tpods of 2013 archive

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Galaxy clusters such as Abell 2151 in the constellation Hercules are powerful X-ray emitters.
Credit: Tony Hallas
December 31, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 31, 2013 What takes place in thunderstorms on Earth is most likely a smaller version of large scale phenomena. “I have always believed that astrophysics should be the extrapolation of laboratory physics, that we must begin from the … Continue reading
A ‘Spider Gorget’ from a mound of the Mississippian Culture 7 miles from St. Louis (St. Clair County, Illinois, United States of America) (C. 800-1500 CE).
December 29, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Dec 30, 2013 Shell gorgets were found in mounds of the prehistoric Mississippian culture, often still reposing on the chest of the wearer. The spider is a recurrent theme on gorgets in mounds in Illinois, Missouri and Tennessee. The … Continue reading
Circinus X-1 in X-rays (blue) and radio (purple). Background is from the Digitized Sky Survey. Credit:
X-ray: NASA/CXC/Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison/S. Heinz et al; Optical: DSS; Radio: CSIRO/ATNF/ATCA
December 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 27, 2013 Neutron stars are not viable explanations for energetic objects. Recently, the Chandra observatory detected what they are calling the “youngest” X-ray binary star radiating massive amounts of energy into space. The radiation is in X-ray wavelengths, … Continue reading
How a rotating flagellum anchors to the cell wall. Credit: David DeRosie
December 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 26, 2013 Rotating motors propel some bacteria. Some bacteria can swim through their tiny worlds. They accomplish this feat with the aid of spinning propellors called “flagella”. The species of bacteria with this capability that is most familiar … Continue reading
Stars in this globular cluster are supposed to have evolved into a bright giant phase. Recent observations reveal that 70% of them didn’t. Credit: ESO
December 24, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Dec 24, 2013 A second generation of stars in the globular cluster NGC 6752 stopped evolving. Perhaps they’re waiting for a better theory. The idea that stars evolve is one of those unjustifiable preconceptions with which observations are interpreted … Continue reading
abell 85_universe simulation
December 23, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 23, 2013 Observations better fit the Electric Universe theory. In previous Thunderbolts Picture of the Day articles about the existence of “dark matter” it was noted that it is primarily an add-on, or ad-hoc theory, so that the current … Continue reading
Image of CW Leonis, also known as IRC +10216, was obtained with the SPIRE and PACS instruments on the Herschel Space Observatory. It combines observations at wavelengths of 160 µm (blue; PACS), 250 µm (green; SPIRE) and 350 µm (red; SPIRE).
December 20, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 20, 2013 Some stars are said to be surrounded by haloes of hot water mixed with carbon dust. Astronomers using the Herschel infrared space observatory discovered a putative cloud of hot water surrounding a giant star in the … Continue reading
The Eagle Nebula (M16). Credit: T.A.Rector (NRAO/AUI/NSF and NOAO/AURA/NSF) and B.A.Wolpa (NOAO/AURA/NSF)
December 19, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 19, 2013 Spiraling filaments suggest electric currents in space. Dust at a temperature near absolute zero shows up in the image above as a blue fog deep in the heart of the Eagle nebula. The Eagle nebula, located … Continue reading
Putative most distant object in the visible Universe, labeled z8_GND_5296. Credit: V. Tilvi, S.L. Finkelstein, C. Papovich, A. Koekemoer, CANDELS, and STSCI/NASA.
December 18, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 18, 2013 The Big Bang theory dominates cosmological theories. A recent press release announced that astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope and the twin, 10-meter Keck telescopes, have found an object 13.1 billion light-years from Earth, making it … Continue reading
The Rotten Egg Nebula. Credit: NASA, ESA, William B. Latter (SIRTF Science Center/California Institute of Technology), John H. Bieging (University of Arizona), Casey Meakin (University of Arizona), A.G.G.M. Tielens (Kapteyn Astronomical Institute), Aditya Dayal (IPAC/NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory), Joseph L. Hora (Center for Astrophysics), and Douglas M. Kelly (University of Arizona).
December 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 17, 2013 The Universe behaves according to the laws of plasma dynamics. In every science journal discussing the behavior of planetary nebulae, the prevailing opinion usually involves gases and dust “blowing” through them, as well as “winds” created … Continue reading
Three X-class solar flares in one day. Credit: NASA/SDO
December 16, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 16, 2013 An X-2 class solar flare recently missed a direct impact with Earth. Heliophysicists classify solar flares according to their brightness in X-ray wavelengths. C-class flares are the smallest on the scale, with X-ray measurements in the … Continue reading
Wallace Line
December 13, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
  Dec 13, 2013 Between Bali and its neighbouring island, Lombok, is a slim ten mile sea channel. The channel is the start of the thousands-mile-long Wallace line. It is not only a dividing geological etching beneath the sea, it … Continue reading
Galaxy cluster RDCS 1252.9-2927. Purple color indicates x-ray emissions.
Credit: X-ray NASA/CXC/ESO/P.Rosati et al. Optical: ESO/VLT/P.Rosati et al.
December 12, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 12, 2013 Was the early Universe powered by “dark matter annihilation”? According to modern cosmologists, the Universe is composed primarily of dark matter. More than 95% of all that exists is unseen and undetectable by the most sensitive … Continue reading
Artist's impression of "magnetic bubbles" surrounding the Solar System
December 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 11, 2013 “Bubbles” of magnetic energy are said to surround the Sun’s heliosheath. “In all our quest of greatness, like wanton boys, whose pastime is their care, we follow after bubbles, blown in the air.” — John Webster … Continue reading
Relaxation phase of a super-exploding double layer. Credit: X-ray (NASA/CXC/NCSU/K.Borkowski et al.); Optical (DSS)
December 9, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Dec 10, 2013 NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory recently discovered this object, which the dusty plasma near the center of the Milky Way obscures in optical light. X-rays penetrate the dust: low-energy signals are red, intermediate-energy signals are green, and high-energy … Continue reading
Galaxy M61 displays hexagonal interlacing. Credit: Hillary Mathis, N.A.Sharp/NOAO/AURA/NSF
December 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 09, 2013 Some galaxies exhibit polygonal structures. The term “diocotron instability” is not generally well known. Its use is confined to the field of plasma physics and refers to the distortions that occur when two sheets of plasma … Continue reading
El Capitan, a giant granite monolith in Yosemite National Park. Image Credit: Mike Murphy.
December 6, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Dec 6, 2013 Stones as large as mountains could be physical evidence for interplanetary lightning bolts on Earth. In the last installment about immense solitary stones that are found all over the world, it was noted that several of them … Continue reading
Axial discharge from a galaxy’s central plasmoid emits high-energy X-ray and radio “light.”Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/A.Siemiginowska et al; Optical: NASA/STScI; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA
December 5, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Dec 05, 2013 Modern instruments enable astronomers to look at the universe in wavelengths of light beyond human biological limitations. Astronomers are surprised that the x-ray and radio images are different from what they expected. Although they’re looking in a different … Continue reading
Ben Bulben, County Sligo, Ireland. Image: Andrew C. Parnell
December 4, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 04, 2013 On every continent are examples of isolated stone mountains that are not easy to explain. Mount Augustus in Australia is an example of a sandstone monolith that could be the largest of those monoliths that also … Continue reading
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona
December 3, 2013 by Mel Acheson
Dec 03, 2013 Experimenters slid blocks of dry ice down sand dunes and reproduced some of the features of the long straight grooves on Martian hillsides.* The smart folks at Jet Propulsion Laboratory are to be commended for not only … Continue reading
A galaxy plot indicating the theoretical “cold dark matter” structure of the universe
out to 1.8 billion light-years. Credit: M. White, University of California, Berkeley.
December 2, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Dec 02, 2013 In the gravitational model of the universe, “dark matter” attraction pulls galaxies into filaments. Birkeland currents could be a better explanation. A paper in the astronomical journals and popular press identifies an area of space as a “huge … Continue reading
The Fornax galaxy cluster. ESO/J. Emerson/VISTA.
Acknowledgment: Cambridge Astronomical Survey Unit.
November 29, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 29, 2013 Astronomers claim to have found the galaxies missing in their earlier observations. “Astronomers always knew they were missing some fraction of the galaxies in Lyman-alpha surveys, but for the first time we now have a measurement. … Continue reading
Strange weathering in basalt lava deposits. Image credit: Mike Weiss
November 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 27, 2013 Not all the Southern Continent is frozen. It has areas like other deserts in the world: barren, dry and lifeless. Antarctica is known for being an ice-bound continent covered with glaciers and sheets of ice four … Continue reading
The Alps from space. Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC
November 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 26, 2013 It is a commonly held belief that events on Earth progress according to cycles. One of the principle tenets of Electric Universe theory is that Earth and the Solar System have experienced catastrophic reordering and resurfacing … Continue reading
Artist rendition of the twin Van Allen probes studying Earth’s electromagnetic fields.
November 24, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Nov 25, 2013 On October 9, 2013 the Juno spacecraft flew by Earth on its way to Jupiter, where its passage through the ionosphere was detected. NASA launched the Juno Mission to Jupiter on August 5, 2011. After traveling out … Continue reading
Cosmic rays could be generated in the same way as high-altitude "sprites" create positive ions. Image Credit: Oscar van der Velde
November 22, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 22, 2013 Observations suggest that cosmic rays are not produced by supernova explosions. Cosmic rays are ionized particles, or fragmented atoms. Electrons are stripped from atoms, leaving them free to move, with positively charged nuclei remaining. The majority … Continue reading
Supposed water features in Arabia Terra on Mars. Credit: NASA/Malin Space Science Systems
November 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 21, 2013 Structures on Mars that resemble Earth’s hydrothermal vents or eroded mounds have sparked renewed interest in water flowing over the Red Planet. Mounds on Mars are thought to be the remains of ancient hydrothermal vents because they have a … Continue reading
Interacting ring galaxies designated as Arp 147. Credit: NASA, ESA, and M. Livio (STScI)
November 20, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 20, 2013 If distance calculations based on redshift are inaccurate, what does that mean for the consensus opinion about the age or the size of the Universe? In the 1960s astronomers discovered quasi-stellar objects, better known as quasars. … Continue reading
Cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation projected onto a sphere. Credit: NASA/WMAP
November 19, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 19, 2013 How big is the Universe? How old is it? Today, cosmology is dominated by the Big Bang theory. The theory’s major premise is that there was once a void containing no matter, no space, and no … Continue reading
Messier crater (left) and Messier A from Apollo 11. Credit: Lunar and Planetary Institute.
November 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 18, 2013 Elongated craters on the Moon are said to come from “grazing impactors.” In one of the earliest Pictures of the Day by the late Amy Acheson, the question was asked, how do you make a crater? … Continue reading
Seasonal changes on Neptune. Each season lasts 40 years. Image credit: L. Sromovsky, P.Fry (University of Wisconsin), and NASA.
