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Astronomers detect 70 to 170 free floating exoplanets

The uncertainty of science: Astronomers today announced that they think they have detected from 70 to 170 exoplanets in a nearby star-forming region that are apparently free-floating, unattached to any star or solar system.

The astronomers also combined the vast number of images available in public astronomical archives with the new deep wide-field observations obtained with the best infrared and optical telescopes on the ground and in space. Using over 80,000 wide-field images adding up to around 100 terabytes and spanning 20 years, they identified at least 70, and up to as many as 170 of these Jupiter-sized planets, as members of the Upper Scorpius association among the background stars and galaxies.

If confirmed, this discovery more than doubles the number of free-floating planets known.

The discovery was made by first using the motion of the stars to pinpoint which ones belonged to the Upper Scorpius star-forming region. The astronomers then compared this data with past archival telescopic images.

Though intriguing, a great deal of skepticism of this discovery is required. The press release is very vague about some points. For example, no explanation is given on how they measured the mass of these objects to determine they were Jupiter-sized.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!

 

From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

 
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.

 

“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.

 

All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

 

Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.

Readers: the rules for commenting!

 

No registration is required. I welcome all opinions, even those that strongly criticize my commentary.

 

However, name-calling and obscenities will not be tolerated. First time offenders who are new to the site will be warned. Second time offenders or first time offenders who have been here awhile will be suspended for a week. After that, I will ban you. Period.

 

Note also that first time commenters as well as any comment with more than one link will be placed in moderation for my approval. Be patient, I will get to it.

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