Astronomy

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  • Losing the Comet but Winning the Ring

    Astronomy Today
    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…
  • A Crescent Mimas

    Astronomy News
    Tom
    17 Sep 2014 | 9:48 pm
    The crescent of the battered Mimas. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute The Saturn moon Mimas was the target of Cassini’s cameras. One of the striking features of the moon is a crater known as Herschel. Herschel can be seen in the shadows at about the five o’clock position. More about Mimas and a great look at the crater Herschel can be found here. About the image from the Cassini site: A thin sliver of Mimas is illuminated, the long shadows showing off its many craters, indicators of the moon’s violent history. The most famous evidence of a collision on Mimas…
  • Completely Clandestine CLIO Climbs through Clouds to Orbit on Mystery Mission

    Universe Today
    Ken Kremer
    17 Sep 2014 | 6:09 pm
    United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket carrying the CLIO mission for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company launched at 8:10 p.m. EDT September 16, 2014 from Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. Credit: Ken Kremer – kenkremer.com CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, FL – On a gloomy night and delayed by rain showers and thick threatening clouds to the very last moment of a two and a half launch window, the completely clandestine satellite known only as CLIO climbed slowly from a Cape Canaveral launch pad atop the thunderous flames of an Atlas V rocket…
  • The Sky This Week - Thursday September 18 to Thursday September 25

    Astroblog
    16 Sep 2014 | 6:45 am
    The New Moon is Wednesday September 24. Mercury meets the bright star Spica. Mars enters the head of the Scorpion. Mars and Saturn are prominent in the evening sky forming a line with Mercury and two bright stars. Jupiter becomes more prominent in the morning sky and is visited by the Moon on the 20th. Comets C/2013 A1 Siding Spring and C/2013 V5 are in the reach of small telescopes.  The New Moon is Wednesday September 24. The Moon is at apogee (furthest from the Earth) on the 20th.Evening sky on Saturday September 20 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 19:00 (7:00 pm) ACST in South…
  • AstroData Hack Week, day 2

    Hogg's Research
    16 Sep 2014 | 8:59 pm
    The day started with Huppenkothen (Amsterdam) and I meeting at a café to discuss what we were going to talk about in the tutorial part of the day. We quickly got derailed to talking about replacing periodograms and auto-correlation functions with Gaussian Processes for finding and measuring quasi-periodic signals in stars and x-ray binaries. We described the simplest possible project and vowed to give it a shot when she arrives at NYU in two months. Immediately following this conversation, we each talked for more than an hour about classical statistics. I focused on the value of standard,…
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    Astronomy Today

  • 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…
  • Up for the Lunar Eclipse

    Kelly
    30 Apr 2014 | 6:14 am
    The Moon in Eclipse with Mars and Spica, April 2014 As a chronic insomniac, I didn’t feel the need to set my alarm for the April lunar eclipse. Just the night before I had been awake from 3:45 to 5:30, so I figured that there was a good chance that sometime within the window of the eclipse I would be awake. At my location, totality would last from 2:07 to 3:25 a.m. with partial phases for an hour on either side of that. Surely I would be awake for some of it. I was actually deep asleep around 2:15 a.m. when my phone buzzed beside me three times. Someone who follows my twitter feed was…
 
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    Astronomy News

  • A Crescent Mimas

    Tom
    17 Sep 2014 | 9:48 pm
    The crescent of the battered Mimas. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute The Saturn moon Mimas was the target of Cassini’s cameras. One of the striking features of the moon is a crater known as Herschel. Herschel can be seen in the shadows at about the five o’clock position. More about Mimas and a great look at the crater Herschel can be found here. About the image from the Cassini site: A thin sliver of Mimas is illuminated, the long shadows showing off its many craters, indicators of the moon’s violent history. The most famous evidence of a collision on Mimas…
  • Dawn Update

    Tom
    16 Sep 2014 | 10:13 pm
    An artist concept of Dawn. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA On 11 September, the Dawn spacecraft en route to the dwarf planet Ceres after visiting Vesta went into safe-mode when apparently an electrical component was disabled by a high-energy particle of radiation. A similar situation occurred three years ago and this time they followed the same strategy: swap of the other ion engines and a different controller so they could continue thrusting. A plan is in place to revive the disabled component. This time around there as a second anomaly that impaired the ability to point the…
  • Site J for Philae

