Astronomy

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  • Once in a Lifetime Comet Siding Spring Skimming by Mars Today!

    Brown SpaceMan
    Zain Husain
    19 Oct 2014 | 10:36 am
    Comet Siding Spring Skimming Mars and Giving Our Satell […] The post Once in a Lifetime Comet Siding Spring Skimming by Mars Today! appeared first on Brown SpaceMan.
  • More Polaris

    StarDate Online
    damonddb
    23 Oct 2014 | 10:00 pm
    A half-century ago, the North Star had a little hiccup. Today, astronomers are still trying to understand what happened. Polaris is a stellar supergiant that’s nearing the end of its life. The nuclear “engine” in its core is changing the way it produces energy. And that’s made the star unstable. Its outer layers pulse in and out like a beating heart, with each “beat” taking about four days. Until 1963, Polaris’s brightness varied by about 10 percent with each beat. And the pulses were getting longer — by about four seconds per year. From 1963 to ’66, though, things changed.
  • Mars and Comet Siding Spring

    Astronomy News
    Tom
    23 Oct 2014 | 9:30 pm
    A Hubble look at Mars and comet Siding Spring. Image Credit: NASA/ESA/PSI/JHU/APL, STScI/AURA Have a look at this Hubble image of Mars AND comet Siding Spring in the same field of view during the close pass on 19 October. The comet came as close as 140,000 km / 87,000 miles – only a third of our Earth to Moon distance. I am trying to imagine what that would be like. This from Hubblesite: This composite of NASA Hubble Space Telescope images captures the positions of comet Siding Spring and Mars in a never-before-seen close passage of a comet by the Red Planet, which happened at 2:28…
  • The whirling disc of NGC 4526

    Astronomy Cmarchesin
    24 Oct 2014 | 3:38 am
    NGC 4526 Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASAAcknowledgement: Judy SchmidtThis neat little galaxy is known as NGC 4526. Its dark lanes of dust and bright diffuse glow make the galaxy appear to hang like a halo in the emptiness of space in this new image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope.Although this image paints a picture of serenity, the galaxy is anything but. It is one of the brightest lenticular galaxies known, a category that lies somewhere between spirals and ellipticals. It has hosted two known supernova explosions, one in 1969 and another in 1994, and is known to have a colossal…
  • An Early Morning Eclipse

    Astronomy Today
    Kelly
    10 Oct 2014 | 6:41 am
    A Partial Lunar Eclipse during Moonset The total lunar eclipse was going to occur from about 5:30 to 6:30 on Wednesday morning. My alarm was set for 6:00, like usual, and the forecast was for perfectly clear skies. I was awake fifteen minutes before my alarm but patiently waited until six o’clock, because the only upstairs windows that face west where the eclipsed Moon was setting are in my children’s bedrooms. I was not awake enough to go downstairs nor mean enough to wake them unnecessarily early. At 6:00 I walked into my son’s bedroom and raised his blinds, like I do every morning to…
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    Astronomy Today

  • An Early Morning Eclipse

    Kelly
    10 Oct 2014 | 6:41 am
    A Partial Lunar Eclipse during Moonset The total lunar eclipse was going to occur from about 5:30 to 6:30 on Wednesday morning. My alarm was set for 6:00, like usual, and the forecast was for perfectly clear skies. I was awake fifteen minutes before my alarm but patiently waited until six o’clock, because the only upstairs windows that face west where the eclipsed Moon was setting are in my children’s bedrooms. I was not awake enough to go downstairs nor mean enough to wake them unnecessarily early. At 6:00 I walked into my son’s bedroom and raised his blinds, like I do every morning to…
  • Losing the Comet but Winning the Ring

    Kelly
    16 Sep 2014 | 9:22 am
    The Ring Nebula, M57 in Lyra, by John Chumack When the clouds finally cleared from overhead, they were replaced by clouds upon the ground. I stood in my driveway looking up at the stars arrayed above while fog swirled around my feet. These are not ideal conditions for observing, but at least the stars can be seen, whereas the clouds had been blocking all manner of wonders, including the recent aurora, for nights on end. My goal has been to find Comet Jacques and – spoiler alert – I still have not accomplished it. Even though I’ve used the finder maps and zeroed in on exactly where it…
  • Targeting Sagittarius

    Kelly
    31 Aug 2014 | 7:55 am
    M8, The Lagoon Nebula in Sagittarius, by John Chumack Sagittarius is an incredibly rich area for stargazing, but it’s only easily viewable for a short time. Summer is the best season for observing, but even then it stays low on the southern horizon. Sagittarius is an easy constellation even for children to spot because it has a grouping of stars that looks almost exactly like a teapot. Get out a pair of binoculars or use the finderscope on your telescope and scan the area until you find a fuzzy patch in the sky. Then look through the eyepiece of the telescope to see if you’ve captured a…
  • Observing Summer Constellations

    Kelly
    28 Jul 2014 | 12:45 pm
    The Milky Way and Vega by John Chumack On summer evenings as adults sit around bonfires and kids run in the yard playing flashlight tag, eyes turn skyward. Teach your friends and family the most important summer constellations with this handy guide on what star formations are overhead. Start with the easiest constellation just to orient yourself in the star-filled sky. The Big Dipper is neither a true constellation or a specifically summer constellation, but it will help you get started. The Big Dipper is easy to located in the northwest on summer evenings and is circumpolar, meaning that it…
  • Crossing off the Bucket List: Zodiacal Light