November 15, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 15, 2013 A Neptune Year has Passed. The planet Neptune is the eighth and farthest planet from the Sun. Neptune’s mean diameter is approximately 49,250 kilometers, with a mean orbital radius of 4,503,443,661 kilometers, and a year of … Continue reading
The Crab Nebula pulsar, a hypothetical neutron star.
Credit: NASA/CXC/ASU/J. Hester et al.
November 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 14, 2013 A University of Michigan press release announces “warped space-time” around a so-called “neutron star”. Could electricity provide a better explanation? The smeared lines of an iron spectrum have given NASA and University of Michigan astronomers another mystery to … Continue reading
Albedo and elevation images for Oppia crater on Vesta
November 13, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 13, 2013 New images of the third largest asteroid reveal etched chasms and deep holes. The Dawn mission continues in orbit around Vesta. Vesta is ranked high among minor planets, with Pallas (531 kilometers) and Ceres (952 kilometers) … Continue reading
Credit: NASA Voyager 2 Mission
November 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 12, 2013 Triton is one of the most mysterious objects in the solar system, with plumes of nitrogen spewing from frozen “geysers” near its south pole. Of Neptune’s thirteen satellites, all but one are irregular in shape and mostly … Continue reading
Rhea compared to Earth and the Moon.
November 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Nov 11, 2013 Where did the extremely rarified atmosphere on Rhea come from? Relative to Saturn, Rhea is most likely negatively charged. Saturn’s powerful opposite charge is probably initiating an electric discharge, causing the water in Rhea’s icy surface to … Continue reading
Saturn's moon Dione. Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
November 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 08, 2013 Saturn’s moon, Dione, exhibits some unusual geological formations that may indicate electrical forces at work. As the Cassini spacecraft continues to explore the environment around Saturn, more close up and detailed images reveal that its moons … Continue reading
Image Credit: William Biscorner, Memphis, Michigan
November 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Nov 07, 2013 The Electric Universe hypothesis proposes that electricity lights the stars and forms the web of galaxy clusters in the Universe. But what is it? First, “electricity” is a catchall term that describes several different phenomena: piezoelectric, … Continue reading
A 'box of daylight raven hat' (lkaayaak yeil s’aaxw), depicting the wily raven in the act of releasing the Sun (the red disk with an inlaid mirror), the Moon and the stars from his grandfather's box, which he clutches in his hands (c. 1850 CE) from the Gaanax ádi clan, T'aaku tribe Tlingit Nation) Northwestern British Columbia, Canada). © Marinus Anthony Van Der Sluijs. Courtesy Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, Washington, United States of America.
November 6, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Nov 06, 2013 The story of the ‘making of the world’ is a global legacy of all traditional cultures. One of many angles from which it can be approached is an interplay between darkness and light. From an ancient … Continue reading
Joachim Wtewael (1566 - 1638), The Golden Age (1605), oil on copper. Courtesy Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, United States of America.
November 5, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Nov 05, 2013 The proverbial ‘golden age’ is a classic case study in the difference between local and global themes in mythology. It was the German ethnologist Adolf Bastian (1826-1905) who first introduced a systematic distinction between universal ‘elementary … Continue reading
The island state of Tasmania, Australia. Note the large circular formation to the southwest. Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC.
November 4, 2013 by Garry Maxfield
  Nov 04, 2013 Understanding Earth’s geology is shaped by theories and ideas laid down over 300 years ago. Only four forces were known all those years ago: water, wind, volcanic and tectonic processes. It continues to be a fundamental … Continue reading
Saturn, Venus and Mars in an ancient "polar configuration". Credit: Dave Talbott
October 31, 2013 by Mel Acheson
Nov 01, 2013 It’s exciting to discover a new idea that explains more facts with more unity than previous ideas. It’s exhilarating to discover two such new ideas that interact to reveal opportunities previously unimaginable. That’s what happened with heliocentrism … Continue reading
(Left): The Classic image of the winged thunderbolt as shown on the reverse of an 8-litra coin from Syracuse, Sicily, Italy (214-212 BCE). (Right): Sprites over thunderstorms in Kansas, August 10, 2000, observed in the mesosphere, approximately 50 to 90 kilometers above the surface. Their true colour is pink-red. © Walter Lyons, FMA Research, Fort Collins, Colorado, United States of America/NASA
October 30, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Oct 31, 2013 The discovery of ‘mega-lightning’, upper-atmospheric lightning or transient luminous events (TLEs) is relatively recent, due to the fleeting nature of these phenomena: most last no longer than a few milliseconds. A menagerie of types – such … Continue reading
So-called "star-forming region" Monoceros R2 thought to be 2700 light-years from Earth.
Credit: ESO/J. Emerson/VISTA. Acknowledgment: Cambridge Astronomical Survey Unit.
October 29, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 30, 2013 Astrophysicists are hung up on gravity-only theories of star formation. According to the standard model, new stars result from a compression wave passing through a cloud of dust and gas. Supernovae explosions from another part of … Continue reading
Sunset from Gusev crater on Mars. Credit: NASA/JPL/Texas A&M/Cornell
October 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 29, 2013 A new mission designed to study the Sun’s electrical relationship with Mars will soon be launched. Sometime in the morning a few months from now, between November 18 and December 7, 2013, NASA will launch the … Continue reading
Firdousi, a rampart crater (center) on Mercury, illustrates electric arc erosion. Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
October 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 28, 2013 In this second installment about the planet Mercury, more details about its possible electrical origin will be uncovered. MESSENGER entered orbit around Mercury on March 17, 2011 after traveling nearly eight billion kilometers. Since that time, … Continue reading
Inside Raditladi Basin on Mercury. Credit: AAAS/Science
October 24, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 25, 2013 Data from the MESSENGER probe to Mercury continues to provide evidence for the Electric Universe theory. The planet Mercury has no atmosphere and little in the way of a magnetic field, so it is bombarded by … Continue reading
The Chocolate Hills, Bohol, Philippines.
October 23, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 24, 2013 What formed the hundreds of limestone knolls in this region? The Chocolate Hills are considered to be one of the seven natural wonders of Asia. They are composed of limestone that, according to geologists, has been … Continue reading
Saturn's moon Helene. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute
October 22, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 23, 2013 Can the surface of a tiny moon help to explain the mysterious geography of Mars? In an Electric Universe, the charged moons and the charged rings around Saturn are alternately repelling and attracting each other as … Continue reading
Some of the skeletons found at Mohenjo Daro
October 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 22, 2013 Some have suggested ancient technology glassified these Indus Valley ruins but electricity is a more plausible explanation. Mesopotamia and the Fertile Crescent region are thought to be the “birthplace” of civilization and the central focus for … Continue reading
"Tiger stripes" in Damascus Sulcus, Enceladus. Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Universities Space Research Association/Lunar & Planetary Institute.
October 20, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 21, 2013 Enceladus continues to confirm the electrical nature of its topography. Saturn’s moons are difficult to categorize, let alone explain. As previous Picture of the Day articles point out, they vary in composition, orbital inclination, size, and … Continue reading
The remains of an exploding double layer known as Cassiopeia A with an artist's impression of a theoretical entity called a neutron star. Credit X-ray: NASA/CXC/UNAM/Ioffe/D. Page, P. Shternin et al; Optical: NASA/STScI; Illustration: NASA/CXC/M. Weiss
October 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 18, 2013 Rather than searching for exotic explanations, this celestial object can best be described using plasma physics. According to astronomers from the Chandra X-ray Observatory, the so-called “supernova remnant” Cassiopeia A (or “Cas A”) harbors a strange … Continue reading
M107 is thought to contain some of the oldest stars in the galaxy.
Credit: NASA/ESA
October 16, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 17, 2013 How old are the stars? Why are stars found where we find them? What causes them to form and how do they age? These questions are commonly asked by astronomers and philosophers alike. If the stars … Continue reading
Exceptionally large dust devil in Kansas known as a land spout. Credit: Jim Reed.
October 15, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 16, 2013 Martian dust devils exhibit electrical characteristics. There are also electric whirlwinds on Earth. As long ago as March 2005, Electric Universe advocates wrote about the surprising discovery of dust devils spinning across the Martian deserts. Cameras in … Continue reading
The pocked surface of Saturn's moon Rhea. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute
October 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 15, 2013 Craters cover the entire surface of this moon. Rhea is another of Saturn’s moons that bears examination in light of electrical theories. Rhea’s mean diameter is 1528 kilometers, so it is medium-sized in Saturn’s family of moons. Even … Continue reading
The Triangulum Galaxy (M33) in ultraviolet light. Credit: Galaxy Evolution Explorer/NASA/JPL-Caltech.
October 13, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 14, 2013 The standard model and the Electric Universe model paint fundamentally different pictures of how galaxies are formed and driven. In Part One of this article, the Electric Universe theory’s proposal that magnetic fields are integral to … Continue reading
The Andromeda Galaxy (M31) in ultraviolet and infrared. UV: Galaxy Evolution Explorer;
Infrared: Spitzer Space Telescope. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
October 10, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 11, 2013 A fundamental difference between the standard cosmological and Electric Universe models lies in their views about how the Universe was assembled over time. According to the standard model, some time after the Big Bang gas and … Continue reading
Canyons in Titan's north polar region. Credit: NASA/JPL
October 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 10, 2013 Do the centers of planets and moons contain rocky slush or molten magma? A gravity map of Titan, created by monitoring changes in the Cassini orbiter’s speed as it flew by the giant moon between February … Continue reading
Above the Moon's south pole as seen from Apollo 11.
October 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 09, 2013 Future manned missions to the Moon are slated to land in the polar regions because large deposits of water are thought to exist there. On January 25, 1994, NASA launched the Deep Space Program Science Experiment … Continue reading
Ulysses orbital diagram around the Sun’s poles. Credit: NASA/ESA
October 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 08, 2013 Scientists are puzzled by unexpected acceleration in several unmanned spacecraft as they flew toward the Sun. Editor’s note: This Picture of the Day was originally published in March of 2008. Since therecently announced “solution” to the unexpected … Continue reading
A well-prepared specimen of Harpatocarcinus, said to be about 50 million years old.
October 6, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
Oct 07, 2013 Could fossilization be a rapid process? In the high desert atop the Colorado Plateau, titanic trees haphazardly litter the ground as if scattered by giants. Some of the chunks and splinters of the forest still harbor the … Continue reading
Sulfur-rich soil churned up by the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell.
