Walkabout the Galaxy
Arecibo Observatory; radio telescope; solar cycle
Astrophysics and Astronomy | Physics
Professor Yan Fernandez, Principal Scientist of the Arecibo Observatory, joins Josh and Addie to talk about the unique capabilities of this enormous (300 meters!) radio telescope to study everything from the Earth's atmosphere out to distant pulsars. And speaking of magnetic stars, our dear old Sol seems to be rousing from its latest solar slumber and entering the next 11-year-ish solar cycle. Join us for all the space news and a slew of sci-fi trivia on this episode of Walkabout the Galaxy.
Bringing seasons to Earth for billions of years, obliquity breaks up the monotony of the yearly grind. Known to some of our fans as tilt, obliquity is responsible for late summer sunsets, long winter nights, warm weather Christmas in the Southern Hemisphere, and endless confusion for introductory astronomy students. The tilt of the Earth's axis also gives it a jaunty, precessional wobble every 26,000 years. Without obliquity, bears wouldn't know when to hibernate, leaves wouldn't know when to fall, college students wouldn't know when to go get plastered on spring break. Obliquity, the reason for the seasons.
© Joshua Colwell, All Rights Reserved
Length of Episode
Colwell, Joshua and Dove, Adrienne, "It's That Time of the Solar Cycle" (2020). Walkabout the Galaxy Podcast. 112.