    Kelly
    27 May 2014 | 12:11 pm
    The Zodiacal Light looks pyramidal shaped from horizon stretching upward. Credit: ESO/Y. Beletsky Amateur astronomers never really take a vacation from stargazing. And in fact, sometimes vacations provide for the best stargazing. Over spring break this year my family and I did a tour of the national parks, starting and ending our vacation in Las Vegas, one of the most light polluted locations on Earth. But McCarran International airport made for a good spot to begin our travels first to Utah’s national parks, then to Great Basin National Park in Nevada along the loneliest highway in…
 
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    Astronomy News

  • Mars and Comet Siding Spring

    Tom
    23 Oct 2014 | 9:30 pm
    A Hubble look at Mars and comet Siding Spring. Image Credit: NASA/ESA/PSI/JHU/APL, STScI/AURA Have a look at this Hubble image of Mars AND comet Siding Spring in the same field of view during the close pass on 19 October. The comet came as close as 140,000 km / 87,000 miles – only a third of our Earth to Moon distance. I am trying to imagine what that would be like. This from Hubblesite: This composite of NASA Hubble Space Telescope images captures the positions of comet Siding Spring and Mars in a never-before-seen close passage of a comet by the Red Planet, which happened at 2:28…
  • Partial Solar Eclipse

    Tom
    22 Oct 2014 | 9:46 pm
    Tomorrow afternoon there will be a partial solar eclipse that most of North America is going to get to see.  Heavy rain expected here and the eclipse being very near or at sunset, well, I’m going to miss out on the “live” version but NASA TV will be showing coverage stating at 17:00 EDT / 22:00 UT, you should be able to find it at the link in the banner. Hopefully YOU are going to be more fortunate!  Here is a static image of the “timing map” from the video: Eclipse Predictions by Fred Espenak, NASA’s GSFC – http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/ Video…
  • Comet Dunes?

    Tom
    21 Oct 2014 | 9:49 pm
    Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from just 7.8 km away. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM Here is one panel of four images from the Rosetta spacecraft on 18 October when the spacecraft was only 7.8 km from the surface. The image scale is about 92 cm per pixel according to the caption The images here were taken about 20 minutes apart and the rotation is apparent, so Photoshop route of putting them together isn’t working out so good. Trying to accomplish the task of putting the four frames together is made more difficult because I am doing it on a laptop. I have a new plan: I am going to print…
  • A Rover View of Comet

    Tom
    20 Oct 2014 | 9:40 pm
    NASA Rover Opportunity view of the Mars comet. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell Univ./ASU/TAMU This is the (annotated) view of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring from the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity about two-and-a-half hours before the close encounter with Mars. Want an non-annotated version? You will notice some cosmic ray hits are labeled. Very common artifact as anyone who dabbles even a little in astrophotography will attest. This image has been processed to remove detector artifacts and a slight twilight glow. The processing was very well done, sometimes the processing is half…
  • HAYABUSA 2

    Tom
    19 Oct 2014 | 10:07 pm
    The JAXA Hayabusa2 spacecraft at the Sagamihara Campus. Credit: JAXA On 30 November 2014 JAXA will launch the Haybusa2 mission to asteroid 1999JU3. This mission is a successor to Haybusa which launched in 2003 to the asteroid Itokawa. The spacecraft arrived in 2005 and released a little probe called “Minerva” which actually touched down on the asteroid twice. There was a sample return on the Hayabusa mission which eventuualy did make it back but not until major obstacles were overcome. In December 2005 communications with the spacecraft was lost. JAXA never once gave in, they regained…
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    Universe Today

  • Making Cubesats do Astronomy

    Tim Reyes
    24 Oct 2014 | 12:18 pm
    Will cubesats lead to a new technological branch of astronomy? Goddard engineers are taking the necessary steps to make cubesat-sized telescopes a reality. (Credit: NASA, UniverseToday/TRR) One doesn’t take two cubesats and rub them together to make static electricity. Rather, you send them on a brief space voyage to low-earth orbit (LEO) and space them apart some distance and voilà, you have a telescope. That is the plan of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center engineers and also what has been imagined by several others. Cubesats are one of the big crazes in the new space…
  • Weekly Space Hangout – Oct. 24, 2014

    Fraser Cain
    24 Oct 2014 | 11:54 am
    Host: Fraser Cain (@fcain) Guests: Ramin Skibba (@raminskibba) (...)Read the rest of Weekly Space Hangout – Oct. 24, 2014 (12 words) © Fraser for Universe Today, 2014. | Permalink | No comment | Post tags: Black Holes, Cassini, China, Fermi Satellite, Hubble, Kepler, MESSENGER, milky way, Moon, Orion, solar eclipse, space plane Feed enhanced by Better Feed from Ozh
  • This Is the Very First Photo of Earth From Space

    Jason Major
    24 Oct 2014 | 8:59 am
    The first photo of Earth from space was taken on Oct. 24, 1946 (Credit: White Sands Missile Range/Applied Physics Laboratory) These days we see photos of our planet taken from space literally every day. Astronauts living aboard the International Space Station, weather and Earth-observing satellites in various orbits, even distant spacecraft exploring other planets in our Solar System… all have captured images of Earth from both near and far. But there was a time not that long ago when there were no pictures of Earth from space, when a view of our planet against the blackness of the…
  • Comet Siding Spring Was Bleeding Hydrogen As It Sped By Mars

