night because it fools circadian rhythms into thinking. It's still daylight screws up everything so think about Light Posi answer. Thanks for you time to great pleasure. Anytime thank you. Well that's it docks guy conversations this week. We hope you enjoyed it. We'd love to hear feedback thoughts. Were if you've got any questions about lot. Pollution suspended the name out. PODCAST DOC. Sky Travel Dot Com. Today you or Instagram's is to grandma's at least subscribe to our podcast at I tunes Stitcher spotify or wherever you get your podcast from. And why are they give us a reviewed. Thanks again for me this week until next week Matz Out uh-huh.
'the need for speed'
"I love this podcast. Support this show through the acoss support a feature. It's up to you. how much give. And there's no regular commitment just hit the link in the show description to support now. Fifteen seconds guided journal and admission sequence Space nuts three to five report. It feels good. Hello once again and happy new year. Thanks for joining us on the latest episode of the space. Nuts podcast episode. Two hundred and thirty five is what it says on the notice. The professional professional rundown shake out so backwards anyway trouble rating that my name is andrew dunkley your host and joining me as always is good professor fred watson astronomer at large. Hello fred andrew. I wanted you to see my astronomy face masks because my daughter sent me for my birthday all the constellations sadly they're only their employees but they are the right constellations the real thing. So this is my. This is my new fashion accessory. Which don't need in here. Because i'm on my own. Nearest person is twenty inches away in a different room. So i can take it off but i thought you'd like to see beauty. I love it. I wasn't very actually. I've seen a lot that people have been creating. You've got to give humans credit for the ingenuity that some of the face masks that have started popping up around the world just so imagine any. I'm not so sure about the zombie ones because children have a scowl. Another good one to show you in your letter. And so that's one yet but i've sitting it be good and by the way. How is christmas and new year. What did you get up to. I wrote two chapters of the new book and still forging ahead to try and get it. Get the text out away as soon it can extend the cartoons for it. Because that's the next big thing. Just go away. This impromptu you hang on hang on gentlemen was the late under dunkley. Who's just revealed his chest full of his his case full of trophies. It's done oh the book stone ready for my perforated creator so We're all good to go. Yeah hard copy to an editor an miracle anyway. Anyway that will be out sometime this year. Probably the guys freights to look to nine comes in. No fans come though andrew. Both of them. It takes me. We'd better get down to business so news. Good christmas good as good very very quiet so we didn't get up too much not that we could because there was so many restrictions that we had to deal with because of the sydney at break but yeah hopefully things will get better this year but against a wish. Think so in this episode of the space knots. Podcast we will be talking about earth spinning faster than it used to. That's because people running a lot faster than they used to. The planet of luck treadmill effect china the these certain chinese astronomy as we got a lot of speed going on not the wrong kind of spayed. We got spayed spade going on this week's episode. Chinese astronomy on nearly six hundred high velocity stars. That's because most of them are seventeen years old now and a couple of questions coming up one from tome in the midlands of the uk around binford's law which this fascinating question and darryl in south. Australia has a what would happen if question for us. I love those ones so we will deal with all of that today on the space. Podcast now fred to l. very first a topic for twenty twenty one earth is spinning faster than it used to. Someone suggested the treadmill effect. I suspect otherwise. Actually you know the treadmill effect is good as yes zanny. Because of the moment nobody knows why so short segment the theory that Look at your theory that is should go into the mix for what the reason is for his faster spinning earth that we're seeing it sort of flies in the face of the normal wisdom about the spain we've known ever since invention of clocks and probably a little bit before let's actually but we know that the the rotation he's not constant it's very poor timing sort of a because it spins affected by things like the sloshing around of the liquid iron core in the middle solid iron core in the middle and the liquid encore above it the excuse me the convictions in the mantle. But he's also affected by other things like melting ice sheets and ocean currents and things of that so all of those things effect the rotation of the earth. But as you. And i spoken about before andrew the normal way changes is by slowing down. And that's because the tidal friction effects between the earth and the moon. The earth is gradually put the energy into the moon which makes it received away from us that energy has to come from somewhere and by logic comes from the slowdown of the rotation. But it's not just you know a constant drift downwards it's got bumps in it and we had a bump effectively last year. Twenty twenty apparently had more short days than we had for quite a while which means that the spin is going up. Sorry i do go ahead now. I knew that last year felt quake. Everyone said just half austin twenty twenty like well. The shortest day was by day. Now we don't mean daylight or anything like that. It's the stunned day. Eight to six thousand four hundred seconds. That's how many seconds going today which is twenty four times three thousand six hundred number of seconds our so. The shortest day was actually july nineteenth. The debts of our winter down here in australia but high summer up in the northern hemisphere and the the so that eight to six thousand four hundred seconds was short by one point. Four six zero two milliseconds. So it's not really something you'd notice but it is a short day and you blink and you would yes blinked too usually longer than expected so you would but yes. There's no so. I should say that. Nobody's worried about this particularly it's just a reflection of the fact that the earth is as variable in its spin. An exactly as i was saying things like the the movement of material with india but also i think to some extent we're seeing the sensitivity sensitivity of the earth to what actually happens on the surface and that's because on the surface this effectively. What's called a big moment of inertia. So that things that happened on the surface actually have a bigger effect. And that's why just the level of snowfall for example over a continent light green land or over an online greenland and even things like the erosion of mountains by glasses. And that sort of thing all of these can change the speed of the planet's spin the the other side of it and maybe this is a little bit more concerning is that atmosphere and climate scientists looking at this as perhaps seeing something like the effect of global warming wave got snow caps melting on the snows high up in the in the mountains actually disappearing So it's it's really an interesting yardstick May mark the beginning of changes in the weather through tate. Now the people really most upset about it. I'll the computer scientists and they always up because that's why computer. Scientists hate the fact that the spinneys gradually slowing down because in order to compensate for that. We introduce leap seconds periodically. I think something that's not been introduced since nine hundred seventy five. Was it the first time elite second was put in and they buy their computers. Need to be adjusted. If you put a leap second in and that's a big pain in the neck because it systems on board spacecraft. It's all over the place where things have got to be changed and the idea of the speeding up of it could mean that you put in a negative leap second. That's to say you take out a second. At the end of seasonal periods other the thirtieth of june thirtieth of december put in. So you could take one house. And that's again could lead computer scientists to tear their hair out and all kinds of problems. So they're the ones who are most directly affected by this but i thought it was a really interesting piece of research to point out that actually occasionally this in speeds up. Yes it is it's fascinating. I believe the first leap second was added in nineteen seventy two. You went viral. And yeah when the earth slowed down a little bit. And and yet as bain think twenty seven seconds up their bats. I did have a question you. At the beginning that the title affected the moon is supposedly slowing the rotation of the earth. But we also had the moon is creeping away from the earth. And we'll have a time. Will that change the spin of the earth as it is it moves away or is that too so the to intimately linked andrew. The moon will never disappear. It will settle down about half a million kilometers away. This is in something like fifty billion. It's nothing to worry about but it's actually so it's the gravitational interaction between the two that causes both of those phenomena the slowdown of the earth. Which is because it's giving energy to the moon. It is a very complicated process. But it's all about the way the tidal bulge on the earth naturally acts gravitationally on the moon itself to give it an acceleration that acceleration moves it further out in its orbit so yes to intimately linked processes both of which are very interesting. I think me gets they all joy. I actually looked it up once and i think we have talked about it when once or twice the ball. She's responsible for quite a significant difference between the width and the height of height of the planet. It's it's it's quite a large fairy. That's the equatorial bulge. Just the bulge calls the story. Actually something something. That's not good me andrew. So yes the has. An equatorial bulge fatter around the middle. Pretty well all the planet. Saturn is the most sundays ten percent wider across his equator than is at the polls. But wait for this in the all. The research been doing for the kids book. One of the amazing facts is how perfectly spherical sonny's so the some is one point. Three thereabouts million kilometers in diameter. And yet it's the difference between its equatorial diameter. it's polar diameter is less than ten kilometres. It's a staggering. So it's absolutely a perfect fear which is really quite remarkable. It is so here's another question without notice getting good at that if spinning a bit faster in twenty twenty does that main the bulge. The equatorial bulge begun. Probably but the amount millimeter. Not exactly. that's too much ten millimeters overestimate just a case. Okay we got. That covered. Great topic off the year fascinating. You're listening to and occasionally watching the space nuts. Podcast with andrew. Dunkley and fred watson all space nuts. Thanks again for joining us on the space nuts. Podcast andrew dunkley with frayed watson and thanks to everybody who send questions into us because we lock to get questions from the audience we feel it gives you a bit more to to enjoy. It's just us rabbiting on about what we like to talk We get to talk about the stuff that you want to know about as well and we've got Episode two hundred forty coming up very very soon and as we tend to do on the round numbers. We offer the opportunity to go all in. So if you've got a question buzzing around in that massive. Brian of yours that you would like fred to tackle plays plays plays senate into us. Just go to the space. And that's podcast website space nuts. Podcast dot com is what it is coincidentally and you can upload your question through our email interface. If you don't want to use your voice or you can click on the tab and record your voice as long as you got to deliver the microphone. It should work and just tell us who you Wave from ask you a question bam and away we go. So we'd like to do an old question episode for episode two hundred and forty which will be coming up in about five weeks time. Now fred we. We have got The need for spade in episode two hundred thirty five of the space. And that's us and we go from a fastest spinning earth too high velocity stars which of been observed and fan quite a few of them. Yeah that's right. This is actually a story quite close to my heart under a number of reasons partly. Because i've been involved with in measuring high-velocity stars myself the right project. Radio velocity experiment which we did with the united kingdom schmidt telescope during first decade or so of the new millennium we surveyed the speeds of half a million stars and one of the first pieces of research that came out of that was the detection of high velocity stars. Nothing like as many as the chinese astronomers have now discovered but what does not just these stars leaving the galaxy and waving goodbye. She gives you a way of measuring the mass of the galaxy and we got a mass for the galaxy from those results of one point four trillion times. The massive sum. That's a result. The dutch really still holds up. I think anyway. Things are moving on because with a telescope. Which again. I've had quite a bit to do with. It's called lemos. It is a telescope. That is built actually only about one hundred kilometers from beijing for reasons that i won't go into but on a site that is rather light polluted but is very good for observing relatively bright stars. And what they've done with lemos. An east name is actually an acronym is the large sky multi object fiber spectroscopic telescope and. There's the clue because my career was all about multi object fiber spectroscopy which is where you use optical fibres to steer starlight from the telescope into the spectrum device that actually turns the light into a spectrum unless you analyze all details so our five spectograph on the schmidt telescope one hundred and fifty five dollars when he was in good condition but the llamas telescope has thousand so it can look thousand us simultaneously. And that's why they doing now very big surveys of star speeds and the chemistry of styles as well which is one of the other things that comes out of this so the the study that's just been published has now a total of five hundred ninety. One stars added to the list that we knew already which was about five hundred and fifty so it kind of doubles effectively doubles. What we know often. The stars are ones that have actually had something happened to them For example if you have a style that happens to be in the central galaxy of one disclose to the black hole in the central galaxy might get caught up in the maelstrom of material. But not quite be sucks in. But in fact given a cake atwood's to give these very high losses it's that sort of thing or even just an encounter of two stars coming together. where they they don't colli but the gravitational interaction actually boosts one of them out of the galaxy so it's really You know it's a really interesting piece of work. But today we have something we didn't have in the in the era of raves. The ready of loss experiment. We now have the space. What guy is doing is measuring very accurate positions of stars. They're accurate to about five minutes of a of an arc. Second tiny fraction of a second of arc is one three thousand six hundred thirty degree which is a relatively small angle but then they're splitting to millions of an second and that lets you look at the way styles move across the line of sight when you can combine that with the radio lusty which is the along. The line of sight you get the true space velocity of the star. It's actual motion through space. And that's how you can how you can use some of these very high velocity and are effectively leaving the galaxy. It's great half fast. Are we talking figures. But i actually had time to look at the paper itself which came out on the seventeenth of december but the typical sosa figures that we were talking about with rave war of the order. Four hundred five hundred kilometers per second. And that's enough to to get you out of the galaxy. It's all about the escape. Velocity galaxy of course varies depending on where abouts in the galaxy. You are so. It's not a single number. I think we're used to quote the escape. Velocity the radius of what the number is. I could probably look it up but do just now. I think it's less than four hundred kilometers per second. But you get the drift. It's these velocities in the region of a few hundred kilometers per second. How fast is l. Son moving asda. Yes so we Part of sort of circulating around the center of the galaxy our speed is roundabout two hundred and fifty kilometers per second. Okay that's the psalms orbital speed around the center of the galaxy and in fact because of doubt matter that's the orbital speed of most styles one of the things that we won the reasons why we think dark matter is there is because of this. What's called a flat rotation curve when you look at galaxies. Everything's moving around at about two hundred and fifty kilometers per second whereas what you would expect is for the velocities in the middle to be fast and then for them to slow down as you go further out what they don't. And that's one of the one of the reasons why we think every galaxies encased in a cocoon of dark matter. It's the the the most significant reason why we think dot military israel. Someone's going to ask the question if everything's moving at approximately the same speed and how is all drifting apart at a suppose. It doesn't matter what that's s you drifting atwood's if or apart what do you mean i mean gets makings the so that is much much smaller and only comes into play where you've got you know huge distances. We're talking about galaxies which are bound by their own gravity a that sort of overrides anything to do with the drift of space which is much much slower values on the scale of the galaxy the expansion of the universe zero. It's only when you're looking at galaxies separated by you know millions or billions of light years that you start to see the expansion of the universe. I k- makes perfect sense. You mentioned a few reasons. Why stars reach these high-velocity the one you mentioned is that they just got their drivers losses. Well we knew those. The state of new south wales and i think in a couple of other states in australia. Who get the loss to demonstrate so with a red pay for their first year provisional license and then For three more years two more years they have to have green lights so well identified. It doesn't slow them down at all but yes making generalizations hundred because all climbing saudi non santo them. I know some people who were very very carefully and under done pretty good too doesn't let or time for a break here on the space podcast episode two hundred and thirty five your with andrew dice. Clay and frit watson four pistols spins nuts the nuts podcast with andrew dunkley and professor afraid watson and a special shout out to all our patrons of course who put a bit of money into the podcast. We certainly appreciate your support. And if you'd like to become patron you can look up the day towels on our website. Spice nuts podcasts dot com. You can give a little. You can give a lot you it's totally up to. You is not mandatory I must point out and A shoutout to our social media supporters. Those follow us on facebook twitter. Where else pay patriots. That's my special. That social media is also Pinterest and a few other places. So what's that other one called instagram instagram. I should have but I just get so lost in them there so many but and youtube. Of course you call you to Social media platform i suppose but We getting quite a following on youtube. So thank you to the youtube followers for supporting this the space nuts podcast when we get a lot of feedback from youtube as well so thank you very much now frayed. We've got a couple of questions to tackle we and this i yes I one pretty wordy is comes from tom who lives in the midland of the uk. Hi fred and andrew. I have a question for regarding a mathematical phenomenal. Benfits ball came. I came across this awhile ago. Walls casually researching various things online for those unaware of benfits law. It's an analytical to tool commonly used to detect financial fraud. I find this fascinating. Basically the law states that when taking the first digit of numbers in lodge dafa sits the probability of h number one to nine occurring repeatedly decreases the higher. You go for example. The number one will occur. Thirty thirty percent of the time to around fifteen percent and so on Nine occurring just five percent of the time audited this tool to analyze data sets and find anomalies in the information if a company's features a nine as the first digit say sixty eight percent of the time providing the company's services died products whose prices exclusively begin with the non. That's important it's a likely indicator of fraud so now to the actual question pot in benfits law is benfits. Law commonly used in astronomy analyze things like distances between stars galaxies planets all for other large sets of data relevant to astronomy. I've read several articles that have explained how they've explored the slow in niger for things such as dips diverse quakes sizes of animals and infectious diseases. But there doesn't seem to be a huge amount on astronomy and spice if this lower applies not only define any financial information but much to the natural world and the universe that's that would be somewhat intriguing. Love the podcast discovered it. For months ago. I tend to listen to it whilst flying space exploration game which really enhances the experience. I'm fully code up now. Begun releasing some episodes. You poor thing If you could start recording twice a week minimum. That would be great about all the best tom from the uk. Midland's benfits law. I like the sound of these. It's interesting yeah. It was an infection. Benford was only. This was the second person to discover this law because it was also discovered a fifty years earlier in eighteen thousand nine one by an astronomer by the name of simon american so sometimes known as the new combined. Astronomers of certainly to the numerical distribution. Tom's right actually that it's not a to the is widely used in astronomy. Although i take his point that other natural things have been used to to to to have been shown to fit this law like mathematical of physical constants. It's it's a really very interesting thing i think. Financial fraud is probably sleaziest us. But the point going to make in astronomy. They're a statistical tools. Which quite different from this and very much more suited to the problems that we face strong which are looking things like looking for trends in the metal content of stars in their atmospheres or their surface gravities how distributed with distance in the galaxy. And for that kind of statistics that we use pops in some ways more conventional. Although the flavor of the month is still something called beijing statistics which is a statistic set of statistical tools that involve you effectively taking a guess at what the answer might be you fix something called a prion and the prior is your starting point when you are going through the statistical number crunching to work out. What what the answer is likely to be so basin in statistics play a much bigger role than benfits law. It is interesting. Though how applicable it is over many different physical parameters. One of the things that that i thought was an interesting concept. Benford law is lengths of rivers a. That's such an interesting thing that the length of rivers actually fits this natural law. I just wanted to comment. I'm going to have to offer a second because my computer's got red lights on. It tells me. I forgot to plug in power. So i'm gonna let you chat for a second. While i get it but the the really interesting thing i think about them. Full when you look into it is it works best. When you've got a statistical data covering many orders of magnitude that means you know tens hundreds thousands hundreds of thousands millions. If you've got data that covers that broad-based then the law works really well. If you're only in like this year one to ten then it doesn't work so well which is an interesting of i think is an interesting little. I'm going to go before my computer. Dis andrew leave you to talk for no less than no longer than about thirty seconds tribal. I think i can manage that. I used to work in radio. F- still up radio. I don't work in it anymore. It reminds me of a trip judy. A couple of months ago. now we We saw trip. We decided not to take charges. And of course my find but it's battery heavily and so the next day driving home at a cable in the car and just plug in and charge a fine on the way home and everything will be apple's when i got home. The phone was almost data. What the heck over the course of time. The plug in the Adaptor in the car dashboard had worked. Its way out a couple of millimeters and no longer have contact. Couldn't you get caught out in this wise but Luckily or go home with fully functional. Find the light. i the lightest i. I've put on my phone battery burn Daily which ended a brand new find. So i'm a little bit annoyed and apparently the fixed isn't going to be uploaded until next month. So yeah i think a lot of these mobile phone companies have got a bit to answer for fred. I really do. But that's another story. Thank you complicit away. I didn't want it to fair enough. Now let's move onto our next question and this is. This is a what would happen if question. This comes from daryl. In south australia must point out too that This question one from tom. The the patrons but just for change were including a couple of days. Patron questions in the mainstream podcast. Normally they'd go into bonus material for the patrons but These questions were so very good. We thought everyone would enjoy them Now i darryl says the other day i was watching a youtube channel and the title of the segment was what would happen. If the earth got kicked out of the solar system it was mentioned that some seventy thousand years ago a brown dwarf red dwarf binary system passed through the cloud. Miss things up it also stated that Please seven ten of probably that will pass through in about a million years time So he's asked several questions. Have either of you heard about this carol. Scientists had to scientists now Now this happened. can this still be saying through telescopes. today how would it take How long would it take for asteroids from the event. And how can scientists track something that might take a million years to be in our neighborhood. Good questions and You fred. I love the way you haven't heard of. It was just going to say. I love the way that darrell has number these questions. One be three and five so yes. I've certainly of gleason seven ten. Which is a star that will pass through a million time. I don't know about the black brown. Dwarf red dwarf binary system. It's possible that might have happened. So let's just step back and workout what what's going on here. The solar system is not just the planet and the asteroids and comets. It is also the cloud cloud envisage baiano water dutch back in about nineteen fifty or there abouts he postulated that the source of comments. Is this sperry. Co cloud of comet nuclei which bodies a few kilometres long very icy. But if you've got lots of them out there a passing star could disturb the cloud propel them into the inner solar system where they will essentially falling towards the sun and be visible as comments because they wanna get near this up evaporating there. The isis basically turned to to today to a plasma in fact and then see them but of course if that happens on a wholesale scale. If you've got something that churns through the cloud and disturbs it and sends a whole lot of comets into the inner solar system. A good chance that some of them are going to hit the earth and so people who look at asteroid impacts and things of that sort and the history of the earth in terms of mass extinctions criterion and things of that sort. They're the people who i think would be saying. Well something happened here. We had a whole lot of mass extinctions. Maybe that was because something Through the cloud. And you can. Actually you can naturally. This is going to one of the questions here. Be i think actually not to be how the scientists know this happened. You can look at stars now especially that we've got the guy data set that we were talking about a few minutes ago. These exquisite positions of stars which also gives us the chance to work out their motion. How they're moving. If you combine that with radio losses take from spectograph of you've got this complete motion of a stom- and if we can look stars out there in the universe and say well or in the galaxy and say well this one would be now affinity few hundred thousand years ago something of that. So so that's how that kind of deduction is made and so the red dwarf binary system as i said i haven't heard of that one but it if it really exists it probably is something that has been observed through telescopes the gleason seven tan is much better defined. Because that's one that's kind of way it hasn't passed through the the solar system yet It's a it's a red dwarf star glazer stars. Essentially red dwarf dwarfs the head doctor professor leases. Catalog is number seven. Ten in. the catalog is acted that there will be an interaction between please ten and the cloud because it will come in closer probably than the cloud. Certain point two light years is minimum distance. The cloud his roundabout that distance from the from the sun. So this is an event that is expected to occur on our best figures in one million two hundred and eighty-one thousand years time and that again comes from the guy data so it is. It's a close approach and that is likely to disturb the cloud and so the other one of the other questions that donald has asked question. D- how long would it take to see astronauts. From this event that should be comets asteroids because cloud is the reservoir of comments they would take yes tens of thousands hundreds of thousands of years to spiral in from the cloud into the inner solar system. Maybe on average fifty to one hundred thousand years so it's not an immediate thing but this star is itself conduct an immediate effect it drifts through the sky relatively leisurely pace. I think also a figure of one year. I think was been. Let me see if i can take that up again. It was certainly something that would be easily visible. It's a star that will be relatively brian. In fact they were suggesting magnitude of about minus two. Which is as bright as mars gets when it's when it's brightest. I'm sorry i can't find that figure of its of its drift. But the style would be there and it doesn't through the cloud bash everything up it's a very leisurely process but the effect of this one hundred thousand years or so after the closest approach when the star would still be visible in the sky. That's when you start getting become feeding into the inner solar system and the last question how can scientists track something that might take a million years to be unable. It's exactly one of just said it's looking at the information we get from gaya and the radio velocity surveys that gives us the space velocity of a star. And then you just map it forward because there's not that much else threatens in the you know in the period go to any other styles that it might interact with but a million years is you. It's not that long in the grand scheme of things so it's very interesting really interesting question. I'm very glad. Donald rosa ripa beside the and still less around one point. Two question about the predictability. I suppose a million years out that makes it a little bit of a lottery dozen Only in the sense that you might have ignored or missed. There's a faint star somewhere between us. That will disturb its path and it's be the modeling that people are doing about the way stars moving within our neighborhood. Actually go out to fifteen million years and so this sunday. Good modeling That takes into account what we know about styles vicinity now. This one's an interesting one. The fact that it is sort of whizzing towards was timescale of point. Two eight one million years. I don't know whether any of us still be around by them. We hotfooted to other parts of the galaxy all succeeded in wiping out. Who knows i fully the former committing. I just going back to one of my is many years. It's motion through the sky. News right Could something be disturbing north plad now. or a we pretty well with with what's happening around us in this possible. The cloud the problem with the cloud is so so far away the objects in tiny that he's not really well bound to the solar system. So you don't have to give it much of a push to disturb things and people have suggested you can giant molecular clouds in the neighborhood of the sun could disturb the cloud facto. I've worked with some strenuous in the nineteen seventies and eighties. Who have picture that. Epi sell the disturbances of the cloud of a period of hundreds of millions of years every self company one of these regularly company one of these giant molecular clouds cloud guess disturbed and you get an episode of bombardment on the on the surface. A victim of and bill napier my two colleagues at hebrew. Were very big on this on this view but we do have we do have evidence that certainly have been periods where the bombardment via has been much higher than other periods and not just right at the beginning in the early history of the solar system. Three point eight zero three point. Nine billion years ago something called the late heavy bombardment. Which in which was a time when everything's charging around but they've been these other period since then where it's looked as other been more higher rates of cratering on solar system bodies which suggests that there's been more than that suggests that maybe something has upset the clouded and i suppose it's also possible. Something disturbed what. I've fifty to one hundred thousand years ago when humanity wasn't feeling and we might say the effects real soon true actually hundred thousand years ago. He was a thing but different. Not quite as well in tune with the the sums negatives were then they just new things. We're flying down. The point mentioned in the youtube channel. That donald watch not confessed to watch this video. And it's giving us a link to it. We'll try and do that. But that talks about events seventy thousand years ago. That would have messed things up. We could still say the effect of we could yes. That's right yeah we watch out for this spes. Yes great news. Daryl fresh question. It was a good one. I do enjoy the what would happen. If so if you want to Forest one or two of those for episode to forty We could have a bit of Because i'm sure people got something in mind about what we'll look forward to that. Is i forget again. If you do have a question you can upload it our Website gust dot com. I m i linked voice If you want to record your voice Or you can just do it through the email interface and send us the text. Whatever way suits you that brings us to the end of another program and their first one for twenty twenty one. Thank you for it. It's it's great fun and a great pleasure. We'll find other interesting stuff to talk about next time on a look food andrew. Soon okay professor. Fred watson astronomer lodge out of the team here at space nets podcast and special high to hugh back in the studio and for me andrew dunkley and all of us. Thanks for your company will see you on the very next episode. Mice not available at apple podcasts. Google podcasts spotify. Iheart your favorite podcast playa. You can also stream on demand. This is another thirty podcast. Production from dot com radio.
173: Planet 9 - A Whole New Theory
"In fifteen seconds guidance journal and nine technician sequence spence nuts three to to space meals good hello again and thank you for joining us on yet another episode all of the podcast we call space nuts. I'm your host standard ugly with me. The expert in everything above your head is professor Fred Watson Astronomer Astronomer. Latch ally frayed. That's a nice quite liked everything above your head especially given the top of my head fairly. MTV multiple meanings could could mean space it could mean astronomy it could mean hey could mean everything that we don't understand so. I like that. I must again one day. And how are you sir. I'm very well. Thank you very well already raring to go and very are you glad to be talking to you again. I got a lovely note from a new listener. She's listened to two or three of our podcast so far said Oh you've only got one hundred and seventy two to go and she said I better do some catching up but does she wrote a lovely mile and asked a question. That's not related to actually going into the podcast. It was is more of a an academic question which passed on to you but she was thrilled to bits to get a personal response. which is that's the way I do it? That's the way I swing swing to answer everybody when I can and I told her you'd be hearing from her. Yes from you even sheet she would that's right. You're very busy man. Dump on you too much but that's sort of no no it will happen from time to time now. We've put some really interesting stories to discuss today and we'll tackle a question this new new theory surrounding the the mystical planet nine. We've spoken about planet non two or three times because they're still looking for it but now they've come up with a new. ID which is he's quite interesting. Indeed captivating. Even we are also going to talk about the discovery of a galaxy cluster far far far far away. I think was the headline in fact I think it's set a world record for the most distantly observed object or something to that effect so we'll check that at and we talked last week about Australia. GIFTING NASA says some mom to Mueller two dollars fifty. I think it was after Jesus was taken out also further consideration to Australia's expertise in the mining and medical industries that could help NASA within its mission to the moon so we'll we'll have a look at that as well so I up Fred the the hypothetical planet nine they they have a new ID that is not a planning tool. Yeah there is a new paper which suggests that this object actually not be a planet that be something called a primordial black hole and primordial black holes are thought to be to have been basically basically a consequence of the big bang the something that's been in the theory for a long time we don't really have any observations that support their existence but they are thought to have popped into existence more or less in the aftermath of the Big Bang as a result of density fluctuations that early period in the universe's history now as you know from the way the Stephen Hawking did in the nineteen seventies black holes evaporate they lose the energy they lose their mass through radiation and they take a very long time to do that but these primordial black coast thought to be very small and they evaporate quickly saw that perhaps many of them have already evaporated but some of them might still exist exist even though as I just said they've never been observed now the so the returning running to the story planet nine this object has been surmised by the alignments in the obits of actually what it called extreme transnet tune objects things way way beyond the orbit of Neptune which highly elliptical or even get it orbits and and they are basically aligned rather well in in a particular direction the alignment of their elliptical orbits. That's that's the main reason why people think that there is an extra an additional planet out. That's basically providing the attractive forces doing that with a massive through their observations and through the mathematics that something is out there affecting these yeah tune objects that's right they something with a mask between half and twenty times the mass of the earth that say the current basically the current theory now the I guess the paps one view of what that might be is a free floating planet. That's been captured by the solar system in other ones. The gravity of the sounds grabbed onto this thing and they've got planet nine so what's the office of this particular. New Research have looked at is the likelihood of that capture scenario compared with the solar system capturing capturing one of these primordial black holes. It might be looking around. He turns out to be about the same so what what it means. Is that you know if it could could be a free floating planet. Yes it could it could also equally well be a black hole now. This is a black hole say say around the five times the mass of the Earth would have. I love this bet. It would have an event horizon around about ten ten centimeters in diameter. Think of things in astronomy is enormous and say something like that. It kind of goes what yeah. I think if I remember rightly the event Horizon Diamond. I think it's a diameter for the earth is about eighteen millimetres wrote about in cosmic chronicles but I don't have a copy suck up the they'll be enough. Well put myself at the vote. Count could look it up because it's still go over the files but yeah so anyway too few. Basically a few centimeters is that we're talking about. The size of earth sized primordial black hole so how'd you find. It's well what the proposal is from. The office of this paper cut is to look for the annihilation signal from the matter micro halo around the primordial black. Oh we don't don't really know what dark matter is but it could be that dot matter anti matter annihilate and would give a signal that might be present in x rays and gamma rays so what they're suggesting is that the should be dedicated searches for moving sources basically with accent Gamma Ray radiation that's a really interesting thing because the gamma ray sources that we see in the sky and the x ray sources else's house is a very brief so you don't see the moving tow but the x ray source of course roll things at great distances which are not moving across across the sky at all because they're so far away not seem to be moving but if you've got an object that is moving slowly through the stars of the Milky Way which is why I would think pipe planet nineties rich xrays then maybe this is the answer that you're seeing the annihilation of the micro Halo around the primordial black home up until now we've been looking for a solid object we've been looking planet and it's proven elusive we also or know how very hard at ease to observe a black hole and with only recently photographed one for the first time in history and that's been published so where does it promote primordial blackhall fit in the scheme of things in terms of being able to observe it. You said we think that exist. We've never seen it. We can't prove it yet so could this kill two birds with one stone we observe blackhall and solve the planet non-real unreal so for the first time it would observe we observe primordial black holes exactly that killing to budge on stone elegant yeah well obviously there's a lot of work going into trying to find this thing because it's it's close to home for us we we. We really need to see what's out there. If that was discovered the you know the first thing that would happen. We'll be people be thinking about sending Space Mission to ask that very question. It would take a long time. Wouldn't it take echo world. Yes because it's a long long way out but it's still a lot nearer than the nearest star other than the already proven we can send things vast distances schism with today's technology getting getting there and the instrumentation required to recordings and ratings things would would be fairly fairly simple compared to you know the seventies so that in itself is is a bonus but you go to find the damn thing. I that's the problem right interesting new theory on planet nine it could be could could be a primordial black hole. You're listening to space nuts Andrew Dunkley here and Fred Watson they this episode is he's brought to you by Hewlett Packard Enterprise at a busy small business keeping up with it can be challenging hyper converged composer cloud or say a artificial intelligence. You know what that is. You've been to the movies but what do world ending robots have to do with your business. You don't have to master all all of this to take advantage of it at. HP Get it solutions designed for you. Keep your small business secure with cyber threat protection get money saving flexible financing offers and more learn how at HP DOT com slash small business space nuts. I just want to remind people about our youtube. Channel and building up caught a little audience on Youtube. If you're a a youtube subscriber maybe like do subscribe to the space nuts podcast via youtube. They've even gonNA play all button. Fred which means that you can just play and listen into all one hundred and seventy three episodes nonstop Oregon. That's pretty cool. We're aiming to get a thousand subscribers for up to three hundred and thirty five as of of this moment which is fantastic but if you'd like to subscribe to our youtube channel went cost you eyebrows rossouw YouTube dot com slash c slash space nuts and go for have to but if you want to it's the for you to peruse or actually get to listen to it as as well now. Let's talk about this this idea of using Australian technology to help NASA with the next mission to the moon. We're talking talking about mining technology and medical technology in a remote sense because let's face it when we go to the moon or wherever you you can't sort of break your leg and and got a hospital or you can't sort of you know get someone to to drive a truck foyer Roya. There's all sorts of things to consider with these remote places when we went to the moon in the sixties and the seventies but looking looking back we probably did it in a radical way or I'll put it in those terms compared to this so I think it compared to the safety terms observe today at very high risk and we're much more risk averse these days so this yeah this story's covers many bases actually but it's all about really the the fact that we now have a fairly close relationship between Australia and the United States in that space agencies thanks to the announcement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison a couple of weeks ago strategy will contribute one hundred fifty million dollars to the US mission sending humans to Mars by the Moon to to the moon and then onto Mars and we know that most most of that money is expected to return to the Australian economy because it will build about Australian technology being used and just to to a comment briefly. That's exactly the kind of thing that where good at is making autonomous vehicles that can actually do their own thing and think about batted and be safe as well they used very much in the mining industry on the particularly in the in the Pilbara region of Western in Australia. The have driverless foliage trucks which are actually run from the city of Perth which is about a thousand isn't miles away sixteen hundred kilometers so that is technology. That's fairly well developed in Australia and may well have an application to you know the the exploration of perhaps the the moon where maybe ice mining could take place near the South Pole region. I should point out to these. These are not small trucks. These ties that tower over whole man Lee probably till you need a big ladder to get into the driver's cabin will be that's why they don't have driver's so yes the this all sorts of contributions that this kind of technology could make you quite right it it it does have implications for any kind of medical emergencies and things of that sort as well yeah so they'll be a little work to to be done into the future on that but I can imagine that had the capacity to drive a remote vehicle on the moon from Earth wouldn't be that difficult because this I think you you'd almost have real time. Control compared to Mas yeah that's right so it still would have degree of autonomy so that it didn't really. Oh you know accidentally dropping to a big hole before the before the signals got back to us to say I'm dropping into a big house or something like that. Yeah there will be technologies. I'm sure all right watch this space now fred. Let's just move straight on to our next story and this is the world record the discovery of a distant galaxy cluster so distant in fact. We're looking back thirteen point eight billion years or thereabouts so we haven't looked any further than this ever before. It's about thirty billion light years away. I think is the best distance we're talking about which is only the F. The fraction short of the time of the Big Bang so we are really looking. Weiwei way back in time yes exactly so looking back to a time when the universe was eight hundred million years old which he's roundabout six percent of age at the present time so it's a long way back and of course the key to this is the finite speed of light so what we're doing is looking the very very distant objects and seeing them as they were this time in the past Why is it a big story because this is the earliest that we've seen a cluster of galaxies individual galaxies of been found already this very early period in the universe but to find a cluster essentially tells you a little bit more about the way the the structure of the universe evolved it shows that Galaxy Alexa clusters were there this very early time in the universe the the thinking is as you and I spoken about before is that the the web of dark matter that fill the early universe basically acted it was a web in this almost in the woods with resembling account of honeycomb. I suppose three dimensional honeycomb of Dot Mata which acted as the seeds for the locations of galaxies because the dot Matra attracted the hydrogen region that was in the universe which collapsed informed stars and galaxies and so maybe in in some ways it's not surprising because we think got web of dot matter came very early in the history of the universe and so to find the fact that galaxies themselves are congregating around the in the center. The high-density centers of matter is is one. You'd expect you'd expect to find clusters of galaxies. This basically proves that is the case. It has a very very nice name. It is called Zad six six wchs. Od It's got a there is a giant galaxy within in it. This is often the case with classes galaxy. Find a giant galaxy near the center. This one basically also has gigantic lexi which is known by a rather nice name. It's he mieko which is a mythological queen of ancient Japan because this has been the study's being done by Japanese Japanese astronomers so that that you know giant galaxy is one that you'd expect to be sitting near the center of this cluster of galaxies because that's the way we see these objects in the universe today when you say a cluster of galaxies in today's universe the big galaxy that kind of nucleus galaxy is right in the middle but he Meco isn't. It's quite a away from the center of this baby cluster. Perhaps five hundred million light years from the Senate which is kind of know why nearly isn't it edit is part of the cluster and I understand that the way they were able to determine its distance was through something we talked about last week in resulting in response to a question question have blue shift. They were able to read the redshift. Is that right that's right. That's how you determine these distances you look for the way the light is shifted to the red because they the further traveled along its traveled through space. The further it's light is shifted to the body expansion of the universe dumb question from now on in particular but is out galaxy part of galaxy cluster. Yeah it's part of something called a local group which is a small all cluster of galaxies but there is a where on the edge of of a big cluster which one is virgo cocoa. Those terrible isn't it Fred. That's right again. I guess who am I. What do you do become from Tom. Fred is trying to figure out fascinating that they've discovered an object or a galaxy cluster further away than anything else has ever been observed but in real terms and it set a world record for the most distantly observed object as far as I'm aware it seems a bit contradictory to say it's a world record and yet it's it's something that's further away than anything we've ever seen before going to be a world record. It's a universal record out of this world. Record is indeed yes you. You're listening to this podcast episode one hundred and seventy three my name's Andrew Dangling with me of course professor Fred Watson Mirror narrow space nuts another big shoutout to ask supporters via patriotic dot com we building numbers they which is is fantastic if you would like to contribute to space and that's podcast you can do so at patriotair dot com slash space nuts pop along and have a look if it's not for you that's fine but maybe maybe it is and it's totally your call. It is patriots dot com slash spice nuts. If you'd like to be a supporter of the space that's podcast now. Fray a question Marine One into die because we're doing it but it cramming because you've are you going to sell a book now. Dear esteemed Professor Watson an Andrew. Thank you for your previous on reply. I have another question if you would con- John Yes. That is the question Fred by the way we're finished. He says this is from Wiz. Smith in Panama City in Panama the city Beijing Florida. Oh what a horrible place if fuel could be mined from the moon for a Mars mission launch from Lunar Orbit With consideration of Vol- planetary alignments would there be any economy and using the earth for gravitational assists to help speed that transit that is a really interesting question. We've talked talked about mining on the moon and the fact that we could go go they light white because we could produce fuel from the the water ice. That's day to to to make a return journey but what if we SORTA went hang on a minute. We're already out of a bit out of this. gravitatational failed why not just keep going. We'll we'll get fuel on the moon and PIMM wafted optimize so that's pretty well what would happen what you just described. Thanks question was your your your leaving leaving getting stuff off the moon than you told your your fuel up to low Muno of it and that means you gotta get spacecraft. Essentially in orbit around around the Moon from Earth. That's fairly straightforward then you've got to boost it though to the right velocity to get it out to the Mars and doing that from the moon and he's not that much different from doing it from us you could depending on what time of the multi do you could give yourself an extra one kilometer per second on three one kilometer per second from the moons orbital motion around the earth but it's not vastly different so the the only thing is thinking about all right so that you leaving the moon Would you use us for gravitational assist. It's it's it's possible and if you were really stopped for fuel you know if you if you needed to economize on fuel and tops one reason why you might want to do that is if you've got a very large spacecraft. That's very fuel hungry then yes maybe you could put the your vehicle in a nobody would actually not get to Mars but come back intersect with the orbit of the Earth get a gravitational assist from the US and then be boosted stood out to the always have miles but all that demands a lot of very careful alignment of the earth in miles. You might find you could only do that once every every ten years or something like that that you wouldn't have many opportunities and so. I think what's much more likely to happen is yes. He might well fuel up in lunar orbit but then it will be a direct pass by what's called the Hohmann Transfer Ellipse from the orbit of the Earth Moon wound system directly to the MAS without bothering to try and make gravitational assist. I think it would it will be very difficult thing to achieve. It's certainly possible but I think in reality. We'd wind up just going directly yeah. Of course the other thing to consider is you'd also have to produce enough fuel. We'll get all the way there. Would we be in a position where we would have to consider enough fuel to get back just in case we couldn't make ticket on Mars like we didn't walk on the moon. Let's assume we've got that technology and we've started doing that. The first trip demise it would have to double the fuel light scholley to to get back well. That's right although you could. You could send a robotic spacecraft to to basically basically rendezvous with Mars Mars orbiter or something like that. Lori field up yet. My guests Andrew said this before is I bet the first human flights to Mars Up. She doesn't want him but learns on Amos satellites. Why do you think that because it's a low woah gravity destination you you have much lower risk of getting stuck on the surface. If you're in a low gravity environment like that you can leave Damus with the Toyota Corolla. You don't need a spacecraft escape. Velocity is forty kilometers an hour is that all about they get off with a decent pushback push by could do when I was a kid. That's the fastest I ever could have back up to forty kilometers. It is an downhill with tile weaned but it was yeah yeah. I I had a spade. Auerbach could have probably gone faster except it was one of those spade is that leans against the tar and they took a lot of effort to one British short knocked off at least five ks but yeah those days yes yes but it sounds like you could get off dame. Also the pushback yes. The piddle gets a bit of a worry really. Wouldn't it be disappointing. Pointing to land on Day. Moscow was close so close. Yeah yeah well we who knows let's let's wait and see with coverage on space nuts in twenty thirty five when it happened yes in human. There are no delays. Where's thank you so much question. Had the cabinet and we certainly do love to get your questions inquiries in comments. Sometimes people just send us the beautiful space pictures which is is fantastic and now I've seen a lot of them. Popping up on the space nuts podcast group people sharing their photographs and there's been some amazing photography. One of our listeners is already a major prize winner and is going after another prize so hopefully people are voting for him on the People's Choice Award. They don't know what I'm talking about. Joined the group and have a look and thank you as always fred for your contribution. I don't think we could do it without you. Oh that's very nice. I don't think I could do without you so you could anyway. We'll speak next time. It sounds great all right very good. Thank you for a Professor Fred Watson Astronomer at large part of the spice nuts crew as you are too and thank you for joining US each and every week we will be back again again in a week or so with another edition of Spice Naps this new to this space nuts subscribe to the food podcast on itunes and stitcher or your favorite podcast distributed another cast production from thoughts dot com.
