DiscoverAstronomy News with The Cosmic Companion
Astronomy News with The Cosmic Companion

Astronomy News with The Cosmic Companion

Author: The Cosmic Companion

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The latest astronomy and space news from around the world. PLUS casual interviews with astronomers and other scientists seeking to understand the cosmos. All delivered in an easy-to-understand style with a dash of humor. Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
60 Episodes
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For our first interview of our fourth season, we talk to Dr. Jake Turner  of Cornell University, discussing his work finding the first hints of a  magnetic field surrounding a planet in an alien solar system.    But first, we examine an unusual radio signal coming from our closest  stellar neighbor that looks like it may have been created by an  intelligent species – but who? Next, we take a look at something you  might not expect – 2020 was, in fact, the shortest year in decades. We  will also head out to the Red Planet, where we see the largest canyon in  the Solar System in unprecedented detail.   New episodes (nearly) every Tuesday!  Subscribe today and never miss an episode. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
For the first episode of our fourth season,, we have a special episode  of Astronomy News with The Cosmic Companion, as we look forward to the  Top 10 astronomy and space stories we can expect to see unfold in 2021.  Learn about the two lunar eclipses happening in 2021, the return of  Russia to the Moon, the launch of Artemis 1, and much more!   Listen to the podcast here, or watch the video version of this episode on YouTube.  Happy New Year! --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
For this final episode of our third season, we welcome Dr. Paul Kalas from UC Berkeley to the show. He is an astronomer studying the exoplanet HD 106906, which might resemble an unseen ninth planet in our own solar system. But first, we journey far out in space and back in time, as astronomers lay their sights on the most distant – and oldest – galaxy ever seen. Closer to home, we examine the discovery of hexamine – a chemical critical to the development of life – inside an asteroid. Finally, we listen in on radio waves from the exoplanet Tau Boötis b, and learn how it shows the first-ever evidence for a magnetic field surrounding a planet in an alien solar system. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
Hello and welcome back to Astronomy News with The Cosmic Companion. This week, we welcome Professor Seiji Sugita of the University of Tokyo to the show. He is a researcher on the Hayabusa2 mission which recently brought the first large sample of an asteroid to Earth. But first, we take a look at a new study teaching us how spiders react to living in space. Next, we will journey to the exoplanet HD 106906 b, and learn what it could teach us about a possible unseen planet at the edge of our solar system. Finally, we will take a look at the first large samples of an asteroid ever to arrive on Earth, before we talk to one of the researchers on this historic mission.   Learn more: https://thecosmiccompanion.net --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we welcome Dr. Michael Wurm from the Borexino Collaboration  to the show. He recently led a new study examining neutrino emissions  from the Sun, revealing details of the nuclear furnace burning at the  heart of our parent star.   But first, we head out to the outskirts of the Solar System, where the long-lived Voyager spacecraft have seen quick-moving particles driven off the surface of the Sun. We will also journey back in time, to the formation of the Moon, as researchers using supercomputer simulations recreate a titanic collision between the Earth and a Mars-sized body four billion years ago. Then, we will take a look up in the sky, readying ourselves for the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn taking place on the Winter Solstice. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
On December 21, 2020, the two largest planets in our solar system will appear just one-tenth of a degree apart, or one-fifth of the diameter of a full Moon. This is the closest visible conjunction of the planets seen since the year 1226. We take a look at what to expect, and how to best prepare for this once-in-a-lifetime celestial event. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we welcome Dr. Ezat Heydari to the show. He is a professor of  geoscience at Jackson State University. We will discuss his work  showing evidence of a possible megaflood on Mars in the ancient solar  system.   But, first, we examine fusion processes at the core of our Sun, using a  detector buried deep underground. We also take a look at a sunspot that  became visible from Earth on Thanksgiving, and learn how astronomers saw  it when it was still on the other side of the Sun. Finally, we will  take our first - but by no means last - look at a great conjunction of  planets coming soon to a sky near you. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we welcome Wen-fai Fong of Northwestern University to the  show, talking about her work studying kilonova explosions and collisions  of neutron stars.   But first, we will look at new findings showing the Universe is getting  hotter, and we will examine the mysterious Blue Ring Nebula. Next, we  will journey back in time to the ancient solar system, when a massive  megaflood ravished the surface of Mars. Finally, we will bid a sad  farewell to one of the greatest telescopes in the world, as the Arecibo radio Telescope is slated for demolition.   Watch the video version of this episode: https://youtu.be/sqYE1AX-E9A Please subscribe to this podcast for weekly episodes. For more details on space and astronomy news, please visit https://thecosmiccompanion.net or http://thecosmiccompanion.com. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we welcome Laura Fackrell, geochemist at the University of  Georgia, to the show. We will be discussing her work developing soil for  farms on Mars, capable of growing crops to feed interplanetary  colonists. We will also journey out beyond our solar system, where Voyager 2 hears from NASA for the first time in months. We examine a tiny asteroid  traveling through space along with Mars that is a near-perfect geological match for our Moon. Finally, we will explore the Solar System from our own back yards, as all seven planets visible in the sky can be seen this week from most places on Earth. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
