Heavens

FRANKFURT. Can life be brought to celestial bodies outside our solar system which are not permanently inhabitable? This is the question with which Professor Dr. Claudius Gros from the Institute of Theoretical Physics at Goethe University Frankfurt is dealing in an essay which will shortly appear in the scientific journal Astrophysics and Space Science.

Fascinating new light could be shed on the complex atmospheres of planets which orbit stars outside our own solar system, thanks to pioneering new research.

A team of international researchers, led by astrophysicists from the University of Exeter, Columbia University and NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, used state-of -the-art modelling techniques to extensively study the atmosphere of a 'hot Jupiter' found 150 lightyears from Earth.

In order for Hermine or any other tropical depression, to intensify there must be a pathway for heat energy from the ocean surface to enter the atmosphere. For Hermine, the conduit may have been one of the two "hot towers" that the Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core satellite observed on Aug. 31 at 4:09 p.m. EDT (2009 UTC).

This disruption to the wind pattern - called the "quasi-biennial oscillation" - did not have any immediate impact on weather or climate as we experience it on Earth's surface. But it does raise interesting questions for the NASA scientists who observed it: If a pattern holds for six decades and then suddenly changes, what caused that to happen? Will it happen again? What effects might it have?

NASA's Terra satellites provided a visible view of Typhoon Namtheun when it was moving through Japan's Ryukyu Islands. Namtheun is expected to make landfall in Japan's large island of Kyushu on Sept. 3.

Great Tits (Parus major) are synanthropes who have followed humans into large cities. A team led by Philipp Sprau at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Ornithology in Seewiesen has investigated the adaptive mechanisms needed by the birds for urban life. Their study has shown that while Great Tits begin to breed earlier in cities, their clutches are smaller and nestlings weigh less than their rural counterparts upon leaving the nest.

Differences between cities and rural environments

Although Tropical Storm Madeline weakened to a depression, infrared satellite imagery showed a small burst of strength in the storm as strong thunderstorms developed near the center of the storm.

Early in the morning of Sept. 1, 2016, NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, caught both Earth and the moon crossing in front of the sun. SDO keeps a constant eye on the sun, but during SDO's semiannual eclipse seasons, Earth briefly blocks SDO's line of sight each day - a consequence of SDO's geosynchronous orbit. On Sept. 1, Earth completely eclipsed the sun from SDO's perspective just as the moon began its journey across the face of the sun. The end of the Earth eclipse happened just in time for SDO to catch the final stages of the lunar transit.

A new study of science PhDs who embarked on careers between 2004 and 2014 showed that while nearly two-thirds chose employment outside academic science, their reasons for doing so had little to do with the advice they received from faculty advisors, other scientific mentors, family, or even graduate school peers. The 3,669 PhDs, including 225 from underrepresented minority (URM) backgrounds, said that they made the decision to stay or leave academia primarily on their own.

NASA's Terra satellite passed over Hurricane Gaston and provided a visible look at powerful Hurricane Gaston as it headed toward the Azores Islands in the Eastern Atlantic Ocean. The satellite provided an image that showed Gaston still maintained its eye.