Category Archives: Geology

Gliese 581g (Hámnù, Pedak, Gaustan, or Estivama)

I finished a big new map! You can purchase a print here. (Link to larger image) The world known to humankind as Zarmina (catalog identifier Gliese 581g) is a habitable planet orbiting a red dwarf star. It is tidally locked to … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Concepts, Fantasy, Geology, Maps, Science Fiction | 2 Comments

On the World Zarmina

2014 update! You can now buy prints of this map! …Preliminary report on image data from the LongShot-2 mission… The planet Gliese 581g – also known as Zarmina – is a circular world. It is not circular in the literal … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Concepts, Geology, Maps, Original fiction, Science Fiction, Space | 6 Comments

Shifts in the Bedrock

I was standing in my office, trying to deconstruct some spacecraft sensor processing algorithms on my whiteboard. I had pages of code printouts in one hand and a marker in the other. As I turned back to my computer to … Continue reading

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The Map

I have come into the possession of a most extraordinary object, which I procured rather fortuitously before the auction of goods from an insolvent boutique on the East Boulevard. I do not know how long it lay, disused and uncared-for, … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Fantasy, Geology, Maps, Oghura, Original fiction | 3 Comments

The Dark Planets

An article appeared today on about the detection of “free-floating planets.” These planets may have formed around a central star, like the planets in our Solar System did, but due to some gravitational interaction during their star system’s formation … Continue reading

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World-Building and the Real Universe

(Pardon me for the hiatus. Had to fly to Houston to do some flight testing at NASA.) I spent a pretty good weekend doing some world-building. Since discovering the maps in the first pages of The Lord of the Rings, … Continue reading

Posted in Concepts, Geology, Maps, Science, Science Fiction, Space, The Cathedral Galaxy | 10 Comments

NASA went where I’ve gone!

This year’s NASA Desert RATS exercise is taking place near Flagstaff, AZ. Here’s the view from inside one of the rovers after a traverse: RATS is a program in which NASA engineers, scientists, and astronauts take prototype equipment into remote … Continue reading

Posted in Geology, Graduate school, NASA, Photography, Science, Space, Travel | Leave a comment

The Ice Fracture Explorer

Europa, the second Galilean moon of Jupiter, has been my favorite planetary body for a long time. The reason I like Europa so much is that it’s a world whose orbital dynamics with Jupiter, its orbital resonances with the other … Continue reading

Posted in Concepts, Geology, Science, Science Fiction, Space | 15 Comments

Planetary Geology: A Detective Game

…full of unsolved yet soluble mysteries! I’m shamelessly bouncing all you readers over to the Bad Astronomy blog for this post, which is a great outline of the detective process that is planetary geology. It’s also a great illustration of … Continue reading

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Smoky Mountains Report

I spent the week of the Fourth of July with my girlfriend’s family in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, right next to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I have driven through the southeastern United States twice, but never had a chance to … Continue reading

Posted in Geology, Photography, Travel | 3 Comments