- Eye candy of the week: Zoltan Sylvester (of Hindered Settling fame) has some fantastic photos from the Geopalooza! exhibit at the Houston Museum of Natural Science.
- Mike Brown on coming up with a name for Make-make (the plutoid formerly known as 2005 FY9 aka Easterbunny):
Its orbit is not particularly strange, but it is big. Probably about 2/3 the size of Pluto. And it is bright. It is the brightest object in the Kuiper belt other than Pluto itself. Unlike, say 2003 EL61, which has so many interesting characteristics that it was hard choosing from so many different appropriate name (more on this later), Easterbunny has no obvious hook. Its surface is covered with large amounts of almost pure methane ice, which is scientifically fascinating, but really not easily relatable to terrestrial mythology. (For a while I was working on coming up with a name related to the oracles at Delphi: some people interpret the reported trance-like state of the oracles to be related to natural gas [methane] seeping out of the earth there. After some thought I decided this theme was just dumb.) Strike one.
More fanciful planetary science, a call for shoe-puking, and blog carnivals below the fold.
- While we’re on planets, here’s an initial planetary science assessment of the World of Warcraft – it’s made of very dense material.
- How is it that I got this far without hearing about the Earth Science Women’s Network?
- Dear me, won’t somebody please puke on John Tierney’s shoes? I’m afraid I’m all out of bile, and I won’t get a chance to pick up another tin from the hazmat exchange until Saturday. Good thing PhysioProf is on the job.
- The inaugural edition of the classic science papers carnival The Giant’s Shoulders is up at A Blog Around the Clock. Earth science entries include heliotypes from the High Plains of Utah, a 1914 handbook for field geologists, and the rhythms of geologic time.
- The next edition of the Accretionary Wedge will be hosted at Ron Schott’s; the topic is field camp geology. Entries are due on July 25th.