Tag Archives: space

A to Z Challenge Begins! The Jay Dee Show 26

I seemed to delayed with everything this past week. Well, here we are with some videos. And the A to Z Challenge has begun! I uploaded only one video for my main channel, but I have two for you from my science channel!

On my main channel, my regular weekly Authors Answer has continued. This time, I talked about the validity and legality of fanfiction.

Over on my science channel, I started off April with a bang. And it’s going to be a very busy month on that channel.

The first video I posted is the first of the A to Z Challenge videos, this time featuring the letter A and Alpha Centauri.

And then I made a video about what was to come in April and some changes I have in store for science news.

And that’s all for this week. Expect 6 videos a week from my science channel, and 2 or 3 from my main channel throughout April. It’ll be pretty productive!

Which videos did you enjoy? Let me know in the comments below.

A Is for Alpha Centauri

Here it is! It’s the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge! Two years ago, I participated in it, and now I’m doing it again. This time, I have a science theme, and I am featuring videos.

For the first topic, we have Alpha Centauri. Check out the video below. After the video, the facts are available for you to read.

  1. It’s a triple star system 4.37 ly from the sun.
  2. Alpha Centauri A is also known as Rigil Kentaurus, while Alpha Centauri C is known as Proxima Centauri. B has no other name.
  3. Alpha Centauri A is a G2 yellow dwarf star similar to the sun, although 10% brighter and 23% larger.
  4. Alpha Centauri B is a K1 orange dwarf star 90% the mass and 14% smaller radius than the sun.
  5. Proxima Centauri is an M6 class red dwarf star with 0.123 solar masses.
  6. Proxima Centauri orbits the AB pair at a massive distance of 15,000 AU or 0.24 light years, though it’s not completely certain it is a member of the system.
  7. Discovered in 2012, Alpha Centauri Bb was an extrasolar planet that was found in 2015 to be an artefact of data analysis. It doesn’t exist.
  8. In 2016, Proxima Centauri b was announced. It’s an extrasolar planet a bit larger than the earth, but is in the star’s habitable zone. It’s likely to be tidally locked, making life difficult to take hold. It’s also likely to be one of the easiest extrasolar planets to study in the near future because of it’s proximity.
  9. The Alpha Centauri system is estimated to be between 4.5 and 7 billion years old, around the same age of our sun or older.
  10. Due to Proxima Centauri being a flare star, life may never have a chance to become established on b because the flares may strip the planet of its atmosphere.

Coming on Monday is the letter B, which will have a more biological topic. Comments are always welcome!

Planetarium Software

I found some really good free planetarium software. It’s called Stellarium. Today, I was able to use this software, but I’m going to download it and use it at home.

You see, I’m going to be using this software at work extensively. This should give you an idea about what I’m going to be doing. When I said I’ll be using my university degree in my job, I meant it. I’ll be educating people on astronomy and physics. But that’s not all. There’s something else I’m not telling you, and I think that will remain a secret for now. Sorry!

What I’ve been able to do with this software is look at stars, nebulae, galaxies, planets, and the Moon. I’ve looked at the movement of Jupiter’s moons over time, watched the Moon’s phases, and examine the night sky around 100,000 years in the past and future. There’s a lot more I can do, and I’ll explore it as much as I can before I start using it at work.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I’m finally using my university degree in a job! Do you use your degree in your job?

Plumes Spotted on Europa

Take a look at this image.

Credits: NASA/ESA/W. Sparks (STScI)/USGS Astrogeology Science Center
Credits: NASA/ESA/W. Sparks (STScI)/USGS Astrogeology Science Center

Just what is this? Well, it’s Europa superimposed on an image of Europa taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. See that white stuff coming from the bottom left? That seems so similar to what we’ve seen from Enceladus. That’s a possible water plume!

So, what does this mean? It means that water is making it to the surface of Europa. This also means that we may have a much easier time accessing the water than we thought. We already have an extremely good idea about the internal structure of Europa, which likely includes a very deep liquid water ocean. Europa is one of the best candidates for life in the solar system, and with upcoming missions to Europa and the other icy moons of Jupiter coming soon, we’ll have an excellent opportunity to know what the composition of this water is. It’s suspected to be salty, but how salty is it? And does it support life?

This is very exciting. What do you think?

Continuing My No Man’s Sky Adventure

I played a bit more No Man’s Sky today, and made some pretty good progress. But let me show you the third planet I visited.

That is so pink! The first two planets were much more subdued in colour, but this one was so brightly coloured. It’s like the fluorescent planet with pink grass.

From where I left off yesterday, I managed to get my hyperdrive and a warp cell, so I can travel to another system. However, I haven’t explored all the planets in my home system. I’ve made it to my third planet, and still have a fourth planet to explore.