Have We Got the Universal Model Wrong?
"I love this podcast. Support this show through the acoss supportively. It's up to you how much you give. And there's no regular commitment. Just hit the link in the short description to support. now fifteen seconds guided journal. Ignition sequence Nuts three to four pack as what it feels. Good hello once again. Thanks for joining us on the space. And that's podcast. My name's andrew daca your host and with me always well actually. He's not there now. Professor fred watson lodge just introducing you when you walked away is all well series day today. You don you. Then he knew it. Yes. that's right the sixtieth. That's absolutely right. yes See how professional we don today mani malai. He because the headphones and that's kind of salem. Hi andrew hi. i'm good. How are you somebody actually off the other day if we could get you on the podcast again. Because they they they like the dark skies project and everything you do and i said well this was misty west ever in the united states and i said well actually you know we should get her on again so there she is. Hello hello hello everybody. Happy dax skyway last dot skyway. Oh okay a huge wake. Isn't it yeah. And of course yuri's day refers to eureka garen because today's the anniversary. It is the twelfth of april that we're recording this that he made his epic journey into spicy was up there for. What was it one hundred eight minutes or something all. Yeah a lot. Less light pollution from spain to say yes. I can imagine. Leave you thanks. Thanks bonnie thank you so after that rather unusual start we introduce professor fred. What's an astronomer. Telo him though we also ripa. It's an absolute refund. I'm glad she. I'm glad money came in and reminded me of that because i did. I did talk about it on my radio. Show this morning about uruguay gardens. Epic flight and yes a in sixty one hundred sixty one and you know that was one of the things that i was still at school then and thinking what should i do with my life. I know there was any was this. Is that there was an eclipse in february. And i thought yeah. I think this is going to be my career but when you went into space that just clinched it and it kind of was a wakeup call for the united states because that would toying with the idea of space travel but having the russians get up there at such a tense time between the two countries kind of went. Whoa wait a minute. We've got to do something about this. It all began dis. And it's such a sad into incredible achievement when when he died too. You would think something is dangerous. Going into orbit for the first time would probably put you on the brink of some untimely death but it all went awry on the grand basically did he did die in crash. I think it was an aircraft on it was it was a very. I think they've done an inquest. That is since suggested that his death was attributed to turbulence from another aircraft. So that's the way. I read it. Yeah he will never be forgotten for what he achieved seventy years ago. So it's yuri's day today. The twelfth of april now fred after that quite a straight down the line beginning to the program episode two hundred and forty eight. We're going to just have a quick word about ingenuity because that's just about the happen and my will have happened by the time you hear this. We're also going to analyze some physics because it's possible. We've got the universal model wrong possible some new findings about the aurora jupiter and some audience. Questions from richard. In brisbane and tom toronto canadia. They hide it when i say that that. Let's talk about ingenuity again. We've been talking about it every week for the last few weeks. But that's because it's starting to really get close to this This impending launch of a helicopter on mars and hopefully hopefully by the time this Podcast is out there in the eighth that it will have happened in being successful. Yeah we hope to. The news we have as of today is a test. I think a couple of days ago to test fly. The rotor was aborted by the the helicopters on board computer. Which i don't like it. It says they were trying to rev up their. These rotors go around. Two thousand four hundred rpm can bite the martian the thin martian atmosphere and it was while that was happening that this computer detected some kind of issue which was not necessarily a problem. But i think there's something called a watchdog timer shut the thing down because of a potential problem and so presumably they'll be lots and lots of lots and lots of post-mortems about that. Find out what it was but as far as we know the first light is now resheduled to wednesday this week. Which means that. Donald probably be thursday time here in australia. And so if you're listening to this and it's happened that's fantastic and the hope. The news is good will report on it next week. Probably yes yes indeed. We've had to record early this week because of an impending travels so week we couldn't white until the actual event before we could record the. Hopefully everything went swimmingly. If something goes wrong. They can't ditch on mars because there's nothing to land in waters goodson but it's fingers crossed for for ingenuity his inaugural flight which this got so many people excited. It's getting a lot of chatter across social media on some of the astronomical and space facebook pages and instagram pages. And so on and the news you put ingenuity india search engine and the news button. This list enlists long list of stories so it is quite an astonishing of ingenuity if they pull it off and i'm very confident. They will very hopeful right. Let's move on to our next story fred. And this this is a about some experiments that have been done some dating back some decade and a half in regard to a sub subatomic particle called immune. And this sort of tells the story of the why this particular particle is behaving which has got a few people scratching their heads. Because it's not doing what they thought it should do. And that's led to some speculation that we might have the model of the universe wrong and they've just released some new datta as at this month. The seventh of april that puts a little bit more white behind what might be happening and whether or not we have got the universal model wrong. What what's your take on this following this story. Yeah that's right. So the the bottom line is that. For some time there are two laboratories involved. Here one is the the let me get this right brookhaven national robot laboratory and fifteen years ago. They basically discovered something odd about murals. Excuse me now. One of the suite of hisashi seventeen subatomic particles. If you if you don't count the antimatter particles. It goes up quite a bit. Put them as well. But of course there are particles with opposite electrical charge to the normal ones so the seventeen particles when you include the higgs bozon hunter one of those that suite of fundamental particles. Excuse me there. A bit like electrons but different they are what called leptons that puts them in a category which is different from the quarks which i think a bigger if my understanding is right but the mu on are very important in our understanding of them is fairly complete they come in to the atmosphere as cosmic rays. That's sort of the story started. You know sixty seventy years ago probably more years ago so they were behaving in a strange way an and the the issue is actually to do with the way they behave. Behave in magnetic fields. The way they move and it's all about spin and things of that sort have lost the page. I was looking at all this where it is on my screen. So i'm i'm winging this but the real issue now is that fermilab which is a high energy laboratory in the united states have effectively confirmed that original measurement that there is something wrong with the with our understanding of the. You know the way the meal to behave. What why is that important. Just start because if you if you look at what we call the standard model which has seventeen particles and the charge and magnetic field will very very very well understood as is strengthened an orientation of the magnetic field which is something called the magnetic moment until all those all of those things well understood but this new behavior is confounding. That and this is why people do particle physics experiments andrew. Because what we're really looking for is holes in the standard model things that don't fit because we know from observations principally of the universe the astronomy stuff which is. Why are we talking about this. We know that there are things that we simply don't understand dark matter dark energy being the to perhaps the two biggest dark matter is some kind of subatomic particle. We believe whose identity is completely unknown. Theories called super symmetry a few years ago. That suggested that these were particles that fit into this super symmetric framework. Axioms and neutrally knows where the two things that were being suggested. But there's no evidence that they exist until you crack the standard model and find gaps. Where new physics could creep in. You can't in vote these wild theoretical ideas because that was all they are so. That's why it was exciting. And last week there was a news release from fermilab that said they've confirmed basically confirmed the brookhaven national laboratory result. There is something that we don't understand and that gets everybody excited the standard model. Is you know what what what we're really trying to pull two pieces. Innocent of course when when physicists particle physicists get it goes something like gee look at that for larry. That's pretty you probably now the gets thrown. Get more excited. Actually because maybe sometimes telescope use the same joke about mater the other day. but it's recyclable. Say gosh i'd at a golf a lot too. Yeah so that's the exciting. I have to say on my reading of this. I thought yeah good on this fantastic and so the plan is to do more experiments however on i think it was yesterday or the day before tentative april year over the weekend essentially a new paper was published. And i'm not reading that paper much reading from the compensation article that goes with it. This is by a group of theoretical physicists. Now they're the ones who build the mathematical framework within which these things operate and they have essentially looked the theory again to see whether that's right. The put yes. So the author of that is a gentleman called zoltan four-door at penn state university and he put He put it very very nicely in his conversation article when the results of an experiment don much predictions made by the best theory of the day. Something is off fifteen years ago. Physicists brookhaven national laboratory discovered something perplexing nuance a type of subatomic particle. Were moving in unexpected ways. That didn't match. Theoretical predictions was the theory. Wrong was experiment off or tantalizingly. Was this evidence of new physics. And so what they've done while i'll read on that because he puts it in a nutshell. Physicists have been trying to sell this mystery. Ever since one group from fermilab tackle the experimental side and on the seventh of april twenty twenty one released results confirming original measurements. But my colleagues. And i took a different approach and i'll read on. I am a theoretical physicist and the spokesperson one of two coordinators of the budapest marseille book. Brutal collaboration this is a large scale collaboration of physicists who have been trying to see if the older theoretical prediction was incorrect and we used a new method to calculate how you interact with magnetic fields. That's a long quote from the conversation article but absolutely sums it up. What they've done is said. Well wait a minute let okay. The expert doesn't agree with the theory. And you've checked experiment by bringing grand new thermal results to the table. What about the theory is the theory absolutely watertight. And so they. This group have read revamped. The theory they've looked at it again and what they say is my teams. Theoretical prediction is different from the original theory and matches both the old experimental evidence and the new fermilab data if our calculation is correct it resolves the discrepancy between theory and experiment. It would suggest that there is not an undiscovered force of nature. So there's a real hot a real cold water pipe this have to say but you know this is what you've got to do when you're probing really what you might call the final secrets of the universe higher dimensions all the things that we wonder if we're seeing signs with the dark matter when you're doing all that you've just got to be sure that everything is correct and certainly this group believed that the theory the previous theory was wrong and their new theory matches the results. That are getting so disappears. I'm sure that there will be much debate in physics world about this and it's one of these things that will not resolved easily. They'll be people taking sides on it and arguing the toss. Meanwhile more experiment will be done. And maybe the results will be cowed dot. Billy if it's the theories this wrong that's not going to get you anywhere. So we're in a kind of stalemate position andrew. I think it's very interesting. It's a really exciting piece of physics but it might not mean yet that we can put our hands on our hearts and say we know what dark matter is because we don't so what they suggest what near the theories were suggesting was that nuance were acting inappropriately or just Doing things that didn't expect but now a new paper suggests hang on a minute. They're actually doing what they're supposed to do. Exactly ruin. yeah all right. Well that throws up my theory. That golf balls made of muanza must be some of the some of the salvator particle. We know about you. Well because my golf balls act inappropriately quite often but they do have in common moons travel at almost the speed of light believe yours do as well as gulf. I barely make one hundred miles an hour. Which is very sad. Very sad indeed. Now i think they'll probably be more on this. Because it's it's one of those pioneering areas of science and astronomy and physics. And they're just trying to figure out and of course at the top of the tree at the moment dark matter and energy and we sonali scratching the service on surface on figuring all this out your listening to and watching the space nats podcast episode two hundred and forty eight with the great fred watson and my good self andrew simply space nuts. Thanks for joining us on the space. And that's podcast. andrew. Dunkley here. Fred watson and thank you to our patrons we've had a few more sign up and we really appreciate your support. You can become a patron through patriarch dot com through super cast or you can make donation through pay pal as we've said many times it's voluntary. You do not have to do it if you have to listen and carry on. That's not a problem or no skin off. Air knows but if you do want to put a few dollars into the cape his going that's entirely up to you but it would be greatly appreciated. We're ultimately iming to make it Fully listener supported so the more patrons we can sign up The close to that targets were jump on our website space and that's podcast dot com and click on the subscribe button for more information. Okay fred. let's talk about jupiter. We haven't spoken about jupiter in a little while. I don't think it looks like they've made some interesting discoveries or a discovery about it's a rural displays. Now we know what they are. The aurorae very very popular tourist attraction. In fact you have many times taken people onto us to see. The aurora borealis up in the northern hemisphere of a raw aurora astrologers dan l. y. Which is harder to say because of the antarctic region. It's a bit more difficult to to get to but down as well. They've made some new discoveries have new insights into what's happening around jupiter. Yeah and this is a story in a way that parallels what we've just been talking about andrew because some we've been talking about magnetic fields of muren's which are subatomic particles now we're talking about the magnetic field of the biggest planet in the solar system. So it's the same topic but going from one side to another so the thing that has been puzzling about jupiter's aurorae is that unlike the earth the aurora occur over a broad area of jupiter's polar caps so let me just pick that a bit to use in modern term which i don't like really let me explain it a bit dogs. Just walk past the window here. Somebody's dog you know. We live next door to know what's going to happen. The probably saw the scalpel and bolted. Maybe on earth the story occur in what's called the auroral circle which really the auroral oval is. Actually what is called. Which explains it. All they don't happen at the magnetic pole itself there they happen in a ring around the magnetic pole centered on the magnetic pole. That's where the aurora her the strongest. and the. it's a sort of naive explanation but this is kind of the case. The reason for that is to do with the magnetic field lines of the us magnetic field. And i mean. We're we're all familiar with what happens to i in filings bah magnet. You put the bag down in the filings trace out that magnetic field lines normally run from the north pole round the outside and come back into the south pole and they are called closed field lines because they're closed they they end up both ends of them on the magnet. Same with the earth but there are what is called open field lines as well which felines it just head off into space and you can sort of imagine that that will be the case and so the open field lines of the ones inside the auroral circle until that's why you don't see rory there because the subatomic particles from the sun spiraling down like they do in the in the auroral oval region and lighting up the atmosphere by exciting the atoms of atmosphere. So that's why it's an auroral oval because of where the field lines actually going to the earth now. Jupiter is different because apparently on jupiter. You get a rory within the whole of the polar cap. It's not just within that auroral circle and this is until now has been the puzzle and there is some new research which seems to shed light on it and it comes from a certain number of institutions including the university of alaska fairbanks geophysical institute and the university of hong kong. A number of collaborations actually thirteen researchers. I think of made this discovery about the aurora. And once again it it depends on theoretical models. We've talked a lot about models today. But the theory is the rory only occupy this zone where the magnetic field lines actually close up and disappear into the and not elsewhere but the new theory these scientists have propounded is essentially one that says the rory can can actually occur elsewhere. They can occur in. Open field lines so Let me let me once again. Read from a much. This is a this is not written by these treaties. So i can read it legitimately. He comes from university of alaska fairbanks. It is press release and it says. Jupiter has a polar cap in which the aurora dazzles but has puzzled scientists. The problem is that researchers were so earth centric in their thinking about jupiter because what they have learned about the soda magnetic field so what they've done is used computer modeling to help their research revealed a largely closed polar region that means where the field lines at going back into jupiter with a small crescent shaped area of open flux. That means where the field lines are going out into. Space accounting for only about nine percent of the polar region the rest was active with aurora signifying closed magnetic field lines but jupiter turns out possesses a mix of open and closed field lines in the pool. Caps and dr delaware made this comment. There was no model or no understanding to explain how you can have a cresent of open. Flux like this simulation is producing. He said it just never even entered my mind. Don't think anybody in the community could have imagined this solution yet. The simulation has produced it to me. This is a major paradigm shift for the way that we understand my latest fears. That's the the the magnetic region around planets it reveal it raises many questions about how the solar wind interact with jupiter's magnetosphere and influences the dynamics so basically you know you've got a situation quite different from the earth and what they're putting that down to is possibly the rapidity of jupiter's rotation because jupiter goes around once every ten hours and you compared with our once in twenty four hours plus the fact that you've got this enormous magnetic field around jupiter so and very very large might need us and so what. They're suggesting is that. They reduce the impact of the solar wind. And it means that perhaps the magnetic field lines are more likely to be closed up on jupiter. it's there is the other. There's another thing about jupiter though that's weird and we know that this comes about because of spacecraft measurements budge jupiter's moon eeo or i o which is the innermost moon highly volcanically active. It's kind of electrically linked to jupiter. Because you can see. A transfer of material between along the magnetic field lines from mayo to jupiter itself in fact to the polar cap. So this all kinds of complexities there. But at least there is something that is better understood. Because of this theoretical model jupiter's magnetosphere a talk about the magnetic field of jupiter and obviously had trying to think of jupiter the way we think of earth was probably always going to run it runs into a brick wall because very very different planets is jupiter's magnetic field generated different way to that of earth. We think it's probably the same. But you're absolutely right to focus on that. Because we don't know what the middle of jupiter i mean. The earth's magnetic field is generated by the iron coal and that seems to be likely the something like that will be the middle of jupiter. But it might not be on. Some people postulate that. Jupiter has a core of metallic hydrogen. Work that one out this turn into a metal which would become ducting so that might also generate the magnetic field but honestly we don't know juneau. The juneau spacecraft which is still active around jupiter one of its tasks is actually probing the innermost secrets of jupiter in terms of its core. If it has. It has a solid core. We don't even know that it hasn't summit cove but it seems likely given the this magnetic field you've got that's got to come from somewhere so we might know more juneau's mission is finished. I mean there are probably papers that are coming out of this now. that haven't really been keeping up with but it's prob- probably our best assistance to understanding what's going on with jupiter juno spacecraft. Yes indeed all right. Well it's taken a while but we've suddenly decided we need to treat jupiter like something that it's not akin to earth which makes sense. I'm aware it's a guest. Giant is closely related second cousins twice removed but made what it has in common use was made from the same cloud of dust. So kinda know what it's made of you know how that's distributed within within yeah lies but some fascinating findings. This is space. And that's the podcast about space space science astronomy and all sorts of other stuff. Thanks for joining us on episode two hundred and forty eight more space. This is space nuts episode. Two hundred and forty eight with andrew. Dunkley and fred watson for the other day somebody pointed out that for two weeks in a row. We both wore pink shirts we did. Did we do it on purpose. No it was a complete accident. I notice today. We're both wearing navy blue. We are so of course if you follow us on youtube. You would be aware that 'cause you can watch us. I don't know why you'd want to see are faces. My wife doesn't want to see my face most days but look thank you youtube followers all one point six five thousand of you and you know if you know anybody else who wants to follow us on youtube. Let them know because the numbers ever-growing and we are just about fred. This is really exciting news. We just did that to crack a million downloads of the podcast. Slow knew that. Come as a surprise to you as at las. Can't we down. We'd had nine hundred eighty four thousand downloads so probably by the end of the month or into my we'll probably crack the million. Thank you to everyone who's spent supporting the podcast and for listening for as long as you have and many have been listening for a long time. Some from the very beginning some from about episodes seventy and some started today. And if you are one of those welcome hope you stick around and enjoy the podcast. Whatever platform you're listening on whether it's apple podcasts. Google podcasts teacher. There's a long list of them. Whatever your favorite platform is you'll probably find us and it's time to do some questions fred. So let's get straight into it. And we start with richard in brisbane. Hi fred and andrew. Richard here from brisbane has had to coincidence. Because that's where. I thought he was from love. The show love the content love. The dead jokes at andrew seems to have an endless supply of. It's very sad true. My questions are in regard to dwarf galaxies question one. Is there a common type of galactic centre for dwarf galaxies. Imagine they have some sort of central massive object but is it a supermassive black hole or a soul mass black hole quasar something else entirely or nothing at all and question to when a dwarf galaxy merges with another galaxy such as the milky way. What happens to the central massive object. I assume it's eventually absorbed by the supermassive black hole of the logic. Alexey and if that so does it separate from the dwarf galaxies remnants stars or do they get sucked into a question two and a half and to this what happens when two dwarf galaxies merge. Thanks for doing the job. You do guys. Please keep it up where we were about to stop. But i'm just because of you richard. Let's start with. Is there a common type of galactic set of dwarf galaxies. Yeah it's a really interesting question and that probably is and so. I did a bit of research on this question. Because i didn't really know and there is some work that was published last year actually rather more than a year ago which is actually comes from montana state university and other institutions and the interesting aspect of this is under several of the of the questions in the parts of richard's question because what this group found was massive black holes in thirteen dwarf galaxies. Excuse me bay department. They are now among the smallest galaxies known to host such massive black holes so this is a new insight into our understanding of dwarf galaxies. Because i think the was until relatively recently the dwarf galaxy would not have a supermassive black hole attack center. And so that you when you look pictures of dwarf galaxies. They're pretty ragbag looking things. You know the not terribly well. They often don't have spiral arms. Although summed up do the the to modulate clouds the doorway our own galaxy in particular the large magic cloud. Which you and. I see in our skies you particularly because you live in a fairly dark region of the state where you can see them. In the gilani plowed the large cloud just stops of spiral arms got a little bit of spiral structure and it. Kind of bar across the middle joining them up. That's a characteristic of much larger galaxy. But it's only dwarf and probably smaller than it started out as well because it's having it's certainly it's got is being removed by the gravity of the milky way something called the module and extremists streaming. Gus off cloudy seat in radio radio telescopes so this result that came out last year is really interesting because it does highlight that these dwarf galaxies do have black holes at their center hand. Some of them are what we call intermediate mask lab black holes. You know the ones that seem to have gone walkabout. The way we the selma's black holes. The supermassive black holes these are intermediate so to come down to just a few of the results. They spotted thirteen massive black holes in dwarf galaxies located within a billion light years of of our own galaxy so they're relatively nearby which enough to be because they're fainter than the giant galaxies that we normally looking at all of the thirteen. Galaxies are only hundred of the massive our own milky way galaxy or smaller so that hundred times smaller than the milky way right but they've got massive but they've got black holes that makes them among the smallest galaxies known to host massive black holes. And in fact this work was announced last year. The beginning of twenty twenty the american astronaut michael society had. They have an annual meeting every january right at the beginning of january. It was in honolulu last year. Sadly i couldn't make it mainly because it was in and scandinavia watching there but anyway. That's where this result was published. But here's the crush andrew. The the black kohl's about four hundred thousand times the mass of the sun so that is right in the middle of the intermediate black hole range. It's been on the big side getting towards not far off a million there but it's yes the really are intermediate mass black holes. But there's another punchline to this which i think he's quite extraordinary. These black holes were actively eating material around them. But in half of the galaxy's the black holes weren't at the middle. There were kind of wondering around the galaxy. So that's rather unexpected. You would expect that the massive black hole or a supermassive black hole in the middle of the galaxy is going to be plumped right in the middle because it's where the gravitational center of that object is but in these dwarf galaxies. That's not the case. And i suppose that suggests that the may be the dwarf. Galaxies might be easily disturbed by bigger galaxies so their structure might have been kind of pulled out of out of kilter that makes sense. Yeah the there's a couple of quotes from from the authors of this work one is. This work has taught us that. We must broaden our searches for massive black holes in dwarf galaxies beyond their centers to get a more complete understanding of the population learn. What mechanisms helped form the first magnetic sorry massive black holes in the early universe and there is another quote we hope by studying them and their galaxies will give us insights into how similar black holes in nearly universe for formed and then grew through galactic mergers over billions of years producing the supermassive black holes. We see in larger galaxies today with masses of many millions or billions of times that of the sun so that probably answers to a certain degree the question about what happens when dwarf galaxies merge the the black holes would merge to very probably. That's right the only found one black hole in each of these galaxies if they've found to maybe that would be some evidence for incomplete merger if i could put it that way because i think normally when galaxies merged the black holes merge to there is there is a. There's one interesting aspect of this that we are still at school authorities. Quite an old way of thinking is not agreed upon by everybody but the globular clusters in our own galaxy. Clusters really dense star. Clusters the tube brightest of biggest during the southern hemisphere again. She's well reason for putting telescopes down here because centauri and forty seven to connie the two biggest of these objects in our galaxy and some astronomers thing that what you're seeing globular cluster is the strip down core of a dwarf galaxy. That's how all outer stars pulled off by the gravitation of the milky way but the core of the galaxies is so gravitationally compact that it resists. The what we call the tidal effects of the milky way than stays intact. That actually makes a of sense particularly because there have been one or two what you might call posey. So-called them intermediate black hole candidates discovered an side globular clusters we think there are some of classes. How black holes in which you know highlights the possibility that maybe these are the final remains of some galaxies that got too close to the milky way so basically everything riches asked is possible to sounds great. Sounds like all the answers are yes including question tune which is what happens to dwarf galaxies merge. Their black holes probably merged to okay. What about the quiz our theory that he came up so quasars slightly different category and a kind of extinct now because their product of the early universe where you had the supermassive black holes within galaxies really actively consuming the material around them and they're so active that they're very powerful emitters of radio waves and visible light in fact and so the the quieter regime has gone but maybe i mean scientists wonder if all galaxies go through a craze phase early in their lives. That may not extend to dwarf galaxies. Because you need a pretty big supermassive black hole to really kick off this process and get the kind of activity that you get with a quasar. They richard so the answers to your questions. I yes yes perhaps probably not. And maybe but not necessarily not really. Thanks for your question. Richard and things are going well in sunny brisbane. I'm actually going up to queensland lighter this year we got to go to a wedding so hopefully all will be. Well come august and all remember to take my my high favor medication. Last time we went up there for a wedding. We went in august. And i thought that's only august. She'll be right still win. No guard got me good to off but yeah thanks again richard. Now move onto a question or two from tom in toronto canada. Hello fred andrew. I'm a subscriber and admire if your podcast since about episode seventy coincidentally. I have two questions for professor watson. It's a love this. Your wikipedia page mentions few musical compositions your a pot of had. Is the cosmos inspire your music and does music inspire any thoughts or ideas you might have in your astronomical research and then a really serious question could black holes be safely used in gravity. Assist greetings from snowy. Toronto was snowy new south. Wales victoria and tasmania this week though as we in the northern southern hemisphere go through seasonal changes were all sort of experiencing the same thing at the moment but yes. You'll music fred. He's interested in your music well where to start. So i think say android grew up in a musical family and dad was. My dad was a swing but he played in a swing band. Indeed my brother still does. They were both drummers. My brother's still is hold that against them. He doesn't beyond he gets older job jokes. He doesn't get many gigs. These days for obvious reasons but so there was always music. But it wasn't just swing museum. I mean this is back in the forties. When i was a little one classical music was there as well. And that's what really got me hooked. I like pop music but classical music is something that has been a major part of my life throughout my whole life and to be honest andrew. I'm really glad about that. Because he often provide you with a way of getting away from the from the world. It's a really solid thing to be able to listen to a piece of music that you know is going to be your happy place. Whether it's beethoven sibelius bribes whoever is all great stuff so steppenwolf steppenwolf. Yeah i can do that as well. Okay yeah because i've got fairly broad musical tastes and in the sixties heavily into beatles stones. Y'all all the stuff that was going on then but the other. that's the other side of it so move. Classical music is not entirely confined to listening. And i'll explain that in a second but mostly because they don't play an orchestral instrument for example in an orchestra played violin. Something however i did learn both piano guitar. And in the in the folk era in the sixties and seventies. I did a lot of played in clubs all over. England and scotland hung out with the likes of gerry. Rafferty and billy connolly and people like that who are coming musicians at the time and still play occasionally but not in any sense. The word meaning to i thought i was going to become a professional musician quite it because there wasn't actually look on that good. Never the guy who played with was he's still professional in scotland. Kenny brill of a band called bradford and east fife ready mix concrete company anyway so so the science comes into that because for the last fifty years of written death science songs which perform at signs in the pump and things of that sort but the classical in some ways is more related to the astronomy. Because i got very friendly with because through his work listening to his work on the radio with an australian composer by the ross edwards. Ross is one of australia's foremost classical music composers. He he actually composed the piece that was played on the sales of the sydney opera house on the first of january. Two thousand with an audio into two point five billion people. It's called door mantras. It's a beautiful piece of modern classical music. Not long after that we hooked up the idea of making a musical journey. Through the night sky which is his fourth symphony. And choral work. It has two choirs to sing it. And and i wrote the words which are essentially the constellations that we recognize stars that we recognize in the western world juxtaposed with constellations. Aboriginal people recognize here in australia. Now they vary from place to place. So i'll start to take selections but he actually won an award. Andrew the two thousand eight opera award for the best. Choral work of the year because it came on a cd. So being the israelis forming rights association. That's exactly right. The two things are very much intertwined in my brain and can't answer tom's question because i don't know how is that these things inspire each other but they definitely do and i do when i'm writing. I often like this kid's book sounds staff to say the kids book but often subconsciously aware of the structure and a piece of music the exposition development and recapitulation in a piece of. What's what's called sonata. Form often goes into the right things you set off with an idea and you boldly around a bit and then you come out with the same idea but in a different form of the end a once again. Adopting the answers the question. Let's get into the real question anyway. Fascinating the fascinating. Yes he says could black be safely used in gravity. Assist as you. This is like space travel. Yeah it's interesting thought. For and what little i know about the mechanisms of gravity assist suggests that i don't think they could because it's more they don't have the don't have structure so look. I'm i'm kind of guessing here soon. So these are ideas pulled out of the air but gravity. Assist these weird because if you think about it you know what's happening is you're flying. A spacecraft close to a planet is feeling that planet gravity to increase the speed of the space craft but when the spacecraft gone past. Gravity is trying to slow it down. I think if you had a single point that would be what would happen. You wouldn't gain any momentum from the encounter. The expedia gained on the approach to the black hole swimming. You fusty enough not to get sucked in would would match the speed. You'd lose on the way out. So the net zero. Because as i understand it it's to do with the planet's rotation the direction that you approach it in relation to its equator that actually gives you the gravity assist so it's to do with the structure of the planet itself that you can make this momentum change to give momentum to the planet sorry to take momentum to from the planet to assist your spacecraft in its journey so i think is probably no. I'm not sure anybody would want to fly spacecraft close to a black. Oh anyway in case show there are people who would want to whether or not you'd be capable of it and come back to tell the story that'd be that'd be a different thing i imagine so not is the answer to that particular question. We'll follow it up though because it's a really interesting question. And he's into why. Gravity assist works tool fascinating. Thanks tom. thanks richard for your questions knocked over a couple of couple more of those text questions that have been racking up for the last ten years but knock off some more but if you do have a question for us don't forget to visit our website and click on the link and you can send us a text question through the email interface or you can use your recording device whether it's through a tablet or a smartphone or computer and. Just tell us who you are. We from and ask you a question. Happy audio questions as well which we've been doing a lot of lightly but catching on the text questions to and that's pretty well and thank you again. Fred has always great to see you and happy. Trails will catch you again next week. So great andrew. Same to you all the best. Speak to professor fred watson. astronomer large part of the team here on the space nuts podcast. Loda who hugh in the studio who works feverishly to put it all together and adds the nuts and bolts and finds the silly pictures that he puts on the on the graphics when we put them online and from andrew. Dice clay you. Thanks again for joining us. We'll see you on the very next episode of the space. And that's podcast bye-bye to this komo available at apple podcasts. Google podcasts spotify. Iheart radio and all your favorite podcast. You can also stream on demand caught. Stop this is another gas. Production from dot com.
