Peter Spinks

Peter Spinks

Peter Spinks explores the curiosities of science in his weekly column for The Age's education section. Visit his full archive of articles here.

All hail, new king of gore

Peter Spinks A new dinosaur species is possibly the oldest-known close relation of T.rex.

Sci-tech

Explosive news about Mars super-volcanoes

c

Peter Spinks The discoveries continue to shape theories about whether there was ever life on Mars.

Comments 1

Sci-tech

Exoplanets, orphans of the universe

x

Peter Spinks Once thought to be the stuff of science fiction, scientists are learning more about these mysterious rogues.

Comments 2

Space

Voyager: to boldly go ...

Artist impression of Voyager I

Peter Spinks Spacecraft such as the Voyager probes are expanding our celestial understanding.

Comments 1

Science

Tracking the first Australians

Professor Glenn Summerhayes and Mr Human Mandui.

Peter Spinks The discovery of plant fossils in Papua New Guinea is answering scientists' questions about the first Australians.

Space

Now the vexed question that divides the scientists: how big is the solar system?

Voyager 1

Peter Spinks So, it's official at last: NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft is the first man-made object to have left the solar system for the dark and mysterious realm of interstellar space.

Voyager 1 crosses the final frontier

Voyager 1

Peter Spinks NASA spacecraft is the first man-made object to have left the solar system for the dark and mysterious realm of interstellar space.

Science

Light on black holes

University of Sydney researcher Dr Sean Farrell   was part of an international team of astronomers  which observed  a star that had strayed too close to a super massive black hole being literally torn apart. It's an incredibly rare event that occurs 
once every ten thousand years per galaxy. BRIDIE SMITH STORY  AGE NEWS 8/8/2011

Peter Spinks An out-of-the-ordinary black hole could give vital clues to how galaxies form and evolve.

Comments 9

Science

In the beginning

An artist's impression of the Big Bang.

Peter Spinks Physicist Lawrence Krauss explains how everything came from nothing.

Comments 10

Space

Earth viewed from a billion miles away

Saturn's rings and our planet Earth and its moon are seen in this image taken by the wide-angle camera on NASA's Cassini spacecraft July 19, 2013. Earth, which is 898 million miles (1.44 billion km) away in this image, appears as a blue dot at center right; the moon can be seen as a fainter protrusion off its right side.   REUTERS/NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute/Handout via Reuters   (OUTER SPACE - Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY) ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR  EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

Peter Spinks From the remote vantage point of Saturn, planet Earth seems mighty small and insignificant. Yet the first interplanetary portrait to be taken in natural colour is a stark reminder of how alone and...

Comments 8

Pictures of home

View of the Earth.

Peter Spinks Smile as space probe Cassini takes a photo of Earth from almost 1.5 billion km away.

Space

Say 'cheese' for a planet-wide portrait

Say cheese, for a planet-wide portrait (Thumbnail)

Peter Spinks Between 7.27am and 7.42am tomorrow, NASA's space probe will snap the earth from 1.5 billion kilometres.

Sci-tech

New component to earthquakes found

A ship deposited on top of a building by the March 11 tsunami in Otsuchi, Iwate Prefecture, in northeastern Japan.

Peter Spinks Scientists are finding more about destructive links between earthquakes and tsunamis.

Comments 11

Sci-tech

Kept in the dark

Pulsar

Peter Spinks It seems to be omni-present yet scientists have little idea of what dark matter is.

Comments 16

Space

ET on Titan? You can't be serious

Titan

Peter Spinks Astrophysicists know full well that the biggest of Saturn's retinue of moons, Titan, is one of our solar system's most mysterious worlds.

Space

Are we alone?

x

Peter Spinks Surely, you might assume, we cannot be alone in the universe. Exoplanets are found almost weekly.

Comments 55

Space

ET enjoys the simple things in life

A car moves along the Extraterrestrial Highway near Rachel, Nevada.

Peter Spinks If life is found on other worlds, it won't be stranger than what's in our backyard.

Shake, rattle and roll

An Italian carabinieri surveys destroyed buildings after an earthquake in downtown Aquila in April 2009.

Peter Spinks A recent court case highlights the problems in trying to predict earthquakes.

Space

The lone rangers

The asteroid Vesta, photographed by the Dawn spacecraft on July 17, 2011.

Peter Spinks Legions of lost worlds roam the depths of interstellar space.

Comments 1

Sci-tech

Mysterious worlds

The Deep Space Station 43 antenna, used to communicate with the Mars Science Laboratory.

Peter Spinks The hunt for life on distant planets continues to fire imaginations.

Comments 21