    Elizabeth Howell
    24 Oct 2014 | 7:30 am
    Comet Siding Spring shines in ultraviolet in this image obtained by the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) spacecraft. Credit: Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics/University of Colorado; NASA As Comet Siding Spring passed close by Mars on Sunday (Oct. 19), NASA’s newest Mars spacecraft took a time-out from its commissioning to grab some ultraviolet pictures of its coma. What you see above is hydrogen, a whole lot of it, leaving the comet in this picture taken from 5.3 million miles (8.5 million kilometers). The hydrogen is a product of the water ice on the comet…
  • Stinky! Rosetta’s Comet Smells Like Rotten Eggs And Ammonia

    Elizabeth Howell
    24 Oct 2014 | 7:09 am
    A view of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on Sept. 26, 2014 from the orbiting Rosetta spacecraft. Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM While you can’t smell in space — there is no medium to carry the molecules, the same reason you can’t hear things — you can certainly detect what molecules are emanating from comets and other solar system bodies. A new analysis of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko by the orbiting Rosetta spacecraft thus found a rather pungent chemistry combination. The spacecraft detected hydrogen sulphide (the smell of rotten eggs), ammonia and formaldehyde with…
 
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    Astroblog

  • The Sky This Week - Thursday October 23 to Thursday October 30

    21 Oct 2014 | 5:05 am
    The New Moon is Friday October 24. Saturn is low in the evening sky. The crescent Moon is near Saturn on the 25th. Mars is in the star clouds of Sagittarius and is close to the Lagoon Nebula on the 27th and 28th. The crescent Moon is also near Mars on the 28th. Jupiter is prominent in the morning sky. Comet C/212 K1 PanSTARRS is visible in binoculars.The New Moon is Friday October 24.Evening sky on Tuesday October 28 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 20:45 (8:45 pm) ACDST in South Australia. Saturn is under the head of  Scorpius. The crescent Moon is close to Mars. The inset shows…
  • Relive the Comet Siding Spring - Mars Encounter

    20 Oct 2014 | 6:27 am
    Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring captured 6-7 hours before its closest approach to Mars (big object down the bottom) on October 19. Image by Peter Lake at iTelescope, colours inverted to make the comet easier to see.Here's the YouTube video he madehttp://youtu.be/ehufS2GcWO0Here's the link to the recording of the live hangout form the encounter that night.https://plus.google.com/events/c37ac7ps3n0va5j6tibeblnkpfc The NASA Siding Spring site has links to Flika albums of the encounterhttp://mars.nasa.gov/comets/sidingspring/Terry Lovejoy's Animationhttp://vimeo.com/109365734 Via Dan Fischer, all…
  • An Image of Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring - Taken from the Martian Surface!

    20 Oct 2014 | 5:57 am
    This is comet Siding Spring, imaged from the surface of Mars, by a robot (Opportunity, the Energiser Bunny of Mars robots). Image credit NASAhttps://twitter.com/nivnac/status/524111689399406592/photo/1
  • My Image of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring just before closest approach.

    19 Oct 2014 | 6:45 am
    Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring at 9:00 pm ACDST, when it was approximately 18' from Mars (bright glow bottom right-hand side).Stack of 3x30 second luminance images taken with iTelescope T9.
  • Live Webcasts of the comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring Encounter with Mars October 19.

    18 Oct 2014 | 7:47 am
    Simulated in Celestia: Mars and comet C/2013 Siding Spring on October 19, at 18:51 UT when the comet is 138,800 Km from Mars. From Earth they will be a mere 1' 51" apart (that's one arc minute 53 arc seconds, about the width of a human hair).If you are clouded out on the night of closest approach, there are a number of  live webcasts of the event on the early evening of the 19th.  You will see a fuzzy blob and a bright bob, but this is a scpecial occasion, so there wll be a lot of interesting discussion.There is a Google Hangout in Australia. 11:00 UT (around 10 pm…
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    Hogg's Research

  • training convolutional nets to find exoplanets

    22 Oct 2014 | 5:55 pm
    In group meeting today, a good discussion arose about training a supervised method to find exoplanet transits. Data-Science Masters student Elizabeth Lamm (NYU) is working with us to use a convolutional net (think: deep learning) to find exoplanet transits in the Kepler data. Our rough plan is to train this net using real Kepler lightcurves into which we have injected artificial planets. This will give "true positive" training examples, but we also need "true negative" examples. Since transits are rare, most of the lightcurves would make good negative training data; even if we used all of the…
  • K2 pointing model

    21 Oct 2014 | 4:57 pm
    Imagine a strange "game": A crazy telescope designer put thousands of tiny pixelized detectors in the focal plane of an otherwise stable telescope and put it in space. Each detector has an arbitary position in the focal plane, orientation, and pixel scale, or even non-square (affine) pixels. But given the stability, the telescope's properties are set only by three Euler angles. How can you build a model of this? Ben Montet (Harvard CfA), Foreman-Mackey, and I worked on this problem today. Our approach is to construct a three-dimensional "latent-variable" space in which the telescope "lives"…
  • single transits, new physics, K2

