Author Archives: invaderxan

About invaderxan

Molecular astrophysicist, usually found writing frenziedly, staring at the sky, or drinking mojitos.

Comic by Hannah Blumenreich. Happy Caturday!

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An item on my wish list: See a sunrise from orbit. Earth’s atmosphere scatters out the blue from sunlight. The scattered light makes the atmosphere look blue, but the sunlight has all of its blue photons scattered out from it, giving it … Continue reading

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Winter Wonderland

A few days ago, the Cassini spacecraft, 1.61 billion kilometres away in orbit around Saturn, made its closest ever pass of Saturn’s tiny moon Enceladus. It flew by around 49 km above Enceladus’ south pole – perilously close by astronomical standards. … Continue reading

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Painted leaves

Ladies and gentlemen and variations thereupon, I’d like to introduce you to Chrissy Sparks, – who creates some really quite marvellous space art, which she sells in her store on Etsy. You can also get a slightly more behind-the-scenes look … Continue reading

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This is a completely gratutous Saturn system appreciation post. Because Saturn. Images found courtesy of

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Postcards from Pluto

New Horizons passed Pluto some time ago, but it’s still slowly dripping data back to us. The tiny craft wasn’t optimised for data transfer, so its hard drives are still packed to the gills with exciting discoveries which we’ll all … Continue reading

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Words matter

This gifset has been going around Tumblr awhile now (1,408,824 notes while I’m writing this!), and I think it’s a very important message. Gender is irrelevant really. Kids all like science. I know I did, and I think the same … Continue reading

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Twilight on Pluto

It turns out, Pluto has blue skies. And water ice on its surface. Which, at a cursory glance might make it seem a little bit like home. But only a little bit. Some notable experts were a little puzzled to … Continue reading

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Snowball Moon

Enceladus is, without question, one of the most interesting locations in our solar system, and for a lot of reasons. Quite simply, this tiny Cronian moon is a mystery. We know what we see, but we have utterly no idea … Continue reading

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Meteor Chemistry

Have you ever noticed that not all meteors you see falling are the same colour? Growing up in the dark countryside away from city lights, I saw them sometimes, and their colour occasionally seemed to be an unusual and striking … Continue reading

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