You Asked - We Answer
"I love this podcast. Support this show through the acoss supportively. Joe it's up to you how much you give. And there's no regular commitment. Just hit the link in the short description to support now. Fifteen seconds guided journal. Chan ignition sequence Nuts three to ask what it feels. Good hello again. Thank you for joining us on the space nuts. Podcast episode two hundred forty five. I'm your host. Andrew dunkley and with me again as always is professor fred watson astronomer at large. Hello fred andrew. How you doing good to see you especially now. It stopped raining mime. Wellstone guess at last. We've had a better week's worth of it. And we got triple our monthly average for this part of the world but we didn't get the flooding that has been happening in many other parts of new south wales and queensland and it's been spring pretty hectic and people are still trying to deal with thousands of evacuated. And we've seen houses flooding down rivers and qasr bang washed off causeways. Why people insist on driving through floodwaters. I do not understand better off being light than light if you know what i mean and saying on air on the radio this morning that the last twelve have been extraordinary. It's like the apocalypse we've had severe drought fires then covert nine tain then we had ryan then we had floods. We've got a mass play. A rat plague. We've got a slug blake found. That we've got locust is just so much going on. I can't wait to see the movie. it's just a. It's crazy times crazy crazy times and i fail for all those people are going through. The flood situation is nothing more die than that but it just adds another insult to. What's been a pretty horrendous twelve months. I think it's almost exactly a year since we went into lockdown in australia and so many other countries is still in lockdown. What horrifies may is is so many people still trapped overseas because they can't get home and it's nearly a year. I mean this is just unbelievable. Unbelievable abbott you. You're not in a flood area of sydney i you. You've kind of and more hilly part of the city. We live on ridge. Two hundred meters above sea level. So if we get flooded sydney's gone very very much so anyway we we just keep our fingers crossed all is well now the flood waters will just do what they do rather slowly but we will start to say things. Get back to normal soon. I hope that is what we that was what we pray for in date so afraid. We've got an interesting show today because it is entirely created by the space nuts audience. Everything we do today is based on audience feedback and questions. We've got a little bit of feedback to deal with and we'll do that. We've also got a whole bunch of questions so we might as well. Just get straight into it. Fred f. first question is yeah. It's a text question from peter in south australia. My question is about dark matter and dark energy and the spate of lot. We often hear about how all universities and how far away things are. The two are often measured and modeled in computer situations. I'm curious to know how you factor in dark matter. We hear it comes in clumps. And i'm curious to know what you put into a computer model to allow for dark matter undock energy. Do we know what effect dark matter has on the speed of light. or how. Light reacts with doc mata-. It boggles my mind. Astronomers and physicists get space travel and distances so right without really knowing what doc matter doc energy is or does the effect of this dark matter dark energy only happen when you get get out of the local galaxy cluster. Thank you peter. It's a good question and one. That's probably got a few people. Wondering i imagine fred great stuff peter and in a way. I think you're a loss. The last part of the question sums up what's going on. Does the effect of this doctrine. Doc energy only happen when we get out of our local galaxy cluster to some extent. That's when we start seeing their effects. The interaction of light with dark matter is zero effectively curse. Photons dark matter particles. Whatever they are. They don't talk to each other and we know that because there is no dark matter doesn't reveal itself a by anything that is to do with light for example. You can't see dark matter. Silhouetted against bright nebula and things of that sort in the background. It doesn't block our view so it doesn't actually interact with light at all the only way we know it's there is by its gravitational effect so this is a there is one thing to add to this though. And that's the sort of big picture stuff. The people who look at the universe as a whole both now and three hundred and eighty thousand years after the big bang which is when we conceive back as far as in the cosmic microwave background radiation those both the universe today in the sense of the distribution of galaxies where they placed how they how they string out along these these filaments of the cosmic web that plus the what we call the power spectrum of the duck of the cosmic microwave background radiation which most basically intact plumpy it is in terms of they slide in temperature variations that we see looking back to the flash of the big bang so those are two yardsticks the universe today the universe back then and they both tell us something about the gravitational influence of stuff and that includes both the stuff we can see and the stuff. We can't see a so when you do the analysis of this you actually get these values out for what the total amount of energy is which is something like seventy percent of the energy budget of the universe total amount of dark matter which is about twenty five percent of the energy of the universe and what the rest is and that's about five percent. These are very broad numbers so that that breakdown comes out of just the distribution of matter in the universe and that's why we can actually make these claims the wrong word but but give estimates of what these total mass values are as i said dunk matter doesn't interact with visible with light. In fact with where does she interact with anything except gravity so all the other fundamental forces are not affected by dark matter and dark energy is a property of the universe as a whole. And so you know that the the dark matter the sorry the photons of light and radiation pass through the universe without being affected by doc energy. It's really the matter distribution that tells you about the way these two phenomena hacked on the large scale. I'm really made that very clear. I don't think but it is the way it is and just coming returning again to what i said at the beginning. Pitas last questioned the patron doc energy. Do their effect only happen when we get out of our local galaxy cluster to some extent. That's true because it's only when you start looking very large girl certainly in terms of dark energy that you see its effect dark matter. You've we have to. Lookit galaxies as a whole. There is evidence that dark matter might come in clumps no smaller than about a thousand light years across and so anything within that is going to see its effect because effectively uniform throughout throwing a couple of aspects i. So that's that's i think the to this question. I hope it works. It may too. But i think we've talked before about the naming of these things creating some confusion with people so people hearing the woods dark matter and dark energy. My will get a misrepresentation in their minds as to what this actually is. Is that one of the issues. I think it is absolutely agree. It's rubbish name. I think they're both an invisible matter would be a much better name for dark matter dark energy. I can kind of get because it's see a maybe but maybe that should be invisible as well. of course i couldn't say but they reveal by dot materials reveal by effect galaxies. They shouldn't behave the way they do if it wasn't there. Dark energy is what's tells us that the universe or what we think is the reason for the universe expanding more rapidly the accelerated expansion of the universe one divy. Fred will figure this ad. It's starting to become one of those great mysteries already. A great mystery but one that just keeps bringing up more and more questions and curiosity and like black holes. We're starting to get more and more questions about these. Two things as as we do black holes because this very mysterious as well so it seems like anything dark or black in color in the course is causing a few headaches anyway paid out. Hopefully we we filled in something of a blank for you. We can obviously give you absolute answers when it comes to these strange mysterious things in the universe but appreciate your question. Thank you so much. Let's move onto our next question. This one comes from ralph. No doesn't yes it does it. Comes from ralph in northern california greetings. Chief nuts. I have a question for you regarding the theory of relativity. This is ralph in northern california since the speed of light is finite and constant. Can it be said that. The theory of relativity is well straight by comparison of the relative distances. You are from a light source in other words. The position in space of a light source. Say three meters from my pupils will be far more real time than a duplicate light source three light years away which will be in a different position space. By the time the light reaches my that it was when the photons began their journey and that same light source. Only three hundred meters from my pupils would be the tiniest amount less real time than three meters and so on it's all relative to perceived locations based on travel time or time travel of photons relative real time of the receiver versus actual real time of the amidror or something like that anyway. Thanks for the great shows. Keep it up and can't wait for perseverance to hit mars. Thank you ralph. Obviously this question came in before. Perseverance landed in with glad to be able to report. Ralph the land things. I and it's they've moved and i do believe fred they'd just about ready to test the helicopter so yes getting super exciting mass next big step. That's right okay. Yes go ahead to rows question. Okay well question. Yeah actually the point that ralph makes his is a very good one and it's excuse me one of the reasons why why in the very early phases of einstein putting together. His special theory of relativity relativity is one of the reasons why did and it what ralph is talking about. The notion of simpleton were the things that happen simultaneously in the universe happened simultaneously everywhere and that actually was certainly one of the things that went into thinking on the special theory of relativity newtonian universe. The old-fashioned universe says that if something happens in the universe everybody sees it simultaneously but for exactly the reason that ralph has mentioned the spitfire speed of light. That's not the way it works. Similar net simultaneity doesn't really have a definition in relativistic universe. Because your perception of two events is going to depend on how far away event is so if something supernova explodes at the same time in two widely separated parts of the universe unia one and far away from the other. You're going to see the near one. I and to and to extent for all purposes for all practical purposes. The the timing of an event is actually the timing that you see it rather than the time when it really happened in some sort of absolute sense because that's the only way the information can come to us. Nothing can come to us. Faster than the speed of light so uc one supernova going and then forty years later you see another one going off. Because he's taken forty more years for the light to travel. They might have been simultaneous in the absolute. If you could look at the universe from the outside they might have been simultaneous. But they're not in terms of our perception of them and our perception polls the thing we've got yep or what or the first one could have been the second one to explode similarly yes the older and that brings into effect consideration all kinds of things like what causes something to happen cause and effect being in the right order which actually some modern theories of the reality of the universe. They dispense with the idea of causality. I think stephen hawking was working on one of those anyway. What what ralph has said is a very nice summary of the fact that things are not quite the way we think in the world of relativity indeed Sorry news story. Today actually It was in the popular press Which is my nas wire saying that the headline sales the story and then the truth is very boring. But this one said star explodes and i thought Kay that saw the hollywood or astronomy. And i thought we're talking about a nova. And i thought someone was in the studio with me. The thomas had had chick this out. They've they've said a star has just exploded. My it's happened billions of years ago and sure enough. The headline was designed to get you in because they made it up that this star exploded yesterday. What actually happened was this. We've got remnant light from a supernova going back billions of years which is not sexy enough to sell a headlines s. It's all relative fred the relative as or okay. Thank you ralph for your question. Appreciate hearing your voice to. It's great to get these these these audience questions in and we're going to bunch more to come here on the space nuts. Podcast stick around for all from space. Nuts this is the space. And that's podcast with andrew dunkley and professor fred watson. Just want to shout out to our patrons growing in number steadily. Thank you for your financial support of the space. And that's podcast. We appreciate the you. Enjoy it enough to put a couple of dollars a month into the into the kitty did capes going al patriot numbers. We're aiming to get five hundred one hundred and thirteen patrons in there now. You can also join super cost if that's your preference or you can log on to our website and click on the support space and that's button and see what options there. I can do one off donations through whatever platform you choose account. Remember the name of it right now but you can also donate through. Our distribute distribution platform called a cast. Now this is purely voluntary. I i'm not gonna make you do this. We're not going to force you to do it. It's an option. But if you are doing it or you're thinking about doing it that's fabulous. We really do appreciate it. We do want to make the podcast. One hundred percent listener supported. So that's the goal and we'd like to get up to a thousand patrons and you can start from as little as four dollars fifty a month if you want to become a patron of the space nuts podcast and we've got some ideas on rewarding out patrons which will tell you about a little down the track not only with bonus material but Other other options so fred. Let's move onto our next question. This one is a repeat question. But i love how he puts the full stop on his questions. It's of the truck driver. There space knots my roger. I'm a truck driver. I've called in before tonight. I'm traveling across new york. State year and a little bit of a snowstorm was listening to the show where you were talking about binary stars nadda couple of questions When i was young and someone point out the second star in on the handle of the big dipper was told that it was a binary system was also told it was the astronomers i tests for if you could see that faint star with the naked eye then you had pretty decent fishing and i made a note of physicians. Those two stars and thinking over time i would watch the movement of them and here. It's been some forty five years and they don't seem to have moved so at this point. I'm assuming that they're very far apart. Or is it really a binary system and is it possible that you can have multiple stars and instead of just two in a system where would almost resemble a solar system multiple smaller stars orbiting a larger one or anything like that never been seen anyway. Still dig in the show. You guys keep up the good work. I love that drive safe. Please thanks to the question. Roger binary stars as we've discussed are not uncommon. But when you get beyond that into systems three or more it starts to become a fair bit more rare but let's firstly go back to the the system. He was talking about that. He looked at forty years ago. You were nodding your head. So you're obviously aware of what he's talking about. Absolutely in fact rojas mentioned one of my favorites does alcohol which is so we from the latitude of new south. Wales don't see the plow or the big dipper as i think it's called in the us. It's part of the constellation of major the great bear. If you're up in queensland you see if i remember rightly in may nights very low down on the northern horizon but it's a northern hemisphere constellation but one of the stars. The middle star of the handle of the plow has this companion so the styles of the plow really quite bright. The definitely naked ice does but the they're they're a bit like the selling cross down near there spectacularly style particularly when you look at them through binoculars but right next to this middle star in the handle of the plow which is called meizar or measor. Is this little companion. Called alcohol. And roger is right that are core is thought to be gravitationally bound to to miser. Because they're the same distance away and as they move through space and remember we've got the guy spacecraft which is exquisitely precise in telling us about the way stars move through space as they move through space they moved together and so even though there the forty years that rogers talk is not long enough to see alcoves position change with respect to to miso is probably going to take thousands of years to see an a difference but the thinking is that these two actually bound together gravitationally which makes them a binary system but in fact he's more than a binary system. This goes to the second part of rogers question. Because i'll call itself as a companion which was discovered. Buck in two thousand nine. It is not that not that faint. Actually it's eighth or ninth magnitude. It probably wasn't detected early because it's quite close in and it's a red red dwarf star. Which are the communists stars in our neighborhood so that is is also a also co moving with the mizo system. So it's is an in fact. I think there are more self. I think is a quadruple system. So you've basically got six stars which are in a in a sort of cosmic. They are multiple stars and they're all orbiting a common sense of gravity. So yeah it's what is sometimes known as a stellar sextuplet. That's basically what it is. So a rudge's observations gray. I as a said. Every time i go to the northern hemisphere which used to be quite regularly seems to have stopped. If it's if if i've got a clear night i always have a look for alcohol. Suddenly i can only see it through binoculars. Now is roger said. It's a good test if exit with the naked eye. It's twelve minutes away from laser. I need binoculars these days to see it but it's always nice to see so. Thanks for that question roger. i really appreciated. So he's right. There are systems out there that might of stars that resemble solar systems rather than planets. You've got stars opening each other in clusters. Yeah that's right. In fact understand why that would be because we think stars form in much bigger groups. We think they co- call them open. Clusters these newly stars. Sometimes there are thousands of stars in open clusters and eventually dissipate. They drift away. The sun was almost certainly part of something like that. The son might have had a binary companion or even two or three companions which are now long gone. So it's it's it's easy to understand why they should be these multiple systems. Okay thank you very much for your question. Roger it's time for change of accent as we have from binary stars to the stock short mission. Hello my name's dunkin from weymouth those In england long-term listener to the podcast really enjoy. It hope you both whale with regards to the starship mission to elvis toray. Just considering the we don't know the star systems layout that well how many planets are in in rit or where they actually are in their orbits null the rest of it and if we got hundreds even of microscopic spacecraft just a few grams each her linked towards the mid twenty cent speed of law he will impact. Would they have if over sudden there are ten twenty hundreds of lease things flying down through the atmosphere of a planet. Would they reach surface with a burn not pumping given the film's hit the time But they're not going twenty percent speed of law. So i just wondered you know shooting these things off a planet fru we know might be occupied even if not boyer an advanced civilization. Would it have any impact anyway. Thanks very much bye. Thank you duncan he brings up an interesting point about Kind of invading another solar system and perhaps dropping a bundle on a on an occupied planet. Not something you want to do that spade a day of an object. That small would burn up but i suppose it depends on the planet that depends on the atmospheric conditions might not have an atmosphere at all and we just got plowing into it and knock. Someone's block off. I mean yeah. And you and i talked before about Sort of infecting other worlds and some of the things that are being done to try and alleviate that problem but here we are sending stuff off into the never never and hoping we miss certain things. Well yeah let's let me. Let me backtrack a bit to say what what exactly it is. We're talking about here. Don't contrite the the reserve a project it's not a mission it's a project called breakthrough star shot and it's a feasability study rather than an intent to actually do anything although you never know what might happen one day but the feasability studies about the possibility of sending exactly as as dunkin said tiny spacecraft weighing. Just a few grams just a few centimeters across equipped with pretty well. Nothing but a camera and a transmitter which are blown along by laser light so they've got some light sales and you accelerate them using high-powered lasers which don't exist yet to twenty percent of the speed of light and that means it takes you twenty ish years or so to get to the nearest system. Which is the alpha centauri. System proxima is the nearest star. We know that proxima has at least one planet possibly earth like it may even have more than that so it's a really interesting idea. The project and the other thing that don't convention was that the plan would be to launch these things in very large numbers thousands of them and he's blessed them all along with these high powered lasers now exactly as he says we have no idea of of the layout of the proxima centauri system and the odds are if you did this opposing it all happened. We blasted off ten thousand these things towards that star system. The odds are that most of them. I'm probably all of them with numbers like that. Would miss hitting anything because space is so big and the you know that paid if they are travelling at twenty percent of the speed of light. They're not going to be captured. Gravitationally by the star or planets. They're just going to keep on going so they'll head off into the wild blue yonder and probably go for a very long time a quite a know the bit like who coming through our solar system which came from somewhere else and flashed through and then keep on going. It will be very much like that. However to get to the nub of the matter supposing one did have a direct hit on the planet and what saves you is its. Mass is massive. So tiny that even at that speed and there's an atmosphere there it would flash into non-existence in in a split second it might reach the ground but that speed it would vaporize essentially anything solid it could be if that solid was somebody's head. It might not be all that impressive but the the the likelihood is would never hit anything. But it's really it's a really interesting conjecture we talk we. We're very familiar in the world of asteroid impact with what the effective asteroid impact. But they're going that they're only going it. Get a few tens of kilometers per second at most when you get to thousands and tens and tens of thousands of kilometers per second year in a different ballgame and but energy. the energy goes up because connecticut. Energy's half envy. Squared velocity squared so as soon as you get up to these hostilities. It's carrying much more energy but soon as it hit something solid because it's so small it's vaporize it. Would almost certainly vaporizer soon. Hit the atmosphere. Great question though. Lovely thing to to conjecture about to. I'm hopeful that this is a mission that gets the green light and they do it. I think even though the results in the information will be a long way down the track and probably beyond their lifetimes in terms of any feedback. Forty or whatever it is they. I just love to be able to say we are going to send a mission to another star system and and send back data. I think that's the next giant late business for it. Will it is. That's right it is a long way away. I i think what's interesting is what we're talking about the other the other day getting free samples from other star systems coming in like more if we can yeah mount space mission to go and collect something the next time. Something like that goes through then. We've we've got a treasure trove of information. We sure have yeah. Thank you for the question. Duncan and while we're talking about moore moore. It's in the news again. Because to my great disappointment it is not a space doogie. It's a space cowshed as it turns out they they think it's a sliver of pluto like planet that's been worn down by its travels and to end into just described it like a pace of soap and as you use the soap it just becomes that i think that described it as that annoying sliver year. And that's what you're saying. very nice. just a sliver of a piece of a planet. That's the latest news so only like few kilometers. Sorry a few meters across rather than being tens of meters which we thought before. And that's because they think it shiny a really interesting piece of work it's cast new light on ormeau amour seems to explain all properties that we saw. That might be drawing. A line. Dior dea. I think i'll still call it that just for fun. I was deadly serious before. But now it's going to be fun. Now let's move onto a bonus question. This one's got nothing at all to do with astronomy. So what is it a bad. This is andrea from worcester massachusetts. I've enjoyed listening to your show. And i often feel like in the background. I hear birds or a bird. Is it a pet. I guess i was just wondering could you introduce us to the third host of your podcast. Thanks well we do. Have gregory pick. Yeah the rooster. But i suspect. That's not what you're referring to. Fred and i both live in areas that have a vast number of birds. I don't have a pet bird. Used to used to have budgerigars when i was younger. And we still let them fly around the house and crap on everything. But i no longer. So there's no birds living in my house. What about yours. Fred know there is there. Aren't i mean there are the chokes the the rooster. Exactly as you've said gregory peck. There is a bird that i think where it actually rather than the other way round. This is a pure white peacock which took up residence some time ago and comes and goes. He's named bianco. He just kind of wondered around and he has a very unattractive call which is a kind of honk. So it's not that andres is talking about and you just mentioned bird call it bird poo minutes ago most most birds that nothing compared with the peacock you have treated as an obstruction in the road is monumental anyway this descending into different territory i think andrea is hearing the birds. I often record. I am doing now with the door open. We live fairly rural area even though it sydney and often birdsong comes through the door and some some australian birds have the most awful calls cockatoos. I think we've talked about a to screeching. Yeah they screech but a lot of them have got the most exquisite bird calls the most remarkable on is the butcher bird which sounds exactly like this whistling. It's an extra lie so week we had. We had four butch birds at work last week. And now we're doing that beautiful. I have one of the most extraordinary. Kohl's i've ever heard. It is very very very very beautiful. Yeah if you can get online and listen to the butcher birds they. You'll be amazed at the sounds. They make birds that. I have in my backyard. That makes beautiful. Sounds the little wrens. The blue wrens. I've got a couple of families of them. Because i've got my house surrounded by shrubbery and that's perfect for them because it gives them good cover from predators and just jump around the back yard and then with condescend the antastic. Yeah you know. I've become so good at doing the sound of a blue. I can hear them. And go up to the the hague stigma facing and make the sound and they come up to my face to say what this intruder is. They don't realize it's me a human being. I confuse the hell out of them. They must be very very miffed but one day i was doing it in the blue ribbon. The big later of the pack ruffled feathers as if decide. I'm going to get you whoever you are wherever you are. You're in my territory. Beautiful birds so little blue wrens. We get magpies here. They wobble beautifully. Pay wee's corollas cockatoos. Pink and greg galahs this creatures as well we have some beautiful birdlife around here as you to read indeed one. I just heard a few minutes ago. Here is one that you don't have their because coastal and that's whip bird just. Yeah that's exactly what it does. And the other bird that people say smart to listen to go scratching around the internet to listen to some of the bird life. We've been talking about the bell birds. They generally live in in the tops of mountains. But they just make these beautiful chimes. I suppose you'd call travel. And they're a tiny little thing so tiny and they make that amazing sound so in. Answer your question nut chalk it its place but you said you record with the door. When i'm on air at the radio station. I i go live with the front door of the station opened in the studio door open because i like to hear the sounds from outside not care. If they got away with democra- find out sometimes. I'll ask people horn because that just adds to the show. I don't understand this philosophy of sitting in a silent room. It just doesn't make any sense to me. But i think i'm in the minority when it comes to radio but yes thank you very much andrea for your your question. Yes you do. He rightly there. There are birds in the background quite often. While we record the podcast. You're listening to space nuts. Episode two hundred and forty five with andrew. Dunkley and fred watson space matz. Thanks for joining us on the space. And that's podcast. Andrew denton with fred watson ally to all our facebook followers especially those on the podcast group. The space astronomy science podcast group on facebook. It's a growing community. Lots of people get on there and talk to each other about what's happening in stormy and space science. They ask each other questions. Some people ask the questions they're rather than bringing to us. sometimes they do both. It's a it's a great place to go to just sort of get to talk to each other as space nuts followers and i'm sure some friendships have been struck during that process. So check it out. It's called the space and that's podcast grip on facebook. It's the listener generated facebook page. If you like there isn't official space nuts page ican also fall. I wanna follow both and can stay in touch with us that way. We post a lot of material as it happens so you can always be up to date and you can also find sign up to astronomy news later on the on the website space. That's podcast dot com. Now let's get back into the questions and this one comes from michael. I think hi there. This is michael from oregon in the united states mothers australian. So what's up y'all Just wanted to ask a question You probably already answered this question but So when the the earth moves at a thousand miles per hour and the i s. s travels at a much faster rate. I'm just curious how that works. How just continually go so fast and why how that happens Love your love your podcast. You guys are awesome Have a good day. Thanks thank you michael. I pick the accent knew. He was in ozzy straight up now. Let's teacher australian 'isms markle so that you feel more at home and best to your mother. Iss yeah the speed of of all we know about the speed of getting into orbit there are required to get out of the gravitational pull of earth. And you don't really get out of it. You just staife fast enough not to fall back into it. But the spread of all orbit. That's that's an interesting question because you do have to be going lickety-split to to move around the planet. Yes so michael got to his he he postulated earth moves at one thousand miles per hour. But actually it doesn't. It's much higher than that and so and we normally think of it. In kilometers per second that earth moves around the sun at thirty kilometers per second it translates to almost seventy thousand miles per hour did the calculation edges to put it in those units. So that's the first thing. The earth is moving very fast so the international space station is traveling much more slowly than that. It's about nearly eight kilometers per second which is roughly eighteen thousand miles per hour. So it's all about exactly is andrew has just said it's all about gravity so the earth is gravitationally bound to the sun. It's performing this fine balance between its motion and the gravitational pull of the sun. The motion around in orbit is what stops it falling into the some likewise. The international space station is doing the same thing but around the earth but more slowly. So if you had something traveling thirty thousand at thirty kilometers per second the speed of the earth if you had something traveling at that speed it would not be in orbit around the earth. It'd be heading away from a higher than the escape velocity which is eleven kilometers per second so it does all work well. Every time you've got some body in space it has gravity and it can hold things to it either sitting on the surface as we do or in orbit moving around it simple. I thought you were about to say something. Why stop talking now. I never say anything for it. You know nobody would never do anything like this strong so anyway hope that helps hearty among yes indeed. Thanks mike appreciate the question. Let's move on now. This question comes into parts. There was a technical problem with the recording of this question from misty west in western pennsylvania. Another misty also reacted to a post. We put on the space and that's put gas group on facebook about the mass plague here. There's a famous photo. That's doing the rounds on the internet. If somebody who's scooped about two hundred or three hundred mice out of the swimming pool and took a photo of the of the catch yes. That's quite commonplace. I can tell you some horrifying stories of what's been happening around airway mistaken everybody else. If you're interested one family that my wife served in shop last week said they had to move out of their house on a property at sort of double on a farm because there are being woken not by the mice nibbling their fingers and toes or a fine so they. They're going to wait it out in town in a flat. We caught two mice in the radio station. The other day fred and we caught them in live traps so they didn't get knicks snapped. Funny thing is walked into the studio and a soul one mass in this cage. Because it's a it's a one way cage. Can't get at once i get in. They enjoy christmas cake. As it turns it when i walked out of the studio and then went back in there. Were too so what's transpired since then is we. Were a bit slow to deal with them. And one decided. I'm gonna murder the other one and eight it and that's what happened. It's not fun. it's not fun. Another friend of mine who is living on a properties catching two hundred day. He's got all sorts of traps around his house. He's trying different models to see what works best. The one that he finds works best is a bottle shoved into a tub with a bite at the tip of the neck of the bottle and what they do is they walk out over the bottle and when they get to the thin part they fall off into the bucket. He's two hundred and not doing that. It's just incredible but yes misdeeds reacted to that post on the space podcast group because we talked about the mass plague last week and decided that we should give you an example of what's going on but to miss this question. Please sit back. Relax go and make a cup of tea or coffee because this is gonna take a while. I enter and fred. This is misty west from rural western pennsylvania. I love your show. And i wanted to. I really enjoy the personal side of some of the episodes like caring about the local town names in history. The cool birds. We hear in the background fred's cats when the crazy plagues that you keep in australia. I have two questions that they don't seem related. But they do have to do with the biotic evolution of the universe and all the discussion about the universe expanding has been thinking that we're very lucky to be alive. Oh we are so far. Future civilizations nazi other galaxies the way we can and will the they only see their own local galaxy or maybe just a few gravitationally bound galaxies to their. Will the universe in for that happens and could far. Previous civilizations observe more galaxies in may be less black hole or neutron stars or planetary systems or other middle aged universe wonders So that's all one question. My second question is that that made me wonder a lot about how our civilization of all to perceive the world around us and it seems like we observe everything is a wave function. Eclipsing wave function or something like that and i know we've discovered a lot by greatly expanding detectors of electromagnetic spectrum spectrum but so it detects all kinds of things we can't even see but are we looking for other things. That aren't anywhere on the spectrum. like not a wave. i tried reading about particle detectors. And it doesn't it does seem like the ways that we have to measure. Things involve looking for a wave visit possible. There are things in the universe as dark matter. Dark energy don't have a wave function. I hope this isn't just a fundamental question. That i completely missed in high school but i hope seen the articles about it anywhere. At least once i can understand Thanks a lot of your podcast and learning about the universe never gets old. Thanks a lot. Bye-bye very true. Thank you may see what high school you went to. But they never ask me questions like that. Pretty dumb really but i would have loved to have gone to a high school that asks those deepen dock and meaningful questions about life. The universe and everything. Now where do you wanna start fred. Biotic evolution what future civilizations. We'll see compared to what we can say now Indeed that's a good place to start and the best to use the term that i liked very much the middle aged universe wonders. Because i guess we are in the middle aged universe. It's thirty point eight billion years old. That means there have been time has been time for stars to form galaxies to form planets to form and the elements to come into existence. That come in the interior of stars. And sometimes they're explosions. Those elements that make our world to rich place and impact which allow life to to be created. Because they're certainly not not the raw materials of life at the beginning of the universe. However it's it future is a little bit on the bleak side because the moment we us our best understanding the expansion of the universe is accelerating due to this mysterious stuff called dark energy and so as the universe accelerates the time will come exactly as misty postulates that you will only st- be able to see down the track and this is a long long way. We're talking tens of billions of years but down the track. You will only be able to see the galaxies in your immediate neighborhood and for us that means us and andromeda more or less probably the training given galaxy as well and a few dwarf galaxies in other words what we call the local group because everything else. The universe is expanded and carried it so far away that the light will never reach is coming from those other galaxies so it gets to be a rather lonely place and it may well be that if the worst civilizations that phase in the universe they they really might not be able to see all that much in the in the sky that will see the stars of their own galaxy but really nothing beyond when when we think of what we can see by looking through the into the depths of the universe. We see this richness of galaxies and quasars and other things and makes for an extraordinary really an extraordinary phenomenon. Put it that way. I do apologize. There's there's a helicopter taking off not very far from here. I think i know who it belongs to because this might not mean anybody anything to anybody outside australia. But dick smith lives across the road from us. Andrew does he yes. The helicopter very well-known to. I think that's leaving. I don't know what the idea was. He made his fortune in dixon. Self made multimillionaire mighties fortune in electronics. Sold off his franchise and now he's trying to do philanthropic work about buying australian products and keeping the money it's cetera et cetera as ice quite a big voice in in the media these days. Yeah as always has been really has a noisy helicopter hope. It didn't interfere too much with the audio. They're gone now anyway. That's slightly off track but yes so. It's remarkable that we are where we are and when we are you know. They're all kinds of things that you can draw from this. I not optimistic about finding intelligent life anywhere else in the universe. Because of various realities in terms of the way we seem to revolved and so in some ways. Perhaps we are a product till the middle aged wonderful universe really interesting thoughts which don't have time to talk about now. Let's go on to the second bit about the about way functions. And i think you know just going to the point that i think misty talks about wave functions and things about in the context of dark matter and dark energy. And it's true that well let's take dark matter. I we believe it. Some kind of subatomic particle all the subtopic particles we know about existed this quantum world where it's a combination of a particle or wave or wave very strange notion which means everything has it'll wave function which gives it this probability that it can be in different places at the same time it seems very likely that whatever it is dark matter will behave the same way so we might have Way functions still possible. I think that data could need other dimensions in which to exist and that opens a whole other can of worms but yeah we might have wave functions that cross dimensions. That will be an extraordinary thing. Dark energy the same if it turns out that dark energy is carried by subatomic particle in the same way as we think. Gravity is even though we haven't got quantum theory of gravity that that would have a way function but that's straying into territory. That i really know nothing about it. All would like to read up on it. But i'm not surprised misty that you've not bill to find anything written about this because these are quite a isotopic concept but good thinking. It's very interesting stuff. And the more time goes on the more we learn especially when we discover what dark matter is. I think that will be a big turning. Point in our understanding of some of these really date realities. What a place to the podcast. In these biggest questions that law possibly ask yes. She brings up one very good point. There are probably lots of things at their yet to be discovered things. We have no way of detecting absolutely definitely yes to that And and we're starting to say that in my lifetime. How much of they discovered that we didn't know existed back in the sixties and there will be more it will definitely be and we will. We will certainly becaming area to the ground in regard to that. Now one more thing on thank you misty for your question one more thing just before we finish fred. We have a correction that needs to be to be broadcast This one comes from mary jo. Hi my name's mary jo. I'm coming from tucson arizona. I very much enjoy your program. But in the march tenth program you were talking about chemicals from asteroids and even given our accent differences. You murdered owes cyrus rex long. Oh which is a product of the astronomy department at the university of arizona tucson so yea s. Thanks for everything you do thank you mary. Jo thank you for the correction. When we first started talking about it. I did say a cirrus wrecks and i self corrected because fred set at another wino- thought the astute fred watson would be getting this right some putting it on you for it. Look what we were calling it a series but yes thank you very much. Mary jo right very well taken. I actually i should. We should put out a hello to everybody. If we are mispronouncing word please let us know because we very much like to know and especially when we've got such an international audience. And may. I just started coming as well. We've had a fairly united states emphasis on our questions from this episode. But that doesn't mean that we're not listening to other ones and hopefully soon will be able to cover questions from sweden orcas centers more questions from other countries in europe and everywhere else. Were people. Listen to the space. And that's podcast. We're not just focusing on the us audience. We love everybody. So thank you for all your questions. Keep coming indeed. yes thank you. And if you'd like to send his questions do it on a website space nuts. Podcast dot com. You can send it as text question or you can record it. If you've got a device with a microphone through the tab on our on our page and it's as easy as pressing the button and saying hi. I'm fred from sydney. i want to know everything So simple as that but yes. Thank you very much to everyone. Who contributed today even the toughest riley and michael from oregon. Nas to hear from you. Thank you fred. There's always great great to catch up catch again. That sounds good thanks. Andrew look forward to that and all the best. Take care of those mice and chat for those floodwaters. Yes india and for me and thank you for joining us yet again. On another episode of the space nuts podcast. We'll see again real soon. bye bye. Eighties available at apple. Podcasts google podcasts. Spotify radio favorite podcast. You can also stream on demand at god stuff. This is being another quality podcast. Production from thoughts dot com.
188: Planet TOI-257b
"The second guiding journal Chan by Agnes Spence Nets to build good once again and thank you as always for joining winning this on the space nuts. podcast my name is Andrew Dunkley your host and with me is professor Fred Watson. Astronomer at lodge Hullo Fred Red Dusty. Do very very dusty very very windy very very dry very very nasty got in the car. The other the die off to one particular dust storm and went to claim the windscreen. And I I usually hit the washes first and then the warriors and I did it the wrong way round and you should should it. Just wait and then I hit with the water in these big mudslide went down windscreen. Terrible just horrible wolf read or not. I don't know when we'll ever see an end to this We've been in a drought probably two years now and it just gets worse and worse and worse. We've got animals coming into town looking food and water that you just don't say an a kidney die. kangaroos living on the streets in some parts the town. We wouldn't be surprised if soon we start seeing a muse and maybe some camels because they're running out of things to eight and drinks I that they tend to move live to wherever the green grass is and look. There isn't much of that here but It's just a real mess here at the moment. And everyone's struggling it's it's really the depleting the economic movement of the town on the Western plains zoo coping. They will the the other thing. That's sort of hurting is tourism. We're just not getting people coming here. And so the zoos numbers Dan tourism numbers down significantly the summer. And it just all adds up to one big pile of Doodoo. It's not it's not a nice place debate amendment nor would never say about where I leave. I've been here twenty five years and I love it but right. Now it's just like something. Out of an an apocalyptic movie you look at the sky just about every other diets orange. If it's not orange it's it's sort of blue smoke from the fires. Ah We have probably one clear dia wake and that's become normal this summer and adding to that the number of temperatures over forty degrees Celsius Celsius. We've had more this summer than can ever remember and we had like four or five. Maybe six in a row there a few weeks ago with numbers up around on forty six forty seven degrees. It's just horrific. The good news is the climatic model starting to work back in five or one of the big the things that affects the way. The here is the Indian Ocean. Dr Paul which is the surface temperature of the Indian Ocean and for for a while there it was like four four degrees above average which is mainly dry weather and that has just in the last couple of weeks plummeted back to normal which means we may. I started to say normal weather. Conditions Return and that Spain evidence to bit with some specs of Ryan here. But it's so dry yet one on frontal system through and you just get these big wall of dust that hits you like a off just a brick wall. It's it's just impossible to try and describe describe it to people and then you share them the photos and that go on my gosh. How did you get through that you just got to? You've just got to but it's getting into the air conditioning. Getting into houses houses. It's getting into car systems gets into your is your throat. Your nose gets all through your hair. It's just honestly I don't remember any other ye locked the I've seen stones before locust plagues on saying you know Senator Dole out here. This is true country but but this year that I've thrown it all together. Even the locusts are complaining pretty hideous. Yeah well we. We all know why it's happening. Yes we do we do and yet there are still those who deny it. I think the evidence is far beyond reasonable. Now let's let's get onto some more ram it looks into stuff that's not all of this world. Let's say and the focus. Today is on Australia highly. Because we've got three stories about Australian astronomical situations or events round even awards now And one of them is about a planet that Spain discovered. Another is the oldest impact impact crater ever found in that he's in Australia and one of the strongest is to get a major. US award for the first time in about five million years. I think so. We'll look at all of that but we'll start. Start off Fred with T O I two five seven B and this is a weird planet because if there was an ocean big enough it would float exactly just like our own planet. Saturn which would also flows that go Saturn's densities less than that of water and in and it has that in common with Teo. I two five seven billion which is being cold Queensland's planet? So that's why this is an Australian story it is A planet that was first detected by the Thais spacecraft continent what Terrestrial Arrest Royal Something Esther Transit Transiting exoplanet survey satellite gets it right Fred. The transiting exoplanet survey satellite is test and that dot spacecraft does what the capitalist buys craft used to do it looks for dips in the brightness of stars that betray the presence of an orbiting planet. So te'o I and I think that's something like targeted interest. I I think that's what it means is a test to tear. I two five seven B Basically was revealed by the tests spacecraft but the follow up by telescopes in regional Queensland not very far from the city of which is a beautiful place on his on the highlands. They're the darling downs and not very far out of tune but is Is a mountain called while it's a hill really but he's called Mount Kent Mao. How can a for a long long time has had an observatory operated by the University of southern Queensland where I found a little bit to do with that observatory from time to time because I I'm very very happy to have a close connection with the University of southern Queensland in our joint appointment which very proud of so amount is is on a good size and has now state of the art equipment an array of five seventy anti sent to me to watch that? That's kind of thirty something like that Robotic telescopes that that that big telescopes telescopes by these substandard and they part of a project called Minerva Australia's so this is the southern hemisphere version of Minerva midday. The other two is an acronym like what he stands for. Never mind all that. The news is that with the mid nerve. Follow up of T O I two five seven B. it's not just the discovery this is learning about the physical features of Of this planet planet and as the lead author on the paper. That reported all this Dr Brett Allison from university southern Queensland basically he said this is a significant discovery not just for US Q. in Queensland but as an example of cool an unusual planet types I think by like cool that he means interesting rather than Lois. I'm pretty to as an example of what astronomers caused some Saturn's Saturn's moon the planets that are larger than Neptune and smaller than Saturn. And of course there aren't any examples of that within our own solar system It's as Brett says. The Universe is a quirky diverse place with broad classes of planet such as subset Super Super Earths mini Neptune's that we don't have here at home. Warm sub Saturn's Te'o I two five seven be a rare among the currently known planets and that's true actually of of all these slightly all things the super earths when the mini Neptune's these family rare category so that they the two categories of planet that we find in our own solar system which are basically wrong small rocky planets large gus planners they are really only the communist classes of planets that we find out there in space and things that don't quite fit into that whilst they exist are rare and so two I till I two five seventy is one example of one of these rarity so this is a great story is great news the fact that we now know intensity is less than that it will that marks it out as being something pretty interesting but there's more to come I think Andrew because the authors office of this paper suggests that the data shows strong evidence for a second planet in this system to five seven seas. Yes that's right And they hope to confirm that Within this year so we will. You know. We'll hear more about this. I'm I'm sure from University of southern Queensland as I said it's a great Australian story story the The two more comments made by the authors of this paper The the cloud tops of this planet not particularly cool they reach at least thirteen hundred degrees Celsius. Which is certainly more than the tops talks of the earth so yeah probably not habitable place and there's an in joke here as well it may be Queenslander but forget calling it planet Maroon mm-hmm the maroons color of Queensland one of these silly sporting things is maroon is the official sporting color of Queensland? The Sky Blue is the official sporting colored. newsouth Wilde's calling it planet marrone. It can only be officially named as an all bodies in the universe by the International Astronomical Union. Mostly Universe doesn't know about that but This illness L. Knows the International Astronomical Union is the place where things get nate well to be honest. If the Queensland is we're going to give a planet in I'm it wouldn't be marrone. It would be wally or something like that named after. They must. Famous footballers I'm pretty sure. Now there's another twist to this little story Lori is they're not or am I getting mixed up with another story where you get to do well one of the one of my colleagues at US Q.. Present is Johnny Hall of fantastic excellent. Communicator himself file. From here on the radio is mother is one of our funds. Hey jaunty try and she. She lives she lives on the sky in western Scotland which is an absolutely enchanting place especially when it's not raining in west of Scotland is traditionally a wet part of the world but skies lovely and so To be only I think you would be well advised. I Andrew to be envious of Joan. Tease Mobile skied. If she's getting I'm envious with every day we are quite the the opposite at the time. Well that's wonderful all right so maybe mortal earned from the Minerva program in in Queensland. This is space nuts with and and Fred Watson Bass Matz now afraid to say that our numbers on youtube rising rapidly and I can so. We're not we're not at a thousand yet but I would envisage envisaged by next week we probably will tip the scale But we're we're moving up rapidly. So if you'd like to follow us and subscribe subscribe on Youtube Channel. You can do side by just doing a search for space and that's on Youtube. I think you'll find really all terrible sci-fi movie namespace nuts too if you youtube dot com slash c slash space nuts. You'll find us and subscribe and you can listen to everything everything everything they the movie including Not The bonus material available via Patriot. We'll talk about that later but die Youtube Youtube where we ever ever more encroaching on the on the on the one thousand which is fantastic. Now keeping the Australian flavor flavor of this week's podcast going Fred. There's a place called Yarrow bubba. It's an impact site in Western Australia. Right yeah and I now think it's the oldest impact site on earth which is rather fascinating. That's right an advance you. It's the dating that has been done on this on this in pint-size and by the main dating of the rocks now dating people has has a a S- really staggering precision really impressed with the results that are coming from this So Yoruba. It's in Western Australia. Dryly A- Pretty well central in the state of Western Australia. I don't know I would guess several probably eight to nine hundred kilometers racists from Perth. Probably not that far actually from the Murchison Station where the square kilometer array is being built so in that neck of the woods and of course that is extremely stable landscape geologically. It is quite ancient skype events right so for those who are on away that my live beyond our shores Western Australia probably takes up around one third of the continental continental mass of strider. A huge state mess yet and and a lot of it is a you know really stable ancient paces of US crust we find for example in further north. And wh why are we talking about now. We find rocks that probably bad. The evidence of the very first life that formed on earth. These are these microbial. Matt Scott's dramatic lights but that's not what we're talking about what we're talking about is a place where An asteroid probably moderately sized asteroid. I think talking about you know Several tens of kilometers here this thing hit the earth. It produced a seventy kilometer diameter crater on earth but The evidence of that crater now is kind of buried if I can put it that way. That's partly because the earth okay. So very dynamic planet we've got whether erosion and so- structures like impact craters on the moon whether many craters much older than this the the impact craters on earth eroded. Down by whether processes and actually almost of the service that dissipate because of plate tectonics they The the rox which by them of discipline of they the nearest continental plates. A as I said though. This is a very ancient rock here in Western Australia. And and the way you tell that there is an impact crater there is basically by studying the geology You can tell the slight gravitational anomalies Molise. And you know you can look for the kind of crystals that get produced by high-temperature impacts Around on the boundary of the of what would have been the crater before it was eroded away so the evidence that there was an impact. Here is very strong. But what's new and the reason why you and annoying speaking about this story now. Is the dating of this crater. And that is basically a result stories research that has come from studies of the crystals that are within the rocks that were impacted by whatever it is the hit them. things like zircon crystals which can be basically can be used as as as as clock to work out when an impact or when a shock pass through them and these crystals have allowed the dating eighteen of the Arab bubba crater to within an accuracy. I did look they selfishly in the original paper in front of me but I think it's five. The accuracy is five million years now. That sounds like a lot But the day is two point two two nine billion years ago ago. Wow so you looking. At an uncertainty of the five in the last number of that two point two two nine billion years With very high precision. Why is that you know? Why is it a record breaker? Because the the the What used to be the earliest known asteroid strike which is in South Africa actually That was actually two hundred million years later than this So So you know roundabout to two billion years ago so that pushes back. They the record for the earliest known impact structure on earth. Back to two point two nine two point two two nine billion years which is roundabout half. The age of the Earth is four point six. What with breath Halloween? Like two point two well dot swear gets even more interesting because the earth is gone through a number knbr periods. I think they're thought to be about five of them. When it was basically a snowball it was covered in ice? The atmospherics were was such that they all watch on the surface with frozen and the planet was basically a Sometimes called snowball us because of that as I just said but that that I think it was the the well. One of those icy periods came to an end and roundabout to point two nine billion years ago. So the blow. The the office of this paper are drawing and I think that based I think the principal author is based at NASA Johnson Johnson Space Center in Houston. So the drawing is that perhaps assist impact lofted enough water vapor into the atmosphere and maybe carbon dioxide as well to change the climate climate and in other words to bring the icy period to an end. These weird of mass glaciation so There are people who are saying that it's too long ago about but it does look as the SA- reasonably interesting at least explanation for that that That perhaps use the whatever clouded there at that time was re basically the the thing that caused the switch climate. Wow side Some are saying that synapse salutes saying that's a partial reason some saying Nah somebody else did it. Well yeah that's right There's Some Um yes some Scientists Are Actually fairly skeptical about that. the basically. The there is some you know the there is some criticism of the modeling being a SCAB. Okay speculative one of the criticisms is that if you throw up a lot of Water Vapor our carbon dioxide in the atmosphere The climatic effect doesn't last for long And so you is not enough to end this global glaciation phenomenon. The question is that's a question that we don't have have an answer to but I think all the people who are critical still think is quite neat. Research especially the dating acting of Christ was such high precision. Yes indeed and unfortunately it's a very isolated place in very hard to get to. I would imagine we'll food even if it's easy to get to. It's a heck of a long trip. It's so if you want to go and look at it. I think photographs it probably the best way to go it. Just it just looks like the typical arid interior of strategy really looks like. He's looking at the mount. Yeah actually sleep. Well yes I suppose. That's true certainly very brown in Dade a kite so we learn more as time goes on. These studies are ongoing one of the things we talk about. Occasionally we can revisit them when more information comes to lot. This is space nuts with Professor Fred Watson and Andrew Dunkley of course respect space nuts now once again. Reminding warning you that you can support the space nuts podcasts by becoming a patron and you can do that at Patrie on website Patriot dot com slash. Spice Nuts You can and spend thirty dollars a month five ten whatever you like. Some people have chosen to spend more and that is wonderful thank you it is not mandatory but as a patron I turn. We are offering bonus material every week which is building up rather nicely. We're also offering you an early access edition of spice nuts commercial free. So that is what's on offer for patrons patriotic dot com slash vice nuts. If you'd like to check it out if there's not for you that's fine but the Option is the now we normally answer some questions at this time but this week we want to talk about a rather a Wonderful Award that is being given to an Australian astronomer now. This is the first time in many many years that such a an award is being offer to an Australian. It's the James Craig Watson Award nothing to do with me. It was named after an American Canadian astronomer and has been presented every two years since eighteen. Eighty seven by I think it's the TASHA Yes the National Academy of Science in the USA. So the in James Craig Watson Medal as something that recognizes scientists are very high distinction as I said. US National Academy assigns. It hasn't ever been presented to an Australian. An in fact he hasn't ever been presented to somebody in the Southern Hemisphere. So this is the first time it's gone to Somebody in our country and it's recipient is very very worthy of the honor. A the recipient is professor. Lisa Q Lee Who is a job title. Ix quite quite extensive takes yeah well to read professor and Australian Research Council laureate fat low trillion National University. That's in camera of coast. But she's also director of something called the Australian Research Council central excellence in all sky astrophysics in three dimensions. It's it's usually known as astro three. I've fabric to do with us through three on and off over the years that it has existed but Lisa directed. That's it and what this is all about. So All Sky Astro physics and three coast is basically looking at the whole sky. But with the additional dimension mention of distance in the and that doesn't just mean the distances to objects it means galaxies as well so what she's done and and Lisa has a whole track record of awards and fellowships but she is an established world leader in the theoretical modeling an observation of star forming active galaxies. Her seminal contributions. And I'm reading now from the Press release include understanding the gas physics in such galaxies understanding galaxies containing actively creating supermassive black holes roles that means black holes feeding on the stuff around them as you know of course Andrew and tracing the Star Formation Oxygen History of galaxies over the past twelve billion. So it's a big picture studies. And of course that feeds directly into our understanding of the way the universe has evolved away the way our our own Our own galaxy has evolved. So she's done a lot in modeling. Hal these things take place the theoretical modeling as as I mentioned a minute ago. That's basically what she's done and those models fit extraordinarily well to what we observe in the universe. So it's great stuff and actually you know almost singlehandedly. In some way she's she's transformed the the field One of the other leases accolades Is that. She was one of the strong magazine's top ten rising stars house in two thousand nine. She appeared on national documentaries for the discovery. Channel the National Geographic Channel. So this is a person who's WHO's trajectory trajectory has been very steeply upwards and really not surprised that she has received this medal but is delightful that she becomes the first first person in our hemisphere to get it especially because one of her passions of course is women in stem and similar educational activities bringing the kind of signs that we do to as broad and as diverse a a a a an audience as possible and to encourage people from all backgrounds all ranges of diversity to come come in and become scientists themselves. So she's really an inspiring figure in Australian astronomy. Now question without notice. It's the James Craig Watson aboard would do you know much about James Craig Watson. Only that he has a name very similar to mine. Iverson I have a son Cole. James Watson yes I do I should have checked tipple not because I don't actually know what James Craig Watson did he has mentioned is American Canadian astronomer to a basically to set up a bequest of an award need to be fairly well heeled field. Because I this is an award that comes with a couple of dollars attached to it. Yeah sitting dolls fifty and and it still Lazaro straddling from US dollars. But I wondered way. He amassed his fortune and so we'll try to check up on their under. Yeah but yeah a obviously a very successful man in his time and we're talking like middle of the eighteen. Hundreds basically when he was around doing his thing and highly successful successful. So what great success for her. So I've now followed up on your question. That's already trickled petty. Well let me because the press release actually has a note about the James Craig Watson Medal which is very nice and The James Craig Watson Medal is presented every two years for outstanding contributions to the science astronomy and carries with it a gold plated bronze medal a twenty twenty five thousand dollar prize. Never mind this this seven dollars. Fifty Andrew and fifty thousand dollars just to pull the recipients research. The Watson Medal was established by an ASS member on prolific Canadian American astronomer. James Craig Watson Watson is credited with discovering twenty two asteroids in his lifetime he published many articles and wrote a popular treatise on comets eighteen sixty one and theoretically in theoretical astronomy in eighteen. Sixty eight is a notable a notable person and what a great name. I do like that. Stop Surname. He's got it funny that that is wonderful news Get back to questions next week. We just thought we needed to recognize such a great achievement from someone who's obviously very very passionate luck you for a bit Has has really made some inroads into some of those. The area says massive areas of astronomy. That we so often talk about. So that's real and that rep is up for another. Ah I will remind people however that you can visit the space nuts shop at a website bites dot com slash space nuts and pick yourself a shirt or maybe a book. There's a couple of nights books there by one professor Fred Watson and some other jerker but have a look can Golf there isn't a five don't flight was one experimental books. I wrote this tongue in cheek. Sports psychology okay. Just for fun and it took me about an hour and a half to brought it. It's based on my gathering of knowledge through stories have done on sports psychology and a lot of books read on sports psychology particularly focusing on golf and had a hand delus- your mud playing the game And I thought well this has been done before but all right hey. Rather tongue in cheek somewhat bawdy version of sports psychology. Adji broken. Really take down to the bottom of the barrel and and were fifty pages. But it's I'm golfers who basically lose their tempers too. Sadly as the also didn't work for me but it'll work for somebody it's just fun and it was an experiment to say how ago publishing enable can Just wanted to do that and save. The process was with pursuing editor. Right and the cover is my five on sitting at the bottom of a like Russia which is what the planet Sassoon Awesome wouldn't do planet. Te'o I two five seven one. Yes thank you fred has always. It's been a great pleasure and lots of yeah no no worries under. We'll speak again soon. We willing to catch next week and for me Andrew Dunkley. Thanks again. If you're a patron we've got some bonus material coming up for you very soon on patriotic and otherwise. We'll catch up with you next week on another edition of space nuts to this. podcast becomes available at Apple. podcasts Google Kost spotify radio all your favorite podcast you can also also streaming on demand at this is another quality podcast production from thoughts dot com.