    20 Oct 2014 | 5:57 pm
    In my small amount of research time, I worked on the text for Hattori's paper on single transits in the Kepler data, including how we can search for them and what can be inferred from them. At lunch, Josh Ruderman (NYU) gave a nice talk on finding beyond-the-standard-model physics in the Atlas experiment at LHC. He made a nice argument at the beginning of his talk that there must be new physics for three reasons: baryogenesis, dark matter, and the hierarchy. The last is a naturalness argument, but the other two are pretty strong arguments! In the afternoon, while I ripped out furniture, Ben…
  • three talks

    17 Oct 2014 | 5:58 pm
    Three great talks happened today. Two by Jason Kalirai (STScI) on WFIRST and the connection between white dwarf stars and their progenitors. One by Foreman-Mackey on the new paper on M-dwarf planetary system abundances by Ballard & Johnson. Kalirai did a good job of justifying the science case for WFIRST; it will do a huge survey at good angular resolution and great depth. He distinguished it nicely from Euclid. It also has a Guest Observer program. On the white-dwarf stuff he showed some mind-blowing color-magnitude diagrams; it is incredible how well calibrated HST is and how well…
  • regression of continuum-normalized spectra

    16 Oct 2014 | 5:22 pm
    I had a short phone call this morning with Jeffrey Mei (NYUAD) about his project to find the absorption lines associated with high-latitude, low-amplitude extinction. The plan is to do regression of A and F-star spectra against labels (in this case, H-delta EW as a temperature indicator and SFD extinction), just like the project with Melissa Ness (MPIA) (where the features are stellar parameters instead). Mei and I got waylaid by the SDSS calibration system, but now we are working on the raw data, and continuum-normalizing before we regress. This gets rid of almost all our calibration issues.
 
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    Astronomy Cmarchesin

  • The whirling disc of NGC 4526

    24 Oct 2014 | 3:38 am
    NGC 4526 Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASAAcknowledgement: Judy SchmidtThis neat little galaxy is known as NGC 4526. Its dark lanes of dust and bright diffuse glow make the galaxy appear to hang like a halo in the emptiness of space in this new image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope.Although this image paints a picture of serenity, the galaxy is anything but. It is one of the brightest lenticular galaxies known, a category that lies somewhere between spirals and ellipticals. It has hosted two known supernova explosions, one in 1969 and another in 1994, and is known to have a colossal…
  • NASA-led Study Sees Titan Glowing at Dusk and Dawn

    22 Oct 2014 | 7:10 pm
    High in the atmosphere of Titan, large patches of two trace gases glow near the north pole, on the dusk side of the moon, and near the south pole, on the dawn side. Brighter colors indicate stronger signals from the two gases, HNC (left) and HC3N (right); red hues indicate less pronounced signals.Image Credit:  NRAO/AUI/NSFNew maps of Saturn’s moon Titan reveal large patches of trace gases shining brightly near the north and south poles. These regions are curiously shifted off the poles, to the east or west, so that dawn is breaking over the southern region while dusk is falling over…
  • Two Families of Comets Found Around Nearby Star

    22 Oct 2014 | 7:00 pm
    PR Image eso1432aArtist’s impression of exocomets around Beta Pictoris PR Image eso1432bBeta Pictoris as Seen in Infrared Light PR Image eso1432cExoplanet caught on the move PR Image eso1432dAround Beta Pictoris  VideosPR Video eso1432aArtist’s impression of exocomets around Beta Pictoris Biggest census ever of exocomets around Beta PictorisThe HARPS instrument at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile has been used to make the most complete census of comets around another star ever created. A French team of astronomers has studied nearly 500 individual comets orbiting the…
  • NASA's Fermi Satellite Finds Hints of Starquakes in Magnetar 'Storm'

    22 Oct 2014 | 10:12 am
    NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope detected a rapid-fire "storm" of high-energy blasts from a highly magnetized neutron star, also called a magnetar, on Jan. 22, 2009. Now astronomers analyzing this data have discovered underlying signals related to seismic waves rippling throughout the magnetar. A rupture in the crust of a highly magnetized neutron star, shown here in an artist's rendering, can trigger high-energy eruptions. Fermi observations of these blasts include information on how the star's surface twists and vibrates, providing new insights into what lies beneath. Image Credit:…
  • Chandra Archive Collection: Chandra's Archives Come to Life

    21 Oct 2014 | 7:00 pm
    Chandra Archive Collection Credit NASA/CXC/SAO Instrument: ACIS JPEG (293.8 kb) Large JPEG (2.2 MB) More Images Chandra Archive Collection(23 Out 13)Every year, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory looks at hundreds of objects throughout space to help expand our understanding of the Universe. Ultimately, these data are stored in the Chandra Data Archive, an electronic repository that provides access to these unique X-ray findings for anyone who would like to explore them. With the passing of Chandra's 15th anniversary in operation on August 26, 1999, the archive continues to grow as…
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    The Urban Astronomer

  • What's Up in Astronomy and Space Exploration

    14 Oct 2014 | 4:47 pm
    Last night a friend asked me "what's up in space exploration and astronomy in the coming weeks?" and I wrote down this list. Enjoy!October 19 - Watching a comet from Mars with NASAOctober 23 - Partial Eclipse of the SunOctober 25 - Bay Area Science Festival astronomy nightNovember 12 - Rosetta probe to land on a cometNovember 17 - A meteor shower: the Leonids
  • The Next Blood Moon: October 8, 2014

