Saturday, May 28, 2011

Space News With Lots of Pictures.

Lots of astronomy stories have been published in the past week, and I've been rather busy trying to keep track of them all. The best things about these stories, and about astronomy in general, are the pictures. They can tell so much and most of them look beautiful. So, I've rounded up a bunch of the amazing pictures published in the past week or so, and will probably give a short paragraph about them:


Lets start with the star that changed the Universe. The Hubble telescope viewed this variable star that actually resides in another galaxy, our neighbor, Andromeda. Before this star was discovered, the fuzzy patches of galaxies were just called nebula, and thought to be just gas inside our own galaxy. Edwin Hubble (the Hubble telescopes namesake) changed all that in 1923, discovering that these nebula were indeed other galaxies, and used this variable star to determine that they were millions of light years away. You can read the historic story here.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
NASA released these amazing raw images taken by Cassini of Saturn's moons Titan and Enceladus. These images, haven't been processed or colorized yet, but absolutely blow my mind. A couple of the highlights can be seen here, while the full set is over here.

Image Credit: Gemini Observatory/AURA/Andrew Levan

Probably the most distant object ever seen, for now. This is a gamma ray burst, known as GRB 090429B. I made a post about GRBs awhile ago. If you want to know more about the science behind how this sort of stuff is determined, Bad Astronomy has got you covered. And here is the original story with a link to the paper.


WISE, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, was turned off awhile ago, but the work still goes on. NASA released a gallery of nine spiral galaxy images taken by WISE. For more info on each galaxy, check out the NASA release. (There is also a really huge version of the image, which is drool inducing.)

Docked Endeavour at ISS through a fish-eye lens. Image Credit: NASA

Photos from the last space shuttle spacewalk, it also marked the formal completion of the U.S. segment of the International Space Station. You can go through the entire photo set here.

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Toledo
This graphic illustrates a stellar fountain of crystal rain, beginning with a Spitzer picture of the star in question, and ending with an artist's concept of what the crystal "rain" might look like. The full article is here.

Of course, there are a couple of stories out there that just really don't have good pictures to go with them. A few of them I suggest checking out are: New arm discovered in outer edge of the Milky Way Galaxy; The Moon is wetter then we thought; For Mars, rapid formation stunted growth; and Info on OSIRIS-REx, NASAs new science mission to asteroid launching in 2016. Have a good Memorial Day weekend to everyone in the U.S. Everyone else, just have a good weekend.


22 comments:

Kicking Rocks said...

When will they capture a picture of extraterrestrials living on a planet?

Rob said...

So many cool pictures! So many beautiful things in space!

Bonjour Tristesse said...

Wow, those spiral galaxy images are amazing.

Shelby Fox said...

Beautiful! I took a course in astronomy last year and I've been fascinated ever since.

Dave said...

This is a most excellent blog. The images that you have supplied on this post alone are outstanding. You obviously spend a lot of time making up your posts to such a high standard. Its always a pleasure for me to visit your blog cheers.

phthalo. said...

The raw Cassini pictures are beautiful.

srnajera said...

its awesomee D:

Malkavian said...

Crystal Rain, never heard of that concept.

Lost.in.Idaho said...

I haven't seen this much NASA news in mainstream media since the last shuttle disaster. Isn't it cool?

ed said...

images look crazy, you have a good weekend too.

Pool Fool said...

wow at the last black whole nice graphics

Vince^_^ said...

Awsome, the images are mindblowing. Followed:)!

Necroticism said...

I admire Mr. Hubble a lot!

Erika said...

Lots of pictures indeed. And each more interesting than the last =P

Jay said...

our universe is alive! :D

Geoffrey said...

crystal rain sounds amazing.

Admin said...

You should look up dirty space news. With ze frank. Brilliant.

Dejch said...

space is amaizing!!!

Moobeat said...

yarharhar

Dootzkie said...

4th picture, the 9 part one is just amazing! Love it

JayPower said...

Damn these pictures are just beautifull! ;D

VenomForMasses said...

gorgeous

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