Found: A never-before-seen asteroid with six comet-like tails

Found: A never-before-seen asteroid with six comet-like tails
News from Los Angeles Times:

A bizarre, never-before-seen asteroid with six comet-like tails has been found in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, and scientists are shocked.

“I’m trying not to use the word ‘freak,’” said David Jewitt of UCLA and lead author of a paper about the six-tailed asteroid, “but that’s what it is. It is definitely freakish.”

A NASA release described the asteroid as looking like “a rotating lawn sprinkler” with dust radiating out from it like spokes on a wheel. 

PHOTOS: Amazing images from space

What makes this find especially weird is that asteroids almost never have any kind of tail at all.

Those dramatic blue tails we see in images from space are generally associated with comets — “dirty snowballs” that originate in the outer regions of our solar system. The tail forms when the comet’s orbit takes it close enough to the sun that the ice in its nucleus melts, releasing dust and gas that trail behind it. 

But asteroids, also……………. continues on Los Angeles Times

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Abbott’s climate change Achilles heel: the weather
News from Sydney Morning Herald:

It was a clarion call from the towering figure of Australian conservative politics, and John Howard’s ode to climate scepticism last week seemed to galvanise the Abbott government.

In a speech titled ”One Religion is Enough” in London on Tuesday, the former prime minister railed against ”sanctimonious” climate change advocates, declared himself an agnostic on the science and said anyone who drew links between this year’s early bushfires and global warming was an ”alarmist”.

It was a vehement and revealing dissertation from Howard, and was followed by an equally emphatic – and dismissive – statement of intent on climate change from the Coalition government.

These days Tony Abbott says he believes in climate science. Photo: Glenn Hunt

Neither Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop nor Environment Minister Greg Hunt will now be attending global talks in Warsaw on how to reduce global greenhouse emissions. Not even a parliamentary secretary will represent.

Hunt’s focus, he said, would have to be on repealing the carbon tax, this nation’s primary – and tentatively successful – measure to reduce carbon emissions. Then there were revelations of the culling of up to 1500 jobs at CSIRO, one of Australia’s pre-eminent climate change research institutions.

And, perhaps most ominously, the Queensland government launched its plan to develop the Galilee Basi……………. continues on Sydney Morning Herald

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