Amateur astronomers have a rare treat this week, as all seven planets  visible in the sky can be observed over the course of a single night.  Here's how to find every planet in the sky visible to amateur  astronomers any night this week.    Subscribe to this channel and never miss a story! --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we are joined by Dr. Oskar Elek from the University of  California, Santa Cruz. We will be discussing his work seeking to  understand the Cosmic Web – the largest structures in the Universe –  through computer modeling and humble slime mold.    We'll also take a look at the future of farming on Mars, as a new study  examines how to turn Martian topsoil into a fertile growing medium for  Martian colonists of the future. We will examine the origin of water on  planets, and find clues to the chemistry of the early Solar System in a  Martian meteorite. And, in the dark recesses of the early solar system,  we see an ancient ice planet that may have forever shaped our family of  planets before heading out to the void of space. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
Water on the Moon has been seen before in dark craters. Now, a new study finds water in a crater exposed to sunlight. We explore the finding, and SOFIA - the airborne telescope that made the discovery.  Learn more at https://thecosmiccompanion.net/water-on-the-moon-isnt-just-hiding-in-the-shadows --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
Dr. Meridith Joyce of Australian National University joins us on the  show, talking about her new finding showing that the red giant star Betelgeuse is both smaller and closer than we believed.    We'll also take a look at the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, which touched down  last week on the surface of the asteroid Bennu. We examine a  new study identifying 1,000 worlds where extraterrestrial astronomers  could – theoretically –  easily see signs of life on Earth. Also, one  exoplanet the size of Neptune is found orbiting far too close to its  parent star. And we take a look at findings from the ALMA network of  radio telescopes, revealing the role volcanoes play in forming the  atmosphere of Io, one of the largest moons of Jupiter. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we are joined by Dr. Roberto Gilli from the National  Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, speaking with us from Italy.  We will talk about his recent discovery of six galaxies huddled around a  supermassive black hole in the early Universe.    But first, we take a look at the massive red giant star Betelgeuse,  finding it's not as big –or as close to exploding – as we thought.  Speaking of exploding stars (because, why not?) we take a look at a pair  of massive stars doomed to end their lives in a dramatic fashion. And,  we will take a look up at our night sky, and learn how to see a meteor  shower happening this week. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we are joined by Dr. Maciek Wielgus, astronomer at Harvard  University, speaking to us from Gdansk, Poland. We will discuss his work  revealing glittering around the supermassive black hole at the center  of the M 87 galaxy. But first, we look at a new study identifying 24 exoplanets that appear  to be even friendlier to life than Earth. We also see how superflares –  powerful eruptions from stars – behave, and learn how they might affect  life on other worlds. Then, we take a look at OSIRIS-REx, NASA's first  attempt to collect material from an asteroid, as the revolutionary  spacecraft readies to touch the surface of the asteroid Bennu. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This is a very special global episode on Astronomy News with The Cosmic  Companion, as we talk with Dr. Amanda Karakas of Monash University,  speaking from Melbourne, Australia, as well as Dr. Chiaki Kobayashi,  from the University of Hertfordshire, joining us from London. These  researchers were at the heart of the new study showing how much of the  gold in the Universe was produced by a particular type of supernova  explosion.   But first, we examine a stunning glitter seen around a supermassive  black hole. We also journey to Mars, where the Mars Express Orbiter  finds three more salty lakes beneath the surface of that world. The Red  Planet is also an easy find in the sky this week, and we will take a  look at how to find it. We will also journey back in time, where (and  when!) we will see six galaxies huddling around an ancient quasar, and  learn how the largest structures in the Universe were formed. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
Astronomers recently found six galaxies orbiting a distant quasar from  the early age of the Universe. What can this tell us about the formation  of supermassive black holes? Dr. Roberto Gilli from the National Institute for Astrophysics in Italy will join us October 20 to talk about this discovery.   --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we are joined by Dr. Natalie Hinkel, planetary astrophysicist  at the Southwest Research Institute. We will talk about her work showing how we might look for phosphorus around other stars in the  search for extraterrestrial life.   We will also talk about the discovery of phosphine in the atmosphere of Venus, and what that means in the search for life on other worlds. We will learn about a new study showing how much of the gold in the  Universe was formed, and we take an in-depth look at how phosphorus in  the space around stars could help astronomers find life on planets in  nearby solar systems. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we welcome Dr. Christopher Berry to the show. He is an astrophysicist who recently helped discover the first intermediate-mass black hole ever seen by astronomers. We will also look at an ancient galaxy that looks normal, and talk about why that's so  unusual. We learn of an active environment around the asteroid Bennu, and we see how our ideas of dark matter may change, due to an unexpected bending of light. Video version of this episode: https://youtu.be/vMGk_k93IKA --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
This week, we welcome Dr. Dimitra Atri to the show. He is an astrophysicist from New York University Abu Dhabi, and we will be discussing his work showing how life might survive just beneath the surface of Mars, aided by galactic cosmic rays. We will also look at how astronomers found a type of black hole they always expected to find as well as one thought impossible. We examine the most detailed images ever recorded of the Sun, taken by astronomers at Europe's largest solar telescope. Lastly, we will journey to the Moon, where investigators recently found hematite – a mineral which forms from water and free oxygen – both of which are rare on the lunar surface. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/the-cosmic-companion/support
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