Astronomy

  • Most Topular Stories

  • 10 Reasons Why Interstellar Travel Shouldn’t Happen

    GALAXYTHREADS
    Galaxy Threads
    24 Jun 2015 | 12:15 am
    The stars above us are a beauty that men have fashioned whole mythologies around. They are truly a sight to behold, and now that we have extended our reach to the moon, the natural progression is that we might want to travel ‘to the stars’. Such travel is a basic part of countless science fiction stories and films, and many might come away with the impression that interstellar travel is an easy task, perhaps just around the corner for the wit of man. Sadly, there are a few serious problems which must be addressed first. 10. Faster than Light. Many stories include zany explanations…
  • Venus and Jupiter Draw Closer (June 28, 2015)

    Astroblog
    28 Jun 2015 | 5:37 am
    Venus and Jupiter as seen at around 18:15 ACST from Largs Bay, Adelaide on 28 June. 6 second exposure at ASA400  with my Canon IXUS. Click to embiggen.Venus and Jupiter as seen at around 18:20 ACST from Largs Bay, Adelaide on 28 June. Stack of 10x6 second exposures at ASA400 3x zoom with my Canon IXUS. Click to embiggen.And so it begins,the final stages of the long journey Venus and Jupiter have made as the come together for the finale on July 1. Campare these images to the ones on June 20 and 21 respectively (my campaign to follow the pair as they got closer was derailed by…
  • Hubble’s View of NGC 6153

    Astronomy News
    Tom
    29 Jun 2015 | 4:11 am
    A nice (and timely) follow-up to a post last week talking a little about metallicity. This planetary nebula has no “common name” that I can find. Looks a bit like a Jellyfish to me. Here’s ESA description: This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows a planetary nebula named NGC 6153, located about 4,000 light-years away in the southern constellation of Scorpius (The Scorpion). The faint blue haze across the frame shows what remains of a star like the sun after it has depleted most of its fuel. When this happens, the outer layers of the star are ejected, and get excited…
  • Cause of SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Failure Unknown; Launch Explosion Photos

    Universe Today
    Ken Kremer
    29 Jun 2015 | 1:25 pm
    SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon resupply spaceship explode about 2 minutes after liftoff from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on June 28, 2015. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL – The root cause of Sundays (June 28) devastating launch failure of the commercial SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is “still unknown” says SpaceX CEO and founder Elon Musk, following the loss of the NASA contracted resupply mission carrying crucial gear and research experiments to the crew serving aboard the Earth orbiting International Space Station (ISS). Meanwhile, search and…
  • more K2 proposal

    Hogg's Research
    26 Jun 2015 | 8:59 pm
    In my research time today, I kept on the K2 proposal. I made the argument that we want K2 to point less well in Campaign 9 than it has in previous Campaigns, because we want the crowded field (which is in the Bulge of the Milky Way) to move significantly relative to the pixel grid. We need that redundancy (or heterogeneity?) for self-calibration. I hope that—if we get this proposal funded—we will also get influence over the spacecraft attitude management!
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Astronomy News

  • Hubble’s View of NGC 6153

    Tom
    29 Jun 2015 | 4:11 am
    A nice (and timely) follow-up to a post last week talking a little about metallicity. This planetary nebula has no “common name” that I can find. Looks a bit like a Jellyfish to me. Here’s ESA description: This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows a planetary nebula named NGC 6153, located about 4,000 light-years away in the southern constellation of Scorpius (The Scorpion). The faint blue haze across the frame shows what remains of a star like the sun after it has depleted most of its fuel. When this happens, the outer layers of the star are ejected, and get excited…
  • Saturn’s Age Problem Solved?

    Tom
    28 Jun 2015 | 10:05 pm
    There has been an ongoing discrepancy involving estimating the age of Saturn. Models that correctly predict Jupiter’s age of 4.5 billion-years-old can only get Saturn’s age to 2.5 billion-years. That’s 2 billion years off (or 2,000 million years if you prefer). The press release from Sandia Labs is below, any press release mentioning metallic hydrogen at high pressures and helium rain has to be good! From Sandia Labs: Experiments at Sandia’s Z machine may help solve that problem when they verified an 80-year-old untested proposition that molecular hydrogen, normally an…
  • Space X Explosion

    Tom
    28 Jun 2015 | 8:43 am
    A press conference is coming up.   Video by
  • Space X CRS – 7 Launch

    Tom
    27 Jun 2015 | 7:10 am
    UPDATE:  There was an explosion about a minute into the flight.  Rocket and payload was completely destroyed.  Video and updates to follow. Mission: SpaceX CRS 7 – Cargo ship to ISS Spacecraft: Dragon cargo ship atop a Falcon 9 rocket Current Status: Go Launch Location: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Launch Pad: Space Launch Complex 40 Launch Date/Time: 28 June 2015 / 14:21 GMT (10:21 EDT) Odds of Launch due to weather: 90 percent Video by
  • Exoplanet Wave Simulation

    Tom
    27 Jun 2015 | 3:47 am
    Following the Dark Matter Lab sim, here’s yet another simulation. This simulation uses a NASA supercomputer to simulate a planet and debris disk around a neighbor star Beta Pictoris. We see the (exo) planetary motion drives spiral waves throughout the disk and this action increases collisions among the orbiting debris. Astronomers Erika Nesvold (UMBC) and Marc Kuchner (NASA Goddard) essentially created a virtual Beta Pictoris in the computer and watched it evolve over millions of years. It is the first full 3-D model of a debris disk where scientists can watch the development of…
 
