Rare 'Solar Trilobite' Seen By NASA
Science fiction writers sometimes see living creatures in the sun.
In his 1959 story Out of the Sun, Arthur C. Clarke wrote about a solar observatory on Mercury that made an incredible, unexpected observation:
We were looking at what seemed to be a translucent oval, its interior laced with a network of almost invisible lines. Where the lines crossed there appeared to be tiny, pulsing nodes of light...
What we were seeing was impossible, yet the evidence was there before our eyes. We were looking at life, where no life could exist.
The eruption had hurled the thing out of its normal environment, deep down in the flaming atmosphere of the sun...
Writer Stephen Baxter wrote in his 1994 novel Ring about photino birds, creatures that lived within suns, and could even fly between them:
She descended into the Sun, through the ... flock of photino birds. The birds soared past and around her, tiny planets of dark matter racing through their tight solar orbits.
The birds continually nudged toward or away from each other, like a horde of satellites maneuvering for docking. Many of the transient clusters they formed ... seemed immensely complex. There had to be a reason for all this activity...
(From Ring, published 1994)
Last week, solar physicists met in Boulder, Colorado and watched a magnetogram - a movie that tracked the magnetic flux of sunspot 10926 as it broke through the surface of the sun. An object as large as a planet materialized; it looked like a giant trilobite swimming to the surface.
(Solar Trilobite - sunspot 10926)
Still photographs don't do the phenomenon justice; take a look at the video of a solar trilobite on Science@NASA.
It is remarkable how inorganic phenomena can give the appearance of life. Take a look at this article on solar tadpoles for another example.
Via Science@NASA; thanks to Fred for the tip.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/19/2007)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )
Related News Stories -
Elon Musk Tweets Versions Of Clarke's Operation Cleanup
'Fortunately, the old orbital forts were superbly equipped for this task.' - Arthur C. Clarke, 1978.
Espresso Telescope Searches For Exoplanets
'These instruments were the wonderful ones our astronomers had perfected.' - Edmond Hamilton, 1936.
Manned Maneuvering Unit From 1984
'The glittering little rocket bolted to the black iron behind him.' - Jack Williamson, 1933.
Astronaut Gets Younger In Space
'So what we're looking for now is not an antibiotic - an anti-life drug - but an anti-agathic, an anti-death drug...' - James Blish, 1957.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Las Vegas Humans Ready To Strike Over Robots
'A worker replaced by a nubot... had to be compensated.'
You'll Regrow That Limb, One Day
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to regrow his lost fingers.'
Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.'
Somnox Sleep Robot - Your Sleepytime Cuddlebot
Science fiction authors are serious about sleep, too.
Real-Life Macau or Ghost In The Shell
Art imitates life imitates art.
Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.'
First 3D Printed Human Corneas From Stem Cells
Just what we need! Lots of spare parts.
VirtualHome: Teaching Robots To Do Chores Around The House
'Just what did I want Flexible Frank to do? - any work a human being does around a house.'
Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) Workshop
SF writers have thought about this since the 19th century.
Nanorobots Roam Your Bloodstream, Cleaning It
Too bad they won't have lasers, though...
Galini 3D Printed Sleeping Pod Tiny Houses
'The houses are prefabricated units...'
MIT Boffins Create Psychopath AI On Purpose
There's a lesson in this for neural net AI engineers everywhere.
Skin Electronics 3D Printed
'June's body is a tracery of lambent lines, like some arcane capillary circuitry...'
Artificial Sensory Neurons For Prosthetics, Robots
Great for humans and robots!
China Uses Artificial Intelligence To Grade Student Papers
Looks like the City Fathers are starting to take over China's education system.
Electronic Tongues Will Rule The Kitchen
'Install taste buds in the end of one tentacle...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories