Andy Lloyd's

Dark Star Blog 2009


New Scientist asks: Is there a Planet X?


Serious scientists are once again opening the doors on the possibility of a Planet X object hiding out there, beyond Neptune:

"Any new object would have to be well clear of the Kuiper belt to qualify as a planet. Yet intriguingly, it is studies of the belt that have suggested the planet's existence [Planet X]. Some KBOs travel in extremely elongated orbits around the sun. Others have steep orbits almost at right angles to the orbits of all the major planets. "Those could be signs of perturbation from a massive distant object," says Robert Jedicke, a solar system scientist at the University of Hawaii.


"That is by no means a general consensus. An early, slow outward migration of the giant planets could also explain some of these strange KBO orbits - although it has difficulty explaining all of the belt's observed properties.

"Over the past 20 years, huge swaths of the sky have been searched for slowly moving bodies, and well over 1000 KBOs found. But these wide-area surveys can spot only large, bright objects; longer-exposure surveys that can find smaller, dimmer objects cover only small areas of the sky. A Mars-sized object at a distance of, say, 100 AU would be so faint that it could easily have escaped detection."

Planet X has been a non-subject for such a long time within astronomical circles.  Indirect evidence for it has been vehemently challenged in the last few decades.  But I sense that this rear-guard action is softening.  Can it be that the evidence is painting an ever-clearer picture that scientists can no longer ignore?


Written by Andy Lloyd, 1st February 2009


Govert Schilling "Is there a Planet X?" 31 January 2009, with thanks to Lee article


Planet X Conference, Rome 2009


I had a great time at 'The Return of Planet X' conference in Rome during the weekend of 7th-8th February 2009. 


I've put together a blog, complete with photos, all about the event and the hair-raising events leading up to it:

Andy's review Roma Planet X Conference 2009


NASA announce there is (probably) life on Mars


I heard on the BBC news this morning that NASA will announce today that they have discovered smoking gun evidence for the existence of life on the red planet. A thin layer of methane has been discovered in the light Martian evidence.  Methane is a chemical that, in nature, is derived exclusively from biological processes.  It cannot be in the Martian atmosphere solely as a result of geochemical or meteorological conditions. Therefore, the find heralds the existence of life on Mars.


What form does that life take? Most likely very simple microbial life known as 'extremophiles', which are capable of handling the freezing cold conditions on the planet.  It was thought that such life might only be found below the surface of Mars, but recent discoveries have raised the possibility that water has moved across the Martian surface in the relatively recent past.  So it is plausible that the Martian life might be nearer to the surface of the planet than originally anticipated.

The finding, if proven, would be a great step forward for those of us who advocate that life is as routine a feature of the galaxy as stars and planets.  Whether life emerges as a natural event all over the universe, or is widely spread by comets (panspermia) once it takes hold, it is everywhere....  

Well, the announcement did go ahead, but in typical NASA style, they sat on the fence.  Indicating that there may have been a subterranean volcanic source for the methane in the atmosphere, they did not offer the conclusion expected by many commentators - that methane indicated life.  But that is surely what it does mean.  NASA seem to be struggling with this fairly simple concept.  What is unclear is ... why?  This extract from the Financial Times (16 January 2009, p6) neatly summarises the likely source of the methane:

"The most interesting possibility is that Mars harbours "deep bio-communities" that use hydrogen as an energy source and emit methane, similar to those found 2-3 km below ground in the Witwatersrand basin of South Africa.  They could have been isolated for millions of years from the inhospitable conditions on the planet's surface."

Just to add fuel to this puzzling fire, now there's this little gem:


Water dripping on Mars...DRIPPING, Nasa!....Hello!!


The impossible has become possible...water on Mars. How??? The only real conclusion - our consensus understanding of the surface environment of Mars is wrong. Plain wrong. This remarkable 3 minute bulletin on BBC radio news is simply astounding:

"A series of photographs taken by NASA's Phoenix Lander show what look like water droplets clinging to one of its landing struts, which may have splashed up when the spacecraft landed on Mars. Science correspondent Tom Fielden explains the implications of finding water on the red planet."


Written by Andy Lloyd, 14th March 2009


BBC Radio 4, Today " Has water been found on Mars?" 18 March 2009 today news



Roman Antiquities 2


Roman Antiquities 2


A new article by Andy Lloyd brings together Nibiru symbolism from the early centuries A.D.


Evidence of Shattered World


It was not long ago since a meteorite sample from Antarctica provided controversial proof of bacterial development on Mars.  Now, scientists are grappling with the possibility that another couple of meteorites found on the frozen continent might have been fragments from a shattered world.  They contain feldspar, which must have formed within a substantial dwarf planet, now gone.  A high concentration of sodium also hints at the possibility of a large presence of water on this dwarf world, which formed along with the other planets some 4.5 billion years ago. 

The question is - what happened to this world?  Was it part of a body that played a pivotal role in the Celestial Battle of Mesopotamian myth?  If nothing else, it is a helpful reminder of the violence of the early solar system.


Written by Andy Lloyd, 14th March 2009



David Shiga, "Meteorites may be remnants of destroyed dwarf planet", 13 March 2009 with thanks to Lee article


Hunt for remnants of lost planet in solar system


Scientists, who are trying to determine whether the Moon formed after a collision between the early Earth and a Mars-sized planet which subsequently disintegrated, are searching the Earth's LaGrangian points for tell-tale signs of its prior existence.  Assuming that such a planet once neighboured the Earth in one of these stable zones, they are using the STEREO spacecraft to search for small asteroids. 

