The collision between Earth and a forming planet

The moon was formed by a violent, head-on collision between the early Earth and a “planetary embryo” called Theia approximately 100 million years after the Earth formed, UCLA geochemists and colleagues report.

Scientists had already known about this high-speed crash, which occurred almost 4.5 billion years ago, but many thought the Earth collided with Theia (pronounced THAY-eh) at an angle of 45 degrees or more — a powerful side-swipe (simulated in this 2012 YouTube video). New evidence reported Jan. 29 in the journal Science substantially strengthens the case for a head-on assault.

The extremely similar chemical composition of rocks on the Earth and moon helped scientists determine that a head-on collision, not a glancing blow, took place between Earth and Theia.

Find out more about this new theory

Hi everyone!!! So I know this is a total long shot but I need to ask you all for a favor. Yesterday evening my community lost a wonderful girl named Erin Jeffers in a head on collision. She was only 16 and there was never a time she wasn’t making someone smile. She was such a good hearted and down to earth person who was tragically taken from us at a young age. Her twin sister, who thankfully managed to survive the wreck, feels incredibly guilty as she was the one driving. Erin absolutely loved Justin Bieber and always said that when she passed away she would want him to sing at her funeral, now we all know that’s a long shot that will probably never happen but we’re trying so hard to get his attention even if it just means he tells her family how sorry he is. So here’s where I ask the favor I mentioned earlier… I know the tumblr community is full of amazing people so I thought maybe you guys could help us all out by sharing this picture and clicking the link below and tagging Justin in the comments, everything helps so please please take 5 seconds out of your day to reblog and comment, it would absolutely mean the world to all of us.

Here’s the link to the instagram post: http://instagram.com/p/xk9XLZLMJG/

It’s a long and winding road for the particles that recreate the Big Bang. Check out this view of the twists and turns ions take to get into our atom smasher, the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider.

At RHIC, heavy ions start their journey toward the rings in a linear accelerator – in this animation it’s the awesomely named Tandem van de Graaff that’s boosting the particles, which just recently retired from its duties at RHIC. The ions then get kicked into a small booster ring, where they pick up speed and head to the Alternating Gradient Synchrotron. That’s an even bigger ring, and to get these particles to practically the speed of light, we have to sling them around the AGS until they’re fast enough to enter the 2-mile RHIC ring and head in opposite directions toward their ultimate head-on collision. 

Happy 4th of July From All Of Us At Penny4NASA!

The Cartwheel Galaxy is a ring galaxy located about 500 million light-years away in the constellation Sculptor. It was once a normal spiral galaxy until it experienced a head-on collision with a nearby galaxy approximately 100-200 million years ago. “Usually a galaxy is brighter toward the center, but the ultraviolet view (blue) indicates the collision actually smoothed out the interior of the galaxy, concentrating older stars and dust into the inner regions. It’s like the calm after the storm of star formation,” according to Phil Appleton of the California Institute of Technology.

The collision created waves of brief star formation rippling out from its center, the first being the bright blue outermost ring composed of many young massive stars. The second wave is the yellow-orange inner ring where less star formation is taking place. “It’s like dropping a stone into a pond, only in this case, the pond is the galaxy, and the wave is the compression of gas,” Appleton explained. “Each wave represents a burst of star formation, with the youngest stars found in the outer ring.”

Read more about the Cartwheel Galaxy here:

Image Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech

Germany's Kramer can't remember World Cup final after blow to the head

A World Cup final is the type of game a player wants to remember every minute of. Unfortunately, Germany’s Christoph Kramer, who took a blow to the head yesterday in a collision with Argentina’s Ezequiel Garay, now says he can’t remember much of it at all.

Kramer took a blow to the face early, and then continued playing for 14 minutes before slumping to the ground. Kramer had to be carried off. (Gonzalo Higuain also took a blow to the head from the knee of German keeper Manuel Neuer in the game, but never seemed to lose consciousness.)

“I can’t really remember much of the game,” Kramer told German newspaper Die Welt. 