    4 Oct 2014 | 2:02 pm
    Total Lunar Eclipse of October 8thWe're in for the second of four total lunar eclipses in 2014-2015. Next week the Full Moon slips into the shadow of the Earth and reveals itself as a 'blood moon' in the early morning sky of Wednesday October 8th. You'll need to be up in the wee hours of the night, as the eclipse reaches total phase at 3:25 am pacific time, where it will remain in total eclipse for an hour. Given our good weather in San Francisco, this should be nicely on display and the view from the west coast should be nice, if you can get out to the beach. The Moon itself will not be a…
  • Red 'Stars' and White Moon

    24 Sep 2014 | 12:01 am
    Slender Moon, Mars and moreFor the next week, the twilight sky will feature a close alignment of two bright shiny red objects, Mars and Antares, and the slender Moon wending its way through the southwestern sky. The Moon encounters the ringed planet Saturn on Saturday 27th and then brackets the close pairing of orange-red Mars and the red supergiant star Antares in the constellation Scorpius. This first lunar cycle of autumn should start out beautifully with the waxing Moon and some lovely alignments. Look south and west shortly after sunset each evening for the best viewing.Image courtesy…
  • Luxury Star Gazing

    10 Sep 2014 | 3:33 pm
    Ritz Carlton Half Moon BayFall in the San Francisco Bay Area means clear skies and mild temperatures, and clear skies along the coast - a welcome change after the fog of summer. If you are in the Bay Area in the coming months, stop by the Ritz Carlton Hotel and Resort in Half Moon Bay for a Friday night star party. I am running star parties there a couple Fridays per month and love the setting, the reasonably dark skies, and the fun interaction with guests from all around the world. The patio is located on a stunningly beautiful stretch of California coast next to the 18th green of the Ocean…
  • Celebrate the Moon - Saturday September 6th

    2 Sep 2014 | 10:54 pm
    This Saturday is International Observe The Moon Night. Where will you be for this special evening? I'll be conducting sidewalk astronomy in front of the Exploratorium in San Francisco along with other astronomy enthusiasts. The Moon will be a few days away from another Supermoon, and if the skies cooperate, we should have a lovely view of Earth's natural satellite in gibbous phase between first quarter and full. Click the link for more information on International Observe The Moon Night. Hope to see you at an event.
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    sci.astro

  • Women's Rights in Islam

    24 Oct 2014 | 6:36 am
    Women's Rights in Islam Islam is the sole religion that gave women her rights, these are so many and recorded in the Quran verses and the traditional sayings of the prophet, these rights are condensed in points here as holy texts, if all written, will take many pages. Equality between man and wome
  • ATHEISTS: Claims of Miracle Bullcrap

    24 Oct 2014 | 3:22 am
      KANSAS CITY, Mo. (Rueters)-- The International Atheist Society, in a stongly-worded statement, has wholeheartedly dismissed any claim that God had anything to do with the Royals' victory in Game Two of the World Series. "Actually, in baseball, God -- IF there was one -- wouldn't know His ass from
  • Re: FATAL ACCELERATION IN EINSTEIN'S SPECIAL RELATIVITY

    23 Oct 2014 | 11:15 am
    http://www.fourmilab.ch/etexts/einstein/specrel/www/ ON THE ELECTRODYNAMICS OF MOVING BODIES, by A. Einstein, June 30, 1905: "From this there ensues the following peculiar consequence. If at the points A and B of K there are stationary clocks which, viewed in the stationary system, are synchronous;
  • [SM] Mars orbiter beams back image of tiny comet nucleus

    22 Oct 2014 | 7:32 am
    From the «cool» department: Title: Mars Orbiter Beams Back Images of Comet's Surprisingly Tiny Nucleus Author: timothy Date: Tue, 21 Oct 2014 08:53:00 -0400 Link: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/XB8hvRGg4rA/story01.htm astroengine writes The High-Resolution Imaging Science Experime
  • My SSD writes small, queued files 29 times faster than my $99 thumb drive. 

    22 Oct 2014 | 4:48 am
      My $474 SSD writes small, queued files 29 times faster than my $99 thumb drive, 215 times faster* than Damien's $60 thumb drive ( 346.152 / 1.607 ). [ Damien is a housemate of mine ] Test: 100 megabytes, twice, CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 x64; Windows 8, x64. C: My $474 SSD drive ( OCZ Vertex 4 SATA III
 
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    Big Picture Science

  • Tale of the Distribution

    SETI Institute
    20 Oct 2014 | 7:24 am
    We all have at least some musical talent. But very few of us can play the piano like Vladimir Horowitz. His talent was rarefied, and at the tail end of the bell curve of musical ability – that tiny sliver of the distribution where you find the true outliers. Outliers also exist with natural events: hurricane Katrina, for example, or the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs. Such events are rare, but they often have outsized effects.  In this hour we imagine the unimaginable – including the unexpected events labeled “black swans” – and how we weigh the risk…
  • Who's Controlling Whom?