""Their computer models show that Theia could have grown large enough to produce the Moon if it formed in the L4 or L5 regions, where the balance of forces allowed enough material to accumulate," says Kaiser. "Later, Theia would have been nudged out of L4 or L5 by the increasing gravity of other developing planets like Venus and sent on a collision course with Earth."

"If this idea is correct, Theia itself is long gone, but some of the ancient planetesimals that failed to join Theia may still be lingering at L4 or L5.
"The STEREO probes are entering these regions of space now," says Kaiser. "This puts us in a good position to search for Theia's asteroid-sized leftovers."
Just call them "Theiasteroids.""

Their thinking may or may not be correct about the prior location of their so-called 'Theia' planet.  There are other possibilities as well - the Planet X scenario being one of them, of course.  But the search indicates the need for such a 'missing' planet to explain the anomaly of our Moon.


It also highlights the importance of the LaGrangian points.  Every planet has these area in its orbital vicinities.  Jupiter's LaGrangian points are famously host to clusters of asteroids known as Trojans.  If there is a large Planet X body, or Dark Star, then it too will have such zones which would be potentially stable areas for comet clusters.  Think about the massive extent of the orbit of Nibiru, or the Dark Star.  The L3, L4 and L5 points would make good areas for comets, which might pass through or near to the inner solar system when the parent body is very remote.  In the case of L3, Nibiru, or the Dark Star, could be at its furthest point from us when such a cluster along its orbital path pays us a visit.  Food for thought.


Written by Andy Lloyd, 14th March 2009



1)  "STEREO Hunts for Remains of an Ancient Planet near Earth" 9 April 2009, with thanks to Lloyd Pye article



Habitable Planets around Dwarf Stars


There have been a couple of interesting articles recently about whether life could exist on planets orbiting red dwarf stars.  These small stars are common, but have been traditionally left out of the debate about life on extrasolar planets.  But more recently, planetary scientists have reconsidered this prior prejudice. 


Red dwarfs are much larger than the Dark Star object I discuss, which is more like the planet Jupiter.  Nevertheless, some of the considerations are interesting, and valid for both cases.  In particular, whether tidally-locked planets around parent dwarf stars could have reasonable atmospheres (1). 

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech


Another point raised by NASA is that data from protoplanetary disks around red and brown dwarfs shows a lack of hydrogen cyanide, which might be a problem for the evolution of life in such systems:

"Observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope hint that planets around cool stars -- the so-called M-dwarfs and brown dwarfs that are widespread throughout our galaxy -- might possess a different mix of life-forming, or prebiotic, chemicals than our young Earth.  Life on our planet is thought to have arisen out of a pond-scum-like mix of chemicals. Some of these chemicals are thought to have come from a planet-forming disk of gas and dust that swirled around our young sun. Meteorites carrying the chemicals might have crash-landed on Earth.

"Astronomers don't know if these same life-generating processes are taking place around stars that are cooler than our sun, but the Spitzer observations show their disk chemistry is different. Spitzer detected a prebiotic molecule, called hydrogen cyanide, in the disks around yellow stars like our sun, but found none around cooler, less massive, reddish stars. Hydrogen cyanide is a carbon-containing, or organic compound. Five hydrogen cyanide molecules can join up to make adenine -- a chemical element of the DNA molecule found in all living organisms on Earth."

Also of interest is the need for a magnetic field on the candidate habitable world, which is a function of its spin and size (1). 


Written by Andy Lloyd, 11th April 2009



1) Michael Schirber "Can Life Thrive Around a Red Dwarf Star?" Astrobiology Magazine, 9 April 2009, with thanks to Brian, Pat and David article

2) Paul Gilster "Prospects for Red Dwarf 'Earths'" 17 March 2009, with thanks to David

centauri-dreams article

3) Whitney Clavin, NASA JPL press release "Cool Stars Have Different Mix of Life-Forming Chemicals" 7 April 2009, with thanks to Monika news



Brown Dwarf Discoveries


There has been a rash of discoveries about small failed stars this week.  Some very young (and therefore still hot) sub-brown dwarfs have been found.

""Finding three candidate low-mass dwarfs towards IC 348 backs up predictions for how many low-mass objects develop in a new population of stars. Brown dwarfs cool with age and current models estimate that their surfaces are approximately 900-1000 degrees Kelvin (about 600-700 degrees Celsius).
That's extremely cool for objects that have just formed, which implies that they have the lowest masses of any of this type of object that we've seen to date,""

Their mass is in the region of what I expect for our binary Dark Star, although their youth makes them an awful lot more active as they have not yet used up their fuel. 



They are not bound to parent stars, but have formed within stellar nurseries alongside more traditional suns.  Another recent discovery is of a binary object which is very cool by failed star standards.  At just 300 degrees Celsius, Wolf 940B is clearly an old brown dwarf, weighing in at between 20 and 30 Jupiter masses (2). 

The size and warmth of these discovered objects is dropping as detection methods improve.  But they remain difficult to find, and old objects of the order of ten Jupiter masses remain beyond current limits.  But it is only a matter of time.  Crucially, brown dwarfs are popping up despite their difficulty to be spotted, and this may show that they are far more abundant than has been thought, which may mean that scientists need to revisit their theories of star formation (3).


