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Side Note: Remember last night’s question about moons having moons of their own? As it turns out, new research may suggest the possibility of moons also having life of their own in recent exoplanet and exomoons simulations as implied in this SPACE article.
Imaged Above: According to the Planetary Habitability Laboratory’s recently released periodic table of exoplanets, 16 warm Neptunes and 96 warm Jovians lay within their star’s habitable zone. If they managed to capture rocky Earth-sized moons on their journey inward, such moons would be able to hold liquid water, and be potential wells of life. Credit: PHL
While astronomers continue to search for potentially habitable alien planets, they’re expanding the hunt to include moons that could host life as well.
Three new computer simulations may help researchers identify rocky satellites beyond our solar system that could harbor water on their surfaces, if their parent planets circle close enough to their stars.
When scientists working with NASA’s Kepler space telescope announced the discovery of 1,235 planetary candidates in February 2011, the list included 37 Neptune-sized planets and 10 Jupiter-sized planets within their star’s habitable zones — the region of space where water can exist as a liquid on a rocky planet. Though gas giants would not boast liquid water on their surface, their moons might.
According to David Kipping, of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, a good-size rocky moon at the right distance from its star “ticks all the boxes for our wish list of habitable conditions.”
Kipping, one of the members of the Hunt for Exomoons with Kepler team, authored and utilized one of three computer simulations designed to help astronomers pick such an “exomoon” out of the spacecraft’s data.
- 1920’s – the record business complained about radio. The argument was because radio is free, you can’t compete with free. No one was ever going to buy music again.
- 1940’s – movie studios had to divest their distribution channel – they owned over 50% of the movie theaters in the U.S. “It’s all over,” complained the studios. In fact, the number of screens went from 17,000 in 1948 to 38,000 today.
- 1950’s – broadcast television was free; the threat was cable television. Studios argued that their free TV content couldn’t compete with paid.
- 1970’s – Video Cassette Recorders (VCR’s) were going to be the end of the movie business. The movie businesses and its lobbying arm MPAA fought it with “end of the world” hyperbola. The reality? After the VCR was introduced, studio revenues took off like a rocket. With a new channel of distribution, home movie rentals surpassed movie theater tickets.
- 1998 – the MPAA got congress to pass the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), making it illegal for you to make a digital copy of a DVD that you actually purchased.
- 2000 – Digital Video Recorders (DVR) like TiVo allowing consumer to skip commercials was going to be the end of the TV business. DVR’s reignite interest in TV.
- 2006 - broadcasters sued Cablevision (and lost) to prevent the launch of a cloud-based DVR to its customers.
- Today it’s the Internet that’s going to put the studios out of business. Sound familiar?
Between 2005 and 2010 employment in New York’s high-tech sector grew by nearly 30%. Google alone has about 1,200 engineers in the city.
Started, rolling and building - Daily delight
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Have a great year all year, every year.