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10 votes
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Is the Earth going to evolve towards Mars' fate or Venus' fate?

If you are asking about short-term effects related to human's effect on the climate, the answer is (obviously) unclear. But in the very long term, Earth is likely to evolve to a more Venus-like state. ...
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10 votes

Is the Earth going to evolve towards Mars' fate or Venus' fate?

Either or neither. It's impossible to tell from the present. If runaway climate change occurs, then yes, the conditions on Venus could be a potential analogue for the kind of environment on Earth due ...
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7 votes
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What will be the impacts on the planets' orbits from Gliese 710?

It'll have basically no effect on the planet's orbits, except perhaps on the theoretical planet 9 and even then, not very much. As close as it's expected to get Gilese will till be too far away to ...
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6 votes
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What will the universe be like in a googolplex years time?

That is nearly long enough to reach heat-death, which is estimated as about $10^{10^{120}}$. What that means is rather speculative, since it depends on various events that we have never observed, such ...
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6 votes

Is the Earth going to evolve towards Mars' fate or Venus' fate?

This is a question that cannot be accurately answered. However, the closest to a honest and accurate answer would be that neither, since the Earth is going to "evolve" (curious choice of words) ...
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6 votes
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Winter in June in the future for North hemisphere

The book is incorrect. The calendar is designed to keep track of the seasons. What will happen in 13000 years is that the Northern Hemisphere summer solstice will still occur near the end of June, but ...
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5 votes

What are the present, and potentially the future roles of data scientists in Astronomy?

Astronomer is moving towards the big(ger) data era because of many sky survey technologies. The coming ones include, e.g., LSST, JWST, and WFIRST. By the meaning of survey, it normally means ...
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5 votes
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If an asteroid was to collide with Earth, how much warning would we have?

Asteroids come in all shapes and sizes, and generally the bigger they are the easier they are to detect. Small asteroids, from a the size of sand grains (properly called meteoroids) to a few meters ...
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5 votes
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How can we use hypervelocity stars to determine the origins of the Universe?

How can we use hypervelocity stars to determine the origins of the Universe? First and foremost, I should clear something up: our knowledge of the Big Bang is incredibly limited, and so we don't even ...
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4 votes
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In 31.5kyr, Epsilon Eridani and Luyten 726-8 will be < 1ly close; but how distant from the Solar system?

These stars are currently moving away from us, in the case of Epsilon Eridani, at 15.5 km/s. In 31500 years they will be further away than they are now, the distance can be calculated by applying ...
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3 votes

Is the Earth going to evolve towards Mars' fate or Venus' fate?

Since the Sun's temperature will continue to increase and it is estimated that in ~2 billion years it will be so hot on Earth that life will be impossible, I'd say it's going to evolve more toward ...
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3 votes

What are the present, and potentially the future roles of data scientists in Astronomy?

I'm an astronomer and I get lots of job offers to retrain as a data scientist, but it might be more tricky to go the other way. Astronomy is definitely a field in which 'big data' is important, and ...
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3 votes
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How long before Phobos reaches the Roche limit of Mars?

Sometime before now and "tens of millions of years". Phobos currently orbits at a radius of about 9400km The theoretical Roche limit is different for rigid and fluid bodies. If Phobos were ...
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3 votes
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The orbital period of Jupiter and Europa billions of years later

When the Sun becomes a red giant there will be some mass loss, making Jupiter's orbit wider and slower. The extent is fairly small during the initial expansion, but about 50% of the mass at the end. ...
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2 votes

Winter in June in the future for North hemisphere

The diagram from Astronomy magazine is correct; the book excerpt is a little confused. Winter solstice is not when the Sun appears opposite certain stars, but when the Sun appears farthest from the ...
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2 votes
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What would stargazing be like at the edge of our galaxy?

Here is a render of what an observer might see near the edge of our galaxy. The "edge" itself being rather fuzzy, let's assume that we are in an area of the edge dense enough where a few occasional ...
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