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NASA discovers Hidden Portals in space between the Earth and the Sun

NASA has turned science fiction into science fact by announcing the discovery of hidden ‘portals’ in Earth’s magnetic field.

Called X-points or electron diffusion regions, rather than being intergalactic folds in space leading to different galaxies and planets, these portals aid in the transfer of the magnetic field from the Sun to Earth.

Essentially, these portals aid in the transfer of tons of magnetically charged particles that flow from the Sun causing the northern and southern lights and geomagnetic storms.

A NASA funded research project has discovered the existence of unexplained portals between the Earth and the Sun

‘We call them X-points or electron diffusion regions,’ said University of Iowa plasma physicist Jack Scudder, who is studying them.

‘They’re places where the magnetic field of Earth connects to the magnetic field of the Sun, creating an uninterrupted path leading from our own planet to the sun’s atmosphere 93 million miles away.’

Surrounding the Earth at distances from 10,000 to 30,000 miles away, the portals have been observed by NASA’s THEMIS spacecraft and Europe’s Cluster probes.

In 2014, the U.S. space agency will launch a new mission called Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission (MMS) which will consist of four spacecraft which will circle the earth to locate and then study the ‘X-points’

Usually the Earth's magnetic field deflects particles from directly traveling to the Earth, but the portals provide a direct route to our atmosphere

Usually the Earth’s magnetic field deflects particles from directly traveling to the Earth, but the portals provide a direct route to our atmosphere

Specifically where the Earth and the Sun’s magnetic fields connect and where the unexplained portals are formed.

While Scudder and his team at the University if Iowa are unclear as to what the portals are yet, they have observed charged particles flowing through them, causing electro-magnetic phenomemon in the Earth’s atmosphere.

‘Magnetic portals are invisible, unstable and elusive. They open and close without warning and there are no signposts to guide us in,’ said Scudder.

Some of the portals are miniscule and disappear almost instantly, while some are large and fairly stable.

The magnetic force of lines between the Earth and the Sun is outlined here and it when these lines cross that portals can form

The magnetic force of lines between the Earth and the Sun is outlined here and it when these lines cross that portals can form

‘Magnetic portals are invisible, unstable and elusive. They open and close without warning and there are no signposts to guide us in,’ said Scudder.

Looking forward to the launch of the MMS mission in 2014, Scudder and his team have calibrated the technology sufficiently to locate the portals.

‘We have found five simple combinations of magnetic field and energetic particle measurements that tell us when we’ve come across a X-point,’ said Scudder.

‘A single spacecraft, properly instrumented, can make these measurements.’

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Space

Cosmic Rays from Distant Binary Star System Eta Carinae, Bombarding Earth

For years, Earth has been bombarded by cosmic rays emanating from a mysterious source astronomers couldn’t identify. Now, new research conducted with the help of NASA’s NuSTAR space telescope has finally tracked down the source of these rays: Eta Carinae, a binary star system just 10,000 light-years away. In an event called the Great Eruption of 1838, the system created a stunning hourglass nebula in a tremendous burst of energy that temporarily made it the second-brightest object in the night sky.

According to Fiona Harrison, the principal investigator of NuSTAR: “We’ve known for some time that the region around Eta Carinae is the source of energetic emission in high-energy X-rays and gamma rays. But until NuSTAR was able to pinpoint the radiation, show it comes from the binary and study its properties in detail, the origin was mysterious.”

The powerful cosmic radiation is caused, in part, by two currents of stellar wind colliding as they swirl around the twin stars. These winds then create shockwaves that boost the strength of the X-rays and gamma rays also being emitted. According to Kenji Hamaguchi, of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center: “We know the blast waves of exploded stars can accelerate cosmic ray particles to speeds comparable to that of light, an incredible energy boost. Similar processes must occur in other extreme environments. Our analysis indicates Eta Carinae is one of them.”

Discovering the source of these cosmic rays helps astronomers to understand a bit more about Eta Carinae, which is still something of a mystery: scientists have no idea what caused its famous “eruption” in 1838 which, by all rights, should have ended in a supernova.

Although Earth’s magnetosphere keeps us safe from (most) radiation, cosmic rays might actually be increasing around our planet. This makes space travel more deadly than it already is. And if the amount of radiation keeps increasing, we might find out the limits of our atmosphere the hard way.

Source: A Star’s Echo by OuterPlaces

Chris Mahon
Outer Places
Headline image: © Pixabay Composite

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NASA Just Released First Close-Up Images Of Ceres’ Mysterious Bright Spots

NASA has released some high-resolution images that give a close-up look at the mysterious bright spots of Ceres.

The images come courtesy of the NASA Dawn spacecraft, which at the moment, is at the lowest orbit of the planet.

Bright Spots Are No Alien Cities

The amazing photographs reveal the salt deposit in the southwest region of Cerealia Facula, which is located in the Occator Crater of Ceres. The Dawn spacecraft captured the photographs on June 22.

High-Resolution Images Courtesy of NASA Dawn Spacecraft

The Dawn spacecraft is able to send back superb high-resolution photographs showing the rugged surface with scientists having been intrigued by the bright spots of the Occator Crater. The spots can be clearly seen in the high-res photos due to the fact they stand out against what is essentially a dark background. They are something the public along with scientists were amazed ever since Dawn first discovered them in 2015 when arriving at Ceres.

On June 6, the spacecraft was at its lowest orbit and since then has managed to send back many thousands of images along with data that has given scientists a lot more information about Ceres.

One thing that has baffled scientists is how Ceres evolved over time along with how it manages to remain geologically active even though the planet is relatively small in comparison to other planets.

Data Has Exceeded All Expectations of NASA

NASA said the latest images to come from Ceres have a resolution that is less than 5 meters per pixel. The framing camera lead investigator, Dr. Andreas Nathues said, “The data exceeds all our expectations.”

NASA showed an image taken in February 2015 of Ceres, with the image sparking interest in the bright spots, which at that time remained even more of a mystery than they are today. It was said they took on the appearance of alien headlights. After more analysis, it was determined they were, in fact, salt deposits.

Dawn Spacecraft is Just 22 Miles Off Ceres Surface

The orbit of Ceres is 22 miles from the surface of Ceres with NASA capturing the carbonate deposit on the southwest part. The salt deposits gave a huge clue about the current activity while the data and images will help scientists to find answers to how they got there.

Cerealia Facula is the biggest deposit in the middle with Dawn managing to take some of the closest ever photos after it adjusted the orbit trajectory.

The results of the high-resolution images have been better than hoped for as they show the rich details of the planet offering scientists along with others a glimpse of the beauty of Ceres. The low orbit meant that many more details could be seen on the planet, including the bright spots.

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Astronomers detect very bright radio emission

Image Credit: CC BY 4.0 ESO / S. Brunier
Quasars are fascinating astronomical phenomena.

Originating deep in the universe, the radio blast is from a quasar – the luminous active nucleus of a distant galaxy.

Scientists believe that this intense burst of energy came from a quasar situated 13 billion light years away – meaning that the emission originated at a time when the universe was much younger.

By analysing the burst, it will be possible to learn more about the history of the cosmos.

“We are seeing P352-15 as it was when the universe was less than a billion years old, or only about 7 percent of its current age,” said Chris Carilli of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO).

“This is near the end of a period when the first stars and galaxies were re-ionizing the neutral hydrogen atoms that pervaded intergalactic space.”

“Further observations may allow us to use this quasar as a background ‘lamp’ to measure the amount of neutral hydrogen remaining at that time.”

Source: Independent

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