15 September 2014

Ice spires, double sunrises, methane seas

...the ice spires of Callisto; Verona Rupes a great cliff on Miranda, a tiny moon of Uranus; the weird sunrises and sunsets of Mercury; the equatorial mountain range on Iapetus; the asteroid Hektor; Herschel Crater on Mimas; the methane seas of Titan; and, of course, the fabulous geysers of Enceladus.
– phenomena nominated as candidates for sixth and seventh place in a list of wonders of the solar system.
And so they tell us that Anaxagoras answered a man who was...asking why one should choose rather to be born than not – “for the sake of viewing the heavens and the whole order of the universe.”
– from the Eudemian Ethics of Aristotle, quoted by Jonathan Glover.


Image: geysers on Enceladus. NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute via wikimedia.

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