The Mars Rush of 2020 Is On
"In fifteen seconds guidance been journal and nine technician sequenced. Spence. Nets. Three To. One space. Bill. Good. Hello. Once again, thank you for joining us on the space nuts podcast episode two, one three, my name is Andrew Dunkley. You'll host joining me as always is astronomer at Lodge Fred Watson. Hello Fred Millennia Andrew how're you doing? I am well, you have set a cat amongst the pigeons, my friend or more to the point a rooster amongst the hen house given that our good friend, Gregory Peck made a an impromptu appearance on the show last week and people are loving him. He's looking around outside. So the the might be more of Gregory. Today. I don't know. Extending from where I sit I can tell you some almost needs. We almost earplugs when he really gets worked up. Hopefully. Their demands for photographic evidence. Well I've talked to his agent and she's GonNa tell I think people are to talk to your people will. Provide. Until of t shirts I, know I've heard that. Someone actually brought that up as. It could become the new logo. Vice Rooster. He's. I understand he's a very dark I have to say very handsome rooster so he'll do long. pays on t shirts. I'm sure I'm count white. or I will. If we do manage to do some kind of graphic Dale, we will certainly posted that photo on the space nuts podcast grape on facebook for those who have requested such I understand you have a new addition to the family as well. Yes. We suddenly as you know, we sell, they lost a beloved cat man do. But there is a A. Fairly, large ish after six year old kitchen that now frolics around the place whose name is Moscow. It's it's just part of the pasture deal. Because money's business. Of course, was travel leisure all destinations that she's take a groups to and things like that. We were in Moscow last year in fact but anyway must is is is not certainly not a man do but he does have a character resume is I'm sure. Sure. Yes. He makes any impromptu appearances He will be much to welcome you. Fastest thanks to the moment. Does a Lotta sleeping yet? That Y LAS TEENAGE BEHAVIOR Okay. On today's edition of Spice Nuts, we're going to discuss the launch of necessary a mission to Mars. Now it's due to leave Thursday us time, which will be past tense by the time this particular podcast is. Your take and with a permitting but we do WanNa talk about that upcoming mission. And we want to talk about the RIF project and this is a project where Fred. my have a bit of an inkling as to what what goes on because he was the project scientist. So. One would hope but stranger things have happened Politics is a good example anyway we we will look at the right project I think It's it's focusing on movement of stars if I'm not incorrect, which is not uncommon anyway and audience questions Sir from in Australia and petty in Sydney about the International Space Station Space Junk in creating a magnetic field to protect astronauts from radiation. All sorts of things a guy to be discussed to die on the spice nuts podcast. Now Fred, let us begin with this twenty twenty perseverance mission to mas which by the time this podcast is released will hopefully have begun. We hope. So that's the I. So the the. As you know we've talked about this before under coast there's a window for lunch. That window as a started about A. Couple of weeks ago an extends into August. The United Emirates and the Chinese have already taken advantage of this window which gets you to. With minimum energy obits that's the whole point of it So the Perseverance rover is the last of the trio we we have a launch window begins actually. On Thursday, the thirtieth of July, and as far as I know. NASA. Is still go loan should that earliest opportunity? It's four fifty am Pacific daylight time on the thirtieth of July that makes it if I did my calculation correctly. So the way to clock in the evening here in eastern Australia. So we hope all will be well. As things stand now where one day twelve hours, thirty, three minutes and thirty thirty seconds into the countdown. Of the countdown it's counting down and we hope to bring good news in the next edition of space nuts. But I thought it would be worthwhile. Just reminding Ola stained listeners. What this is about the space craft is a rover of. I guess a similar design to curiosity. Obviously, these things evolved from one style to another but. Certainly true that when you look so severe and owes a lot to the the design of curiosity six wheels weighs approximately. Tom. A. Powered by the traditional. G. Radio, isotope, thermoelectric generators, a little boxes of plutonium. They sit on the back of the of the spacecraft, and then there's the mast with the cameras on top. There's a whole lot of upper artists on the robotic arm, which is at the front of the of the vehicle and. Uniquely. Spoken about before. Helicopter which is power. And solar panel. The helicopter called Ingenuity helicopter weighs about two kilograms. It's not you know it's not a flimsy thing. This is fairly solid device. One little factoid that we didn't discuss when we talked about ingenuity the helicopter a little while ago is that it's for carbon fiber blades will spin two, thousand, four, hundred pm not said huge speed. And I guess that's necessary in order to bite into mazdas rarefied atmosphere. Less than what into the atmosphere pressure that we have here on earth. and from what I've read about the ingenuity is that it's going to pave the way for future exploration of Mars. It could well be the the the next phase of of interplanetary exploration because helicopters will be able to go. To places that Rove his cannot and they'll be able to get they faster. Could it could be quite a a menace achievement if they can make it work and that they will I mean yes. We you and I've talked about some of the catastrophic failures of the past in terms of further of certain. missing the mark or hitting too hard and those are the risks you take but. Most, most mission same to do do rather well and Launching a helicopter and another planet I mean, who? Who Thought about it twenty thirty years guy. But now it's it's going to happen. Yang is crossed. It's got to happen. So. Exactly. As you said, the the the the reason for the helicopter certainly in this case, and it may be used for different things later on but it's just a scout out that the terrain ahead of the head of the rover to look for. Places of interest geological interest within the rovers range to look more especially for obstacles if they're over comes over the brow of a Little Hill and then finds that the way ahead is blocked by bowlers. Something of that sort it'd be nice to know about that before you bother to drive up the hill. and. So that's what the engineer to helicopter will be useful. Really looking forward to seeing what kind of. What kind of imagery we get from what sort of performance it has just a final two final points on this of course, the whole point of reference as the idea of looking for signs of past or present life on Mars that's White House. It's drill to try and extract core samples and things of that sort. And and also. The other thing was it was going to tell you probably probably. Due to land roundabout February next year. I'm going to ask you how long this journey will take it. He's a long trip Tamaz. Isn't it? It's quite away. That's right but. Yet all social systems ago at the moment as far as I know everything is on track as it is with the two other spacecraft already on their way to Mars. If. You're going to take the kids to Mas. Make sure you've stopped up on those. In carrying detainment DVD's Orion. ORCA. Why Pat downloads because. They're going to get bored real quick we they. Think will happen many times But. The other thing is the the landing point which you and I've mentioned they've chosen I believe river delta area. Yes. That's right. Jasser Crater is the name of the location and it does go to River Delta A. The the the was at one stage Mosey history, a flowing water over the shallow region within this crater and. A. Thought. The riverdell tres. A very efficient places for the dumping into the terrain of any kind of biological material. Of River, deltas on earth very rich in biological material is carried down by the river. So the hope is that they might the evidence in that region of. Up perhaps past life you never know the might there might be signs of micro of metabolic activity there now but pass life I. Guess He's what what is the focus? One other thing just about perseverance is that? It will gather samples as well. Which? Intended then in future Mars mission to be brought back to Earth for analysis. So it's One of sailing, even more ambitious. And the other thing they doing which sham sorta hasn't really been raised too much in the media although I spotted at the at the Diana had to mention it on the radio is the taking back a rock from ause? Landed on six, hundred, thousand years ago. One of the Martian meteorites in which there are about three hundred known I think yeah. It's being taken back a calibration sample their for their experiments. Fabulous stuff. Imagine meteorite that came from us being taken back there to debris left on the surface. And they'll probably go what are we supposed to do with this? Guy. Lacoste comeback. Oh my gosh. We've got plenty of them. But very exciting, and now with three missions bound from is there'll be a lot to talk about well next year basically when all of this starts to unfold I, imagine yeah. We'll have to change the puck customers nuts andrew rather than just. Bang. Special Mass Not Sedition for. Three months. So it's not. comes. All right we watch with interest in Hopefully, by the time you hear this, that mission will be Nominal and headed mass you're listening to space nuts with Andrew Dunkley and Fred Watson. Now, let's take a little break and find out more about our sponsor express VPN writer number one tech radar. This is the one I use. I've been using it for a couple of years and I love it when I joined expressive AP. Now, that will brand new new to the market, but I read a lot of reviews and did a lot of comparisons. and. It was just something about the business model that I particularly locked couple years down the track honestly can't complain their interface is very easy to use the service is second to none. I've had to contact them a couple of times about. Certain things that I wanted to do and I were brilliant. So you may be wondering why I do need a VPN at all. It's all about privacy. Do. You really want big tech companies, governments and others knowing. What's going on with your online activity? Even if you're having nothing to hide, it just feels downright creepy. 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Nuts once again, just saying hello and thank you to our social media followers whether it's on facebook through the official space nuts facebook page all the spice snouts podcast group at we are on twitter we are on Instagram, we are on Youtube, and if you are interested downloading the podcast via YouTube we're looking to get out monthly download figures to around four thousand and or you can listen on your favorite podcast distributor of it Social media seems to be a place where we gather a lot of followers and particularly with the spice podcast group. It's A. It's a good avenue for you to talk to each other and I noticed it's very, very busy group in Dade Ana occasionally pokemon hidden and have look around and say what everyone's talking about. But whatever platform you listen to us on. Thank you for supporting the space nuts podcast and you can also show that support through patriotic or one of the other platforms where we give you the opportunity to contribute to the show financially through on super cast or cast, and it can be for as little as three dollars a month it's purely voluntary. We're getting more and more people sign up with that option every week. So we thank you for supporting and of course, as a as a m financial contributor. Or as a as a patron you do get a few extra benefits including bonus material which will pop up on whatever platform you follow us on which You finding most enjoyable. We are certainly having fun putting it together now let's Have a bit of arrive with Fred who is wanting to talk about the the the latest information from the radio velocity experiment otherwise known as Rave Fred. You're pretty close to this one indeed. Yeah. I wasn't actually I'm the project scientists that was the role of one of my colleagues in the University of Louisiana in Slovenia, his name is Thomas Vita. My job was to be the project manager. So it's a rave was actually quite a large. Consortium of something like sixty scientists. From twenty patients internationally many of them located in Europe in fact, it was led by. An I suppose technically still as all get to that in a minute is led by. Professor Doctor Matthias Steinmetz who is The head of astrophysics at the KNITS institute roster physics pots down in Germany. So. Toll Match, and myself were the three what you might call managers of this project. But there was also a board, an executive board which will members of then the consulting itself set sixty scientists. So, what is it? It is a project which had sin section back in two, thousand three I remember meeting. On a chilly morning in Cambridge UK where we discussed the possibility of using the United Kingdom Schmidt Telescope. At Siding Spring Observatory here in Australia A. Equipped than with a with a robotic fiber optics machine called Sixty F that stands for sixty green field, the field of view of the telescope. which would allow you to gather. Information on the velocities of stars accurate velocities for stars. and. This proposal was actually. On the back of a spacecraft that was being planned now remember I think it might have been Feng the spacecraft that was being proposed by the German Space Agency. The idea was that the spacecraft would. Would make measurements of the velocities of the stars across the line of sight and we would then from the ground do the equivalent. But along the line of sight, and if you combine those you get what's called a the the. The trivial of the. So. The whole idea of this radio velocity experiment radio the los just velocity of star on the line of sight was to build a database of stars using the Schmidt Telescope. And indeed, it got kicked off it went through all kinds of tribulations, any sally days but he started. We started pilot observations in two thousand and three in two, thousand five. The Rave Project became the only project that the Schmidt telescope was undertaking. So it was undertaking it through throughout the whole year rather than just on selected dates each month. And and the project grew. So. Actually grew in many ways that the initial idea was to gather velocities of stars and it might just out. I've got vested interest in this not boasting about him from any personal point of view but we did great things. There's no doubt when we started. The total gullage. Of the total sum of Stellar Star Radio Velocities was about twenty thousand that been gathered for the previous hundred and fifty years, and within the first year we had more than doubled that we've gone to forty or fifty, thousand Contra member the number but it be quite obvious that this was a very effective way of improving. Knowledge of the velocities, the motions of Stars in the Suns neighborhood a galaxy, and that's why the project then kind of took off. and. Basically, we observe for a roundabout ten years. It was the final observations were made by somebody called Fred what's the I think it was the fourth of April two, thousand, thirteen, it was in the wake of the. The one belong fire that nearly took out the observatory I. Did some think it four nights observations in April of that year just to prove that it wasn't the fire that brought the project to an end. In fact, we essentially run out of funding however. In not ten years, we measured five hundred and thousand, nine, thousand, three, hundred, eighty, seven spectra that means the data points for four, hundred, fifty, one, thousand, seven, hundred, and ninety three stars you go. The final number so The observation stopped in two thousand thirteen. Seven years. Later, what is happening is the final. Basically, the final catalogue of all these data has been released pack was released lust actually. Ended last big nose last week twenty seventh of July. Twenty, seven, th of July twenty twenty. That was when we released what was what's called six the sixth data release of the Rafe Catalog. and. It's the sort of final product. This is the end product of what the survey has been all about shut up from it. So you can ask you a question but what not start again am I just give you some insight into what has been discovered from that Andrew? Well. That's that was my question because you you've done all this work I've is such a long period of time and I'm sure that you've been. Crunch the daughter and and come up with with some revelations and I'm just looking at. Some of the information has been released and. Talking about things like how Fast Sti- has to be moving to escape gravitational pull. I'm quite intrigued by the results confirming the dock Meta. dominates the massive at Galaxy. I mean, it's it's something. We don't know much about if you've been able to confirm that it is a dominant force in the universe. Yeah that's right and certainly narrow galaxy. So what you're doing is you're using the speeds of stars to essentially reveal something about the gravitational field in which that moving. That's. That's basically how. Is One of the ways that you can tell what sort of gravitational pull styles of failing. And sure enough we get the same result that most of the massive all galaxy is in is in dot matter. That other result you mentioned it plays into the same idea in fact because. The idea of determining the minimum speed needed for star to escape the gravitational pull of the milky. Way. Is actually one of the first papers that was produced from right back in about two thousand and four fairly result. What's called the escape velocity of the galaxy that gives you a a mass of the galaxy. But of course, that mass includes not just the as you can see, but also the matter. And in more detail rave shown. The, the the disc of our Milky Way? And is wobbling lightly because of the satellite galaxies light with to Jelinek clouds, the way they are interacting with our galaxy. So the has wobbles in it. And we've also found streams of stars which are probably the remnants of. Dwarf galaxies the have been pulled apart and. The first one that was found. Probably back in about two thousand, six thereabouts with something called the Aquarius Stream it was the dawning of the stream of Aquarius that was the title of the paper. I think. So th that's Dwarf Galaxy in ripped apart they have merged with the Milky Way, but we still see their evidence in the movement of the stars. So it was a pretty neat project I have to say and. Let me say the I am very honored to have played a party. My role was essentially supervising only observations is a team of half a dozen of us who did they observing I was managing not group has the stronger in charge of the observatory. But also as the is the right project scientists project manager, he spent a lot of time wearing about budgets and where money was coming from spent a Lotta. Time. Worrying about the fact that the fibers fiberoptic machine kept breaking and also have stuff is why Andrew I've got virtually. Rave. Put Big learned my shoulders but. It was worth every. Every lost terabytes because well over hundred. top-class scientific articles have come from the life project that that's just a brilliant output. So It's kind of R.I.P rate because the six data release really represents the end of the project and the fact that. Those data are public. Any of our listeners could go and access them. You've got to go find them. At the. Institute for astro-physics in on their website, but it's pretty easy to do if you just Google rave and it will take straight there off to some party or the of sand. We're not supposed Fred with all the information you've collided and released. It may will pave the way for future studies and and We may through other avenues learn a heck of a lot more about stas and and maybe even doc matter. In fact, goose studies already underway Andrew Yooglie. Yes. So a similar survey, but in a little bit more detail because it's a big telescope that's going on with the anglo-australian telescope three point nine meter telescope siding spring that's called gala. Gala is galactic archaeology with Hermes Hermes. is another of these fiber optics, factory us, but working in a different way but the one thing that really has I think. Sort of Sean the way ahead and actually has has allowed rave data to be used in a completely new way. That is the guy at spacecraft guy is a an ISA spacecraft which is measuring the positions of stars with microbes second accuracy. And you can combine the data coming from that with the rave data to get really extraordinary detail. The way things are operating in our galaxy, not just the movement of Stars in the Galaxy, but they chemistry the temperatures, surface gravities. All of that stuff comes from this this combined a set of of day. So it's really a really powerful to. and. And you also Mesopotamia it looked tried to find some of the very, very first stars I mean that must have been. Interesting and difficult I imagine it is exciting stuff as well. So what you're looking for a stars that have got a very low metal content in their atmospheres. Principally I am. The lower the amount of iron there is in the atmosphere of a star. The earlier eight must have been born in the history of the universe because I n is enriched gradually throughout the history of the universe. So rave had the potential to to to find those and fact I think a couple of times. Stars found with rape where record holders for the earliest known star that's a moveable feast is like the most distant known object. It's something that. Keeps changing as new technology comes along. But yes, they pointed to bury alley styles clues about the state police have stopped. and. The chemical evolution in the Milky Way as the press release says. Indeed. Fantastic well, well done fred. De. Fantastic. Shit. Yes, and it's it's good that you have arrive about rive. Play around trumpet occasionally, and that's that's what you do I. Mean You you. You work in this arena and I think people would be really came to to hear about some of the the direct influences in hands on work you've done so. Fantastic. Effort. You always being true. The spice nuts podcast with Andrew and professor Fred Watson. Space Nuts as always I would encourage you to visit our. Way You can go shopping we have a space in that shop we have space and that's bookshop and you can record your audio questions through the Ama tab on the spice nuts podcast dot com website. It's very easy url you'll notice it'll change when you loaded that. that. It's it's it's an illusion space nuts podcasts, dot com. Way You'll find our official spice nuts, web page and from they can have a look around all episodes and just If you do want to ask an Nordia question, all you need is a device with the microphone plugged in and you can most certainly. Send in audio questions but we'll still take them in text for more than happy to do that if you. Don't have the capacity to record a bit embarrassed, your voice or you just don't want to. Terezin speaking of audio questions for let's get stuck into some of these. We've got one from Martin who is in Australia Andrew Elfriede. This is Martin from Austria. Question about the I assess so I can absorb it with the naked eye. But in various quite a bit Some question is, why does it vary that much is because of adjustments the Isis has to do. If. So how do they do that and? What other things they have to bury mind do they have to look at the space junk or satelites or the stuff? Yeah we'll be good if you could explain that and Yep been a fan of your show for two years killed the good work. Greets must ya but Thank you. Great to hear from you and he's awesome. Interesting questions I suppose Fred. It's something we have touched on before because in the not too distant past they did have to actually move the s because of a potential collision with spice junk, which is something Martin asked about. But I suppose, the first part of the question was about the variation in the observe ability of the Isis, which you can see with the naked eye but sometimes, it's more difficult than others. Why would that be? Yes. So the Yes exactly it's the brightness that's burying. And actually part of what is the reason for that is exactly what Martin says. The orbital adjustment so The International Space Station it's nominal altitude is about four hundred kilometers, but it can't just stay at that height. If you don't do anything because it's such a huge object with a gigantic solar panels. and. Acreage of real estate as well. It actually interacts with the very tenuous atmosphere. There is even at that time. So if you don't do anything it just gradually. Reduces in altitude and so what happens is exactly as mountain suggests, there are orbital adjustments to the mission control is to essentially the rockets station keeping rockets they call basically these are the thrusters that actually boost the International Space Station to a higher orbit. On if I remember rightly on the heavens above website, I don't know whether it's still there but it certainly used to be heavens hyphen above dot com think the URL. that. A chart of the altitude of the International Space Station over time, and it's a kind of Sawtooth. Graph. Because the you know the thing gradually comes downwards and then they boosted always upwards slightly. To, tonight, the the sole tooth shape I'm now that. That probably changing altitude by fifty kilometers or something like dot com, the exact details, but that's enough to. Because of the geometry of the way, we see the fact that we are seeing the space station illuminated by sunlight. And you know that's that that ten percent or twenty percent or whatever it is. Changing. Altitude is enough to change the brightness of the space station that we see but I think the biggest. Cause variability is just. The, the attitude that the space station has as it transits across your field of view because it is shining by reflection and you can imagine these enormous solar panels They have the not what you call specula- reflections acting like mirrors basically just scattering scattering the light. But depending on the exact orientation of the spacecraft as it flies overhead you're going to see some difference in the amount of light is reflecting. So it is quite variable exactly as Martin says. It's always pretty bright to suddenly the brightest of all the artificial satellites around the earth and. I have to tell you I. Always get a Buzzword I. See going fast such A. Such a motive thing that you know that four hundred kilometers up there. There's an international crew of of of experts actually doing working spikes. Fantastic thing. Oh it is. Yeah and four hundred kilometers isn't really that fireman you and I are almost that firepower of this, right? Yeah. So when you think about it, that's that's not a great distance in the scheme of things. So all from up there the view on my gosh. I would love to or would just love to go up they adjust to take a look at us from from that vantage point I think. I'd I'd I'd even think fighters do justice I think the The naked eye, the human eye view from the International Space Station. Especially, if you're outside would be a just mind blowing I, I envy. Those people are now that worked hard to get there and you know it's all business but I I think that get sick of it do you. They probably quite enjoy the job. Yes is worried. Now he also mentioned spice junk and space junkies a an ongoing problem because there's just more and more of it turning up there and with so many satellite launches happening. At the present time, this is the capacity more space Junkin. Collisions Rob are always a affected that we need to be aware of. Exactly. That's right. So Yes As Martin said, do they have to look out space junk's specs junk? They do that's all done through mission control the the the thing you know things. NORAD radio radar. These are the facilities that actually allow us to track. Daybreak down to about one hundred millimeters across. In orbit and as as you said at the beginning there under the there are occasions probably two or three times a year when the over to the space station has to be adjusted slightly because there's a danger that it might come within. Range of some piece of space junk this. In a similar orbit of course, the smallest stuff stuff that's not able to be tracked. That's something you can't really guard against. That's why. The space station itself, his family solid just one final thing if if the if the space station. Is under threat from a piece of space daybreak they would adjust the OB to try and avoid it but the results so. I I know the astronauts have congregated in the in the it's escape modules just to be safe if An encounter like that. And you can never be too careful in space. As as quoted by. The character in the Moshen spice does not cooperate, right? Give. The very hostile environment as well. Martin if you questions very enlightening and glad we could talk about some of those things. Let's move on to our next question from petty in. Sydney. And Andrew. Patty from Sydney. Sorry Andrew Fridge Mike. Question. Along with. Molten later Bolton medals. Using. Around. With. That they white to create a magnetic field to protect textiles. It's possible be concerned. About the country recently. On, how to do that? Different metal was a really lower. Point. Sure if that's possible. If. It could be strong enough. Actinic failed to protect the astronauts. Greg Lincoln. By this. Thank you Patty knows to hear from you in person yes. He's asked a Roofer and he he I think was the one that asked us about roof tiling mas pretending astronaut. Right. So now the question is, can we create magnetic failed to predict astronauts in space using molten metals? Do thinking because he so it was about how we you know how we create an environment that will protect astronauts particularly. A on Mars but also heading to Mas and I haven't actually heard of this idea of using. Fluid metals to create the magnetic field. That's clearly how the US magnetic field is created by the sloshing around of. Of Molten Iron. In the CAU-. I think. In practice, it is going to be down to. Using much more conventional shielding. To protect astronauts in space. Lettuce. Lead is a pretty good way of stopping. The radiation from the sun penetrating inside the spacecraft to to to astronauts but it's pretty lettuce pretty unforgiving as well. Just let experienced. Very heavy getting it up there would be a nightmare. So I know that some of the designs that are being suggested actually use water as as the shielding. So you know maybe you you you've got a water tanker in over. Seventy spacecraft up there, and then you fill up the tanks. To provide the shielding. I haven't followed that in detail. and. Patty suggestions interesting if you've got a low melting point battle. Creek capable of generating and by. That would be interesting way to do it, but I'm I'm really been following this so. I shouldn't comment without actually looking at what results people are suggesting that great thoughts. Thank you. I will. I will check up on that Patty. Yeah. What about Mercury would that work? No I don't think so. I. Don't think mercury you would work I. Think. While it doesn't necessarily have to be a ferrous metal I think he's going to have certain characteristics Luke I'm guessing year Andrew and making this. Long. But I will check up on because he's such an interesting an interesting thought. It is. How do they protect the astronauts on the I s to bring you today's two questions together. What what what protections there from radiation. Will. They don't really need it because within the the the Mike. Bubble that the self provide. The red. Once you get outside of that and do a bit of a long hold trip. The starting on yourself expires? What about going to the moon they exposed in that trip? Yes. They are and what sort of help to not regard. With the astronauts. They pull astronauts of course they were. There only in environment for week of so. Out of earth. Orbit. An all the basically, the risks were thought to be tractable for relatively short periods of exposure like that. Enough but I think the problem is. When you are talking about a mass flight, it's at least six months. And that's a very different kettle of fish from six to seven days. In the full radio radiation field of the south. I'm starting to think the solution lies in the alien conspirists who ran the heads I died I. think that might be the guy. Will have not. Rama. Had all the time Ondrej. Just, to make sure. All right Patty thanks for the question you've you've got to Fred. He might have to do some homework to come up with something on that yet is is really clever thinking wrought outside the box. So good on your mind good to hear from you too Fred I think that's just about it. For another week I certainly encourage people to to send the questions in Vira website that always good to hear from you whether it's in written form or verbal I. Please do that You can record by the AMA TAB which I mentioned earlier at spice nuts podcast dot com. Thanks as always Fred another episode in the can as they say in the industry. That's right to know. How to Gregory silent today I think is across the paddock some west. We'll see what happens next time under thanks Raymond. Now a great pleasure thanks Fred Fred Watson an astronomer at large out of the team he on space not send. Thank you if your company looking forward to catching up with you next time. To this. Available Apple podcast Google podcasts spotify. Favorite podcast Playa you can also straighten on demand at God stuff. This is now the quality podcast production from thoughts dot com.
177: Mars Mole Misses Mark
"Today's show is brought to you by express. VPN protect your online activity today. And find out how you can get three months free at trikes. VPN DOT com slash space. That's try express. VPN DOT com slash space for three months free with a one e package visit try express. VPN DOT com slash spice to learn more fifteen seconds guided journal and ignition sequence. Space Nuts. Three two partners space as report. It feels oh good and hello once again. Thank you for joining us on this edition of space. Nuts the podcast episode one hundred and seventy seven. Even my name is Andrew Dunkley. I'm your host and with me as always is astronomer at large professor Fred Watson Fred three the host where the most what most space between my ears. I think would probably be appropriate today. Fred we've gotTA look to discuss. Thus we're going to talk about the mall stuck in a hall on Mas we got to look at A new image that confirms a Dwarf Planet and this one might the smallest one yet and a few questions today one about white hulls one about looking through a telescope. It's actually an interesting question. And we'll double up with another question about the mass at saw the universe could that be doing and an interesting fellow who spent some time down on at Mawson station in Antarctica asking about gravitational waves but he also sent us some amazing votes from Dan. They're all my gosh. Hopefully he's put them on the space nuts fake facebook podcast group space. Yeah that's IT and on and share them with everyone because I asked stunning stunning pictures bivalve. Let's get back to the mall in the hall read. This is a little bit of an issue with with the insight. Mars Lander one thing I've noticed is it's doing what it's supposed to do entirely that's tries. Part of it is not doing entirely what he's supposed to do so recall. The insight is a spacecraft sitting. If I'm a variety they somebody the malls it is designed to pro mazdas interior. So it's not really looking at the surface particularly. It's not looking looking for signs of pus. Life or anything like that. That will be the Providence of mass twenty twenty which will be launched next year surprising given the name inside though who is Space Craft that is equipped with him. So basically it's just sits on the surface doesn't wheels it's a Atlanta Landa based actually on Phoenix Lander that investigated the Martian Arctic. Back in two thousand eight if I remember rightly them so it's inside is Atlanta which is equipped with two principal instruments. One is a very accurate very sensitive seismometers. So it's listening listening from earthquakes and that side of things have been very successful than you and I've actually spoken about that not in the not too distant past the the fact that something like I think it's well over one hundred quakes have been have been registered of which I think only a percentage are genuine mouse quakes Some of the macos by the wind and things like that he hundred fifty events detected today. Twenty the three of which have been confirmed as Mars quakes and under the most quakes are of great interest because it nationalized workout. What he's come from? But the other inside of Insights armory of instruments so the other facets of that is a device which rejoices. This is in the name of HP three now hp three is an acronym. It's not easy to pronounce but he rush Creek. Three many stands for the heat flow and physical properties package. And that's where the three comes from physical. I thought it was hard to put in hull quite so quite so you should be on the radio and during that you should be on. Should we similar uh-huh probably. Is that all the time somewhere else. Yes soon anyway. I won't make any suggestions as to where he might be but they he floated physical properties. Package it was actually It's from the German Aerospace Center. So it's a because inside is a multinational facet so. HP Three is the one that is in the news and that is because As its name implies heat flow and Physical Properties Package Doc id the main one of the main functions of this device. HP three is to measure the heat coming from mazdas interior. How now and in order to do that you you don't want to just dump them mature on the surface because the surface is affected by radiation from the Sun and by you know look essentially local environmental effects so the idea with insight was that the heat pro big south the HP three was equipped with is equipped towards the thing that is called the mole? The mole is essentially a device. Nice that digs each way into the soil and And goes down actually up to five meters. Was the original plan. to get these hate prob- well under the surface of Mars so what you're failing is defective principally you measuring effective heat coming help from the interior you can compensate for for what comes down from the surface. You don't have to go down far into the earth to feel the heat. No No. That's right now I've been down one of the mines at West. He went down some way. Like three hundred and seventy maters and it was like fifty degrees down there. Yes this stinking off. Third of a kilometer. That's right you you know. Until you're detecting Kinda tend to of Degrees of increased heat eight. Almas this sensitive the Mama says it is basically can measure very much more minute differences in temperature so yes it is able to detect the heat coming from mazdas interior or would be it could be put in the right place because this mold device which is supposed to take it down to five meters. It's kind of self hammering thing It it it probably masses that is banged against the the end then. Retracts within the mall is cylindrical device. Kind of top thing. It's like a baby piledriver. But it's after they started digging it down into the surface of several months ago now shortly it got stock Tuck. It went down about thirty centimeters which is not five macy's and then stopped and so the question that rose was stopping it and one possibility was a rock and another one which seems to be the mullahs likely the more likely Basically the cause of this problem will likely calls is that The the mall itself has lost friction with the dust around it so it seems to need banks way down. Tom Seems to need a certain amount of friction between the outside of the mall and the surrounding dirt itself and that has not happened. Apparently the thinking is that that the interaction with the Martian soil has been unexpectedly actively poor. Saint I've seen the soil described scientifically as we'd sweet as the technical term for the soil of Mazi. Scott some weird properties. I think it's the fact that it is a very fine dust. We know that you get these. Dust storms on Mars. It's very very dry. There's virtually no moisture in it at all and moisture course helps with packing soil around things so that's was has been thinking so what they did was they They lent on it with the With the the the sort of dig that it's not really a digger rbis. It's got a technical name which is eluding me at the moment by. What is it the device vice robotic arm? That's what is called a robotic arm spied. It does but it's not meant for digging thing. The one on Phoenix was is the same device. PHOENIX kind of BACO that was used to scrape away The surface soil. And that's how we know that there's a permafrost of water ice in emotional topic. I don't believe The robotic arm to its technical. Nicholson on insight as digger on the end of it but what they did was basically. They put the robotic arm on to kind of give the you know give them all a push downwards downwards then took it away what happened was the mole popped out. Stay down is kind of popped out to channel and that's not what the desired effect tools. They wanted to go down starting to hear Lens cap scenario. He it's not popular all the way out. It's come out about halfway Cohan's night try different spot I I. I'm not sure I would guess they can. Because that's probably the robotic armies full but you would think that would have already tried that. I'm looking at some some photos I've taken off of the operation. I think I figured out the issue I think the Manet Mile should do. Somebody's join a circle with cross in it. Which I envisage is at target packet? I missed. That's what I reckon happen. He but yes. I don't know whether circle with a cross on it one bit of Martian. So is any different from across another. I built a house on a piece of land. Look perfectly normal until we started finding giant chunks of sense tied. You know still possibly could be something like that. But they've just been a lucky and they've come up against a big lump of rock. You're under the fruit underneath the soil. That rock is not under the circle with the crossing it. They did that but somebody snuck on the surface drawn that there and said we shouldn't put it in here and the scientists who got nude nude not at all listened the circle with a cross in it. I think is is a probably the end of the robotic Again A and letting the truth with letting truth getting away of good story once again. Well anyway they find and fix. It is what I gather gather. Yeah I should send necessarily email under the probably did very happy about that. I think that listen to the message has been delivered. I'm sure they listen to us. They don't we should lift our game comic relief. I think what they get out of us. Big Relief we will wait with bated breath and hope that they can solve this problem because it would be really fascinating and beneficial to find out what's going on down there all right. Let's Cape Ann on that at one. You're listening to space nuts. Andrew Dunkley here with the Great Fred Watson. Now let's take a little break and find out more about now sponsor express. VPN writer number one by Tech Writer. This is the one I use. I've been using it for a couple of years and I love it when I joined expressive. APA now our brand new new to the market. But I read a lot of reviews and did a lot of comparisons and it was just something about the business. This model that I particularly liked and couple years down the track honestly can't complying. Their interface is very easy to use. The service is second to non. I've had to contact them a couple of times about certain things that I wanted to do and I were brilliant so you may be wondering why I do need made a VPN at all. It's all about privacy Do you really want big tech companies governments and others knowing what's going on with your online activity even if you're having nothing to hide. 