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Cosmic Journeys - Mars: Earth that Never Was

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Cosmic Journeys - Mars: Earth that Never Was

Did Mars long ago develop far enough for life to arise? If so, does anything still live within Mars' dusty plains, beneath its ice caps, or somewhere underground?

In 1964 the Mariner Four spacecraft flew by Mars and got a good look. What it saw looked more like the Moon than the Earth. Then, in the mid-1970's, two lander-orbiter robot teams, named Viking, went in for an even closer look. The landers tested the soil for the chemical residues of life. All the evidence from Viking told us: Mars is dead. And extremely harsh.

The mission recorded Martian surface temperatures from -17 degrees Celsius down to -107. We now know it can get even colder than that at the poles. The atmosphere is 95% carbon dioxide, with only traces of oxygen. And it's extremely thin, with less than one percent the surface pressure of Earth's atmosphere.

And it's bone dry. In fact, the Sahara Desert is a rainforest compared to Mars, where water vapor is a trace gas in the atmosphere. On Earth, impact craters erode over time from wind and water... and even volcanic activity. On Mars, they can linger for billions of years.

Earth's surface is shaped and reshaped by the horizontal movement of plates that make up its crust driven by heat welling up from the planet's hot interior. At half the width and only 11% the mass of Earth, Mars doesn't generate enough heat to support wide-scale plate tectonics.

Nor does it have the gravity to hold a thick atmosphere needed to store enough heat at the surface to allow liquid water to flow. Nonetheless, some areas that looked to Viking-era scientists like craters and volcanic areas, were later shown to be riverbeds, lake bottoms, and ocean shorelines.

If water once flowed on Mars' surface, where did it all go?

This was the scene at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab in 2004. The twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity had just bounced down on the Red Planet. When the excitement died down, the rovers were set off on one of the most remarkable journeys in the history of planetary exploration. Missions like this could one day pave the way for a day when we'll view images from a real astronaut's camera.

Opportunity had come to rest in a small crater near the equator, at a spot called Meridiani Planum. Here, in plain view, on a nearby crater wall, its camera revealed exposed bedrock, the first ever seen on Mars. Not far away, the rover found layered rocks on the face of a cliff. On Earth, they typically form as sedimentary layers at the bottom of oceans.

And at every turn, Opportunity rolled across tiny, smooth, round pellets. They became known as blueberries because they appeared purplish-brown against Mars' rust-colored surface. Initially thought to be volcanic in origin, they turned out to be iron-rich spherules of the type that form within cavities in the mud at the bottom of an ocean.

Drilling into rocks, the rover inserted a spectrometer to read the mineral content. The readings showed significant amounts of sulfate salt, a tracer for standing water. That wasn't all. Spirit's broken wheel, dragging behind it, exposed soils saturated in salt.

Clearly there once was water on Mars' surface, but how long ago? And, if there is anything left, where would you find it? One possible answer: the North Pole. From orbit, this region seemed to be covered in frozen CO2 - what we call dry ice. But was there water ice below the surface?

Enter Phoenix, a lander that touched down near the North Pole in early 2008. Radar readings from orbit, taken by the Mars Express mission, hinted at the presence of ice just below the surface.

The Phoenix lander's descent thrusters blew away the top layer of soil, allowing its camera to snap pictures of what looked like ice. Scientists instructed the robot to conduct a simple experiment: reach out and dig a trench, then watch what happens.

As expected, clumps of white stuff appeared. A couple of days later, it was gone. Vaporized. That means it can't be salt or frozen CO2, which is stable in the cold dry temperatures of the Martian pole. So it had to be water, the first ever directly seen on Mars.

There are indications that the North Pole was actually warm enough in the recent past for water ice to become liquid. The Mars Reconaissance Orbiter, or MRO, used radar pulses to peer beneath the surface of the ice cap. These data reveal that the ice, just over a mile thick, formed in a succession of layers as the climate alternated between warm and cold.