Written by Andy Lloyd, 24th April 2009



1) "Astronomers Discover Youngest And Lowest Mass Dwarfs" 22 April 2009, With thanks to David report

2) Anna Salleh "Coolest brown dwarf in universe found" 20 April 2009, With thank to David article

3) New Scientist "'Failed stars' may be common in our galaxy" 19 April 2009,  With thanks to David article



The Late, Great Bombardment


Many of my readers will be familiar with my description of the late, great bombardment.  After the formation of the solar system, there was a volatile period involving planets crashing about, and at some point very early in the system's history Earth took a hit from a Mars-sized body. This incredible impact eventually led to the formation of the Moon. 


Things quietened down considerably, until a point when the Sun was over 600 million years old.   Then a new series of high impact events caused mayhem in the inner solar system.  This event, some 3.9 billion years ago, was the Late, Great Bombardment.  What created these catastrophes?  Astronomers don't know.  I have proposed that this is the point when the 'Celestial Battle' took place - the advent and close approach of the Dark Star binary companion and its system of planets.

Whether my explanation is correct or not, the catastrophe was certainly real enough.  Scientists working on this mysterious period of cataclysm have now found that life might have survived the multiple asteroid impacts, which would help with the modelling of the emergence of life on this planet.  The extent of the damage to Earth is also consistent with the damage sustained by 'Tiamat' as described by Sitchin:

Geologic evidence suggests that life on Earth was present at least 3.83 billion years ago, said Mojzsis. “So it is not unreasonable to suggest there was life on Earth before 3.9 billion years ago. We know from the geochemical record that our planet was eminently habitable by that time, and this new study sews up a major problem in origins of life studies by sweeping away the necessity for multiple origins of life on Earth.” 

Most scientists believe a rogue plan et as large as Mars smacked Earth with a glancing blow 4.5 billion years ago, vaporizing it self and part of Earth. The collision would have created an immense vapor cloud from which moonlets, and later our moon, coalesced, Mojzsis said. “That event, which preceded the Late Heavy Bombardment by at least 500 million years, would have effectively hit Earth’s re-set button,” he said. 

“But our results strongly suggest that no events since the moon formation were capable of destroying Earth’s crust and wiping out any biosphere that was present,” Mojzsis said. “In stead of chopping down the tree of life, our view is that the bombardment pruned it.”


Written by Andy Lloyd, 25th May 2009



"Early cells might have thrived amid asteroid pummeling" 20 May 2009, article no longer available, but see: article



Scientific American catches Dark Star Fever


Scientific American are leading with this brown dwarf planetary systems article, and accompanying image on the front of their June 2009 magazine which looks an awful lot like the cover of 'Dark Star'!  It's not just the cover either - 'Scientific American' speculates about the possibility of habitable planets existing around brown dwarfs, and mentions the potential for such objects to lie hidden between us and the nearest star.  Which is exactly what I've been advocating for some years.

Scientific American "Unlikely Suns Reveal Improbable Planets - Astronomers are finding planets where there were not supposed to be any." June 2009, with thanks to David article




Dark Matter Dark Stars

On occasion people write to me advocating the possibility that a brown dwarf binary companion might be be constructed by 'electric fields' or plasma.  I generally reply that the Dark Star theory does not require a new theory of physics to work.  A sub brown dwarf built of regular elements would do nicely.  However, there is one intriguing possibility from new physics that might also fit.  Could a Dark Star binary companion be made up of 'dark matter'?  Dark matter is still largely theoretical, but its presence is required to explain the missing mass of the universe.  Given the quantity of mass missing, is seems likely that it clumps into Dark Stars.  It would also make sense that there are a huge number of low mass stars rather than extremely massive Dark Matter Stars which might be bending light, and creating other more noticeable effects.  So such a notion would fit with a multitude of missing low mass companions located at the peripheries of stellar systems.

Here's a piece from 2007 sent to me by my astronomer friend Mattia which puts just such a possibility across:

"Before stars were fueled by nuclear fusion, they may have been fueled by dark matter. Researchers have theorized that "Dark Stars" may have been supported by the huge release of energy from dark matter annihilation (i.e. the release of energy that comes when matter and antimatter encounter each other) in the early universe. The physicists from UC Santa Cruz, UM Ann Arbor, and the University of Utah believe that despite many theories stating otherwise, dark matter did have an effect on the first stars in the universe.

"The release of energy from dark matter/anti-dark matter annihilation may have prevented the first proto-stars from collapsing and beginning fusion, but in turn could have heated a star¿s core enough to support it. This would change the time scale of the formation of second generation stars, the appearance of elements like nitrogen, carbon, and oxygen in our universe, and other aspects of stellar evolution.

"Products of the annihilation, such as neutrinos, gamma-rays, or antimatter may make these dark stars or their remnants detectable. Although stars composed of dark matter are likely to be much dimmer than normal stars, they may produce some light. The next step for researchers will be to determine how much visible light the dark stars give off, and how long they survive. Dark stars may have died out millions of years ago, or they may still exist today.