October 3, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 04, 2013 Sulfur is abundant on Mars. “My hour is almost come, when I to sulphurous and tormenting flames must render up myself.” Hamlet: Act 1 Scene 5 — William Shakespeare According to the Electric Universe theory, diversity … Continue reading
Dione crossing Saturn's ring plane
October 2, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 03, 2013 Dione exhibits some unusual features that may indicate electrical forces at work. Recently, the Cassini-Solstice spacecraft made a close flyby of the moon Enceladus. As the Picture of the Day from May 3, 2012 discussed, the … Continue reading
Starburst galaxy NGC 253. Credit: NASA, ESA, J. Dalcanton and B. Williams (University of Washington)
October 1, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 02, 2013 Radial filaments within galaxies identify them as plasma phenomena. “If a man does not know what port he is steering for, no wind is favorable to him.” — Seneca The irregular galaxy M82—otherwise known as the Cigar … Continue reading
Thousands of dune-like features on Titan. Credit: NASA/JPL/Cassini-Equinox.
September 30, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Oct 01, 2013 How can dunes form in an environment “wet with hydrocarbons”? Dune formations have been found in four locations in the Solar System: Earth, Mars, Venus, and Titan. In one instance the average temperature ranges from between … Continue reading
Three interacting galaxies: NGC 7173 (middle left), NGC 7174 (middle right), and NGC 7176 (lower right). Credit: NASA, ESA, and R. Sharples (University of Durham)
September 29, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 30, 2013 Galactic magnetic fields were discovered more than 50 years ago. Astronomers continue to ask basic questions about galaxies: what generates their magnetic fields? What gives those fields their shape and their strength? Researchers using the latest … Continue reading
Echoes of a primordial landscape? Þingvellir, Iceland. © Marinus Anthony Van Der Sluijs.
September 26, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Sep 27, 2013 Many cultures recalled a period of unbearable cold, which they associated with a distant mythical age of ‘creation’, when the sun did not yet shine or fire had not yet been obtained. Such tales are hardly … Continue reading
Double Rainbow
September 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Sep 26, 2013 External electric flux influences Earth’s climate According to a recent press release, ten years of data analysis has revealed that cloud height changes over time in response to an electric field generated by “global thunderstorms”. Although Earth’s electric … Continue reading
Pipette petroglyph vs computer simulated plasma toroid
September 24, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
Sep 25, 2013 Things may be carved in stone and still be nebulous. Petroglyphs come without captions; clues of their intended meanings are more often missing than not. Yet though certainty is rarely to be had, the quest for the … Continue reading
Nebula Henize 3-1475. Credit: J. Borkowski, (North Carolina State University), J. Harrington, (University of Maryland), J. Blondin (North Carolina State University), M. Bobrowsky (Challenger Center for Space Science), M. Meixner (Space Telescope Science Institute), and C. Skinner (Space Telescope Science Institute).
September 23, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 24, 2013 Consensus opinions state that a star in the latter stages of its life will undergo violent upheavals as its supply of hydrogen fuel diminishes and the “ash” of heavier elements accumulates in its core. According to … Continue reading
Sculpture representing the myth of the 'sun hunter', of the Bunun Nation (Taiwan), by Karavayan Pali (1929-), Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village, Yuchi, Taiwan. © Marinus Anthony Van Der Sluijs
September 22, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Sep 23, 2013 In the study of myth, the question of metaphors presents many a challenge. When does a ‘sun’ literally refer to the quotidian sun and when is it a metaphor for some other bright sky light? Hard-and-fast … Continue reading
This picture shows a view of a three-dimensional visualisation of ALMA observations of cold carbon monoxide gas in the nearby starburst galaxy NGC 253 (The Sculptor Galaxy). The vertical axis shows velocity and the horizontal axis the position across the central part of the galaxy. The colours represent the intensity of the emission detected by ALMA, with pink being the strongest and red the weakest. Credit: ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/Erik Rosolowsky
September 20, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Sep 20, 2013 The large ALMA radio telescope in Chile has discovered that “billowing columns” of “gas” are “fleeing” from gravitational forces that would snare them into new stars. The size of the Sculptor Galaxy depends on the outcome. … Continue reading
"Auroral Electrojet" by Don Saban. Used with permission.
September 18, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 19, 2013 The northern aurora is a highly energetic region. “It seems to be a natural consequence of our points of view to assume that the whole of space is filled with electrons and flying electric ions of … Continue reading
NGC 2020 (left) and NGC 2014 (right) in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Credit: ESO
September 17, 2013 by Mel Acheson
Sep 18, 2013 Popular accounts of nebulas usually omit mention of their “hairy” structure. Because gravity can’t produce long, evenly spaced filaments of matter, astronomers don’t talk about them. Perhaps they don’t even see them. This double nebula is located in the … Continue reading
Orbital diagram of comet 2012 S1. Credit: JPL Small Body Database.
September 16, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 17, 2013 Are comets “dirty snowballs”? (This TPOD originally ran on Apr 01, 2013) Comet 2012 S1, an object approximately three kilometers in diameter, is presently inside the orbit of Jupiter. It is “remarkably bright” according to astronomers, … Continue reading
Menelaus confronts Helen of Troy. Detail of an Attic red-figure krater, c. 450–440 BCE. (Louvre)
September 16, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
  Sep 16, 2013 Part 1 “The Iliad” The Trojan War began with the abduction of the tantalizing Helen by the handsome Paris. Our saga begins in the shattered, burning ruins of a once glorious Troy. A Troy devastated by … Continue reading
Ganymede's size in comparison with Earth and the MoonCredit: NASA/JPL
September 12, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 13, 2013 The largest moon in the Solar System shows signs of what could be electric scarring. Jupiter and its moons have been the destination of several deep space missions over the last four decades. Beginning with Pioneer … Continue reading
Galaxy NGC 7319. Arrow points to foreground high redshift quasar.
Credit: NASA/Hubble Space Telescope
September 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 12, 2013 Modern astronomy surely suffers from a kind of blindness. It is either a blindness of mind or one of practice. The continuing presence of Big Bang cosmology among those who are charged with increasing the store … Continue reading
NGC 6537—an example of a bipolar planetary nebula. Recent observations of such nebulae near the galactic core show them to be aligned with the galactic plane. NGC 6537 was not included in the study. Credit: ESO
September 10, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Sep 11, 2013 Modern astronomy has a planetary nebula (PN) problem: Gravity can’t do what PNs do. Astronomers invent a kind of pseudo-magnetism to fill the explanatory holes. This pseudo-magnetism is a reified presumption that’s unplugged from the electric … Continue reading
The 91 brightest gamma ray sources in the center of the Milky Way. Credit: ESA
September 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 10, 2013 So-called “dark matter” reactions are said to initiate gamma rays from the center of our galaxy. “We should remember that there was once a discipline called natural philosophy. Unfortunately, this discipline seems not to exist today. … Continue reading
The coast of Greenland with criss-crossing fjords. Credit: NASA
September 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 09, 2013 A giant scar beneath Greenland’s ice sheet could indicate an electric discharge. One of the tenets of Electric Universe theory involves recent catastrophes in the Solar System, including Earth and its near neighbors. Scores of articles … Continue reading
Radio signals (orange and green) reveal the counterpart, hidden in dusty plasma, to the visible jet (pink and purple) of a Herbig-Haro star. Credit: ESO/ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/H. Arce. Acknowledgements: Bo Reipurth
September 5, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Sep 06, 2013 Radio-wave observations of a Herbig-Haro (jetted) star at the edge of an opaque plasma cell reveal the wiring harness that drives it. In visible light, a spiraling filament jets toward the upper left of the image. … Continue reading
Latest image of the quiet Sun from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) satellite (March 25, 2013). Credit: ESA/NASA
September 4, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 05, 2013 The Sun is not a fusion reactor. In a recent Picture of the Day, it was noted that sunspots are not well understood by astronomers. Furthermore, their bizarre electromagnetic displays are not readily explainable by models … Continue reading
False-color image of "protostar" IRAS 20324+4057. Image credit: NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA), and IPHAS.
September 3, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Sep 04, 2013 Well-organized phenomena in space cannot be solely based on mechanical action. A recent press release from the Hubble Space Telescope science team announces a “cosmic caterpillar” in the constellation Cygnus. This knotted structure is said to … Continue reading
Under the Antarctic ice. Image used by permission.
September 2, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
  Sep 03, 2013 Antarctica is now the coldest place on Earth. The Katabatic winds howl around Antarctica’s gale thrashed coast. But once its green valley’s were filled with thriving Glossopteris Pine and Beach forests. How do we know this? … Continue reading
A frog levitating in a 16 Tesla magnetic field. Credit: High Field Magnet Laboratory, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands
September 1, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Sep 02, 2013 A gravity-only Universe cannot explain certain discrepancies. Ilya Prigogine, from a young age, was concerned that accepted physical theory had a couple of glaring discrepancies from observation: determinism and time symmetry. Most observations are of contingency … Continue reading
Swarms of insects rise into the air in Washington State. Credit: Carmen Pulak.
August 30, 2013 by Michael Armstrong
  Aug 30, 2013 Do these columns of insects indicate diffuse Birkeland currents ahead of a storm? The faint dark columns are composed of swirling insects and are around 60 feet high. Swarms of insects are common in this area … Continue reading
UV image of a 100,000 kilometer exploding solar filament (August 31, 2012). Credit: NASA/SDO/GSFC.
August 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 29, 2013 The intensity of the Sun’s magnetic field and solar wind periodically decline to low levels but explosive events are possible. On August 25, 1997, NASA launched the Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE) satellite on a mission to … Continue reading
Dark against light solar spicules in the H-alpha band. Note that the dark regions
are "blue-shifted." Credit: Lockheed Martin Solar and Astrophysics Lab
August 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 28, 2013 Dark mode plasma phenomena exist on the Sun. The image at the top of the page is the most detailed ever taken of the Sun’s chromosphere. The smallest features are 130 kilometers in size. Each spicule … Continue reading
Galaxy NGC 1068 reveals a powerful stream of X-rays emerging from its nucleus.
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/MIT/UCSB/P.Ogle et al.; Optical: NASA/STScI/A.Capetti et al.
August 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 27, 2013 Supermassive black holes are said to generate galactic winds. “Black holes are where God divided by zero.” — Stephen Wright In a previous Picture of the Day, It was suggested that X-ray jets from a galactic … Continue reading
So-called "flood channel" near Olympia Fossae in the Martian Tharsis region. Original image credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
August 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 26, 2013 Water is said to have carved many of the features on Mars. Scientists from the University of California reported in June 2007 that a “confirmation” for the Martian liquid ocean theory was found: “shorelines” extending for … Continue reading
NGC 891
August 22, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 23, 2013 From galaxies to the laboratory, transverse electric currents accompany a main discharge channel. That “main discharge channel” experienced by most people comes in the form of a terrestrial lighting bolt. Slow-motion studies reveal that each flash … Continue reading
Galaxy NGC 7793. Credit: ESO
August 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 22, 2013 An electromagnetic phenomenon on the fringes of galaxy NGC 7793 is confounding astronomers because they insist on seeing it as a gravitational superforce. Explaining the jets of ionized particles often seen erupting from various objects in … Continue reading
The cliffs of Mount Banks, Victoria, Australia. Photographer unknown.
