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Aidan Randle-Conde | Université Libre de Bruxelles | Belgium

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Physicists discover large body orbiting Earth!

After gathering a huge amount of data the physicists at the Ice Cube experiment in Antarctica have come to an inescapable and startling conclusion. There is a massive body orbiting the Earth, and the scientists can see its “shadow” in their data. They can even trace its path across the sky.

This body is called “Luno” by some scientists and it seems to be cross the sky once every 29.5 days. The mass of Luno is estimated to be quite staggering- about 1% of the mass of the Earth! Despite its large size there seems to be little danger posed by this body, It seems to be orbiting happily, showing no sign deviating from its course. Taking a look at the data once the movement of Luno is taken into account gives a striking pattern, confirming that its orbit is indeed stable over long periods of time:

The position of neutrinos in the sky respect to Luno (Ice Cube)

The position of neutrinos in the sky respect to Luno (Ice Cube) (Link to pdf)

The Ice Cube experiment is a neutrino observatory that searches for high energy neutrinos from outer space. These are thought to be given off by gamma ray bursts, neutron stars and alien TV broadcasts. (Some controversial theories also state that we can expect high energy neutrinos from malfunctioning microwave ovens and vacuum cleaners. But it would have to be some extreme form of malfunction.) As the neutrinos cosmic rays hit Luno they interact and the associated neutrinos don’t make it to Ice Cube. This is how Ice Cube see the “shadow” of Luno:

Schematic of the shadow of Luno (Ice Cube)

Schematic of the shadow of Luno (Ice Cube) (Link to pdf)

Other observations of Luno

This is not the first time that a particle physics experiment has speculated about a massive extra terrestrial body. The experiments at LEP postulated the existence of a massive body outside the Earth that changed their centre of mass energies. The assumptions went as far as to say that Luno was responsible for huge tidal forces that changed the shape of the Earth subtly around LEP. Then again, the LEP experiments were also sensitive to the TGV train timetables and meetings of the CERN Yoga Club.

Scientists at NASA have been studying Luno and they have come to some interesting conclusions. The most striking prediction is that Luno should be visible to the naked eye. Luno should reflect electromagnetic radiation from the sun, making it particularly visible at night. It is also thought that Luno is largely responsible for the tides we see in the seas and oceans across the world, a phenomenon which had been a mystery for centuries. Luno could even block the line of sight between the sun and the Earth, causing nightfall for a brief period of time. This could cause panic for people from scientifically illiterate cultures, nocturnal animals and biochemists. After much study there have been a number of artist’s impressions to help with identification of Luno:

Artist's impression of Luno to aid identification (NASA)

Artist's impression of Luno to aid identification (NASA)

Ancient prophecy

Although Ice Cube has only discovered Luno recently, there are several examples of prophecy of Luno in various forms. Several ancient civilizations drew pictograms that represented Luno in some way with some examples, such as the Tarot deck, surviving to the present day. Some cultures even had a Luno deity, such as Khonsu of the ancient Egyptians. His pictogram includes a large figure, which carries Luno. Given the size of Luno, we should be able to see the large figure as well, but all searches have been fruitless. Some people think that this figure may be even harder to find than SUSY, or even extra dimensions (outside of the Terry Pratchett universe.)

Khonsu (discovered portions shown in gray) (Wikipedia)

Khonsu (discovered portions shown in gray) (Wikipedia)

Whatever Luno is, it should be heralded as one of the greatest discoveries of 2012, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it won the Nobel Prize!

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16 Responses to “Physicists discover large body orbiting Earth!”

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  2. Daniel Cohen says:

    Great article!
    My reading of the Egyptian hieroglyphs told me, too, that the ancients suspected the something was there. It’s been difficult for modern space exploration to prove that some kind of massive particle is up there, so it’s good progress to finally identify it.

    Now I would like to take this idea one step further: I predict that there’s another particle, located somewhere in a different direction from the new Luno. I predict that you’ll find it where it reduces the flux of electromagnetic radiation from the universe at large. It will also affect the tides.

    I love living in our modern era of scientific discovery. So many brave scientists, working out so many exciting facts! Congratulations to all you thousands of seekers and finders.

  3. April says:

    I thought that neutrinos could penetrate a light-year of lead. How can Luno stop them? Is it made of some unusual substance, perhaps green cheese, with a high neutrino cross section?

  4. Mike DuVernois says:

    It’s not actually neutrinos being stopped by the Luno, but rather cosmic rays that would otherwise interact in the Earth’s atmosphere and generate atmospheric showers of charged particles and neutrinos.

    • Oops, sorry about that! I had spellcheck turned on but sanitycheck turned off for this post. It’s fixed now, thanks for spotting it. (By the way, Ice Cube seeing the shadow of the Luno is the coolest physics phenomenon I’ve heard about in a long time!)

  5. Mike DuVernois says:

    Though of course a serious answer on a day like today is always suspect…

  6. felix anthony says:

    April Fool’s Day prank???

  7. Frank Cross says:

    …….sigh………..

  8. sooszq says:

    Nice article on April Fools Day! Good gag guys.

  9. pieman says:

    happy april fools day!

  10. JimHill says:

    nice.

  11. Simon says:

    More conclusive evidence that scientists should step away from their experiments more often and so thinks like looking up. :D

  12. Carlo says:

    I’ve been as stupid as googling the news… seeing no sign of it, I understood :-)

  13. marvin nubwaxer says:

    funny that a google search yields no results for this phenomenon.

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