"The idea of dark stars relies on the Lightest Super symmetric Particle (LSP), a highly favored candidate for particles that make up dark matter. The properties of the LSPs are consistent with current information about dark matter in the universe. Many physicists are hopeful that new experiments in particle colliders will soon yield more discoveries on the nature of dark matter, and perhaps offer insight into the possibility of dark stars in the early universe."


Written by Andy Lloyd, 25th June 2009



Douglas Spolyar, Katherine Freese, and Paolo Gondolo "Dark Matter and the First Stars: A New Phase of Stellar Evolution" Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 051101, 4 February 2008, with thanks to Mattia abstract


The Asteroid Belt's Twin Origin

Planet X researcher Shad Bolling recently sent me a piece about the complex origin of the asteroid belt.  Apparently, scientists are trying to figure out why asteroids from the outer asteroid belt vary significantly in composition from those in the inner asteroid belt. 


Water ices, and heated processes demark the two types of asteroid studied by planetary scientists.  Writing in the journal 'Nature', Harold Levison of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado, advocates the 'Nice Model' to explain how these, and other anomalies came about.  The summary from makes for fascinating reading:

"The Nice model is "a model for the dynamical evolution for the orbits of the giant planets that we believe was a very violent event that happened roughly 700 million years after the solar system formed," when the solar system was in "its teenage years," Levison explained.  Models haven't been able to reproduce the formation of Uranus and Neptune in their current orbits, so Levison and other astronomers think that they formed much closer to Jupiter and Saturn, so that all the gas giants initially sat within 15 AU of the sun. (One AU, or astronomical unit, is the mean distance between Earth and the sun, about 93 million miles. Jupiter currently has a mean distance of 5.2 AU from the sun.)

We think [the gas giant planets] formed in a much more compact configuration than what we currently see," Levison said.   A protoplanetary disk of planetesimals stretched from just beyond that 15 AU boundary to about 30 AU, the thinking goes.  While this configuration was initially stable, objects leaking out from the disk caused slow changes in the orbits of the gas giants.

According to the model, about 700 million years after the solar system formed, these changes resulted in Jupiter and Saturn hitting a resonance with each other that caused the orbits of Uranus and Neptune to destabilize. The latter two planets gravitationally scattered off each other towards Jupiter and Saturn, which pushed back, sending their smaller siblings out to their current orbits.  Like a bowling ball hitting a set of pins, Uranus and Neptune plowed into the outer protoplanetary disk, whose objects "got scattered all over the solar system". (1)

This model might help to explain the late, great bombardment, and the bizarre distribution of Kuiper Belt Objects. The Nice model is gaining acceptance in the astronomical community, with its talk of migrating gas giants, even though it sounds like an unlikely game of planetary billiards.

The anomalies that the Nice model sets out to explain also offer rich pickings for Planet X advocates.  The catastrophic element to this period of solar system evolution is self-explanatory.  Add to that the dual nature of the asteroid belt, and one can piece together events that involve the catastrophic interloping of a usurper planet.  One wonders whether any of the academic researchers who crunch the numbers in their super-computers have also created models from this scenario as well?  Given the anomalous evidence for an as yet undiscovered massive planet beyond Neptune, it should surely be a good bet!


Written by Andy Lloyd, 16th July 2009



(1) Andrea Thompson "Migrating Planets May Have Kicked Asteroids Into Orbit" 15th July 2009, with thanks to Shad Bolling article



Telescopes pick out secret spy satellite

Lloyd Pye sent me an article describing how a secret satellite deployment was tracked by amateur astronomy sleuths.  He noted how close this was to the storyline in Ezekiel One.  Indeed!


Justin Ray "Clues about mystery payload emerge soon after launch" 8 September 2009 article


Is this Nibiru?

The image is authentic, but what is it of? And where did this information come from?  Visit my new webpage for details:

Nibiru? Candidate object from IRAS database



The LCROSS Mystery


An essential next step is to establish whether the isotopic ratio for that Moon-water is more like a planetary object beyond Mars than one at Earth's current location.  The answer to that question would surely have been solved by the planned impacts of two parts of the LCROSS spacecraft into the lunar surface.  NASA expected a plume of dust and rock to result from the 5,600 mph collision, but there was no obvious sign of any plume from either collision (7).  However, closer scientific analysis eventually provided exciting news about ice on the Moon:


NASA confirms a "significant amount" of frozen water


Ice in large quantities on the Moon has been confirmed by NASA as a result of the LCROSS mission:

"A 'significant amount' of frozen water has been found on the moon, the U.S. space agency NASA said Friday, boosting hopes of eventually setting up a permanent lunar base. Preliminary data from a moon probe "indicates the mission successfully uncovered water in a permanently shadowed lunar crater," NASA said.  "The discovery opens a new chapter in our understanding of the moon," it added in a statement. The data was found after NASA sent two spacecraft crashing into the lunar surface last month in a dramatic experiment to probe for water. One rocket slammed into the Cabeus crater, near the moon's southern pole, at around 5,600 miles (9,000 kilometers) per hour. It was followed four minutes later by a spacecraft equipped with cameras to record the impact." (8)

Robert Massey of the Royal Astronomical Society speculated that the 'frozen water' was brought to the surface of the Moon by comet impacts. (9) The large debris plume rose at least one or two kilometres in altitude. It stayed just below the crater rim, which may have prevented astronomers from observing it from Earth. (10) Lee Covino, one of my editors, has a keen interest in data about water sources in the solar system. He and I agree that the returning data from comets and asteroid exploration in recent years has consistently pointed to anomalies which can be explained by planetary migration and catastrophism in the early solar system, involving a Planet X entity.  He points out that the NASA press release about the LCROSS findings hint at the prevalence of other volatile materials in the Cabeus crater.  Here are the excerpts themselves:

  • "In addition, water, and other compounds represent potential resources that could sustain future lunar exploration."

