Opinion

Giant gas cloud, made entirely of alcohol, found in space

OPINION: There was great excitement in scientific communities recently when a giant gas cloud, made up entirely of alcohol, was found in space.

This boozy nebula is about 463 billion kilometres long and would contain enough alcohol to make the equivalent of 400 trillion trillion pints of beer.

That wasn't what got people excited, though (among other reasons why drinkers shouldn't start looking into astronaut courses, the cloud is about 10,000 light years away, and the form of alcohol is methyl rather than ethanol).

No, the reason the cloud caused a stir is because the astronomers who found it believe it provides a glimpse of how a star is created.

Dr Lisa Harvey-Smith, who is the principal investigator for the study, said they had measured physical properties of the gas such as temperature, pressure and the strength and direction of the magnetic fields.

This information is vital when testing theories about how stars are born from the primordial gas in what is termed a "stellar nursery".

The team studied an area called W3 (OH), a region in our galaxy where stars are being formed by the gravitational collapse of a cloud of gas and dust.

I don't know about you, but I think that is pretty amazing.

It is official; we are living in the future promised to us by science fiction writers for decades.

We have not one but two roaming robotic laboratories presently on another planet (Mars).

They are collecting data and looking to see if any evidence exists as to whether life ever existed on the Red Planet.

NASA is building a probe that will fly to the exterior layers of the sun.

Astronomers are finding new planets and moons that contain the necessary building blocks to support life as we know it, as well as finding giant clouds of alcohol floating around.

Last year, we had an astronaut visit Maryborough to tell us about the work of the International Space Station that's helping us learn how humans can live and thrive in space for long durations.

The Space Station has six astronauts living in it, conducting research, learning how to live and work in space over long periods of time.

Across the world, the hardy souls who make up a club called The Adventurists are looking into how to get amateur travel and excitement enthusiasts on an expedition to the moon.

To use a Bill Lawry quote: "It's all happening".

Whenever life starts to seem a little mundane or dull, take a moment to consider how amazing the universe is, and how the human race is advancing to continue unravelling its many mysteries.

For more information on the cloud of alcohol, visit phys.org/news.

Topics:  alcohol astronomers discovery roderick makim scab science



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Former Shark Show for sale for $1.3 million

Vic Hislop at the old Shark Show.

TALK about a jaws-dropping real estate opportunity.

BAUPLE: Residents say 'bring back the business climate'

Marc Bromet with daughter Yolande, outside the Bauple Macadamia House.

Marc and Yolande Bromet discuss how to put Bauple back on the map.

Olds Engineering staff recreate the SS Dicky's bell

Taking home the replica SS Dicky bells were  Louise Bauer, SS Dicky Taskforce community representative Colin White and Sunshine Coast Council deputy mayor Tim Dwyer,  Olds Engineering employees Peter Olds and (front) Lachlan Hansen.

Olds Engineering staff recreate the SS Dicky's bell.

Local Partners

Jennifer Lawrence apologises to the people of Hawaii

Jennifer Lawrence sorry for 'offensive' story

Cruz Beckham's single a 'one-off'

He is not planning to launch a full-time music career yet.

Louis Tomlinson's mother dies aged 42

Louis Tomlinson's mother has died.

Star Wars spin off gets green light grom Lucas

Riz Ahmed, Diego Luna, Felicity Jones, Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen star in the movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

Lucas said to have enjoyed the latest Star Wars spin-off

BOOK REVIEW: The Mask of Command

This narrative from Anicent Rome has it all

The tech-version of the old pop-up book is here

IS THE old cardboard pop-up book a thing of the past?

Essential to get new Maroochydore CBD fundamentals right

LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

SunCentral reports good progress on 53ha Sunshine Coast city heart

'Crucial' farm land eyed by defence department

Lawson Geddes moving the Brangus cattle to higher ground - which is the land the Defence Department is interested taking for the Shoalwater Bay expansion.

"You can't have one without the other.”

Former Shark Show for sale for $1.3 million

Vic Hislop at the old Shark Show.

TALK about a jaws-dropping real estate opportunity.

There's a whole lot of luxury in this home

The Endeavour Foundation's latest prize home in Mountain Creek.

WHEN it comes to desirable homes, it's hard to go past a prize home.

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!