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    According to NASA, the moon smells like gunpowder.

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    Dawn at Ceres Guest Investigator Program announced:
    Due 10/9/14 http://bit.ly/1p4w8fZ #NASA


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    The Future of Space Suits

    NASA’s space suits haven’t fundamentally changed much in a long time. They’re basically tough balloons that get filled with you and a gas that provides the right amount of pressure to keep you’re body healthy in the vacuum of space.

    This is changing. Dava Newman, professor at MIT is currently adding the finishing touches to her new space suit design - and NASA’s very interested.

    Basically, instead of floating around in a stiff balloon, the spacesuit would provide an alternative to atmospheric pressure by using special coils that tighten into your exact body shape when they feel heat.

    The space suit will make moving around infinitely (not literal) easier. It will also make space travel ridiculously in-style.

    Putting on a space suit would be more akin to donning spandex than getting into a “you-shaped space ship”.

    It gets even more cool. There are plans to add sensors and actuators to the suits, these mechanical devices that enhance and empower movement when they feel it:

    To put simply, the potential is to give whoever wears the space suit their own little piece of super human strength.

    Just FYI to all you space naysayers, the implications in the medical world are huge too. Let one’s imagination go to work.

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    Star Cluster Trapezium in Orion Nebula

    More Info

    Credit: J. Bally, D. Devine, & R. Sutherland, D. Johnson (CITA), HST, NASA

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    Love sung through loss.

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    reading the first question on a test you know nothing about


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    Plato’s Universe

    According to a recent theory the Universe could be a dodecahedron. It is surprising that Plato used a dodecahedron as the quintessence to describe the cosmos. Plato (c. 427 BC – c. 347 BC) also stated that time had a beginning; it came together with the universe in one instant of creation.

    Plato held the view that mathematical objects really existed so that they are discovered by mathematicians (in the same way that new continents are discovered by explorers) rather than invented. Plato believed that mathematics provided the best training for thinking about science and philosophy. The five regular solids are named Platonic Solids today after Plato.

    Of the 5 solids, the tetrahedron has the smallest volume for its surface area and the icosahedron the largest; they therefore show the properties of dryness and wetness respectively and so correspond to Fire and Water. The cube, standing firmly on its base, corresponds to the stable Earth but the octahedron which rotates freely when held by two opposite vertices, corresponds to the mobile Air. The dodecahedron corresponds to the Universe because the zodiac has 12 signs (the constellations of stars that the sun passes through in the course of one year) corresponding to the 12 faces of the dodecahedron.

    "To earth, then, let us assign the cubic form, for earth is the most immovable of the four and the most plastic of all bodies, and that which has the most stable bases must of necessity be of such a nature. Now, of the triangles which we assumed at first, that which has two equal sides is by nature more firmly based than that which has unequal sides, and of the compound figures which are formed out of either, the plane equilateral quadrangle has necessarily a more stable basis than the equilateral triangle, both in the whole and in the parts. Wherefore, in assigning this figure to earth, we adhere to probability, and to water we assign that one of the remaining forms which is the least movable, and the most movable of them to fire, and to air that which is intermediate. Also we assign the smallest body to fire, and the greatest to water, and the intermediate in size to air, and, again, the acutest body to fire, and the next in acuteness to air, and the third to water. Of all these elements, that which has the fewest bases must necessarily be the most movable, for it must be the acutest and most penetrating in every way, and also the lightest as being composed of the smallest number of similar particles, and the second body has similar properties in a second degree, and the third body, in the third degree. Let it be agreed, then, both according to strict reason and according to probability, that the pyramid is the solid which is the original element and seed of fire, and let us assign the element which was next in the order of generation to air, and the third to water.We must imagine all these to be so small that no single particle of any of the four kinds is seen by us on account of their smallness, but when many of them are collected together, their aggregates are seen. And the ratios of their numbers, motions, and other properties, everywhere God, as far as necessity allowed or gave consent, has exactly perfected and harmonized in due proportion.“

    Plato: Timaeus (55d-56c) p 1181

    The posters visualize the five solids in space creating a surreal depiction of Plato’s Universe.

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    SCIENCE NEWS! There’s life way, way below Antarctica — chilling out in a subglacial lake. Just a few weeks ago, a team of scientists confirmed that half a mile beneath the Antarctic ice sheet, a bunch of tiny, single-celled organisms are alive and well… in a lake boasting sub-zero temperatures and no access to sunlight. 

    The discovery is groundbreaking, leading some to wonder if there might also be life on a similar place — Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons. 

    John Priscu is one of the lead scientists behind the study. In a talk at TEDxBozeman, he explains what it’s like to be a scientist drilling though thousands of feet of ice while living in a tent in Antarctica. 

    Watch the whole talk here»

    Photos courtesy of NASA

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    We see clouds so often that it’s easy to forget how amazing they are. Thankfully German astronaut and geophysicist Alexander Gerst is currently aboard the International Space Station where he often spends his free time taking countless extraordinary photos of the Earth as it’s whizzing by 205 miles below.

    Gerst is particularly fond of photographing dramatic shadows cast by cloud formations - something that we cannot see down here on Earth. These stunning photos remind how awesome clouds are as they cast shadows that stretch for thousands of miles across the planet’s surface. Shadows so long that they eventually disappear into the black horizon.

    Follow Alexander Gerst’s Twitter feed for new photos shared daily.

    [via Colossal]

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