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Now Fred we going to talk about a Dwarf Planet Nine about it for Wall but now they've managed to secure an image of this bonker sized spheroid and confirm that it is probably the smallest Dwarf Planet Fan Safe Our should qualify that by explaining what a bunker is when I was growing I applied marbles and the big one was called a bunker. I'm pretty sure they call it something else in other countries but we call it a bunker where I'm from and these days that it Kinda doesn't fit in with social acceptance but anyway he doesn't where I grew up under the we call the big ones. The bullies the follies but in Bali. Bali Bali slightly more politically correct than a bunker. I think I'd choose between them. Really these guys Ed. Never I never played for Capes when applied because I locked my models. I didn't want to anyone taking them from me. Tended to avoid those guys. Yeah we looking at some work. That's been done through the very large telescope and they discovered well then discovered this planet. It but I have probably confirmed that it is in Data Dwarf Planet. Because I suppose they've been trying to figure that out for a little while that's right. It's I think this is a really really nice story. And what it highlights is the capabilities of the very large telescope. Which you'll remember is actually not warmed four telescopes each with an eight point to me tonight or tomorrow sitting on the mountain in Chile Cold Cerro paranal operated by the European Southern Observatory? And they they. Are you know if not the certainly among the finest equipped telescopes in the world Sunday in the southern hemisphere so the Via Not one of them one of those. Four telescopes is equipped with an instrument called sphere and around us. Fear is a relatively new instrument specifically designed for looking in detail sings. Along way away you know in other words Doing fine Resolution imaging A So a fear is actually an acronym as you might expect the acronym Kinda tells you what is for its stands for spectral polaroid metric high contrast exit planet research. They just making that up Costa. That's what you do with acronym but you think of an ice word and then your other words. I used to do it. Myself Berlin sermons. What is spectrum polar polar metric main? It means you're looking out the polarization of the light coming from the telescope Jackson. Polarization something with me with if you use polarizing sunglasses as you you eliminate some of the vibrations that the The light waves themselves participating. So you're eliminating half of that is a very powerful to ministry. Polarization can tell you about dusted space. It can tell you about the way lights has been affected by its passage through the media And it's generally useful thing. This in in this case is combined combined with spectroscopy. which is the breaking up of the light into its ranks colors so spectrum? Polling metric is a very You you know very capable analytical too but the main thing about sphere is that it's used in conjunction with what it called adaptive optics and adaptive optics use flexible MIRA technology coupled with some very sensitive devices in order to eliminate the The the distorting effect of this atmosphere as likely through the atmosphere it's affected by pockets of hotter and warmer Moore and colder air and basically blows the image but with clever technology. You can actually send distortion and a little bit like essentially. I'm being noise in a pair of noise. Cancelling headphones descends the are being noise and then put an inverse signaling. The cat cancels. You doubt it very much the same sort of thing. But you're doing it. With light an adaptive optics technology at basically removes to a large extent not completely but to a large extent extent it removes the distorting effects of the atmosphere so he can get very sharp imaging in fact you can make it compatible with the Hubble Space Telescope which is above the atmosphere. I read it together. I have to say the The ground based telescopes like a very much cheaper to run than the space telescope okay. So that's the backstory but if you can put it on the top of a mountain that exceeds you know someone's ability to breathe properly. Yeah it's not actually Soekarno Donnelly's not quite that ties abroad about three thousand three thousand beaches. which is a lot more amenable than the four thousand two hundred meters? What is which is a moniquet whether another sweet telescope souring Hawaii? You and I both been there but I'm being to pound although I have. They have not. Yes sorry that's just a bit of bragging that the APP so okay. He's astronomers and in particular I. I think it's a group if I remember royally it is from the lab Twat Dust Physique Say which is in France if you condemn horrible Frenchaccent. It's research based there who have used this instrument to to to look at one of the asteroids in the asteroid belt the the main belt asteroids between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter and they found that one of them the fourth biggest of the asteroids whose nine cj or expose it should be Depending on how you pronounce it looks. It's like idea that's what I thought. He is. Probably how it was pronounced depends on whether you like the wise Indian creek the anyway the bottom line is this thing is round. It's more or less a very koze. Not a perfect sphere but very close close to it and up for no object like a south for it to be very cool beans that he qualifies as being a Dwarf Planet because one of the requirements for an object to be a dwarf planet is that it is well it's being pulled into a spherical shape By its own gravity. The technical term is differentiated. means the you know the inside stuff has been Greg graduated if I put it that way by gravity. What you end up with is is a sphere and so and it is when you look at the images that we've seen from the European Southern Observatory this very distinctly round looking objects so it will be the International Astronomical Union in that August body sometimes known as the Uber Nerds Because say above all the rest of US nerds They will look at the evidence for he gabby being Being a dwarf planets are they'll they'll take a vote on its and once they've done that we might have an announcement that says here is the smallest of all the dwarf planets in the solar system. Because it's only one eight hundred. Fifty kilometers diameter found about thirty four hundred thirty kilometers. See all is it really as we speak. It's not bigger taller. That's right and it's very near the limit below which things don't have enough gravity to make themselves very cool And so it's a threshold object. That's a very nice where put it is. It's their up moons of some of the outer planets Sir particular. I'm thinking of moons of Saturn which we know very well thanks the Cassini mission some of those moons are actually chilly spherical. And they're not that much bigger than he is but I think the asteroid counts certainly because he's obviously around the sun rather than being overthrown. Another another object. It is a planet but a Dwarf Planet because of its small size actually I suppose. Finding delays objects and confirming them as of planets does in fact justify the decision to put Pluto in that category. When when we thought for so long that it was the only one now? We know that that's not the case. Exactly that's right. I agree with what you said. Allegedly allegedly not everybody does Many people think Pluto is a special case. But if you make it a special case then where do you draw the line precisely Ashley The other we'd seen about Hit Guy is that it is seemingly unblemished. Yes that's right. Everybody expects it. It'll be a big crisis on it because this thinking that once probably involved in a collision with with other objects and that's because we think this daybreak from that collision stealing asteroid but noise. He's got a few vaguely markings on it. But he's not pockmarked by you know huge craters which some of the moons of for example one of the moons of Saturn has it looks like the death star because he's got these enormous cry. I Trauma Likewise Phobos which is the biggest moon of. Let's go to big criterion into. I think one of those strange mocking exotica is a circle with crossing Fred. Gosh you're right well I see a face in it too so all right so almost certainly dwarf planet but yet to be ratified by the astronomical unions. Oh we'll wait until that happens. They'll send a memo. I'm sure they will probably to you. Yes we personally saw it. You're listening to space nuts with Andrew Johnson. Clean and Fred Watson space nuts and before we get onto some questions. Fred are have got to send out a special thank you to matt. Sayers Matt is a facebook influence. Actually I I must say that He's Youtube influence. But he's also part of the spice knots podcast group and he's been listening to us for a little while he's got his own youtube channel title and he did us a wonderful service the other day by giving us a huge plug on his facebook channel encouraging people to listen so if you are listening to us for the first first time courtesy of Matt thank you for that and thank you to matt for giving such a great endorsement really appreciate it. It's it's lovely and it's Sore Alaw our Youtube channel numbers jump significantly. So we're willing to hitting the one thousand so if you would like to follow us on in facebook subscribe to our channel. You can do that at YouTube dot com slash c slash space nuts and subscribe there. And you can listen to all our back editions of space nuts right up to the latest version you can even just hit the play button and listen to them to your Heart's content meantime. Sure that'll be something. Your wife or husband will be thrilled with even make the kids do it. They might have been learned something from me but they might now fred. Let's tackle some questions. We've got a few to get through today and this one comes from Josh shoes in Margaret River in Western Australia. What a beautiful part of the world? That's what winegrowing territories at Margaret River is. He says. Excuse me if this has been answered in episode on meet to get to. I think it has Josh Josh. BOT WE WANNA revisit it because of your question if blackhall's would be important to a multi universe or even another galaxy could a white hull be on the other. Aside of that given the medical skype it could matter falling into a black hole then being omitted out of the other side from a Whitehall possibly causing housing other big bangs or is this notion title science fiction Hope you get to cover this if it has already been in Cabot Blah Blah sorry. That's Okay Josh. We we're GONNA tackle this one. We'll Freddie's I'm just going to sit here and Giggle so let's go to the last last question. I is this notion total science fiction and the answer is he's not in the sense that when you look at the equations of General Relativity which base for the basis of our understanding of black holes You can reverse some of the signs. I'm I'm what you guys are so materials not being sucked into as being shutouts How that might be the case but we've never seen anything in observational astronomy? The could qualify for lytle. We're certainly seeing plenty of evidence that black holes exist so the idea of you know why tolls black holes in a black hole light whole combination combination being a portal to another universe autour multiple universe. That's a very common one. And he's won. The is beloved of science fiction writers. It's usually Komo whilst the mathematics let you Allow for that an and you know. There's nothing in the mathematics except forbids it. We've never observed it and that probably means that they don't exist so the must be something something in the physics of the universe that actually stops it happening And that might point to knotty cuisine. Our understanding of aren't the standing of electricity. which is a good thing because as soon as we find a hole in that that means well to mix a metaphor? It's off we can jump doubt it. Yeah it means that the might be phys. That's the bottom line. Okay you got Josh But yes but not as guys my bay. It's just all black and lot really. Gosh won't put up with this because we pay the big bucks for. That's why did it isn't it next question we have received this one from Jared van Royan. I hope I pronounced your name correctly. And we're not not sure where you from so we got to say from Earth he says hello. Mr Duncan Dr Watson. I've always wanted to be able to say this jared. That's my father's name anyway. I have been listening to you guys for a few months near and now he's GonNa stop and I love it. I'm a college student studying adding astronomy and I have some thoughts to maybe talk about firstly. I'd love to hear from you about what should be expected when looking through a standard telescope and and what your recommendation would be for new enthusiasts second. I'd like to ask a question I had thought of recently. What if outside of the the universe we know there are huge amounts of mass surrounding us and the gravity of this mess is what is increasing speed? Their universe's expansion. I doubt that now that stands scientifically speaking but I am curious. Thanks jared well. Do you WanNa stop telescopes telescope adverse. Sorry Mr. just. which way do you WanNa Start Telescope or massive the universe go the second one? It's the easy but the first leads to the second thing. You've written a book about telescopes only fair that you should answer this all sit back. I do like tennis goes. There's no doubt about it. I've been fascinated by telescopes ever since I was a young lad a hundred years ago but The thing think about that really characterizes. The era in which we live is that telescopes a relatively cheap. They suddenly went when I was growing up. If you wanted to be taken interest I in astronomy and use a telescope to build it. I unless you are very rich indeed. A podcast group. People had recent little sort of tatum Tay with with each other over over telescopes. I'm sure they were all comparing. You know young lady anyone that competition. Okay that's good to hear because there's a lot of astronomy is agenda nonspecific. Helgi three telescopes As I said that you can get fantastic telescopes now for really relatively low price and in fact the one hundred dollars. Buy You a telescope that I would love to have had when I was a lot school but in many anyways. The Sky's the limit. You can you. Can I think even with the most. You know eight hundred dollar telescope you would still be able to say things like some some of the rings of the Rings of Saturn and some of the moons of Jupiter As you progress through the price range and really what you get is what you pay foil Then you get to tell the scopes on mountings that will allow you to take deep sky photographs. If you've got the right kind of equipment you can you know you can spend spend spend on astronomy It's really depends on. Just what your what your resources alike. I at Shave Shave. Oh was a been a great enthusiast for beginners to bypass binoculars. Because not only can you get lovely views of the mood and on dark nights when there's no moon in the sky and if your wife from city lights beautiful views of things like style clusters in the way that sort of thing that really wanted but Oculus I have actually published even our podcast group page photos. They've taken with a digital camera through their telescopes and they come up with some great stuff. Yeah it'd be brilliant so what it was going to say about Douglas's economical so use them during the day and the instruments as well as being an astronomical too but the telescope is what most people won't buy that usually they mean one that's mounted on a stand and often the standard is actually what what differentiates between good one and a bedroom because there's nothing more frustrating than having a telescope on flimsy standards vibrating all over the place. He tried to look through it and find an object. It is not easy thing in the world so the quick answer. Is You get what you pay for. But it's plenty their loss of websites giving giving you comparative assessments of different telescopes usually run by commercial organizations but most of these organizations and I won't name any coasted. I don't know why jared from those organizations that not so much out to make a fast buck to get people interested in the hub. They usually run by. The telescope. Shops are usually run by people who are also amateur astronomers so they know about it and they came to engage people. Then let them see what marvelous. Helgi astronomy is quickly moving on to the question about whether surrounding us. Yeah whether I'll oh university if there is such a thing as a multi we really don't get the answer to that multiple universes could the gravity crop rotation of an outside universe be affecting affecting our own and that's not a daft question. There are people who think about things like that one of them. WHO's never mentioned? I think many times before all is forgotten now so doesn't matter come to being omitted the very great mathematician who postulates the idea that one university eventually generates another one via the mechanism of colds. Embarrassing name was on the tip of I took him in and go now. He's gone but that's what happens when you get to one hundred and fifty years old. Yes and always happens while recording a podcast. That's right but the point to make about this is gravity and so forth fundamental forces of nature gravity's the weakest weakest and he's not just the weakest by you know a little bit. It's a Let me try and remember something of the order of tend to the eighteen in times weaker than the other fundamental forces and so There is something about it. That's it's very different. And some people suggest that that's because the APPs gravity leaks out of universe into other universities. And if that's the case then you might expect there to be imprint From the universes on our universe and the place to look for that is the cosmic microwave background radiation. The flash of the BIG BANG which itself is is mottled with slightly warmer and cooler. Temperature changes and so which are essentially caused by sound waves in the in the flash of the Big Bang might be way you might find evidence of the the gravity of another universe impacting? It's unlikely however to cause the the acceleration of the expanding universe because because I think that is too great to be basically the reason Okay very good jared as an astronomy student. You get an a plus for asking this question because there were thought provoking well done. Let's move onto the next question. And it comes from Michael Brill. Michael has sent us a stunning photographs that he took while at Mawson station Muslim stations in Antarctica to research station people spend a We'll probably six months down the in rotation going backwards and forwards and a couple of people who've done over the years and the only real way to get there is by by ship. It's very isolated and there was a famous case of a researcher. There who got ill and had to treat herself Elf by satellite phone to the doctors some years ago. which made the news that isolated and Gordon Amazing Place? So thanks for the photo Markle I do you hope you put it on the space. Nuts pod podcast group on facebook because I think people would love to see it but he said Hi guys firstly on the first time longtime so first question longtime listener. I assume that means spent all of last year more than station. Listening to your podcast. Wasn't there anything else to do. The trip was so good in fact. I'm heading down again. My question is in regards to gravitational waves my understanding is they stretch the fabric of time while snotty interacting with pretty much. Anything anything else. So can they interact with each other for example if two waves converged or intersected each other out would the disturbance of time change change hope that made sense and yeah. That's an interesting question in my new book. So let's figure book that I'm writing at the moment. We do actually have multiple gravitational wave effect so yes the answer is yes you can answer this. Just make that stuff up as long as most. What's lots fiction? Rod is due date. Yes some scientists do as well. Let me just backtrack for five minutes. Because I remember the name of the person whose name was on the tip tip of my tongue it Sir sir. Roger Penrose of course thought about the imprint of external universities yes British cosmologists taught configured with a nine block. That that's right. Okay the answer to this question is I don't know you and I I'm really interested to know what is the consequence of gravitational waves interacting with one in another because in the study of lie and maybe licensed perhaps a bit of physics. I understand best because that was what I did. It is my special topic for many many years when waves come together. They interfere with one another in fact he can get the result where light waves actually cancel. Cancel each other out if they are out of phase so that peak of one corresponded with the trough of another something down there that signals canceling agents. They just dislike radio signals. Do I'm I'm I'm not enough of a gravitational way specialist to know whether that is possible of for gravitational ways to do that. I do however know people who are gravitational wave especially. I'm going to go and ask them. I will catch up with one of my colleagues. Who knows about this sort of thing? I'll see him on Thursday at some meetings that I'll be at and I would like to talk to him about exactly after they stopped like the interference of essential. I think he's a very very interesting question. And so maybe we can follow it up next week. Yes but Michael Hold on and we'll we'll try and follow up on that. I think it's a really interesting question. Very good thank you so much appreciate it and thank you to everybody I must say afraid in scrolling through the podcast group. I noticed a couple of people who put posts on directly pointing at you your recent appearance on the drum. Oh good yeah and there's also a another photographic scroll down far enough of the Sherbert life album cover which we talked about last week. My favorite band growing up was sure but I went and saw them once. And there's a photo of you with a space nut by the name of Carrie. Carrie Brown and I must send special hello at to carry. Because she's an Uber Fan especially new fan of yours. I think in ED lovely to say that facebook page is just going gangbusters. And it's great to say every body interacting. It's not just about listening to us. He ever on every awake. It's it's all about talking to each other to and learning from each other and sharing each other's photographs and experiences in astronomy and. I think it's fantastic that everyone's during that and I think well I have a five hundred people in that group now for a fantastic isn't it. Maybe should include me under. If you're on the send me facebook. One one might try and find out how to
165: Twinkle Twinkle Very Old Star
"In fifteen seconds guidance journal and nine technician sequence spence nuts three to to space feels good hello and thank you for joining us on the space and that's podcast cast <hes> my name's andrew dunkley your host joining me as always professor fred watson astronomer <unk> afraid. Did i andrew. How are you sir all right. Thanks good to talk to you as always yes l. Now today we're going to try and tackle a few questions a little lighter about the big rip wormholes and an interesting sort of local one <hes> about wi fi interference from <hes> satellite intimate in in regard to the square kilometer awry. That's a really interesting question because they're alive or each other really <hes> but i got to talk about the oldest star in the we know universe that may have been discovered so that is exciting and long-haul space travel may be impossible because of brian damage now. I'm i'm assuming the brian damage happens after the long haul travellers started all we are suffering brian damage because we're thinking of going. I'm not sure which but we'll get to that a little lighter first of all fred this ancient star <hes> could be the oldest one ever discovered. Yes that's right the something of a rice going on with <hes> with this in the world of astronomy a damn australia is pretty well actually so i can remember back doc in the nineteen eighties when you know every week seemed we discovered the more distant objects will usually sells until the the record for the most distant object known to humankind humankind kept tumbling and a little bit like that with the oldest star. We say these things come up and then few months later. There's another one that's even older. It's mick jagger by the way i know a few role of yeah so the just to clarify we will one day be able to say well. Let me let me start. Let again when we look deep into the sky as you own. All our listeners know must've anyway euros looking back in time <hes> ah so you can imagine a situation where you're going to be looking back at really answering galaxies in fact there are so many she can see individual styles because of things like like gravitational lenzing which means that you are seeing stars very early. The history of the universe but we're talking about here is not bad. It's not the looking back in time. I'm tripping trick or trip which way you like it. It's not looking back in time trick. It is the ability to see stars in our neighborhood and which have evidence of being ancient and the way you pick that out is by initially is by <unk> style having strange colors and that's how the australian <hes> <unk> telescope run by strengthening national elite investigate siding spring observatory. They couldn't have them scott gripe for doing that because he got a whole array of filters can take images of the sky really detailed images of the sky looking through the different filters that allows scientists to say while he is a candidate for an all star but that's not enough what you then have to do is follow up with a big telescope one that will allow you to look at the spectrum of the style that the radio spectrum trim and to see this bach owed of information superimposed on the spectrum and it abaco really good analogy because when we look at the spectrum action style is exactly what we see the black lines on the barcode equate to what we call absorption lines essentially the thing bring excuse me fingerprints of different talents in the styles atmosphere so the most abundant element in the atmosphere ecstasies hydrogen because that's what the universality astounded offense and what happened in the very early universe there was nothing else actually was hailed as well but hot hydrogen helium were the only do things substantially that were there in the universe the tracks elements in a couple of other things that that's not pull to this context and the first generation of stars earliest wants to full would have basically not much more than hydrogen in spectrum probably been a failure because it was in the interiors of those stars that the other elements full <unk> the oxygen the cabin the iron all of all those things have full did site styles that first generation of stars would give rise to some of these heavier elements then because we believe the first generation towns were very massive they lived short lives measured intensive millions of years rather than billions of years like some at those massive styles would all have ended in a supernova explosion which blows the daybreak from which they have made at least atmosphere that debbie three from which the atmosphere is made out into the wild blue yonder which this guy's means the interstellar medium that the space between the stars what does kazan provides rule materials for subsequent generations of status to full house if they fade upon themselves and recreate accordingly so h generation of styles builds on what went before it and atmospheres are enriched by elise atoms that have been created in the previous previous generations of stars so if you want to find a very old star what you need to look for a something that's got very little in it other than other than hydrogen and helium very little spectrum and that's basically what has happened with this particular style of gotta tell you what it's called od audrey <unk> crack six zero five four zero point one eight <unk> full three to three point one forgot that these prefixes s._m._s. so i gotta side again because it's just so up all the rest rest of it as a message just stunts sky scott probably so so that basically what we'd cup and that particular da whose name i'm not going to say again turns out to have virtually nothing in it other than hydrogen leland the one thing that isn't it which is kind of gay just to hold his <unk>. This is really the yardstick by which as old styles adjudged what is in it is iron and i am content as a measure of how earliest <hes> has appeared in the history of the the universe. This one has a nine content of one pop a fifty billion so it's very very spouse in iran dan in fact some people are describing as anemic which is very nice chemists resigned deficiency very anaemic style end of its iron content is record low that state the bottom line so that swap the published paper will say it's got a vitamin to describe describe them as ultra metal poor these they started a metal by the way to donovan is everything except tien-shan helium until that sounds bizarre <hes> <hes> but <hes> we think of even oxygen in combat and things like that as metals but the metal in the normal sense of the word at that that aside <hes> this is very very poor in on that places it in the record books as being at the moment they always known stop <unk> but what is this space in a couple of months of even older i suppose where is it do. We can we point. It's actually yes it. It's tim the milky way galaxy. It's actually in the halo of our galaxy that made that not the disk of the galaxy but there is a spherical. The family rarefied distribution of stars around the galaxy. We call it the halo that's where it is is about thirty five thousand light years away as the crow flies so <unk> a rather distant object but still in our galaxy and of great interest because it's an icon disalow nice coming from i think it's the law throughout thomas norlander who's from <hes> i think he's from the australian national university <hes> he <hes> he has this lovely quotation. Which is that's amount of iron one one party in fifty billion. It's like one drop of water olympic swimming swimming pool not a glass of water but one drop of water in olympics in class. Yea certainly isn't a name a star across they probably others at the <hes> <hes> this one's in our own system but <hes> could they be all the ones in other galaxies that we might never be able to catch onto. Yes that's true. I mean you know i guess we could look for these things also in <hes> nearest neighbour galaxies. I'm like at the andromeda galaxy <hes> it said it it is possible that when we get to the next generation have <unk> telescopes <unk> sorry the extremely large telescopes <hes> we will find that we can <unk> nearby by galaxy <unk> extent that we can do the measurement sell them and you can bet your life that they'll be really answered styles as well these styles. Are you know the styles that a a relatively small compared with the giants of the universe until they've been very stops with bending the hydrogen fuel. That's why there's still going strong after thirteen probably thirty billion years or so she that's a long time isn't it. I mean it is not to get your head around a stabbing banging existence for that long but then again the universe has been in existence for longer. So why are we surprised so that's the story of j. one six zero five four zero point one on its one four four three to three point one you do it yeah. Did you yeah so sadly it's not one of the first generation of styles but it probably belongs to the second generation the ones that were formed from the debris daybreak the generations very good fascinating all right bye but watch this space is for is set for it says because probably tell you about an older one in a couple of weeks time. You're listening to space nuts. Let's andrew dunkley fred watson parfait week ago spends nuts afraid a lot of people people have asked us about long haul travel and we're going to actually tackle <hes> one of those kinds of questions a little lighter <hes>. How can we do this. We talk the the the other day about <hes> long-haul travel and spice using perhaps <hes> solar sails <hes> but the the reality of sending people people long distance versus a small spacecraft is very very different venture and we certainly don't have the technology to fold space which is certainly something that is being considered in the realm of science fiction so if we're gonna send people long distance we're going to have to do it the old fashioned and why and now starting to look like that might be more difficult than we first thought yes that's right. I mean i think come come. It's fair to say that <hes> of the technological problems that face us intent of getting people for example two miles the radiation issue is the baps the most difficult to solve yet. You can provide your astronauts with an atmosphere. You can probably build a spacecraft that will <hes> will mimic the gravity by rotation by centrifugal fullest all of those do things but what you can't do easily without lots of shielding as stop the the subatomic particles getting through the skin of the spice guy and it it particularly pertains delong holes buys fly exactly as you say so just looking at what we've done in humans bags flags so far most of the experience ab- astronauts and you know the medicine that is it's been done with astronauts relate to scientists either in the international space station or its predecessors like beer in the policies and things like that those are long long duration spaceflight but the very much in the local environment at all of those astronauts who protected to allow <unk> by the natives favor of the earth they basically the magnetic shielding the s. The s magnetism builds around the the planet so certainly the international space station. He's well within so i'm traveled to the moon of course meant astronauts left out that protective detectives zone around the us but that direction was not that much more than a week you know of the older of seven into ten days and that means that dosages of the subatomic particles were relatively low. Oh i'm so we you know we don't have any direct experience of plunking people in the middle of nowhere and watch what happens when they radiated by two specific sources one is the solar wind you know this wind of subatomic particles <hes> ah basically electrons protons electrons from the some but the other really may be more dangerous one as the in the what's called the cosmic ray flux of cosmic rays actually come from alexey another galaxies that not from the sun itself their background subatomic particles that come from a source is actually the not well defined. You know that they are we're within our galaxy probably a lot of stuff that results from a neutral stuff that results from bass black holes from supernova all of that stuff is floating around and we are irradiated where they actually cosmic rays were would i think they will i measured before the first world war aw by scientists using balloons to see you know to to record what happened so the cosmic ray flux and particularly the high energy cosmic cosmic ray flux is something that we i guess recognized for a long time as putting long-haul astronauts at risk but now some work has been done by scientists actually they're both the two scientists who publish this work they both the university of california irvine and they both <hes> basically involved with radiation oncology that says specialism and it's work they have done in looking at it's relatively low doses the kind of things that you might find you know irradiate astronauts traveling to mas but of alone periods of time and of course astronauts they've used my says <hes> basically as as substitutes had as we do so they did this six months they basically exposed mice to low level neutron radiation for six months so then look at the at the neurons in the brains in particular laser the salads that essentially still memories and things of that sort and concluded. It's not a two while they concluded that they worked great while ago fine structure in the neurons iran's has been damaged. Maybe some of the connections have as well so the there were clearly you know that studies of course after after the irradiation tested device to to find out in behavioral tubs how so how how they were coping this they say the outcome about beheshti studies demonstrated that mice exposed to neutrons for six months at trouble with learning adapting acting installing memories for example these mice were less likely to be interested in a new toy that being placed in that testing compared with a toy that had already seen before the control mice the other hand would take much more time to explode in utility than the old toy similar tests but what was was also really interesting is that the irradiated mice demonstrated a social problems much more likely to avoid <unk> social interactions at difficulty dissociating forgetting adverse event that happened in the past the the space radiation induced changes ages that increased anxiety levels so they essentially believe that they've replicated what would happen to human huma brian in spice and they believe that they could this could significantly impact once again quoting network could significantly impact the ability of astronauts responded under distress or in unexpected situations and what they've done wrong. They kind of you know translate those findings into what that might mean in human terms. They say we estimate in a crew of five astronauts traveling to mazda back we would expect to at least one member to display severe via deficits in cognitive function by the time they returned to us thaddeus scary. Very scary could be all of them. Couldn't it says statistically one in five but you could actually go the other way. Yeah that's right. They qualify qualify that by saying. This is just one study. The results must be replicated but it does raise the sobering possibility. The galactic cosmic radiation exposure asia represents a significant obstacle today's space travel and once again our coal on science fiction to provide the answer and in the movie resigns. They wrap their heads in aluminium foil that that there it is. Why did they think of that. What is going uh on if you want to follow up on this the u._s. Addition of the <unk> compensation astronauts brands is subject to long lasting damage due to lotus does the conversation the station website is one of the best online facilities really getting down and dirty into some deep meaningful staff. I go go to the website so often. There's always something interesting and they really doing a great in-depth analysis. It's fantastic absolutely relate largely because you actually answered two or three questions that were formulating in my mind while you were talking because i was going to say you know we're protected by the magnetosphere. We don't go out beyond much except to go to the moon and back and we were only at their awake. So why haven't we tested along whole trip sending someone at for months and then coming back over losing so it's a two month trip justice say what it's like probably a good thing we didn't yeah i. I think that's right so that's another problem. We need to solve. Yeah i mean. I think you know you just have to send about that with some aluminium. Uh <unk> aluminium foil just wrap that stuff around here. It is in a good sorry which movie was in the movie movie signs they will. They silly lally medium hat said that the island's couldn't read their minds sir yeah but you know it will protect you from all that other stuff as as well good that put it in microwave oven on the phone and i might mention please as forgive me for forgetting your nine but we got a message on facebook the other day from someone who is looking at becoming a doctor but specializing in space ice and wanted us to actually talk about some of the afflictions that astronauts might face. Oh she'll be fascinated to have heard that particular problem. That's a new problem but there how many many others likely issue with <hes> with damage to the is refugee caused muscle wastage is a big issue as well as just the list is rather along. Isn't it fred. It is specs petain's alive and well. It's a career that i think in the in the spice while it was probably pretty competitive to get into about. It's <hes> yeah it it. It's very very interesting. Research is being done to the melting well worth pursuing because again at night people going forward board because this is just going to get bigger and bigger imagine okay you're listening to the space nuts podcast with nutty professor for watson and the nuttier the andrew dunkley space nuts now fred to the question question what's board <hes> which is way we put all questions except it's virtual and we we're gonna try and tackle a few today and hopefully get the truth without interruption from one man. Do the cat who is in your presence right now so hopefully you'll silo but <hes> jim carrey on. It's not like grandchildren walking on your tell you that much now first question comes from a west from wiz smith highways if the universe is infinite all. We really don't know how big it is. How can we categorically say there's not auden enough matter for a big crunch with the discovery of new galaxies blackhall's etc and we don't completely understand doc energy. Oh doc matter for that matter <hes> who's to say that the universe went stop expanding and reversed itself it starts at some point respectfully with smith now we have kind of touched on this before but but <hes> it is worth sort of looking into that <hes> potential crunch i mean when i was a kid that was the the belief that the universe would expand like a like a rubber balloon and ridge boy where it will go and crush back in on itself an author was going to happen the next day but now we think it's not gonna do that at all but they are. Obviously people like me who wonder why it went well. It's a great thing you talk to <hes> to to to to ask. Let me just congress is saying this in the i think we've said this before about a brunch. Mitts who was is one of the co discoverers of energy that the accelerated expansion of the universe he always used to refer to the the big crunch has gone up gabe <hes> which which is the big bang backwards out. Get is the the advocate boring that one is a good one but look wise. He's right on the money and we can't say categorically that there is not enough massive for big crunch because of you know all we can say is is the uh we look within the observable universe now. The expansion is accelerating their horizons to the universe band which we can't see and things like the cosmic microwave background radiation. That's one of them stuff stuff like that as well but the fundamental reasons why we can't see the whole universe and indeed we don't know whether there is a whole universe we we eat may be infinite is west suggests one of the things that has been suggested. Is that what we see in our accelerated expansion is just one little blob bob a much much bigger universe. Which is you know somebody <unk> which are in a state of expansion some probably in a state of slowing down on expansion as as distinct from accelerating expansion <hes> but we can't detect those and so you've got to you know whatever you make a statement about what the universe might do abilities caveats to it <hes> the evidence at the moment is that sunday's vows the universe we can observe is concerned it is it is expanding more rapidly than it was five billion years ago so that's all all we can say we can't rule out a big crunch because you know exactly the reasons that wednesday suggested so. I can't rule out a big papa no we we come or a big rip. Whatever look what we it's white scientists particularly cosmology symptoms. They sometimes sound wishy washy because he's saying well. You know the best information we have at the moment is this this and this but that really is only say it econ sign anything categorically berkeley about a big crunch but stands what we're saying is. The expansion is ongoing and accelerating. That's correct so that's taught we know definitively but we don't know categorically now the essay next next taiwa the <hes> the ways hopefully that will help you sleep. It not now <hes> moving right along. I've been wondering a lot about half. Humans will travel to other solar all the systems <hes> while i wanted brian so when meta and i know that the regular rocket y y cut it would take thousands of years to get at i've heard <hes> people talk about wormholes and all same kind of odd the whole idea my question to you is is there any scientific backing the worm halls exist and and if there is is it a possible maine's of transportation as technology gets better in the next few hundred thousand years sincerely western minds oregon u._s._a. Thanks western austin went holes. Yeah no this you know there are theoretical entity but they come completely without any evidence of a you know the practical nature the was so in the seventies when people were looking at the physics of black holes it was realized is that you could you could <unk> equations. You could just reverse the sign of time if you've got negative time <hes> the physical <unk> seem to work and you end up with white hills rather than black holes. A dentist suggestion was made that if you've got you know to these things back to back whether they were wide tells a black holes might fulda web hall which essentially linked unrelated parts of the universe but there's no observational evidence whatsoever for this an even if the was they extremities of gravitational distortion that you get anywhere near a black hole a such that it's it's very hard to see any technology in the next ten thousand years probably the code of conduct so my guess is that we are stuck with conventional prevention methods they might however allow us to do interstellar travel bowl rapidly than the current regime of chemical rockets sits at which really made for the nearest style. He's talking about sixty thousand years of slow but if he can augment that with light sale technology under essentially projects looking at that <hes> including me we spoke about last week by the way not reminds me. We were gonna ed what the big news item was about did put it on facebook and i and i must confess a little bit of my reaction. Action was a bit all all i were announcing was that they did it and it worked any work but they actually monies to steer and in fact to put the spacecraft into a high robot which you know it's it is quite big news yeti city so it's possible that ally mando yeah mondays. It's big not actually if you go. The furniture is just about loud. You know anyway so like cell technologies. Oh jeez promising in terms of certainly would small spacecraft accelerating things to a significant fraction of the speed of lines until there is this a project breakthrough star shells which is an initiative of the russian billionaire yuri milner donna funded by your email which is to look at the possibilities of sending a very small space craft and by small main sentiment olvera thereabouts <hes> to the nearest star proxima centauri with a light sail powered by a laser either on the authority of the c._b._s. Yes that's all doing at. The moment is looking the <unk>. I haven't seen a find where he pulled on that but you can tell that people are thinking of the existed so it may be that the technologies that we could employ but women hos doesn't like what about folding space it in a sense and stats. It's related to him. Also they was a paper which read is probably about twenty thirty years ago now which was published <hes> i think in the u._k. Astronomical journal where somebody looked at the physics of the wolf driving stop track which involves folded bags and very quickly rounded the conclusion that you need more than the entire energy budget of the universe to make it work so everybody kinda lost interest after them to understandable okay so probably not western unfortunately no the states. I might find something else else now final question today hi andrew and fred i got i do not dive this time. A first time albert longtime listener wall reading one of the regular manufacturing monthly newsletters who how exciting i came across a story about a western australian minister for original donald development alana mckinnon switching on the national broadband network in australia western australia's midwest for those who died the national broadband broadband network is at high speed internet service and in some areas in remote country. It has to be fed by a wireless signal. I presume the midwest this includes areas just south of the region encompassing lee square kilometer orion other radio astronomy projects so that rise in questions actions in relation to the technologies used for the wireless broadband network which bring advanced technologies remote pharma's given the sky 'sensitive sensitive isn't putting powerful wireless base stations one hundred or two hundred kilometers away potentially a risk. How close is too close. How big is the sign for a billion dollar l. international project. How does the sky deal with noise from such sources. Is there a no fly zone for drains and other industrial oregon cultural aircraft that are mobile sources of our if noise dogs and cats living together who shot j on cain to hear thoughts. That's from justin availble melvin. Thank you yet and you know that's a fantastic question is right on the money and i think just in santa's of he's got some handle on the technology so i can direct him strikes to the <hes> to the whole season it can which is the web page a. which relates exactly to this there is a web page on our website that let's see <hes> department of industry innovation signs one of their web pages called australian radio quiet zone w way and that is all about the essentially the exclusion zone full the <unk> radio frequency interference in the square kilometer array and it's quite extensive that website entree gives details of not just the area that's covered which actually is is more the five hundred kilometers in diameter. It's a large area centered on a point which is about three hundred and fifty kilometres northeast of gerald carrollton which is the radio quiet zone and that is actually covered by a whole lot of legislative regulatory regulatory policy instruments that actually set up the legalities of what you can and can't do that so that they they include things like the midwest radio quiet zone frequency band plan that <unk> frequencies he can operate them the assignment licensing instructions instructions that i think that's all part of the structure in particular at their things like radio communications <unk> plus licenses for satellite phone c._b. Radio <unk> potential devices as well as a radio telescope mineral resource management area. All of these things are already already in place. That's in the zone which is out to seventy kilometers <unk> <unk> out his own beyond that to one hundred fifty kilometers tomatoes and then there's something called the coordination zones which go out to two hundred sixty kilometers radius so you talk about five hundred kilometers all told <unk> quick look italy's when this question came up and of course the the the thing about radio transmissions that are used for communications and things like that. They're very specific frequencies on that big gaps in those frequency bands which are the ones that are interested interesting radio astronomers and that's why these things that have been tallied with one another. I know from talking to astronomers at the murchison jason radio astronomy observatory that one of the problems that they have notwithstanding all this stuff is that the telescopes are so sensitive the <unk> radio interference from reflections from the mood if you've got communication signals which are thousands of kilometers from the telescope they still effectively finding their way to the telescope because of <unk> basically because of reflections from the moon so it. It is a very difficult issue. It's kind of similar you know to the problems we have in optical astronomy where a lot yellowish in yeah yeah but i'm just a suggestion that just how she goes has a website because the details of that need particular how interacts with things like high speed <unk> high-speed road onto the n._b._a. What about the no-fly zones and drawings implying polling places well covered. It's all covered justin at it doesn't mean it will stop stuff from getting discount but at least i've come up with a formula that will reduce the amount of interference in eh them to define the little green men whatever else was at the <hes> in the long term all <hes> an answer to justin's other question a was kristen shifted he shot j._r. He didn't ask that question i just i hope you'll just just huma a andrew. He gets like this giant time happens after i've spent a lot of time in space summers and could be taste better be. It'll probably a lot of time in the space between my e-z <hes> one more thing before we go for it. We have to shout out to our patrons ends again. <hes> fantastic people and the numbers are growing. We now have thirty three patrons who <hes> supporting podcast and we really appreciate them. <hes> <hes> putting up a few dollars each month to to cape is on the national broadband network because it's don expensive but <hes> yeah fantastic. Thank you and don't forget to follow us on facebook. We put a lot of information on our facebook page so do research for the space nets podcast on facebook and follow us and like ass staffan often share with your friends that would be that would be fantastic. <hes> get the word and get a bigger bigger bigger audience because it's good for my ego. <hes> i think fred has always it's fantastic right fan and <hes> look forward to talking to you again very very soon sounds great andrew thank. You have a good weeks fixings u._2. Fred watson astronomer at large and thank you feel company again this week and we will join your next time on another edition office space nuts to the spice nuts podcast subscribe to the podcast on institure or your favorite podcast distributor. This is another gas production from dot com.
