Explanation: Higher than the highest mountain lies the realm of the aurora. Auroras rarely reach below 60 kilometers, and can range up to 1000 kilometers. Aurora light results from energetic electrons and protons striking atoms and molecules in the Earth's atmosphere.
Explanation: Why do some places on Earth have higher gravity than others? Sometimes the reason is unknown. To help better understand the Earth's surface, sensitive measurements by the orbiting satellites GRACE and CHAMP were used to create a map of Earth's gravitational field.
Explanation: Have you ever seen an entire rainbow? From the ground, typically, only the top portion of a rainbow is visible because directions toward the ground have fewer raindrops. From the air, though, the entire 360 degree circle of a rainbow is more commonly visible.
Explanation: Today humanity will make its first attempt to land a probe on the nucleus of a comet. As the day progresses, the Philae (fee-LAY) lander will separate from the Rosetta spacecraft and head down to the surface of Comet 67P/ChuryumovGerasimenko.
Explanation: What connects the Sun to the Moon? Many answers have been given throughout history, but in the case of today's featured image, it appears to be the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy.
Explanation: As the Moon rose and the Sun set on October 8, a lunar eclipse was in progress seen from Chongqing, China. Trailing through this composite time exposure, the rising Moon began as a dark reddened disk in total eclipse near the eastern horizon.
Explanation: The first to orbit Mercury, the MESSENGER spacecraft came to rest on this region of Mercury's surface yesterday. Constructed from MESSENGER image and laser altimeter data, the scene looks north over the northeastern rim of the broad, lava filled Shakespeare basin.
Explanation: Thunderstorms almost spoiled this view of the spectacular 2011 June 15 total lunar eclipse. Instead, storm clouds parted for 10 minutes during the total eclipse phase and lightning bolts contributed to the dramatic sky.
Explanation: It has been one of the better skies of this long night. In parts of Antarctica, not only is it winter, but the Sun can spend weeks below the horizon. At China's Zhongshan Station, people sometimes venture out into the cold to photograph a spectacular night sky.
WASHINGTON — Senators Tom Cotton and Ben Sasse have already been to Iowa this year, Gov.
Explanation: The scene might have been considered serene if it weren't for the tornado. During 2004 in Kansas, storm chaser Eric Nguyen photographed this budding twister in a different light -- the light of a rainbow. Featured here, a white tornado cloud descends from a dark storm cloud.
The political organization of Virginia Gov.
Explanation: Comet McNaught was perhaps the most photogenic comet of modern times -- from Earth. After making quite a show in the northern hemisphere in early January of 2007, the comet moved south and developed a long and unusual dust tail that dazzled southern hemisphere observers.
Explanation: Why would Mars appear to move backwards? Most of the time, the apparent motion of Mars in Earth's sky is in one direction, slow but steady in front of the far distant stars. About every two years, however, the Earth passes Mars as they orbit around the Sun.
Something massive and important has happened in the United States over the past 50 years: Economic wealth has become increasingly concentrated among a small group of ultra-wealthy Americans.
Daniel Straub remembers the night he got hooked on basic income. He had invited Götz Werner, a billionaire owner of a German drugstore chain, to give an independent talk in Zurich, where Straub was working as a project manager for a think tank.
On June 3, 1980, at about two-thirty in the morning, computers at the National Military Command Center, beneath the Pentagon, at the headquarters of the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD), deep within Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado, and at Site R, the Pentagon’s alternate command post center
For a planet that has absolutely no chance of harboring life, Jupiter gets a lot of love from Earth. Five NASA spacecraft have flown by or orbited it before and another orbiter, Juno, is set to arrive soon—on July 4, in fact.
WikiLeaks’ dump of messages to and from Clinton’s campaign chief offer an unprecedented view into the workings of the elite, and how it looks after itself The emails currently roiling the US presidential campaign are part of some unknown digital collection amassed by the troublesome Ant
America has always been aspirational to me. Even when I chafed at its hypocrisies, it somehow always seemed sure, a nation that knew what it was doing, refreshingly free of that anything-can-happen existential uncertainty so familiar to developing nations. But no longer.