“I don’t know anything at all about the first half. I thought later that I left the game immediately after the tackle. I have no idea how I got to the changing rooms. I don’t know anything else. In my head, the game starts from the second half.”

Concussions are no joke. Post-concussion syndromes have been linked to dementia, depression and death. Lingering injuries from concussions have also ended a number of top players’ careers, including that of former USA forward Taylor Twellman.

FIFA has also been criticized for their handling of head injuries during this past tournament: Uruguay defender Alvaro Pereira appeared to be briefly knocked unconscious after a knee to the head, but demanded to be and was allowed to continue playing. 

Kramer’s incident – and his subsequent admission – will heap on more pressure for FIFA to allow independent concussion testing. One solution? Allowing teams to use a free substitute while the player in question is being evaluated. 

(h/t The Independent)

(Image: Getty)

“Friends find her a bubbling stockpot of contradictions. She is mortally serious—and completely wacko. She works like a dog—and plays like a puppy…—and when she laughs she looks like a girl of 17. She’s a glamorous star—and a domestic drudge. She loves the camera—and dreads the public eye. Her mind is ice-clear—her passions sizzle. She adores her husband—and several of her costars. She’s obsessed with her children—and possessed by her creative demon. In short, she’s a working mother on a grand scale, an immoderately modern woman who while running a double life without too many head-on collisions has somehow achieved an emotional balance hard to distinguish from wisdom.” 

-LIFE Magazine (December 1987)


Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider at Brookhaven National Laboratory 
Produces Quark Soup at Big Bang Temperatures of 4 trillion degrees Celsius

  • Brookhaven’s accelerator physicists have begun pumping liquid helium into RHIC’s 1,740 superconducting magnets to chill them to near absolute zero (-273 degrees Celsius—the coldest anything can get).
  • When the magnets are operating with zero energy loss, the physicists will begin injecting beams of gold ions and steering them into head-on collisions at nearly the speed of light.
  • These collisions create temperatures of 4 trillion degrees Celsius, or 250,000 times hotter than the center of the sun.

  • The result is a liquid quark-gluon plasma, mimicking the universe an instant after the Big Bang.

SOURCE: Brookhaven National Laboratory Newsroom February 3, 2014

TOP IMAGE:  Credit: Enrique Diaz  ||  The massive STAR detector that tracks the thousands of particles produced by each ion collision weighs 1,200 tons and is as large as a house. It is used (with the HFT, below) to search for signatures of quark-gluon plasma (QGP), the form of matter that RHIC was designed to create.

MIDDLE IMAGE:    Installed in the STAR detector, the Heavy Flavor Tracker tracks particles made of “charm” and “beauty” quarks, rare varieties (or “flavors”) that are more massive than the lighter “up” and “down” quarks that make up ordinary matter.

[1] The central portion of the Heavy Flavor Tracker (HFT) being installed at RHIC’s STAR detector (top), and  [2] the surrounding portion before installation (bottom).  Via BNL Newsroom.  

BOTTOM IMAGE: Technician Mike Myers checks components of stochastic cooling “kickers,” which generate electric fields to nudge ions in RHIC’s gold beams back into tightly packed bunches.  (via ScienceDaily)

Calvin Harris Suffers Minor Injuries In Head-On Sherman Oaks Crash

SHERMAN OAKS (CBSLA.com) — Recording artist Calvin Harris was transported to the hospital with minor injuries sustained in a head-on collision in Sherman Oaks Friday night, the LAPD Valley Traffic Division said.

Harris was travelling on Coldwater Canyon south of Ventura Blvd. in a Cadillac SUV at around 11 p.m. when his SUV collided head-on with a Volkswagen bug that took a tight curve too quickly, according to the LAPD.

Harris suffered a small cut on the bridge of his nose and was taken to the hospital, but later left.

There were five people in the VW bug, which was driven by a 16-year-old girl. One of the passengers who was not wearing a seat belt was ejected from the car and suffered a broken pelvis, police said.

Alcohol was not believed to be a factor in the crash.