    SETI Institute
    13 Oct 2014 | 8:02 am
    A single ant isn’t very brainy. But a group of ants can do remarkable things. Biological swarm behavior is one model for the next generation of tiny robots. Of course, biology can get hijacked: a fungus can seize control of an ant’s brain, for example. So will humans always remain the boss of super-smart, swarming machines?We discuss the biology of zombie ants and how to build robots that self-assemble and work together. Also, how to guarantee the moral behavior of future ‘bots. And, do you crave cupcakes? Research suggests that gut bacteria control what we eat and how…
  • What's the Difference?

    SETI Institute
    6 Oct 2014 | 12:00 am
    We make split second decisions about others – someone is male or female, black or white, us or them. But sometimes the degrees of separation are incredibly few. A mere handful of genes determine skin color, for example. Find out why race is almost non-existent from a biological perspective, and how the snippet of DNA that is the Y chromosome came to separate male from female. Plus, why we’re wired to categorize. And, a groundbreaking court case proposes to erase the dividing line between species: lawyers argue to grant personhood status to our chimpanzee cousins. Guests: David Page…
  • Land on the Run

    SETI Institute
    29 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    Hang on to your globe. One day it’ll be a collector’s item. The arrangement of continents you see today is not what it once was, nor what it will be tomorrow. Thank plate tectonics. Now evidence suggests that the crowding together of all major land masses into one supercontinent – Pangaea, as it’s called – is a phenomenon that’s happened over and over during Earth’s history. And it will happen again. Meet our future supercontinent home, Amasia, and learn what it will look like. Meanwhile, as California waits for the Big One, geologists discover that major earthquakes come in…
  • As You Were

    SETI Institute
    22 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    ENCORE We all want to turn back time. But until we build a time machine, we’ll have to rely on a few creative approaches to capturing things as they were – and preserving them for posterity. One is upping memory storage capacity itself. Discover just how much of the past we can cram into our future archives, and whether going digital has made it all vulnerable to erasure. Plus – scratch it and tear it – then watch this eerily-smart material revert to its undamaged self. And, what was life like pre-digital technology? We can’t remember, but one writer knows; he’s living life circa…
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    StarDate Online

  • More Polaris

    damonddb
    23 Oct 2014 | 10:00 pm
    A half-century ago, the North Star had a little hiccup. Today, astronomers are still trying to understand what happened. Polaris is a stellar supergiant that’s nearing the end of its life. The nuclear “engine” in its core is changing the way it produces energy. And that’s made the star unstable. Its outer layers pulse in and out like a beating heart, with each “beat” taking about four days. Until 1963, Polaris’s brightness varied by about 10 percent with each beat. And the pulses were getting longer — by about four seconds per year. From 1963 to ’66, though, things changed.
  • Polaris

    damonddb
    22 Oct 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Astronomers have been keeping a close eye on the North Star, Polaris, for centuries. That’s allowed them to compile an impressive dossier. They know that the system actually consists of several stars, for example — a brilliant one that’s visible to the eye alone, plus some fainter companions. They know that the bright star is a supergiant that’s much bigger and heavier than the Sun. And they know that it pulses in and out like a beating heart. Even so, there are a lot of open questions about Polaris. One of the most important is its distance. The most direct method for measuring a…
  • Solar Eclipse

    damonddb
    21 Oct 2014 | 10:00 pm
    The afternoon sky will get a little darker than normal for most of the United States tomorrow. That’s because there’s a partial solar eclipse. A solar eclipse occurs when the new Moon passes directly between Earth and the Sun. Most months, the Moon skims just above or below the Sun as seen from Earth, so there’s no eclipse at all. This eclipse is only partial — the Moon will cover only a portion of the Sun’s disk. So the sky will resemble an early dusk, and the temperature may drop a little bit. The eclipse begins when the Moon’s shadow first touches Earth, over Siberia, around…
  • Partial Solar Eclipse on Thursday, October 23, 2014

    Rebecca
    21 Oct 2014 | 11:21 am
    The afternoon sky will get a little darker than normal for most of the United States Thursday. That’s because there’s a partial solar eclipse, according to the editors of StarDate magazine. read more
  • Star Time

    damonddb
    20 Oct 2014 | 10:00 pm
    The stars move across the sky with clockwork precision. So perhaps it’s not surprising that a company that made timepieces took advantage of the stars — to improve both its watches and its image. The Elgin National Watch Company was established in Illinois in 1864 — 150 years ago — and it quickly became one of the world’s leading watchmakers. And in 1910, it built its own astronomical observatory to track the time. The observatory used a transit telescope, which measured the precise time that bright stars crossed the meridian — the line across the sky that passes from due north to…
 
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    Remanzacco Observatory - Comets & Neo

  • Close Approach of Asteroid 2014 SC324

    Team
    24 Oct 2014 | 7:49 am
    The asteroid 2014 SC324 was discovered (at ~ magnitude +21.4) on 2014, September 30.2 by Mt. Lemmon Survey (MPC code G96) with a 1.5-m reflector + CCD. 2014 SC324 has an estimated size of 40 m - 90 m (based on the object's absolute magnitude H=24.1) and it will have a close approach with Earth at about 1.5 LD (Lunar Distances = ~384,000 kilometers) or 0.0038 AU (1 AU = ~150 million kilometers) at 1921 UT on 2014, October 24. This asteroid will reach the peak magnitude about +13.6 at close approach.We performed some follow-up measurements of this object on 2014, October 24.3 remotely from…
  • Comet C/2013 A1 & Mars - Images & Results

