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Dark Matter X-Ray Image Above Courtesy of NASA/SAO/CXC

There are a number of theories for dark matter, what it is composed of and why we cannot see it.  The only thing astronomers know for sure is that something in the universe is causing galaxies and distant stars to move in ways that cannot be explained and defy detailed calculations.

For example,

-stars at the outer parts of galaxies are moving at the same speed as stars at the inner parts of the galaxy.  These inner stars are travelling much faster that calculated, indicating that there is an additional force at work.

-light from distant galaxies and stars is so immensely distorted by an "invisible mass" that it creates additional "false" images of the distant galaxy or star. This "lensing" was 1st predicted by Einstein but was never seen until viewed by the Hubble Space telescope. The distortions have been calculated to be far greater than can be explained by the visible matter present.

-the most distant galaxies in the universe are travelling away from us at a faster rate than those galaxies that are closer. A possible explanation of this yet unexplained phenomenon, is dark matter which is counter-acting gravity on a large scale.

Dark matter comprises about 25% of all the matter in the universe, dark energy comprises about 70% and all visible matter comprises only 5% of the universe.

Astronomers have not been able to detect dark matter because it does not interact with light of any wave length (i.e. visible, ultra-violet, infra-red, x-ray, radio, gamma ray etc.). 

A new theory postulates that dark matter may consist of particles that are electromagnetic. They are called "Majorana Particles" and create a doughnut shaped electromagnetic field called an "anapole".

This rare form of electromagetic field does not have a positive and negative charge. It is electrically neutral and therefore, has eluded detection thus far.

Al Maddalena

Maddalena Environmental Inc.

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Image compliments of NASA

Voyager 1 was launched September 5, 1977 and was intended to explore the outer solar system. It has completed its mission, providing the only close-up views of Saturn, Neptune, Uranus and their moons. It continues its mission, getting farther and farther from Earth, but continues to send information back to Earth using its radio antenna.

In 1990 it passed Pluto and the outer part of our solar system. At this point, it turned its camera back toward the Earth to take the famous picture of "The Pale Blue Dot".

This picture (below) inspired by Carl Sagan, shows the Earth from the edge of our solar system, 6 Billion kilometers away.

Image compliments of NASA

It was intended to provide a perspective of the Earth from the edge of the Solar System. When compared with galaxies and the rest of space, we now have a very good appreciation of how small our world really is.

Voyager 1 is now headed for interstellar space and will reach the Oort Cloud in approximately 300 years (see below).

Here are some important facts about Voyager 1:

-Voyager 1 has now travelled farther than anyone or anything in history, finally reaching insterstellar space.

-It is travelling at 37 km/s. It acheived this velocity through the gravitional assistance from Saturn and Jupiter.

-It has a small on-board nuclear reactor to power its systems because it is so far from the sun, that solar cells would not be practical. 

-It uses plutonium 238 for its thermo-electric generators that will continue to operate until 2025. The half-life of this plutonium isotope is short (only 88 years). Therefore its potential nuclear contamination should diminish reasonably quickly and will not likely contaminate other worlds.

This image shows plutonium 238 glowing under its own heat (image compliments of en.wikipedia.org).

-plutonium 238 is extracted from spent fuel rods of nuclear reactors.

-Voyager 1 carries a gold plated record of the sounds and languages of Earth. It also provides Earth's approximate location in the Milky Way Galaxy. It is intended to provide information on our world and its mission to any alien intelligent species it may encounter in the future (see below).

-currently it is not headed for any particular star system and will likely travel the Milky Way Galaxy forever until it encounters something.

-it now takes 17 hours for the radio signal from Voyager 1 to reach Earth.

Al Maddalena

Maddalena Environmental Inc.

P.S. If you're trying to make money online and have not yet succeeded, you should check out THE EASIEST WAY TO MAKE MONEY ONLINE

WATCH A FREE WEBINAR HERE.

 

 

We had a great time fishing for Jumbo Yellow Perch, May 2014. The jumbo perch school up in the spring and in the fall every year in Lake Erie. They school in areas of about 50-60 feet of water off Point Abino, Port Colborne, Port Maitland, and other ports along the north shore of Lake Erie.  Here's a video of a great trip we had in May 2014.

We had a great time during a beautifal calm day on Lake Erie. Check out the good time here.

Al Maddalena

Maddalena Environmental Inc.

P.S. If you're trying to make money online but have had limited success, you should check out the easiest way to make money online.

