More people should know this!

In the recent times, there have been two very important scientific missions to Mars. One from the NASA and the other one from the CNSA. While the NASA successfully touched the mars with Perseverance and was in the media all around the world, Chinese Mission seemingly went under the radar, having not talked about much. This makes me wonder why is it so. Is it because NASA already did it before and got all the attention or is it because China doesn’t interest people much in the outside world.

Tianwen-1 was CNSA Mars mission 2020 which was launched along with two other missions during the launch window last July 2020. The mission was launched on 23 July, 2020 and after 7 months it entered into Martian orbit. For the next three months it studied the various target landing sites and on 14 May, 2021 the lander and the rover successfully touched down on Mars. This made China the third nation to both land softly and to establish communication from the Martian system. Soviet Union and USA were the other two nations achieving these in the past. On 22 May, 2021, the Zhurong rover drove on the Martian surface via the descent ramps on the landing platform. This made China only the second nation to achieve this after USA, and the first nation to orbit, land and release a rover on its first foray to the Martian space.

You can read more about the mission and it’s purpose from the above Wikipedia link, but the point of this post is to question as to why this Chinese Mission isn’t talked much about on the social media and on the proper media channels. While I came through few articles and YouTube videos without searching for them, I haven’t seen much about this mission on the social media such as Twitter and Instagram. This is maybe due to the fact that these services are banned from the nation. During the Perseverance landing, Twitter made a special like animation and hashtags for it in association with NASA. However due to Twitter not being functional in China, such things couldn’t happen and it significantly reduces the chances of public and media attention.

This may not be the case, but I also thought that Chinese Mission not getting enough media and public attention may also come from the fact that world outside of China has not much interest or is not very keen to know much about what is actually happening in China.

Scientific missions to Mars are very important as to study a lot of different things. NASA’s and CNSA’s mission to Mars will prove very handy in knowing more about this red planet and it’s history, and will benefit humanity on its future missions to Mars and beyond.

Do let me know your thoughts about this, and while I am at it let me also remind you all to please vaccinate yourself, and encourage others to do so as well. Stay safe and stay happy in these times. Thanku.πŸ˜„

What did Hubble see on your birthday?

I was just scrolling through my google feed, when I came across one news article where it was said that as NASA is celebrating Hubble Space Telescope’s 30th anniversary, they have made a tool for people to check out what did Hubble find out on their birthdays.

You can check out the above website to search out for yourself that what did Hubble Space Telescope find out on your birthdays.

While I am at it, let me show you what came out on my birthday. On my birthday, 19 Feb, Hubble discovered the Monkey Head Nebula, NGC 2174.

Do check out and see what did Hubble find on your birthdays and share you thoughts. Stay safe, stay home, stay happy!

Covid scare and laziness.

As Covid-19 is going bonkers in India, most of us are either at home doing household and nothing, or either at front lines fighting the virus itself. Lockdown has been enforced here and that brings added advantages and disadvantages at the same time. I am doing fine, and I hope all of you reading this are staying safe as well.

Vaccination campaign is going on and it will get much needed pace as more people come forward and register themselves for their doses. Manufacturing will be increased as well, because now that everyone over and above 18 can get themselves vaccinated. I ask all of you reading here to get your vaccines as soon as you can and encourage others too. We are all in this together. We will win this.

Over one year already of staying indoors most of the time, laziness has got me big time. I have asked my friends to suggest some workouts and exercises. I have never been too much into these but I think I need them because I cannot lose my body shape staying at home for such a long time now. So yes, I will be doing some exercises to make sure I get back in shape.

Fun fact – Pistol Star is the brightest known star in the Milky Way, probably 10 million times brighter than the sun.

Stay safe everyone. Take care. πŸ™

Mars and Perseverance

Hello, fellow bloggers and readers. Back at writing this week. And, as all of us might be aware, the Perseverance rover has finally made it to the Jezero Crater on Mars on 18th Feb 2021. While the mission has just started, the rover has already started rolling out several images and videos straight from the Martian surface. The phenomenal rover landing video is breaking the internet all over the world and the first of many high-definition images from Mars.

Perseverance Landing Skycrane.jpg
Photograph of the rover Perseverance from its sky crane during landing (Wikipedia)

I am very happy and excited about this mission because of how much it’s directly linked with common folks like us. Perseverance rover is carrying names of more than 10million people with itself, while the name Perseverance was also chosen after a competition held around the world where the students were asked to submit names for the rover. NASA made sure that people around the world can see themselves connected with the mission which is operating two ways from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to the Jezero Crater where the rover has landed. Not only the scientific community but also the common people around the world feel connected to the mission directly due to such efforts, which is commendable.
First image taken by the rover after its successful landing (Wikipedia)
First color image from Perseverance rover after landing (Wikipedia)
Mars – Perseverance rover – Landing Site Panoramic View (18 February 2021) (Wikipedia)

The mission took off on 30th July 2020 and landed on Jezero Crater on Mars on 18th Feb 2021. But the actual mission has just started. Perseverance will collect several Martian rock and soil samples which will be taken back to Earth on a future mission. It will be the first time such a thing will happen where a mission will send samples back to Earth. Scientists and researchers will work on all the data and samples from Mars which will be collected by Perseverance to study the astrobiology of the planet Mars and the potential for life on the planet itself.

Ingenuity, a small helicopter that was sent with the Perseverance rover will also be deployed after 60 days from landing to test the first powered flight on another planet. The test will help NASA scientists to work on similar technology for future missions.

