For centuries, human beings have looked up at the sky and wondered what was out there. How many other planets, stars and lifeforms exist without our knowledge? Even with the basic technologies of yesteryear, humans have been able to discern a great deal from the cosmos, giving us a better understanding of our universe. But now, with the most recent advancements in technology, astronomers have been making groundbreaking new discoveries seemingly every week or so. This past week has been no exception. In fact, there have been several discoveries that have earned the attention of the nation. Here are a few of the top stories from the world of astronomy.
Seeing Red on Jupiter
Since its discovery in 1830, the Great Red Spot has been a topic of great interest to astronomers. While we’ve known what the giant spot is (an enormous storm of red clouds) for years, we’ve still been mystified by what other secrets it may be hiding. And just this summer, the Juno probe was able to find some revealing information. After zooming towards the giant planet, Juno discovered the depth of the Great Red Spot. According to the information sent from Juno, the gigantic storm goes about 200 miles down into the planet’s atmosphere. What’s more fascinating is that the deeper down you go, the warmer the storm gets. Astronomers have also realized that the storm seems to be shrinking, seeing as how earlier this year its diameter was roughly 1.3 times the size of the earth’s, whereas in 1979, the diameter was twice the size.
NASA’s Big Reveal
As previously mentioned, human beings have been studying space for centuries and have come up with some fascinating discoveries, even with the basic technology of the past. But with the most cutting-edge technology, astronomers can peer deeper into space than ever before. But sometimes simply looking can not give us answers. We must interpret that information. And that’s where artificial intelligence (AI) comes in. For the last 8 years, NASA’s Kepler space telescope has been searching the universe for new planets and information, and it has been using Google’s AI in order to interpret the information that’s been collected. NASA has recently announced that it has made some amazing discoveries, and that it will be hosting a press conference this week to announce those discoveries. What could they be revealing?
As we continue to monitor the stars, we will learn more about our existence, our place in the universe, and hopefully, someday, we will find out that we are not, in fact, alone in the universe.