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We have all heard of the asteroid impact that caused the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary, but probably very few people know the evidence to support this.

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.org

Here are the facts:

- In 1980 a research team led by physicist Luis Alvarez, his son geologist Walter Alvarez and chemists Frank Asaro and Helen Michels discovered that sedimentary rock layers found all over the world at the Cretaceous–Paleogene (formerly Tertiary) boundary contained high concentrations of iridium.

-iridium is a metal that is common in asteroids and meteorites, but is extremely rare in the Earth's crust.

-samples of clay with this high iridium are similar all over the world in the same Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary rock

Image courtesy of www.geol.umd.edu

Image courtesy of www.scielo.org.mx

Image compliments of www.scielo.org.mx

-Such widespread, world-wide physical evidence is most convicing, that in fact, the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction was likely caused by the impact of an asteroid approximately 10 km in diameter.

-some years later, a large impact crater was discovered beneath the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, however it was largely covered by the limestone rock of the pensinsula that was deposited and then hardened in the last 65 million years. This is thought to be the crater from the asteroid.

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.org

-the age of the asteroid impact (based on the radioactive decay of argon for rock in the crater) was reported by Paul Renne of the Berkeley Geochronology Center. He indicated that the asteroid impact was 66,038,000 years ago, + or - 11,000 years.

The release of energy of such a catastrophic event would have been equivalent to about 1 x 108 megatons or 2 Million times greater than the largest nuclear bomb ever tested.

While this asteroid impact caused the extinction 75% of all life on Earth, this allowed small mammals to thrive, giving rise eventually to all human life!

Had it not been for this asteroid impact, it is quite likely that mammals and humans would not have become the dominant species on Earth!

Al Maddalena

Maddalena Environmental Inc.

P.S. If you're trying to make money online and have had limited success, you should check out THE EASIEST WAY TO MAKE MONEY ONLINE.

You can watch a FREE webinar here.

 

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NASA tracks many near-Earth objects that orbit our Sun in their Near Earth Object Program. This includes asteroids and comets that are large enough to cause catastrophic damage if they collide with Earth. As a minimum, NASA tracks everything in our solar system that is 1 km in diameter or larger. Although they have detected smaller asteroids, 1 kilometer is considered to be the threshold that could cause extinction of the human race. Anything smaller that impacts Earth would cause immense local damage, but is considered survivable to humans. 

NASA tracks these objects because their orbits are typically elliptical around the Sun taking them to areas around the outer gas giants of our solar system (ie. Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and their moons. If any of these objects come too close to these giants, the resulting gravitational effects could change their trajectory.

This implies that the orbits of these near-Earth objects could CHANGE. This means even a small "tug" on these objects by the gravity of a gas giant or its moon could be enough to change the trajectory of these objects.

Also, the affect of the gravitional "tug" may not be evident right away. It may be evident only after the object makes numerous orbits in the future. So NASA tracks the orbits most of these and models them so they know the future potential for a collision with Earth.

When you look at the diagram below (compliments of neofuel.com), the shear number of near-Earth objects being tracked by NASA is staggering. However, the scale of this drawing is very large and in reality, all the objects shown on this diagram have very little chance of colliding with Earth, at the present time. However, NASA continues to track all these objects in case their orbits change.

 

NASA's Near Earth Object Program is essential in tracking all objects that have the potential to strike the Earth in the future. With this program, NASA would be able to predict the probability of an Earth collision and would have enough time to plan and launch a counter-measure.

Assuming the size of the object is small enough, the most likely counter-measure would be some sort of "impactor" sent to collide with the object in hopes of altering its trajectory enough to clear the Earth.

Yes, this implies that NASA would not be able to do anything against objects that are immense (i.e. like objects the size of the moon). There is nothing that can be done against objects this large. 

In 2004, it was predicted that an asteroid 325 meters in diameter had a 3% chance of impacting the Earth in 2029. (This asteroid was named Apophis, for the Greek god of the underworld and enemy of the Egyptian god of the Sun, Ra). More detailed calculations of the trajectory of Apophis have now eliminated the possibility of an Earth collision, but it is still being tracked.

As stated earlier, it is impossible to predict gravitional effects on these objects in the future.

Al Maddalena

Maddalena Environmental Inc.

If you're trying to make money online and have had minimal success to date, you should check out THE EASIEST WAY TO MAKE MONEY ONLINE.

Watch a FREE webinar here.

 

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