Episode 6, September 1, 2020

Astronomy News From Earth to the Ends of The Universe:

Was Mars the Solar System’s Largest Glacier Park?, or Graduate School Could Be A Lot More Fun Than We Thought! @1:12

     It’s a late night in Barcelona and Dr. Anna Grau Galofre, stuck by Covid away from the University of Arizona, is reminiscing over glasses of red wine about those good ol’ days in Canadian grad school — free breakfasts with guest astronomers, riding ATVs over arctic glaciers, getting insights that lead to a PhD on how many of those Martian river channels…aren’t from rivers at all.  Most actually were runoff drainage pathways from ancient glaciers, running uphill, and found only in the Martian southern hemisphere.

A Star’s Last Cry At The Event Horizon  @34:18

     It may sound like science fiction but the reality is that stars do fall into supermassive black holes in the center of some galaxies.  Dr. Tiara Hung of UC Santa Cruz watches for them and hears the cries as part of the star falls in and part is ejected from the system in high energy Tidal Disruption Events seen in Xrays, or optical or UV light…but not both.  She thinks she knows why.

Skies Over Earth September 1 – 15th  @47:03

     The first half of September is a time of division, when before a particular date, something happens, and afterwards, something else, but no gradual change.
     See the Moon pass Mars, now the fifth brightest star in the sky, on the 5th, but Mars is more than 150,000 times farther away.  How long does it take light to get from Mars if light from the Moon takes only 1.5 seconds? If you are in the right place, the Moon *covers* Mars.
     On the 7th, Labor Day in the US, Uranus can be found near the Moon.  Both Mars and Jupiter switch directions of motion in the sky.  And as Saturn sets, Venus rises–around 3AM the evening shift of bright planets Jupiter and Saturn ends and the morning shift with Venus begins but no overlap anymore.

Next episode is the Galactic Times Labor Day Special, Unusual Astronomers, Unusual Astronomy Jobs, uploaded by September 7th.

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