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Copernical Team

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Scores of internet-providing satellites will soon streak across Canada's skies, but at what cost?
Researchers at U of T, UBC and the University of Regina are studying the light pollution that would be created by tens of thousands of new internet satellites scheduled to be launched in the coming years. Credit: Dave Mantel/iStockphoto

The night sky is going to get much busier thanks to thousands of new internet satellites set to launch over the next few years—and researchers say it's going to affect Canada more than most places on Earth.

Researchers from the University of Toronto, the University of Regina and the University of British Columbia found that most pollution is expected to happen near 50 degrees latitude north and south due to the orbits of the new satellites.

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NASA’s mixtape for extraterrestrial civilizations
Fanny Peabody Professor of Music Alex Rehding speaks about a new book he co-authored on the Golden Record and a new approach to music theory. He is pictured outside the acoustically-designed archway of Sever Hall in Harvard Yard at Harvard University. Credit: Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer

In 1977, NASA created two LP records with tracks of global music, greetings in different languages, sounds of the planet, and sonified images, and then attached them to the two robotic probes launched that year as part of the Voyager space mission bound for the outer solar system and beyond. This Golden Record, said Alexander Rehding, Fanny Peabody Professor of Music, is "effectively a mixtape for extraterrestrial civilizations, a sign that we exist and a glimpse of what human culture is about.

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Could low-altitude reconnection power Jupiter’s polar aurorae?
This composite image shows the location of Jupiter’s northern aurorae, as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. Strong auroral activity occurs very near the pole, a feature unique in the solar system to Jupiter. Credit: NASA, ESA, and J. Nichols, University of Leicester

Like Earth, Jupiter's magnetic field channels electrically charged particles into its atmosphere, resulting in the formation of brilliant aurorae near its poles. However, the brightness and variety of Jupiter's auroral emissions exceed those generated on our planet. Of particular interest are patches of emission that originate from even closer to the poles than the main aurorae, a feature that appears far stronger at Jupiter than at Earth or Saturn.

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Tucson AZ (SPX) Sep 20, 2021
While black holes and toddlers don't seem to have much in common, they are remarkably similar in one aspect: Both are messy eaters, generating ample evidence that a meal has taken place. But whereas one might leave behind droppings of pasta or splatters of yogurt, the other creates an aftermath of mind-boggling proportions. When a black hole gobbles up a star, it produces what astronomers
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Leeds UK (SPX) Sep 20, 2021
Analysis of unique "fingerprints" in light emitted from material surrounding young stars has revealed "significant reservoirs" of large organic molecules necessary to form the basis of life. Dr John Ilee, Research Fellow at the University of Leeds who led the study, says the findings suggest that the basic chemical conditions that resulted in life on Earth could exist more widely across th
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Heidelberg, Germany (SPX) Sep 20, 2021
Using radio data from the ALMA observatory and physical modelling, astronomers led by Kamber Schwarz (Max Planck Institute for Astronomy and University of Arizona) have managed to determine the mass of a potential "planet factory," the protoplanetary disk around the star GM Aurigae. From their reconstruction, which includes a determination of the disk's temperature profile, the astronomers deduc
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Paris, France (SPX) Sep 20, 2021
Mushballs - giant, slushy hailstones made from a mixture of ammonia and water - may be responsible for an atmospheric anomaly at Neptune and Uranus that has been puzzling scientists. A study presented by Tristan Guillot at the Europlanet Science Congress (EPSC) 2021 shows that mushballs could be highly effective at carrying ammonia deep into the ice giants' atmospheres, hiding the gas from detec
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Beijing (XNA) Sep 20, 2021
Having worked in the space station core module Tianhe for three months - the longest-ever human space mission in the Chinese history, three "taikonauts" of the Shenzhou-12 crew returned to Earth on Friday, hitting a new milestone in China's space exploration. With a resolution for self-reliance in aerospace technology and an open mind for international cooperation, these years China has be
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Washington DC (SPX) Sep 18, 2021
The Defense Department relies on nuclear-armed bombers, submarines and intercontinental ballistic missiles, as well as space-based sensors, to provide a strategic deterrence umbrella for the homeland and to protect deployed forces, allies and partners. However, sensitive microelectronics used in these assets could be vulnerable to high levels of ionizing radiation caused by a number of fac
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St Louis MO (SPX) Sep 21, 2021
Water is essential for life on Earth and other planets, and scientists have found ample evidence of water in Mars' early history. But Mars has no liquid water on its surface today. New research from Washington University in St. Louis suggests a fundamental reason: Mars may be just too small to hold onto large amounts of water. Remote sensing studies and analyses of Martian meteorites datin
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