August 20, 2013 by Garry Maxfield
  Aug 21, 2013 When considering the topography of our planet, it is possible to look at it in different ways. The first consideration is that what is seen can be viewed with an assumption that it took millions or … Continue reading
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August 19, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Aug 20, 2013 Cold dark matter theory might be in need of serious revision. Dark matter theory makes the news every once in awhile. Although cold dark matter (CDM) gets its name from the idea that it cannot be detected with any … Continue reading
"Orb of Dark Energy". Artist: Derek Shunia
August 18, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 19, 2013 Cosmologists still have no idea what dark energy is. In 1998, two astronomical research teams independently discovered what is now called “dark energy.” Saul Perlmutter of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Brian Schmidt from the … Continue reading
"Purple Swirls". Artist unknown.
August 15, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Aug 16, 2013 Rediscovering F. A. Hayek’s The Sensory Order has been exciting. Hayek began his inquiry into the foundations of theoretical psychology in 1919 before specializing in economics (and winning a Nobel Prize in that latter field in … Continue reading
Aurora Australis over the Bellingshausen Sea. Photographer unknown.
August 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 15, 2013 Our fortunes are inextricably connected to the Sun’s activity.  Now that is the wisdom of a man, in every instance of his labor, to hitch his wagon to a star, and see his chore done by the … Continue reading
Aurora Borealis by Frederic Edwin Church (1865).
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, United States of America.
August 13, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Aug 14, 2013 To eyewitnesses, including those at lower latitudes, highly energetic formations produced by extremely vigorous aurorae have often suggested some form of painting or supernatural inscription on the canvas of the sky. This was the case with … Continue reading
Exotic geological formation in Namibia. Credit: Google Earth
August 12, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Aug 13, 2013 It has the body of a snake and the head of a lion. It has legs that end in clawed feet. It often has wings: it flies, or at least it comes from the sky. It … Continue reading
Composite image of galaxy cluster MACSJ0717.5+3745 from HST and Chandra.
Credit: X-ray (NASA/CXC/IfA/C. Ma et al.); Optical (NASA/STScI/IfA/C. Ma et al.)
August 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 12, 2013 Astronomers have detected a strand of galaxies and gas flowing into a remote cluster. Today’s predominant cosmological hypothesis is based on a gravity-only paradigm. Moving masses and heat are the only factors allowed to operate in … Continue reading
Galactic grouping Arp 194. Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)
August 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 09, 2013 Galaxies are the luminous children of electrical parentage, not the darkling spawn of invisible forces. “Hear one side and you will be in the dark. Hear both and all will be clear.” — Lord Chesterfield “Galaxies … Continue reading
Filaments of dust obscure starlight near the center of the Milky Way. Credit: ESO
August 7, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Aug 08, 2013 It twists like a Birkeland Current; it’s stringy like a Birkeland Current; it’s dense like a Birkeland Current; but Everyone Knows (if they want to pursue a career in astronomy) that There is No Such Thing … Continue reading
The Scandinavian Peninsula from space.
Credit: NASA GSFC/Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team
August 6, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Aug 07, 2013 What cut the colossal trenches into the coast of Norway? Northern Scandinavia is probably the most rugged terrain on Earth. It is a peninsular landmass extending outward from the Asian continent for 2000 kilometers and is … Continue reading
Global distribution of cultures with traditions of a ‘low sky’. Additional examples continue to be registered. © Marinus Anthony van der Sluijs
August 5, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Feb 13, 2013 Most researchers address ‘known’ questions, such as ‘what causes ice ages?’, ‘how far is the moon?’ or ‘where did the ancestors of the human species live?’. Comparative mythologists face the double challenge of seeking answers to … Continue reading
Credit: ESO/J. Dietrich
August 4, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Aug 05, 2013 NGC 4666 is one of the younger additions to the Virgo cluster of galaxies. It has also apparently given birth to another generation. The galaxy lies eight degrees south of M49, the great-grandmother of the Virgo … Continue reading
North geomagnetic pole from 8000 BCE to 2000 CE.
August 1, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Aug 02, 2013 Leibniz’ beloved adage that natura non facit saltus or ‘nature does not make leaps’ has had to endure a fair amount of comeuppances since it gained currency. An arresting example today of our unpredictable world is the rapid … Continue reading
Design of a "squatterman" stylised as a lizard in the headdress of a wooden figure representing the first ancestor, Senufo people, Ivory Coast (mid-twentieth century). Courtesy National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, United States of America.
July 31, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Aug 01, 2013 A common theme in creation myths is that the first human being appeared in the sky, often as a metamorphosis of a divine creator. On Tahiti, people remembered the time before creation when “an expanse of … Continue reading
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July 30, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 31, 2013 What causes some stars to rapidly fluctuate in brightness? The Electronic Sun theory postulates that sunspots, solar flares, anomalous coronal heating, and coronal mass ejections on the Sun are due to changes in the electrical supply … Continue reading
Sicily 1692
July 29, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
  Jul 30, 3013 Some four thousand years ago, the civilizations of the world were obliterated by a catastrophic series of events. Earthquakes are natures deadliest killers! A storm of earthquakes totally buried and destroyed cities throughout the Middle East … Continue reading
Comet Ison
July 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 29, 2013 The Hubble Space Telescope has returned remarkable images of Comet ISON, revealing structures that appear to confirm the electrical nature of comets. Recent observations of Comet Pan-STARRS in April of 2013 confirmed that it would not … Continue reading
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July 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 26, 2013 The Cassini space probe’s flyby of Iapetus confirms its electrical attributes. The closest images of Iapetus ever taken came from the Cassini spacecraft as it flew to within 5000 kilometers of its target, resolving features as … Continue reading
Image197-550x381
July 24, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 25, 2013 Galactic tails, bright comas, and central nuclei are reminiscent of comets. What is a comet? Most astronomers think comets are small, fragile, irregularly shaped objects composed mostly of water ice and dust, along with carbon and … Continue reading
Looking across Grose Valley. Credit: Garry Maxfield
July 23, 2013 by Garry Maxfield
  Jul 24, 2013 When we look at the geology of our planet and how it is shaped, there are assumptions that govern our interpretation of the landscape that surrounds us. We have been told and taught that the only … Continue reading
0-0-0-electrical-accumulators
July 22, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 23, 2013 What takes place in thunderstorms on Earth is most likely a smaller version of large scale phenomena. “I have always believed that astrophysics should be the extrapolation of laboratory physics, that we must begin from the … Continue reading
How a rotating flagellum anchors to the cell wall. Credit: David DeRosie
July 19, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Jul 20, 2013 Rotating motors propel some bacteria. Some bacteria can swim through their tiny worlds. They accomplish this feat with the aid of spinning propellors called “flagella”. The species of bacteria with this capability that is most familiar to … Continue reading
The north pole of Phobos. Credit: ESA/DLR/FU Berlin (G. Neukum)
July 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Editor’s note: The new Picture of the Day that normally appears on Friday will delayed until Saturday. Meanwhile, please continue to enjoy this one about the enigmatic Martian moon Phobos for another day. Jul 18, 2013 Did meteor bombardment scar … Continue reading
Stars in this globular cluster are supposed to have evolved into a bright giant phase. Recent observations reveal that 70% of them didn’t. Credit: ESO
July 16, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Jul 17, 2013 A second generation of stars in the globular cluster NGC 6752 stopped evolving. Perhaps they’re waiting for a better theory. The idea that stars evolve is one of those unjustifiable preconceptions with which observations are interpreted … Continue reading
Galaxy Cluster 2XMM J083026+524133 (blue). Original image credit: G. Lamer et al.
July 15, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 16, 2013 A distant galaxy cluster is said to exhibit evidence for an unknown force. Not a single reference is made to the most powerful known force in the Universe: electricity. The European Space Agency’s XMM Newton X-ray Telescope research … Continue reading
The Eagle Nebula (M16). Credit: T.A.Rector (NRAO/AUI/NSF and NOAO/AURA/NSF) and B.A.Wolpa (NOAO/AURA/NSF)
July 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 15, 2013 Spiraling filaments suggest electric currents in space. Dust at a temperature near absolute zero shows up in the image above as a blue fog deep in the heart of the Eagle nebula. The Eagle nebula, located … Continue reading
The Vela supernova remnant
July 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 12, 2013 Some so-called “neutron star pulsars” are said to create nebulae as they spin. The standard model of stellar evolution proposes that pulsars are neutron stars rotating at incredible speed. For example, PSR J1748-2446ad, in the globular … Continue reading
The Vela Pulsar Wind Nebula at hard X-ray energies (18 to 40 keV, blue), soft X-ray emissions (0.5 to 2 keV and 2.5 to 12 keV, green and cyan), and high energy gamma-rays (1 TeV and above, magenta). Credit: ESA/INTEGRAL/IBIS-ISGRI/F. Mattana et al./ROSAT/H.E.S.S. /Spacelab 2
July 10, 2013 by Stephen Smith
   Jul 11, 2013 Extreme magnetic fields in space are said to be caused by the high-speed rotation of neutron stars. Several previous Picture of the Day articles discuss the problem of neutron stars and how they affect the progress … Continue reading
The Rotten Egg Nebula. Credit: NASA, ESA, William B. Latter (SIRTF Science Center/California Institute of Technology), John H. Bieging (University of Arizona), Casey Meakin (University of Arizona), A.G.G.M. Tielens (Kapteyn Astronomical Institute), Aditya Dayal (IPAC/NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory), Joseph L. Hora (Center for Astrophysics), and Douglas M. Kelly (University of Arizona).
July 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 10, 2013 The Universe behaves according to the laws of plasma dynamics. In every science journal discussing the behavior of planetary nebulae, the prevailing opinion usually involves gases and dust “blowing” through them, as well as “winds” created … Continue reading
600 kilometer per hour winds on Jupiter. Credit: NASA/Cassini Mission.
July 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 09, 2013 Why do planets farthest from the Sun have the fastest winds? Earth’s average wind speed is approximately 56 kilometers per hour, with a maximum of 372 kilometer per hour gust recorded on Mount Washington, New Hampshire … Continue reading
Galaxy cluster RDCS 1252.9-2927. Purple color indicates x-ray emissions.
Credit: X-ray NASA/CXC/ESO/P.Rosati et al. Optical: ESO/VLT/P.Rosati et al.
July 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 08, 2013 Was the early Universe powered by “dark matter annihilation”? According to modern cosmologists, the Universe is composed primarily of dark matter. More than 95% of all that exists is unseen and undetectable by the most sensitive … Continue reading
Relaxation phase of a super-exploding double layer. Credit: X-ray (NASA/CXC/NCSU/K.Borkowski et al.); Optical (DSS)
July 4, 2013 by Mel Acheson
Jul 05, 2013 NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory recently discovered this object, which the dusty plasma near the center of the Milky Way obscures in optical light. X-rays penetrate the dust: low-energy signals are red, intermediate-energy signals are green, and high-energy … Continue reading
Infrared image of the Small Magellanic Cloud. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI.