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Universe Today

  • Cause of SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Failure Unknown; Launch Explosion Photos

    Ken Kremer
    29 Jun 2015 | 1:25 pm
    SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon resupply spaceship explode about 2 minutes after liftoff from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on June 28, 2015. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL – The root cause of Sundays (June 28) devastating launch failure of the commercial SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is “still unknown” says SpaceX CEO and founder Elon Musk, following the loss of the NASA contracted resupply mission carrying crucial gear and research experiments to the crew serving aboard the Earth orbiting International Space Station (ISS). Meanwhile, search and…
  • Venus and Jupiter Meet At Last

    Bob King
    29 Jun 2015 | 8:44 am
    Venus and Jupiter over Australia’s Outback at dusk on June 27, 2015. Tonight (June 29) the duo will be just 36 arc minutes apart or a little more than one Full Moon diameter. Tomorrow they’ll be even closer. Credit: Joseph Brimacombe The year’s finest conjunction is upon us. Chances are you’ve been watching Venus and Jupiter at dusk for some time. Like two lovers in a long courtship, they’ve been slowly approaching one another for the past several months and will finally reach their minimum separation of  just over 1/4° (half a Full Moon diameter) Tuesday…
  • SpaceX Dragon Destroyed in Catastrophic Explosion Soon After Florida Blastoff

    Ken Kremer
    28 Jun 2015 | 9:28 am
    SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket explodes about 2 minutes after liftoff from Cape Canaveral on June 28, 2015. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.comStory updated KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL – A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon cargo ship loaded with critical supplies for the International Space Station (ISS) were destroyed by a catastrophic explosion starting approximately 148 seconds after a successful blastoff today, June 28, from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 10:21 a.m. EDT. “Eastern Range confirms the Falcon 9 and Dragon vehicle broke up,” according to…
  • SpaceX set for Station Resupply Blastoff with Crew Docking Adapter and Bold Landing Attempt on June 28 – Watch Live

    Ken Kremer
    27 Jun 2015 | 4:17 pm
    SpaceX Falcon 9 and Dragon are due to blastoff on June 28, 2015 from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 10:21 a.m. EDT on the CRS-7 mission to the International Space Station. Photo of last SpaceX launch to ISS in April 2015. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com Story updated KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL – With launch less than a day away for SpaceX’s seventh commercial resupply mission carrying a two ton payload of critical science and cargo for the future buildup of human spaceflight to the International Space Station (ISS) on Sunday, June 28,…
  • Weekly Space Hangout – June 26, 2015: Paul Sutter, CCAPP Visiting Fellow

    Fraser Cain
    26 Jun 2015 | 11:59 am
    Host: Fraser Cain (@fcain) Special Guest: This week we welcome Paul Sutter, the CCAPP Visiting Fellow who works on the cosmic microwave background and large-scale structure. Guests: Jolene Creighton (@jolene723 / fromquarkstoquasars.com) Brian Koberlein (@briankoberlein / briankoberlein.com) Morgan Rehnberg (cosmicchatter.org / @MorganRehnberg ) Alessondra Springmann (@sondy) (...)Read the rest of Weekly Space Hangout – June 26, 2015: Paul Sutter, CCAPP Visiting Fellow (584 words) © Fraser for Universe Today, 2015. | Permalink | No comment | Post tags: Feed enhanced by Better Feed from Ozh
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Astroblog

  • Venus and Jupiter Draw Closer (June 28, 2015)

    28 Jun 2015 | 5:37 am
    Venus and Jupiter as seen at around 18:15 ACST from Largs Bay, Adelaide on 28 June. 6 second exposure at ASA400  with my Canon IXUS. Click to embiggen.Venus and Jupiter as seen at around 18:20 ACST from Largs Bay, Adelaide on 28 June. Stack of 10x6 second exposures at ASA400 3x zoom with my Canon IXUS. Click to embiggen.And so it begins,the final stages of the long journey Venus and Jupiter have made as the come together for the finale on July 1. Campare these images to the ones on June 20 and 21 respectively (my campaign to follow the pair as they got closer was derailed by…
  • Geomagnetic alert - again (24-26 June)

    24 Jun 2015 | 5:36 am
    Aurora are like buses, for ages none come along then a whole bunch show up at once.A geomagnetic alert has been issued by the Australian  IPS for the 24nd-26th due to an anticipated impact from a Coronal Mass Ejection that will add to the residual activity of the last few CME. The impact time is may be anywhere from 4 am on the 25th (which is still 24th in Universal Time, which all these alerts are made in) to 4 pm on the 25th, with 10 am being most likely. This could translate into aurora at any time during the early morning  of the 25th and possibly evening of the 25th (or…
  • The Sky This Week - Thursday June 25 to Thursday July 2

    23 Jun 2015 | 8:11 am
    The Full Moon is Thursday July 2. Venus is prominent in the twilight evening sky with bright Jupiter close by. The pair are closest on July 1. Saturn is in the head of the Scorpion and is easily visible in the evening. The Moon is close to Saturn on June 28. Mercury is below the bright star Aldebaran.The Full Moon is Thursday July 2.Early morning sky on Saturday June 28 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 6:30 ACST showing Mercury below the Hyades and the bright star Aldebaran. The pair are just  above the horizon. Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent…
  • Strong Geomagnetic storm underway, may persist until nightime hours in Australia/NZ (June 23)