This new flagship federal .gov website is "open by design, open by default." That's a huge win for the American people. As the first website to be demonstrated by a sitting President of the United States, Healthcare.gov already occupies an unusual place in history.
WASHINGTON — Yascha Mounk is used to being the most pessimistic person in the room. Mr. Mounk, a lecturer in government at Harvard, has spent the past few years challenging one of the bedrock assumptions of Western politics: that once a country becomes a liberal democracy, it will stay that way.
Explanation: What's happening to the rings of Saturn? Nothing much, just a little moon making waves. The moon is 8-kilometer Daphnis and it is making waves in the Keeler Gap of Saturn's rings using just its gravity -- as it bobs up and down, in and out.
We're all on the cusp of something big. For the first time in history, a spacecraft will be able to see the possible cliffs and crags of Pluto up close, revealing a new world to humans who have been waiting patiently for more than nine years back on Earth.
To see additional images from NASA Ames, click the icon on the image at the top of this page. NASA Ames is filled with the exotic technologies of a future that didn’t quite come to pass. Ancient computers still operate equipment in the machine shop.
For 80 years, scientists have puzzled over the way galaxies and other cosmic structures appear to gravitate toward something they cannot see. This hypothetical “dark matter” seems to outweigh all visible matter by a startling ratio of five to one, suggesting that we barely know our own universe.
Explanation: This storm cloud on Jupiter is almost as large as the Earth. Known as a white oval, the swirling cloud is a high pressure system equivalent to an Earthly anticyclone. The cloud is one of a "string of pearls" ovals south of Jupiter's famous Great Red Spot.
This article was originally published at The Conversation and has been republished under Creative Commons. Numbers do not exist in all cultures. There are numberless hunter-gatherers embedded deep in Amazonia, living along branches of the world’s largest river tree.
Recently, I came across a book at home that I hadn't thought about in a long time. It's called "Russia: Faces of a Torn Country." The title may not be particularly original, but it is certainly apt. The book covers Russia as it was a quarter-century ago: a kind of madhouse.
The sleek, speedy cheetah is rapidly heading towards extinction according to a new study into declining numbers. The report estimates that there are just 7,100 of the world's fastest mammals now left in the wild.
Last Thursday, President-elect Donald Trump issued a few statements (guess where) about America's military, with this statement as a kicker: "The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its sense regarding nukes.
I started thinking Donald Trump might win the presidency in September of 2016. By the end of October, I was almost sure. Thus, when the election night upset happened, I was dismayed, but not particularly surprised.
Neil Woods used to risk his life to catch drug dealers. But as gangs responded with escalating violence and intimidation – some even poisoning users who talked to the police – he started to see legalisation as the only solution
Republicans may have a lock on Congress and the nation’s statehouses—and could well win the presidency—but the liberal era ushered in by Barack Obama is only just beginning. Over roughly the past 18 months, the following events have transfixed the nation.
Donald J. Trump had barely met Rowanne Brewer Lane when he asked her to change out of her clothes. Donald was having a pool party at Mar-a-Lago. There were about 50 models and 30 men. There were girls in the pools, splashing around. For some reason Donald seemed a little smitten with me.
Is American democracy in decline? Should we be worried? On October 6, some of America’s top political scientists gathered at Yale University to answer these questions. And nearly everyone agreed: American democracy is eroding on multiple fronts — socially, culturally, and economically.
This is not a profile of Hillary Clinton. It is not a review of her career or an assessment of her campaign. You won’t find any shocking revelations on her emails, on Benghazi, on Whitewater, or even on her health care plan.
Two years ago, journalist Anand Giridharadas took the stage at the TED Conference and told the attendant techno-solutionists that they were, in fact, part of the problem. Literally, that’s what he said. Here, I’ll quote him directly:
According to the New America Foundation, jihadists killed 94 people inside the United States between 2005 and 2015. During that same time period, 301,797 people in the US were shot dead, Politifact reports.