Scientists from the Space Sciences Department at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science take you "behind the stories" using the best images and animation available to help understand the latest developments.
Ka Chun Yu and Dimitri Klebe are our presenters this month.
Dimitri Klebe begins with a look New Horizon’s upcoming close encounter with Pluto. He’ll cover what’s been learned about the Plutonian system since the spacecraft’s launch and what to expect when the its cameras start taking pictures.
Next, Dimitri looks at how astronomers were able to create a 3D view of the Pillars of Creation using an instrument called MUSE (Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer) on ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) at the Paranal Observatory in northern Chile.
Ka Chun begins by bringing things back to our solar system by looking at Jupiter’s moon Europa.
Results of recent NASA experiments that suggest the dark material coating the long, thin fractures covering Europa’s surface is sea salt from a subsurface ocean that has been discolored by exposure to radiation.
Ka Chun’s next two stories deal with exoplanets. First, he looks at recent exoplanet discoveries using the Automated Planet Finder Telescope at Lick Observatory in California and the W. M. Keck Observatory on Maunakea, Hawaiʻi. His second exoplanet story is about the first evidence of changing conditions on a super Earth. Astronomers have detected wildly changing temperatures on a this “diamond planet” and believe it could be due to huge amounts of volcanic activity.