Our planet avoids mood swings like this in part because its spin is stabilized by a massive moon. Mars' spin is not, so it can really wobble, with the pole tilting toward the sun for long periods. New observations by the MRO spacecraft show that these wobbles can lead to dramatic releases of CO2, and warming periods due to an increase in the greenhouse effect.
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Cosmic Journeys - Mars: Earth that Never Was

Did Mars long ago develop far enough for life to arise? If so, does anything still live within Mars' dusty plains, beneath its ice caps, or somewhere underground?Thanks for watching Please.

Did Mars long ago develop far enough for life to arise? If so, does anything still live within Mars' dusty plains, beneath its ice caps, or somewhere underground? In 1964 the Mariner Four.

Did Mars long ago develop far enough for life to arise? If so, does anything still live within Mars' dusty plains, beneath its ice caps, or somewhere underground?
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Cosmic Journeys - Mars- Earth

Cosmic Journeys - Mars- Earth that Never Was
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Building the Engine That Will Take Us to Mars

Franklin Chang Díaz is a pioneer. As a child, he dreamed of going into space. As an adult, he made his wish come true. Diaz was the first naturalized U.S. citizen from Latin America to become an astronaut. After making seven trips into space, the MIT-educated Díaz retired from NASA and set his sights on speeding up the journey to Mars. A trip using chemical-powered rockets takes nine months—Díaz has developed a plasma-propelled engine that he says will cut the journey down to just over one month. We visit Ad Astra Rocket Company in Webster, Texas, to see the project Díaz has been working on for 40 years.

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A Journey To Mars - Space Documentary

NASA is developing the capabilities needed to send humans to an asteroid by 2025 and Mars in the 2030s – goals outlined in the bipartisan NASA Authorization Act of 2010 and in the U.S. National Space Policy, also issued in 2010. Mars is a rich destination for scientific discovery and robotic and human exploration as we expand our presence into the solar system. Its formation and evolution are comparable to Earth, helping us learn more about our own planet’s history and future. Mars had conditions suitable for life in its past. Future exploration could uncover evidence of life, answering one of the fundamental mysteries of the cosmos: Does life exist beyond Earth?

Credit: NASA

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A brief history of Mars exploration

Buried glaciers have been spotted on Mars, offering new hints about how much water may be accessible on the Red Planet and where it is located, researchers said.VIDEOGRAPHIC

Was Mars Once Like Earth?

News from NASA on the upcoming Mars mission, MAVEN. While Mars Rover Curiosity is studying the Red Planet from the ground, the Maven satellite will give us important data taken from the upper atmosphere. Was Mars ever full of water, and as lush as the forests of Earth? By studying various atomic and molecular processes, Maven will help to decipher the mysterious history of Mars.

Mars in Stunning HD

One of the most amazing photographic collections ever, from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, HiRISE camera. NASA/JPL/University of Arizona.

A Walk on Venus (CGI from BBC TV series Space Odyssey)

From BBC TV series Space Odyssey: Voyage To The Planets
Music : 1.I Robot Soundtrack - 25 End Credits.
2. Alien 3 Score End Credits
Venus is the second planet from the Sun, orbiting it every 224.7 Earth days.The CO2-rich atmosphere, along with thick clouds of sulfur dioxide, generates the strongest greenhouse effect in the Solar System, creating surface temperatures of over 460 °C (860 °F).Venus has an extremely dense atmosphere , the atmospheric mass is 93 times that of Earth's atmosphere while the pressure at the planet's surface is about a pressure equivalent to that at a depth of nearly 1 kilometer under Earth's oceans.

Birth of the Moon

Scientists have been reconstructing the history of the moon by scouring its surface, mapping its mountains and craters, and probing its interior. What are they learning about our own planet's beginnings?

Decades ago, we sent astronauts to the moon as a symbol of confidence in the face of the great cold war struggle. Landing on the moon was a giant leap for mankind. But it's what the astronauts picked up from the lunar surface that may turn out to be Apollo's greatest legacy.

When the astronauts of Apollo stepped out of their landing craft, they entered a world draped in fine sticky dust, strewn with rocks, and pocked with craters. They walked and rambled about, picking up rocks that they packed for the return flight.

Back in earth-bound labs, scientists went to work probing the rocks for clues to one of the most vexing questions in all of science. Where did the moon come from? The answer promised to shed light on an even grander question. Where did Earth come from? And how did it evolve into the planet we know today?