    Team
    24 Oct 2014 | 6:44 am
    Comet C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) was discovered by Australian observer R. H. McNaught with the 0.5-m Uppsala Schmidt telescope on 2013, Jan. 03 (discovery magnitude +18.6).  After its discovery, due to the uncertainty within the orbital calculations, there was thought to be a chance of a collision with Mars, but this possibility was excluded when its orbit was determined more accurately. Instead C/2013 A1 passed the planet Mars very closely on 2014, 19 October at 18:29UT. According to JPL website (With an observation arc of 733 days) the comet passed at a Nominal Distance of about 139,500…
  • New fragmentation event in C/2011 J2 (LINEAR)

    Team
    13 Oct 2014 | 11:51 am
    Starting from 2014, Sept 26.9 we are constantly monitoring comet C/2011 J2 (LINEAR) and his fragment B through a 2.0-m f/10.0 Ritchey-Chretien + CCD (La Palma-Liverpool Telescope). The video below shows an animation we made using our recent obs of this comet. Time span is 9 days (from 1 Oct. to 9 Oct). The projected velocity of the fragment is of about 0.3 arcsec/day.While performing follow-up of component B of comet C/2011 J2 on 2014, Oct 09.9  we detected a possible new diffuse fragment located in the very near proximity of main component A. Nothing was visible on our images taken on…
  • Follow-up of splitting event in Comet C/2011 J2

    Team
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:01 pm
    CBET 3979, issued on 2014 September 19, announced that observations of comet C/2011 J2 (LINEAR) (by F. Manzini, V. Oldani, A. Dan and R. Behrend) on Aug. 27.95, 28.85, and 30.91 UT led to the detection of a second, fainter, nuclear condensation (from now on Component B) located 0".8 east and 7".5 north of the main, brighter nuclear condensation (component A). For more info about comet C/2011 J2 please see our May 2011 post on this blog by clicking here. Whilst working on a long term morphology study on comet C/2012 K1 with N. Samarasinha and B. Mueller using the 2-meter Liverpool Telescope,…
  • Close Approach of Asteroid 2014 RC

    Team
    5 Sep 2014 | 6:10 am
    The asteroid 2014 RC was discovered (at ~ magnitude +20.0) on 2014, September 01.2 by Catalina Sky Survey (MPC code 703) with a 0.68-m Schmidt + CCD (and independently detected the next night by the Pan-STARRS survey).2014 RC has an estimated size of 12 m - 26 m (based on the object's absolute magnitude H=26.8) and it will have a close approach with Earth at about 0.1 LD (Lunar Distances = ~384,000 kilometers) or 0.0003 AU (1 AU = ~150 million kilometers) at 1801 UT on 2014, September 07. This asteroid will reach the peak magnitude about +11.5 on Sep 7 between 17UT and 18UT.We performed some…
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    Brown SpaceMan

  • Once in a Lifetime Comet Siding Spring Skimming by Mars Today!

    Zain Husain
    19 Oct 2014 | 10:36 am
    Comet Siding Spring Skimming Mars and Giving Our Satell […] The post Once in a Lifetime Comet Siding Spring Skimming by Mars Today! appeared first on Brown SpaceMan.
  • Carnival of Space 375

    Zain Husain
    12 Oct 2014 | 11:40 am
    Welcome to Carnival of Space 375!     Hello s […] The post Carnival of Space 375 appeared first on Brown SpaceMan.
  • 17 Amazing Reasons to Why We Should Be Excited About Space

    Zain Husain
    15 Sep 2014 | 3:44 pm
    17 Amazing Reasons to Why We Should Be Excited About Sp […] The post 17 Amazing Reasons to Why We Should Be Excited About Space appeared first on Brown SpaceMan.
  • Mission to Jupiter’s Moon Europa: 2014 Edition

    Zain Husain
    19 Jul 2014 | 8:54 pm
    2014 Update on the Mission to Jupiter’s Moon Euro […] The post Mission to Jupiter’s Moon Europa: 2014 Edition appeared first on Brown SpaceMan.
  • Carnival of Space 356

    Zain Husain
    1 Jun 2014 | 7:06 pm
    Welcome to Carnival of Space 356!     We have […] The post Carnival of Space 356 appeared first on Brown SpaceMan.
 
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    Astronomy and Space News - Astro Watch

  • Comet Smells Like Urine, ESA Scientists Reveal

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    24 Oct 2014 | 2:48 pm
    If you could smell the comet, you would probably wish that you hadn’t. ESA scientists have discovered the smell of the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (67P/C-G): rotten eggs, horse urine and formaldehyde. Rosetta spacecraft's Orbiter Sensor for Ion and Neutral Analysis (ROSINA) has been ‘sniffing the fumes’ of 67P/C-G with its two mass spectrometers. “The perfume of 67P/C-G is quite strong, with the odour of rotten eggs (hydrogen sulphide), horse stable (ammonia), and the pungent, suffocating odour of formaldehyde," said Kathrin Altwegg, the principal investigator for ROSINA. "This is…
  • Lucky Star Escapes Black Hole With Minor Damage