    22 Jun 2015 | 11:29 pm
    UPDATE:  Night has now fallen, glimpses of aurora have been reported in Tasmania through gaps in cloud and a possible report of aurora through cloud gaps in Victoria. The solar wind speed is high (618 Km/sec), and the magnetic field fluctuates but is currently a very aurora friendly -14 nT. The planetary K index is predicted to rise above 7.A geomagnteic storm that hit in the early morning (around 5 am) in Australia is ongoing. The Storm reached G4 (severe) levels in the early morning, and then has fluctuated between G1 (minor) and G3 (strong).While over all NOAA is listing the storm as…
  • Geomagnetic Alert and Possible Aurora 22-23 June 2015

    22 Jun 2015 | 2:55 am
    An updated geomagnetic alert has been issued by the Australian  IPS for the 22nd-23rd  due to an anticipated impact from a Coronal Mass Ejection catching up with the previously predicted CME. The impact time is uncertain. This could translate into aurora at any time during the late night time of the 22nd to early morning 23rd and possibly evening of the 23rd (or disappointingly, during daylight hours).  Aurora, if they flare up tonight, are likely to be seen in Tasmania, possibly Victoria, and if conditions are favourable in southern WA and Southern South Australia. There is…
 
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Hogg's Research

  • more K2 proposal

    26 Jun 2015 | 8:59 pm
    In my research time today, I kept on the K2 proposal. I made the argument that we want K2 to point less well in Campaign 9 than it has in previous Campaigns, because we want the crowded field (which is in the Bulge of the Milky Way) to move significantly relative to the pixel grid. We need that redundancy (or heterogeneity?) for self-calibration. I hope that—if we get this proposal funded—we will also get influence over the spacecraft attitude management!
  • K2 flat-field

    25 Jun 2015 | 8:59 pm
    I spent my research time today working on my proposal for K2 Campaign 9. The proposal is to self-calibrate to get the flat-field, which is critical for crowded-field photometry (even if done via image differencing).
  • radical self-calibration

    24 Jun 2015 | 8:59 pm
    At group meeting, Fadely showed us plots that show that he can do what I call “radical” self-calibration with realistic (simulated) data from fields of stars. This is the kind of calibration where we figure out the flat-field and PSF simultaneously by insisting that the images we have could have been generated by point sources convolved with some pixel-convolved PSF. He also showed how the results degrade as our knowledge of the PSF gets wrong. We can withstand percent-ish problems with our PSF model, but we can't withstand tens-of-percent. That's interesting, and useful. I feel…
  • cavities

    23 Jun 2015 | 8:59 pm
    Total fail, although I spent time supporting New York's dental-health infrastructure.
  • Ekta Patel

    22 Jun 2015 | 8:59 pm
    The only research part of the day was a great lunch with ex-Camp-Hogger (is it possible to be "ex" from CampHogg?) Ekta Patel (Arizona), where she talked to us about research and graduate curriculum at Arizona. She is doing awesome research (on the LMC and Local Group satellites) right off the bat and loving the research focus of the course schedule at Arizona. I couldn't agree more! I pitched my ideas that sub-pixel flat issues could in principle be messing with the incredibly small proper motion measurements for the Local-Group satellites.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Astronomy Cmarchesin

  • Unexpectedly Little Black-hole Monsters Rapidly Suck up Surrounding Matter

    28 Jun 2015 | 8:00 pm
    Using the Subaru Telescope, researchers at the Special Astrophysical Observatory in Russia and Kyoto University in Japan have found evidence that enigmatic objects in nearby galaxies – called ultra-luminous X-ray sources (ULXs) – exhibit strong outflows that are created as matter falls onto their black holes at unexpectedly high rates. The strong outflows suggest that the black holes in these ULXs must be much smaller than expected. Curiously, these objects appear to be "cousins" of SS 433, one of the most exotic objects in our own Milky Way Galaxy. The team's observations help shed light…
  • Discovering a New Stage in the Galactic Lifecycle

    27 Jun 2015 | 8:10 pm
    Using ALMA, astronomers surveyed an array of normal galaxies seen when the Universe was only 1 billion years old. They detected the glow of ionized carbon filling the space between the stars, indicating these galaxies were fully formed but chemically immature, when compared to similar galaxies a few billion years later. The ALMA data for four of these galaxies is show in relation to objects in the COSMOS field taken with the Hubble Space Telescope. Credit: ALMA (NRAO/ESO/NAOJ), P. Capak; B. Saxton (NRAO/AUI/NSF), NASA/ESA HubbleOn its own, dust seems fairly unremarkable. However, by observing…
  • Star Formation Near Supermassive Black Holes

    27 Jun 2015 | 8:10 pm
    The bright radio galaxy 3C219. The blue object at the center is its active nucleus powered by a supermassive black hole; red shows the extent of the radio emission. Infrared observations of a complete set of similar galaxies dating from about seven billion years ago find that although star formation is active in these objects, the nuclear activity dominates the luminosity. Credit: NRAO and Parijskij et al.Most if not all galaxies are thought to host a supermassive black hole in their nuclei, a finding that is both one the most important and amazing in modern astronomy. A supermassive black…
  • Can Planets Be Rejuvenated Around Dead Stars?

