Innovative way to stabilise and control the spacecraft Kepler 2, needed to monitor distant stars with transiting planets
The largest man-made structure in space ever is celebrating its birthday and looking optimistically in the future. This video shows its wonderful journey thru’ its last 15 years.
The whole project did take long to realise. This infographic shows the history of its construction and development.
Video Source: Space.com
Infographic Source: Space.com
NASA’s Kepler space telescope scanned a very tiny portion of the sky for planets and came out with 3538 known and candidate exoplanets. This beautiful multiple juxtaposition of these candidates are shown to be moving to Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. Very poetic, yet scientific!
Source: New Scientist
It has been successfully put into Earth’s orbit. In few weeks time, it will be gradually put into departure hyperbolic trajectory, when real journey to Mars will start. It will take around 300 days to reach Mars, where it will be put in Martian orbit. The details of the mission and its primary scientific objectives are explained in the following document.
- India to launch Mars mission in giant leap for super cheap space exploration (telegraph.co.uk)
- India launches its first rocket to Mars (news.yahoo.com)
The Great Nebula in Orion Natural/False Color Hybrid, a photo by Terry Hancock www.downunderobservatory.com on Flickr.
An amazing colorful depiction of Great Nebula in Orion. How it is achieved can be found in the details below
Detail via Flickr:
Yes yet another version of M42 "The Great Nebula in Orion" this time I have combined the natural color of RGB filters together with the narrow band using HST (Hubble Palette) formula with SII assigned to red channel, H-Alpha to green channel and OIII to blue channel with what I think gives a very interesting result.
I have to say my previous image hubble palette version is a bit of a dissapointment but unfortunately when we apply the narrow band colors from filters according to the Hubble type of palette this is the result and to some it looks like candy and very un naturale. Of course the end result is much dependant on data and processing. You should see what it looks like in CFHT palette…forget it, I am too embarrased to post it.
My conclusion is that for me The Hubble Palette works very well on some objects but on others like M42 not so well. Again it is a matter of personal opinion and taste.
Shooting with these narrow band filters together with LRGB allowed me to create this false/natural color hybrid which introduced color and detail not visible in natural RGB wavelengths using my equipment.
183 individual frames make up this final image for a Total Exposure time 17.8 hours.
Date of Shoot January 2012 thru Dec 2012 (over 11 nights)
Location: Fremont MI USA
All exposures unbinned
H-Alpha, OIII, SII 7 x 30 min each
H-Alpha, OIII, SII 30 x 1 min each
8 x 600 sec each RGB
3 x 300 sec each RGB
10 x 60 sec each RGB
15 x 20 sec each RGB
3 x 300 sec each LUM
10 x 90 sec LUM
10 x 60 sec LUM
15 x 20 sec LUM
30 x 5 sec LUM
Camera: QHY9M monochrome CCD cooled to -30C www.astrofactors.com
Optics: Thomas M. Back TMB 92SS F5.5 APO Refractor Astronomics
Mount: Paramount GT-1100S German Equatorial Mount (with MKS 4000)
Image Aquisition Maxim DL
Stacking and Calibrating: CCDStack
Registration of images in Registar
Post Processing Photoshop CS5
Collection of absolutely stunning images, all taken in this year 2012.
These photos with audio commentary on BBC website: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-19637073
The Royal Observatory has culled through over 800 entries from astronomers and astro-photographers around the world to release its compilation of the best astronomy photos of the year. The contest is run by Royal Observatory Greenwich and Sky at Night Magazine.
Should you have plans to be in London, an exhibition featuring the work is on display at the Royal Observatory Greenwich Planetarium throughout October 2012 in “The Universe Exposed: photographing the cosmos.”
Make sure to watch this full-screen with the sound on! Featured on the National Geographic News: http://newswatch.nationalgeographic.com/2012/02/21/new-time-lapse-gives-rare-glimpse-at-atacamas-starry-nights/
Astronomer’s Paradise is the first episode of Atacama Starry Nights timelapse movie series. Cerro Paranal is truly an astronomers paradise with its stunningly dark, steady and transparent sky. Located in the barren Atacama Desert of Chile it is home to some of the world’s leading telescopes. Operated by the European Southern Observatory (www.eso.org) the Very Large Telescope (VLT) is located on Paranal, composed of four 8 m telescopes which can combine their light to make a giant telescope by interferometry. Four smaller auxiliary telescopes, each 1.8 m in aperture, are important elements of the VLT interferometer.
Walking on the desert near Paranal between the scattered stones and boulders on the pale red dust feels like being on Mars but under the Earth sky. It is an amazing experience to be under an ideal night sky, a pure natural beauty unspoiled by urban lights. On Cerro Paranal in the Atacama Desert you look all around the horizon and there is no prominent sign of city lights, neither direct lights or light domes. There are not many locations left on this planet where you can still experience a dark sky like this. I have been to similar dark skies in other continents from the heart of Sahara in Algeria to Himalayas or islands in the Pacific. But what makes Atacama beat others is being dry and clear for so many nights per year. Paranal was selected for cutting edge astronomical observations also because of the sky transparency and steady atmospheric condition which let astronomers peer in to tiny details in the deep cosmos using giant telescopes.
This footage is made during an imaging expedition to Paranal assigned by the European Southern Observatory (ESO). All video rights reserved by Christoph Malin (www.christophmalin.com) and Babak Tafreshi (www.twanight.org/tafreshi) of The World at Night (TWAN) program (www.twanight.org). The inside observatory video is contributed by Stephane Guisard (www.astrosurf.com/sguisard).
The music is by Carbon Based Lifeforms (www.carbonbasedlifeforms.net). Song Arecibo extract from the album [Twentythree], write & produced by Johannes Hedberg and Daniel Segerstad, published by Ultimae (www.ultimae.com).
There were many attempts to explore Mars using Space missions. As of July 2007 the success rate was 47%. Interestingly, Soviets were the first to attempt it, but Americans were the most successful ones. In coming centuries, the exploration will look different with China and India coming into play. The following infographics tells the whole story:
- Listen to Carl Sagan’s message to Mars rover Curiosity explorers (deathandtaxesmag.com)
- What Do You Think Of The Exploration Of Space? [We Ask You] (makeuseof.com)
- Mars One – One way mission to Mars for human settlement. (developerblogging.wordpress.com)
No doubt Earth is the most habitable of all, but it does not hold the perfect score. Luckily, it’s not human who is making Earth less than perfectly habitable, but rather it is due to “tidal flexing“.
Source: Daily chart: Life on Mars and elsewhere | The Economist.