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    24 Oct 2014 | 2:04 pm
    Astronomers have gotten the closest look yet at what happens when a black hole takes a bite out of a star—and the star lives to tell the tale. We may think of black holes as swallowing entire stars—or any other object that wanders too close to their immense gravity. But sometimes, a star that is almost captured by a black hole escapes with only a portion of its mass torn off. Such was the case for a star some 650 million light years away toward Ursa Major, the constellation that contains the “Big Dipper,” where a supermassive black hole tore off a chunk of material from a star that…
  • Pac-Man in the Sky: Partial Solar Eclipse Creates Crescent Sun

    Astro
    24 Oct 2014 | 7:07 am
    Skywatchers in North America were treated to the fourth and final eclipse of the year on Thursday. The partial solar eclipse - which occurred when a new moon hides part of the Sun making it look as though Pac-Man were eating his way across the sky – was almost exclusively visible on land from North America. Unlike a full solar eclipse it does not turn the sky dark because there is still plenty of sunlight. The event started to unfold near the Kamchatka Peninsula in far eastern Russia at around 3:37 p.m. EDT. The show in the sky reached its height at 5:45 p.m. EDT, NASA said, meaning the…
  • Rocket Flight Tests Four Technology Payloads

    Astro
    24 Oct 2014 | 2:48 am
    Four NASA sponsored experiments were provided nearly four minutes of microgravity flight and testing after UP Aerospace's SpaceLoft rocket SL-9 soared into suborbital space from Spaceport America outside of Las Cruces, New Mexico on Thursday. While flying on suborbital launch vehicles in zero gravity, experimental technologies are briefly exposed to the space environment where they are expected to operate. Funded by NASA's Flight Opportunities Program, three of the technologies were flown in collaboration with NASA's Game Changing Development Program: an advanced micro sun sensor from NASA's…
  • China Successfully Launches Moon Flyby Mission

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    23 Oct 2014 | 11:37 pm
    China launched an unmanned spacecraft at 6:00 p.m. UTC on Thursday to test technologies to be used in the Chang'e-5, a future probe that will conduct the country's first moon mission with a return to Earth. The lunar orbiter was launched atop an advanced Long March-3C rocket from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in southwest China's Sichuan Province. The test spacecraft separated from its carrier rocket and entered the expected the orbit shortly after the liftoff, according to the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense. The whole mission will take…
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    Life of Controversy

  • Nobel Prize 2014 : Physics Front Runners & Winners

    Word Smith
    17 Oct 2014 | 3:01 am
    Dear Readers Yes! The Nobel Prize award ceremonies are just a couple of months off and from what I hear it’s going to be dynamite! (Pardon the ill choice of words)The prize winners were announced over the past couple of days as we gear up towards December. I decided to do a series of articles covering the Prize Categories  But where is the controversy? You may ask. Well firstly there will be the controversy as to why I’m writing about this seemingly non-controversial topic thus diverging from the central theme of the blog itself.Secondly competitions themselves are in their…
  • Release the KRAKEN: 20,000 leagues of controversy

    Word Smith
    3 Oct 2014 | 8:17 am
    Dear Readers My love and curiosity of the grandiose ocean realm began the day I picked up Jules Verne’s classic sublime masterpiece where we follow Professor Pierre Arronax as circumstance lands him in the bowels of the infamous Nautilus. Here we encounter the mystifying and frightful wonders of the deep sea and all its inhabitants including the mysterious Captain Nemo as they travel 20,000 leagues under the sea.Although that promo was “the bomb” we are here to talk about another equally thrilling enigma that happened to be one of the most memorable characters in the book. The…
  • HeForShe:The Peaceful Coexistence of the Sexes

    Word Smith
    25 Sep 2014 | 9:31 pm
    Dear Readers I’m sure by now you’ve all seen or heard of the UN pro-gender equality campaign #HeForShe, and especially the very eloquent Emma Watson‘s emotionally stirring speech.   The quiver in her voice I felt emphasized the direness of the situation and served to further strengthen the whole message.  Truly inspiring.This set me off on an exciting, gear crunching thought process. What is sexism derived from?Sexism stems from the biological differences between a male and a female, or in scientific terms the sexual dimorphism that arises due to the DNA…
  • Double O Desperation: Cloud Fall

    Word Smith
    8 Sep 2014 | 7:21 pm
    Dear readersLast week saw the fall from favour of the infamous cloud storage system.Some equally famous Celebrities have found themselves in an extremely awkward predicament as some sorry sexually frustratedSOBs caught them with their pants down……………literally. I’m slightly embarrassed to say that I too was subjected to this invasion of privacy as a..Ahem.. Slightly revealing photograph was released to a seedy part of the internet. But as internet amendment 34 states “If it exists…. Oh pardon me wrong amendment. I believe its amendment 43 that states “once it’s…
  • Em Drive: The Little Engine That Could

    Word Smith
    5 Sep 2014 | 11:01 pm
    Dear Readers In this vast Blogosphere it is vital to differentiate yourself from the rest of the faceless mass. I have done this by always being fashionably late and thus keeping stories alive. By giving you outdated news, I strive to combat their extremely high mortality rate. In this day and age People yearn for new and fresh things, it’s like they have this bottomless pit in their souls which they try to fill up by cramming the latest trend, radical acronyms, hip songs, etcetera, etcetera. First things first I’m the realest; so to those people I say screw you sirs and madams and while…
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