July 3, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 04, 2013 What do a planet-sized, frigid moon and a small galaxy have in common? The Magellanic Clouds consist of two dwarf galaxies in proximity to the Milky Way. According to astronomers, they are orbiting our galaxy and … Continue reading
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July 2, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Jul 03, 2013 Modern instruments enable astronomers to look at the universe in wavelengths of light beyond human biological limitations. Astronomers are surprised that the x-ray and radio images are different from what they expected. Although they’re looking in … Continue reading
The Sun's changing electromagnetic field. Credit: NASA/SDO.
July 1, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jul 02, 2013 Problems with various theories could be resolved if mistaken identity were considered. It has been demonstrated over the centuries that the worst possible witnesses in court are often those who were present at the scene of … Continue reading
Cold Birkeland current feeding into the pinch point of the Orion Nebula (M42) in the Orion Molecular Cloud.Credit: ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2
June 30, 2013 by Mel Acheson
Jul 01, 2013 The following press release from the European Southern Observatory has been corrected to reflect the discovery that 99.99% of the universe is composed of plasma. This dramatic new image of cosmic clouds a plasma discharge in the … Continue reading
Globular cluster M4. Credit: NOAO/AURA/NSF
June 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 28, 2013 The light from remote globular clusters should be blue according to theory because the farther away one looks the farther back in time one sees. It seems as if each new observation from the Hubble Space … Continue reading
SN1994D, a supernova in NGC 4526
June 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 27, 2013 NASA computer simulations are not able to correctly model supernova explosions. Contemporary astrophysical models of stellar evolution rely on the mechanical action of cold gas collapsing from gravitational impetus. Stars are seen as whirling vortices of … Continue reading
Lightning strikes the Eiffel Tower. Credit: Bertrand Kulik
June 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 26, 2013 Glass, plastics, and various metal oxides are efficient dielectric insulators. Dry air is another example. Lightning is not well understood. The most common interpretation involves the circulation of water vapor up and down through clouds in … Continue reading
The Coma Cluster of galaxies. Credit: Sloan Digital Sky Survey
June 24, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 25, 2013 Images of the Coma Cluster from the Subaru Telescope reveal galactic filaments connecting bright “knots” of ionized gas. According to redshift calculations, the Coma Cluster is a sphere of galaxies 3.5 million light years in diameter … Continue reading
A traditional cosmology based on Icelandic mythology and a scientific cosmology
June 23, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Jun 24, 2013 Science and folk tradition are supposed to be strictly separate domains of knowledge, but in practice they often shade into each other. The image shown above right attempts to map the entire visible universe. The galaxies tend to … Continue reading
Fractured and apparently layered rock on Mars. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS
June 20, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 21, 2013 Is planetary science correct to use Earth as the basis for explaining other planets? “Appearances to the mind are of four kinds. Things either are what they appear to be; or they neither are, nor appear … Continue reading
Eta Carina in X-ray wavelengths. Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO
June 19, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 20, 2013 Wind socks, bow shocks, shockwaves and collisions are often used to describe the phenomena that create high-frequency electromagnetic radiation in the cosmos. From gamma rays down through X-rays and extreme ultraviolet, conventional theories have relied upon … Continue reading
Sirius A and its white dwarf companion in X-ray light. Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO
June 18, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 19, 2013 The Sun’s nearest neighbors do not share a similar chemical composition. There are ten stars within 11 light-years of the Sun: Star Name                   Distance Proxima Centauri     … Continue reading
X-ray jet from a quasar said to be over 12 billion light-years away. Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/NRC/C.Cheung et al; Optical: NASA/STScI; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA
June 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 18, 2013 X-rays in space are an electrical phenomenon According to a recent press release, the most distant X-ray jet ever observed is spewing from a supermassive black hole (SMBH) in the center of a quasar known as GB … Continue reading
"Pagoda" formation in Gooches crater. Credit: Garry Maxfield.
June 16, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 17, 2013 Northwest of Sydney, Australia are straight-cut sandstone canyons and circular formations. Could they be evidence for electrical discharge? The Australian continent exhibits some of the more unusual geological formations on Earth. Giant sandstone monoliths rise out … Continue reading
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona
June 13, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Jun 14, 2013 Experimenters slid blocks of dry ice down sand dunes and reproduced some of the features of the long straight grooves on Martian hillsides.* The smart folks at Jet Propulsion Laboratory are to be commended for not … Continue reading
The Helicon Double Layer Thruster (HDLT). Credit: Australian National University Research School of Physical Sciences and Engineering.
June 12, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 13, 2013 Electric double layers are like waterfalls that energize charged particles falling through them. “We have to learn again that science without contact with experiments is an enterprise which is likely to go completely astray into imaginary … Continue reading
A galaxy plot indicating the theoretical “cold dark matter” structure of the universe
out to 1.8 billion light-years. Credit: M. White, University of California, Berkeley.
June 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 12, 2013 In the gravitational model of the universe, “dark matter” attraction pulls galaxies into filaments. Birkeland currents could be a better explanation. A paper in the astronomical journals and popular press identifies an area of space as … Continue reading
Kayapo headdress, C. 1910
June 10, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Jun 11, 2013 In parts of the Amazonian rainforest, traditional costume included a headdress consisting of a circular arrangement of feathers. The ring of 36 feathers, most of which are white, lacks an obvious counterpart in the skies we … Continue reading
The Fornax galaxy cluster. ESO/J. Emerson/VISTA.
Acknowledgment: Cambridge Astronomical Survey Unit.
June 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 10, 2013 Astronomers claim to have found the galaxies missing in their earlier observations. “Astronomers always knew they were missing some fraction of the galaxies in Lyman-alpha surveys, but for the first time we now have a measurement. … Continue reading
The Alps from space. Credit: Jacques Descloitres, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team, NASA/GSFC
June 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 07, 2013 It is a commonly held belief that events on Earth progress according to cycles. One of the principle tenets of Electric Universe theory is that Earth and the Solar System have experienced catastrophic reordering and resurfacing … Continue reading
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June 5, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 06, 2013 Electric planets exist in an electric Solar System. “The main aurora oval on Jupiter we think should dim when the solar wind blows harder, but what we see is that actually gets brighter, which is totally … Continue reading
Supposed water features in Arabia Terra on Mars. Credit: NASA/Malin Space Science Systems
June 4, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 05, 2013 Structures on Mars that resemble Earth’s hydrothermal vents or eroded mounds have sparked renewed interest in water flowing over the Red Planet. Mounds on Mars are thought to be the remains of ancient hydrothermal vents because … Continue reading
A temperature map of Mercury's north pole calculated from MESSENGER data. Credit: NASA/UCLA/JHUAPL/Carnegie Institution of Washington
June 3, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 04, 2013 Is there frozen water on Mercury? Some say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice. From what I’ve tasted of desire I hold with those who favor fire. But if it had to … Continue reading
Interacting ring galaxies designated as Arp 147. Credit: NASA, ESA, and M. Livio (STScI)
June 2, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jun 03, 2013 If distance calculations based on redshift are inaccurate, what does that mean for the consensus opinion about the age or the size of the Universe? In the 1960s astronomers discovered quasi-stellar objects, better known as quasars. … Continue reading
Cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation projected onto a sphere. Credit: NASA/WMAP
May 30, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 31, 2013 How big is the Universe? How old is it? Today, cosmology is dominated by the Big Bang theory. The theory’s major premise is that there was once a void containing no matter, no space, and no … Continue reading
Strange glow on the lunar horizon. Credit: NASA/Surveyor 7
May 29, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 30, 2013 Static electric charge might help to explain the glowing haze sometimes seen rising 100 kilometers above the Moon’s horizon. Between May 1966 and January 1968, NASA launched the Surveyor missions to the Moon. Each Surveyor spacecraft weighed approximately … Continue reading
The Crab Nebula pulsar, a hypothetical neutron star.
Credit: NASA/CXC/ASU/J. Hester et al.
May 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 29, 2013 A University of Michigan press release announces “warped space-time” around a so-called “neutron star”. Could electricity provide a better explanation? The smeared lines of an iron spectrum have given NASA and University of Michigan astronomers another … Continue reading
Saturn’s north pole in infrared. Credit: NASA/JPL/Oxford University
May 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 28, 2013 Electric Universe advocates were not surprised by Saturn’s hot poles. In a past press release, NASA scientists admitted their surprise at finding a hot north pole on Saturn, although the term “hot” is relative. The temperature of … Continue reading
Albedo and elevation images for Oppia crater on Vesta
May 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 27, 2013 New images of the third largest asteroid reveal etched chasms and deep holes. The Dawn mission continues in orbit around Vesta. Vesta is ranked high among minor planets, with Pallas (531 kilometers) and Ceres (952 kilometers) … Continue reading
Credit: NASA Voyager 2 Mission
May 23, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 24, 2013 Triton is one of the most mysterious objects in the solar system, with plumes of nitrogen spewing from frozen “geysers” near its south pole. Of Neptune’s thirteen satellites, all but one are irregular in shape and … Continue reading
The Pillars of Creation. Credit: J. Hester, P. Scowen (ASU) HST/NASA
May 22, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 23, 2013 Rather than being a stellar nursery the famous dust clouds in the Eagle Nebula may already be gone. On November 2, 1995, NASA released the now-famous image of M16, the Eagle Nebula, in the constellation Serpens. Jeff … Continue reading
Image Credit: William Biscorner, Memphis, Michigan
May 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 22, 2013 The Electric Universe hypothesis proposes that electricity lights the stars and forms the web of galaxy clusters in the Universe. But what is it? First, “electricity” is a catchall term that describes several different phenomena: piezoelectric, … Continue reading
Caloris Basin on Mercury
May 20, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 21, 2013 Images of Mercury reveal an unusual blend of mineral compounds in its surface structure, as well as a thin atmosphere. The planet Mercury is 4878 kilometers in diameter. The moons Ganymede and Titan are both larger, … Continue reading
A 'box of daylight raven hat' (lkaayaak yeil s’aaxw), depicting the wily raven in the act of releasing the Sun (the red disk with an inlaid mirror), the Moon and the stars from his grandfather's box, which he clutches in his hands (c. 1850 CE) from the Gaanax ádi clan, T'aaku tribe Tlingit Nation) Northwestern British Columbia, Canada). © Marinus Anthony Van Der Sluijs. Courtesy Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, Washington, United States of America.
