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Keyword: astronomy

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  • Astronomers Capture Photo of ‘Space Butterfly’ From Thousands of Light Years Away

    08/11/2020 11:31:33 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 17 replies ^ | August 11, 2020 Updated: August 11, 2020 | Staff
    (Courtesy of ESO) ===================================================================================== Thousands of light years away, there’s a “space butterfly” colored with brilliant blues and clouds of purple and red. It’s an image we’ve never seen in this much detail before. So named for its resemblance to the winged insect, the “butterfly” is actually a planetary nebula—a giant cloud of gas that forms around an ancient star that hasn’t yet exploded. The European Space Observatory’s (ESO) aptly named Very Large Telescope, stationed in host country Chile, recently captured a vibrant image of the interstellar object. This image of the planetary nebula NGC 2899 is the most detailed...
  • Mars-sized 'Light-bridge' on Surface of Sun Appears to Signal Break-up of Vast Sunspot

    08/10/2020 8:57:01 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 23 replies
    Newsweek ^ | 8/10/20 | Aristos Georgiou
    Amateur astronomer and Florida resident Howard Eskildsen snapped an image of the "light bridge"—which has a length that's roughly equal to the diameter of Mars—in a recently formed sunspot dubbed AR2770, reported. These phenomena are caused by strong magnetic field concentrations, which inhibit convection—the transfer of heat from one place to another within gases and liquids. This process heats the solar surface. Hot "bubbles" of plasma—charged particles that are one of the four fundamental states of matter—are transported from deeper, hotter layers to the surface, whereas cooler plasma is transported back to the interior... According to Felipe, light bridges...
  • Massive sunspot is turning towards Earth this can result in major solar flares that can effect electrical systems

    08/07/2020 7:10:31 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 73 replies
    First Post ^ | 08/07/2020
    A massive sunspot on the Sun is turning towards our planet and this could result in strong solar flares. The sunspot AR2770 was detected earlier this week and is expected to grow in size in the upcoming days. A report by - a space weather forecasting website - said that multiple minor flares have been emitted by the sunspot already as it faced towards the earth. These flares have caused "minor waves of ionization to ripple through Earth's upper atmosphere" but nothing major yet. A clear picture of the AR2770 has also surfaced that gives a better idea into...
  • Perseid Meteor Shower Reaches Peak Starting Tonight

    08/10/2020 6:59:11 PM PDT · by metmom · 29 replies ^ | Aug 10, 2020 | Courtney Sexton
    very August stargazers in the Northern hemisphere eagerly await the Perseid meteor shower. The annual celestial light show is caused by cosmic dust and debris left in Earth’s orbital path by Comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle. The comet last entered our solar system in 1992, and won’t be back until 2126, but we still get treated to its glowing remnants of its tail every year. More than 4.5 billion years ago, comets formed out of the same gas and dust that created Earth and the other planets in our solar system. But unlike planets that orbit the sun on more circular orbits, comets...
  • NASA to Reexamine Nicknames for Cosmic Objects

    08/08/2020 10:05:38 AM PDT · by River Hawk · 69 replies
    NASA website ^ | Aug. 5, 2020 | Tricia Talbert
    Distant cosmic objects such as planets, galaxies, and nebulae are sometimes referred to by the scientific community with unofficial nicknames. As the scientific community works to identify and address systemic discrimination and inequality in all aspects of the field, it has become clear that certain cosmic nicknames are not only insensitive, but can be actively harmful. NASA is examining its use of unofficial terminology for cosmic objects as part of its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. As an initial step, NASA will no longer refer to planetary nebula NGC 2392, the glowing remains of a Sun-like star that is...
  • NASA drops 'insensitive' celestial nicknames in effort to address systemic discrimination

    08/10/2020 4:29:06 PM PDT · by janetjanet998 · 32 replies
    NASA said "Eskimo Nebula" and "Siamese Twins Galaxy" are the first to go. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has announced that they will stop using nicknames of celestial bodies that are culturally insensitive. In a statement released on Wednesday, August 5, NASA said that it had become clear that certain cosmic nicknames were not only insensitive but actively harmful and that they were taking these initial steps to address systemic discrimination and inequality in all aspects of the field. “As an initial step, NASA will no longer refer to planetary nebula NGC 2392, the glowing remains of a...
  • Planet Ceres is an 'ocean world' with sea water beneath surface, mission finds