    Tom
    15 Sep 2014 | 9:52 pm
    The landing site for Rosetta’s Philae lander. Click for a close-up. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA If you live in the US, you may not have heard the news: Rosetta’s Philae lander is going to be landing at Site J, shown in the above ESA image. Click the image for a close-up view of the landing site. Why Site J? ESA explains some of the considerations: Site J offers the minimum risk to the lander in comparison to the other candidate sites, and is also scientifically interesting, with signs of activity nearby. At Site J, the majority of…
  • IC559

    Tom
    14 Sep 2014 | 9:51 pm
    IC 559 from Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3. Image credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA, D. Calzetti (UMass) and the LEGUS Team While we wait for the Rosetta news of the Philea landing site, let’s have a look at Hubble’s image of IC 559. IC 559 is observable, barely. It is a small galaxy with a magnitude 14.2; yes you will need a decent telescope and very dark skies. A CCD would help greatly. Want to try? Point to: RA: 09h 45m 30s Dec: +09°32’50”. Wait until October when it will rise before daylight. I have not been able to identify the reddish structure below IC559 also in…
  • Choosing a Landing Site

    Tom
    14 Sep 2014 | 3:52 am
    Which of the five locations on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko will ESA choose to put Rosetta’s Philae lander? The video offers some insight into the selection process. The official announcement is coming tomorrow. Video
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    Universe Today

  • Completely Clandestine CLIO Climbs through Clouds to Orbit on Mystery Mission

    Ken Kremer
    17 Sep 2014 | 6:09 pm
    United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket carrying the CLIO mission for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company launched at 8:10 p.m. EDT September 16, 2014 from Space Launch Complex-41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. Credit: Ken Kremer – kenkremer.com CAPE CANAVERAL AIR FORCE STATION, FL – On a gloomy night and delayed by rain showers and thick threatening clouds to the very last moment of a two and a half launch window, the completely clandestine satellite known only as CLIO climbed slowly from a Cape Canaveral launch pad atop the thunderous flames of an Atlas V rocket…
  • Radiation Blast Delays NASA Spacecraft’s Arrival At Dwarf Planet Ceres

    Elizabeth Howell
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:13 am
    Artist’s conception of the NASA Dawn spacecraft approaching Ceres. Credit: NASA NASA’s Dawn spacecraft experienced technical problems in the past week that will force it to arrive at dwarf planet Ceres one month later than planned, the agency said in a statement yesterday (Sept. 16). Controllers discovered Dawn was in safe mode Sept. 11 after radiation disabled its ion engine, which uses electrical fields to “push” the spacecraft along. The radiation stopped all engine thrusting activities. The thrusting resumed Monday (Sept. 15) after controllers identified and fixed…
  • Giveaway: Win a Copy of “Astrophotography” by Thierry Legault

    Nancy Atkinson
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:56 am
    ‘Astrophotography’ by Thierry Legault, now in English. Image courtesy Rocky Nook. A newly published English version of the book, “Astrophotography” by Thierry Legault provides detailed, step-by-step instructions of how to start or improve your photography of astronomical objects. But this is not just a dry manual: Legault tells stories and explains details in a manner that seems like he is talking directly to you, and he shares the expertise he has garnered from over 20 years of amateur astrophotography. You can read our full review of the book here. Universe Today is proud to…
  • Surprise! Tiny Galaxy Sports A Huge Black Hole, And There Could Be More Like It

    Elizabeth Howell
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:36 am
    Artist’s conception of a supermassive black hole in a galaxy’s center. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech In a finding that could turn supermassive black hole formation theories upside-down, astronomers have spotted one of these beasts inside a tiny galaxy just 157 light-years across — about 500 times smaller than the Milky Way. The clincher will be if the team can find more black holes like it, and that’s something they’re already starting to work on after the discovery inside of galaxy M60-UCD1. The ultracompact galaxy is one of only about 50 known to astronomers in the…
  • Book Review: Learn from the Master with “Astrophotography” by Thierry Legault

    Nancy Atkinson
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:25 am
    ‘Astrophotography’ by Thierry Legault, now in English. Image courtesy Rocky Nook. If you’re looking for detailed, step-by-step instructions of how to start or improve your photography of astronomical objects, look no further. Astrophotographer Thierry Legault shares the expertise he has garnered from over 20 years of “amateur” photography in his newly translated book titled simply — and appropriately — “Astrophotography.” (...)Read the rest of Book Review: Learn from the Master with “Astrophotography” by Thierry Legault (1,531…
 
