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Space

Big Dipper "Star" Actually a Sextuplet System 88

Posted by kdawson
from the toil-and-trouble dept.
Theosis sends word that an astronomer at the University of Rochester and his colleagues have made the surprise discovery that Alcor, one of the brightest stars in the Big Dipper, is actually two stars; and it is apparently gravitationally bound to the four-star Mizar system, making the whole group a sextuplet. This would make the Mizar-Alcor sextuplet the second-nearest such system known. The discovery is especially surprising because Alcor is one of the most studied stars in the sky. The Mizar-Alcor system has been involved in many "firsts" in the history of astronomy: "Benedetto Castelli, Galileo's protege and collaborator, first observed with a telescope that Mizar was not a single star in 1617, and Galileo observed it a week after hearing about this from Castelli, and noted it in his notebooks... Those two stars, called Mizar A and Mizar B, together with Alcor, in 1857 became the first binary stars ever photographed through a telescope. In 1890, Mizar A was discovered to itself be a binary, being the first binary to be discovered using spectroscopy. In 1908, spectroscopy revealed that Mizar B was also a pair of stars, making the group the first-known quintuple star system."
Businesses

+ - Panasonic to Sell JVC to Kenwood

Submitted by
VE3OGG
VE3OGG writes "Not that it will effect many this holiday season, but reports are beginning to trickle in that Matsushita, one of the Japanese heavy hitters (better known as Panasonic) is looking to offload its controlling interest in the Victor Company of Japan (JVC) and that Kenwood may be the proposed buyer. It is all very hush-hush, as this has supposedly been in the works for some weeks now with both parties refusing official comment either way."
United States

+ - Disaster Planning for The Suburban Home

Submitted by herbal_rub
herbal_rub (954588) writes "With all the talk of terrorists on the loose, global warming chaos, terrorism threats, and rumors of the world's demise, Justin Oldham has written a timely piece on Defending you Suburban Castle in the event of catastrophe. Everything from stocking the right food to avoiding the attention of marauders is covered. All the stuff never covered when you ravage your town with disasters in SimCity. What are /.er's doing to prepare for the apocalypse beyond a UPS and backups?"
The Media

+ - PS3s Being Traded For Wiis

Submitted by
master0ne
master0ne writes "Jason McMaster at GigaGamez writes "So, first people camp out in front of Best Buys for days at a time to get the PS3, and then they trade them for Nintendo Wiis. Seriously. Tony Conrad, CEO and Founder of Sphere, pointed this out to us and we had to see it to believe it. There are people out there trying to trade their PS3s for Nintendo Wiis and some of them are offering to take a loss.""

If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants. -- Isaac Newton

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