So, starting at the second planet, I was able to get my hyperdrive installed, and I went searching around for fuel. I needed antimatter. I found an installation that had a door sealed with steel. I tried destroying that, but I was then attacked by a couple sentinel drones, which I destroyed. Then they sent elite sentinels after me! I don’t have a weapon yet! I only have the mining laser. I ran for my ship and took off, going straight up into space. I went to the space station, did some trading, and decided to head to the third planet. But before I went, I got a transmission from the second planet to come back to an outpost I visited before. I actually got some antimatter at that outpost earlier on, and now they were asking me to come back. I went down, and the alien there asked me for some titanium. I went out searching for it, came back, and he changed his mind. He wanted carbon! I gave him carbon, and in exchange he gave me… carbon? What was the point of that?

Anyway, that’s when I decided to get off the planet and head to the third planet. I haven’t explored it much, but I did check out a beautiful cave filled with colourful minerals.

Some other things that happened included going swimming in a small pond on the second planet, which is about 30% water. I discovered many kinds of plants, animals, and minerals. I also renamed all the animals and planets. I haven’t done the plants yet, though. You see, when you discover something, you have the right to name them whatever you want (but don’t bypass censors), and you get money! And if you discover all animals on a planet, you get a lot of money. My first and third planets have eight or nine species to discover, but the second planet is totally devoid of animals. Only plants.

The first planet is considered balmy, but it’s actually quite hot, requiring me to use thermal shielding in my suit. Also, it has active volcanic vents. The second planet is also balmy, but it’s far more comfortable, and quite earth-like, except it has less water and only plants. The third planet is humid, nice temperature, and very colourful.

I’m thinking of keeping track of all the planets and showing you a picture of what I see. I’m not playing this game on my own computer, so no screenshots. Only photos. What do you think? Let me know in the comments below.

No Man’s Sky – First Impressions

No_Man's_SkyNo Man’s Sky, the game I’ve been waiting for my entire life to play. When I saw gameplay several months ago, I wanted this game so badly, I thought time would go by too slowly. Well, it came out last week. And this morning, I got to play it for myself for the first time.

What I’ve Done So Far

I started out on a rather hot planet with strange fan-like plants and active volcanic vents near my damaged ship. The fissure gave off a smoky gas once. The sky was often yellow with dark clouds. I searched the area to find resources and repair the ship. I walked to a shelter, found some new technology, gathered carbon, plutonium, and iron, then found I needed some zinc. It took me a long time to find that. I eventually got my ship repaired, and I could fly around.

During my exploration period, I discovered several shelters, a mining facility, and a few other things that weren’t manned. I was able to fly to space, but I didn’t have fuel for my pulse engine. Thamium9 was hard to find! I looked around, found a couple ruins where I learned some Gek words, classified a couple of animals, and noticed several ship going in one direction. I followed them, got lost for a few minutes, then found where they were going: a manufacturing facility. It was manned! And I finally had some new technology and access to the galactic trading system (can’t recall what it’s called at the moment). I bought some Thamium9, then found out that there’s a ruin nearby. I flew to the ruin, and learned several languages. I am in very good standing with the Gek. They have partner status now.

So, after that, I flew to space and went straight for a space station where I did some trading, and located a beacon on another planet. On my way to that other planet, I ran out of Thamium9. But, I discovered that the asteroids are made of Thamium9. Lucky! I eventually made it to this new world, which has a lot of water on the surface! Lakes! I landed, and that’s where my game ended.

I’ll be playing more this week. My next objective is to build a hyperdrive and be able to fly to other star systems. However, I’ll explore all of the planets in my home system first. I want to be thorough. And I’d like to discover all of the animals, too. I’m an explorer. I want to know everything there is to know in each system I visit.

My First Impressions

Be prepared for repetitive actions! The mining and searching for resources may bore some people, but I have no problems with that. I love exploring, and that’s what this allows me to do. Some of the landscapes are incredible. The first time that sentinels came flying around me after I mined some plutonium, it felt quite creepy.

It’s a beautiful game, and I’d love to play it in a full VR environment. That would be incredible! The chance to discover new worlds and animals, as well as aliens is so fascinating. I’ve only scratched the surface of this game, but I’m loving it. The time I played passed so quickly, I didn’t realise how long I’d actually played. It’s addictive.

I can see myself spending hours on this game. It’s too easy to get immersed in it. I have to watch the time I spend on it. I could live in it all day. If I were to give it a star rating for the limited time I’ve played, I’d give it full 5 stars. It’s that good (at least for me).

How About You?

Have you played it yet? What have you done so far? Let me know in the comments below.

Taking a Journey Through the Solar System – The Grand Tour

Ever wanted to go to space? How about a tour of the entire Solar System? That’s what you get with this book.

Four years ago, I reviewed this book when it was in better condition. It’s called The Grand Tour: A Traveler’s Guide to the Solar System. This time, I did a review on video. And you get to see how the book is falling apart. Still a good book!

Honestly, I love this book. The art and photos are beautiful. If you love space and astronomy, I definitely recommend this book.

Let me know what you think in the comments below.