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    Astroblog

  • The Sky This Week - Thursday September 18 to Thursday September 25

    16 Sep 2014 | 6:45 am
    The New Moon is Wednesday September 24. Mercury meets the bright star Spica. Mars enters the head of the Scorpion. Mars and Saturn are prominent in the evening sky forming a line with Mercury and two bright stars. Jupiter becomes more prominent in the morning sky and is visited by the Moon on the 20th. Comets C/2013 A1 Siding Spring and C/2013 V5 are in the reach of small telescopes.  The New Moon is Wednesday September 24. The Moon is at apogee (furthest from the Earth) on the 20th.Evening sky on Saturday September 20 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 19:00 (7:00 pm) ACST in South…
  • Comet C/2013A1 Siding Spring and Galaxy NGC 6744

    14 Sep 2014 | 6:17 am
    Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring and the galaxy NGC 6744. Click to embiggen.Image is a SUMMED stack of 9 x 60 second images taken with iTelescope T12.Image significantly affected byMoon light, but still not bad.
  • Comet C/2013 A1 12 September 2014

    13 Sep 2014 | 2:27 am
    C/2013 A1 on 12 September 10:12 pm ACST. Image is a MEDIAN stack of 5x60 second luminance exposures taken with iTelescope T9, with light contrast enhancement. Click to embiggen.C/2013 A1 on 12 September 10:12 pm ACST. Image is a SUMMED stack of 5x60 second luminance exposures taken with iTelescope T9, with light contrast enhancement. Click to embiggen.C/2013 A1 on 24 March, much dimmer than now.Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring has passed it's closest approach to Earth and will now slowly fade as it heads for its close approach to Mars on October 19.While it never got very bright it still looks…
  • Saturn, Mars and Antares, 12 September 2014

    12 Sep 2014 | 6:23 am
    Zubenelgenubi, Saturn, the middle star of the Scorpions head (Dschubba), Mars and Antares all line up in this image of the Constellation of Scorpios. Click to embiggen.Stack of 10 x 15 second exposures with my Canon IXUS (ASA 400).During the week Mars will come closer to Dschubba. The dark rifts of the Milky way show up nicely for a light polluted suburb.
  • Aurora Watch Friday 12 September, 2014

    11 Sep 2014 | 7:32 am
    A double impact is expected from a glancing blow from a Coronal Mass Ejection from an M class flare, and a nearly full on impact from a CME from an X class flare during this coming Friday.The Australian IPS has released an aurora watch for Friday (12 September) to early Saturday (13 September). If aurora occur, this may be visible in Tasmania, New Zealand, and possibly Southern Vic, WA and Southern South Australia.If conditions are right aurora might even extend further north. However, geomagnetic storms are fickle, and the storm may arrive in daylight or well after Moon rise, or may fizzle…
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    Hogg's Research

  • AstroData Hack Week, day 2

    16 Sep 2014 | 8:59 pm
    The day started with Huppenkothen (Amsterdam) and I meeting at a café to discuss what we were going to talk about in the tutorial part of the day. We quickly got derailed to talking about replacing periodograms and auto-correlation functions with Gaussian Processes for finding and measuring quasi-periodic signals in stars and x-ray binaries. We described the simplest possible project and vowed to give it a shot when she arrives at NYU in two months. Immediately following this conversation, we each talked for more than an hour about classical statistics. I focused on the value of standard,…
  • AstroData Hack Week, day 1

    15 Sep 2014 | 8:59 pm
    On my way to Seattle, I wrote up a two-page document about inferring the velocity distribution when you only get (perhaps noisy, perhaps censored) measurements of v sin i. When I arrived at the AstroData Hack Week, I learned that Foreman-Mackey and Price-Whelan had both come to the same conclusion that this would be a valuable and achievable hack for the week. Price-Whelan and I spent hacking time specifying the project better.That said, Foreman-Mackey got excited about doing a good job on K2 point-source photometry. We talked out the components of such a model and tried to find the…
  • GRB beaming, classifying stars

