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NASA's Kitsch Horror Posters Of Exoplanets Are Halloween Treats

Just in time for Halloween, NASA has released two new horror-movie-esque posters for exoplanet HD 189733 b and zombie star PSR B1257+12, which exist outside our Solar System, so that only sophisticated telescopes could reach them. That means that no-one can hear you scream out there. 

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    photo of nasa poster for exoplanet HD 189733 b
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    Via NASA

    As part of what has become a tradition for NASA, the space research company has released two new funky posters about two extrasolar planets (which means they exist in galaxies outside of the Solar System). HD 189733 b, seen in this poster, is located about 64.5 light years away in the constellation of Vulpecula

    HD 189733 b was found when astronomers spotted the planet circling around the star HD 189733 A, and it has a mass 13% times higher than Jupiter, making it a Hot Jupiter (a class of gas giant exoplanets that are physically similar to Jupiter but have much shorter orbital periods). HD 189733 b is colored deep blue, but it has poor prospects for hosting extraterrestrial life. 

    The scientists and artists involved in the creation of these posters wanted to emphasize the unknown nature of these planets, which, being in another galaxy, would be dangerous to travel to and even more perilous to reach (if travelling outside our galaxy were possible). 

    For example, the winds on HD 189733 b can reach up to 5,400 mph - seven times the speed of sound! If travelers did make it to the exoplanet, they would get stuck whipping around "in a sickening spiral around the planet," according to NASA. That's not all. The rain would be as sharp as glass, raining sideways and slicing innocent visitors. Doesn't sound very welcoming!


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    mock sci fi NASA poster for dead star PSR B1257+12
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    Via NASA

    PSR B1257+12 is a pulsar, or a highly magnetized neutron star that rotates and emits beams of electromagnetic radiation from it's magnetic poles. It's 2300 light years away from our sun and has three exoplanets called Draugr, Poltergeist and Phobetor. The 'undead star', as NASA called it, and it's three exoplanets, are all dead. 

    In the distant past, a star in their galaxy exploded in a supernova, sending a shockwave through the galaxy that stripped away any atmosphere or living creatures, leaving three rocky, dead planets orbiting an extinct star. 

    PSR B1257+12 isn't actually dead though: the remaining core of the star rotates very quickly (literally spinning in it's grave) and sends out an intense beam of radiation that can be detected from Earth. Because of the radiation continually emitted from the star, it's three exoplanets are routinely bathed in radiation, rendering them uninhabitable. 

    If it were possible for humans to travel to this galaxy, they would get blasted by the radiation pulsing out from the undead star, and probably die a quick, but gruesome, death. Not ideal travelling conditions.  


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    nasa sci fi poster for pso j318.5-22 exoplanet
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    The rest of the posters in this article were created between 2014 - 2019 by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. They weren't originally intended to be seen by the public, but were rather a way for artists and scientists to imagine what the exoplanets might look like (as scientists didn't - and still don't - have the technology to see them). 

    The resulting posters were inspired by travel posters from the 1930's and 1940's that encouraged people to travel to national parks. Combining elements of science fiction and travel, the posters were too good to be kept from the public. 

    Whether the planets appear like nightmarish hellscapes or heavenly realms, there's an unmistakable charm to these travel posters for planets outside our galaxy. And they're perfect for Halloween. 


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    nasa mock up sci fi poster for kepler-186f exoplanet
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    nasa sci fi poster for exoplanet kepler 16b
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    nasa poster postcards greetings from your first exoplanet
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    nasa poster for exoplanet travel hd 40307g super earth
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    nasa sci fi poster for exoplanet travel enceladus
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    nasa mock horror poster for exoplanet titan
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    nasa mock horror sci fi poster for exoplanet europa
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    nasa poster for travel other planets jupiter auroras
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    nasa mock travel poster sci fi ceres
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    nasa pretend travel poster for venus
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    nasa fake travel poster sci fi planet earth your oasis in space
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    nasa modern mock sci fi poster for mars travel
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    nasa mock poster sci fi travel other planets grand tour
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    Via NASA



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