The Earth Was Almost Fried Back in 2012

A massive solar storm in July 2012 was more intense than thought—and it blasted right through the Earth's orbit. Luckily for us, we were on the other side of the sun, thus missing the chaos completely. But if that storm had hit this beautiful little blue marble in space? "The solar bursts would have enveloped Earth in magnetic fireworks matching the largest magnetic storm ever reported on Earth, the so-called Carrington event of 1859," Science Daily reports. Read More >>

New Satellite Shield Uses Pigment Found in Prehistoric Cave Paintings

The European Space Agency's new solar satellite will be partially shielded for heat protection using a bone-based pigment found in prehistoric cave paintings. The result will be a surreal cross between the earliest era of human cognition and creativity and the outer reaches of our current mechanical sciences. Read More >>

London's Car-Nuking Deathray Skyscraper Getting Aluminium Fins to Absorb Sunlight

The unfortunate Walkie Scorchie, or the London tower with the ability to harness the Sun's power and melt parked cars on the street below, is set for a redesign. Its owners have applied for permission to install aluminium fins on it to dissipate the deadly heat-ray. Read More >>

The Best Science Visualisations of the Year

From microscopic coral to massive planets, the natural world is full of beauty on a scale that can only be seen with the aid of a microscope or a telescope. The winners of the 11th annual International Science and Engineering Visualisation Challenge have been announced—sponsored by the journal Science and the U.S. National Science Foundation—letting us zoom in to microscopic scales and zoom out onto planetary scales. Read More >>

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This Isn't Abstract Art, it's the Sun

It might look more like abstract art than anything else, but you're actually looking at a series of observations of the Sun. Read More >>

Let the Sun Spark Your Cigarette With This Solar-Powered Lighter

Perfect for smokers who live in windy cities, this compact parabolic reflector lets you harness the sun as your own personal lighter—one that's immune to even the strongest winds. Read More >>

A Bracelet to Keep You Safe From the Sun and Tell You What SPF to Use

Neatmo is slowly creating a reputation for itself of combining smart sensors with neat design, having recently teamed up with Philippe Starck to produce a sleek wireless thermostat. Now, it's joined forces with Louis Vuitton to produce a bracelet that'll keep you safe in the sun. Read More >>

The Sun Spewed Out a Beautiful Solar Flare This Week

The sun emitted a solar flare at 8:30 pm EDT on October 23rd, and NASA captured in all its glory at its Solar Dynamics Observatory. Doesn't it look pretty? Read More >>

Watch a 200,000-Mile Canyon of Fire Rip Open on the Sun

Trying to watch the sun's explosions with your naked eyes is a recipe for blindness, but luckily NASA has a couple of telescopes that can show you all that fusion glory with none of the permanent ocular damage. Take, for instance, this 200,000-mile long canyon of fire. Read More >>

We've Got 1.75bn Years Left on Earth, Unless We Bollocks it up First

Scientists examining the collapse of other possibly life-supporting planets similar to Earth suggest we've got around 1.75bn years left to lounge about on this particular rock, before changes in the Sun make it impossible to live. Assuming we don't nuke/melt/burn/poison ourselves out of existence first, that is. Read More >>

New Stacked Solar Cells Can Withstand the Power of 70,000 Suns

The power of 1,000 suns? Pfft. That ain't nuthin'. A recent breakthrough in solar panel connections has allowed scientists to create arrays of solar cells that can stand strong under the blazing glare of 70,000 suns. Not that they'd ever have to, but still. Read More >>

It's Not Just Cars That London's Walkie Scorchie's Setting Fire to

If you thought it was just Jags and vans getting the sunlight death-ray from London's newest skyscraper the Walkie Talkie, think again. The "Scorchie" has now managed to set fire to the carpet of a nearby barber's shop, and if that wasn't enough, it's hot enough to fry an egg. Read More >>

London's 'Walkie Scorchie' Tower Is Really Just a Massive Free Tanning Salon

Careful where you walk in London on a sunny day, you might end up inadvertently getting cooked. Apparently the weird-looking new Walkie Talkie skyscraper in the city acts as a giant mirror, focussing the Sun's intense rays on the street below, blinding people and actually melting cars. Read More >>

Would Never Going Outside Really Be That Bad For Us? Sadly, Yes

When you think about all the forms of indoor entertainment available to us, the internet, satellite TV, video games, it's no surprise that the outdoors is having a hard time competing for our attention. But it turns out that a little exposure to the sun is not just beneficial, it's actually vital to our health. Read More >>

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Venus, Please Be More Of A Badass In This Photo

This looks like your brain on drugs, but it's actually a rare solar eclipse from last June in which Venus moved between the Sun and the Earth the way the Moon usually does. Venus looked like a thinner and thinner crescent until it was perfectly aligned with the Sun, creating a Venusian annular eclipse with a ring of fire. The Solar Dynamics Observatory imaged the Sun in three colors of UV light, producing data for this image. The next Venusian solar eclipse will occur in 2117, so you'll have time to enjoy this photo for awhile before it's challenged by something even crazier. [APOD] Read More >>

A Norse Town Has Built an Artificial Sun to Light Up Its 5-Month Night

The far north (or south) isn't the only place on Earth that spends the winter locked in perpetual darkness. Beginning in September and ending in March, the tiny Norwegian town of Rjukan is cast into a perpetual shadow. But no longer. This month, engineers are completing The Mirror Project, a system that will shed winter light on Rjukan for the first time in history. Read More >>


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