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Pluto

  1. Entertainment

    Pluto Confronts Neil deGrasse Tyson Face-To-Face, Still Not A Planet [VIDEO]

    It's no secret that we at Geekosystem love Neil deGrasse Tyson - and the epic premiere of Cosmos last week didn't exactly help with our obsession. Tyson hit up Late Night on Friday and was confronted by his oldest frenemy: a dejected and de-planetified Pluto. Watch how the big fight goes down, and prepare to love NDT just a little bit more.

    Read on...
  2. Space

    If We Had a Really Big Telescope, Could We See Star Wars?

    Everyone likes watching Star Wars. They're awesome movies, and I think we've all had that majorly trippy moment when we realize "A long time ago" means that everything we're watching happened in the past. But if it was so long ago, and so far away, that the light is reaching us now-- does that mean we could theoretically watch Star Wars live?

    Read on...
  3. Space

    Watch Live as SETI Institute Announces Official Names of Pluto’s Smallest Known Moons

    Today at 12:00 PM EDT you can jump on a Google Hangout with SETI to hear the official naming of Pluto's two smallest known moons. SETI held a vote a few months ago, and the winning names were "Vulcan" and "Cerberus." Cerberus is already the name of an asteroid, so to avoid any confusion they're expected to use the alternate Greek spelling "Kerberos." We've got the live video right here.

    Read on...
  4. Space

    The Nerds Win! Plutonian Moons Have Been Named

    First the SETI Institute put it up for vote, then the geeks and nerds swarmed the Internet, and now it's as certain as it can be before the International Astronomical Union (IAU) makes the final call: The names of last two moons of Pluto have been chosen, courtesy of 450,324 votes and William Shatner. And the Plutonian award goes to....

    Read on...
  5. Space

    William Shatner Leads the Charge to Name Pluto’s Moons

    We should have known! When SETI announced that the public could vote to name the fourth and fifth moons of Pluto, they also allowed voters to suggest their own. Given the demographic of astronomy and sci-fi fans, this new twist in the space-time continuum should have been inevitable: William Shatner rallied Star Trek fans to vote for the added name of Vulcan -- and now it's winning! Read on to learn about the other contenders.

    Read on...
  6. Space

    This Day In Geek History: Pluto Was Discovered Today in 1930

    We little humans on our floating rock discover celestial bodies long after the they were born -- we kind of can't help it -- but when we do, the date is a big deal to us. On this day in 1930, astronomer Clyde Tombaugh examined some photographs he'd taken and discovered our very own Pluto.

    Read on...
  7. Space

    It’s Still Not a Planet, But You Can Name Pluto’s Moons!

    Our old friend Pluto may still be sore about its demotion from a planet to an ice dwarf, but the good news is that we can name its moons. Two of them, anyway. Today, the SETI Institute has opened up the official naming to the public. Keep reading to learn what names are out to an early lead and how you can put your two cents in.

    Read on...
  8. Space

    Pluto Strikes Back: Moons, Possible Rings of Former Planet Could Damage NASA Probe

    It's been more than six years since Pluto was demoted from its once vaunted status as the ninth planet in our solar system to one of more than 40 dwarf planets. While it is, yes, scientifically accurate, the decision has never set well with plenty of folks, yours truly included. The former ninth planet didn't have a chance to defend itself from NASA's slings and arrows during the review process, but it might get a chance at a little vengeance in a couple of years, watching its moons -- and even the rings it might have -- bang around NASA's New Horizons Probe on its way out of the solar system.

    Read on...
  9. Space

    Pluto’s Fifth Moon Discovered by Hubble Telescope

    That's right, folks! Everyone's favorite trans-Neptunian object has a new moon! I'm not talking about the Stephenie Meyer book, here; I'm talking about a newly-discovered moon known as P5 orbiting that icy far away ex-planet. Chalk another one up to the Hubble Space Telescope for the discovery of Pluto's fifth moon.

    Read on...
  10. Space

    Pluto Could Be Hiding a Life-Supporting Ocean at Its Core

    While everyone is still excited about the potential habitablity of Super-Earth HD 85512 b, it's worth noting that there still might be some potential for life in our own backyard. An article in New Scientist suggests that everyone's favorite dwarf planet, Pluto, may be hiding some liquid water oceans under its icy coating. How could Pluto possibly have liquid oceans so far away from the sun? Well, it may be packing some heat in its core. Guillaume Robuchon and Francis Nimmo from University of California, Santa Cruz suggest that Pluto very well may have liquid oceans if its core contains enough potassium and if its ice is appropriately sloshy.

    Read on...
  11. Space

    More Dwarf Planets Found In Kuiper Belt, Pluto In Good Company But Still Not A Planet

    The Kuiper Belt, an area in space beyond Neptune, characterized by asteroids, ice and rock is also home to several dwarf planets. Haumea, Makemake, and our dearly demoted Pluto all reside in the Kuiper Belt. Outside the Kuiper Belt, there are only two other known dwarf planets Ceres and Eris. Now, researchers believe they have found three more dwarf planets in the Kuiper Belt. Using the Warsaw Telescope at Chile's Las Campanas Observatory, researchers found 14 possible objects in space that could be interesting for further study. Of those objects, 11 turned out to just be oversized chunks of debris, but three of them are big enough to meet the definition of a dwarf planet.

    Read on...
  12. Science

    Neil deGrasse Tyson Thinks The Onion Deserves A Pulitzer [Video]

    Famous astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson has come out with a video in support of The Onion news network. Tyson is particularly proud of the way The Onion handled that whole Pluto debacle, and feels the publication deserves the highest honor in journalism, the Pulitzer Prize. Of course, Tyson's video is as much a parody as The Onion itself.

    (via Neil deGrasse Tyson)

    Read on...
  13. Space

    Your Eyes Could Find a Destination for NASA Probe

    NASA's New Horizon's probe is currently hurtling toward Pluto at incredible speeds, but what happens after it gets there is still an open topic. After completing the first flyby of distant not-quite-a-planet Pluto, New Horizons will have enough fuel left over to take a stroll through the Kuiper Belt. NASA mission planners are considering making a visit to one, maybe two, of the objects in this distant field of rocky debris. To help provide data for mission planners, citizen-science instigator Zooniverse wants to bring you (yes, you!) into the search for possible targets. The project is called Icehunters, and it invites users to help ferret out icy objects that would be worth a look. Like other citizen science projects from Zooniverse, the idea is that humans are simply better and more efficient at identifying objects in messy data.

    Read on...
  14. Space

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson on the Daily Show Tonight

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson is the director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History, and one of the Daily Show's favorite people (judging by the number of times he has been interviewed on the show). He's also one of our most favorite science geeks.

    He will be appearing on the show again tonight, most likely to talk about this week's premiere of his NOVA documentary The Pluto Files, chronicling the declassification of Pluto as a planet.

    His interviews always remind us to be excited about science. But don't take our word for it. We've embedded his last Daily Show interview after the jump.

    Read on...
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