    26 Jun 2015 | 8:10 pm
    This artist's concept shows a hypothetical "rejuvenated" planet -- a gas giant that has reclaimed its youthful infrared glow. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope found tentative evidence for one such planet around a dead star, or white dwarf, called PG 0010+280 (depicted as white dot in illustration). Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech.  › Full image and captionFor a planet, this would be like a day at the spa. After years of growing old, a massive planet could, in theory, brighten up with a radiant, youthful glow. Rejuvenated planets, as they are nicknamed, are only hypothetical. But new…
  • Monster black hole wakes up after 26 years

    26 Jun 2015 | 8:00 pm
    Black hole with stellar companionCopyright: ESA/ATG medialab Integral image before and after the outburstCopyright: ESA/Integral/IBIS/ISDCIntegral light curve Copyright: ESA/Integral/IBIS/ISDCOver the past week, ESA's Integral satellite has been observing an exceptional outburst of high-energy light produced by a black hole that is devouring material from its stellar companion.X-rays and gamma rays point to some of the most extreme phenomena in the Universe, such as stellar explosions, powerful outbursts and black holes feasting on their surroundings.In contrast to the peaceful view…
 
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    The Urban Astronomer

  • Three Summer Stars in the Milky Way

    27 Jun 2015 | 2:41 pm
    The arrival of the warm and long days of summer also marks the return of the Summer Triangle and three of the brightest stars in the night sky, Deneb, Altair and Vega. I wax poetically about these sparkling gems when I give a star talk during warm summer nights, with each of the three stars bringing us a unique perspective. All three are in or near the band of the Milky Way, so a close up look at these through binoculars reveals the depths of our home galaxy. This week the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) featured detailed descriptions of these stars and an excellent photograph shown here.
  • Approaching a Conjunction

    18 Jun 2015 | 2:15 pm
    Evening TrioEach day the planets Venus and Jupiter are drawing closer together in the evening sky, as Jupiter gradually sinks into the western twilight and Venus holds course. The two will have a close encounter (conjunction) on June 30th, but already the two are a striking pair in the evening sky, made more interesting by the waxing crescent Moon this weekend. Look for the trio just after sunset (around 8:45 pm in San Francisco) and watch them become more and more brilliant as the sunset sky turns to dusk and eventually to darkness.Image courtesy of Sky & Telescope.
  • Jupiter and Venus Closing In

    31 May 2015 | 3:08 pm
    Jupiter and VenusThe two brightest objects in the night sky (after the Moon) are closing in for a very close encounter in June. Each evening you can watch the gradual change as Jupiter descends in the west toward Venus. As both planets are on the same line of travel across the sky (the Ecliptic), they pass near each other typically once per year. This is going to happen in 2015 in late June. For now, check out the daily movement in the west after sunset. I'll write more about the close encounter in the month of June.Image courtesy Sky & Telescope.
  • Get Involved: Star Parties and Astronomy Lectures

    18 May 2015 | 12:08 am
    Each month, the public is welcome to join regional events affiliated with the San Francisco Amateur Astronomers (SFAA). The club supports local 'star parties' and hosts lectures of deep scientific interest. These events are free and open to the public.SFAA Lectures: Each month, the SFAA club meeting includes a lecture by a prominent astronomer or astrophysicist on a topic of general interest. Topics have included exo-planet research, dark matter, space telescopes, stellar research, and more. Check the SFAA website and join the club on the third Tuesday of each month at the Presidio of San…
  • The Springtime Constellation Bootes and M3

    29 Apr 2015 | 11:24 pm
    Bootes, Arcturus and M3Spring marks the arrival of the constellation Bootes and the brilliant orange giant star Arcturus. Looking east shortly after sunset, Arcturus is immediately visible as the brightest celestial object in that part of the sky, and Bootes is easy to spot alongside the star and bordering the Big Dipper.Bootes is an ancient constellation named for a herdsman, and it's his twin brother that drives the plough in the Big Dipper (as the constellation is referred to as a plough in some cultures). Bootes himself is marked by the familiar pattern to the right, sometimes called an…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    sci.astro

  • Re: CATASTROPHE IN PHYSICS... REPENTANCE?

    29 Jun 2015 | 12:46 pm
    http://perimeterinstitute.ca/news/celebrating-sixth-class-perimeter-scholars-international "Perimeter Director Neil Turok lauded the students for their ambition and dedication. "You've taken on probably the most difficult graduate program in physics worldwide," said Turok. "What we want PSI to b
  • CATASTROPHE IN PHYSICS... REPENTANCE?

    29 Jun 2015 | 9:33 am
    http://www2.macleans.ca/2013/09/05/perimeter-institute-and-the-crisis-in-modern-physics/ Neil Turok: "It's the ultimate catastrophe: that theoretical physics has led to this crazy situation where the physicists are utterly confused and seem not to have any predictions at all." http://blog.phys
  • Re: EINSTEIN'S SPECIAL RELATIVITY AS CORRUPT DEDUCTION

    29 Jun 2015 | 5:30 am
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwiayZ3sH7U Edward Teller: "Einstein didn't know what he was talking about..." ...or was just lying, or both. Here is the proof: In 1887 (prior to FitzGerald and Lorentz advancing the ad hoc length contraction hypothesis), the Michelson-Morley experiment unequi
  • Re: IMPENDING REVOLUTION IN PHYSICS

    29 Jun 2015 | 4:58 am
    The revolution is more than urgent - Einstein's 1905 false constant-speed-of-light postulate has converted science into a lunatic fairy tale: http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/Relativ/bugrivet.html "In an attempt to squash a bug in a 1 cm deep hole, a rivet is used. But the rivet is
  • Re: IS THERMODYNAMICS A DEAD SCIENCE?