    08/10/2020 4:46:24 PM PDT · by NRx · 60 replies
    The Guardian ^ | 08-10-2020 | AFP
    The dwarf planet Ceres – long believed to be a barren space rock – is an ocean world with reservoirs of sea water beneath its surface, the results of a major exploration mission showed on Monday. Ceres is the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter and has its own gravity, enabling the Nasa Dawn spacecraft to capture high-resolution images of its surface. Now a team of scientists from the United States and Europe have analysed images relayed from the orbiter, captured about 35km (22 miles) from the asteroid. They focused on the 20-million-year-old Occator crater and...
  • Mysterious 'fast radio burst' detected closer to Earth than ever before

    08/07/2020 7:21:56 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 27 replies ^ | 08-07-2020 | By Brandon Specktor - Senior Writer
    Most FRBs originate hundreds of millions of light-years away. This one came from inside the Milky Way. Thirty thousand years ago, a dead star on the other side of the Milky Way belched out a powerful mixture of radio and X-ray energy. On April 28, 2020, that belch swept over Earth, triggering alarms at observatories around the world. The signal was there and gone in half a second, but that's all scientists needed to confirm they had detected something remarkable: the first ever "fast radio burst" (FRB) to emanate from a known star within the Milky Way, according to a...
  • Asteroid Passed 'Extremely Close' To Earth Without Smacking Any Satellites [Hello And Goodbye, Asteroid 2020 OY4]

    08/02/2020 6:26:14 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 42 replies
    YouTube ^ | recently | AstroBytes
    An asteroid named 2020 OY4, made its closest approach to our planet on July 28, when it was discovered just 26,000 miles away from Earth. It flew by earth at the range that rivals the orbits of some high-flying satellites. This is extremely close in astronomical terms, and just 11 percent of the average distance between the Earth and the moon. In fact, the data from NASA that tracks near-Earth objects suggests that the close approach of this asteroid was the closest that any asteroid will come to our planet for the next year. However, if you measure by the...
  • Apollo 11 Moon Landing & Communion on the Moon

    08/02/2020 2:40:41 PM PDT · by Perseverando · 25 replies
    American Minute ^ | July 20, 2020 | Bill Federer
    "One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind," stated Astronaut Neil Armstrong, JULY 20, 1969, as he became the f irst man to walk on the moon, almost 238,900 miles away from the Earth. The second man on the moon was Colonel Buzz Aldrin, who described it as "magnificent desolation." Aldrin earned a Ph.D. from M.I.T. and helped develop the technology necessary for the mission, especially the complicated lunar module rendezvous with the command module. Buzz Aldrin's popularity was the inspiration for the character "Buzz Lightyear" in Pixar's animated movie Toy Story (1995). Buzz Aldrin shared a...
  • Enigmatic Rupture in Earth’s Magnetic Field Caused New Type of Aurora, NASA Scientist Reveals

    12/29/2019 8:11:48 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 19 replies
    Sputnik ^ | 12/26/2019
    What prompted this “massive, but localised compression”, which looked like something punched the magnetic field, is unclear. The edge of the bubble rushed towards the Earth by about 25,000 kilometres, taking just 1 minute and 45 seconds. The researchers suggested that there might have been an unprecedented storm in the area where the solar particles sneak through our protective bubble, the magnetosphere. What caused the storm is not known. "This motion is something that we've never seen before. This eastward and then westward and then spiralling motion is not something that we've ever seen, not something we currently understand", Briggs...
  • Solar storm will make it easier to see an aurora in northern US Tuesday night

    09/11/2018 6:02:13 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 6 replies
    abc ^ | ep 10, 2018, 7:38 PM ET | Joyeeta Biswas
    Have you ever wanted to see auroras, the rippling lights that sometimes paint the heavens with unearthly blues or greens and make you feel like you're in a van Gogh painting? If you live in a northern U.S. state, Tuesday might be your chance. Residents in some parts of at least 15 states across the country may be able to see the awe-inspiring phenomenon, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said on Monday. "The further north you are -- say, upstate New York or upper Michigan -- the more likely you are to see the aurora," Rodney Viereck, a...
  • Alaskan seismometers record the northern lights