    12 Sep 2014 | 8:59 pm
    Andy Fruchter (STScI) gave the astrophysics seminar, on gamma-ray bursts and their host galaxies. He showed Modjaz's (and others) results on the metallicities of "broad-line type IIc" supernovae, which show that the ones associated with gamma-ray bursts are in much lower-metallicity environments than those not associated. I always react to this result by pointing out that this ought to put a very strong constraint on GRB beaming, because (if there is beaming) there ought to be "off-axis" bursts that we don't see as GRBs, but that we do see as a BLIIc. Both Fruchter and Modjaz claimed that the…
  • single-example learning

    11 Sep 2014 | 5:29 pm
    I pitched projects to new graduate students in the Physics and Data Science programs today; hopefully some will stick. Late in the day, I took out new Data Science Fellow Brenden Lake (NYU) for a beer, along with Brian McFee (NYU) and Foreman-Mackey. We discussed many things, but we were blown away by Lake's experiments on single-instance learning: Can a machine learn to identify or generate a class of objects from seeing only a single example? Humans are great at this but machines are not. He showed us comparisons between his best machines and experimental subjects found on the Mechanical…
  • crazy diversity of stars; cosmological anomalies

    10 Sep 2014 | 8:59 pm
    At CampHogg group meeting (in the new NYU Center for Data Science space!), Sanderson (Columbia) talked about her work on finding structure through unsupervised clustering methods, and Price-Whelan talked about chaotic orbits and the effect of chaos on the streams in the Milky Way. Dun Wang blew us all away by showing us the amazing diversity of Kepler light-curves that go into his effective model of stellar and telescope variability. Even in a completely random set of a hundred light-curves you get eclipsing binaries, exoplanet transits, multiple-mode coherent pulsations, incoherent…
 
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    Astronomy Cmarchesin

  • Hubble Helps Find Smallest Known Galaxy with a Supermassive Black HoleDwarf Galaxy Near M60

    17 Sep 2014 | 8:10 pm
    Artist's Concept of Giant Black Hole in Center of Ultracompact Galaxy Illustration Credit: NASA ESA, and D. Coe and G. Bacon (STScIRelease Images  Dwarf Galaxy Near M60Credit: NASA ESA, and the Hubble Heritage STScIAURAESA/Hubble Collaboration.Acknowledgment: J. Tonry (University of Hawaii), P. Cote (Dominion Astrophysical Observatory), and G. Fabbiano (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics). Astronomers have found an unlikely object in an improbable place: a monster black hole lurking inside one of the tiniest galaxies known.Though the black hole is five times the mass of the…
  • Pulse of a Dead Star Powers Intense Gamma Rays

    17 Sep 2014 | 8:00 pm
    The blue dot in this image marks the spot of an energetic pulsar -- the magnetic, spinning core of star that blew up in a supernova explosion. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SAO.  Full image and caption Our Milky Way galaxy is littered with the still-sizzling remains of exploded stars. When the most massive stars explode as supernovas, they don't fade into the night, but sometimes glow ferociously with high-energy gamma rays. What powers these energetic stellar remains?NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, is helping to untangle the mystery. The observatory's…
  • Violent Origins of Disc Galaxies Probed by ALMA

    17 Sep 2014 | 2:06 am
    PR Image eso1429aDistribution of molecular gas in 30 merging galaxies  VideosPR Video eso1429aMerger between two galaxies (artist’s impression) New observations explain why Milky Way-like galaxies are so common in the Universe For decades scientists have believed that galaxy mergers usually result in the formation of elliptical galaxies. Now, for the the first time, researchers using ALMA and a host of other radio telescopes have found direct evidence that merging galaxies can instead form disc galaxies, and that this outcome is in fact quite common. This surprising result could…
  • WASP-18: NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory Finds Planet That Makes Star Act Deceptively Old

    16 Sep 2014 | 8:00 pm
    WASP-18 Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/I.Pillitteri et al; Optical: DSS; Illustration: NASA/CXC/M.WeissJPEG (1.4 MB) Large JPEG (12.3 MB) Tiff (93.8 MB) More Images A new study using data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has shown that a planet is making the star that it orbits act much older than it actually is, as explained in our latest press release. The artist's illustration featured in the main part of this graphic depicts the star, WASP-18, and its planet, WASP-18b. WASP-18b is a "hot Jupiter," a giant exoplanet that orbits very close to its star, located about 330 light years…
  • Cold Gas in the Pipe Nebula