The nature of the moon began to come into focus four centuries ago. Galileo Galilei had heard of an instrument built by Dutch opticians capable of seeing faraway things as though nearby. Galileo, in many ways the first modern scientist, saw this new instrument as a tool to help settle a long standing question.

What was the nature of the heavens, and how did the world of men fit within it?

To some philosophers, the moon was a perfect, crystalline sphere of divine substance, free of Earth's imperfections. Galileo, with his telescope, saw a more familiar reality. He noted mountains and valleys on the moon, features like those of Earth.

The astronauts of Apollo lifted off on a series of missions to get a close up look at the moon and perhaps settle the debate. Because there's no atmosphere there, the astronauts entered landscapes that are nearly frozen in time. They could scour the lunar surface for evidence of events going back almost to the time of its birth.

Indeed, eons of impacts had opened up the Moon's interior, leaving a wealth of information strewn about their landing sites. Scientists had already noticed that some large old craters were surrounded by concentric rings. You can see one of the most pronounced examples in this image of the Mare Orientale, captured recently by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, or LRO. The colors show differences in elevation.

The old view was that the impact had melted the rock below. A newer view held that the impactor had actually splashed down on a molten surface. That gave rise to the radical notion that, early in its history, the moon's surface was covered in a vast ocean of magma.

When the astronauts arrived, they found relatively light rocks known as anorthosites. Their presence suggested that heavier material had sunk toward the moon's interior, forcing lighter material to the surface.

The rocks they brought back were found to be strikingly similar to those on Earth, in part because they share forms of oxygen, called isotopes, that scientists regard as blood types for solar system bodies. Then there was this. The moon appeared to be completely, utterly, dry, with no evidence that water was ever present on its surface.
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Cosmic Journeys - Earth in 1000 Years

This edition of COSMIC JOURNEYS explores the still unfolding story of Earth's past and the light it sheds on the science of climate change today. While that story can tell us about the mechanisms that can shape our climate. it's still the unique conditions of our time that will determine sea levels, ice coverage, and temperatures.

Ice, in its varied forms, covers as much as 16% of Earth's surface, including 33% of land areas at the height of the northern winter. Glaciers, sea ice, permafrost, ice sheets and snow play an important role in Earth's climate. They reflect energy back to space, shape ocean currents, and spawn weather patterns.

But there are signs that Earth's great stores of ice are beginning to melt. To find out where Earth might be headed, scientists are drilling down into the ice, and scouring ancient sea beds, for evidence of past climate change. What are they learning about the fate of our planet... a thousand years into the future and even beyond?

30,000 years ago, Earth began a relentless descent into winter. Glaciers pushed into what were temperate zones. Ice spread beyond polar seas. New layers of ice accumulated on the vast frozen plateau of Greenland. At three kilometers thick, Greenland's ice sheet is a monumental formation built over successive ice ages and millions of years. It's so heavy that it has pushed much of the island down below sea level. And yet, today, scientists have begun to wonder how resilient this ice sheet really is.

Average global temperatures have risen about one degree Celsius since the industrial revolution. They could go up another degree by the end of this century. If Greenland's ice sheet were to melt, sea levels would rise by over seven meters. That would destroy or threaten the homes and livelihoods of up to a quarter of the world's population.

With so much at stake, scientists are monitoring Earth's frozen zones... with satellites, radar flights, and expeditions to drill deep into ice sheets. And they are reconstructing past climates, looking for clues to where Earth might now be headed... not just centuries, but thousands of years in the future.

Periods of melting and freezing, it turns out, are central events in our planet's history.
That's been born out by evidence ranging from geological traces of past sea levels... the distribution of fossils... chemical traces that correspond to ocean temperatures, and more.

Going back over two billion years, earth has experienced five major glacial or ice ages. The first, called the Huronian, has been linked to the rise of photosynthesis in primitive organisms. They began to take in carbon dioxide, an important greenhouse gas. That decreased the amount of solar energy trapped by the atmosphere, sending Earth into a deep freeze.

The second major ice age began 580 million years ago. It was so severe, it's often referred to as snowball earth. The Andean-Saharan and the Karoo ice ages began 460 and 360 million years ago. Finally, there's the Quaternary... from 2.6 million years ago to the present. Periods of cooling and warming have been spurred by a range of interlocking factors: the movement of continents, patterns of ocean circulation, volcanic events, the evolution of plants and animals.