  • "The concentration and distribution of water and other substances requires further analysis, but it is safe to say Cabeus holds water."

  • "The LCROSS science team along with colleagues are poring over the data to understand the entire impact event, from flash to crater, with the final goal being the understanding of the distribution of materials, and in particular volatiles, within the soil at the impact site."

  • "Along with the water in Cabeus, there are hints of other intriguing substances." (11)

If water was deposited by comets, then there might also be present on the surface of the Moon organic material from the same source.  Given that the water ice is held within the lunar soil, then it seems reasonable to suppose that comet-sources organic material and volatiles might also be prevalent within the lunar soils.  Such a discovery would be even more profound than the confirmation of frozen water. The building blocks of life could be present within lunar soil, brought to the Moon over billions of years by comets.

All of which begs the question - why was this not realised when the lunar rocks, returned to Earth by Apollo, were analysed decades ago?  It's perhaps forgivable to mistake water in the lunar soil samples for contamination.  Would missing the presence of organic compounds on the Moon be an omission too far?


Written by Andy Lloyd, 25th September 2009 - 13th November 2009



1) Claire Bates  "'Now they find water on Mars: Meteorites uncover ice which could point to life" 27 September 2009 article

2) Lunar Prospector Data Maps Database

3) The Los Alamos Built Spectrometers Database

4) Lunar Prospector Reduced Spectrometer Data article

5) BBC Radio 4 News, 10pm 24/9/09

6)  Andy Lloyd, 'The Dark Star -The Planet X Evidence', Timeless Voyager Press 2005, see also

7) Ian Sample "Moon Crash Landing Fails to Raise Dust" The Guardian, 10/10/09, p5

8) NASA "LCROSS finds frozen water on the moon" 13 September 2009 science-news

9)  'P.M.', BBC Radio 4, 13/11/09

10) Jonathan Amos "'Significant' water found on Moon" 13 November 2009, includes a video clip of the LCROSS impact article

11)  Jonas Dino, 'LCROSS Impact Data Indicates Water on Moon' 13 September 2009, with thanks to Lee article



Water Anomalies on the Moon - the implications


NASA's data about Moon rock composition over the last 40 years has been very consistent.  The non-polar regions of the Moon are dry, desiccated, dead.  Until yesterday.  NASA announced that data from the Indian Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbitor indicates that there is a relative abundance of lunar water - even in areas exposed to the Sun's rays.  At 750 parts per million, a ton of lunar rock would yield about a litre of water (1).  Helpful for future missions.

But, how on earth did NASA get this so wrong for the last 40 years? The Apollo astronauts brought back piles of Moon rocks, many of which were analysed for water.  Traces were found at the time, but NASA claimed that "most of the boxes containing the lunar samples leaked which led scientists to assume traces of water found came from Earth air that had entered the containers".  750ppm is not a trace. And how about the boxes which did not leak?  What of the water composition in them?


Then there are the NASA probes in the late 1990s,which deliberately set out to discover water on the Moon.  They found frozen water in deep polar craters.  But Clementine, and particularly Prospector, were set up with spectrometers capable of detecting water across the surface.  How did they miss it?  They certainly shouldn't have!  Here's the Mission guidelines for Prospector's spectrometers:

"Lunar Prospector (LP), which was launched on January 6, 1998, carries an integrated suite of three spectrometers. A Gamma-Ray Spectrometer (GRS) and a Neutron Spectrometer (NS) are providing global maps of the major and trace elemental composition of the lunar surface, with special emphasis on the search for polar water-ice deposits, implied by the H abundance...Global mapping of elemental abundances by the LP GRS and NS will impose major new constraints on the bulk composition of the lunar crust, on compositional variations over the lunar surface, and on the existence of lunar resources including polar water ice" (2)  [my emphasis]

The map opposite shows Prospector data from 1998 (3), which has still not been properly peer-reviewed over ten years on, according to the PDS website (4).  The equatorial map indicates that a fairly detailed, surface wide analysis was undertaken.  So - it begs the question:  Why is the Indian data (and also Deep Impact data, we learn) so radically different?  How is it that 40 years of scientific opinion about Moon soil and rock composition has been so fundamentally overturned?  Did God just pee on the Moon?  Or is there something fundamentally wrong with the data that NASA has been making public for the last 40 years?  The BBC news report about the discovery heard that NASA scientists were 'very sceptical' about the Indian finding at first, simply because it so comprehensively overturned their previously held beliefs about water on the Moon (5).

It beggars belief that two American probes sent to comprehensively survey the Moon just a decade ago could have come up with the wrong data - wrong data that is consistent with a scientific belief about the composition of Moon rock dating back to the 1960s.  Are we to believe that in the last decade the Indians have made a quantum leap forward in technology above and beyond NASA and the U.S. Department of Defense (which controlled Clementine)? I don't think so.