    16 Sep 2014 | 5:32 am
     One portion of the vast dark cloud of interstellar dust called the Pipe Nebula (shown here is the object Barnard 59). The Pipe Nebula is known for being massive, and so a likely candidate for young stars, yet it is cold and dark with few signs of star formation. Astronomers have observed fifty-two dense cores in the Pipe in six key interstellar molecules using millimeter telescopes, and find clump temperatures as low as thirteen kelvin. Credit: ESOThe Pipe Nebula is a prominent dark molecular cloud located about 430 light-years from us. It contains about ten thousand solar-masses of…
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    The Urban Astronomer

  • 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.
  • KFOG Broadcast - August 12, 2014

    22 Aug 2014 | 8:59 am
    I paid a visit to the KFOG Morning Show and had a fun chat with Renee about the Supermoon, Perseid Meteor Shower, How to Look At The Night Sky, and Star Parties in and around San Francisco. Click here to listen. 
  • Jupiter & Venus Conjunction – Closest Approach Since 2000

    14 Aug 2014 | 4:08 pm
    After the Moon, the two brightest objects in the night sky are the planets Venus and Jupiter. Venus is a close neighbor and a very reflective planet, dominating morning and evening skies with its brilliant white shimmer against the changing colors of the dawn or dusk sky. Jupiter is the giant planet of the Solar System and despite its distance, is a bold and bright object for us to enjoy, especially in a telescope or binoculars. Venus & Jupiter ConjunctionThese two planets, like all of the objects in the Solar System, gradually change their position with respect to the background stars…
  • Perseid Meteor Shower 2014 - what to expect

    10 Aug 2014 | 7:00 am
    This year’s Perseid Meteor Shower will peak on August 11-12-13 and should offer up a moderately pleasing view of meteors but will be impacted by the nearly Full Moon. Meteors come in all sizes and shapes and during a reliable shower like the Perseids, you can see them all. However, moonlight increases the ambient lighting of the entire night sky and consequently makes the faint meteors all but invisible. The medium-strength meteors and the fireballs will shine through the glare of course, so the Perseids will have a showing, but just not at the rate we often see during a truly dark sky…
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    sci.astro

  • Re: EINSTEIN'S LIGHT POSTULATE : THE MOST UNAMBIGUOUS TEST ?

    18 Sep 2014 | 12:29 am
    If the Alväger experiment is the most unambiguous confirmation of Einstein's 1905 constant-speed-of-light postulate, then the "cosmic conspiracy of the highest order" is human conspiracy par excellence: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/physics/special-relativity-nutshell.html Brian Greene: "If space a
  • EINSTEIN'S LIGHT POSTULATE : THE MOST UNAMBIGUOUS TEST ?

    17 Sep 2014 | 11:53 pm
    http://galileoandeinstein.physics.virginia.edu/lectures/michelson.html Michael Fowler, University of Virginia: "There is another obvious possibility, which is called the emitter theory: the light travels at 186,300 miles per second relative to the source of the light. The analogy here is between li
  • Re: EINSTEIN'S ORIGINAL LIE

    17 Sep 2014 | 9:33 am
    An even more blatant lie in 1920: http://www.bartleby.com/173/23.html Albert Einstein: "An observer who is sitting eccentrically on the disc K' is sensible of a force which acts outwards in a radial direction... (...) The observer performs experiments on his circular disc with clocks and measuring
  • PARADOXE DE JEAN EISENSTAEDT

    17 Sep 2014 | 7:18 am
    Bien que la théorie de l'émission de Newton soit basée sur un postulat faux ("la vitesse de la lumière varie avec la vitesse de l'émetteur"), elle prédit correctement tous les effets lumineux. De plus, sa version finale développée à la fin du XVIIIème siècle est "infiniment plus intéressante - et pl
  • HELLO, CAPITOL HILL? IS ANYONE HOME?

    17 Sep 2014 | 3:03 am
    It's been 19 days since Sen. Jay Rockefeller and Rep. Lamar Smith were informed about the greatest conspiracy in the history of History, To wit, the discovery of petrified human remains between anthracite coal veins in Pennsylvania. And, much more importantly, they were informed about the Scientif
 
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    Big Picture Science

  • Skeptic Check: Is It True?