May 19, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  May 20, 2013 The story of the ‘making of the world’ is a global legacy of all traditional cultures. One of many angles from which it can be approached is an interplay between darkness and light. From an ancient … Continue reading
Joachim Wtewael (1566 - 1638), The Golden Age (1605), oil on copper. Courtesy Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, United States of America.
May 16, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  May 17, 2013 The proverbial ‘golden age’ is a classic case study in the difference between local and global themes in mythology. It was the German ethnologist Adolf Bastian (1826-1905) who first introduced a systematic distinction between universal ‘elementary … Continue reading
The planetary nebula Fleming 1 seen with ESO’s Very Large Telescope
Credit: ESO/H. Boffin
May 15, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  May 16, 2013 “Planetary nebulae are glowing shells of gas around white dwarfs,” according to the standard explanation. This is a better description of dogma than of the image. “Astronomers have long debated how these symmetric jets could be created,” … Continue reading
(Left): The Classic image of the winged thunderbolt as shown on the reverse of an 8-litra coin from Syracuse, Sicily, Italy (214-212 BCE). (Right): Sprites over thunderstorms in Kansas, August 10, 2000, observed in the mesosphere, approximately 50 to 90 kilometers above the surface. Their true colour is pink-red. © Walter Lyons, FMA Research, Fort Collins, Colorado, United States of America/NASA
May 14, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  May 15, 2013 The discovery of ‘mega-lightning’, upper-atmospheric lightning or transient luminous events (TLEs) is relatively recent, due to the fleeting nature of these phenomena: most last no longer than a few milliseconds. A menagerie of types – such … Continue reading
Supposed black hole
May 13, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 14, 2013 Problematic black hole physics is in the news again. In a recent press release from the Galaxy Evolution Explorer and the Pan-STARRS1 telescope in Hawaii, astronomers announced “direct evidence” for the existence of a supermassive black hole (SMBH) … Continue reading
Sunset from Gusev crater on Mars. Credit: NASA/JPL/Texas A&M/Cornell
May 12, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 13, 2013 A new mission designed to study the Sun’s electrical relationship with Mars will soon be launched. Sometime in the morning a few months from now, between November 18 and December 7, 2013, NASA will launch the … Continue reading
The Chocolate Hills, Bohol, Philippines.
May 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 10, 2013 What formed the hundreds of limestone knolls in this region? The Chocolate Hills are considered to be one of the seven natural wonders of Asia. They are composed of limestone that, according to geologists, has been … Continue reading
NGC 5128
May 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 09, 2013 One of the largest “active galaxies” is thought to be powered by a supermassive black hole. Electrical energy is a more likely driving force. A recent press release from the European Southern Observatory (ESO) announces that the elliptical … Continue reading
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May 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 08, 2013 Some have suggested ancient technology glassified these Indus Valley ruins but electricity is a more plausible explanation. Mesopotamia and the Fertile Crescent region are thought to be the “birthplace” of civilization and the central focus for … Continue reading
The Tarantula Nebula
May 6, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  May 07, 2013 The Tarantula Nebula in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a companion galaxy to the Milky Way, is called a nursery for new stars. The growing awareness of plasma should make it also a nursery for new ideas … Continue reading
Left: Tvashtar “volcanic plume” on Io. Credit: NASA/New Horizons mission.
Right: Solar prominence. Credit: NASA/Marshall Spaceflight Center.
May 5, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 06, 2013 Phenomena throughout the visible universe exhibit features that are twisted and “stringy”. From plume to prominence it is plasma interactions that we see. In previous Picture of the Day articles, there have been many discussions about … Continue reading
M107 is thought to contain some of the oldest stars in the galaxy.
Credit: NASA/ESA
May 2, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 3, 2013 How old are the stars? Why are stars found where we find them? What causes them to form and how do they age? These questions are commonly asked by astronomers and philosophers alike. If the stars … Continue reading
Clusters of galaxies on the same electric circuit. Credit: ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech/CXC/McGill University
May 1, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 02, 2013 A galaxy-wide filament connects two galactic clusters. The Herschel Space Observatory possesses the largest mirror ever launched into space: 3.5 meters in diameter. Herschel entered orbit around LaGrange point L2 (behind Earth in relation to the Sun) in … Continue reading
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April 30, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  May 1, 2013 Martian dust devils exhibit electrical characteristics. There are also electric whirlwinds on Earth. As long ago as March 2005, Electric Universe advocates wrote about the surprising discovery of dust devils spinning across the Martian deserts. Cameras … Continue reading
A superbubble in the gas (or is it plasma?) of the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy (or is it a plasma discharge fragment?) of the Milky Way. 
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/U.Mich./S.Oey, IR: NASA/JPL, Optical: ESO/WFI/2.2-m
April 29, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Apr 30, 2013 Both nuclear powered stars and electrically powered stars produce bubbles in the plasma surrounding them. From that common observational beginning, the theoretical explanations diverge. Nuclear generated bubbles come in two types: planetary nebulae (PNs) and supernova (SN) remnants. … Continue reading
The pocked surface of Saturn's moon Rhea. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute
April 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 29, 2013 Craters cover the entire surface of this moon. Rhea is another of Saturn’s moons that bears examination in light of electrical theories. Rhea’s mean diameter is 1528 kilometers, so it is medium-sized in Saturn’s family of … Continue reading
Canyons in Titan's north polar region. Credit: NASA/JPL
April 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 26, 2013 Do the centers of planets and moons contain rocky slush or molten magma? A gravity map of Titan, created by monitoring changes in the Cassini orbiter’s speed as it flew by the giant moon between February … Continue reading
“Hairy ring” and “sputtering spiral” around the star R Sculptoris. Consensus theories shuffle shells. Credit: ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)
April 24, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Apr 25, 2013 The geometry of gravity is spherical: a uniform attraction toward a center of mass that tends to produce ball-shaped objects. This “bias for balls” predisposes astronomers to interpret rings as spherical shells. The European Southern Observatory press … Continue reading
Ulysses orbital diagram around the Sun’s poles. Credit: NASA/ESA
April 23, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 24, 2013 Scientists are puzzled by unexpected acceleration in several unmanned spacecraft as they flew toward the Sun. Editor’s note: This Picture of the Day was originally published in March of 2008. Since the recently announced “solution” to … Continue reading
Credit: ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2. Acknowledgement: Davide De Martin
April 22, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Apr 23, 2013 To talk about something, we have to conceive ideas and words with which to describe the thing. We can’t avoid these pre-conceptions. But will we try to compensate for this prejudice by conceiving more than one? The Seagull … Continue reading
Cradle Mountain
April 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 22, 2013 Could the dolerite structures in Tasmania be electrical formations? The Island of Tasmania in the south of Australia is one of the most provocative spots on Earth. The remarkable diversity of plant life and the unique … Continue reading
A coronal mass ejection erupts from the Sun
April 18, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 19, 2013 Electric currents create magnetic fields in the Sun. “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” Asking this question always gets a chuckle from a group of kids who haven’t been asked that before. For adults, … Continue reading
A faint band of color on Saturn's moon Tethys. Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute.
April 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 18, 2013 Some of Saturn’s moons are slightly red in color, as are other bodies in the Solar System. “Mars the red planet” is a familiar phrase. The planet exhibits a faint yellowish-red color when seen with the … Continue reading
Dione crossing Saturn's ring plane
April 16, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 17, 2013 Dione exhibits some unusual features that may indicate electrical forces at work. Recently, the Cassini-Solstice spacecraft made a close flyby of the moon Enceladus. As the Picture of the Day from May 3, 2012 discussed, the … Continue reading
The plaque attached to Pioneer 10 now billions of miles from the Sun. Credit: NASA/JPL
April 15, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 16, 2013 Scientists have found a small but significant deceleration in the Pioneer spacecraft as it makes its way through interstellar space. For several years, NASA analysts have reported a slow but steady “tug” on the Pioneer 10 and 11 … Continue reading
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April 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Apr 15, 2013 Radial filaments within galaxies identify them as plasma phenomena. “If a man does not know what port he is steering for, no wind is favorable to him.” — Seneca The irregular galaxy M82—otherwise known as the Cigar … Continue reading
Thousands of dune-like features on Titan. Credit: NASA/JPL/Cassini-Equinox.
April 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 12, 2013 How can dunes form in an environment “wet with hydrocarbons”? Dune formations have been found in four locations in the Solar System: Earth, Mars, Venus, and Titan. In one instance the average temperature ranges from between … Continue reading
Simulated position of the gas cloud's orbit (shown in red). Credit: ESO/MPE/Marc Schartmann
April 10, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 11, 2013 A cloud of interstellar gas and dust will soon be annihilated by a black hole in the center of our galaxy, astronomers say. According to a recent press release: “This is the first time ever that the … Continue reading
Three interacting galaxies: NGC 7173 (middle left), NGC 7174 (middle right), and NGC 7176 (lower right). Credit: NASA, ESA, and R. Sharples (University of Durham)
April 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 10, 2013 Galactic magnetic fields were discovered more than 50 years ago. Astronomers continue to ask basic questions about galaxies: what generates their magnetic fields? What gives those fields their shape and their strength? Researchers using the latest … Continue reading
Unnamed "pit-floor crater" on Mercury. Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Smithsonian Institution/Carnegie Institution of Washington
April 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 09, 2013 Rather than volcanic vents, pits in craters could be a sign of electrical activity. On August 3, 2004, NASA launched the Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSENGER) experiment from the Cape Canaveral facility on a 7-year … Continue reading
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April 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Apr 08, 2013 External electric flux influences Earth’s climate According to a recent press release, ten years of data analysis has revealed that cloud height changes over time in response to an electric field generated by “global thunderstorms”. Although Earth’s … Continue reading
Nebula Henize 3-1475. Credit: J. Borkowski, (North Carolina State University), J. Harrington, (University of Maryland), J. Blondin (North Carolina State University), M. Bobrowsky (Challenger Center for Space Science), M. Meixner (Space Telescope Science Institute), and C. Skinner (Space Telescope Science Institute).
April 4, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 05, 2013 Consensus opinions state that a star in the latter stages of its life will undergo violent upheavals as its supply of hydrogen fuel diminishes and the “ash” of heavier elements accumulates in its core. According to … Continue reading
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April 3, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 04, 2013 Did this ancient site experience a catastrophic end? Tiwanaku, or Tiahuanaco in Spanish, is a ruined citadel occupying almost 10 square kilometers in the Bolivian Andes at an altitude greater than 3800 meters. Carbon-14 dating methods … Continue reading
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April 2, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 03, 2013 The northern aurora is a highly energetic region. “It seems to be a natural consequence of our points of view to assume that the whole of space is filled with electrons and flying electric ions of … Continue reading
Saturn's rings are diffuse. Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
April 1, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 02, 2013 The Cassini-Solstice mission discovered that there might be more rings around Saturn than can be seen with telescopes. “It seems almost incredible that such a ring of cosmic dust should be able to exist for ever, … Continue reading
Orbital diagram of comet 2012 S1. Credit: JPL Small Body Database.
