Enjoying EarthSky? Subscribe.

137,313 subscribers and counting ...


Hear the birth of an iceberg

Distinctive underwater sounds announce the birth of an iceberg, say researchers. In a recent study, scientists used underwater microphones aboard buoys to record a variety of iceberg births at the Hans Glacier in Svalbard, Norway during three days in August 2013. These recordings were combined with time-lapse photos of the glacier during the same time period.

Asteroid that flew past Earth on Monday has a moon!

Wow! Scientists working with NASA’s Deep Space Network antenna at Goldstone, California have released the first radar images of asteroid 2004 BL86, which flew closer to Earth on Monday than any asteroid this large will again until the year 2027. The radar images show that the asteroid has its own small moon!

Video: The scientific power of meditation

What does meditation do to your brain and body? Here’s a new AsapSCIENCE video on the power of meditation, according to science.

Video: How the smell of rain happens

You know that certain smell in the air after a light rain? Scientists at MIT believe they may have identified the mechanism that releases this aroma, as well as other aerosols, into the environment.

When a raindrop hits a surface, tiny air bubbles burst from the drop in a fizz of aerosols. Watch the high-speed video.

Video: Fly through the largest picture ever taken

Did you see the largest picture ever taken, released on January 5? The picture has a staggering 1.5 billion pixels, so you’d need 600 HD television screens to display it. It shows the neighboring Andromeda galaxy, closest spiral galaxy to our Milky Way. Now daveachuk on YouTube has created this wonderful fly-through video, showing detail in the gigantic Andromeda pic. Enjoy feeling small! And remember … each one of those white dots? Each one is a sun, much like the sun that powers all life on Earth.

Video: Superstar Eta Carinae

Eta Carinae consists of two massive stars, one with an estimated 30 times our sun’s mass and the other star with 90 times our sun’s mass, outshining our sun by some 5 million times. The second star is the most luminous and massive star within 10,000 light-years of Earth. The very eccentric mutual orbit of the two massive stars of Eta Carinae bring them close every 5.5 years. The last time this happened was in August, 2014, when NASA astronomers turned their instruments on this system to study it in detail. This video is the result of that detailed study. Fascinating!

Found! Mars orbiter locates lost 2003 Beagle lander

Images taken by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter have revealed the missing Beagle 2 Mars Lander, built by the United Kingdom, and lost on Mars since 2003.

Video: Human population by the billions

Earth human population has now exceeded 7 billion. How long did it take for the world to add each billion? What improvements in health and science helped population growth? And how long do demographers think it will take to reach 8 billion, and 9 billion? This video from the Population Reference Bureau, best source we know for population data and insights, helps you visualize the answers.

With one minute remaining, SpaceX aborts today’s launch of Falcon 9

At the last moment, SpaceX aborted its launch this morning (January 6, 2015) of a resupply mission to the International Space Station. SpaceX’s unmanned Falcon rocket was supposed to blast off before sunrise Tuesday – providing a spectacular sky view for spectators along Florida’s space coast – but flight controllers stopped the countdown with just over one minute remaining. The issue reported is a thrust vector control actuator on the rocket’s second stage. The soonest SpaceX can try again is Friday, January 9, and a launch is planned for that time at 5:09 a.m. EST (1009 UTC), pending resolution of the issue.

New video shows life in the deepest ocean

The deepest part of the ocean is in the Mariana Trench (sometimes called the Marianas Trench), located in the western Pacific Ocean. At its deepest part, it’s just under 7 miles (6.831 miles / 10.994 km / 10,994 meters) deep. Using the UK’s deepest diving vehicle – the Hadal-Lander – an international team of marine biologists, geologists, microbiologists and geneticists recently probed this area, captured video of the world’s deepest ocean life, discovered some new species and set a new record for the world’s deepest known fish.