    29 Jun 2015 | 1:05 am
    A second law-violating device I proposed in 2002: http://proceedings.aip.org/resource/2/apcpcs/643/1/430_1 AIP Conf. Proc. 643, pp. 430-435, Pentcho Valev 2002: "...as two vertical constant-charge capacitor plates partially dip into a pool of a liquid dielectric (e.g. water), the liquid betwee
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    uk.sci.astronomy

  • [SM] Dust-poor early galaxies

    26 Jun 2015 | 5:46 am
    From the «unlike the quantity of dust on this desk» department: Title: Dust-poor Early Galaxies Author: Camille M. Carlisle Date: Wed, 24 Jun 2015 13:03:12 -0400 Link: http://www.skyandtelescope.com/astronomy-news/dust-poor-early-galaxies-0624201523/ New ALMA observations reveal low levels of
  • [SM] Convergence of Venus & Jupiter

    26 Jun 2015 | 5:44 am
    From the «clearly this means the end of the world» department: Title: Venus and Jupiter: Together at Last Author: Kelly Beatty Date: Thu, 25 Jun 2015 12:10:29 -0400 Link: http://www.skyandtelescope.com/astronomy-news/observing-news/venus-and-jupiter-a-dazzling-duo-062520154/ The two brightest
  • Re: Philae comet lander wakes up

    17 Jun 2015 | 4:08 am
    Talk about serendipity. It has managed to sample and analyse samples from 3 landing sites , not just the intended one site. As long as the cliff/ crater rim does not collapse on it , then it will likely survive closest approach to the sun . That was not in the original plan as the electronics w
  • Re: SOLUTIONS MANUAL: Microelectronic Circuit Analysis and Design, 3rd Edition, by D. Neamen

    14 Jun 2015 | 9:58 pm
    Solution Manual Microelectronic Circuit Design (3rd Ed., Richard Jaeger & Travis Blalock) On Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:59:43 AM UTC-8, carter...@gmail.com wrote: > I have the instructor solution manuals to accompany mathematical, engineering, physical, chemical, financial textbooks, and oth
  • Philae comet lander wakes up

    14 Jun 2015 | 4:45 am
    BBC News report at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-33126885 Cheers, Alastair.
 
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Big Picture Science

  • What the Hack

    SETI Institute
    29 Jun 2015 | 7:40 am
    ENCORE  A computer virus that bombards you with pop-up ads is one thing. A computer virus that shuts down a city’s electric grid is another. Welcome to the new generation of cybercrime. Discover what it will take to protect our power, communication and transportation systems as scientists try to stay ahead of hackers in an ever-escalating game of cat and mouse. The expert who helped decipher the centrifuge-destroying Stuxnet virus tells us what he thinks is next. Also convenience vs. vulnerability as we connect to the Internet of Everything. And, the journalist who wrote that Google was…
  • Skeptic Check: Evolutionary Arms Race

    SETI Institute
    22 Jun 2015 | 7:36 am
    ENCORE It’s hard to imagine the twists and turns of evolution that gave rise to Homo Sapiens. After all, it required geologic time, and the existence of many long-gone species that were once close relatives. That may be one reason why – according to a recent poll – one-third of all Americans reject the theory of evolution. They prefer to believe that humans and other living organisms have existed in their current form since the beginning of time. But if you’ve ever been sick, you’ve been the victim of evolution on a very observable time scale. Nasty viruses and bacteria take full…
  • It's All Relative

    SETI Institute
    15 Jun 2015 | 7:22 am
    A century ago, Albert Einstein rewrote our understanding of physics with his Theory of General Relativity. Our intuitive ideas about space, time, mass, and gravity turned out to be wrong. Find out how this masterwork changed our understanding of how the universe works and why you can thank Einstein whenever you turn on your GPS. Also, high-profile experiments looking for gravitational waves and for black holes will put the theories of the German genius to the test – will they pass? And why the story of a box, a Geiger counter, and a zombie cat made Einstein and his friend Erwin…
  • And To Space We Return

    SETI Institute
    8 Jun 2015 | 7:31 am
    Earth may be the cradle of life, but our bodies are filled with materials cooked up billions of years ago in the scorching centers of stars. As Carl Sagan said, “We are all stardust.” We came from space, and some say it is to space we will return. Discover an astronomer’s quest to track down remains of these ancient chemical kitchens. Plus, a scientist who says that it’s in our DNA to explore – and not just the nearby worlds of the solar system, but perhaps far beyond. But would be still be human when we arrive? Hear what biological and cultural changes we might undergo in a…
  • Math's Days Are Numbered

    SETI Institute
    1 Jun 2015 | 7:41 am
    ENCORE  Imagine a world without algebra. We can hear the sound of school children applauding. What practical use are parametric equations and polynomials, anyway? Even some scholars argue that algebra is the Latin of today, and should be dropped from the mandatory curriculum. But why stop there? Maybe we should do away with math classes altogether. An astronomer says he’d be out of work: we can all forget about understanding the origins of the universe, the cycles of the moon and how to communicate with alien life. Also, no math = no cybersecurity + hackers (who have taken math) will have…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    StarDate