Notwithstanding that puzzling aspect of this story, there are other implications for the discovery.  Water is common throughout the solar system, it appears.  According to theories of planetary formation in the early solar system, inner worlds tend to have their water veneers driven off by the strong solar wind of the young vibrant Sun.  This is why Mercury and Venus are dry, and also why the Moon is supposed to be a desiccated shell.  Yet, now it is clear that the Moon is not that dry at all.  If the Moon was formed by an early collision between the early Earth and a Mars-sized planet, as is currently accepted, then why does the Moon have this water? It should have been driven off long ago.  NASA argues that this water 'comes and goes' with the long lunar day - and therefore is part of a continuing chemical process activated by the Sun's rays.

We return to the great water conundrum that features prominently in my book 'The Dark Star' (6).  Isotopic studies of solar system water are essential to understand the point of origin of any given water bearing object, as the ratio changes with distance from the Sun, roughly. This is complicated by collisions with comets which bring water from the outer solar system. The Earth is a puzzle in this regard, and I have suggested that this puzzle is best solved by the recognition that Earth began at a more distant orbital point, and then migrated in to its current position, perhaps due to a collision.  That the Moon still holds quantities of water in its surface soil and rocks strengthens that point.


Water on Mars


A crater in the equatorial region of Mars has been found to contain exposed surface ice. That ice appears to be part of an extensive ice sheet which extends well beyond the polar regions of Mars.  The crater was caused by a recent meteor, and the exposed ice was eventually covered again by Martian surface dust.


So, it's now established that vast sections of Mars are ice sheets covered in regolith dust. The ice below the surface is exposed by meteorite impacts, then quickly covered again by the prevailing dust storms on the red planet.  I wonder whether the extent of the ice below the surface might be even greater still. Perhaps Mars is more like one of the Gallilean moons of Jupiter. Perhaps not as obviously ocean-friendly as Europa, but more like Callisto and Ganymede?  In those cases frozen sub-surface ice is gently warmed by the proximity to Jupiter (the same scenario for a warmed habitable world orbiting a Dark Star).  Mars does not have such a massive companion to warm the sub-surface ice into an ocean. is large enough to have volcanic activity, as the considerable calderas on Mars indicate.

Surface features on Mars tend to bat down the idea of active recent vulcanism, because there are large swathes of ancient craters which should have been filled in long ago under that scenario.  But it certainly seems to be reasonable to paint a picture of subsurface ice sheets covering Martian oceans warmed by underground geothermal activity.  Meteorite impacts crunching through the surface ice and releasing underground water might explain some of the Martian anomalies of dried riverbeds.  If the meteorite that uncovered the ice in this case had been bigger, we might have witnessed just such an effect!


It seems increasingly likely that oceans covered much the of the low-lying surface of the Northern hemisphere of Mars: 

"Computerised analysis of satellite data shows that some regions of Mars had valley networks almost as dense as those on Earth. 'It is now difficult to argue against run-off erosion as the major mechanism of Martian valley networks,' said research leader Professor Wei Luo, from Northern Illinois University. The belt pattern of the valley network could best be explained if there was a large northern ocean, said the scientists writing in the Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets." (3)

That water had to end up somewhere.  Could it be that Mars more closely resembles one of the Galilean moons, with very significant quantities of deep sub-surface water ice?


Written by Andy Lloyd, 26th September 2009


1)  Claire Bates "Now they find water on Mars: Meteorites uncover ice which could point to life" The Daily Mail, 25 September 2009, with thanks to Mart

2)  Andrea Thompson, "Water Ice Exposed in Mars Craters" 24 Sept. 2009, with thanks to David article

3) The Daily Mail "The Red Planet was once blue... Giant ocean once covered third of Mars"  23 November 2009 article




WISE to Hunt for Dark Star says JPL


The new Infra-red sky survey telescope is scheduled for launch in mid December (1).  It's called WISE, and it is a modern and more powerful version of IRAS.  It has the capability of locating numerous brown dwarfs hidden in the constellations.  I've been saying for a long time that WISE is by far the best hope of finding the Dark Star - a sub-brown dwarf object orbiting the Sun at a great distance.  Now, as WISE launches, a spokesman from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory has confirmed that looking for a distant Dark Star is actually part of the project's remit:

"Excitingly, [WISE] may also find a theoretical ninth planet in our own solar system (since Pluto is no longer counted as a planet, there are currently only eight). The patterns of comet orbits around our sun suggests that there may be a huge gas giant planet, about 25,000 times as far from the Sun as the Earth is, as yet undetected.
"The WISE telescope could spot a Jupiter-sized planet as far as 60,000 Earth-to-Sun-distances (called astronomical units, or A.U.s) from the Sun, according to one of the scientists behind it, Peter Eisenhardt of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, and it will be actively looking for the distant giant."

The idea of a Dark Star was first put forward by Richard Muller et al when they proposed a distant object that they named 'Nemesis' (3).  Lying at the very periphery of the solar system, among the distant comets in the outer Oort cloud, Nemesis was thought to be responsible for an observed extinction cycle in the fossil record.  A decade ago, I proposed that this object was located closer than the astronomers thought - between the Kuiper Belt and the inner Oort Cloud.  Because I don't believe that this object is responsible for an extinction cycle, I prefer to give it the title 'Dark Star'. 


