Moutmout's blog

Astronomy, computers, random thoughts

Sylvia Ekström

Stars are our mothers

15-Minute Read

Sylvia Ekström in front of a picture of nebula and stars

This morning we are with Sylvia Ekström who is an astrophysicist at the Observatory of Geneva. She studies the way massive stars evolve over time. She is also very involved in outreach at the Observatory of Geneva and in the entire region. She will tell us about stars and her atypical career.

Top seven space foods

Best anecdotes about the stuff astronauts are fed

7-Minute Read

Sunita Williams eating ice cream in the ISS. NASA.

Food in space is complicated. It has to be good enough for astronauts to actually eat it, it has to be healthy so that astronauts don’t end up sick, it has to keep for months at a time, it has to be compact,… To make things worse, in micro-gravity, your taste buds don’t work quite the same. For instance, Peggy Whitson discovered that in micro-gravity, she likes some foods that she didn’t like on Earth, but doesn’t like other foods that she usually loves. So feeding…

The peculiar adventure of the first woman in space

Of the importance of diverse teams

2-Minute Read

Sally Ride in the Space Shuttle. NASA.

In 1963, the USSR sent Valentina Tereshkova – the first female cosmonaut – into orbit around the Earth. It was another 20 years before the United States overcame the systemic sexism that was keeping them from sending women into space.

Christopher Colombus

A visionnary genius? Really?

3-Minute Read

The ships of Christopher Columbus. Gustav Adolf Karl Closs. Public Domain.

In elementary school, I learned that Christopher Columbus was the only man in his time to believe that the Earth was round. This is why he wanted to sail westwards to India, to prove everyone wrong. People would tell him “You’re crazy! You’re going to reach the edge of the flat Earth!", and he would answer “Of course not, the Earth is round!". So in a way, he is painted to be this visionary genius who made it possible for Europeans to arrive on a new continent.

Green peas

Discovering a new type of galaxy is possible for amateurs?!?

3-Minute Read

A green pea galaxy imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope. NASA.

There is a kind of small, compact galaxy in which many stars are forming. They are one tenth of the size of our own Milky Way Galaxy, and one hundred times more compact. They are called green pea galaxies.

Top 5 unexpected objects in space

What do you think is the most unexpected object in space?

4-Minute Read

My avatar

In 1957, Sputnik was launched, marking the begining of the era of space exploration. It was the first time humans put an object in orbit around the Earth. Since that date, we have sent many satellites, probes, capsules, and space stations into space. And we also sent a few objects that are more… unexpected.

Space Condoms

Astronauts too can have issues with toxic masculinity

2-Minute Read

My avatar

Astronauts are hand-picked among tens of thousands of other candidates to travel into space. So you might think that once they went through all of this, they don’t have anything left to prove to anyone… And yet…

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PhD, astrophysicist. I play with keyboards and telescopes whenever I can.