  • Bright Trios

    damonddb
    28 Jun 2015 | 10:00 pm
    Two bright trios dazzle in the evening sky tonight. One disappears fairly quickly, but the other remains in view for most of the night. The group that sets first is in the west as darkness falls: the planets Venus and Jupiter and the star Regulus. Venus and Jupiter are the brightest objects in the night sky other than the Moon, so you can’t miss them — especially for the next few nights, because they stand almost atop each other. Right now, the difference in their brightness is greater than average. Venus is just about as bright as it gets, while Jupiter is near its faintest, so Venus…
  • Stormy Skies

    damonddb
    27 Jun 2015 | 10:00 pm
    A giant storm swirls all the way around Saturn in this 2010 view from the Cassini spacecraft. Such storms have popped up in Saturn's atmosphere every few decades, and they can last for months. [NASA/JPL/SSI] Text ©2015 The University of Texas at Austin McDonald ObservatoryFor more skywatching tips, astronomy news, and much more, read StarDate magazine.
  • Moon and Saturn

    damonddb
    27 Jun 2015 | 10:00 pm
    The Moon and the planet Saturn snuggle quite close tonight. Saturn is just to the lower right of the Moon at nightfall, and looks like a bright star. Seen through a telescope, Saturn itself usually looks pretty bland. Its atmosphere is divided into bands that are tinted in subtle shades of yellow and tan. Storms twirl through those bands, but they’re difficult to see from Earth. Most of the time, that is. Every few decades, a giant storm bursts into view. Its white core is as big as Earth. And in months, it can stretch half way around the planet. The storms are like thunderstorms here on…
  • Deceptive Giant

    damonddb
    26 Jun 2015 | 10:00 pm
    Appearances can be deceiving — especially among the stars. For an example, look at the stars that mark the points of the Summer Triangle, which is in the east and northeast at nightfall. The brightest point is Vega, one of the brightest stars in the entire night sky. Yet Vega looks so bright in large part because it’s close by — only about 25 light-years away. The true luminary of the Summer Triangle is Deneb, which stands to the lower left of Vega during the evening hours. It’s probably a thousand times brighter than Vega, and tens of thousands of times brighter than the Sun.
  • Venus and Jupiter

    damonddb
    25 Jun 2015 | 10:00 pm
    Venus and Jupiter are heading toward an especially close rendezvous in the evening sky. They’re in the west at nightfall and shine like a pair of celestial headlights — they’re far brighter than any other planets or stars. Venus is the brilliant “evening star,” with fainter Jupiter not far to its upper left. Right now, the difference in their brightness is greater than average. Venus is just about as bright as it gets, while Jupiter is near its faintest, so Venus shines about 13 times brighter than Jupiter. Venus is near its peak because it’s getting ready to cross between Earth…
 
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Astronomy and Space News - Astro Watch

  • Precise Ages of Largest Number of Stars Hosting Planets Ever Measured

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    29 Jun 2015 | 1:38 pm
    Measuring the ages of stars is one of the very tough problems that contemporary astronomers are faced with. Up to now only the age of the Sun has been determined with high precision (it is 4.57 billion years, with a precision of 10 million years to each side). The international group of astronomers have determined ages, diameters, densities, masses and distances for 33 stars better than ever before. As an extra, all of these stars have earth-like planets, giving us a clear indication that such planets have formed in our Milky Way Galaxy long before the Earth and are still being formed out…
  • Paving Way for Mars Colonization

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    29 Jun 2015 | 3:00 am
    In order to send first human to Mars, plenty of pioneering activities must be taken. It’s a journey on an unprecedented scale in the history of human spaceflight, but like any other voyage, even the longest one, starts with a small, seemingly insignificant step. That’s what MarsPolar, a new international venture does recently to prepare for a challenging and bumpy road to the Red Planet.The project, based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates is constantly building its team and expands its advisedly-built web of future partners and sponsors. The reason is that a demanding trip to Mars would…
  • SpaceX's Falcon 9 Rocket Explodes Shortly After Launch

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    28 Jun 2015 | 1:37 pm
    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a Dragon cargo ship loaded with more than 4,000 pounds of supplies and equipment bound for the International Space Station -- including a critical docking adapter needed by future U.S. crew ships -- broke apart in a shower of debris shortly after launch Sunday in a major setback for NASA and the California rocket company. An anomaly occurred approximately two minutes 19 seconds into the seventh operational flight to the International Space Station (CRS-7). The launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex 40 in Florida, started right…
  • China Launches Gaofen-8 Earth-observing Satellite

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    28 Jun 2015 | 9:32 am
    China conducted Friday a surprise launch, sending to space a high-resolution Earth-imaging satellite Gaofen-8 on a Long March 4B rocket. The launch took place at 2:22 a.m. EDT (6:22 UTC) from the LC9 launch complex at the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in northern China’s Shanxi province. According to Chinese officials, Gaofen-8 is part of a civilian program and will provide general land surveys, disaster response, agriculture mapping, city planning, land ownership marking and road network planning. “Gao fen” means “high resolution” in English.The major users of the observation…
  • Japan Wants to Land a Probe on the South Pole of Moon

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    28 Jun 2015 | 6:31 am
    The science ministry plans to land an unmanned probe at the south pole of the moon in the early 2020s in an attempt to enhance Japan’s standing in the space exploration business. Examination of rocks at the pole could provide clues to the origin of the moon, and there is also the chance of water or ice being found that could be used for astronauts in future missions. “The plan is a top priority, and we should also weigh cooperating with the United States in proceeding with the project,” the ministry said in a report compiled June 25 by a panel of experts.Motoyuki Fujii, a senior vice…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Telescope Observer

  • Orion 9024 AstroView 90mm Equatorial Refractor Telescope

    Telescope Review Guide
    29 Jun 2015 | 1:12 pm
    Orion’s pleasing AstroView telescope is a 90mm equatorial refractor telescope. As such, it uses the refractor technology to produce clear images of the nighttime sky. Possessing strong reviews from other owners, and boasting strong optical specs and a sturdy design, it is an appealing choice for experienced and amateur astronomers alike. These features in combination… Read more The post Orion 9024 AstroView 90mm Equatorial Refractor Telescope appeared first on Telescope Observer.
  • Pirate Navigation Handheld Brass Telescope