And while I am at it, let me also applause the work of Indian American scientist Swati Mohan, who is the lead scientist for this Mars mission. She announced the successful touchdown of the Perseverance on the Martian surface. A proud moment for all of us indeed.

Also, let me tell you that I have recently uploaded my new Podcast episode on the same topic as here, so you can check it out if interested just in case.

I hope the Perseverance mission will help scientists and researchers all around the world in new research and findings. I sincerely appreciate and applaud their work. πŸ™

Thanku for reading, do tell me your views and opinions on the Perseverance mission in the comments. Stay safe and take care guys. πŸ™

Change of views! Maybe?

Hello fellow bloggers and readers. Previously too in a post, I had stressed how the money which is being spent on space exploration and life in space can be utilized for the betterment of the Earth itself. Like how we can utilize the resources we are spending to find life outside of the Earth can be used to tackle the various environmental issues on this planet itself.

However, now almost a year later after I published that post itself, my thoughts have changed and I think there are certain reasons why research relating to finding other planets for life is necessary.

  1. Earth has limited resources and the population increase at an all-time high. We need to find more and more resources to keep fulfilling the demand of this increased population load. We might face problems in the future where certain resources available on Earth might go away and we need to turn towards space for them.
  2. Mass extinction is possible. Covid-19 pandemic, everyone knows about it. The pandemic spread throughout the world, causing an immense amount of economic loss. Moreover, we have lost millions in just a year to this pandemic. If in the future, a pandemic spreads, which cannot be stopped and controlled, leaving to other planets with people who are in good health may be the only option. This will ensure that humanity survives deadly diseases.

To be honest, I am still very much in the favor of using the resources we have for the betterment of this planet. Controlling climate change and using sustainable development are among them. Research and development should always go on as I have said previously. Space research will serve a better purpose for humanity for its long term plans. For now, research in space and working towards the betterment of Earth should go hand in hand. Let’s work together towards ensuring this, why look to something else when we are being gifted with such a beautiful planet.

I hope you enjoyed reading this. You can always post your thoughts and views in the comment box down below. Also, you can tell me if you agree or disagree with the points I mentioned above.
Stay safe. Take care all. ^_^

New year, New things!

Hello fellow bloggers and readers. Pleased to get back again to some writing here. πŸ™

As soon as new year started rolling, I started trying a few new and interesting things. First of them, being active with my friend on our YouTube channel. Channel name is ‘BeatsSaz’, where we upload music and beats. But what is interesting here is I now have my own new podcast, named ‘Exploring The Skies’ which is hosted by me and is available on all major podcast services.

Yeah, things are a bit messy right now, haven’t completely settled on what I will be talking in the podcast, started off with discussion related to basic stargazing and amatuer astronomy and also binoculars. I have been thinking to improve the overall quality and content as I move ahead with it. Like improvement in the script, in the language, the accent and many more. But the most important of them is the content, where I will spend most of my time on. Best content will make sure the podcast serves it’s purpose right and more people will listen to it.

I will pin all the links down below, so you can check them out according to your liking. πŸ™

One thing to note is that I have improved my vocabulary a lot due to this podcast, and I am seeing a lot of other positives as well. I am looking forward to bringing more content and collaborations with this podcast and I hope people will join me in this.

If you have any suggestions, questions or just plain thoughts, do tell me in the comments. I will love to reply to you and have conversation about this very new experiment I am doing.

Have a great day ahead, thanku for reading. πŸ™

Podcast name – ‘Exploring The Skies’

Spotify | Google Podcasts | Pocketcasts | Breaker | RadioPublic | YouTube


What was it?

Jupiter and Saturn get close to one another from our perspective on Earth about once every 20 years because of their orbits. This year, however, the two planets came closer to each other than they have in centuries, known as a “Great Conjunction.”

When it happened?

Monday, 21 December, 2020, the very same day Winter Solstice happens in the Northern Hemisphere.

Quoting fromΒ

Today, Saturn and Jupiter will appear just one-tenth of a degree apart, or about the thickness of a dime held at arm’s length, according to a statement a Dec. 2 skywatching NASA statement. Under high magnification, however, Jupiter and Saturn may appear as separate objects. Observers with binoculars or telescopes may see the planets and some of their moons in the same field of vision.

What was it like?

For anyone who witnessed this once in a lifetime moment, you are extremely lucky. The gas giants came this close after 400 years and were visible in the night sky after 800 years. Southwest in the night sky, an unusually bright object was visible, brighter than any normal star visible at night. They were Jupiter and Saturn respectively. They were so close that from the naked eyes, they were visible like one single bright object.

How close to be specific?

Jupiter and Saturn were close, but actually, they were 456 million miles (734 million km) apart from each other.

Did I witness this?

Ofc, I did. There is nothing more special for us sky gazers than watching unusual and great sights in the night sky.

The Great Conjunction.

This is the shot I took while looking at the conjunction. If you look closely, zooming into this, you can see two faint objects at the top right. Yes, they are the planets.Β 

We were all extremely lucky to witness this great moment, it was visible almost everywhere on Earth, but many YouTube channels were broadcasting this moment live for people who might be busy or weren’t able to go out to witness this or maybe could not see because of obstruction in the sky.

Personally, for me, this was a great moment, and I will forever be grateful for what I witnessed. This moment was rare, extremely rare, once in a lifetime. You can share your thoughts and memories about this moment. ^_^