The world as we know it was beginning to take shape in the period from 90 to 50 million years ago. The continents were moving toward their present positions. The Americas separated from Europe and Africa. India headed toward a merger with Asia. The world was getting warmer. Temperatures spiked roughly 55 million years ago, going up about 5 degrees Celsius in just a few thousand years. CO2 levels rose to about 1000 parts per million compared to 280 in pre-industrial times, and 390 today.

But the stage was set for a major cool down. The configuration of landmasses had cut the Arctic off from the wider oceans. That allowed a layer of fresh water to settle over it, and a sea plant called Azolla to spread widely. In a year, it can soak up as much as 6 tons of CO2 per acre. Plowing into Asia, the Indian subcontinent caused the mighty Himalayan Mountains to rise up. In a process called weathering, rainfall interacting with exposed rock began to draw more CO2 from the atmosphere... washing it into the sea. Temperatures steadily dropped.

By around 33 million years ago, South America had separated from Antarctica. An ice sheet formed. In time, with temperatures and CO2 levels continuing to fall, the door was open for a more subtle climate driver. It was first described by the 19th century Serbian scientist, Milutin Milankovic.

He saw that periodic variations in Earth's rotational motion altered the amount of solar radiation striking the poles. In combination, every 100,000 years or so, these variations have sent earth into a period of cool temperatures and spreading ice.

Cosmic Journeys - The Search for Earth-like Planets

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Get the latest from the planet-hunting frontier. Find out what we are learning about our place in the cosmos from the search for earth-like planets.

This journey started tens of thousands of years ago, when humans began to fan out across the planet, following unknown pathways, crossing unmeasured distances. We traced coastlines, and sailed uncertain seas. We crossed ocean straits drained by an ice age.

Into every corner of Earth we ventured, looking for places to put down our roots, to raise our families, or just to see what was there. Today, it's the final frontier that fires our imaginations. With so many stars in our galaxy, we make a simple extrapolation, that the cosmos must be filled with worlds like ours, with life, even intelligent life.

For four years, the historic planet hunting mission, Kepler, starred at a group of 150,000 stars located in a region extending three thousand light years away from earth.

The data collected by this spacecraft has brought a turning point in the long search for other planets like earth. Is ours one of countless life-bearing worlds strewn about the galaxy; or is it a rare garden of eden in a barren universe?

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Here at SpaceRip, we value the exploration of the unknown. We surpass boundaries for the sake of uncovering the mysteries of the cosmos and what they may tell us about our origin and our future. With our videos, we hope to educate our viewers on how we fit into the universe, and more so how we can do our part to better it.

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Cosmic Journeys - Supervolcanoes

They are eruptions so vast, so Earth-shattering, they have changed the history of our planet. Climate collapse. Toxic turmoil. Mass extinction. Worse than a killer asteroid, or nuclear war, they are Earth's most destructive Supervolcanoes.

North America, the time was six hundred and forty thousand years ago, long before humans arrived on the continent. Amid one of nature's great mountain building projects, the Rockies, vast columns of smoke began to rise high into the atmosphere. And soon a smokey haze wrapped the globe.

A thick blanket of ashe spread over the western United States. Geologists have traced this event to a depression in the land known as a caldera, in the heart of Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. Today, we venture to Yellowstone to admire its spectacles of steam and boiling mud.

Visitors to Yellowstone may never suspect they are atop one of the world's largest active volcanoes.

The last time it blew, it sent an estimated 1000 cubic kilometers of dirt, rocks, ashe, dust, and soot into the atmosphere. But that's small compared to Earth's largest super volcanoes. Find out what made Toba, Siberian Traps, Deccan Traps and other super eruptions so powerful.

Voyager Journey to the Stars

Cosmic Journeys examines the great promise of the Voyager mission and where it will lead us in our grand ambition to move out beyond our home planet. The two Voyager spacecraft are part of an ancient quest to push beyond our boundaries... to see what lies beyond the horizon. Now tens of billions of kilometers from Earth, two spacecraft are streaking out into the void. What will we learn about the Galaxy, the Universe, and ourselves from Voyager's epic Journey to the stars?