April 1, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Apr 01, 2013 Are comets “dirty snowballs”? Comet 2012 S1, an object approximately three kilometers in diameter, is presently inside the orbit of Jupiter. It is “remarkably bright” according to astronomers, although it is still millions of kilometers from … Continue reading
Galaxy NGC 7319. Arrow points to foreground high redshift quasar.
Credit: NASA/Hubble Space Telescope
March 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  March 29, 2013 Modern astronomy surely suffers from a kind of blindness. It is either a blindness of mind or one of practice. The continuing presence of Big Bang cosmology among those who are charged with increasing the store … Continue reading
"The Truth Lies Within" by Jim Muth.
March 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 28, 2013 Astronomical research in the virtual realm instigates foregone conclusions. “It is only because the majority opinion will always be opposed by some that our knowledge and understanding progress.” — Friedrich Hayek The most important issue separating … Continue reading
The 91 brightest gamma ray sources in the center of the Milky Way. Credit: ESA
March 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 27, 2013 So-called “dark matter” reactions are said to initiate gamma rays from the center of our galaxy. “We should remember that there was once a discipline called natural philosophy. Unfortunately, this discipline seems not to exist today. … Continue reading
The Crab Nebula pulsar, a theoretical neutron star. Credit: NASA/CXC/ASU/J. Hester et al.
March 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 26, 2013 Could there be “warped space-time” around so-called “neutron stars”? The smeared lines of an iron spectrum have given astronomers another mystery to solve when it comes to explaining the Universe. Using the XMM-Newton and the JAXA/NASA X-ray observatories, … Continue reading
Latest image of the quiet Sun from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) satellite (March 25, 2013). Credit: ESA/NASA
March 24, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 25, 2013 The Sun is not a fusion reactor. In a recent Picture of the Day, it was noted that sunspots are not well understood by astronomers. Furthermore, their bizarre electromagnetic displays are not readily explainable by models … Continue reading
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March 21, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
  Mar 21, 2013 Antarctica is now the coldest place on Earth. The Katabatic winds howl around Antarctica’s gale thrashed coast. But once its green valley’s were filled with thriving Glossopteris Pine and Beach forests. How do we know this? … Continue reading
Composite image of galaxy cluster MACSJ0717.5+3745 from HST and Chandra.
Credit: X-ray (NASA/CXC/IfA/C. Ma et al.); Optical (NASA/STScI/IfA/C. Ma et al.)
March 20, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 21, 2013 Astronomers have detected a strand of galaxies and gas flowing into a remote cluster. The predominant cosmological hypotheses within which most astronomers conduct their research are based on a gravity-only paradigm. Moving masses and heat are … Continue reading
The Great Red Spot on Jupiter surrounded by smaller rotating cells. Credit: Voyager 2/NASA-JPL.
March 19, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 20, 2013 Is the famous gyre on Jupiter the result of atmospheric convection? The red spot in Jupiter’s atmosphere has persisted for more than 300 years, at least as long as there have been telescopes on Earth able … Continue reading
Pencil Nebula. Credit: ESO
March 18, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Mar 19, 2013 This recent image of the Pencil Nebula from La Silla Observatory showcases a cosmic counterpart to “hair” discharges from Tesla coils. Electric forces separate the plasma into parallel filaments. Magnetic forces further constrict them (the “z pinch”) and … Continue reading
UV image of a 100,000 kilometer exploding solar filament (August 31, 2012). Credit: NASA/SDO/GSFC.
March 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 18, 2013 The intensity of the Sun’s magnetic field and solar wind periodically decline to low levels but explosive events are possible. On August 25, 1997, NASA launched the Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE) satellite on a mission to … Continue reading
Evolution of an artist’s illustration into an inside-out star
March 14, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  March 15, 2013 Is Cassiopeia A (Cas A) dying or just changing her fashion? Bio 1: In the beginning was an artist’s illustration of the consensus theory of stellar evolution. Thermonuclear fusion reactions at the center of the star … Continue reading
Blue circles mark the dark galaxies that are theoretically illuminated by the red-circled quasar. Credit: ESO, Digitized Sky Survey 2 and S. Cantalupo (UCSC)
March 13, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Mar 14, 2013 Astronomers have finally observed “dark galaxies,” proving again that if you look hard enough for what you believe, you’ll find it (or something that’s close enough). Dark galaxies, like the many other dark things in modern … Continue reading
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March 12, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 13, 2013 Dark mode plasma phenomena exist on the Sun. The image at the top of the page is the most detailed ever taken of the Sun’s chromosphere. The smallest features are 130 kilometers in size. Each spicule … Continue reading
Europa, Earth and the Moon
March 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 12, 2013 Could an ocean of liquid water exist on Europa? According to a recent press release, “Sending a submarine to the bottom of the ocean on Jupiter’s icy moon Europa is the most exciting potential mission in planetary … Continue reading
Galaxy NGC 1068 reveals a powerful stream of X-rays emerging from its nucleus.
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/MIT/UCSB/P.Ogle et al.; Optical: NASA/STScI/A.Capetti et al.
March 10, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  March 11, 2013 Supermassive black holes are said to generate galactic winds. “Black holes are where God divided by zero.” — Stephen Wright In a previous Picture of the Day, It was suggested that X-ray jets from a galactic … Continue reading
Galaxy NGC 7793. Credit: ESO
March 8, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 08, 2013 An electromagnetic phenomenon on the fringes of galaxy NGC 7793 is confounding astronomers because they insist on seeing it as a gravitational superforce. Explaining the jets of ionized particles often seen erupting from various objects in … Continue reading
The Sun is not an oblate spheroid.
March 7, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Mar 07, 2013 Astronomers have recently taken more precise measurements of the Sun’s shape over several years. They found that it was rounder and less variable than they expected from theory. If gravity and centrifugal force from its rotation … Continue reading
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March 5, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Mar 06, 2013 Cold dark matter theory might be in need of serious revision. Dark matter theory makes the news every once in awhile. Although cold dark matter (CDM) gets its name from the idea that it cannot be … Continue reading
'Thunderstones' in the form of fulgurites
March 5, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Mar 05, 2012 Leaving no stone unturned, some thunderstones may have acquired their association with lightning in still other ways. As mentioned in part three of this article, a future realisation that the Australites may actually have precipitated within the past … Continue reading
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March 4, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Mar 04, 2013 ‘Thunderstones’ in the form of tektites – Did human beings watch them falling? As an additional possibility of no small importance, the concept of the thunderstone may have been sparked by a conflation of lightning with … Continue reading
‘Thunderstones’ in the form of fossil belemnites (Belemnitidia)
February 28, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  March 01, 2013 That many a thunderstone earned the sobriquet by virtue of its exposure during a thunderstorm strikes one as correct to a degree. Intellectual lassitude perfuses the attempts of those who blamed the conception of the thunderstone … Continue reading
'Thunderstones' in the form of prehistoric flint arrowheads
February 28, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Feb 28, 2013 The thunderstone is familiar from the folklore of virtually every culture, but plays no ‘roll’ in the serious sciences. In the eyes of most, the proposition that thunderbolts deposit rocks is an asinine artefact of superstitious … Continue reading
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February 27, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 27, 2013 Our fortunes are inextricably connected to the Sun’s activity.  Now that is the wisdom of a man, in every instance of his labor, to hitch his wagon to a star, and see his chore done by the … Continue reading
Looping solar prominence. Credit: NASA/Goddard Spaceflight Center
February 26, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 26, 2013 Heliophysicists acknowledge the role of plasma in solar eruptions but miss important aspects of its behavior. In Bengal to move at all Is seldom, if ever, done, But mad dogs and Englishmen Go out in the … Continue reading
An iron meteorite fallen at Henbury, Australia, in c. 4,200 BP and found in 1931. Courtesy National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, United States of America.
February 25, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Feb 25, 2013 Other credible reports of electrophonic bolides introduce severe accompaniments not normally associated with meteors in current awareness. People at the headwaters of the Murray River, presumably of Wiradjuri stock again, remembered an occasion well before 1925 … Continue reading
Small pieces of meteorite debris, collected in c. 1900 by Johann Georg Reuther at Killalpaninna Mission, South Australia. These were known to native people as “emu eyes” (warukati milki tandra). Courtesy South Australian Museum, Adelaide, Australia.
February 21, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Shortly after dawn on 15 February 2013, a large meteor exploded over Chelyabinsk (Russia), generating a shockwave that injured some 1,200 people. According to the popular media, no other bolide on record is known to have caused so many … Continue reading
Gamma ray "bubbles" and a tilted jet are seen erupting from the center of the Milky Way in this artist's conception. Credit: David A. Aguilar/CfA
February 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 21, 2013 Astronomers continue to ignore electricity in space, opting for outdated ideas about gravity and heat. Recently, astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics announced that our own Milky Way galaxy is expelling enormous jets of gamma … Continue reading
Exotic geological formation in Namibia. Credit: Google Earth
February 20, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Feb 20, 2013 It has the body of a snake and the head of a lion. It has legs that end in clawed feet. It often has wings: it flies, or at least it comes from the sky. It … Continue reading
Filaments of dust obscure starlight near the center of the Milky Way. Credit: ESO
February 18, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Feb 19, 2013 It twists like a Birkeland Current; it’s stringy like a Birkeland Current; it’s dense like a Birkeland Current; but Everyone Knows (if they want to pursue a career in astronomy) that There is No Such Thing … Continue reading
Supernova remnant W49B. X-ray in blue and green, radio in pink, optical in yellow. Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/MIT/L.Lopez et al.; Infrared: Palomar; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA
February 18, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Feb 18, 2013 Is this an image of a supernova remnant around a black hole? An exploding double layer in a galactic circuit? A mythical creation event in another planetary system? An unnamed formation in an unimagined process? Theories … Continue reading
The Raymondi (1200-200 BCE).
February 15, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Feb 15, 2013 Even the lonely monuments left behind have a story to tell. Chavín de Huantar, in the Peruvian Andes, is one of many civilisations to have preceded the mighty Inca empire. The occupants of the ruins have … Continue reading
A giant crater on Iapetus. Credit: NASA
February 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 14, 2012 Is it gravity and heat that cause landslides on Iapetus? Recently, the science journal Nature Geoscience described giant, icy landslides that are supposedly taking place on the Saturnian moon Iapetus. According to the report, it is frictional heating … Continue reading
Global distribution of cultures with traditions of a ‘low sky’. Additional examples continue to be registered. © Marinus Anthony van der Sluijs
February 13, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Feb 13, 2013 Most researchers address ‘known’ questions, such as ‘what causes ice ages?’, ‘how far is the moon?’ or ‘where did the ancestors of the human species live?’. Comparative mythologists face the double challenge of seeking answers to … Continue reading
Orion Nebula
February 12, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 12, 2013 What causes the rapid changes observed in Orion Nebula “protostars”? Using a combination of NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and the ESA Herschel Space Observatory, astronomers found that so-called “young stars” are changing in brightness much faster … Continue reading
Planck image showing carbon monoxide distribution in the galactic plane
February 10, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 11, 2013 Astronomers continue to cling to outmoded theories of star formation The European Space Agency (ESA) launched the Planck telescope platform on May 19, 2009 into an orbit around Lagrange point L2. Planck is designed to analyze the cosmic microwave … Continue reading
Design of a "squatterman" stylised as a lizard in the headdress of a wooden figure representing the first ancestor, Senufo people, Ivory Coast (mid-twentieth century). Courtesy National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, United States of America.
