Despina is a tiny moon of Neptune. A mere 148 kilometers across, diminutive Despina was discovered in 1989, in images from the Voyager 2 spacecraft taken during its encounter with the solar system's most distant gas giant planet. But looking through the Voyager 2 data 20 years later, amateur image processor and philosophy professor Ted Stryk discovered something no one had recognized before — images that show the shadow of Despina in transit across Neptune's blue cloud tops.
Which leads us neatly onto the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in the UK, which has devised a "mini magnetosphere" that essentially recreates the protection provided by the Earth's magnetic field. The scientists have so far used the magnetosphere to protect a scale spacecraft from radiation, and they're now working on a concept spacecraft, called Discovery, with a full-scale magnetosphere that could theoretically take humans to Mars.
Studying dinosaur bones and physiology can only teach us so much about how dinosaurs actually walked the Earth. Because dinosaurs called theropods are related to modern birds, a few researchers thought they could study how they walk using chickens.
Theropods include dinosaurs like the Tyrannosaurus and Velociraptor, but they also ranged in size all the way down to tiny chicken-sized raptors covered in feathers. Theropods and modern birds also both have spongy air-filled bones, wishbones, and feathers and lay eggs and watch over them.