"I love this podcast. Support this show through the acoss supportively. It's up to you how much you give. And there's no regular commitment. Just hit the link in the short description to support now. Fifteen seconds guided journal admission sequence. Uh space nuts three to report report. It feels good. Hello and thank you for joining on episode two hundred and forty nine off the space. That's podcast on your host andrew. Dunkley the on the job at just got thrown at me. But here i am so what the job and my partner in crime here on. Space nazis of course astronomer at large professor. Fred watson hullo fred morning andrew. How're you doing. i am. Well thank you. It's good to talk to you. And we've got a lot to celebrate today because we have cracked a million downloads as of last week since january of last year million downloads of the podcast on our current platform and then we went back and thought. Well i wonder how many were before that and so it does actually look like we've we've certainly surpassed two million downloads since we started which is just extraordinary. So big thank you to everybody. Who has downloaded once or a million times. I don't whatever we appreciate your support. A allison is general patrons for putting a few bucks in here and they. It's just fabulous and i never thought i'd say the day where i could boast a million downloads isn't And hugh back in. The studio tells me that that puts us up into the the higher rankings of podcasts. Globally and with the numbers we've recorded in the last few years. We're probably one of the top one percent. Podcast which i think is just an extraordinary achievement. Totally dumbfounded that to all fats like us or getting that much attention but Yeah it's terrific so thank you to one and all around for supporting spice knots. An onward and upward we will we will show ingenuity in the future In fact we're going to talk about that. Shortly we're also going to talk about the square kilometer array because government. The australian government's chuck it in a couple of dollars. And when i say a couple of dollars. I'm being literal now i'm not. I'm just stirring the pot and some bad news for those of us who were looking forward to jumping on the uss enterprise and going to walk factor. One never gonna happen. New research is the whole thing and we got questions from rusty and donnybrook and deal from toronto and one more thing on to add before we get started. Fred apologies in advance. If you hear weird noises coming from my end of the spectrum of gotland skype is today doing a bit of work. At the back end. They may be cutting pavers at some stage. They'd just will barring them in. The car told them i was busy. Couldn't help but bearing from the front yard out of the truck to the backyard where they're putting the pavers down getting a little barbecue area done and the upper plateau of my yard which has been a useless piece of land for a long time. I very excited is going to be a putting green. Talk about self-indulgence send you a picture spice worthy but i'll do it anyway. So if some noise in the background just ignore it. They not he But i ingenuity success. At last i tried to stay up and watch it. But the thing about nasa no disrespect is. If something's at nine o'clock it's twelve o'clock so i just couldn't hang in bride. I made sure. I looked at it the next morning. Fantastic and great success to get it off the ground do a little bit of a haver appear wet and a landing. It was just all over and done in less than a minute but it was it was it might have taken no time at all. But it was one of the great achievements in human history. I think absolutely agree with you. Andrew was the wright brothers moment and of course the ingenuity helicopter carries a little bit of fabric from the white brothers first airplane yes the wright brothers not the white bread is not going to be much left at the plein. I have you known of but it will be lovely so the first step in aviation on another planet. The next step will be another flight which is a little bit more ambitious because they'll rise a little bit higher thing three meters or so maybe a bit more but also move forwards and backwards fifteen meters and i think there are two flights like that just to check out that the the aerial vehicle can can move as the mission control is wanted to and then the last of the five there are two flights left. Because it's a sweeter five flights that they're planning they will go far and wide. We know what they have in mind. But i'm sure we'll see some amazing images coming back from the surface of mars. The one that i was most impressed with there was a little movie. That perseverance itself took of the flight. Perseverance sixty five meters away just to make sure things really went ballistic helicoptered in cloud that cameras or something like that. But there's a nice shot only black and white as i'm seeing it at the moment of taken by the helicopter itself looking down at its own shadow sword that one year it's great. He's a fantastic stuff and actually you can see not just the shadow but you can see the tire tracks of perseverance as well the same shot so fantastic stuff and we believe that you know. Perhaps maybe when we speak next week they might be more to report on. What's happening with the engineer to helicopter. The test on looking forward to fred is towards the end of the mission win. Perseverance unveils its cannon and ingenuity rose more serious and this is going to be a question without notice but we did get a question via facebook from somebody asking in the test phases of ingenuity on the ground. They had to try and replicate the conditions that they would face on mars because of the completely different environment and the very very thin atmosphere less than one percent of earth etcetera etcetera. How did they replicate the gravity situation. Did they do it with computer modeling. What was the what was the guy so. The question was from in front of me. I street from john brown and i kind of joked yet. So joe question is yes. Can you can clearly compensate for the lack of pressure. You just put the thing in something. Like a vacuum with only one percent of the of the atmospheric pressure. But the gravity to to simulate and so what judd suggests is do they come up with an atmosphere somewhere in the middle between earth and mars. And i'm sure that is one of the tests that they did. They would have tested probably with with mars atmospheric pressure and earth gravity. Because that's giving them a really tough gig. They've got three times the gravity. They're going to experience on mars and the atmospheric pressure on mars. So i would guess they did that as a check to see where it you know how it performed under those really arduous conditions. It's engineers always design things to be to withstand two or three times. The stresses that they're supposed to be the way they do that. But i think judd suggestion of putting an atmospheric pressure somewhere in the middle between earth and mars. That would also be a test that will be done as well so anyway. The bottom line is that the tests all worked and so did the helicopter. So we're in good shape. Did they got it right and count white for what happens next. Thanks thanks for the question. John because i did want to throw that in when we talked about ingenuity and our remembered at the last second which is one of my terrible habits trait forgetting of the last second which is what i do and i did forget in talking about ingenuity to mention that those transmissions that were received from the first flight actually came through australia. They came through the tidbinbilla deep space tracking station at in camera. Where our good friend glenn. Nagel was certainly talking about it quite a bit on the radio. That's lucky because they got electricity connected last week. Clipping guy would stop the. They'll be much more to talk about in the future in in the very short future regarding perseverance and ingenuity on mars. It's all happening all-systems-go at the moment right. Let's move on to the square kilometer array. We've talked about this many times. But we haven't really talked about the money but we are going to now because the australian government's chipping in a mere three hundred ninety seven million dollars in so in. Us dollars that's three bucks a little bit more than that but yeah that's real money. I mean it's you know. This is an announcement that was made last week. I have to say that my colleagues piccolo work with an amongst in the department of industry science energy and resources who put together the budget considerations and things they were working flat out on this for the past few weeks and certainly last week there were getting ill tidied up and then the announcement was made on wednesday which is great so what. This signifies is the australian government's ongoing support for the square kilometre project which i'll listeners. I'm sure we'll remember is is two telescopes. An array of telescopes hundred and eight hundred sixty thousand of them is the number. We're getting that right. i think so. No one hundred and thirty hundred thirty one thousand and seventy two antennas. Which looked like christmas trees in australia. That's the low frequency array the mid frequency you array is going to be in south africa where they have something like sixty dishes which look at the slightly higher frequency range so it's a two pronged attack on the universe to build the world's biggest telescope and as i said this signals australia's ongoing support for it. Of course government sought after put the positive spin on things like jobs and growth. Those are the mantras governments all over the world and indeed this is really big numbers. Involved there too. There are something like three hundred fifty new jobs being created during the construction period. The ten year construction period then over the fifty year life of the project. Because this is going to outlast you and true yes it is they'll be two hundred and thirty ongoing positions. This is this is serious stuff these are. These are big numbers for for the jobs. This gigantic project will build a just mentioned as well that a well. Two things one is that. It's it's not just australia in this. I think sixteen nations and are signed up for it sixteen member countries all over the world. Actually i might just listen because it's quite an interesting bunch australia. Canada china france germany india italy japan korea the netherlands portugal south africa spain sweden switzerland and the united kingdom are in the You might notice one country. That isn't in there as the united states because they they're interested in radio astronomy really align. With what the member countries are doing. So it's not. It's not taking your bat and going home or anything. Just a natural natural thing about the scientific endeavors of these countries but to anybody. Who's listening to us in one of those listed countries. Well done your country's part and parcel of of the esca community and what it was going to say is that that investment that the australian government has put in it sort of it. Means that what you're doing is you're stimulating. Foreign income flows into australia because of because of that and certainly in the first thirty years of operations they estimate one point. Eight billion in foreign income will come. Come into into australia so important stuff. One final thing to mention is a there is a chunk of that budget. Sixty four point four million in establishing a specialist center which will be in per austrailia to do all the the thing about the is. It generates ten times the current or it won't generate ten times the current internet traffic of the whole of the internet. And they'll do ten times over. So you need these enormous computing centers to do that. It's very exciting stuff. I'm delighted we could get a chance to talk about it and well well done australia. Let's be waving my flag for the country that is close to my heart closest to my house. I thought that sixty four point four million was going into the fred watson. Retirement fund clearly misinformed. But one thing about this. And i sort of a shadow with with politics but Yeah the the The the politicians are the ones that sort of fly the flag and get the accolades. But you got to give credit to the people that work in those back rooms in canberra in the treasury department budgeting people that that sort of figure all the hat and work at i. We can afford to do this over this period of time through this avenue of funding. And just you know. They work so hard and they never get thanks. Thank you to the invisible people in canada that do all the pen pushing that make all this stuff happened because you deserve to be recognized. I'll be talking to to to the in a teleconference this afternoon. Andrew our on your message. Yep i appreciate you being an administrative person myself. I've done a lot of administration in my lifetime therapeutic. I do honestly finding out. It's good news. It's really good news. And yes i suppose we should just for the sake of it. Refresh people's memories as to what the is role is going to be. What what are we trying to achieve with it so it will it. It's remarkable it's remain is the entire history of the universe. basically because it's the kind of things will be looking at the dark ages that time between the big bang and the first star switching on when the universe has a lotta co hydrogen in it which will be able to not only detect but to map it out to see where it lay and how that formed the universe is growth and then things like the origin of magnetic fields in the universe. That's one of the key key targets of the one that i am very interested in very keen on is that s k will detect very large numbers of pulse. These are neutron stars spinning neutron stars that essentially let us test gravity at very extreme levels neutron stars and black holes the most gravitationally strong objects that we can see. And so what. You're really interested in looking at these objects in detail to see whether relatively still works that these high gravitational intensity levels because relatively is our best theory of stuff in the universe but we know it's got holes in it we know it doesn't completely work so and that is this is one of the things that in fact had in mind. When about two years ago. I went before a committee. A high level political committee which was ratifying the treaty that the square kilometer array the international treaty that. It's going to be built under. And i promise them nobel prizes which might have been a said they had my personal guarantee that this would generate nobel prizes and actually appeared in hansa so it was not a record not entirely throwaway common. Of course at my it can promise anything andrew but not a throwaway comment. Because i believe that if if the if the k reveals insights into the absolute fabric of reality underpins all of relativity and quantum theory and everything and it may well do that will certainly generate nobel prizes so all of the all of the above plus just finally coming right up today. S k can detect an airport. Right our fifty light years so who knows what we might pick up going on in our neighborhood in the in the universe in terms of species well fingers crossed we can. We can be hopeful. Indeed all right. You're listening to and if you're youtube watching the space and that's podcast episode. Two hundred forty nine andrew. Dunkley here with fred watson space nuts. Thanks for listening to space nuts. The podcast about astronomy space science and all sorts of other stuff. Andrew dunkley here with fred watson frail sent you a photo yesterday to be added sunroom and having a just a nas quite one with my wife and it was just sort of past sunset. It was still a bit dusky. And i looked up and there was a half moon to the north due north exactly north of airplanes and i thought gee that you don't see half moons very often like that and it just something about it. Caught my eye note that i say very well but when grabbed my little canon digital camera and it's got forty times optical zoom zoom in and are held it steadier could using the the frame of the door to cape still and snapped a photo and it just came beautifully. Put it on the space space. Nuts podcast group facebook page for people to look at. But you can at the point where you go from light to show. It's just beautifully created in. the camera. Picked up those craters. So vividly i was. I was surprised but also a lot of it was I get lucky sometimes with photographs. Nas what it's a lovely and classic first-quarter image of the moon of course upside down here in this southern hemisphere right way up to us. No it was lovely. And i think as of now you need to rename that room. The moon room rather than the swelled acid on the northern side of the house in winter. And we get the sun comes straight into it because of the angle of the earth and it warms up nicely so we can go in there and get warm in winter and not have to use hating. It's terrific or ought to the saddest story of the year so far on space nuts there will be no warp drive. It's impossible why. why frayed. Yeah well apparently doesn't work so sitting in a nutshell. The story goes back to one thousand nine hundred four to a physicist called me guel could be who essentially formulated. What how you could build a walk drive building. Of course the walk drive that starch used to heads before the drive could be a reality. There was a hypothetical way that used modern physics to to demonstrate this twisting of space. Lets you avoid the university speed limit. So that the speed of course that you can only move through space at a speed of light. That's the maximum. But what drives like the al kabeer one thumb Pronouncing that correctly seek to bend the the re the fabric of space. Put it that way so And he actually got a lot of attention. A lot of quite serious institutions looked to this but the calculations quickly turned out that the problem with it was that you needed more than the entire energy budget of the universe to make it work and that sort of dan confused down abate. But there's been some new research physicist in the usa alexei bob rick and john in monterey from pronouncing the names correctly and they've looked at the drive again and they kind of worked out that even if you could make one it may not allow you to travel faster than light. It may not bend reality in the in the way you want it to. And so that's been a dampener but they've actually the details of this story that the technology that you might use if you could bend space could have other could have other applications of which quite intriguing. I don't really want to go into the details. Because pits find this stuff very hard to describe but one of the one of the proponents has sort of a drill in an analogy here. That sounds like you're tiles being baby stones untrue. They're actually using life at a clear off some of the blow. There's an analogy of saying that. You know what dr is a bit like a car because what you do. Is you bend space around it. You bent twig space in front of it so the crush it all up and spread it out behind it. That's the idea. And so that's that's the theory of the walk guy that you white people thought that you could. You could shortcut the distance because you've compressed the space in front of you. The opposite sides stretching it behind you so compressing space theoretically at least that was the idea would let you cross that space quicker and so you exceed the speed of light but the analogy that's been drawn is a bit like a car because it turns out that just like a car which is a shallow of material and what you do with the what drives you build a shell of of what space around yourself and the space in the middle east okay. It's what we call flat. Space is kind of like the space that we're all sitting in now but you've you've built this shallow around you the warped space but it doesn't actually get you anywhere because the whole thing still moves faster than the speed of light. So that's the bottom line that they've they've they've uncovered it. It however does suggest I mean sorry just going back. There were the key issues with the with the al kabeer device because it needs negative energy which doesn't exist at the moment that was one of the pitfalls with it. Ignificant find it though. It turns out that it doesn't really work. Yeah but but what they've suggested is what these new authors barbara monetary suggested. Is that because you're using the space warping to modify the region of the bit of space that you're in because what you're doing. Is you kind of building a a wall around a piece of flat space. Time a piece of normal space time. You can use the other aspect of relativity time. Dilation you can speed up or slow down time within the what drive so if you well. There's some examples that have been. This is a article. I'm reading here. That actually comes from the conversation so freely available but the author of this has suggested if you wanted if you had somebody with a terminal illness and you but you thought that they could be cured in a few years you put them in salad a warp drive and you slow the clock down. And then they they This sort of stay ill for a short time but that few years number of years that they need for the new cure that passes normally outside the walk drive a. That's the sort of thing that they're talking about you. Could you could do the alternative thing. Here's a suggestion from the same article. Want to grow your crops overnight. Stick them in a walk drive and speed the clock up few days. We're past for you and a few weeks will pass for your ceilings. Yeah it's interesting thought still is still very much in the realm of theoretical physics. But some very nice ideas for for this for this possibility. And i should credit the author of a conversation article that sam baron of the trailing catholic university somebody whose name crops up quite a lot in these sorts of considerations rights. Very well about these really quite difficult issues. I suppose the big problem is even if we come up with a workable theory the energy you need to create. The possibility is is beyond us. Which prompts the question. What can we do at the moment. i know you. And i've spoken about various forms of propulsion using laser to to send miniature spacecraft to other stas but it sounds like travel to the stars in short time through. Wardrobes is not going to happen but there was another discussion. We had about the potential for nuclear power in terms of space travel. That would get you going it. Would it does get you going. And so that's a probably a viable alternative to to the light sales that you just mentioned using lasers to blend into you along with the light so but of course these are still all limited to the speed of light so even if you're going at ninety nine point nine nine nine five percent the speed of light or whatever. It's still going to take you a while. Four and a half years to get to the nearest star. And if you're going out if you're going in that the time dilation effect comes into play your four and a half years trip as seen from earth becomes just a couple of years for you or six months or something like that is really interesting stuff. It's it's it's makes your head spin but it's yeah back that that that twin theory about the The twins dogs one. That's died on the planet and one that a trip back in aged where he's or his brother was fifty years old or something but it actually in theory is is a real possibility as well. It's more than a theory actually works. We know that from the behavior of subatomic particles when they get near the speed of light time slows down for them so we see that. See that happening but sadly for all the star trek fans. There's no walk drive. never probably will be. We're going to have to find something else. Maybe if they get out there with some horticulturalist they can funds worm. Halls what you need right. That's that's probably the the solution often cultural ones now. We don't like to talk dirty on this show. Anyway this is the spice knots. Podcast andrew dunkley with fred watson with space nuts now mentioned patrons earlier on and we thank them again for their support of the spice nuts. Podcast financially if you'd like to become patron go to our website space nuts podcasts dot com and click on the support button and find out how you can become a supporter of the space nets podcast. We're still working on ways to reward our patrons and some new ideas are being tossed. Around as i speak but we are going to to be providing some bonus material in the next little while for our patrons we've been a little bit lax lately. Keeping up with the support of patriots will fix that and thanks again for for supporting us and being a patron. We so much appreciate that. You're willing to put a few bucks in to the kitty. So thank you again now. Fred time to answer some going to hear from the astute and incorrigible rusty from brooke. Who will he can. He can tell you what he's Hoping to ask us this week. I fred manager. It's rusty in donnybrook still hungering for more detail in the big picture and you'll show just fits the bill so well question for the day. What is the great attractor. Where is it and will it affect it. Distant descendant Okay only voice again. You mind if. I have a crack at this one i read. I think you to. The great attractor is the john d. or a superior attracted most others. So there you go failing that's wrong. Well it's better than the less attractive isn't it. Which is the old ferguson. We used to say everywhere. The ferguson my My great uncle was a attractive mechanic. Back in the day and i specialized in massey ferguson's also used to fix my car which he had to do a lot but Yes but that's not the point we wanna find out about the great attractor. What is it where is it yes. So it's two separate words different from the greater tractor. The great attractor. And this is something we've known about. I guess for thirty or forty years now certainly most of my career. I've been aware of this anomaly. Which is basically what it is so it comes about because if you look at i suppose we're talking about relatively nearby galaxies within maybe within a billion light years okay. That's a billion light years long way. But within that region there are lots and lots of galaxies and it it turns out that okay when you observe them observe their velocities. They of course that movement is primarily dictated by the hubble flow. The expansion of the universe and the hubble flow is walked carries galaxies. Faster away from us the further away they are we. We understand that because it's the way the universe behaves so the hubble flow is the first thing that you observe but if you look in detail these galaxies you find. Well they have what we call peculiar. Motions peculiar velocity as we usually call it is It's basically the the velocity superimposed on the hubble flow. If i can put it that way the best way to think of this andrew is the old analogy of a river flowing carrying boats with it but all the boats a rowing away. So they've all got their own motion but that superimposed on top of the flow of the river and that's what peculiar velocities arianespace space so these galaxies all have their own motion which is superimposed on the hubble flow so you understand the hubble flow you can deal with that that's the expansion of the universe but when you've dealt with it you've still got all these peculiar velocities. They've got their individual velocities. And what a suggested. The great attractor is that these peculiar velocities for a very large group of nearby galaxies. All in one direction and the idea is that these velocities result from the fact that the galaxy is being drawn towards something called the great attractor which is a gravitational mass. And it's almost certainly a cluster of galaxies large probably super cluster. Actually but the problem is it's behind the milky way. That's why it's always such an interesting thing to talk about because it's hidden from us by the fact that we are looking at the direction in which it is is behind it in the plane of the milky way so it's not actually that far from the direction of the galactic centre which is such terrorist. Think probably say just where i think. It's in the constellation of norma great attractor which is one of the excuse me one of the milky white plane galactic plane constellations so really really interesting feature of the universe which has been discovered by astronomers carefully observing the velocities of galaxies that peculiar velocities range over quite a large set of values from about seven positive seven hundred kilometers per second to negative seven hundred kilometers per second so range of roundabout fourteen hundred kilometers per second. And it depends on where you are in the sky. As you'd expect. The i think the ones closer to the greatest tra- probably moving faster than the ones away further away. So you can do all these calculations the second part of rusty's question about will it have an effect on our distant descendants. Probably not because we know even. I mean the first thing that's going to happen in this sphere of understanding to are distant descendants. Is they're going to witness the collision between the andromeda galaxy and our galaxy which is four point five billion years away. They are very distant descendants and that will probably it might trigger some local stuff supernova explosions. And if they're nearby there'll be a bad thing but in general it's not going to really be much of a threat to the solar system unless you get nearby supernova which would be so the colliding drawn towards the greatest tractor which we undoubtedly our in our galaxy along with the rest of the local group which includes andromeda the triangular galaxy. The magic cloud all of that stuff. Even even if we've collide with the greatest tractor probably won't make much difference to what's going on in our own galaxy. Of course that's all gotta take a long time and we just assuming that humanity will sort out all its differences and live happily ever after of course around then bus. Yeah failing we might run into fuse snafus before then but hopefully not but thanks rusty guide to voice again. Let's move on to the next question. Hello fred and andrew. This is dealer from toronto canada. I'm a big fan of the show. Well that's the first one. I've heard of been listening since day. One off fantastic. Good on here. I've been meaning to ask a question but of always delighted now. I've got a whole pile of questions stacked in my brain but will spare you an oscar and we know what makes neptune invisible to the naked eye. How do they steer space shuttles in the vacuum of space steering wheel. And what is the universe expanding into thank you. You guys are amazing by far the best video at the cape it up. Stay safe down there down under in australia. Might yes we will thank you What makes neptune invisible to the naked ohi freight you've written about. Neptune have yes money so net net tunes and interesting world. It was the first probably not quite true actually but following the discovery of uranus in seventeen seventy eighty one. I think it was thirteenth of march. Remember rightly seventeen. Eighty one discovery of uranus people observed uranus and realized that it was not behaving in a way. That could be understood if all that you could see in the solar system was that there was something was pulling it gravitationally out of its costs and mathematicians got hold of that and in eighteen forty six. A prediction was made that said look here for neptune. And you'll find it and sure enough. That's what happened. I think he's gal. Was it gala that german astronomer. Who founded cocker should know the details of all. This could have been writing about it but never mind so the that suggests of course that neptune is not visible to the naked eye because otherwise like uranus like saturn jupiter it would have been known to intention times and the reason is. It's so far aways by far. That was the most distant planet in the solar system an object to bit smaller than uranus which is only visible to the naked eye at certain times and very much nearer than neptune. So that's the bottom line is just too far away and too small to visible with the naked eye. Of course he could see with telescope got lots of telescope images of it but not not naked eye visibility. How do they stay space shuttles in the vacuum of space question. A really good question because when we think of aircraft where we think of control surfaces which bite into the air and steer the aircraft around. Do you do it with rosters in fact to use little rocket motors which don't need to push against a lot of people think rockets work by pushing against the the the in the atmosphere but of course they work in the vacuum of space. And it's because the bottom line with the rocket motor is what you've got his essentially a very cool chamber with a hole at one end and if you think of there's basically pressure inside it so the pressure is acting is balanced everywhere in the chamber. The pressure on one side by the pressure on the other side except the side opposite the whole where the rocket exhaust escapes from the nozzle one end. You've got an unbalanced pressure in the opposite direction because the pressure the not not looking at a solid object is not unbalanced pressure forms thrust of the rocket. That's what send it off with his direction of cartoon this under for the kids. Yeah which is one of my favorites in in the books. Explains exactly this why you don't be there to protect against. But he's got a few other little bells and whistles on it as well and finally. What's the universe expanding into big question there and the answer is we don't know i mean the word universe means everything that you can detect or see and so he don't really need to have anything for it to be expanding into because there's nothing else a list in the traditional sense of the universe and so it is expanding we know it expanding doesn't have to be expanding into anything else however in this era of multi-diverse ideas and some people think that maybe it is expanding into a higher dimension. Maybe a fifth dimension or something like that you've got the expansion taking place in and perhaps other universes existing in that time mentioned. But that's all really fairly. It's it's more conjecture than science because we don't have any anything other than people's ideas on this to support the view this there's no observations yet support the idea of either a fifth dimensional high dimensions or multi voices. But i have to say just coming back to something. We talked about a little. While ago with the square kilometer array the idea of new physics popping up out of that is the way we might find out about things like higher dimensional spaces and things of that sort. So that's why this is also exciting. Maybe one day we'll be able to answer the question with yes. The universe is expanding into fifth. Fifth dimensional trickle or something like that given unto but we counted the movement now I got the feeling. We're on the cusp of great discovery is just because the various advances in technology and the equipment that we can never create an capabilities. We have to put things in certain places in space or on earth to to look better at. They're not to look better but to look better. We we may will. We look better. We will be able to start sort of pacing together more information that will ultimately answer the question that i think we're gonna have a light bulb moment until we wrought on top of it. Yes i think. We're going to chip away at. They stings until one day we go. Oh well that makes sense. It's blow monge but until then it will be a slow steady race requiring much. Patience is my theory but don dailey. Thanks for your questions. That were good. I actually didn't really think much about movement of space shuttles. tell you explained. Just thought turned the on a goes. He does the Yes thank you for your question. Take you rusty and thank you. Everybody now. Next week is episode. Two hundred and fifty. No my two hundred fifty and now that we've surpassed a million dollars what we want. Everyone to do between now and next week is listened to every episode over again until you catch up to today's and then next week we can post two million something. Don't worry about that. But two hundred fifty. So we're going to dedicate old questions free. Yeah i think we should sort of become a thing on round. hasn't it has become a thing and two hundred and fifty goodness we will be answering two hundred and fifty questions next week Or maybe eight or ten. If we're lucky but plays if you have a question you can go to our website. Spice nuts podcast dot com. Click on that little tab up the top And you can. You can have a mile a question to us or you can record one if you've got a device with a microphone. It's as simple as that and don't forget to tell us who you are away from. Where the texting all voice questioning us. We would love to hear your voices of course but we take we take questions of all kinds even the mild ones so yes next week. Two hundred fifty and boy hasn't that blows my mind when we started. We thought we get two point five episodes in but we two hundred nearly two hundred fifty awesome stuff. But that's where we leave it for another week. Fred thank you so much for your insightful. Comments knowledge and intelligence and for sharing it all with us. We appreciate it. It's a great pleasure. Always good and looking forward to the next time indeed. So you then. Fred watson astronomer large part of the team here on the space podcast. Hello to you in the studio who puts it all together with rubber bands and sticky type and from may andrew. Thank you again. And we will catch you on the very next episode of spicer nuts by used to this available at apple. Podcasts google podcasts. Spotify radio all your favorite podcast. You can also stream on demand at god still. This has been another gas. Production from thoughts dot com.
It's Here and Andrew's Excited!
"The fifteen seconds guidance been journal and nine technician sequence spence nets three to four or five space nuts. Bill good who once again. Thanks for joining us. This is the space knots. Podcast episode two hundred and fifty two good grief. My name's andrew dunkley your host joining me again and as always is professor fred watson astronomer. Large red eye andrew. How you doing. I am fine thank you. I'm very well. Thank you good news with a paper out and things of that so oh yes yes. I finally finished the entire process of getting. The book organized the type settings done a spellcheck has done the whole proof reading processes over. I think it's been proof. Read three times and then we got it up to the publisher. We got the cover. Everything's ready and it will be released on. May the thirty first in paperback. This is the hitler paradox and will available now if you want to download the book now. But you're gonna love this fred but we got everything. Done everything checked and yesterday. I just thought. I'll just see what's going on. It's it's popped up on amazon. In less than twenty four hours of being sent to my distributor extraordinary it usually takes a wall. Let's austrailia and in at amazon dot com. And i thought. I'll just have a quick look and say how it all sort of came up on on the interface and reading. I think there's there's a spelling error in the very first center. Never saw it never saw now once or it. I can't be bothered fixing cost me twenty five dollars to fix one letter. I'm not gonna worry about it but it's out there. It's got rather a striking cover. And again i say thanks to my brother. Stave for coming up with the concept. It is Miss it. It's it's it's quite in your face. But that's what i wanted. Because this is a story that centers around three three or four years. It's it's going to go all over the place in terms of time. Yes it is time travel story but the basis is that in the twenty two hundreds time travel is a reality. The united nations of the twenty to thirty in which is where the story starts has decided that We're gonna use this machine to right. The wrongs of history. And the first thing i want to fix is the greatest travesty humanity in that he's the holocaust and i decided the only way to do that is to kill hitler before he became a somebody and of course they file and when they file. It awakens new and more horrifying enemy. And that's basically the story. It's a race against time between what the people of the twenty two hundred are doing against the enemy that is in the future and they have to deal with it in the past. So that's how it all turns out and fred. Last week. I read a post. Because i did sort of preemptive a notice on facebook that the book was soon to be released and someone said are great cow white to heed to read the twist in this one thought in better think of one arabia the in good. So it's it's out there. It's ready to roll. Have look for the hitler paradox. you'll find it. It'll start to pop up in more and more places will be nola regulate bookshops online and ultimately in bookstores. But yeah let me know what you think. And yes i do plan to put an audio version of just get around to recording it. It's a big job and lot of hard work. And i hate editing. Which is why like podcasting. Because we don't worry about that kind of thing. We thought that aside. Let's talk about today's show and we talk about that. We've been talking about mars or latin. The the rover that nasr's put their perseverance in the ingenuity helicopter. But now it's china's turn they're about to land probe on mars and send out their own rovira so we talk about that. A new form of aurora has been discovered. They just happened a few times. Recently fred in discussions they found this all dotted. That were reviewing and went. Oh hang on a minute. What's all this then. And a new form of aurora and proof that life related molecules can form in the cold dark vacuum of space. We'll look into that and audience questions from doug in ontario and sandy in victoria which we will get to a little lighter in the program but I fred. Notwithstanding the achievements of perseverance and ingenuity and nasa china is has been orbiting mars from about the same time bit earlier than the nasa was there in this case and now they are ready to to land on the martian surface. And if they do they will achieve history because the only two nations russia and the united states have achieved that. That's correct here. The so the story goes back and we covered all this back in february when Ten win one became the second of the actually. We covered it last july. Wearing one became the second of the three space probes that were launched to mars back in july. The third was perseverance. Perseverance of course in february went straight into rea- into entering maladies atmosphere. It didn't going to beat. It was meant as a straightforward so the seven minutes of terror. We're right at the end of that long voyage but everything went perfectly well and we've got of course as we all know we've got helicopter and rover on the surface however the when one probe and by the way ten when means questions to heaven. Oh maybe quest quest for heavenly truth. That's another way of putting a nice name comes comes along. One of the great works of chinese literature so ten one has on board its own lander and the plan was always to orbit the planet for three or four months. Just to make sure that everything's working and also to select suitable landing site because the orbiter has cameras on board and all the rest of it. So that's that was always expected to be may may now and the thinking is that within the next couple of weeks. Perhaps we'll see news of the lander going down to the surface. I think after just a few days it will. it will unload the rover. The rover itself is called jurong. If that's how you pronounce it. It's named after an ancient fire guard in chinese mythology as they're all great named so as you're on a little six wheeled rover. It looks a lot like. Excuse me the sojourner rover that nasa put on the surface of mars in nineteen ninety seven. I think if i remember rightly six wheels couple of large solar panels on it to to give it power and festooned of course as always with with a scientific equipment including one. That's never been sent to the surface of mars before that is a magnetometer mas not having a global magnetic field his It's never we've never had something on the surface that can that can measure the magnetic field but there is probably evidence locked up in rocks of mars of mars ancient agnostic field if indeed it had one and jaren will be one of the a perhaps one of the milestones in our understanding of the planet mars if it if it manages to measure magnetic field and tell us a little bit about the magnetic history of the planet great stuff. Yeah i think the other thing they Also looking into what happened. What not just the magnetic failed but the planet is a hall what what went wrong way to win at everything go why is it so. Why is it so desolate. Yeah that's a lot of those questions have been answered already into in terms of our understanding. That's come from orbiters and landers on the surface but there are still many many details that we don't understand one of them. Is we all kind of believe that it's likely that stage in history. The northern hemisphere was covered with water. Which is why. It's flattened almost featureless now compared with the southern hemisphere and we don't know whether that was an ocean that lasted for tens of millions of years or whether it was just water that was relatively shallow only lasted a short time or even whether it was a lake underneath a cap on it may mars may never have been the balmy warm and pleasant place that we think it might lean and certainly that the earth is may have had had an ice cap with water underneath it so perhaps some of those answers will come from jurong. It's got the usual other stuff as well as analytical equipment to look at rocks and things of that sort it's not that far from perseverance. Although certainly not within traveling distance these things only do a few kilometres but in the same hemisphere and in a similar region but perseverance is much more interesting spot from the point of view trying to detect evidence of past life on mars. Jesuit good looks like the entire area is popular because when you when you look at the published a map on one of the websites looking at that shows where all the land is have. Put down on mars In all the time we've been going there and you got perseverance. You got Zhengrong viking to bagel to incite curiosity and not far away spirit. They're all in that kind of victor anti there. Yes that's right. It's a region of mazda surface that is called utopia pleasure and it. It's actually probably a giant impact crater from mars really early history but that's a region that's thought to be of geological interest on on the planet. And that's why this is exactly as you said this. Cluster of when you look on the map of where things have been sent to land including the ones that didn't quite make it. There's a cluster of the miranda it very true giant impact crater so we guide to find dinosaur bones. A doesn't matter what kind of bone it was a bone base and say would be incredible. But we'll have to wait and see but yes so who else is around there at the moment. Let's just slipped my mind briefly in terms of opening mars. Oh there's an indian spacecraft that's his of course hope the uae spacecraft chen wen one three of this mars reconnaissance orbiter There is x. Omar's amass the european one. That's five and the other one is called a marvin marvin the sprite. And that's just right. Pro six of them. Yeah almost getting his polluted around. Mars trump. That's a good point because there are inactive satellites as well very ones that were active in the early years of the millennium including some the names. I've left one out in fact because mas express the european he's one is there is still active so that we're up to seven think but the incredible and to think your going back fifty years or so. We were still trying to figure it all atten here. We are sort of waiting around mas lock. It's like had traffic so so fingers crossed for zero for the seven minutes of time that that spacecraft also have to experience to get down onto the surface of mars. Well they prove they can put a rocket back on earth. I mean you know they did. Did that end up landing in the indian ocean. It was the mold. Eve i lost. Were the nearest land for where it where it landed yet. But i've not seen any vision of it. I i suspect it was somewhere where there were no ships and no you know no nearby land and of course. It was a daytime. When that happened treatment been small hours of the morning it was it was an it was obviously certainly not seen any footage of any kind now which is probably a good thing. I mean you don't want something like that. Landing in a populated area is given the planet surfaces. What seventy percent water. The odds are pretty good that it would miss stranger. Things have happened idea. okay we will watch of course with interest the chinese mission on mars with huirong and we'll hopefully get some data from them real soon and be able to tell you what they've what they've found. This is the space nats. podcast andrew. Dunkley here with professor. Fred watson space matz just what to say hello to our patrons the people who put the money into the space and that's podcast voluntarily and we thank you very kindly for your generosity and your support of the space nuts podcast and if you would like to become a patron. It's as simple as going to our website and clicking on the supporter button. And all the information you need to know whether you want to do it through on or super cast off through pay pal as a one off donation. It is certainly entirely up to you as we reminding you. It's voluntary but we want to ultimately become a one hundred percent reliant on our audience. So do that. We're going to need somewhere around a thousand patrons so we're slowly building those numbers up so thank you. If you've chosen to support us in some small why and it's not expensive but all the information you need is on our website. Just click on the supporter button to find out more at the other way you can support us of course is through the space and that's shop brand. New book has popped up there this week. Strangely enough as well as many other publications from from our Colleagues within the space nuts. Fraternity one fred watson and there are a couple of as well so check them out and of course olaya space nuts memorabilia as well on the space now shop. That's on our website space nuts. Podcast dot com now fred. Let's move onto the next topic. And scientists have discovered a new phenomenon to aurora something that they didn't know existed and this has been dug up in in some old evidence from all video. What makes me laugh is. They're referring to this This video it's two thousand and two. I can't get it through my head. That stuff from two thousand and two is now considered hold narratives. That's where the video look as part of history. It's anti stuff is this now. It is no right but it is remarkable that the that we're still learning things about the aurora the the apart partly andrew. It's due to the fact that we have the technology. Now we've got modern modern digital cameras that people can set up and do marvelous footage of auroral displays. And we say those all the time if you look in that kind of thing which i do but also the other thing. Is that like me as you know. Many tours up to the northern arctic to to look at the aurora. And i think that's become much more of a commonplace thing so a lot more people are going to see the aurora borealis. In the north a lot more people go down to tasmania to see the aurora australis in the south and so more people are watching these phenomena. Yes and i'll tell you something. Read one of my in partners. Darren who i play with. Every saturday took a one of those qantas flights to nowhere resume. Yep and it took them down to antactica and got to say the aurora astrology. Very good while of lying. Dan consequence of covid nineteen. Here's the airlines have been hit so hot. Due to travel bans they've had to diversify and so airlines in a stroller of being doing these flights to nowhere. So they were the air for something like ten hours to fly down. There have a look around and then fly back which is rather extraordinary. But that's a side note but aurora australis but it reflects the popularity of hunting which used to be something that you only read about in books and you and i've talked about some of the new phenomena that have been introduced those one not long ago which were ripley aurora and then there were the staves as well. I don't know whether you remember. The which is now is is being a phenomenon related to aurora. But not russia. Same thing so we've now got a new something quite new which comes from this old footage. As you've said this work. This research has come from scientists at the university of calgary university of iowa to They the phenomenon is that i like many aurora which which form curtains. And that's exactly what they look like in the sky or stream as across the sky or sometimes the best ones are what corcoran were thing exploded above. Your head is an extraordinary experience standing underneath something doing that but there is another well. It's a well known auroral phenomenon and that is what's called the diffuse auroral glow and it's basically an aurora is green but spread fairly evenly across the skies. Not it's not in. These streamers and things new phenomenon is that this footage revealed that within the diffuse close if imagine this green glow over a large area of the sky and suddenly a small chunk of it brightens up and stays bright for a few minutes. And then it disappears but where it was leaves a hole in the diffuse auroral glow. It's just black underneath. It's almost as though it's rubbed it out. And that's why they're being called what they're calling them to diffuse auroral diffuse auroral erasers. Because it's just like losing an eraser to to rubber out the background aurora and basically. It's a mystery. The the these scientists who are well versed in the field of aurora studies. Have no idea what's causing them. A one of the astronomers at the university of iowa says it raises the question these common phenomenon that has been overlooked. Are they rare. Knowing the exist means there is a process that is creating them and it may be a process. We haven't started to look out yet because we never knew they were happening until now. So yeah it's great stuff and learning something else about on our own planet. In fact the rest of the universe is finding out what's going on up here so so we know what causes aurorae but obviously there are varying types. Sometimes we don't understand why certain things are happening to them. Exactly the the. The the the the mechanisms of of the aurora even just the straight-forward aurora that we understand is fairly complex. He goes back understanding of it. Goes back to the turn of the twentieth century when christiaan bickel owned a well-known norwegian scientists who is a big hero of mine. He spent the whole winter of a mountain. Which i've been very close to the altar in northern norway. This mountains called holiday. He wanted out over there with a couple of colleagues one of whom didn't survive because of the winters are pretty serious up there but he was. He was the first to sort of really show that the aurora don't doesn't touch the ground because before that people didn't know whether these dancing lights actually start at the ground level and he also worked out that it was electrons from the sun. That actually did the trick and but it was fifty years before anybody believed him or fifty after his so yet we're still learning and i think this is one to watch. We might talk about this again. Andrew okay cape oil and that one. Let's now talk about the that. Life related molecules can form in the vacuum of space. This is a new discovery as well. It's a bit more subtle than that. Because we've known for a long time that these molecules form in in the cold dark clouds that aware solar system start john clouds and so the particular question is is methanol for nerdy c. h. h sometimes known as alcohol. It's what they call it when i was at school. A methanol is certainly a precursor for life. We have methanol methanol in our bodies. Actually the the the constituent of amino acids and hence proteins things of that sort. So but it where it's been observed too far has always been in cold places and cold is what you need for molecules to form because warming them up inside a staffer. Example tends to shake but individual atoms apart. And you don't see them. So we've we've known time we see in comets as well which as you know. I see bodies but the new discovery which comes from alma our alma the atacama large millimeter submillimeter array up in the chilean andes This is work. that's how it should be done too late in university leiden in the netherlands. the The the the the work is and this is what makes it different that they've observed a warm region around a star. And it's what's called a protoplanetary disk way you've got you've got swirling dust and gas out of which planets are forming. Our solar system. Looked like this four point. Six billion years ago and we observed elsewhere in space so they've they've observed one of these warm planet forming disks but what they've found in is methanol and apparently methanol cannot form in this sort of warm environment and so what they're saying is the methanol has was actually formed somewhere else. And that's not a surprise because that's where the the places that we see these called clouds but the fact that it has found its way into a warm disc of gas around a star is what the quoting they're saying it could give the development of life a flying star because they're already sort of in the law material that these planets might be made of and so. Yeah that's why the the a lot of interest in this in this story. It's i think it. It's basically burned these researchers on to look in even more detail in this protoplanetary disk. Because they're they're hoping that they might find other oxygen containing organic molecules like die. Might the'll sorry. Di di method liter. Say some of these miguel. four may turn acidy. These are all chemicals that once again there that they say they're key ingredients for pre biotic chemistry so really interesting stuff going on in our understanding of the these young solar systems and what they might contain. So this would be another clue into how life might evolve in in a system as for example in the early days when we were. You know just being mashed together coming out of those cold climates of the universe and started to warm up we already received the raw materials we needed to create life. Is that what this is suggesting. That's right exactly. Excuse me the raw materials from a very early stage in the formation of solar system. Not yeah that's interesting stuff. Yeah see i told you i knew. I've said all along that. I believe that they stuff of life exists everywhere and just a case of the environment being exactly right to make it flourish otherwise it just floods around out there being useless to itself the theory of pre baltic chemistry which is a good one. Dumbed it down real good. Well it helps me. This is the space that's podcast enter. And of course. Fred watson space mutts now hello to social media followers who many space nuts podcast group on. Facebook is one such page that you can join. It's for people who are space nuts followers who wanna talk to each other. It's run by the listeners themselves so if you will like to join the eighteen hundred plus people who are already members of the space nats podcast group that we just do a search in your facebook search engine for space and that's podcast group because there's an official space and that's podcast facebook pages well which show you can also follow or you can follow us on youtube we We have a presence there and you can not only listen but watch if you really want to do that. Why would you wanna look at us. I don't know but anyway that that's an option and plenty of other places that you can find is so close. We got our website which i mentioned earlier as well so the plenty of places to find us and as far as the podcast platforms are concerned. We're on everything. So whatever platform you use. You'll love you probably find the space podcast there as well. Now fred. we have some questions to tackle the first one is in text form. This comes from doug hygienic. This is doug how bad that. I got it right from whitby ontario canada. Thanks very much for the show. It's been great for helping. Montana maintain our relative sanity in the last year. Or so you can understand that particularly enjoy listening during long walks with my dog hazel. Your show is just the right length and of course. The content is very informative. My question is if dark matter is say four to five times more prevalent than regular matter in the universe and only interacts by gravity. Why doesn't it seem to have any effect on spacecraft navigation within the solar system if it's clumpy elsewhere or mostly found in collective galactic halos. Thanks very much. Look forward to hearing your answer. thank you doug. We don't get doc questions. Very often. Tread do we. The fact of the matter is that this is such a big mystery. Table keep thinking of angles and in regard to what could be going on and obviously doug sort of something that doesn't stack up and that's half the problem with this doesn't stack up in fact what we understand to be happening is exactly what doug says that it's it's only clumpy on very very large scale so if you think of that being a background in the solar system of this dark matter whatever it is these these subatomic particles whose identity is unknown an omi- reveals itself by the gravitational fact that it has on the bodies if you if you imagined that spread perfectly evenly throughout the solar system. Then you're not going to know it's there from looking at the way spacecraft behave from looking at the way planet behave ties in completely with every t crossed in every dotted with the both newtonian and higher gravitational densities einsteinian relativistic gravitational mechanics. All worked perfectly. fits perfectly. That's why we haven't discovered this stuff by just looking in the solar system so we sit probably within a very very uniform cloud of dark matter and he's only again as doug mentions when you get to the scale of the guy the hallows of galaxies the you can start to see its distribution. Excuse me now involve a few years ago with some work. You might remember used to be the project manager for the rape survey ready of the experiment. Which is something that looked for measuring the velocities of stars as well as their chemical compositions and things like that. We did half a million stars in the end. It's brought to an end. Noah finished in two thousand thirteen but One of the things that came out of that was the estimate that clumps of matter can't be any smaller than about a thousand light years across and that's partly from the kind of things that we've been talking about now that the way. The dynamics of stars operates so that is not. It's not a firm answer but thousand years was for a while being tossed around as the minimum size of blood of dark matter and of course our solar system scalise measuring light minutes. so it's it's much much smaller scale. So i think exactly. Doug says that's the answer that we we only see when we look on the scar on the scale of galaxies. The fact that galaxies have the galaxies are probably immersed in these large halos of dark matter which might be lumpy on a scale of thousand light years. Or so that is. That's what holds galaxies together. Point it was gonna make because one of the reasons why we think that matches there is a galaxies. don't rip themselves apart as they rotate. So the dark matter halo is what holds them together the might be clumps within that as said probably no bigger no smaller though than a thousand light years. They may even be much bigger than that. We really don't know too. Well yeah do you think we'll ever crack. It will be a lot. Bob moment or should i say a black light moment dog light moment. Yes i think there will it. You know there are two ways. This could go one as that. The somewhere some physics experiment and there are ones weather. A hint of this is highly disputed. Some physics experiment turns up something that says well. The standard model doesn't account for this particle physics. There must be something else and that leads to an opening where people start looking at energies in the in the particle physics spectrum. Where there might be something you may well needling bigger and better than the than the large hadron collider because these whatever. These particles are massive there that they must've outweigh normal particles by five to one. Is doug size. So the that's one possibility that we might find a cracking our knowledge of physics which opens up a new line of research and then at the end of that rub it. all there is flunk. Oh here it is last. We found the maxium neutrally news or whatever they are that constitute matter or the other thing that might happen is and people are still looking at this. You know we might have been barking up the wrong tree altogether. The mom theory modified newtonian dynamics which was proposed back in the nineteen eighties bimodal milligram. I think tel aviv. Or one of those israeli universities he postulated that our understanding of mechanics is wrong that a force equals mass times. Acceleration doesn't work a large girls. There's a difference in there and unfortunately there are all kinds of chinks in the month theory. Which is why. It's not widely accepted although no at least one podcast listener. Who's doing a on this high peter. So the the the may well be something that opens up says. Yeah we just got it completely wrong. And he should realize that scientists are open to that mo- scientists think it is a particle but if some really strong piece of evidence came up the scientific opinion shift and suddenly we might be looking at you know new forms of acceleration things that don't work in the way that we think they do. So i'm sure we'll crack andrew whether whether space knows will still be going when we do. I don't know well. I hope so too. I have a personal message. It's done to you. Peter no pressure down to not pressure pressured to vote. Give shout out. To former technician siding spring observatory now. Doing the modified newtonian physics. Well it's a good thing that science and scientists and astronomers in particle physicists off flexible because if we weren't we'd still be making tools at a stone imagine because we wouldn't change their minds about anything that's right all right. I appreciate the question thank you. Doug wasn't tugging on terrier. Let's now go to sandy in victoria. Who's got a question. Which on the surface might send comes from the very center of the planet geek them but it's quite interesting hydrant fred. It said he from victoria gain. Thank you for answering my last question. Well though i didn't explain a well understood trying to say in answer the question so thank you too many questions. I have an interesting telescopes semester. Photography and my question is related to telescope mounts. Jim and equatorial man. History professor favored by many hobie. Photography's have a winner was rating about a few of the large professional telescopes. Like the veil. Tae they all say to sit on top of mount. Why is that is simply today. Signs thank you. Oh yes there was more. Thank you sandy. And the answer is yes. And that's all we have this week. It is the answer is yes. It is so but look. We shouldn't pick this a little bit for people things talk about so when you when you have a telescope looking at the sky normally in the lower price range of telescopes although that's changed quite a lot but let me put it this way. You mounted them on. What's called zenith. Mount often shot into an tells us as saudi says. So what does that do well it. Just lets you move the telescope up and down or side to side. It's like a theod light so know the two axes one is vertical and horizontal. It's as simple as that and that's great. I mean it's very very convenient when it's well made but for the most basic kinds of telescopes it means that when you try and track an object through the sky you're basically moving in steps and i've spent many hours with groups of people looking through an all tells him must telescope and what you have to do is look through the peace and say. Oh that's fantastic. The next person comes in house looks as anything. And it's because the objects moved because the earth's rotating and so then you go to fiddle around with the steps and it was a long time. Is i think the first what's called. An equatorial mounting goes back to christoph. Scheiner who was a contemporary of galileo's in seventeen century and if you mount telescope if you build a mounting so that instead of one of the axes being vertical it's tilted over the angle of latitude where you are then. It becomes parallel to the earth's axis. And you've got this really neat trick that as the throw tastes the nayef you hold you've got to do is rotate your telescope about these access. And it follows the stars perfectly. That's called an equatorial mounting. And if you've got the behind version of that then you have a what's called a clock drive even though these days of electric motor that drives it so that it exactly matches the earth's rotation and the field of view is stationary. And that's what you need for photography of course because you're a exposures might last three four ten fifteen or in our case in the old days of photography sixty minutes and you want to be able to track without the telescope. Having to be moved now things have changed in the modern era. Let me just mention though that until the nineteen eighties. All big telescopes were built. Actually the nineteen seventies probably by way to put it all big. Telescopes were bill on an equatorial mounting. That means one with this axis tilted over. That's why the anglo-australian telescope where i used to work for mounting. But the whole thing's tilted over at this curious angle of thirty thirty one degrees or thereabouts. Which is the latitude. Angle siding spring. It was only in the seventy s and actually the russians pioneered this with their large telescope in where it is zelin took sky. That's the name of the place. They pioneered this because computers could suddenly do this. If an tells him is much easier to build the everything's vertical. You've got one vertical axis the whole thing's not tilted over at some funny angle and that makes the mechanics of the much more straightforward from a structural point of view. So once computers got the stage where they could work out where you have to go with l. tells you must telescope one that goes up and down inside decide and then you could do it in tiny little steps so that the whole thing looks just following the stars. And that's how big telescopes are built. Now it purely a size concentration. We have the computer technology to do it and and makes the mechanics much easier. Now that has also spread downwards to the amateur field so a lot of monday telescopes on a computer controlled. I'll tell him of mount. Many many of them are so. Why don't we use that for photography. Why do people like the equatorial mount better. A the answer. Is that if you're doing photography with an tells him with telescope even though it's got swish computer control you've got a problem in the field of view seems to rotate and that doesn't happen with an equatorial so your stars yet tracking on the stars tracking on the center of the field of view but the field is actually rotating very slowly around that. If you didn't do anything about it you get lovely pictures with all the stars as little curves sente- around the center so that's why in small telescopes. The equatorial mounts is still preferred sounded mentioned the german equatorial mount. That's a particular name for one that has a counterweight balancing the weight of the telescope and it was invented by joseph found offer back in eighteen o eight or thereabouts. The great door pat refractory which is a beautiful old telescope. That i've seen it's in estonia. That was the first of these mountings. And because it was built by german scientists in munich. In fact it's called a german equatorial the most common form. So that's the bottom line is with all this big telescopes use computers smaller telescopes can. But you've got to work out how to rotate the field of view. It's easy to use. German equatorial photography answered and or asked and answered sandy as and great question. And something a little bit different for us to tackle this week because we we certainly like to tackle questions from all kinds of angles and that one had a lot of angles in it already. But thanks again. Sandy thanks doug for sending in your questions greatly appreciated and of course if you have questions for us you can send them to us for at websites. Space nuts podcasts. Dot com and click on the link at the top of the screen. And that's where you'll find out email interface week and do the old fashioned mail thing and type questioning with a keyboard or you can Use a record. If you've got a device with a Microphone built in like my phone or a computer or a tablet or something like that you can just click on the record button and say hi. I'm fred from sydney. And i want to know the name of andrew's new book and where i can buy it. We will broadcast that question to the entire globe over and over again. But now that's how you do it. Just click on the tab and you can send us your questionnaire in whatever form you so desire we look forward to hearing from you and that brings us to the end fred and thank you again as always by the way. There's a new book available. I'll stop the thanks for it. It's been fun as always real till next week. And i look forward to it very much. Andrew his by fred. What's an astronomer lodge here on space. And that's thanks to here in the studio for pushing all the buttons and sending at all the the notifications and putting the whole thing together with sticky tape and plastic and sometimes superglue which is probably going to be required today for me andrew dunkley. Thanks again for listening and or watching. We'll catch you on the next episode of space nuts to this podcast available at apple. Podcasts google podcasts. Spotify radio all your favorite podcast. You can also stream on demand. God stuff this is another quality podcast. Production from thoughts dot com.
