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(Jon sez:)

Your Writer: Jon Kilgannon When you're dealing with Martians, it's a good idea to have more than one copy of the weapon that can knock them unconscious.

That rumble suggests that this is about to get rough, doesn't it?

Onward to science: I figure that you probably know that the Space Shuttle Atlantis launched safely, but did you notice that researchers at Penn State are suggesting earthlike planets with deep water oceans may be relatively common? The scientists suggest that planetary systems with Hot Jupiters (massive planets near a star) may often contain earthlike planets in the habitable zone with deep oceans of liquid water.

The paragraph that caught my attention was this one: "The new collaborative research effort may allow planet hunters to determine rough limits for where to search for habitable planets in known systems of giant planets. 'We hope other researchers may be able to use our new model to narrow the list of potential targets in the search for other Earths,' said co-author Steinn Sigurdsson, associate professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Penn State."

I hope this will help the Terrestrial Planet Finder project to find other habitable worlds within a couple of decades.

(Mark sez:)

Your Artist: Mark Sachs I don't really have much for you today, but here's an interesting photograph of a Uranian eclipse. In the meantime, we were kindly given new desktops, which are over in the fan art page as one would expect.