Keyword: bigdipper

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  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Big Dipper Enhanced

    03/17/2015 4:35:05 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | March 17, 2015 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Do you see it? This common question frequently precedes the rediscovery of one of the most commonly recognized configurations of stars on the northern sky: the Big Dipper. This grouping of stars is one of the few things that has likely been seen, and will be seen, by every human generation. In this featured image, however, the stars of the Big Dipper have been digitally enhanced -- they do not really appear this much brighter than nearby stars. The image was taken earlier this month from France. The Big Dipper is not by itself a constellation. Although part of...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- October Aurora in Prairie Skies

    10/05/2013 6:46:48 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 8 replies
    NASA ^ | October 05, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Wind and spaceweather are transformed in this haunting night skyscape. The prairie windmill and colorful auroral display were captured on October 1, from central South Dakota, USA, as a good season for aurora hunters came with longer autumn nights. From green to rarer reddish hues, the northern lights are sparked by the geomagnetic storms caused by solar activity. These extend far above the cloud bank to altitudes well over 100 kilometers, against the backdrop of distant stars in the northern night. Visual double star Mizar, marking the middle of the Big Dipper's handle, is easy to spot at the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- NGC 5195: The Dot Under the Question Mark

    08/31/2013 6:19:59 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 2 replies
    NASA ^ | August 31, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Dwarf galaxy NGC 5195 is best known as the smaller companion of spiral M51, the Whirlpool galaxy. Seen together they seem to trace the curve and dot of a cosmic question mark, recorded in Lord Rosse's 19th century drawings as one of the original spiral nebulae. Dwarfed by enormous M51 (aka NGC 5194), NGC 5195 spans about 20,000 light-years. A close encounter with M51 has likely triggered star formation and enhanced that galaxy's prominent spiral arms. Processed from image data available in the Hubble Legacy Archive, this majestic close-up of NGC 5195 makes it clear that the dwarf galaxy...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Noctilucent Clouds and Aurora Over Scotland

    08/19/2013 2:58:23 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 3 replies
    NASA ^ | August 19, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Why would the sky still glow after sunset? Besides stars and the band of our Milky Way galaxy, the sky might glow because it contains either noctilucent clouds or aurora. Rare individually, both are visible in the above time lapse movie taken over Caithness, Scotland, UK taken during a single night earlier this month. First noted in 1885, many noctilucent clouds are known to correlate with atmospheric meteor trails, although details and the origins of others remain a topic of research. These meandering bright filaments of sunlight-reflecting ice crystals are the highest clouds in the Earth's atmosphere. The above...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Messier 109

    05/23/2013 3:51:36 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 10 replies
    NASA ^ | May 23, 2013 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Beautiful barred spiral galaxy M109, 109th entry in Charles Messier's famous catalog of bright Nebulae and Star Clusters, is found just below the Big Dipper's bowl in the northern constellation Ursa Major. In telescopic views, its striking central bar gives the galaxy the appearance of the Greek letter "theta", θ, a common mathematical symbol representing an angle. Of course M109 spans a very small angle in planet Earth's sky, about 7 arcminutes or 0.12 degrees. But that small angle corresponds to an enormous 120,000 light-year diameter at the galaxy's estimated 60 million light-year distance. The brightest member of the...
  • Ursa Major Star Explodes

    08/14/2012 5:18:41 AM PDT · by SatinDoll · 43 replies
    Aug. 14, 2012 | Satin Doll
    Early this morning, about 5:05 AM, my nephew saw a star explode in the constellation Ursa Major. We're not star hounds and do not know the name of the star that blew, but he did see it and he was sober. This is his first ever critical astronomy observation. It is amazing what one can see smoking a ciggie on the back deck.
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- M51: The Whirlpool Galaxy

    06/02/2012 3:23:23 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 11 replies
    NASA ^ | June 02, 2012 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Follow the handle of the Big Dipper away from the dipper's bowl until you get to the handle's last bright star. Then, just slide your telescope a little south and west and you might find this stunning pair of interacting galaxies, the 51st entry in Charles Messier famous catalog. Perhaps the original spiral nebula, the large galaxy with well defined spiral structure is also cataloged as NGC 5194. Its spiral arms and dust lanes clearly sweep in front of its companion galaxy (top), NGC 5195. The pair are about 31 million light-years distant and officially lie within the angular...
  • Gingrich Adviser: Romney Should Quit Race, Leave It To Conservatives

    03/07/2012 10:56:22 AM PST · by VinL · 28 replies
    Newsmax ^ | 3-7-12 | Weil
    Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign has an interesting response to a call from the super PAC supporting Rick Santorum for the former House speaker to exit the race. It’s front-runner Mitt Romney who should say sayonara, says Gingrich policy adviser Vince Haley, Politico reports. The pro-Santorum Red, White and Blue Fund put out a statement Wednesday urging Gingrich to stand aside, so that the former Pennsylvania senator can stand as the former Massachusetts governor’s sole conservative challenger. Haley, appearing on Geraldo Rivera’s radio program, would have none of it. But his first response was to take on Romney rather than Santorum....
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day 7-10-02

