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#937791 03/29/23 04:55 PM
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Mercury has a moon? Could the Jovian-Plutonian Gravitational Effect give you a floating feeling? Virgin Galactic has bought Pluto and has plans for getting it reinstated as a planet? Nope. April Fool hoaxes and jokes.

Astronomy April Fools

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Grenades on board the International Space Station?

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield was clutching two objects that looked like grenades.

But it was April 1, 2013, and they were air grab sample bottles.
.

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NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) for April 1, 2020

Asteroid or Potato? Image Credit: Jack Sutton

Quote
Explanation: Is this asteroid Arrokoth or a potato? Perhaps, after all the data was beamed back to Earth from NASA's robotic New Horizons spacecraft, the featured high resolution image of asteroid Arrokoth was constructed. Perhaps, alternatively, the featured image is of a potato. Let's consider some facts. Arrokoth is the most distant asteroid ever visited and a surviving remnant of the early years of our Solar System. A potato is a root vegetable that you can eat. Happy April Fool's Day from the folks at APOD! Although asteroid Arrokoth may look like a potato, in fact very much like the featured potato, Arrokoth (formerly known as Ultima Thule) is about 200,000 times wider and much harder to eat.

Arrokoth the asteroid
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This is an abstract of an astronomy research paper that was actually submitted. (You might not want to read it all!)

Detection of Rotational Variability in Floofy Objects at Optical Wavelengths
[Submitted on 30 Mar 2021, released 1 Apr 2021]

L. C. Mayorga, E. M. May, J. Lustig-Yaeger, S. E Moran
Phase resolved observations of planetary bodies allow us to understand the longitudinal and latitudinal variations that make each one unique. Rotational variations have been detected in several types of astronomical bodies beyond those of planetary mass, including asteroids, brown dwarfs, and stars. Unexpected rotational variations, such as those presented in this work, reminds us that the universe can be complicated, with more mysteries to uncover. In this work we present evidence for a new class of astronomical objects we identify as "floofy" with observational distinctions between several sub-types of these poorly understood objects. Using optical observations contributed by the community, we have identified rotational variation in several of these floofy objects, which suggests that they may have strong differences between their hemispheres, likely caused by differing reflectivity off their surfaces. Additional sub-types show no rotational variability suggesting a uniform distribution of reflective elements on the floofy object. While the work here is a promising step towards the categorization of floofy objects, further observations with more strictly defined limits on background light, illumination angles, and companion objects are necessary to develop a better understanding of the many remaining mysteries of these astronomical objects.

But what IS a floofy object?

Quote
Mayorga somehow manages to talk about cats for ten pages as if they were planetary bodies, without ever explicitly saying the word “cat.” This meticulously cited paper includes a magnificent set of charts, tables and graphs supporting the discovery of six distinct clusters of these so-called “floofy objects.”
Sky & Telescope

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Hello Mona and all cats out there,

Many times I feel like I am a floofy object. I wonder if it is catching? I wonder which cluster is mine? Or even if I belong to a definite or identified cluster? I mean, if I did then that would mean I was home with many other floofies wouldn't it?

Ah well. Rodin was probably as engaged when he produced his masterpiece. Or maybe not?

Cheers


Lestie Mulholland
Container Gardening Editor

Contain your Delight - it's easy!
1 member likes this: Mona - Astronomy

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