Life On Venus?
"Love this podcast support this show through the ACOSS support a feature. It's up to you how much give and there's no regular commitment. Just hit the link in the show description to support now. Fifteen seconds guided journal. Nine ignition sequence uh space nuts. Three To Our. report it feels good. Hello. Once again, thank you for joining us. This is the space knots podcast episode two hundred and Twenty Names Andrew Co host joining me as always is professor Fred Watson Astronomer Lodge, afraid Andrew. How're you doing today? I'm pretty excited this wait for it. Really did you H- Golf Bolo Did that very well, but Maya audiobook has has been released as of as of yesterday. Very good. Austin. The the terrain Ian Enigma is now available as an audio book, download it from your favorite audiobook distributor, and now it's on Google and now it's on Apple. It's not quite on audible, but it will be they stumm. They're a bit slower than the rest to get get the ducks lined up and I think in all. There are forty three audiobook distributors that a guy to carry it. So. That's very exciting. Now, getting the would out if you because this is this is by yet demand people asking to get an audio copy so I decided or on old it and runs. Five hours. Yeah. Five hour listening. Is the one that? When you play voice very similar to the one on talking to now. Would Bay. Sometimes. It went sound like because I go into character. Rather than just right right. So I haven't been I like the sound of the. This is fantastic. Well done. Liking up voices very difficult I might add. That's right a couple of times, bizarre? Anyway. It's Ole ready to roll. So if you're if you're interested, you can you can download it today. Fred coming up. We're going to be answering audience questions almost exclusively today although there's one story that's hit the headlines this week that we can't not do. FEM accent but. WE'RE GONNA look at the use of lies in spice in some of the issues facing that particular situation measuring distance in spice why we use terms like plastic. Relied sickened or things along those lines. A couple of questions about Venus One is obviously focused on the potential life on Venus, which is hit the news this week. So we'll talk about that but there's also a mission headed Tamaz the Venus? I should say wanted to discuss and we we talked about the journey of light from the center of the Sun recently somebody's brought that one back to to us. So have a crack at that and the effect of Binary Stars on planets. So why plenty to do today it's a jam packed program I must say but Fred let's get straight into it with our first question from Evan. In Sydney. This, even from Sydney Australia. Recently I talked about astronomers using lices, for adaptive optics. Rumor. The US astronomers had to get permission from US spy agencies before turning on their laser for fear of blinding spy satellites. Is this room a true. What would they do to ability to shed? You'll talk on the telescope. What happens for sudden events like a Supernova role and neutrons stack lesion Does this affect astronomers in Australia? And Do Australian astronomers need to get permission not just from spy agencies in the Yusei but also in Russia and China. Hey I really enjoy the show space Nazis I on what put costliest. Thank you. That's lovely and offer to you. It really Aloe. Started about my audiobook. Probably here we. Now, Evans brought up some interesting issues and little bit of clouds and dagger in there as well lies in spice spy agencies permission. What's that about? So the technology that we're talking about here is the use of late. What lies a guide straws? And it's all to do with the elimination of the distortion to star image is caused by the atmosphere. And the technical technology of adaptive optics lets you sense the distorting effect of the atmosphere. And a compensate for it by using flexible mirrors. The nicest demonstration of this is one that can't do because she's needs a visual age a visual light, but if you get a sheet of paper. And look at it, hold it up. That is what the way front of the light from a star looks like it's crossing space. And if you then take your piece of paper, screw it up. Flatly tells again, that's what it looks like. It's coming through the atmosphere. It's very, Very Ari gold. The difference between the bid a paper in the atmosphere is that the crackling exchanging one thousand times a second atmosphere whereas on the paper if just one one sort of snapshot and that's what adaptive optics is trying to do to use flexible mirrors that can essentially reproduce that crinkled way foil. And and restore it to the perfection of what it would have been like coming to expes an the technology is actually moved on enormously in the last decade or so until a number of telescopes use this technique, none of them are in Australia. That's maybe not quite true because there is. There is an opposite of the tree of monstrum low observatory in camera a have A. Basically a satellite station on the same site which is operated by ers electrical systems who do use lays a lasers for. Basically. Satellite ranging. May well be that they have adaptive optics systems built into that, but they're looking very much at you know things in Near. Rather than. Rather than distant objects of let me. Change that and say for astronomy their unused in. Australia because. Our atmosphere in Australia is not really good enough. To to to eliminate the crippling wave front. By doubted optics. I did some experiments with the Montreal Johnny Byrne Professor at Sydney University. This is Mrs Twenty five years ago we did these. With the anglo-australian telescope? To to look at the possibilities of using adaptive optics on that telescope and we did experiments called Lyda away you use a laser to. Measure the turbulence in atmosphere different heights. Brilliant. So Excuse me we weren't using. We weren't using the best observing time, but there were there were. Multiple lands of. Turbulence above US above the mountain top that mountainous full thousand feet high. About eleven hundred meters. You need to be much higher than that to get rid of some of these turbulent leads and sewing, Hawaiian Chile. That they are the main places where that. Adaptive optics used any particular why's guide stars are used? Why do you need a laser? Well? In order to make adaptive optics work, you've got to build a sense. What the way from doing and you do that by looking at what's called a guide style. And E can do with you know with real styles if you've got a star which is near the object of interest and it's got to be fairly bright that's the the downside. If, you've got that star then you can use that to sense the way front and that that basically will correct the whole image. So the object that you're interested in which is next door to the stuff. That will be corrected to, but often there isn't a bright enough star near your objective interest and that is why. These. Scientists generating artificial star using a laser. Typically to sodium atoms at about ninety kilometers above the earth. Now the question that I haven't made was a basically about the you know the problem of hitting something by mistake. On I am sure about the the the US I I think he's right that there are times when you cannot use the laser guide. Star systems in Hawaii. And that is possibly because of. Because of US government's use of space. For reasons that we might not be told about I. Think they get periods when that prohibited. That is. It's more than a rumor I've heard this from some of the scientists involved. It's more especially the case that you want to avoid. Aircraft going through the bane nuts multi game situation. and. So certainly, the laser guide stars that the. European Southern Observatory uses on the very large telescope down in Chile. They have aircraft avoidance systems I. Think they have senses that maybe write I'm not sure exactly how it works, but they shut down the lasers. With an automated aircraft avoidance system when an aircraft is near the beams I suspect. What effect would. That have on an aircraft it. It's not powerful enough to. Penetrate the skin or anything like that. But clearly, it is not the sort of thing that you want pilots of aircraft to dock adopted in that cockpit with. A blinding light hitting their craft and of course, reflecting off all the. All the all the surfaces. Shiny surfaces of the aircraft which then find his the carpet. So the last thing you want to do is point Elisa at an aeroplane people sometimes do it and get arrested shortly afterwards. So yes. So you do have to be very careful about it. Said straddling observatories don't use that because we don't have the atmospheric conditions that are good enough to to make laser gun styles with while. He's also asked about sudden events like supernovae. Neutron Star collision things like that. Yes Oh. So if you have A. Not Quite, sure what what he's getting out there because we. We. Supernova want you want to see is the SUPERNOVA. You don't wear one of those is going to go off and so that's very much the you know the the. It will be the target of opportunity if a if a Supernova in your field of view you be delighted. Neutral collisions. Rare enough events. That I and also in deep space. So the usually the the light we get from these fairly weak. But these what you might call transient events. Telescope specifically looking for transient events and they are going to be very important in the future we think the the transient universe. Popping off. Getting Bryce in faint again quickly, Light Australia I wish you and I've talked about many times The Transient Universe is very much future strawberries something we've been getting used to over the last decade. IT'S A. Strong as the transient universe now also includes satellite constellations as well which you have to deal with For sure. All right. Evan. Thanks for your question. Hopefully, we filled in some of the blanks and we appreciate support Thanks again, freight. Let's move onto the next question we donahue this is from came in text form. Hi Andrew Hi Fred Astronomy enthusiasts use light years to express distance but professional astronomers used past six one in vented in the Early Twentieth Century the Pasig was at the center of Popular Research is that still the case or is this just an historical tradition? It seems the past sick is very earth centric. Would be meaningless to non by distraught him as of which I hope there are many out there. It's only the use is for staff ships during the Kessel run a long time ago in a galaxy far far away for that matter. The light year is also with century. while the lights second can be universally described would appreciate your thoughts would recorded this but could not find how to turn on the microphone plays Diane mentioned that last whoops. News for. Law and. I love the about the Kessel run. And a very important lesson to learn that parade everything. Now he didn't say that but anyway, light-years Pasig slots seconds. What's the story? So strong professional astronomers universally use pass X. So it's not. Listener asks and it was at the center of Popular Search, but he's still the case. But absolutely, and the reason is the past is the only thing we can measure. You cannot measure the light year. It's derived unit. It's nice convenient one to get your head around. So most people can understand. Light years but it's it's not anything you can measure stunned up this top watch and say, oh I'm going to take pass is the fundamental unit and yes itself centric. So we. And maybe if the irony. Earth based astronomers. To, be honest not only not. Only neighborhood, but if there are any and then they would use A. Something similar probably for that for that definition of distance than we'll use. Whatever unit angle corresponds to a second of ARC? They use that I should've just explain what a pass I is is the the distance of an object. Which? We've sometimes an angle of one second of arc offer for which the radius of the SOB. Nine one second of Arc. So if you imagine a triangle with the sun, the earth, in extreme position in Hobart. As. The base of it and then a very, very long thin triangle to the star an that makes a one second. One Second Angle one, three, thousand, six, hundred of the degree they're not star is one passed away and that shit around any styles apnea. Pasig is about three point, two thereabouts light years. They go. All right hopefully that sorta out and. The. How how long did it take? to do the Kessel run what was the record? I don't know. Total. The answer to that. I can't remember either but they did did bring it up in a lighter episode of Star Wars and he had to correct. The the climb because somebody go wrong it was funny but yeah thanks. Thanks for your question hopefully Again, we've managed to come up with a reasonable answer for you but. Still, a thing you're listening to the space nuts podcast with Andrew Dunkley and Fred Watson. Let's take a short break now for a word from our sponsor name chepe dot com as their slogan says search by demands from name shape at the lowest prices. This is the service, the TAME IT BITES DOT com used to buy and manage out minds, and we're very happy with the service support and value. We receive Kat recommend them highly enough buying the right domain name shouldn't be had and with name Chepe, we've found it to be anything about that. Find your dream domain join over two million happy customers. When you register with name Chepe trusted with over ten million domains. You'll find you're in safe hands when it comes to turning your website ide- into reality. They also have excellent tools to find the right name for you like they handy search engine, just type in your desired name cross, your fingers, and press search. 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Thank you to as social media, supporters and followers on all sorts of platforms we love to hear from you we get cards and messages. Messages and and sometimes some brilliant gifts on facebook that people put up about some of the discussions. You can follow us on the officials space nuts facebook page. Of course, just do a search for space nuts in your facebook search engine or you can join the space nuts podcast group on facebook, and that's a group dedicated to you talking to each other and quite often people ask questions there that Fred and I have no idea about. So go to the podcast group and now answer it for you. What what I love visit everybody's got an idea. To, put forward when it comes to a complicated question and get some real really interesting answers and sometimes a bit bitter debate but it's all in good fun and it's well worth while Sarah, if you'd like to join the space nuts podcast group on facebook place to yellow, find on Youtube, which is growing in numbers and downloads are increasing for that. We're on instagram. We're on twitter where on. Any posters on bit disappoint. We gotta get in a billboards or something I think that'd be pretty cool. But that's very old school. Isn't it Never Mont now now let's go onto. Next question and or do you want to you want to talk about Venus? These two questions, a dedicated Venus but there's a huge news story this week about the phosphene having been discovered in the atmosphere of Venus. Should we go there for just do that to to introduce because? A remarkable discovery announced this week. By scientists something I know actually I talked to one of the mail. He said, nobody's asked him about the vaseline Venus, which is a shame because I've spent most of this week talking about Voss phenol Vince but never mind. The fact is I'm surprised now in spoken to him because every news report I've seen is basically said, oh there's life on Venus. Being a journalist knowing had journalism works they going with the sex he saw it at the story going with the with the the grab. By I've seen counterarguments saying hang on a minute hang on, it's not life may be an indicator of the potential for life. So what is it really? Yes. So what what's been observed is the presence of phosphene in Venus's atmosphere phosphene is. Three molecule made of phosphorus and hydrogen. Phosphate common in the atmospheres of John It. But that's because lots of hydrogen there John, John Planet Earth mostly, hydrogen, and so this plenty of it to to. To make the chemical from. Noble Chemical Processes. On the rocky planet like Venus. That isn't that prevalence of hydrogen and so phosphene. For quite some time has been held up as a potential biomarker. This predates the discovery. that. We found phosphene in the atmosphere of a rocky planet beyond the some A. Another star we might be we might be able to say that. Life their. Butts and. That's great. Actually because what this discovery fostering on Venus means is that we can actually test that I prophecies because eventually we'll be able to go that with the spacecraft and take samples of the upper atmosphere Venus and find out what's in it, but you're absolutely right the authors of the paper themselves are very. Cautious in the interpretation of what they found they have worked very, very hard. To. Basically, to to to find other causes for the appearance of fostering chemical natural chemical geological causes and they've looked at Vulcan isn't live look at the effect of sunlight looked micrometeorites. They've looked at lightning in Venus's atmosphere. They've you know they've they've looked at all these different aspects that could pass 'cause phosphene to be there none of them can make enough. phosphene to to compare with what they've actually seen and so life is their last. The last. Had basically the the last suggestion for what it might be but. They're still. In themselves still skeptical. But yeah, of course, they know that this is a big discover he. Made with James. Clark Maxwell Telescope in Hawaii. That's why the people who I know work. But folded up with Alma, the Atacama large millimeter array, and I think there are more observations that can be done without that might tell us a little bit more about it. But very exciting stuff. Very very exciting but the as as the saying goes in journalism never let the truth get in the way of good story. That's right. It's written on Pike. One of your journal Journalists Study Manual when you go to university. I'm sure. Now while we're on the subject Venus, we do have a couple of questions about that particular planet silence Goto the question I from will in Phoenix. For this will penis again thank you for answering my question last week. That was awesome. I have another question about Venus fascinated by the planet. It's so similar and so different from our results time I. I've learned that Venus rotates. Backwards But very very slowly. And that is very weird I. think because it's such a large body and I know that as bodies it larger, they tend to rotate faster because it can serve any momentum and then wondering. Why is Venus so slow? Why does it rotates? So so I think even rotates backwards. I don't know if there was like a giant impact or if we have evidence of some other eventual or series of answer. I, don't know I would love to hear. We guess think thanks for the thanks show. Thanks. I have a very quick and accurate answer to his question as to what famous is so slow and I'm going to hell for this one because she's a blond a. I'm not going to touch one hundred. I didn't think it would I didn't think you would. But I think they'd probably be a more scientific reason why is slow is is in fact slow? Yeah. So what? What will says is absolutely right So the the year on Venus. As two, hundred, twenty, four days effective actually two, thousand, five, hundred, and twenty, four, point six, five days. Excuse me. That's how long Venus takes to rotate once around the sun. But it. Gives me the dreaded frog in the throat again that? Buddies, rotation. is two hundred and forty three days. So it rotates on its axis one, thousand, two, hundred, and forty three days. What that means is it by the time it gets the end of a day. It's already gone once around the Sun. So two, hundred, twenty, four days for the rotation two, hundred, twenty, four, point, six, five. Two hundred forty three days, twenty, six minutes for. Sorry two, hundred, four, hundred, twenty, four days for the revolution around the sun going to get the words right revolutions going around the sun rotation is the planet spinning on his access two hundred twenty, four days a to revolve around the sun two, hundred, forty three days to rotate on its axis and what that effectively means exactly as we'll set it rotating backwards and to believe the younger. In your dreams if If you live there, you'll be fried. Hundred and sixty degrees. Celsius surface temperature. So in Layman's terms because I need to talk that. Why it? It's it's year is shorter than its die yes. That's exactly correct. That's not just a layman's terms. That's what they. Say Wants to know why yes. So We don't really know. The the the to some extent there will be a tidal friction fact. You know that's what happens with the Earth and the moon is the title friction between the Earth and the moon effective gravity acting on both bodies that have slowed down the moon's rotation. It was probably spending quite fast when it was born but he's now rotating once per revolution, which is why we always say the same side pointing towards the Earth. So what you've got is a similar situation with Venus, but it's kind of slightly over shots because the the day is now longer than the year. They may have been as will says, you know the May have been impact? That may have been A. Catastrophic interactions with other planets where planets come close to it in the early history solar system but I think the the rotation. Is is really linked to the fact that it is so close to the sun it's a large body. So the title effects of the Sun on on Venus going to be significant, and that is probably the bottom line. That's why it slowed down. Mercury also has peculiar rotation. It's it's not tightly locked like the moon is, but it's got. One and a half two, one resonance between the rotation. And the revolution. The rotation is fifty eight days. I think revolution if I remember is eight, hundred, eight days. So. There's another slightly peculiar effect bath. Slow rotation. So both these welt. Effectively rotates slowly as you said, probably due to the fact of the of the nearby, some slowing them down Nagar. Thank, you will love the way your brain works i. The way you phrase your questions. I think that's fabulous Do the conserve angular momentum. Think of that stuff. Good Grief You took clever for me while we're on the subject of Venus we we know of emission going the David wants to know about that Guy Goes David here just following up on the recent episode involving the Veritas Pride that's going to Venus. Just. had a thought the weather, the difference in the two planets, earth, and Venus by Biju to the impact from thea. And something to do with the energy lost in that collision that preps gave us the Mon as I think. I enjoy the show. Thanks very much goes keep up the good work. Okay So, he's wanting to find out whether or not a new collision issue could be a differential between the planets. Where it's Veritas up to at the moment is still a proposal mission. But. It is really. Designed to look the tectonic and impact history of the planet and so. You know we as we were just saying a minute ago in the in the unto wills question an impact is a possibility. David mentioned the mass size object that we think collided with the Earth and generated the moon. Possibly An impact. That impacts with the earth. May Have. To some extent had any effect on Venus over. The distance is a big enough. that. I think. For any facts on the rotation Venus what we've just been discussing whether it was due to an impact with another body. I think that would have had to have been something separate rather than. Anything to do with the THEA. And maybe very tasks will give us some insight into that down the track when it finally flies and we. We get some really detailed data. What I'm wondering is whether. The very mission is going to be modified to carry an with it can. Drop down into the upper atmosphere of Venus and have a look see what's there whether the fostering is actually coming from living organisms or not. I'm getting very excited for it because helicopters on is. A. veinous submarine. Where going to send the submarine account remember. But These are all concepts or no, but well, now the helicopters really happened but it's very exciting and I, you know the more the more we find out that we want the we want to prove these theories about various aspects of solar system. And we'll get there eventually it's just time it's time and everything's go to sort of fall into place properly and. You could be fingers crossed I guess yes that's right we. We really need to live for a couple of hundred years to say all these missions You know take shape the. Washington progress especially for once the solar system wait. Very Long. Journey. Journey Times, but that's not really on the agenda moving. Air Enough. David hope we managed to fill in some blanks for you today as well. You're listening to space nuts with Andrew and professor Fred. Watson. System. As Nets, thanks for listening to this space nuts podcast, and thank you to our patrons for supporting us with a few dollars every month, and if you would like to do that there are a few ways you can do it through how mind distribution platform a cast is it donation? Option there you can do it through super cast, which is where patrons can sign up for package deals and get multiple podcasts for a yellow monthly fee if you desire or you can go to patriotdepot dot com slash spice nuts and sign up for as little as three dollars a month that's three dollars US and That's Hilarious to it. Now it's optional it's not absolutely and utterly something that we are. Going to ever make you do it is totally up to you, and if you do that, we ever thankful but it's optional. You do not have to to our patrons thanks as always for supporting us. Of course, you get the benefits as patron you get finest material you get an ad free version and you get it early, which is one of the benefits of more view the benefits of being a patron. Fred, we've got a few more questions to knock ever. So let's get straight into them and let's hit you with the next one. Injury Fred, it is thought that the asteroid sixteen psyche is an exposed in core of a proto punit. I would like to know if the upcoming. Psyche, probe. Will determine it and is it possible that some if not most of the debris that makes up to asteroid belt is part of the outer shell of this planet. Thank you very much. Love your show. Looking forward to hear more. Okay. Thanks to your question Tom know you. But that's okay the substance of the question is asteroid sixteen sake maybe an exposed core of a proto planet. Yes freight. It is thought to be exactly that yes a sixteenth psyches close to my heart because when I did my masters degree one, hundred years ago. Researching the orbits of Asteroids Planets as we call them then sixteen psyche was the first one that I did observations of is well known asteroid. But yes, good stuff a lot of fun. So tell. Observing. With telescopes. In minus fifteen or sixteen degrees Celsius in winter in Scotland. If you could call, it was in some ways anyway sixteen psyche. As what's called an anti asteroid and them son for metal I think. It's basically may divine and now comes the determination comes partly from its mass. Well, we can measure size. We've noticed mass. That gives you its density. It tells you that it's made if I on. But you also have radar observations made from Earth and that that they to. Essentially speak of an iron nickel composition. Exactly, like some meat here is that we see nickel meteorites. And they. You've probably seen these in museums andrew an iron meteorite sliced through and it just looks like a lump of iron. It's kind of. Slightly in color, but basically shy the and we think that's what psyche might look like. Interesting. To Imagine the Cold I n Cau- of approach, the planet that has been exposed perhaps by a violent collision with some other objects. Back in the history of the solar system? Although early enough. To prevent the formation of a what we call the differentiated pro warm weather the heavy stuff to the middle. So. Some sort of collision. It Strip off the outer crust of the of the proto-planets leaving an exposed iron core and that is why psyche so interesting because. Certainly. Interesting. Enough to have its own space mission. This is one that is not in the decades ahead the launches in two years time a plan for August twenty, twenty two, and we expect the spacecraft to go into orbit around Psyche a early in twenty, twenty six. So with a good chance that you and I will be still talking about the these things by then. So hopefully, we might get some news directly from sixteen psyche maybe even images of what must be a remarkable looking object if the radar observations tell you that he's got an iron nickel surface, then it must be really quite spectacular to look at and he's great that this. this. Space Craft, which is called psyches as Assam Listener said. that. That is actually been approved. It was approved a back in twenty seventeen I think and is now well on its way. Another. Just one of the thing about the the the mission Andrew That's interesting. It uses so electric propulsion. So That means basically Solis solar panels generating electricity, which will accelerate a plasma from the exhaust of the of the space craft to to give it the you know the. Ob changes that needs the orbital adjustments mid-course maneuvres. Thing will be done by Sola Electric Power. Isn't that clever a love stuff yet? Scratch D- Now, just one thing that wanted as a consequence of of the question and get a sound like a blunt myself now. What exactly is a prototype planet? Yes. So it's what we think. You. Know Planets. Basically emerge from. This multilayered process you start off. With the cloud of gas and dust, he collapses under its own gravity. The Central Park collapses so much pressure goes up and you get a nuclear processes kicking off that becomes the star but the daybreak, the dusty debry foams along with residual gas forms into a disk. And the dust particles stick together by actually electrostatic forces are thought to be the initial things that stick dust particles together. But eventually is gravity things build up to bigger and bigger objects. They collide with one another so they get smashed up but then they Basically aggregate again a new you wind up with them proto-planets, which is significantly bigger than something called planet symbols which. The forerunner of that these smaller objects and protoplanets Almost like planets themselves but smaller and by almost like that, they like we've just been discussing differentiated into the different labs as gravity pulls. The iron down to the middle because of course, is molten because he talking about very high temperatures as a result of the collisions. So protoplanets is what will eventually become a planet when it? Creates more material. So to sixteenth. Sakis. Obviously, never going to do that because it's been bumped out of whatever older after it's been smashed up, and actually that reminds me of the second part of this question. Is it possible that some if not most of the debris that makes up the droid belt is parts of the outer shell of this planet certainly, some of it will be probably not most. Suddenly some of that would be debris from a whatever psyche was before he became a metal asteroid. Thank out. All right. Let's move onto our next question from Andrew. Alert Andrea and Trent. This is Andrew Mitchell here from noble Strega. was very interested in your discussion about what's journey from the center of the Sun to us. As I understand it. A fight on gets absorbed in remit remitted ray emitted many times ninety million times on of light to the. Outer Atmosphere of the Sun before comes to US earth. But. Is it really one fight on that's making that whole journey. I don't think so. It's not the science told markets absorbed and remitted that energy gets converted into energy within the at. And then that's another financial stocks. I was wondering what you think about that perspective. Once Jenny that it's actually different photons. Thanks. Love you work Bonnie. Thanks Andrew Van Just Cape Ann on your bird because mascot is prowling around at Fred's place. And he's GONNA ready alert. I get here Andrews Chipping in the background I even being a little allies ing. Sounds good. Yes, I must dose of a bell for. Look. Andrews. Andrew Mitchell crack questioner is absolutely right. I, kind of glossed over that is not the same photon. It is exactly it's under says. The center of the Sun Effect. Not Gamma Ray photons very high energy photons and. Interact with atoms and the remitted. Graduate the energy of becomes low. I think I said. Pull this number out of the when we spoke about less time about two million years for the journey and if suddenly that number before. I would refer Andrew to a really nice piece, which is actually on the Goddard space flight center as a NASA. Webpage just Google journey of light. An it's an article by current Fox, and that gives some lovely graphics but a bit more detail on how light gets from the center of the. To the edge and. The. The revised estimate for how long light takes to travel through the sunseekers and these the sounds different ways. He's forty thousand years not a million years but still longer than you might expect for what starts offers a Gamma Ray photons emitted by. A nuclear reaction in the center of the some to bounce its way being reb remitted as a different votes on his under says right to the surface and to shine forty thousand years it's quite a long time. So. Yeah. Take check check out the journey of light of website. Very. Good. Thanks Andrew and a final question in this episode comes from Barry I guys. I'm Barry from these five in Scotland. Fed without. Fish eggs episode really got me thinking That our solar system might once hottest can start attached to it. got. ME. Wondering about the impact on the orbits of planets and on the conditions of those when there's a second son. I was thinking that for a planet orbiting one or both stars in the in system. You'd expect there to be It constantly being food closer to one or other of the stars or to both of them. The big question for me is how significant those changing forces and movements would be. And whether they might lead constantly changing conditions on the planet committee, even affect the potential for advanced life developing. Complicated equation. I'm sure there more unknowns, nunes that love to hear your thoughts in the Joe. Guys and facts. Regret you. Thank you Barry and I might just point out that I've done a fair bit of family history research and a significant element of my ancestry is centered around five in. Scotland. So I yeah on very excited to come a connected with somebody from Scotland even as he's nab? Yeah. Great accent too by the way, not could even understand him fred. Well these SNOOKA five Barry's absolute barry's absolutely right. I, know it. Well, in fact, is a spiritual home. I. Have on this planet that's where it is because that's where Saint Andrews is where I. fabricated. My. Indication. And of course, I might add some one of my daughters lives in still so. Connections that Guy Back. A couple of hundred years to to connect with my family and five but yes. They did it or originate they. As you know through one branch, my family, which is very soothing to discover. Or is thought I had scored his blood well. Whether you've you've got, you've got that Scottish chip on your shoulder, which I'm sure I have to that comes from origins. Like. Spending money which. Glad. Lovely I'm hit Barry's accent. PFEIFFER and a great question as well about being. The idea of what happens with the planets of multiple stars this is actually being studied. In quite a lot of detail A. By. By the theoretical people who model the gravitational influence of of things of this sort and you under I think there are already examples both of. Planets orbiting one star of the binary system and a planet orbiting both styles of a binary system which are two very, very different. Scenarios. And exactly as Berry says, you've got constantly changing gravitational forces. It's it would. It would result in. Some tendency toward instability would imagine in the orbit of a planet, but you could find situations where. You know the the the resonances between the various obits if you've got a binary system, what that line do? Buy. A pair of stars orbiting one another my impose a particular orbit on the planet of one or both of the stars that might result in stable situation. So. I'm not an expert on this but I know people at work and the possibilities of that there will be. There will be. Scenarios where we do have planets, orbiting multiple stars, and so exactly as Barry says, how does that affect the evolution of life? You would think it might be quite disruptive. I mean one of the reasons why we? Believe life emerged to the form out to the level that it has on our own planet is because of the stabilizing influence of the move because the moon stopped the earth from changing its axis of rotation of time and I think. If, you can find stable situations way you've got very very long periods with climates you know confounded constant climbers which. we have had on our own planet, the climate does change we. Over time, but it's relative changes are relatively slow at least until now so that. that. That suggests that maybe. It would be completely detrimental to life to have multiple styles of about which. Planets orbiting and then he can you know flights a fancy of multiple sunrises and sunsets and things of that sort. It's great stuff. It's worth chasing Barry few. If you got the opportunity, just have a look planets have multiple stars on on the web. And you probably find all kinds of interesting bits of information that relate to what we've been talking about. Thanks very much question and thanks for phony getting into. It's very nice to hear the firefighters and again. It's lovely. I despise he got the idea from how son using having once had a a monory. I would plus together lock he's talking about. They probably very, very long way apart I. Don't remember the figure we talked about a couple of weeks ago. But it was. It was a widely separated binary system which we know things that do exist in the in a part of the galaxy. Okay thanks, Barry Love the question and thanks to everyone who contributed to this week's episode. Really do appreciate it, and of course, if you do want to ask questions were more than willing to accept them The truth is we don't get to all of them these guys because we get so many. So we Kinda hand pick them and. that's just the way it has to be. So no disrespect we just We just can't get to the mole. Absolutely. That's why we dedicate. shows to or questions to do a bit of a catch up on many that we do get but we do appreciate it and you can certainly record your question. Var at websites space nuts, podcast, dot com, click on the TAB. If you've got a device we microphone, it's really that simple just press record and a wii ago who I you way of from what you question and it will be recorded and we can do what we did today in and put it on the podcast love to hear all the all the different voices from all over the world. And that brings us to the end of another episode Fred Thank you again. Anytime. You. Can probably put that Maria. Okay. Sounds Great. Thank you. That's professor Fred Watson Astronomer Lodge Proud of the team he on the space and that's podcast for me. Andrew. Dunkley thanks again for listening. Catch you on the very next episode. He's Available at Apple podcasts Google podcasts spotify iheartradio, your favorite podcast. You can also stream on demand at God stuff. This is paying now the podcast production from thoughts dot com.