    15 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    We often hear fantastic scientific claims that would change everything if true. Such as the report that algae is growing on the outside of the International Space Station or that engineers have built a rocket that requires no propellant to accelerate. We examine news stories that seem too sensational to be valid, yet just might be – including whether a killer asteroid has Earth’s name on it. Plus, a journalist investigates why people hold on to their beliefs even when the evidence is stacked hard against them – from skepticism about climate change to Holocaust denial. And, why…
  • A Sudden Change in Planets

    8 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    A planet is a planet is a planet. Unless it’s Pluto – then it’s a dwarf planet. But even then it’s a planet, according to experts. So what was behind the unpopular re-classification of Pluto by astronomers, and were they justified? As the New Horizons spacecraft closes in on this small body, one planetary scientist says that this dwarf planet could be more typical of planets than Mars, Mercury, and Saturn. And that our solar system has not 8 or even 9 planets, but 900. Also, meet a type of planet that’s surprisingly commonplace, although we don’t have one in our solar system:…
  • Welcome to Our Labor-atory

    1 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    ENCORE Hi ho, hi ho … it’s out with work we go! As you relax this holiday weekend, step into our labor-atory and imagine a world with no work allowed. Soft robots help us with tasks at home and at the office, while driverless cars allow us to catch ZZZZs in the front seat. Plus, the Internet of Everything interconnects all your devices, from your toaster to your roaster to … you. So there’s no need to ever get off the couch. But is a machine-ruled world a true utopia? And, the invention that got us into our 24/7 rat race: Edison’s electric light. Guests: Barry Trimmer –…
  • ZZZZZs Please

    25 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    ENCORE We’ve all hit the snooze button when the alarm goes off, but why do we crave sleep in the first place? We explore the evolutionary origins of sleep … the study of narcolepsy in dogs … and could novel drugs and technologies cut down on our need for those zzzzs. Plus, ditch your dream journal: a brain scanner may let you record – and play back – your dreams. And, branch out with the latest development in artificial light: bioluminescent trees. How gene tinkering may make your houseplants both grow and glow. Guests: Emmanuel Mignot – Professor of psychiatry and behavioral…
  • Moving Right Along

    18 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    You think your life is fast-paced, but have you ever seen a bacterium swim across your countertop? You’d be surprised how fast they can move. Find out why modeling the swirl of hurricanes takes a roomful of mathematicians and supercomputers, and how galaxies can move away from us faster than the speed of light. Also, what happens when we try to stop the dance of atoms, cooling things down to the rock bottom temperature known as absolute zero. And why your watch doesn’t keep the same time when you’re in a jet as when you’re at the airport. It’s all due to the fact that motion is…
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    StarDate Online

  • Moon and Companions

    damonddb
    17 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    The Moon has a couple of bright companions before dawn tomorrow. The brilliant planet Jupiter stands to the lower left of the Moon, with the star Procyon a little farther to the Moon’s right or upper right. Procyon is the brightest star of Canis Minor, the little dog, which represents one of the hunting dogs of nearby Orion, the hunter. The other hunting dog is well to the lower right of Procyon — Canis Major, the big dog. It contains the “Dog Star” Sirius, the brightest true star in all the night sky. Sirius and Procyon are quite similar. Both stars are bigger, heavier, and hotter…
  • John Goodricke

    damonddb
    16 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    A star with a demonic reputation climbs the northeastern sky this evening. Algol represents the head of Medusa, a monster that’s part of the constellation Perseus. The star periodically fades and brightens, which may have helped inspire its reputation. The person who first proposed why the star acts so oddly was born 250 years ago today. John Goodricke came from a well-to-do family. That was important because while he was quite young, Goodricke was afflicted with a disease that left him completely deaf. But his family was able to send him to one of the few schools for the deaf, in Scotland.
  • Through the Glow

    damonddb
    16 Sep 2014 | 1:00 pm
    A brilliant aurora glows around the International Space Station in this image snapped in early September by European astronaut Alexander Gerst. An aurora occurs when electrically charged particles from the Sun zap atoms and molecules in the upper reaches of Earth's atmosphere, causing them to emit energy. The green color comes from oxygen, while the red can come from either oxygen or nitrogen. The space station orbits at an altitude of more than 250 miles (400 km), which is at or beyond the upper edge of most aurorae. [NASA/ESA] Text ©2014 The University of Texas at Austin McDonald…
  • The Next Wave

