Antarctic Larsen C Ice Shelf Expanding Rifts

This rift, which may threaten the stability of Larsen C, has grown significantly and rapidly during the Antarctic polar night.  It will shed an iceberg the size of Delaware.   The rift is now 22km longer than when satellites were last able to observe it in March of this year.  When this breaks free it will remove between nine and twelve percent of the ice shelf area and leave the ice front at its most retreated position ever.

via Project MIDAS | A growing rift on Larsen C.

Is space lightning a thing?

On Aug. 13th in China, photographer Phebe Pan was photographing the night sky, hoping to catch a Perseid meteor. Instead, he witnessed a spectacular bolt of “space lightning.” Working atop Shi Keng Kong, the highest mountain peak in the Guangdong province, “I was using a fisheye lens to capture as much of the sky as possible,” says Pan. “Suddenly we saw a flash of blue and purple ejected from the top of a nearby thundercloud. It just looked like a tree with branches, and grew up very fast. So awesome!”

Star BFFs

AR Scorpii, previously identified as a single, variable star, is actually two, a compact white dwarf the size of the Earth but 200,000 times more massive, and a cool red dwarf a third the size of the Sun. By examining the system with the Very Large Telescope at the European Southern Observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope and others, astronomers have now learned that the white dwarf is spinning incredibly fast, charging up electrons to almost the speed of light.

via The Terrifying Reason This Star Flickers Every Two Minutes.