Houston, We Have A Problem...and a Question or Two
"The fifteen seconds guidance been journal and nine agnes sequence spence nets three to four or five five one space details good once again and thank you for joining us on this space nuts podcast episode hundred and fifty five. My name is andrew dunkley your host and the man with the brain power to make sense of it. All is the one and only fred watson astronomer at large hello for aid hello andrew. Thank you for that. Some would that but that's alright nearest and dearest of money for just take it on the chin. That's the way. I spent four years of marriage taken the gene. Speaking of taking it on the chain freight last week we were talking about my pending covid nineteen ice and you said you had absolutely no symptoms whatsoever other than maybe a bit of a sore arm. Well i went and had mine on monday and the astrazeneca vaccine wasn't a difficult process. I went in. I identified me. They used a mugshot for that. By the way they asked me if you questions and because of my history with vaccines because i have reacted to them. In the past i spend extra time in the special room afterwards. Oh god the did the date. And i spent the rest of the day quite happily but i was not after free. Unlock your good self. I had Cult shivers that. Not a hot and cold flushes. I had body aches and pains. I had a headache and the next day was just as in yesterday just Full on lethargy. Just headache and letter g. all day. And then i felt a bit better towards the evening and speaking to a friend of mine in queensland who has also had his first injection he said. When did you have us at ten o'clock on monday morning. I said you're gonna have one more. We'd not and i said what's that mean. He said you'll find out and he was right about three thirty this morning. I woke up in a leather of sweat. High was so drenched. It was lockout bain standing under a shout. My hair was soaked. Everything talked drainage but then a work up you know got up and dealt with that. But when i woke up and got on with the diehard didn't feel bad. I feel pretty good at the moment. Just maybe a little bit of forgiveness but Other than that on. i'm through worst of it. So some people have sought effect. I sound like i had them all wonders. I didn't have any which is my my father. My father didn't have any of that but my mother had the siamese audie so obviously got heard in thanks. Mom look people are scared to get done for those sorts of raising spot. Not getting done opens you up to something much more scary. So the day of discomfort. Is sony small to pay today. We will be hearing questions questions from audience where one hundred percent dedicated to questions. The answer to that is yes and thanks for joining us. We'll see you next week. I love that joke before times. Yeah we're going to hear from ashley who's got a triple banger for us Christian wants to know about the rotation speed of the earth. We're gonna hear from marius about planet. J zero seven one. Four zero seven be. John wants to know about him bay. And we've got a jerry in san diego who's got a question for us and i think there's one more that i've missed mark from newbury about hydrogen in the sun and looking at the length that question this could be a very long show but anyway we'll get through all of the who's they will. We'll get through all of those today. So let's start fred with i. Which is an audio question from young ashleigh. My name is ashley and So i'm have you guys tried v The oculus Space on mike. It's a virtual reality thing like you're on the iss. So i did that day and What i also have another question about is what happens. A we had no atmosphere in also on. What do you think there is any other animals out there and Do you think that will find them. First on there now find us i that is that is a good question. We'll get in a minute Oculus i did do something recently fred. Which involved the international space station. I don't know if it was oculus. But it was on the iss website where you can use a simulator to dock with the international space station. And i had a crack that and it is really quite a lot of fun but it requires incredible concentration because the closer you get to docking your spaceship the hotter it is because of the variations in thrust. And your and pitch and all the angles. You've got to take into account. And because i was trying to steal with the cable and i'm sure they don't have to do that on a spaceship. It got more difficult because as you get closer. You've got to make more subtle changes in direction and i found it very hard in the middle of it all. I got called away. So i had to stop the spaceship. Go out the back and low bricks. Oh something then come back in and start again okay back. The spaceship drifted hundreds of meters away. And i had to redo the whole thing. But i did succeed in my first attempt at doctrine and it is the same as the simulator. They use at nassar apparently or wherever. I don't know if that's oculus. But i had to go at that. And yeah. It's it keeps you brian. Ticking of really go to concentrate. I enjoyed it was fun. Okay so. I'm not sure. If that was oculus i no. It's not. Oculus is a system of virtual reality. Headsets most notably the oculus rift which were introduced back in twenty six sixteen. I was thinking. I've heard of them for a long time. Never had a chance to have a shot at one Using one so it's it's a it's a virtual reality system. I mean virtual realities coming to popularity. And of course you can do it now. If you've got a headset that will let you use your your mobile phone to produce the two images that give you the stereoscopic vision but oculus was the one of the early ones and it will be sensational to be on the s With an oculus rift headset and the system. Providing the backup. I'm sure you'd get every sim sensation other than gravity of being on board the spacecraft. And may. well be that what you did that. That system that you did to dot with the might be available as an oculus. Rift program is actually mentioned. I've not done it told. This is great stuff. The second part of actually question was about what would happen. If there was no atmosphere i assume no atmosphere on earth is way of going with this. Indeed the answer is actually. We'd be in deep trouble so the very yet the the oceans would boil the water vapor would be lost to the to the to the space around the earth. That would leave the very interesting. Because you know the bill. Deep valleys in rifts. And things like that with no watch on the won't be anybody there to see either 'cause we would boil to Blood boil which would would not be healthy so fortunately the atmosphere is extremely stable. does variations in which we hear about in the news every day. It's called the weather. Plus climate changes which take place over longer periods of time but yet without the atmosphere we could not possibly exist. and that's why there's no life We believe of any kind on the moon. The moon is a world with no atmosphere. He's got a very very thin gas around it which we call the x. fear but it's nothing like an atmosphere like we have here on earth so we don't want that and i think the last question ashley was about animals out there we don't know there may be the. It's really interesting. Because i think the opinion of strimmers and the scientists called astrobiologists to look at a life the possibilities of life out in the universe lesson to be less convinced that we'll find animals in space. We might find microbes but animals might be just a step too far because they're they might need all kinds of accidents in a on a planet In order for them to form while you final question will they find us before we then. Well that's possible as well. We might be sitting here saying no. No there's no animals out there. Saly one appears but for an astronomer that will be very interesting experience Really liked to do and fred speaking of animals on other planets. I believe some years ago. There was a fabulous april fools joke that was played. I think it was in newspapers or some sort of scientific pipe. It was released. That suggested that mas was populated by exotic animals of all kinds. They kinda describe it like The great plains of africa. If i recall correctly at sucked everybody in big time just hook line and sinker and i suppose i dunno winner was but it was just one of the great april fool's day jokes or may have just been something that somebody did at april fools day regime but yeah i do recall it. It's worth looking up if you if you want to follow it up because it is rather amusing. Yeah now let's move onto our next question. This comes from christian in brazil. This is a text question. Hi andrew and fred. Thanks for your wonderful show in relation to your story last week about the earth. Spinning faster probably wasn't last week. Vertical can fred a shed any light on the earth actually spinning slower in the distant past. I had heard that when the dinosaurs were around one day on earth about eighteen hours long. Could this affect the gravity on earth. Making things grow bigger and heavier. It's hard to believe the seventy tonsils could've walked around with such tiny legs. Thank you thanks christian. Good question and i do recall this coming up before i think yes. Yes certainly we talked about this rotation. I don't think they think christian is referring to that we spoke about the was a report that i think. Last year the day got very very slightly joe period rather than the usual lengthening of the day which try a spin it and i think that was that was what it was so That generally speaking when we look backwards in time we eat find the spinning more quickly And the thinking is that when they are going back four and a half billion years now. The day was maybe a shortest for hours. Whoa never never shorter than that. Though because one of the theories for the origin of the moon would be whilst the moon the were spinning so fast. That daybreak spun off vehicle would need it. It would need to have been spending quite considerably faster than once every four hours for that to happen it. Yes the was. A rapid spinner an slowed now christian says. He's heard that when the dinosaurs were around one day was only eighteen hours long. It certain shelter than it is now. I'm not sure whether it's that short though because that's only sixty six million years ago which is not in in this sort of cosmic timescales that we're talking about so. I suspect the day was shorter than twenty four hours but not maybe not quite down to eighteen hours but questions are good ones. Could this affect the gravity on earth. Making things grow bigger and heavier to some extent. That's true because the fastest spinning earth has gives you more of a centrifugal force on the equator lighter. And if we can you know we can say that changing gravity now even with the equipment is so sensitive that you can measure the difference between a person's weight on the equator it on the poll and they're slightly different but it is a very small effect and i don't think it would have any significant influence on the way things evolved a. When you go by you know hundred million years or so to the to the era of the dinosaurs. I think that the reason why they groups big was just it was just an evolutionary almost an evolutionary dead end to make them bigger and better the eight more things and all the rest of it. The likes were pretty colossal when you look at dinosaur skeletons that they want tiny they were pretty pretty substantial structures so yeah great question though and we should talk more about the way. The slowdown has gone over the geological periods. It's because it would certainly influence of things things. The way things worked. Mike can probably a segment to that in the in future episodes possibly could carry. That sounds good. Yeah i i guess A great many people are fascinated by the era of the dinosaurs and what the earth was locked. But when you when you look at history has been changing constantly and has has had many and some significant variations on different parts of the planet at different times. It's it's quite quite extraordinary when you look back and find out what happened. I read an article only yesterday. They were doing mud sampling from the bottoms of rivers and lakes and discovered that climate change probably started four thousand years ago. Not three hundred years ago as we've all been told that human the human impact on earth's atmosphere notice climate probably began a lot longer back than we've all been it. Yeah yeah i like the clearing of forests and and that can tell through the pollen samples larry upon laugh and i did the experiment by going back. Eighteen thousand years at a time where the earth was coming out of an ice age. And we're able to use that as a baseline to compare h series each period of time that that we're looking at and the pollen samples clearly. Show that the human influence on earth began probably four thousand years ago in some parts of the planet two thousand years ago in other parts of the planet. So it's it is fascinating fascinating very very scary all at the same time but just much more aware of it. I think these days than we trying to do something about it. Which is which is good news right. Thank you christian for your question. And thank you ashley. Lovely to hear your voice. I just so thrilled by your enthusiasm. We're gonna take a little break right now and when we come back. We'll have more questions on the space snaps. Podcast andrew. Dunkley here with fred watson. Space nuts thanks for joining us on the space. And that's podcast and i just wanted to let you know very quickly. We have some new propaganda new items in our space now shop. In fact hugh message me the other day and said You know we've got a bomber jacket now a bomber jacket so go and check it out spacing out podcast dot com click on the shop. Lincoln see what takes your fancy. The brand new book by the way really really now available in paperback. The paperback release date was the thirty. First of may for the hitler paradox. Already got a review on amazon frayed. Somebody's gotta go stars. Four stars just four stars. I'm not unhappy with that. If you start off with one star it takes a lot of work to get yourself back up there again. So a four star star is nice. So i thank you for that donahue was now to our next question and this one comes from marius who we believe is from norway. Lads money emmys myers. And i live in the southern path of all now. I've been listening to you lattes for the past six months or so. Let's go through that much of a campaign to connecticut thing but so far it's really really good really enjoyed listening to another work. I in many others questions request for you to talk about an aunt at a moment of currently built up ten questions more more of a calm only asked a couple of questions at a time that are related to order has pesticides can ever use a software called space. Have either of you used it. Heard about it if so can you tell later that about it. Shattered his communities at can enjoy it. If possible and while i was playing around on and the gay i found specific. All of call one four cerro seven be got business and its sister is humongous. Could you tell us a little bit about his planets and compare it to something like san are ending the solar system. Thanks to show guys really enjoy. Thank you great to hear your voice and Yeah i think we can start with the did he say it was a game only some. I didn't quite catch it thirty space age. But i'm not sure it's not something i'm aware of You know something. I've ever played with silicon comment on it but i can't comment on jay one for seven b so check. Wash straighter that. Yeah because clearly they built this extraordinary planet into the game which is fabulous but is a real a real object it. he's a planet. An extra planet is orbiting sun like star about four hundred and thirty light years away. It's it's a star that's sort of part of a bigger group of fairly young stars like the sun so j one four seven fourteen. O seven bay. We probably call it. It's a planet that was discovered by dimming it the fact that it dimmed the light of its parent star is it passed in front of it the so called transit method and a great way of finding exoplanets. But it's as long ago as two thousand and seven the the strongest who are observing. This showed not just a single kind of dip in a the brightness of the of the parents star as the planet went in front of it but this whole complex series of dips Short term changes in the star's brightness seemed to be caused by differing amounts of obscure ration- passing in front of it. And what what you end up with is the The conclusion that the planet as a Not just the planet that it's got a ring system as well a significant ring system that is also absolutely noah so this is the big surprise from j. Fourteen o seven its ring system has a diameter of about one hundred and twenty million kilometres which means that if it was where the sun is it would reach eighty percent of the way to the. You know forget saturn. This thing has the most enormous ring system. Essentially a solar system sized ring system is only as far as the third rocky planet in the solar system right center the but it's still enormous and it was in the news again around about a year or so ago bit more than a year ago because there's a gap in the rings. There's a large gap which some researchers wondered whether it was caused by a moon orbiting outside the ring system. New research apparently showed that wasn't possible but it it. What is possible is that there is a a baby moon that sam bedded in the rings and we see that saturn some saturn's moon is actually within the ring system So the what has to happen now. It remember what the the period of rotation of j. fourteen o seven bays around its parents da. But this quite a long way i think before it passes in front of its parent star again but you can bet when that happens a lot of big telescopes we'll be watching it to watch the the the series of dips that you get to determine what the structure of its ring system is so it's something that will appear in the news again hopefully before too long. Yeah fascinating or marius. Thank you so much sorry. We couldn't tell you anything about the The guy in were referring to or whatever it was. But i'll be fascinated to find out more about it myself. Let's move onto our next question from john in barnsley at text question. Hi andrew and fred. Thanks for the great podcast. I only discovered a back. But i've been listening to an episode every night since get life john. Not kidding since you said you running a question that i have a couple of struggled to find answers to would measurements of the mvp. Look tickle to any observer in any position in the universe a would it look different based on the observer's position and their own observable universe would the universe have been infinite in size immediately after inflation started and would be curvature of space time have been flat during inflation as we measure it to be now. Thanks again John from bonds. -ly got a lot going on there see. Mb are going to be the one that dumb question. What's that stand for cosmic microwave. But i knew it. I couldn't i just couldn't get it together. You would ever nineteen vaccination shot that yes so. It's a really good question and john's absolutely right. that imagine. The universe is huge volume of space. The bit that we can see is like i think of it. I think i sometimes think of in terms of a huge concert hall or something like that. Many a beach ball in it with us at the center of the beach ball and we can only see as far as the readiness of the beach ball because The cosmic microwave background gets in the way the flash of the big bang. Which is what we're seeing and so Yeah observers in different bits of that huge concert whole sized universe. We'll see different beachballs they'll see different cosmic microwave background and i think the patterns on the by one tech this this tiny ripple of structure in it and by tiny in terms of its extent. It's one it's the cosmic. Microwave background is uniform to better than one part in one hundred thousand. So we're looking. We find tiny fluctuations in it which correspond to fluctuations in temperature at the time that we're looking back to about three hundred and eighty thousand years after the big bang those those fluctuations will look different in different parts of the universe. Bats the story. They're telling in terms of you know how much fluctuation there is. And the what we call the power spectrum which is just a characteristic of the patent you saying they should be the same everywhere so the details might be different but the basic message will be the saying. Would the universe have been infinite in size immediately after inflation started the second john's questions. We don't know that the universe is infinite but we do know is very very big indeed and it may be so we think it's the nation that sort of grew it so big so i don't know the answer to that question. The inflation lasted a very brief time. It was about ten to minus thirty three. I think of a second. Something of that sort So the universe was different at the beginning from what it was at the end. I don't know about whether it was infant or not. In that time and the curvature of space time that john refers to which we say is flats not doesn't mean the universe is flat like a pancake. It means that the normal geometry that we understand of parallel lines not meeting and things of that sort carries on throughout the universe that would that would that curvature of been flat during inflation is we measure it to be now probably not because we think that one of the reasons why it's flatties because of inflation so that find out lots of things so that might have also imprinted the geometry of the universe to so some great question. John most of which don't have preferences but thank you thanks for asking them nevertheless indeed. Thank you john appreciate it. And if you get the impression were rushing a bit today yes we are. We've had some major technical issues fritz gotomeeting. so we've got a barrel through this one so it'll be a short segment than usual shorter program this week. Just apologies for that and that people like to sit back and relax for the four or five hours. We normally type but That went that won't be happening these time. But i'm sure you'll understand that the internet being the internet. It can throw us a few curveballs which should certainly done today. Having said that you listening to the space nets podcast. With don. Kelly and fred watson base mutts special. Thank you to patrons the people who put a couple of in here and there to keep us afloat every week. We certainly do want to encourage people to become patrons but we do not demand it but if you'd like to find out about how you can support space nuts financially go to our website space. Nats podcast dot com hit the supporter button and see what options are available. Of course. the shop is another way and support us. We make a better one percent profit on everything we sell there and that includes my books but forgets two percent on his special nefer. Let's move onto final audience question for today. And this one comes from jerry in san diego. I believe hello professor. Fred watson and andrew dunkley my name is jerry. And i've been listening to your superb podcast and recommending it to every space enthusiasts. I've come across since episode one today. I am transmitting from san diego california. But i am originally born and raised from the great plains of south dakota in the us. I have two questions. The first is about nasr's gateway project trying to establish a permanent presence on our closest satellite the moon from my understanding there either trying to build a space station or a surface station additionally in early two thousands reading a couple articles about nasa contemplating decommissioning or selling their portion of the international space station due to a number of reasons. Obviously that didn't happen. But i feel what the continuation space exploration the is going to become less and less relevant so my question is why. Don't the nations that control the international space station park the iss. Either in one of the legrand's points as a rendezvous point to the moon or park the assess in around the moon. I know this would take a very significant amount of fuel and work to make happen. But i feel like transporting the fuel to space and simply moving. A space station would be an easier endeavor than getting the medals to space then to construct a brand new space station around the moon for my second question. I was wondering why we don't hear a lot about the great attractor which seems to be pulling everything our universe to it. It just seems like a very interesting subject to talk about. If you have any information on it it'd be greatly appreciated or is it never talked about because the great attractor is so far out into space and so known. It's not even a worthy subject to debate lasted. I have no idea for your space not shot. You should take the logo create. Velcro patches stickers. I think it'd be a great seller for anyone who liked to buy stickers represent the podcast show in their own little way at work or at home with that being said. I just wanted to thank you for bringing all the corners of this plan together with your fantastic podcast. I feel multinational. Space exploration and cooperation is one of the few things that really lets the best humanity shine even amongst political strife and it reminds us to simply be decent human beings. Keep on cracking under questions. Thank you thank you jerry. I totally agree with him on that political front. And it's something. I've voiced several times in more recent episodes. But on the same page with the jerry place to tell you we do have stickers in the space and that shop but the velcro patches or just some yeah my patches you can sell on our put that to hugh and see if we can get that added into the mix. That's a good idea. Now he's asking about a moon station or a space station around the moon or moving the s as a staging point for going to the moon are any of those things possibilities probabilities. It's a great idea andrew. And i'm so the gateway project is it. It's a mini space station to be placed in arbitrary on the moon. That is sort of ongoing. I think it's designed for astronauts before they touchdown on the lunar surface. It's of course that is built with twenty twenty technology whereas the international space station dates from two thousand when when it first became a habitable or how inhabited constantly it's It's an interesting idea to to recycle it by shoving it out into lunar orbit. And yes it. Would they something very very powerful to do that. But that's not an impossibility. I think i think in the end though. It's going to be that the space station. It's destiny is for it to be privatized. That's essentially what's been said already by the us government. They're looking at perhaps even as early as twenty twenty-five there five space agencies which are involved with the international space station. They've gotta do. Some deals on this. But i think there's a good chance that it will end up as a as a legacy holiday resort for space tourists down the track put. We're a bit away from that yet. And i think it's more likely that it will be new hardware. Excuse me that will be used for lunar orbit operations and things of that sort so berry mind. We've got about two minutes left after us know. Let me let me go to the second part which is about the great attractor and i think we since this question came in. I think we've talked about it. Andrew a certainly disagreement on the great attractor not very long ago. It's this it's the fact that somewhere behind the milky way. It's a long way off but it has to lie in the plane of the milky way so we can't exactly see what's going on there. We see the nearest few thousand years. Not the nearest. A few hundred million light years but there is a mass concentration. And it's not something that's not talked about. There's a lot of research going on it. It is probably part of a much bigger concentration as well. It's revealed by the way. This great attractor is pulling galaxies towards it that is still an ongoing of really an ongoing a piece of research might cover it again in a bit more detail later on i think the third was the velcro patches. Is that right i leave. That went up to your dad. I think mark we sorry. Jerry we have talked about the great attractor before and we discovered it was a john. Deere or possibly massey ferguson. I had to use joke again because it was so darn good down good and we did have one more question. Do you want to skip it for next week next week. Show apologies to mark in apologies. Demark newberry. We have run out of time due to other commitments. So we will catch up with you next week. Thanks to everyone who contributed to questions only episode two hundred and fifty five of space nuts. Really appreciate it to everybody. Actually christian marriage. John and jerry. Keep those questions coming in via website. Space podcast dot com and you can upload them through the ama app whether that's audio or text we at mind came coming. Fred will draw on there. It's not an infinite line either. It's just a basic line. Of course the bottom of the page until next week. I did learn one thing. That's going to be beneficial for my future in this episode. When judy are retire. I'm going to be king of the hate. Because i how to make lose. We're going to move to the equator. Ha they saw on going to solve one of the great riddles of humanity. Had it had had we lose white. We moved to the equator. Thank you fred. And it's always great fun quick and easy this week not so easy actually pod that we will catch you next time. See you soon. Thanks for so you. So thanks andrew. That's fred watson storm lodge part of the team here at the space nuts podcast. thanks also to shoot. Who's really going to be earning these dolor fifty this week and from me android cly. Thanks for joining us. We'll catch you on the next episode by by listening to this podcast. Subscribe to the podcast on odia and stitch-up or your favorite podcast distributor. This is now quality podcast production from dot com.
"Love this podcast support this show through the a cast support a feature. It's up to you how much you give and there's no regular commitment. Just hit the link in the show description to support now than 15 seconds guidance to the internal can nine ignition sequence space nut size three to five or more about more radio on Space notice that recorded meals good 11. Thanks for joining us on another edition of the Space Nuts podcast episode 2 to 3 months. My name is Andrew dunkley and joining me as always is the good professor Fred Watson astronomer at large. Hello Fred Andrew. It's nice to be good for a change Euro with trade and another age some of the things that people used to say about me. I think we've all been there. Saying at about the federal treasurer of this week because the the budgets been released and it's the Cove covid budget some scary numbers, but you know, you've got the economy going and that means spending money and that means going into debt and that means, you know children and our children's children and their children are all going to have to pick up the slack in a few years time, but that's the way it goes. Unfortunately and I'm sure it'll be the same in many other countries around the world used to come now. We got a lot to talk about today. There's a few people you want to mention that have won prizes the Nobel Prize we're talking about one of the stories that's in the news this week that we're going to talk about is a study of comets which has revealed that our our system has a second alignment plane, which I think you'll find rather fascinating but maybe more so the possibility that around two dozen 24 odd x e Planets have better potential for life than Earth. That gets you thinking doesn't it? So we'll look at that and some audience questions one from Zoey in Northern Ireland and one from Gareth this coming up on this edition of choice nuts now Fred a few people you want to mention briefly as recipients of the Nobel Prize. This would be the Nobel Prize for science. Is it it's physics. Yep. So the 2020 Nobel Prize for physics indeed being shared in kind of two halves half goes to that esteemed British like Rodger Penrose. He he and you and I have talked about Rodger many times because of his work on the idea that black holes might spawn new universes off his his prize is not for that. It's for the discovery that black hole formation is a robust prediction of the general theory of relativity in other words, he dead Basically proved that black holes exist mathematically very well-known physicist. I'm sure I've told you before I was wanted a public lecture that Rodger gave in Sydney and halfway through the lectures mobile phone rang and he took the call so somebody in Oxford I think saying what do we do about this? I spoke for about five minutes and then got back-to-back very individual style. So he he's got half the prize and the other half goes to to really big names in in the science of black hole observations lineup cancel who is German and Andrea Gates who is American they have both independently and using different instruments have observed the orbits of stars around the black hole at the center of our galaxy The supermassive black hole. So they looked at the waist our swarm around it. They've met The orbits of those Styles which is why we know the mass of that black hole. So accurately it's about 4 million times the mass of the Sun. So Andre Agassi has used the Keck telescopes in Hawaii to observe the galactic center. While Rinehart Dental has used the European Southern observatory's VLT the very often telescope down there in Chile and they produced basically they produced movies over the last more than 20 years. They've both been working since the 1990s on this page produce movies of the motion of the Stars around the around the galactic center a stunning stuff. You can't actually see that galactic center directly in visible light. So they used infrared lights to you know, the infrared radiation released by these stars to to penetrate the dust that lies between ourselves and the galactic center fantastic stuff off. Been following their work for well over 20 years and I'm delighted that they both shared the second half of this Nobel Prize the first half going to Rodger Penrose. So it's gray noon Thursday, it is indeed and I think anybody who achieves those signs those sorts of levels of greatness certainly deserve deserve to be recognized for it. And while the Nobel Prize came about because of something terribly destructive called Dynamite we being used for very good things these days is it not? Yeah. That's right. Now let's move on to our first topic and a a study of comments revealing that our solar system has a second alignment plane. Now, I'm guessing the first month is the planets. That's right. Yeah, which is the the plane of the the orbits of the planets. It's called the ecliptic. It's very flat plane. I mean the Thursday Misfits and Mercury and Venus near the middle. They're tilted at a few degrees to the plane. But most of the rest of the planets are, you know, essentially lie in this same play in the name of this orbit is the actual the ecliptic itself. It was one of the reasons why Pluto was seen as an outsider very early on in but the history of knowledge of choice because it's inclined that I remember rightly 17°, I think to the ecliptic plane. So it's it's it's well out of it. Anyway that plane is what probably you know full well in Florida half billion years ago when the solar system was young was was a disc of material that the protoplanetary disk, but once now happened is a scientist in Japan whose whose name is Ari car higuchi. I think that's pronouncing it properly who's actually at the University of Occupational And environmental health in Japan. It's an official name for a university but she's working there and basically has worked on some of the the Nash observatories projects the national observatory in Japan. So she's basically said okay that ecliptic plane May well have come about because of the influence of the gravity of our galaxy the whole galaxy itself. In other words, the Milky Way the plane of the Milky Way exerts gravitational forces off. So she looked at the way those foster excuse me would might have set up the ecliptic in other words that the plane of this planetary disk protoplanetary disk back in the early history of the solar system how that might have been set up in the first place because the ecliptic stilted over with respect to the disk of the Milky Way by about sixty degrees it's dead. roughly sixty degrees and what she found was that there should be another plane that would be favored by the galactic the effect of Galactic gravity on the young solar system. So we've got the ecliptic tilted over at sixty degrees and the calculations show that there should be another plane also at 60° to the Milky Way But in a position Direction and she called it the empty ecliptic because essentially it doesn't contain a planetary system like, you know, like life the the really clip tick and that's a really interesting mathematical entity comes from our study of her study of the gravitational pull of the Galaxy, but then she looks at the orbits of comments and that in itself is an interesting thing because the suggestion is that Comments actually started off being formed in the ecliptic. We know we now know that comets occupy this spherical shell around the solar system called the Oort cloud and that's because they sort of come in from all directions. But what she's saying is that originally those comments would have been in there would have been probably concentrated in the ecliptic wage, but also perhaps in what we now see as the empty ecliptic and so to cut a long story short doing calculations of the orbits of comets you look at the statistics of it and sure enough she finds peaks in the the the basically the direction of of actually of the page and the aphelion that the farthest point from the some she finds two peaks in this distribution in the Comets in our you know, catalog of Commerce one near the eclipse wage. Among nearly empty ecliptic. So it's really interesting to find that you can make a prediction from you know, the the Dynamics of our own Galaxy Edge. It relates to the solar system and then make some you know, look at the catalog of of, tree objects that we have already available and find that there is evidence that what she's saying is correct nice piece of work. So would it be fair to say to this point in time? We've just assumed that all the comments are on the same plane and we've we've not really look down to the yeah their origin to graduate degree since we weren't away. Yeah. So so we it's been the opposite we've assumed that, it's have money coming from anywhere. They've been not in the plane but in this spherical shell the art cloud and that's certainly the case. We you know, they do come in from all directions. That's why you proposed the idea of this very closed off. Of comments, but what this work is showing is that the Oort cloud probably started off exactly as you said with comments in the plane of the solar system because that's sort of how they should be formed. But because, it's a small objects and and have been there a long way out this, you know, they're in the depths of the solar system. They've been perturbed by off the passage of other stars and things of that sort, which is why they're now in a spherical shell but I think what you're saying is that even within that spherical distribution of comets there is a sort of fossil wage remnant of the fact that they started off not only in the ecliptic but also in this empty ecliptic as well the to ecliptic directions. I'm not salute to the the whole paper for this which I'm going to do cuz it's interesting work. But so yeah, basically this is a you know, this is a second hand report, but it's yeah, it's a it's a VIN number. Resting place of work and it's quite far-reaching really it's yes if there's an inside the history of our solar system. Yeah. And from what I've read the this now opens up future study of long., It's so that they can you know, double-check their work I suppose so they can confirm their beliefs confirm their theories. Yeah, and that's what happens is know when you come up with an idea that could find a way of proving it. Yeah. Yeah, that's right. And actually the there's something on the on the agenda which is you know, I've spoken about the Vera see Ruben telescope, which may be called the large synoptic survey telescope should open for business. I think it's next year or the following year. It's been held up a bit by covid-19 there that that still building it down in Chile not very far from La Sirena. I saw it last year actually the construction side, but this telescope will survey the entire Sky every week effectively dead. Every few days and it's looking for what it called transient events. And that is you know, they'll pick up thousands of comments this page telescope and as well as asteroids, so we might have more evidence for the for the this empty ecliptic being a real thing by the time and that's those surveys are done on the on the very Ruben telescope fascinating exciting. All right. Well, they think it is. Yes and they'll definitely be more to talk about wage that sort of information starts to filter back. So we will watch with interest as I say Fred you all listening to the Space Nuts podcast Andrew dunkley here with Fred Watson over the wage. Yes that I'm over here. He's over there. Now, let's take a little break and find out more about our sponsor expressvpn rated number one by techradar. This is the one I use I've been using it for a couple of years and I love it. I joined expressvpn now that were brand new new to the market, but I read a lot of reviews and did a lot of comparisons and it was just something about their their business model that I particularly liked and a couple of years down the track honestly can't complain their interface is very easy to use their their service is second to none. I've had to contact them a couple of times about certain things that I wanted to do and they were brilliant. So you may be wondering why I do need a VPN at all. 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Come slash space to learn more and you'll find the link details in the show notes. And on our website now back to the show Space Nuts. Thanks for listening to the space. And that's podcast Andrew dunkley here with the good professor Fred Watson are now something I haven't mentioned for a long time is the space in that shop. You can find it on our website space. That's podcast.com. You can click on the the the shop Tab and there's new products that I didn't even know. We had like the bubble free stickers you can now get the Space Nuts logo in the office of a sticker. There's the dad hat. What's what's a dead? I don't know. What a dad hat is but there I'm thinking it's like a baseball cap, but you know a bit more daggy looking chaps more more akin to something an astronomer might wear whatever embroidered t-shirts for men and women. We've got the matte black magic coffee cup where you could probably drink too age. Of it or something else. We've got polo shirts. We've got colored mugs with the the big logo on them. We've even got the unisex hoodie. The Space Nuts unisex. Hoodie is not available. It's all on the space that's shop on our website space and that's podcast.com my goodness. It's just going gangbusters. And yeah, there's some good stuff with Christmas coming up and you know, you've got a dad that doesn't have you know, you've got no idea what to get him. The dad had would be a go. I reckon yeah off or polish it or my go get him one of everything Why Not Afraid let us move on to this study of world exoplanets effectively and what they've found is possibly a couple of dozen exoplanets that seem to have a better potential for life than earth now to this point in time Earth is still off. Replacing the whole universe that we are aware of that has life, but we strongly suspect there will be other places perhaps in our own solar system that Harbors some kind of Life probably microbial choice, but to actually be bold enough to step out and say well we think these twenty-four on planets are probably better than Earth for harboring life is a pretty big leap of faith isn't dead. Yeah. That's well. It's an interesting idea other, you know places that can out earth the earth and apparently there are home is similar when making we're making it easier for them. Yes, that's right, you know planets that that may have conditions better than us and indeed May orbit stars that are better than our son. That's so what what has happened is a group of scientists led by somebody at Washington State University. I think he's off. Connected with the Technical University in Berlin. His name is Derek shoots, and he has got together with some colleagues and penne. Hello from the Max Planck Institute for solar system research and Edouard ganar of via Nova University. So that you are this is a group of scientists have basically looked at what they call Super habitability criteria. So not just habitability, but super habitability wage, they looked through the list of four and a half thousand now known exoplanets to find candidates for planets might be better better than our own and as you said they found I think it's 24. Yes within that not none of them are within a hundred light-years though. They're all quite a long way away but nevertheless. So what what time? It done is taken these criteria. So first of all, of course habitability doesn't mean that planets definitely have life. It means they've got the conditions that will be conducive to life. So I'm super habitability means that they've got the conditions that will be super conducive to life. In other words might be even better than they are here. So they looked at home terrestrial type Planet rocky planets orbiting in the basically in the Goldilocks zone of the Kepler object of Interest exoplanet wage archive. This is ur, you know capital of the of the spacecraft that that discovered a very large number of these exoplanets by the transit method they pass in front of their parent stars and didn't the light bulb so they've said okay take just take the ones that that live within the the the habitable zone know that the liquid water Zone. The Goldilocks zone is recall, Of these objects and then that what they also looked at was lifespan. How long a star last so our son took your life span roughly ten billion years and we're about halfway through it at the moment, but there are many other stars which are cooler and age less massive, but go through that hydrogen fuel much more slowly in particular what we call case. K dwarf stars. They've got much much longer life spans, but more than twenty billion years sometimes up to seventy billion years. So it means that if you have a star that's going to last all this time, you're giving life a longer chance to to evolve. You know, you're you're you're to some extent improving the chances of Life kicking off on the other hand off. You don't want the planet to be so old that it's got no geothermal heat that it score is not liquid because the liquid core is probably what generates and protracted magnetic field and you don't want to lose that you don't want to you magnetic field to wear out so that you don't have protection from the radiation from your parents star particularly, cuz these K dwarfs are quite active and not probably spits out a lot more radiation than the son does. So they make this point that the sweet spot for life is a planet that is between 5 billion and 8 billion years old. That's the the kind of Zone that they think is the sweet spot and then they talk about the size of a planet clearly. If you've got a planet that's bigger than the earth it you might expect unless it's an ocean world that it would have more land if it's dead. Little bit bigger this suggests 50% bigger than the Earth's mass you'd retain more in interior heat. And so you keep the magnetic field going and you'll still have stronger gravity a larger level of gravity which means that you could keep an atmosphere, you know more solidly than than a smaller Planet. So I thought they also point to a slightly warmer temperature. If I remember rightly the Earth's average temperature mean temperature is 15° Celsius, they suggest if you get up about five degrees then and especially if you've got more moisture in the atmosphere, you've got a better chance of life and then points to the fact that this warmth and moisture preference we find on Earth because when you look at tropical rainforests, you've got much greater biodiversity than you do else wage. What you know in in areas that are not as as warm and moist. So those are the candidates. Those are the criteria. They say that this 24 Top Planet candidates that they've dug out. None of them actually meet all their criteria included the things that we've just left listed one have one of them four of the critical characteristics apparently making it as they say possibly much more comfortable for life than our home planet so long that shoots macro says it's sometimes difficult to convey this principle of super habitable planets because we think we have the best planet. We have a great number of complex diverse life-forms and many that can survive in extreme environments. It's good at to have adaptable life, but that doesn't mean we have the best of everything. So it's really quite an interesting job. Idea the idea of super habitability and you know it when you do studies like this Andrew it essentially sheds a bit of more light on our own environment and tells us a little bit more about our own planet. And you know, what is shortcomings are in perhaps? Yes. Yeah. Well, you know, I couldn't get past the headlines Size Matters off and won't be asleep. If you could find a Planet. There's a little bit bigger as you said the gravity would work in our favor keep the interior harder for longer and the atmosphere or old better, but there's there's there's also the issue if we ever are capable of leaving Earth and and colonizing another planet. We we do have to actually find something that we can handle in terms of gravity and that's something that never portrayed well in science fiction cuz everyone can go from planet to planet in some circumstances and they all walk the same way regardless, but clearly there are dead. Huge challenges for any future Exodus to potentially livable planet outside of our our own and gravity's got to come into effect. It's you Thursday. We noticed that when you get off the planet muscle wastage. Well, the opposite would be true. If you went to a planet like Earth that was one and a half times bigger. You would have issues with the amount of gravity Shorkey. Yeah and do your knees in four star? I can tell you I'm speaking as someone who's had his own these done in by us gravity or one of them. Anyway, look just as a PostScript to this page as you probably know. I'm a big fan of colonizing other worlds, but a building our own megastructures that would allow us to to live off Earth in space in large numbers with whatever gravity would choose because these like Halo Worlds world where the gravity is artificially created by centrifugal force. So that's the way to do it. You can make your own you can go off. Now that's that's good thinking and that's probably the way migration will happen. Ultimately you'll have generations of people moving through space and and the people who get there may have been born for a long time after The Exodus began but one one particular story. I read recently the Name Escapes me off the other the people of our solar system basically traveled in hollowed-out asteroids that we've been turned into long long haul space ships off basically places where people lived and they they rotated so that was gravity and they had Gardens it was you know, it's not beyond the Realms of possibility in the distant future. I thought I'd suggest very clever thinking I think it was a Kim Stanley Robinson novel. He's very clever. He's got a very very sharp mind when it comes to potential ways of living in our solar system beyond Earth that's dead. He wrote that amazing Mars series too, which is is a pretty heavy read but fascinating bloke. Yeah. No, it's it's exciting that there are potentially livable planets out there. Hopefully, you guys that keep looking into what we might find some that are a bit closer. Which would May well be ideal for our future who knows you listening to the space and that's podcast with Andrew dunkley and Fred 1000. The truth about the haditha massacre has been covered up but not anymore. I don't you know what happened. They went into houses and killed women and children who are thinking what a mask US Marines murdered innocent civilians In Cold Blood, and at the center of it. All is 25 year old Sergeant Frank ward off and me murder in house to a new podcast from crowd Network. Space Nuts now something else. I've not mentioned in recent episodes is that on our website? You can subscribe to our mailing list. Now, you can do that through your favorite podcast distributor whether that's iTunes or apple or YouTube or Stitch or Google or iHeartRadio off Spotify or maybe through your standard RSS feed. They're always of subscribing or you can simply subscribe by filling out the the information on our mailing list, which you will find on our website Space Nuts podcast, and tap on the Subscribe option. You can also become a patron by TJ signing up to your fate via your favorite Patriot Patron platform, whether it's patreon a cast or supercast they're all available to you and the packages off. Many and varied can cost you as little as $3 a month us. But if you want to put in more it's totally up to you. And as I've said many times it is optional. The good news is, we will very very soon have a bit more to add to our our patreon Platforms in the form of bonus material. So stand by for that not far away. We got some questions to to tackle and this one sort of caught us all by surprise in in an amusing way because of I I'm trying to walk as I read it think of the accent in my mind because I think it would just enhance it so beautifully, but even our producer Hugh was was smiled when he read this one. This comes from faith in Northern Ireland Hey Zoe from Northern Ireland here. I re-watched the movie Interstellar the other day and they show how some random Planet orbiting a black hole blah blah gravity makes time slowed down. In the movie 1 hour on the planet is seven years on Earth and I was wondering if that fact or that actually can happen. If so, if you're able to watch earth live from the planet Earth looked like it was in fast forward and this is the line that humor and I really love proper love the the podcast and you definitely make my long bus Journeys to work much more enjoyable. Thank you off. That's lovely. So we thank you for reaching out and asking that question. It's a it's a we've we've had people ask questions about Interstellar many times before and I don't know if you've yet seen it Fred was just added. Yeah. Yeah. Yes. Yeah and and then so where they go down to that water planet that is orbiting a black hole the the issue becomes one of gravity and as a consequence of that the time dilation or variation causes an hour on the planet's surface to be a year seven years back on the spaceship and therefore Earth. And could that really happen? So so what this is depicting is something we call gravitational time dilation dog chewing of time by gravity and we all experience here here on the surface of the Earth X moving a little bit more slowly than it is for people up in the International Space Station cuz we're in the home that's conclusive, you know to the center of the Earth's gravitational field than they are not by much. I mean the amount of dilation is Tiny But the the idea of dilating time from one hour to seven years is it's not possible because the that amount of time dilation would require such an enormous gravitational field that you would simply be spaghettified immediately. That's the issue that you know, you would feel a much greater gravitational. All the new then your head so you get turned into spaghetti. So that that time dilation of one hour to 7 years has been decried many trying to age. I observe as of this of this movie that it yes. The idea is correct that time is passing slower, you know in in the in the wrong section of field but not by that amount that amount is just a stretch too far by a very very long way. So no not really and Thursday. Yeah you the fast-forward effects that you would in a sense should see the Earth moving in fast forward if you could see it at all, but it's but yeah, once again, it's it's a for any kind of survivable environment, which is what's being depicted on the planet. The time dilation is much dead. Which relaxes you know, something like one day becoming a microsecond longer or something like that. It's not one hour becoming seven years. Hm now is I suppose the question that pops into my mind is what is a feasible limit on time dilation gravitational dilation, you could survive or circumstances where it would be significant. I suppose I think the answer is know. If you wanted an environment that you could survive in, you know, it's it would be significant. Okay, so that taxes back to the yeah, that's yeah that's affected the discussion about discovering a livable exoplanet. Again, we talked about gravity gravity in terms of the effect on the human body. But it also you'd also have to take time into account because you and I have talked before about trying to live on Mars. Example which almost has the same amount of day and the length as as Earth but long-term be a very very horrible place to try and live because you you took Acadian rhythms wouldn't work and they they don't adjust. Well as far as I remember a discussion. So there's there's all sorts of elements to take into account if we ever move and that's why we build our own space stations where you can make it 24 hours a day, like go back Point gravitational time dilation not a thing to the extreme that they go to in in that movie. That's right. It is science fiction. It is science fiction Zoe and you can do anything in science fiction as I've discovered and may make it seem so very real. Look. It's a clever film. I love it. I really enjoy it but they do stretch the creative license quite a bit in many aspects of the job. Be but it wouldn't be science fiction if they didn't so yes now and thanks for the questions. Oh and thanks for telling us how much you enjoy the podcast now, let's move on to a question from Gareth Edwards Gareth is referring back to a discussion where you had some time ago, probably a month or so ago about the the moon we were talking about how the Moon is actually rusting. He says hi. I'm no chemist as I'm sure this question reveals in the recent episode about oxidized a walk on the moon. You mentioned that there was no hydrogen on the moon which came there was hydrogen on the moon which came from the icing polar craters, but there was no obvious local source of oxygen but given that ice is H2O y cart it also be the source of oxygen best regards Gareth. I've Got a Feeling we might have actually said that at the time or maybe we suck. Off off camera, I'm not sure but he brings up an interesting point. I think what we said Andrew was a wonder why you can't get us can't get the oxygen Palm Beach to oh so garish questions are great one and I'm pretty sure we discussed it. I think I think it was Offline that we ourselves didn't understand and I think it I think I may answer has to do with you know, it's it's to do with the chemistry and I'm not a chemist either Gareth. So you and I are in the same boat here, but it is certainly true that the lunar soil the natural lunar soil has a huge component of oxygen in it, you know, a lot of the minerals are oxides of one form or another and there's a some work on the list to do with the ultimate project that is going to the moon now people looking long-term about whether wage Can whether you can actually use the lunar soil to generate oxygen and apparently one of the mineral studies very rich in oxygen is something called ilmenite wage, which again is a bit like what we're talking about. We were talking about hematite which is iron and oxygen ilmenite is a mixture of iron titanium an oxygen and so, you know, the the whole project talks about the chemistry required to extract that so I'm not sure what the answer to your question is, but I think it is to do with the way the oxygen is bound up in these dead minerals and it may well be that the hydrogen is the hydrogen, you know, the the divorce present in the in the water of the polls that tends to to leak away so that you log Would expect you to end up with a with an oxygen-rich environment in those in those Frozen puzzles in the South and North Poles of the Moon. Why did not provide the oxygen needed to you know to oxidized iron to make hematite and they don't know the answer to that some sort of chemistry here if I get time off next week or so. I'll go back to the the original paper which talked about the rusting of the Moon and try to find out a bit more detail, but I'm sorry, I don't have the the answer at the moment. But it's a really good question. And if there's anybody out there who knows the answer don't hesitate to let us know. Absolutely. Yes. We we do love to hear from you and sometimes people have put forward comments that off and sort of we go off. Yes, of course, that's that would make sense. Yeah, but we will we welcome that as we do welcome your questions, of course via our website space wage. Podcast.com you can just message as your question the traditional way via text or you can I record your question on the am a link on our website. Just click on that. If you've got a device with a microphone built in like a smartphone or a tablet or a laptop or a computer or whatever they call them these days notebook. You can just click record and say hi. I'm Fred from Sydney and I want to know what Andrews next novel is about and we'll spend twenty-four hours talking about it for you. No questions asked but yeah, ask us anything you like and I will handle that over to Fred cuz I don't answer any which is a blessing but yes, we do appreciate your questions and your feedback. Sometimes we just get emails from people wanting to say hi and that that's fine too. And you know, I've got found a long long suffering. 290 Bengals fan which I mentioned the other day. They actually achieved a draw their first non loss of the season the other day, which I was impressed with what a dog had battle that game was but that's beside the point. I think we've reached the end of another program Fred. Thank you so much though. It's a pleasure Andrew that took me by surprise, but we are now is to go. Yeah, probably but yeah, we we've gone a bit quicker this week than we normally would, you know, very good I take the philosophy that our story it should be as long as it takes to tell we have it especially when you don't know me, but I will say that if you are a patron through patreon or supercast some bonus material coming your way very very sensitive stand by for that. We should be getting onto that very very quickly indeed. So for it, thank you very much. We'll catch you again next week. Sounds great. Thanks a lot. Take care of look after yourself. See you soon. You too. Let's Fred Watson astronomer at large part of the crew here on the Good Ship Space Nuts and for me Andrew dunkley. Have a good week. Stay safe and we'll catch you again real soon a first lady available at Apple podcast on Google podcasts Spotify. I have radio or off favorite podcast Planet. You can also stream on-demand advice.com. This has been another quality broadcast production from.com.