    Telescope Review Guide
    28 Jun 2015 | 5:08 am
    The 6-inch handheld brass telescope from Pirate Navigation is a fun, beautifully crafted, functioning telescope. Popular as a gift for young children, this tiny telescope provides a creative way to enjoy far-off objects. It may also be used as a beautiful decorative piece for maritime collections, and as an entertaining accessory for any imaginative pirate… Read more The post Pirate Navigation Handheld Brass Telescope appeared first on Telescope Observer.
  • Celestron 21061 AstroMaster 70AZ Refractor Telescope

    Telescope Review Guide
    27 Jun 2015 | 12:48 pm
    The Celestron 21061 AstroMaster 70AZ refractor telescope is an excellent choice for amateur astronomers who wish to use one scope to view both the sky and the earth. The AstroMaster sports erect image optics to give you this versatility, a pre-assembled tripod and permanently attached StarPointer for ease of use, and an affordable price tag.… Read more The post Celestron 21061 AstroMaster 70AZ Refractor Telescope appeared first on Telescope Observer.
  • Review: Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope

    Telescope Review Guide
    23 Jun 2015 | 12:14 pm
    The SpaceProbe from Orion is a solid and relatively inexpensive telescope ideal for beginners to the hobby. It provides you with Orion’s clear and precise guidance for amateurs along with strong optical abilities to give you clear and engaging views of the nighttime sky. Praised by reviewers for the quality of its images, the SpaceProbe… Read more The post Review: Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope appeared first on Telescope Observer.
  • Best Telescopes Under $1,000

    Telescope Review Guide
    22 Jun 2015 | 12:44 pm
    There are many telescopes on the market today. Even limiting your budget to less than $1,000 can leave you with an overwhelming array from which to choose. However, there are a few characteristics that define the best of these scopes. For instance, large apertures, top notch refractor technology, strong optics, portability, and ease of assembly… Read more The post Best Telescopes Under $1,000 appeared first on Telescope Observer.
 
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Insight Observatory

  • Field of Planetary Dreams

    Michael Petrasko
    20 Jun 2015 | 10:00 am
    The youngest attendee getting her firstlook at the Moon through a telescope.On the evening of May 29, 2015, the Insight Observatory and Cotuit Library staff had the pleasure of hosting a planet observing session opened to the public in Cotuit, MA, a village of the town of Barnstable located on Cape Cod. The event was attended by around 20 people of all different ages and as young as 3 years old. These folks were eager to get their first telescopic view of the planets Venus, Jupiter, Saturn as well as the gibbous Moon as well as the gibbous Moon. Several telescopes that were provided by the…
  • Students Observe Venus, Jupiter and the Moon

    Michael Petrasko
    4 May 2015 | 5:30 am
    Students Prepare to Observe at the Observatory.The rewards of witnessing students acquire their first visual views and photographic images of Venus, Jupiter and the Moon are absolutely priceless. On the evening of Tuesday, April 28th, 2105, at 7:30pm EDT, 10 students from the Astronomy Club at the Sacred Heart School in Kingston, MA, gathered at the Kohout-Dingley Observatory located on the school's campus grounds. The goal for the evening was to observe and learn a little about Venus, Jupiter and the Moon through the observatory's 11" telescope with direction from staff members from Insight…
  • Methods for Observing the Lyrid Meteor Shower

    Michael Petrasko
    22 Apr 2015 | 6:41 am
    Lyrid meteor photographed back in the 2012 showerThis month’s Lyrid meteor shower isn't one of the year's strongest displays, and with Moon being in a thin, waxing crescent, it won't offer much competition. As with January’s Quadrantids, the Lyrids put on a fairly brief performance, and this year the predicted peak on April 22nd at 23:00 UT.The Lyrid meteors appear to radiate from a location near the Hercules-Lyra border, which is high in the sky from about 11 p.m. until dawn. The Lyrid meteor shower has been observed for more than 2,000 years; Chinese records say "stars fell like…
  • The March 2015 Solar Eclipse

    Muir Evenden
    11 Apr 2015 | 9:15 am
    The author's image of the March 20, 2015Solar Eclipse visible from Krakow, PolandWhen I heard that the March 20, 2015 total solar eclipse would be visible as a partial solar eclipse from Krakow, Poland, I had a dilemma: how can I observe this event when I possessed no adequate filter to protect my camera so I could photograph it? In the past I used to own a specialized solar filter made from mylar, and so I thought: what do I have now that has such a similar property? The answer was remarkably simple: a blank DVD. Luckily I possessed a blank DVD with no artwork on the top that might…
  • Astronomical Sketching

    Michael Petrasko
    28 Mar 2015 | 10:20 am
    Lunar Crater Gassendl Sketched by Achim RoheI guess its valid to say that this post is a follow-up to one of my most recent posts called "Keeping an Observing Log". Recently, I was searching for some good RSS Feed content for our Insight Observatory's blog and stumbled upon a website that is similar to NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day website. The difference is that its entitled "Astronomy Sketch of the Day" and features astronomical sketches of astronomical objects or phenomena observed in detail submitted by amateur astronomers around the globe. As I may have mentioned before in one…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Space Facts

