Happy Earth Day 2010 – Earth"Spheres" from Space

The Moon and the Atmosphere of Earth
The Moon and the Atmosphere of Earth

Today is the 40th Earth Day, a great opportunity to remind us that our planet is unique and should be taken care of. Each of us can help by small actions which could save energy, water and other resources. Recent studies clearly indicate that we, our society and our way of life, are having an impact on our planet. The emission of carbon dioxide due to human activities which is increasing the temperature, the so-called global warming, is one of them. The massive extinction of animal and planet species or the biodiversity loss should not be forgotten, since it will also have an impact on our civilization. This problem is taken seriously by the biologists and the year 2010 is the International Year of Biodiversity.

Walking on the Moon

This month has been designated Global Astronomy Month, those of us who were involved in 100 Hours of Astronomy and couldn’t get enough so here we are now taking a walk on the Moon with the Virtual Telescope during the Global Astronomy Month Lunar Week Remote Observing event which is happening NOW at: http://virtualtelescope.bellatrixobservatory.org/webtv.html

Venus: Another volcanically active world?

Dear Planetary enthusiasts,

Over the past week, we may have heard a lot about a famous volcano in Iceland, named Eyjafjallajokull, which forced more than 64,000 flights between Europe and the rest of the world to be canceled and affected the vacation and business trips of several millions of people. But have you heard about the Idunn Mons, Hathor and Innini Montes and Mielikki Mons? These are other exotic names for volcanoes located on another planet,  a world that we suspected for a long time to be volcanically active as well. A recent discovery may have confirmed the existence of active volcanoes on Venus.

Corot-9b: Did COROT discover a Pandora-like world?


I was in Europe last month to attend a workshop on asteroid size and shape and also to visit my colleagues at the observatoire de Paris. It was a very useful trip and the timing was perfect since the COROT consortium announced the discovery of a very interesting exoplanet named COROT-9b. It took me a while to write this post, but since this is an important discovery, I could not avoid to write about.

Life at the SETI Institute: Meet myself :)

NB: I found this post in my draft mailbox. I apparently never published it (written in Jan 2010)

Hello dear readers,

I am still working on my post about the year 2011 budget, but it should be ready this weekend. In the mean time if you want to know a bit more about my research at the SETI Institute, you can have a look on the first series of article called “Life at the SETI Institute: Meet a Scientist” written by Gail Jacobs for the Huffington Post.