My hypothesis is that such an object is capable of providing a habitable environment on a moon/planet in its own planetary system, and thus life, which may be complex - even intelligent (4).  This more positive idea is not in keeping with the moniker 'Nemesis'.  I also believe that this object plays a part in ancient mythology.  Its proximity and irregular orbit may mean that it is occasionally seen from Earth during rare perihelion events.

Will WISE discovery this Dark Star?  If so, will it be found in the outer Oort Cloud as suggested by Muller? Or will it be found much closer, sweeping out the empty area beyond the Kuiper Gap, as I have suggested?  If WISE does its job, we will find out in the next couple of years.  We are living in exciting times!


Written by Andy Lloyd, 29th November 2009



1), with thanks to Craig

2)  Tom Chivers "Nasa's Wise telescope to find brown dwarf neighbours and distant planets" 27 November 2009, with thanks to David news

3) Richard Muller "Nemesis: The Death Star" Weidenfeld & Nicholson 1988

4) Andy Lloyd 'The Dark Star: The Planet X Evidence' Timeless Voyager Press 2005

'The Dark Star: The Planet X Evidence'



Strange meteorites from unknown asteroid/dwarf planet


Here's a new mystery to consider. Two meteorites, known as GRA 06128 and GRA 06129, were discovered in the Graves-Nunataks region of Antarctica in 2006 (1).  They are unlike any other meteorites.  They date almost back as far as the birth of the solar system, some 4.5 billion years ago. 



Scientists are puzzled by them because they appear to have come from a sizeable object that is large enough to retain its own heat and so undergo internal melting.  This process, common to planets and moons, causes a differentiation of the rocks and chemical composition of the body.  The mysterious body is likely to be at least 200 km in diameter, which rules out the vast majority of asteroids.

Here are some of the puzzling aspects of the case:  "Although initial oxygen isotopic compositions are consistent with an origin in the Earth-Moon system, numerous observations appear to eliminate both bodies,"  says Chip Shearer of the University of New Mexico (2).  So the meteorites originate from beyond the Earth-Moon system.  Additionally, the high sodium content of the meteorites implies that the body they originated from was rich in water (3).  Yet, it they are inconsistent with Martian meteorites.  Venus seems an impossible fit.

So, the problem is - which body in the solar system did the meteorites come from, and how did they get here?  Our knowledge of the composition of many planets and asteroids in the solar system is incomplete, and the data we have from our current collection of meteorites is limited:

"The contemporary flux of meteorites is biased and unrepresentative of Solar System materials; this is because of the complex sequence of events required to bring a meteorite from its parent body to Earth. These biases include, but are not limited to, longevity of the parent body in the asteroid belt, location of asteroids near dynamically favourable delivery zones/resonances, impact-excavation and preservation of the meteorite from its parent body and low-velocity collision with Earth." (4)

It may be that the originating body is one of the larger asteroids, but how did the asteroid manage to undergo these internal changes so quickly?  The solar system had barely had time to form before these fragments were separated from their parent body.  It has been suggested that the differentiation of the body was only partial - and that this would allow scientists to square the circle of the remarkable age of these meteorites against the timeframe needed for the parent body to properly differentiate (5). 

A more radical suggestion has been put forward by Lunar and Planetary Institute researcher Allain Treiman.  He thinks it probable that the source was a destroyed dwarf planet (6).  Under this hypothesis, fragments of the destroyed world remain in the asteroid belt, awaiting spectroscopic analysis for verification.  We know that the early solar system was a violent place.  We may be closer to understanding some of the detail of that early turmoil.


Written by Andy Lloyd, with research by Lee Covino, 7th December 2009


1) Paul Rincon, "Antarctica's unique space rocks" 13 March 2008 article

2) Anne Minard, "Mysterious Meteorites Stymie Scientists" 12 March 2008 article

3) Lester Haines, "Antarctic meteorite points to smashed dwarf planet" 13 March 2008 article

4)  J.M.D. Day, et al "Making Crust In The Asteroid Belt: Evidence From GRA 06128/9 And Brachinites" 40th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (2009) document

5), "Half-baked asteroids have Earth-like crust" 7 January 2009 news

6) Luke McKinney "Antarctica Yields Fossils of a Destroyed Dwarf" December 2009, article no longer available online



Astronomers image distant Dark Star


It may be 50 light years away, but astronomers have succeeded in directly imaging a brown dwarf companion orbiting the sun-like star named GJ 758 (1).  At least, that's what they think it is.  The planet lies at 29 AU  from its parent star (about the same distance as Neptune from the Sun), and is only 600F - which is a very low temperature for a brown dwarf (2).  It may be as low as 10 Jupiter masses, which would bring it into the category of sub-brown dwarf.  Its distance is proving to be a headache for astronomers:

"The fact that such a large planet-like object might be orbiting at this location defies traditional thinking on how planets form, McElwain said. Astronomers think most large planets form either closer to or farther away from stars, but not in the location where GJ 758 B is now.


