Skip to main content

Citizen scientists find cold new world near solar system (hindu)

Bob Fletcher, a teacher in Australia, was the first to spot a very faint object moving across images made public by NASA

A brown dwarf over 100 light years away from the Sun has been discovered using a new citizen science tool that helps astronomers pinpoint new worlds lurking in the outer reaches of our solar system.

Just six days after the launch of the Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 website in February, four different users alerted the science team to the curious object, whose presence has since been confirmed via an infrared telescope.


“I was so proud of our volunteers as I saw the data on this new cold world coming in,” said Jackie Faherty, a senior scientist at the American Museum of Natural History and one of Backyard World’s researchers.

“It was a feel-good moment for science,” said Ms. Faherty.

The Backyard Worlds project lets anyone with a computer and an Internet connection flip through images taken by NASA’s Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) spacecraft.

If an object is close enough to Earth, it will appear to “jump” when multiple images taken of the same spot in the sky a few years apart are compared.

The goal for Backyard Worlds volunteers — of which there are more than 37,000 — is to flag the moving objects they see in these digital flipbooks for further investigation by the science team. So far, volunteers have classified more than 4 million flipbooks.

Days after the Backyard Worlds website debuted on February 15, Bob Fletcher, a science teacher in Australia, identified a very faint object moving across the WISE images.

It was soon flagged by three other citizen scientists from Russia, Serbia and the U.S.

After some initial investigation by the research team, which originally called the object “Bob’s dwarf”, Ms. Faherty confirmed that it was a previously unknown brown dwarf just a few hundred degrees warmer than Jupiter. The authors of the research published in the Astrophysical Journal Letters said that sky surveys had missed this object because it was too faint.

Failed stars

Brown dwarfs, sometimes called “failed stars”, are spread throughout the Milky Way.

“Brown dwarfs are strikingly similar to Jupiter so we study their atmospheres in order to look at what weather on other worlds might look like,” said Jonathan Gagne, a Backyard Worlds team member from the Carnegie Institution for Science.

“It is possible that there is a cold world closer than what we believe to be the closest star to the sun. Given enough time, I think our volunteers are going to help to complete the map of our solar neighbourhood,” Ms. Faherty said.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Indian Polity Elections (MCQ )

1. Who of the following has the responsibility of the registration of voters
a) Individual voters
b) Government
c) Election commission
d) Corporations


2. Democracy exists in India, without peoples participation and co operation democracy will fail. This implies that
a) Government should compel people to participate and cooperate with it
b) People from the government
c) People should participate and cooperate with the government
d) India should opt for the presidential system


3. Which of the following are not the functions of the election commission
1) Conduct of election for the post of the speaker and the deputy speaker, Lok sabha and the deputy chairman, Rajya sabha
2) Conduct of elections to the state legislative assemblies
3) Deciding on all doubts and disputes arising out of elections

a) 1 and 2
b) 1 and 3
c) 2 and 3
d) 2

4. Which of the following electoral systems have not been adopted for various elections in India
1) System of direct elections on the basis of adult suffrage
2…

El Nino may make a comeback in 2017, but unlikely to affect southwest monsoon (downtoearth,)

In 2016, the world witnessed the strongest El Nino on record, which resulted in above average temperatures. The year experiences record-breaking heat for nine consecutive months. It had also ruined the Indian monsoon for two years. After two successive droughts in 2014 and 2015, last year witnessed erratic rainfall both in terms of geographical spread and time. Thanks to El Nino, the southwest monsoon in 2014 and 2015 witnessed a deficit of 11 and 14 per cent respectively.

While the 2016 monsoon season in India saw 97 per cent rainfall, it was far less than the 106 per cent that the India Meteorological Department (IMD) had forecast in July. The lesser-than-expected rainfall, especially in the second half of the monsoon season, has been attributed to the absence of a strong La Nina phenomenon in the equatorial Pacific Ocean that is known to help the Indian monsoon.

According to a recent forecast by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), there’s a 50 per cent chan…

Current Affairs MCQ for UPSC Exams – 21 December 2016

Q.1- Which of the following is/are correct regarding Nirbhaya missile?

1. It is a cruise missile
2. It is hypersonic in speed
A. 1 only
B. 2 only
C. Both
D. None

Q.2- Khanjar-III is military exercise between which of the following countries?

A. India and Russia
B. Russia and China
C. India and Kyrgyzstan
D. Russia and Afghanistan

Q.3- UPI has been in news recently, what is the full form of UPI?

A. Unified Payment Interchange
B. Unified Payment Interface
C. Unified process interchange
D. Unified process interface
 .
.
.
.

.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.

.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
Answer  1-A, 2 -C, 3-B