I found this amazing BBC trailer while looking up something I found while researching arsenic.
That’s just breathtaking!
But if you’ve ever seen the periodic table, you know that there are heavier elements than iron. Arsenic is one of them.
Our Sun is too small to produce any element heavier than oxygen. The larger stars, like Betelgeuse (mentioned in the video and shown by an arrow in the image at the top of this post), are the ones that manufacture elements up to iron.
Beyond that, to make platinum and gold, for example, it takes a supernova.
Please don’t mention this to the BBC–who knows what they would blow up to illustrate that!
Such conditions are too extreme to model in a lab, which is why astronomers got very excited when they found arsenic and selenium in an old star just beyond the edge of the Milky Way galaxy. The data gives them more to work with.
Featured image: Akira Fujii via Wikimedia, public domain.
I think this situation with Oppy waiting out a storm has somehow made Mars very real for a lot of people who don’t usually read science news. And that’s a good thing.
Typical. TYPICAL. I go away for a week – up to the beautiful Isle of Skye to take in some museums, castles and white sandy beaches – and after virtually ignoring her for years and years the rest of the world suddenly goes crazy about Opportunity! No-one (ok, almost no-one) has cared about her for […]
Read the whole thing. There is some good news. The rover isn’t buried in sand; it just can’t get enough sunlight for power. However, the dust may keep the extreme Martian cold temperatures from falling so low that Oppy can’t power up again. They are taking a wait-and-see attitude. Go! Oppy! And thanks, Spirit, Oppy, and their human builders and operators for this vast trove of solid information about the once-unknown “Barsoom.” (Yeah, I was a Burroughs fan as a kid.)
Here’s the village–I don’t know why the bicyclists are driving cars, but that’s Willand in Devonshire they’re driving through:
And this is the Sentinel that has discovered Willand is rising at a rate of almost an inch a year
It’s a total mystery. This is not a tectonically active region, so things like volcanism or plate collisions are unlikely to be involved. The mining boom during the Industrial Age also passed Willand by.
According to this source, whatever is causing it is deep underground, perhaps an aquifer that is filling up.
Willand residents aren’t endangered by the movement, but it will affect major transportation corridors that are planned for the area.