February 7, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  Feb 08, 2013 A common theme in creation myths is that the first human being appeared in the sky, often as a metamorphosis of a divine creator. On Tahiti, people remembered the time before creation when “an expanse of … Continue reading
A detail from the Hubble Ultra Deep Field image
February 7, 2013 by B Talbott
  Feb  07, 2013 A new theory states that dark matter might prevent stars from aging normally and preserve them for billions of years. According to astronomers, the Universe is almost 14 billion years old. It started out with a … Continue reading
0-0-0-earthquake-storms
February 6, 2013 by Peter Mungo Jupp
Feb 06, 2013 Some four thousand years ago, the civilizations of the world were obliterated by a catastrophic series of events. Earthquakes are natures deadliest killers! A storm of earthquakes totally buried and destroyed cities throughout the Middle East less … Continue reading
Pluto and its five moons are considered to be Kuiper Belt Objects.
Credit: NASA, ESA, and M. Showalter (SETI Institute)
February 5, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 05, 2013 According to astronomers and their theories about the Solar System, the space beyond Neptune is getting stranger all the time. Near the end of the eighteenth century the nebular hypothesis was born. It grew in popularity … Continue reading
Iapetus
February 4, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Feb 04, 2013 The Cassini space probe’s flyby of Iapetus confirms its electrical attributes. The closest images of Iapetus ever taken came from the Cassini spacecraft as it flew to within 5000 kilometers of its target, resolving features as … Continue reading
The Comet Galaxy (upper left) in galaxy cluster Abell 2667. Credit: NASA, ESA, Jean-Paul Kneib (Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille)
January 31, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Feb 01, 2013 Galactic tails, bright comas, and central nuclei are reminiscent of comets. What is a comet? Most astronomers think comets are small, fragile, irregularly shaped objects composed mostly of water ice and dust, along with carbon and silicon-based … Continue reading
Plasma "tornadoes" on the Sun
January 31, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 31, 2013 Strands of magnetically confined plasma can be seen throughout the cosmos. A rotating vortex of solar plasma was the topic of a recent press release. Does that phenomenon relate to other energetic vortices? Previous Picture of the … Continue reading
Galaxy clusters such as Abell 2151 in the constellation Hercules are powerful X-ray emitters.
Credit: Tony Hallas
January 30, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 30, 2013 What takes place in thunderstorms on Earth is most likely a smaller version of large scale phenomena. “I have always believed that astrophysics should be the extrapolation of laboratory physics, that we must begin from the … Continue reading
Polar cloud vortex on Titan. Image credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
January 29, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 29, 2013 Images from Cassini seem to indicate deltas and river channels. Could electricity have formed these features on Titan? Recent data from the Cassini-Solstice mission is said to reveal oceans of liquid ethane, in one case occupying an … Continue reading
Left: 3mm crater electrically etched in sandstone. Credit: C. J. Ransom, VEMASAT Labs.
Right: 150 meter Martian “skylight”. Original image credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
January 28, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 28, 2013 Plasma discharge experiments replicate Martian features. On Mars, craters, canyons, dunes and many other features do not readily correspond to contemporary theories about their evolution. Dunes that do not align with the direction of the prevailing … Continue reading
Wide angle close-up of Mercury. Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
January 25, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 25, 2013 The MESSENGER space probe continues to illustrate the Electric Universe theory. MESSENGER has been in orbit around Mercury since March 17, 2011. Since that time, it has sent hundreds of close-up images of the surface, revealing … Continue reading
A visualization of the dark matter halo surrounding a large cluster of galaxies.
January 24, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 24, 2012 Dark matter is in the news. “Plasma phenomena are scalable. Their electrical and physical properties remain the same, independent of the size of the plasma.” — Donald Scott, author of The Electric Sky Plasma in space … Continue reading
Bob Kobres, Immanuel Velikovsky (1978)
January 23, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  From left to right: F. Gutekunst, Ignatius Loyola Donnelly (c. 1898). Courtesy Minnesota Historical Society, Saint Paul, Minnesota. Anonymous, William Comyns Beaumont (date unknown). Bob Kobres, Immanuel Velikovsky (1978)   Jan 23, 2012 In bestsellers published in 1882 and 1883, the American politician and amateur … Continue reading
Jacob Ferdinand Voet
January 22, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  From left to right: Jacob Ferdinand Voet, Thomas Burnet (1675). Courtesy National Portrait Gallery, London. William Whiston (18th century), anonymous. Giovanni Rinaldo of Carli-Rubbi (date unknown). Jan 22, 2012 Ever since 1950, ‘Velikovsky’ has been a household name, associated … Continue reading
The north pole of Phobos. Credit: ESA/DLR/FU Berlin (G. Neukum)
January 21, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 21, 2013 Did meteor bombardment scar Phobos? Phobos is the largest of the two moons of Mars. Deimos is so small that studying its surface has been problematic for astronomers because it cannot be readily observed from Earth. … Continue reading
Galaxy Cluster 2XMM J083026+524133 (blue). Original image credit: G. Lamer et al.
January 18, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 18, 2013 A distant galaxy cluster is said to exhibit evidence for an unknown force. Not a single reference is made to the most powerful known force in the Universe: electricity. The European Space Agency’s XMM Newton X-ray … Continue reading
The Eagle Nebula (M16). Credit: T.A.Rector (NRAO/AUI/NSF and NOAO/AURA/NSF) and B.A.Wolpa (NOAO/AURA/NSF)
January 17, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 17, 2013 Spiraling filaments suggest electric currents in space. Dust at a temperature near absolute zero shows up in the image above as a blue fog deep in the heart of the Eagle nebula. The Eagle nebula, located … Continue reading
Drawing of the Aurora Borealis
January 16, 2013 by Rens van der Sluijs
  July 18, 2012 In June 2012, a team of 4 Japanese researchers revealed in Nature that “an extremely energetic event occurred around our space environment in AD 775.” An analysis of Japanese cedar trees showed a “rapid increase” in … Continue reading
The Vela supernova remnant
January 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 15, 2013 Some so-called “neutron star pulsars” are said to create nebulae as they spin. The standard model of stellar evolution proposes that pulsars are neutron stars rotating at incredible speed. For example, PSR J1748-2446ad, in the globular … Continue reading
The Vela Pulsar Wind Nebula at hard X-ray energies (18 to 40 keV, blue), soft X-ray emissions (0.5 to 2 keV and 2.5 to 12 keV, green and cyan), and high energy gamma-rays (1 TeV and above, magenta). Credit: ESA/INTEGRAL/IBIS-ISGRI/F. Mattana et al./ROSAT/H.E.S.S. /Spacelab 2
January 14, 2013 by Stephen Smith
   Jan 14, 2013 Extreme magnetic fields in space are said to be caused by the high-speed rotation of neutron stars. Several previous Picture of the Day articles discuss the problem of neutron stars and how they affect the progress … Continue reading
The Rotten Egg Nebula. Credit: NASA, ESA, William B. Latter (SIRTF Science Center/California Institute of Technology), John H. Bieging (University of Arizona), Casey Meakin (University of Arizona), A.G.G.M. Tielens (Kapteyn Astronomical Institute), Aditya Dayal (IPAC/NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory), Joseph L. Hora (Center for Astrophysics), and Douglas M. Kelly (University of Arizona).
January 11, 2013 by Stephen Smith
Jan 11, 2013 The Universe behaves according to the laws of plasma dynamics. In every science journal discussing the behavior of planetary nebulae, the prevailing opinion usually involves gases and dust “blowing” through them, as well as “winds” created by … Continue reading
Colliding galaxy clusters
January 10, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Jan 10, 2012 El Gordo is so called because it is the biggest, brightest, and hottest pair of colliding galaxy clusters known to astronomers. Astronomers “know” that El Gordo is over 7 billion light-years from Earth. This knowledge derives from the … Continue reading
600 kilometer per hour winds on Jupiter. Credit: NASA/Cassini Mission.
January 9, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 09, 2013 Why do planets farthest from the Sun have the fastest winds? Earth’s average wind speed is approximately 56 kilometers per hour, with a maximum of 372 kilometer per hour gust recorded on Mount Washington, New Hampshire … Continue reading
Surface granulation on the Sun
January 7, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 09, 2013 How the Sun’s interior generates its magnetic field is a long-standing mystery for heliophysicists. It is commonly believed that there is an electromagnetic dynamo inside the Sun. That dynamo has long been thought to be powered … Continue reading
Galaxy cluster RDCS 1252.9-2927. Purple color indicates x-ray emissions.
Credit: X-ray NASA/CXC/ESO/P.Rosati et al. Optical: ESO/VLT/P.Rosati et al.
January 6, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 07, 2013 Was the early Universe powered by “dark matter annihilation”? According to modern cosmologists, the Universe is composed primarily of dark matter. More than 95% of all that exists is unseen and undetectable by the most sensitive … Continue reading
Infrared image of the Small Magellanic Cloud. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI.
January 4, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 04, 2013 What do a planet-sized, frigid moon and a small galaxy have in common? The Magellanic Clouds consist of two dwarf galaxies in proximity to the Milky Way. According to astronomers, they are orbiting our galaxy and … Continue reading
Artist's illustration of a hypothetical dust ring around a star. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
January 3, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 03, 2013 What happened to the ring of dust circling TYC 8241 2652 in the constellation Centaurus? A recent press release expresses surprise and confusion about the absence of a stellar dust ring that seems to have vanished without a … Continue reading
New infrared image of the Helix Nebula in Aquarius
January 2, 2013 by Mel Acheson
  Jan 02, 2013 A recent image of the Helix Nebula in the constellation Aquarius exposes more details of its electrical structure. The new infrared image shows radial Birkeland currents (called “strands” in the press release) crossing the concentric rings and … Continue reading
Callisto transformed by Zeus into a constellation
January 1, 2013 by Stephen Smith
  Jan 01, 2013 The Galileo mission’s exploration of Jupiter and its environs provided substantial evidence for the Electric Universe hypothesis. The Galileo spacecraft was launched October 18, 1989, following a delay of several years while NASA recovered from the Challenger … Continue reading

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