lunes, 25 de julio de 2016

APOD - Deep Magellanic Clouds Image Indicates Collisions

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.

2016 July 25
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download   the highest resolution version available.

Deep Magellanic Clouds Image Indicates Collisions
Image Credit & Copyright: Yuri Beletsky (Carnegie Las Campanas Observatory, TWAN) & David Martinez-Delgado (U. Heidelberg)

Explanation: Did the two most famous satellite galaxies of our Milky Way Galaxy once collide? No one knows for sure, but a detailed inspection of deep images like that featured here give an indication that they have. Pictured, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) is on the top left and the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) is on the bottom right. The surrounding field is monochrome color-inverted to highlight faint filaments, shown in gray. Perhaps surprisingly, the featured research-grade image was compiled with small telescopes to cover the large angular field -- nearly 40 degrees across. Much of the faint nebulosity is Galactic Cirrus clouds of thin dust in our own Galaxy, but a faint stream of stars does appear to be extending from the SMC toward the LMC. Also, stars surrounding the LMC appear asymmetrically distributed, indicating in simulations that they could well have been pulled off gravitationally in one or more collisions. Both the LMC and the SMC are visible to the unaided eye in southern skies. Future telescopic observations and computer simulations are sure to continue in a continuing effort to better understand the history of our Milky Way and its surroundings.

Tomorrow's picture: puzzling sky beautiful


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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
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domingo, 24 de julio de 2016

APOD - M2-9: Wings of a Butterfly Nebula

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.

2016 July 24
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download   the highest resolution version available.

M2-9: Wings of a Butterfly Nebula
Image Credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, NASA, ESA - Processing: Judy Schmidt

Explanation: Are stars better appreciated for their art after they die? Actually, stars usually create their most artistic displays as they die. In the case of low-mass stars like our Sun and M2-9 pictured above, the stars transform themselves from normal stars to white dwarfs by casting off their outer gaseous envelopes. The expended gas frequently forms an impressive display called a planetary nebula that fades gradually over thousands of years. M2-9, a butterfly planetary nebula 2100 light-years away shown in representative colors, has wings that tell a strange but incomplete tale. In the center, two stars orbit inside a gaseous disk 10 times the orbit of Pluto. The expelled envelope of the dying star breaks out from the disk creating the bipolar appearance. Much remains unknown about the physical processes that cause planetary nebulae.

Tomorrow's picture: broken nearby galaxies


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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
NASA Official: Phillip Newman Specific rights apply.
NASA Web Privacy Policy and Important Notices
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sábado, 23 de julio de 2016

APOD - Summer Planets and Milky Way

Astronomy Picture of the Day

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2016 July 23
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download   the highest resolution version available.

Summer Planets and Milky Way
Image Credit & Copyright: Tunç Tezel (TWAN)

Explanation: Lights sprawl toward the horizon in this night skyscape from Uludag National Park, Bursa Province, Turkey, planet Earth. The stars and nebulae of the Milky Way are still visible though, stretching above the lights on the northern summer night while three other planets shine brightly. Jupiter is at the far right, Mars near the center of the frame, and Saturn is just right of the bulging center of our galaxy. Because the panoramic scene was captured on July 6, all three planets pictured were hosting orbiting, operational, robotic spacecraft from Earth. Popular Mars has five (from three different space agencies): MAVEN (NASA), Mars Orbiter Mission (India), Mars Express (ESA), Mars Odyssey (NASA), Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (NASA). Ringed Saturn hosts the daring Cassini spacecraft. Just arrived, Juno now orbits ruling gas giant Jupiter.

Tomorrow's picture: pixels in space


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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
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viernes, 22 de julio de 2016

APOD - Galaxy Cluster Abell S1063 and Beyond

Astronomy Picture of the Day

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2016 July 22
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download   the highest resolution version available.

Galaxy Cluster Abell S1063 and Beyond
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Jennifer Lotz (STScI)

Explanation: Some 4 billion light-years away, galaxies of massive Abell S1063 cluster near the center of this sharp Hubble Space Telescope snapshot. But the fainter bluish arcs are magnified images of galaxies that lie far beyond Abell S1063. About twice as distant, their otherwise undetected light is magnified and distorted by the cluster's largely unseen gravitational mass, approximately 100 trillion times the mass of the Sun. Providing a tantalizing glimpse of galaxies in the early universe, the effect is known as gravitational lensing. A consequence of warped spacetime it was first predicted by Einstein a century ago. The Hubble image is part of the Frontier Fields program to explore the Final Frontier.

Tomorrow's picture: pixels in space


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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
NASA Official: Phillip Newman Specific rights apply.
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& Michigan Tech. U.


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jueves, 21 de julio de 2016

APOD - Falcon 9: Launch and Landing

Astronomy Picture of the Day

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2016 July 21
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download   the highest resolution version available.

Falcon 9: Launch and Landing
Image Credit & Copyright: Michael Seeley

Explanation: Shortly after midnight on July 18 a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, planet Earth. About 9 minutes later, the rocket's first stage returned to the spaceport. This single time exposure captures the rocket's launch arc and landing streak from Jetty Park only a few miles away. Along a climbing, curving trajectory the launch is traced by the initial burn of the first stage, ending near the top of the bright arc before stage separation. Due to perspective the next bright burn appears above the top of the launch arc in the photo, the returning first stage descending closer to the Cape. The final landing burn creates a long streak as the first stage slows and comes to rest at Landing Zone 1. Yesterday the Dragon cargo spacecraft delivered to orbit by the rocket's second stage was attached to the International Space Station.

Tomorrow's picture: pixels in space


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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
NASA Official: Phillip Newman Specific rights apply.
NASA Web Privacy Policy and Important Notices
A service of: ASD at NASA / GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.


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