  • Charon Facts

    Chris
    22 Jun 2015 | 5:40 am
    Charon is the largest and innermost moon of Pluto. It was discovered in 1978 by astronomer James Christy and is nearly 1/8 the mass of Pluto. It orbits a common centre of gravity with Pluto, and the two worlds are tidally locked together as they orbit. Charon Moon Profile Radius: 603.5 km Diameter: 1,207 km […] The post Charon Facts appeared first on Space Facts.
  • New Horizons Spacecraft & Mission Facts

    Chris
    18 Jun 2015 | 7:00 am
    NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft is on a mission to collect data and images of the dwarf planet Pluto, its surrounding moons and other objects in the Kuiper Belt. An earlier mission, named the Pluto Kuiper Express, was cancelled by NASA in 2000 due to funding issues, yet six years later the New Horizons mission was launched. Mission […] The post New Horizons Spacecraft & Mission Facts appeared first on Space Facts.
  • Exoplanet Facts

    Chris
    6 Jun 2015 | 4:32 am
    Exoplanets, also called “extrasolar planets” are worlds orbiting other stars. Thousands of possible exoplanets have been found through ground-based and space-based observatories. Nearly 2,000 have been confirmed; the rest are awaiting further observations so that astronomers can be sure that they are planets. Astronomers estimate that there could be trillions of planets around other stars. Facts […] The post Exoplanet Facts appeared first on Space Facts.
  • Milky Way Galaxy Facts

    Chris
    4 May 2015 | 4:54 am
    The Milky Way Galaxy is our home galaxy in the universe. It is a fairly typical barred spiral with four major arms in its disk, at least one spur, and a newly discovered outer arm. The galactic centre, which is located about 26,000 light-years from Earth, contains at least one supermassive black hole (called Sagittarius […] The post Milky Way Galaxy Facts appeared first on Space Facts.
  • Andromeda Galaxy Facts

    Chris
    3 May 2015 | 11:27 am
    The Andromeda Galaxy (M31) is the closest large galaxy to the Milky Way and is one of a few galaxies that can be seen unaided from the Earth. In approximately 4.5 billion years the Andromeda Galaxy and the Milky Way are expected to collide and the result will be a giant elliptical galaxy. Andromeda is accompanied […] The post Andromeda Galaxy Facts appeared first on Space Facts.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    GALAXYTHREADS

  • 10 Reasons Why Interstellar Travel Shouldn’t Happen

    Galaxy Threads
    24 Jun 2015 | 12:15 am
    The stars above us are a beauty that men have fashioned whole mythologies around. They are truly a sight to behold, and now that we have extended our reach to the moon, the natural progression is that we might want to travel ‘to the stars’. Such travel is a basic part of countless science fiction stories and films, and many might come away with the impression that interstellar travel is an easy task, perhaps just around the corner for the wit of man. Sadly, there are a few serious problems which must be addressed first. 10. Faster than Light. Many stories include zany explanations…
  • What You Should Know About The First Female Commander Of The Space Shuttle

    Galaxy Threads
    17 Jun 2015 | 6:33 am
    Lt. Colonel Eileen Collins is the second woman known to have graduated as a test pilot and the first woman to pilot a space shuttle mission. She was selected as an astronaut in the 1990 and her first space shuttle mission was the Discovery’s visit to the Russian-Mir Space Station in the 1995. She had completed a total of 419 hours in space. She is also looked upon as one of the pioneers in the world of aviation. Here are some astounding facts about Lt. Col. Collins. 1. Collins was born in Elmira in New York in 1956 to a working class family of little means. 2. Eileen wanted to become a…
  • Top 10 Amazing Moons In The Solar System

    Galaxy Threads
    10 Jun 2015 | 9:12 am
    Our solar system has over 200 moons orbiting planets, dwarf planets and asteroids. Of the moons our solar system supports, there are many that have amazing features. Here is a look at 10 of the most amazing moons our solar system has to offer:   10. Nereid – Neptune Nereid was discovered in 1940 by Gerard Kuiper. It is Neptune’s third largest moon. It has the most eccentric orbit of any moon in our solar system. Because of this, the distance between Nereid and Neptune vary greatly. At its closest, Nereid is a mere 841,100 miles away from Neptune. At it’s farthest, it’s…
  • 10 Facts You Should Know About Neil Armstrong

    Galaxy Threads
    9 Jun 2015 | 8:15 am
    Neil Armstrong the legendary astronaut was born In Wakaponeta, Ohio, on the 5th of August, 1930. Neil was the first man in history to walk on the moon on July 21st 1969. This was where he uttered the now famous words ‘One small step for Man, One giant leap for Mankind.’ Neil passed away on the 25th August 2012 at the age of 82. Here are 10 other facts about the legendary astronaut that you should know: 1. Neil Armstrong the first man who walked on the moon did so from the Eagle lunar landing ship. 2. The first statement made by Neil Armstrong became one of the well-known…
  • Top 10 Tallest Known Mountains In The Solar System

    Galaxy Threads
    1 Jun 2015 | 5:21 am
    Everyone thinks that Mt. Everest is big, which isn’t even the biggest mountain on Earth FYI. The biggest mountain on Earth is Mt. Mauna Kea in Hawaii, much of which is below sea level, from ocean floor to peak it’s more than twice the size of Everest. But the monsters in our solar system make even Mauna Kea look like an adolescent pup. The Tallest Mountains In Our Solar System: 10. Limb Mountain. Limb Mountain, located on Oberon a moon of Uranus is the 10th largest known mountain in the solar system. It’s a sizable 11km high (about 7 miles). Oberon is the outermost major…
 
Log in