News From the World of Astronomy

Recently I’ve run across some interesting facts (at least to me) that put the scale of our world in fresh perspective.

Astronomers Have Found The Most Distant Solar Object (Yet)

We’ve found a new object in the Solar System. It’s small, lies more than 100 times our distance from the sun, and takes 1000 years to make one orbit. It’s official name is 2018 VG18, but has been nicknamed (of course) Farout.

This news is important because astronomers suspect there is still another planet out there to be discovered, and these far-out objects provide clues as to where to look. And stay tuned; there are probably more objects like this out there.

For the complete story, read “Astronomers Spy Most Distant Solar Object Yet” by Deborah Byrd at The picture at left, taken from that site, is “Discovery images of 2018 VG18 aka Farout, from the Subaru Telescope on November 10, 2018.  Farout moves between the two discovery images while the background stars and galaxies do not move over the one hour between images.  Image via Scott S. Sheppard/David Tholen/Carnegie Institution for Science.”


Goodbye to Saturn’s Rings

Have you ever seen Saturn’s rings? Turns out they won’t be there indefinitely. Scientists have discovered a phenomenon called “ring rain,” which means ice particles from the rings are being pulled by gravity onto Saturn.  So eventually Saturn will lose its gorgeous rings.  But don’t worry, the process is going to take millions of years.  For more, see “Goodbye to Saturn’s Rings” by Eleanor Imster at .

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