    damonddb
    15 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    The next wave of Mars explorers should be getting ready to enter orbit around the Red Planet. A NASA mission will arrive on Sunday night, with a craft from India following three days later. The two missions share a scientific goal — to better understand how Mars lost its water and most of its atmosphere over the past few billion years. NASA’s an old hand at the Mars exploration business. Its first successful mission took place almost 50 years ago. The agency has launched roughly a score of missions in all, and about three-quarters have succeeded. India, on the other hand, is a Mars…
  • Supervolcanoes

    damonddb
    14 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Mars boasts plenty of features an Earthling would recognize, including deserts, canyons, and polar ice caps. And planetary scientists recently discovered another similarity. Mars once had supervolcanoes like the one that erupted more than 600,000 years ago in what is now Yellowstone National Park. These dramatic eruptions may have altered the Red Planet’s climate — for better or for worse. Prior to this discovery, scientists already knew that Mars had mighty volcanoes — some of them are far taller and wider than any on Earth. But the newfound supervolcanoes erupted so violently that…
 
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    Remanzacco Observatory - Comets & Neo

  • 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…
  • New Comet: C/2014 Q3 (BORISOV)

    Team
    25 Aug 2014 | 2:24 am
    Cbet nr. 3936, issued on 2014, August 24, announces the discovery of a comet (magnitude ~17) by G. Borisov (Observatory MARGO, Nauchnij) on CCD images obtained with a 0.3-m f/1.5 astrograph telescope on 2014, August 22.02. The new comet has been designated C/2014 Q3 (BORISOV).We performed follow-up measurements of this object, while it was still on the neocp. Stacking of 10 unfiltered exposures, 60-sec each, obtained remotely on 2014, August 23.4 from H06 (iTelescope network - Mayhill) through a 0.50-m f/6.8 astrograph + CCD + f/4.5 focal reducer, shows that this object is a comet: coma about…
  • Rosetta has arrived at comet 67P!

    Team
    6 Aug 2014 | 5:26 am
    After an epic 10-year journey, the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft arrived today August 06, 2014 at comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko becoming the first spacecraft to rendezvous with a comet.  Launched in March 2004, Rosetta had to make three gravity-assist flybys of Earth and one of Mars to help it on course to its rendezvous with the comet. This complex course also allowed Rosetta to pass by asteroids Šteins and Lutetia, obtaining unprecedented views and scientific data on these two objects. Rosetta woke up from deep space hibernation on 20 January 2014, nine million…
  • New Comet: C/2014 N3 (NEOWISE)

    Team
    13 Jul 2014 | 8:44 am
    Cbet nr. 3921, issued on 2014, July 13, announces the discovery of a comet (~ magnitude 17) by the  Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (or NEOWISE; formerly the WISE satellite) team on images taken with the NEOWISE satellite on 2014, July 04.5. The new comet has been designated C/2014 N3 (NEOWISE).We performed follow-up measurements of this object, while it was still on the neocp. Stacking of 10 unfiltered exposures, 60-sec each, obtained remotely on 2014, July 09.6 from Q62 (iTelescope network - Siding Spring) through a 0.50-m f/6.8 astrograph + CCD + focal reducer,…
  • Close Approach of PHA Asteroid 2014 MF6

    Team
    9 Jul 2014 | 4:27 am
    The asteroid 2014 MF6 was discovered (at magnitude ~17.0) on 2014, June 23.3 by Catalina Sky Survey (MPC code 703) with a 0.68-m Schmidt + CCD. According to the preliminay orbit, 2014 MF6 is an Apollo type asteroid. This class of asteroids are defined by having semi-major axes greater than that of the Earth (> 1 AU) but perihelion distances less than the Earth's aphelion distance (q < 1.017 AU). It is also flagged as a "Potentially Hazardous Asteroid". PHA are asteroids larger than approximately 100m that might have threatening close approaches to the Earth (they can come closer to…
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    Astronomy and Space News - Astro Watch

  • Texas Airport Receives Spaceport License

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    18 Sep 2014 | 3:08 am
    In a joint release Wednesday, the Midland International Airport in Texas, Midland Development Corporation, XCOR Aerospace and Orbital Outfitters announced the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval of a Commercial Space Launch Site License (Spaceport) for the Midland International Airport (MAF). Midland International Airport is the first primary commercial service airport to be certified by the FAA under the Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 420 as a spaceport and will furthermore be referred to as the Midland International Air & Space Port. “It’s an important day for not…
  • NASA Releases IRIS Footage of X-class Flare