"This challenging but beautiful detection of a very low mass companion to a sun-like star reminds us again how little we truly know about the census of gas giant planets and brown dwarfs around nearby stars," said Alan Boss, an astronomer at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C., who was not involved in the research. "Observations like this will enable theorists to begin to make sense of how this hitherto unseen population of bodies was able to form and evolve."" (1)


Sun, Earth, Jupiter and a Dark Star


But things may not be quite as they seem:

"Telescope images also revealed a second companion to the star, which the scientists have called GJ 758 C. More observations, however, are needed to confirm whether it is nearby or just looks that way.  'It looks very promising,' said Christian Thalmann, one of the team's lead scientists. If it should turn out to be a second companion, he said, that would make both of them more likely to be young planets rather than old brown dwarfs, since two brown dwarfs in such close proximity would not remain stable for such a long period of time." (2)

If confirmed, GJ 758 B and C might well bang a further hole in current brown dwarf theory!  Jacco van der Worp makes the excellent point that the problematic 'Kozai effect' would be an early casualty of such a finding (3).  Let's say that GJ 758 B and C are both confirmed as companions of the parent star 50 light years away from us.  Two brown dwarfs existing within 30AU would raise major issues about how such a system could have remained stable over any length of time.  This system does not appear to be very young, so it seems unlikely that the proposed brown dwarf B is in fact a much younger, smaller light-emitting planet.  This appears to be the 'get-out' clause if GJ 758 C was found to be a companion BD too. 

If GJ 758 B and C are both BDs, then the Kozai effect is in trouble.  The implication is that a BD could well move through the solar system regularly without causing chaos (which was Hills' judgement back in the mid-eighties, when the Nemesis concept was explored using supercomputer models).  That would open up the Planet X debate considerably!  I'm not saying that Planet X is here right now, but it would mean that it could have moved through the solar system in the historical past, as a visible object, without dismantling the orbits of the other planetary objects.

If a sub-brown dwarf is orbiting around our own Sun (which I believe is the case, based upon the anomalous evidence of the outer solar system), then it is a wide binary object that probably currently lies between the Kuiper Belt and the inner Oort Cloud.  Scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory are also interested in the question of whether a brown dwarf might exist at the edges of the solar system.  A plethora of new telescopes and probes look set to vastly expand our knowledge of the far-flung reaches of the solar system in the years to come, starting with the launch of the infra-red telescope WISE (4).


Written by Andy Lloyd, 7th - 11th December 2009



1) staff "First Photo Taken of Object Around Sun-Like Star, Scientists Say" 3 December 2009, with thanks to Lloyd and Mike article

2) Claire Bates "Pictured: First direct image of planet orbiting a star similar to our Sun‏" 4 December 2009, with thanks to Mart article

3) Correspondence from Jacco van der Worp, 7 December 2009

4) Alan Boyle "Hunt for new worlds goes into overdrive" 10 December 2009,  with thanks to Lee article


Spanish Researchers claim Dark Star discovery


A group of Spanish scientists have released details of a brown dwarf companion theory that is eerily reminiscent of the Dark Star theory.  I think these guys wrote to me a while ago, but I had trouble verifying who they were. They might be putting forward original research that simply corroborates much of what I've claimed, or they might be relying quite heavily on my prior work.  It's hard to say for sure.  They identify the sub-BD (of almost 2 Jupiter masses) as being in Sagittarius, which I agree with.  But at "60AU" this object is simply way too close.  That's only twice the distance of Neptune! 


They make the additional claim that the sub-BD, which they name G1.9, is a celestial object erroneously previously identified as a recent supernova.  Their claim is evaluated on the website 

"G1.9 was first identified as a "supernova remnant" in 1984 by Dave Green of the University of Cambridge and later studied in greater detail with NRAO's Very Large Array radio telescope in 1985. Because it was unusually small for a supernova it was thought to be young -- less than about 1000 years old.  But in 2007, X-ray observations made with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory revealed that the object was much larger than the last time it was observed! It had grown in size by 16%.

"Puzzled by this observation, the Very Large Array repeated its observations of 23 years ago and verified that it had increased in size considerably. Knowing that supernova do not expand this quickly, unless they have just exploded, they explained that G1.9 must be a "very young" supernova -- perhaps not more than 150 years old. But no record of a visible supernova has been found corresponding to that historical period (about the time of the American Civil War).

"Spanish astronomers have tracked this object with great interest because they were anticipating its appearance. Gravitational anomalies have been appearing in the Oort Cloud for some time, suggesting the perturbations were caused by a nearby object with considerable mass. The announcement that G1.9 had increased in size was no mystery to them. It is exactly what they would expect as the object moved closer to Earth." (1)

The article debunks their claim that the supernova is actually a brown dwarf star.  I also think at that distance we'd have a much better and clearer image of a spherical brown dwarf object.  Saying that, the possibility that a brown dwarf companion might be a misidentified catalogued object is a good one.  It might not be this particular object, but that's not to say that it might not be another one in the same vicinity.  It would be nice to know who the members of this Spanish 'scientific research team' are.  Perhaps cracks are appearing in the standard scientific consensus that a brown dwarf companion object is an impossibility.


Written by Andy Lloyd, 20th December 2009



1) Gary Vey,  "Spanish Astronomers Claim Dwarf Sun Beyond Pluto"

Gary Vey's critical investigation into the claims of the 'Starviewer Team' continues here:



All articles written by Andy Lloyd, 2009, author of


 'The Dark Star' (2005),  'Ezekiel One' (2009),  'The Followers of Horus' (2010),  'Darker Stars' (2019)


Dark Star Blog 2006-7


Dark Star Blog 2008


Dark Star Blog 2010


Dark Star Blog 2011


Dark Star Blog 2012


Dark Star Blog 2013