December 19, 1972... the splashdown of the Apollo 17 crew capsule marked the end of the golden age of manned spaceflight. The Mercury.... Gemini... and Apollo programs had proven that we could send people into space... To orbit the Earth.... Fly out beyond our planet... Then land on the moon and walk among its ancient crater.

The collective will to send people beyond our planet faded in times of economic uncertainty, war, and shifting priorities. And yet, just five years after Apollo ended, scientists launched a new vision that was just as profound and even more far-reaching.

It didn't all go smoothly. Early computer problems threatened to doom Voyager 2. Then its radio receiver failed, forcing engineers to use a back up. Now, after more than three and a half decades of successful operations, the twin spacecraft are sending back information on their flight into interstellar space. Along the way, they have revealed a solar system rich beyond our imagining.

The journey was made possible by a rare alignment of the planets, a configuration that occurs only once every 176 years. That enabled the craft to go from planet to planet, accelerating as they entered the gravitational field of one, then flying out to the next. The Voyagers carried a battery of scientific equipment to collect data on the unknown worlds in their path. That included a pair of vidicom cameras, and a data transfer rate slower than a dialup modem.

ABOUT US
Here at SpaceRip, we value the exploration of the unknown. We surpass boundaries for the sake of uncovering the mysteries of the cosmos and what they may tell us about our origin and our future. With our videos, we hope to educate our viewers on how we fit into the universe, and more so how we can do our part to better it.

We have partnered with MagellanTV with the goal of providing our viewers with insight regarding our uncertain future on Earth and beyond. Equipped with knowledge, we hope to inspire people to enact change and pave the way for a better tomorrow.

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Cosmic Journeys - Life: Destiny or Chance?

Are the universe and its physical laws so fine-tuned that the rise of life is inevitable? Or is life a fluke, a lucky roll of cosmic dice? We look for the answer in the rise of two important components of life, dust and water. It turns out that the universe is laden with water, a byproduct of dust kicked out and spread around by supernovas and black holes.
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ANOTHER EARTH | KEPLER 186F - Full Documentary

If Alien exist where do they live and how do they live?
Scientists say a world that's 490 light-years away qualifies as the first confirmed Earth-sized exoplanet that could sustain life as we know it — but in an environment like nothing we've ever seen.
The planet, known as Kepler-186f, is more of an Earth cousin than an Earth twin, Elisa Quintana, an astronomer at the SETI Institute at NASA Ames Research Center, told the journal Science. Quintana is the lead author of a report on the planet published by Science this week.
This discovery does confirm that Earth-sized planets do exist in the habitable zones of other stars, Quintana said during a Thursday news briefing at NASA Headquarters.
Kepler-186f goes around an M-type dwarf star that's smaller and cooler than our sun. But it orbits much closer to its parent star than Earth does, within what would be Mercury's orbit in our own solar system. Those two factors combine to produce an environment that could allow for liquid water on the surface, assuming that the planet had a heat-trapping atmosphere.

The star, to our eyes, would look slightly orange-y, about a third again as big as our sun but only a third as bright, said co-author Thomas Barclay, a staff scientist for NASA's Kepler mission who is also affiliated with NASA and the Bay Area Environmental Research Institute. At midday, Kepler-186f's landscape might look similar to what we see on Earth an hour before sunset, he told NBC News.
Or it might not: If the planet lacked an atmosphere to retain and redistribute its sun's warmth, it would be a cold, dry, lifeless world.

Kepler-186f probably rates as the most potentially Earthlike planet discovered so far, said Jim Kasting, a geoscientist at Penn State University who did not play a role in the Science study. But he told NBC News that it's still less likely to be habitable than planets around more sunlike stars. Even better prospects for alien habitability might well be identified in the months and years to come.

How the world was found

Kepler-186f is just the latest discovery to be pulled out of terabytes' worth of data collected by the Kepler mission. Before it went on the fritz last year, the Kepler space telescope stared at more than 150,000 stars in a patch of sky, looking for the telltale dimming of starlight as planets passed over the stars' disks. Nearly 1,000 exoplanets have been confirmed using Kepler data, and almost 3,000 more candidates are still awaiting confirmation.