    07/10/2002 1:45:33 AM PDT · by petuniasevan · 10 replies · 301+ views
    NASA ^ | 7-10-02 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
    Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2002 July 10 M51: Cosmic Whirlpool Credit & Copyright: Tony and Daphne Hallas Explanation: Follow the handle of the Big Dipper away from the dipper's bowl, until you get to the handle's last bright star. Then, just slide your telescope a little south and west and you'll likely find this stunning pair of interacting galaxies, the 51st entry in Charles Messier's famous catalog. Perhaps the original spiral nebula,...
  • 'Oldest Star Chart' Found (32,500 Years Old)

    01/21/2003 1:19:52 PM PST · by blam · 69 replies · 982+ views
    BBC ^ | 1-21-2003 | Dr. David Whetstone
    Tuesday, 21 January, 2003, 10:50 GMT'Oldest star chart' found The carvings have been interpreted as a star map By Dr David Whitehouse BBC News Online science editor The oldest image of a star pattern, that of the famous constellation of Orion, has been recognised on an ivory tablet some 32,500 years old. The tiny sliver of mammoth tusk contains a carving of a man-like figure with arms and legs outstretched in the same pose as the stars of Orion. The claim is made by Dr Michael Rappenglueck, formerly of the University of Munich, who is already renowned for his pioneering...
  • 'Oldest star chart' found

    01/21/2003 3:26:34 PM PST · by vannrox · 42 replies · 870+ views
    BBC NEWS ^ | Tuesday, 21 January, 2003, 10:50 GMT | By Dr David Whitehouse
    'Oldest star chart' found The oldest image of a star pattern, that of the famous constellation of Orion, has been recognised on an ivory tablet some 32,500 years old. The tiny sliver of mammoth tusk contains a carving of a man-like figure with arms and legs outstretched in the same pose as the stars of Orion. The claim is made by Dr Michael Rappenglueck, formerly of the University of Munich, who is already renowned for his pioneering work locating star charts painted on the walls of prehistoric caves. The tablet also contains mysterious notches, carved on its sides and...
  • Neolithic Stone Carving Of Big Dipper Discovered In Northwest China

    08/16/2006 4:05:21 PM PDT · by blam · 16 replies · 806+ views
    Neolithic stone carving of Big Dipper discovered in northwest China A neolithic stone carving of the Big Dipper star formation has been found on Baimiaozi Mountain near Chifeng City in northwest China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, according to experts. The stone carving was discovered by Wu Jiacai, a 50-year-old researcher in literature and history with Wongniute Banner of Inner Mongolia. Wu found a large yam-shaped stone, 310 centimeters long, onto which 19 stars had been carved. The representation of the Big Dipper is on the north face of the stone. The stars are represented by indentations in the stone. The...
  • 'Unique' astronomical object reveals Ancient Egyptians kept close tabs on the Big Dipper

    11/14/2010 8:31:22 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 63 replies
    Heritage Key ^ | Tuesday, November 9, 2010 | Owen Jarus
    New research on a 2,400 year old star table shows that the Ancient Egyptians kept close tabs on the Big Dipper, monitoring changes in the constellation's orientation throughout the course of an entire year... Ancient Egyptians represented it as an ox's foreleg... Professor Sarah Symons, of McMaster University in Hamilton Canada, carried out the new research. She presented her results on Sunday at an Egyptology symposium in Toronto. The star table she analyzed is located inside the lid of a 2,400 year old granite sarcophagus, constructed in the shape of a bull, which is now in the Egyptian Museum. The...
  • The Big Dipper Gains a Star

    12/12/2009 3:16:18 AM PST · by Daffynition · 15 replies · 1,152+ views
    December 10, 2009 | Ned Potter
    The Big Dipper -- part of Ursa Major in astronomy -- may be one of the most recognized features of the night sky, but that doesn't mean it can't stand an occasional improvement. A team from New York's American Museum of Natural History, NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab, Caltech, and the University of Cambridge in England reports that Alcor, the bright star that forms the bend in the dipper's "handle," has a dim red dwarf star orbiting it. They've put out this very pretty image, in which Alcor is renamed Alcor A, and its newly-found satellite star is called Alcor B....
  • 2051 space oddity: TV station aims at an alien audience

    10/03/2006 6:53:47 PM PDT · by annie laurie · 6 replies · 374+ views
    The Irish Times ^ | Sep 30, 06 | Derek Scally
    Eurotrash goes intergalactic tonight when two naked television presenters host the first programme conceived for aliens and broadcast to a star located in the Big Dipper, 45 light years away. Despite the English language title, the programme, Cosmic Connexion, as conceived by the channel Arte, assumes the aliens will have a working knowledge of German and French - the station's two working languages. The TV show has been conceived as an idiot's guide to humankind, or close encounters of the nude kind. The hosts will explain how the human body is created - thus justifying their own nakedness - and...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day 6-20-02

    06/19/2002 9:24:16 PM PDT · by petuniasevan · 9 replies · 203+ views
    NASA ^ | 6-20-02 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
    Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2002 June 20 Bright Galaxy M81 Credit & Copyright: Robert Gendler Explanation: Big and beautiful spiral galaxy M81, in the northern constellation Ursa Major, is one of the brightest galaxies visible in the skies of planet Earth. This superbly detailed view reveals its bright nucleus, grand spiral arms and sweeping cosmic dust lanes with a scale comparable to the Milky Way. Hinting at a disorderly past, a remarkable...