    07/29/2020 7:04:47 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 18 replies ^ | 07/29/2020 | Seismological Society of America
    By comparing data collected by all-sky cameras, magnetometers, and seismometers during three aurora events in 2019, University of Alaska Fairbanks seismologist Carl Tape and colleagues show that it's possible to match the striking display of lights with seismic signals, to observe the same phenomenon in different ways. Researchers have known for a while that seismometers are sensitive to magnetic fluctuations—and have worked hard to find ways to shield their instruments against magnetic influence or to remove these unwanted signals from their seismic data. But the aurora study offers an example of how seismometers could be paired with other instruments to...
  • Crew Demo-2 Splashdown (Livestream for early afternoon)

    08/02/2020 8:44:57 AM PDT · by Monty22002 · 174 replies
    Youtube/SpaceX ^ | 8/2/20 | SpaceX
    Youtube Livestream.
  • They Don’t Call Them the Dog Days For Nothing

    08/01/2020 5:44:59 AM PDT · by NOBO2012 · 20 replies
    MOTUS A.D. ^ | 8-1-20 | MOTUS
    I know it’s Saturday, the day normally reserved for all things feline, but it’s August 1st which means we are officially in the dog days of summer - when all manner of madness can occur. Specific dates for the dog days vary – some believe them to be the entire month of August, in Scandinavia they run from July 22 through August 22 and the Old Farmer’s Almanac pegs them as July 3 – August 11. Most people associate them with the hottest and most humid days of summer – so miserable that it drives dogs mad. In fact it...
  • Indian schoolgirls discover asteroid moving toward Earth

    07/30/2020 3:20:38 PM PDT · by voicereason · 32 replies
    CNN ^ | 07/28/2020 | Swati Gupta and Amy Woodyatt
    Two Indian schoolgirls have discovered an asteroid which is slowly shifting its orbit and moving toward Earth. Radhika Lakhani and Vaidehi Vekariya, both studying in 10th grade, were working on a school project when they discovered the asteroid, which they named HLV2514. The girls, from the city of Surat in the western Indian state of Gujarat, were participating in a Space India and NASA project, which allows students to analyze images taken by a telescope positioned at the University of Hawaii. Aakash Dwivedi, senior educator and astronomer at Space India, told CNN that students across India were taught how to...
  • Spitzer telescope sees long, violent history for planet-building

    10/18/2004 8:07:17 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 14 replies · 489+ views
    Monterey Herald ^ | 10/18/04 | Robert Jablon - AP
    LOS ANGELES - The Spitzer telescope's examination of hundreds of stars has found evidence that the times it takes to form an Earth-sized planet may last hundreds instead of tens of millions of years. The telescope revealed dust rings around nearby stars that couldn't have survived long unless violent collisions between gigantic chunks of rock were replenishing them, scientists said during a press conference Monday at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. Scientists have long believed that planets are formed when the dust in a disc-like formation around a young star begins to clump. Some of the clumps eventually grow...
  • Wild Solar System Spotted Around Distant Star

    11/10/2009 6:03:09 PM PST · by KevinDavis · 7 replies · 529+ views ^ | 11/10/09
    A young star observed by the Spitzer Space Telescope appears to be home to a wild – and young – planetary system that shares some of the frenetic dynamics thought to have shaped the early years of our own solar system. The Spitzer observations suggest young planets circling the star are disturbing smaller comet-like bodies, causing them to collide and kick up a huge halo of dust.
  • Spitzer detects comet storm in nearby solar system

    10/21/2011 1:06:50 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 19 replies ^ | 20 OCT 2011 | Provided by JPL/NASA
    NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has detected signs of icy bodies raining down in an alien solar system. The downpour resembles our own solar system several billion years ago during a period known as the "Late Heavy Bombardment," which may have brought water and other life-forming ingredients to Earth. During this epoch, comets and other frosty objects that were flung from the outer solar system pummeled the inner planets. The barrage scarred our moon and produced large amounts of dust. Now Spitzer has spotted a band of dust around a nearby bright star in the northern sky called Eta Corvi that...
  • The Shocking Behavior of a Speedy Star

    04/29/2014 5:20:41 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 16 replies
    Scientific Computing ^ | Friday, April 25, 2014 | NASA
    Roguish runaway stars can have a big impact on their surroundings as they plunge through the Milky Way galaxy. Their high-speed encounters shock the galaxy, creating arcs, as seen in this newly released image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. In this case, the speedster star is known as Kappa Cassiopeiae, or HD 2905 to astronomers. It is a massive, hot supergiant moving at around 2.5 million mph relative to its neighbors (1,100 kilometers per second). But what really makes the star stand out in this image is the surrounding, streaky red glow of material in its path. Such structures are...