Weekly Roundup 66

This has been a very interesting week with papers ranging from sound being used to administer drugs to the understanding of relativistic electron movement in magnetic fields. There was also my first astrophysics based post in a while talking about the habitability of binary star systems, and it is fitting that I should write about it now. Most up to date readers will know about the TRAPPIST-1 system that I talked about in a weekly roundup six week ago.  This system was amazing as it had an incredibly high number of planets that appeared to be habitable, or at least mildly Earth like, only 12 parsecs away. A study designed for general observation of the system discovered 42 different solar flare events averaging at one every couple of days. These were no small spurts, however, with some of these easily reaching and surpassing the magnitude of the Carrington Event of 1859, the most powerful solar storm recorded to have hit the Earth. Of course some of these planets are even closer to their sun than the Earth is to ours, leading to possibly more devastation for a human colony there. The possibility that alien life could exist in the TRAPPIST system is not gone (it was very small to begin with) as there are certain kinds of species on Earth that would not be adversely affected by such solar radiation.

Despite it being mildly disappointing that such a serene place could turn out to be so uninhabitable in the end, it really goes to show how lucky we are living here on Earth, where worldwide disasters come so very rarely. Until tomorrow, goodnight.


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