Exploring Strange New Worlds

Updated: Aug 4

Steph Stonewall writes:

We are living in a science fiction era.

Back in the early 1960s, when TV shows like Doctor Who and The Twilight Zone were first starting, nobody had actually seen the surface of any other planet in our solar system. 1965 was the year when we saw the first photographs of another planet courtesy of the Mariner 4 spacecraft. Since then - in a single generation - humanity's view of our solar system has changed forever from fuzzy pin-pricks of light to high resolution digital images of interplanetary real estate.

When the final Star Trek (TOS) movie hit the theatres in 1991 and portrayed alien worlds, human beings had not yet seen any evidence that such worlds actually existed. Then, in 1992, astronomers found the first exoplanet and now we know of over 4000 of these places.

This week, surpassing the marvels of the Hubble Space Telescope, the first images from the James Webb telescope have begun to expand our view of the universe more than ever before in human history. Where we could once only imagine galaxies a long time ago and far, far away, we can now see them and marvel at their beauty.

We are reminded of Carl Sagan, who pointed out that we are made of star stuff, and these images bring us closer than ever to seeing our earliest origins.

Are you young (aged 18-35) and have something to say about sci fi? Please send your submission to for possible inclusion here.

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