Day 55 mile 55: Star Hopping

img_9252Day 55 mile 55: Star Hopping. Today’s run gets out and about with a view to looking further afield than normal. On this day in 1968 the discovery of the first Pulsar was announced to the world by Jocelyn Bell Burnell and Antony Hewish. The patch of sky it is in was almost exactly due east (and therefore not hidden by the mountains) at 6:30 this morning. While there is no hope of seeing pulsar PS B1919+21 with the naked eye it seemed like fun to go and find Vulpecula the Little Fox, Cygnus the Swan and Draco the dragon and work out where the Pulsar would be.

Due to its almost perfect regularity, PS B1919+21 was at first assumed to be spurious noise. After that, the discoverers proposed an alternative explanation that the signal might be a beacon or a communication from an intelligent extraterrestrial civilization and named it little green men 1 briefly labeling it LGM-1!

We did not really believe that we had picked up signals from another civilization, but obviously the idea had crossed our minds and we had no proof that it was an entirely natural radio emission. It is an interesting problem – if one thinks one may have detected life elsewhere in the universe[,] how does one announce the results responsibly? Who does one tell first?

Jocelyn Bell Burnell

Given the recent announcement of a new solar system it seems pretty appropriate! Wretched clouds, what we could really do with is a radio telescope…

Inspite of the weather it is still a nice jaunt out, listening to the sea recovering from its day out yesterday with (hurricane) Doris along with the smell of saturated moss and the essential oils of leaves more than halfway though the metamorphosis to mud coming through the pre-dawn air.

Thanks as ever for all the support, keep it coming it really helps!



P.S. Rob Parry (from 2 doors down) frightened the living daylights out of me sneaking up and then dashing past shouting ‘race ya’ while I was lost in thought waiting for the GPS in the dark! Rob you are a bad man and vengeance will be had….

I’m running a mile each day everyday for 2017. If you feel you can sponsor me please do, as all the money raised will go to the Cleft Lip & Palate Association (CLAPA) who provide services all across the UK to support people affected by it.

Distance: 1700.1 meters recorded

(1 mile = 1609.34 m.)
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