It takes years of observation to confirm the pattern of dimming and brightening that's associated with alien planets, particularly if the planets are small and far from their parent stars. In February, astronomers reported that at least four worlds circled the dwarf star known as Kepler-186 or KOI-571. In this week's Science paper, Quintana and her colleagues confirm the existence of Kepler-186f as the fifth and outermost world.
They report that Kepler-186f is about 10 percent wider than Earth, tracing a 130-day orbit around its sun at a mean distance of 0.35 astronomical units. (An astronomical unit is the distance between Earth and our sun, which is 93 million miles or 150 million kilometers.) That would put Kepler-186f on the cooler, outer side of the star's habitable zone — the range of orbital distances where liquid water could exist on a planet's surface.

Astronomers have confirmed the existence of other planets in their stars' habitable zone, but those prospects are super-Earth-size. Smaller habitable-zone candidates also have been found, but they have yet to be confirmed as planets.

Barclay said Kepler-186f was particularly promising because it's less than 1.5 times the size of Earth. Planets in that size range are more likely to be rocky with a thinner atmosphere, like Earth, Mars and Venus. But worlds exceeding that size stand a better chance of retaining a thick atmosphere of hydrogen and helium, like the giant planet Neptune.

While those planets also could be rocky, they don't remind us of home, Barclay said.
Could we actually detect signs of life on Kepler-186f? That's a tough one. The astronomers behind the discovery acknowledge that the planet might be just too far away for follow-up studies. The SETI Institute has been searching for radio signals from the Kepler-186 system over a wide frequency range (1 to 10 GHz), but so far nothing has been detected.

(Advexon)

Cosmic Journeys - Hubble: Universe in Motion

Since its launch 25 Years ago, the Hubble Telescope has returned images of unprecedented beauty of a dynamic and changing universe.

In this episode of COSMIC JOURNEYS, Hubble’s most iconic images are bought to life to answer some of the most important questions facing astronomers today. Colliding galaxies, the birth and death of stars, jets of gas thrown out by material crashing into distant suns: these incredible images tech us valuable lessons about how galaxies are formed, what dark matter is and even the fate of the earth itself.

ABOUT US
Here at SpaceRip, we value the exploration of the unknown. We surpass boundaries for the sake of uncovering the mysteries of the cosmos and what they may tell us about our origin and our future. With our videos, we hope to educate our viewers on how we fit into the universe, and more so how we can do our part to better it.

We believe there is no better time to inform ourselves about the world around us. Our partnership with MagellanTV is aimed to educate viewers on our complex world to prepare for our rapidly changing future. Through our videos we hope to capture a variety of important topics with the overall goal of promoting positive discussion and action.

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Journey to the Edge of the Universe (Alec Baldwin)

National Geographic presents a beautifully created CGI (Computer-Generated Imagery) documentary which takes us from Earth to the edge of the 'observable universe'.

Narrated stunningly by Alec Baldwin and using images taken from the Hubble telescope, Journey to the Edge of the Universe explores the science and history behind the distant celestial bodies in the solar system and ventures far beyond what we as a species has ever gone before.

This epic odyssey across the cosmos, takes us from the Earth, past our star and nearby planets, out of our Solar System and to galaxies near and far beyond. This will take you to the edge of human understanding.

When you finish this journey, you will have a greater awareness and understanding of the vastness of the enormous universe that the human mind can barely comprehend. We are but a spec of dust in an infinite universe.

This video takes you on a journey unlike any other, and never forget that this isn't even 1% of what we humans understand of the bigger picture.

Cosmic Journeys - Day of the Asteroid

Asteroids racing through the solar system have smashed into Earth before. What are the chances we'll get hit again? Armed with new defensive technologies, scientists are getting ready for the day, a decade, century from now: the Day of the Asteroid.

Cosmic Journeys - Fate of Antarctica

The episode of Cosmic Journeys explores the intersection of paleoclimate and current climate science. Through its turbulent history, Antarctica has played an important role in the evolution of planet Earth. This role will likely continue as a warming global climate begins to eat away at the ice sheets that cover the continent. The fate of the world as we know it is linked to the fate of Antarctica.

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