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Solar System: 10 Things to Know This Week…Halloween Edition!

This week, we’re getting into the Halloween spirit with 10 spooktacular things to let your imagination run wild. 

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It’s not Halloween without our favorite scary characters, but what if they could stop bothering us Earthlings and go far, far away? We begin with where Dracula, Frankenstein, and other creepy creatures might choose to live if the galaxy were theirs to claim…

1. The dark (k)night.

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The prince of darkness himself, Dracula, can finally seek sweet respite from the Sun. We think he’d love to live on a rocky planet named YZ Ceti d that orbits so close to its red star that it’s tidally locked keeping one side of the planet in perpetual nighttime and the other side in perpetual daytime, with a brilliant red sky (though we can guess which side Dracula will prefer). 

2. Where art thou, werewolves? 

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Home sweet home for our furry Full Moon friends might just be on Trappist-1, a planetary system with seven planets—and where standing on one planet would mean the other planets look like six moons (some as big as our Moon in the sky). 

3. Left in the dust. 

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We couldn’t think of anyone better to live on Proxima b than The Mummy. Hopefully this ancient monster can finally rest in peace on an exoplanet that scientists theorize is a desert planet once home to ancient oceans. 

4. Cloudy with a chance of Frankenstein.

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One scientific experiment we’d like to conduct: whether Frankenstein would rather live on HAT-P-11b or Kepler-3b, theorized to have fierce thunderstorms and lightning. 

5. The walking dead. 

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We’re pretty confident that if zombies were to pick a planet, they’d want one that shares their love of death and destruction. We think they’d feel right at home on one of the pulsar planets, which are scorched by radiation because they orbit a dead star. 

6. Rest your weary bones. 

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Skeletons need look no further: Osiris, an exoplanet that’s so close to a star that it’s “losing its flesh” as the star destroys it, seems like a perfect match. 

7. Enough of the scary stuff. 

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For kids out there, turn pumpkin decorating into an out-of-this-world activity with space-themed stencils, from Saturn to the Sun. 

8. Spooky sounds. 

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Cassini’s radio emissions from Saturn could give creaky doors and howling winds a run for their money. Listen to the eerie audio recordings here and find more HERE.

9. Pumpkin-carve like a NASA engineer. 

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NASA engineers design and build robots that can fly millions of miles to study other planets for a living—so on Halloween, they can’t help but bring that creative thinking to the grand old tradition of pumpkin carving. Take a cue from their creations with these insider tips.

10. Detective for a day. 

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From blades of ice on Pluto to a fuzzy, white “bunny” photographed on Mars, become a solar system sleuth and see if you can solve the stellar mysteries in this slideshow (then compare with how scientists cracked the case). 

Make sure to follow us on Tumblr for your regular dose of space: http://nasa.tumblr.com.

Source: NASA

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Solar System: 10 Things to Know This Week…Halloween Edition!

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