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    18 Sep 2014 | 2:40 am
    On Sept. 10, 2014, NASA's newest solar observatory, the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS, mission joined other telescopes to witness an X-class flare – an example of one of the strongest solar flares -- on the sun. Combing observations from more than one telescope helps create a much more complete picture of such events on our closest star. Watch the movie to see how the flare appears different through the eyes of IRIS than it does through NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. The movie shows IRIS imagery focused in on material at around 60,000 Kelvin (107,500 F), which…
  • ULA Partners with Blue Origin to Develop New American Rocket Engine, Ending Reliance on Russia

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    18 Sep 2014 | 1:41 am
    United Launch Alliance (ULA) and Blue Origin, a privately-funded aerospace company owned by Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos, announced Wednesday that they have entered into an agreement to jointly fund development of the new BE-4 rocket engine by Blue Origin that will end reliance on Russia’s RD-180. This new collaboration will allow ULA to maintain the heritage, success and reliability of its rocket families – Atlas and Delta – while addressing the long-term need for a new domestic engine. “This agreement ensures ULA will remain the most cost-efficient, innovative and reliable company…
  • Keep Calm and MAVEN On: NASA Spacecraft Ready for September 21 Martian Orbit Insertion

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:16 pm
    A NASA mission to Mars led by the University of Colorado Boulder is set to slide into orbit around the red planet Sept. 21 to investigate how its climate has changed over the eons, completing a 10-month interplanetary journey of 442 million miles. The orbit-insertion maneuver will begin with six thruster engines firing to shed some of the velocity from the spacecraft, known as the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN, or MAVEN mission. The thruster engines will ignite and burn for 33 minutes to slow the spacecraft, allowing it to be captured into an elliptical orbit around Mars. “So far,…
  • Space Tourism Company Offers Flight Around the Moon by 2018

    Tomasz Nowakowski
    17 Sep 2014 | 2:12 pm
    US space tourism firm Space Adventures is offering a spaceflight around the moon to private tourists on “proven” Russian Soyuz spacecraft – saying that the sponsors will not have to wait for long for their trip. Space Adventures has posted a statement describing its ‘Circumlunar’ mission on its website. “Using flight-proven Russian space vehicles we will fly two private citizens and one professional cosmonaut on a free return trajectory around the far side of the moon. They will come to within 100km of the moon’s surface,” the statement said. The exact price of the space trip…
 
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    Controversy Solved

  • 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…
  • The Chronicles of NASA: The Man,the Moon & the Myth

    Word Smith
    27 Jul 2014 | 5:52 am
    It’s that merry time that comes once every year.The Celebration of our first trek off of this earthly sphere. It fills most Americans with patriotic cheer, as their rivals the Russians,boo and jeer. And in the middle of all this, what do I see? An age old controversy and so I shall end this rhyme, so weird and queerI now regret starting it, Oh dear, Oh dear Diminished hopes of being his peerI’m afraid this can’t compare to a sonnet of Shakespeare Thus concludes my short lived poet’s careerBut Wait! Oh Dear readers, the point is missed I fear!I have gone off on a tangent it would…
  • Transformers:The Rise of the Writer Robots

    Word Smith
    12 Jul 2014 | 4:23 am
    Dear Readers I bring to you this alarming bulletin immediately after stumbling upon the disturbing news that I am actually, a computer program. Hold on! Wait! Wait just a second…I’m getting a new update…After further experimentation, which involved slapping myself in the face (which hurt) and a swift sharp kick in the crotch (delivered by my girl friend ,which hurt even more; not because of her betrayal but more by the action itself) it is safe to conclude that, I, am real. Not so fast Geppetto, whether I’m a real boy or a girl shall be determined after doctors examine my…
  • Minecraft: Asteroid edition

    Word Smith
    27 Jun 2014 | 5:34 am
    Dear readers If you think this to be a misleading ploy, utilizing a famous franchise/brand; to attract views then you would be nothing short of utterly correct. It was cleverly devised by a devious friend of mine. Ok, ok you caught me; I have no friends hahaha. This is the kind of self effacing humor which can be expected from this blog.What you can also expect is Controversy. To find it we once again look to the celestial heavens, more specifically to the rocky masses rolling through space AKA Asteroids.  In case the title didn’t already give it away (In which case you probably…
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