Scipsy

Three Lasers and Light Pollution

The Keck I Laser propagating, alongside the Keck II and Subaru lasers. WMKO Engineer Andrew Cooper took over 90 x 1minute exposures from near UKIRT on the summit ridge on May 26. The result has been combined into the attached image and a video. The image combines 23 exposures, each 1 minute long. During the exposure, the Keck II laser is aimed over the camera at the Milky Way’s Galactic Center. The image also shows a car driving down the summit road which appears as a stream of light. (via W. M. Keck Observatory)

Three Lasers and Light Pollution

The Keck I Laser propagating, alongside the Keck II and Subaru lasers. WMKO Engineer Andrew Cooper took over 90 x 1minute exposures from near UKIRT on the summit ridge on May 26. The result has been combined into the attached image and a video. The image combines 23 exposures, each 1 minute long. During the exposure, the Keck II laser is aimed over the camera at the Milky Way’s Galactic Center. The image also shows a car driving down the summit road which appears as a stream of light. (via W. M. Keck Observatory)

The History of Pretty Much Everything
Orion’s Big Head Revealed in Infrared (via NASA)

Orion’s Big Head Revealed in Infrared (via NASA)

Dwarf Galaxy: Small but Perfectly Formed | ESA/Hubble
Cas A is the remnant of a star that exploded about 300 years ago. The X-ray image shows an expanding shell of hot gas produced by the explosion. This gaseous shell is about 10 light years in diameter, and has a temperature of about 50 million degrees. (via Cassiopeia A: 26 Aug 9)

Cas A is the remnant of a star that exploded about 300 years ago. The X-ray image shows an expanding shell of hot gas produced by the explosion. This gaseous shell is about 10 light years in diameter, and has a temperature of about 50 million degrees. (via Cassiopeia A: 26 Aug 9)

The Bubble of Our Solar System
As the solar wind flows from the sun, it creates a bubble in space known as the “heliosphere” around our solar system. The heliosphere is the region of space under the influence of our sun. The interstellar medium, the matter that fills the local region of our galaxy, is forced to flow around the heliosphere. It disturbs the solar wind so much as to create a secondary bubble around the heliosphere known as the heliosheath, which is filled with heated, slower solar wind. Scientists on the Cassini mission used the Ion and Neutral Camera sensor on the Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument to look at the interaction of these plasma bubbles with the interstellar medium. The scientists also looked at how the heliosphere and heliosheath move through the interstellar medium together. The sensor on Cassini detects hot particles known as energetic neutral atoms at high energies, complementary to instruments on the NASA Interstellar Boundary Explorer mission. This animation starts with our sun and pulls out to show us the heliosphere (gray) and the heliosheath (yellow) of our solar system. As the animation zooms away from the sun, it shows an artist’s concept of the interstellar medium (in black arrows) flowing past the heliosheath. The interstellar magnetic field (smoky gray vertical stripes) parts and slides around the bubble of hot, high pressure particles. The interstellar medium contains the bubble and holds it in a more spherical configuration. The colors on the heliosheath represent the intensity of the hot high pressure particles, with red being the most intense, highest pressure. The shape of our solar system moving through the interstellar medium was previously thought to be comet-shaped, with a head pointed into the stream, and a tail flowing downstream. New observations show the shape actually resembles something more like a slippery ball (the hot particles that exert pressure) moving through smoke (the interstellar magnetic field). As the “ball” moves through the “smoke,” the smoke bends and parts to let the ball through, then resumes its previous shape after the ball has passed on. At present, this is only hypothetical: New models will be motivated by these measurements, and will provide a more physically accurate basis for the interaction of the heliosphere with the interstellar medium. (via Cassini Solstice Mission: The Bubble of Our Solar System)

The Bubble of Our Solar System

As the solar wind flows from the sun, it creates a bubble in space known as the “heliosphere” around our solar system. The heliosphere is the region of space under the influence of our sun. The interstellar medium, the matter that fills the local region of our galaxy, is forced to flow around the heliosphere. It disturbs the solar wind so much as to create a secondary bubble around the heliosphere known as the heliosheath, which is filled with heated, slower solar wind. Scientists on the Cassini mission used the Ion and Neutral Camera sensor on the Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument to look at the interaction of these plasma bubbles with the interstellar medium. The scientists also looked at how the heliosphere and heliosheath move through the interstellar medium together. The sensor on Cassini detects hot particles known as energetic neutral atoms at high energies, complementary to instruments on the NASA Interstellar Boundary Explorer mission. This animation starts with our sun and pulls out to show us the heliosphere (gray) and the heliosheath (yellow) of our solar system. As the animation zooms away from the sun, it shows an artist’s concept of the interstellar medium (in black arrows) flowing past the heliosheath. The interstellar magnetic field (smoky gray vertical stripes) parts and slides around the bubble of hot, high pressure particles. The interstellar medium contains the bubble and holds it in a more spherical configuration. The colors on the heliosheath represent the intensity of the hot high pressure particles, with red being the most intense, highest pressure. The shape of our solar system moving through the interstellar medium was previously thought to be comet-shaped, with a head pointed into the stream, and a tail flowing downstream. New observations show the shape actually resembles something more like a slippery ball (the hot particles that exert pressure) moving through smoke (the interstellar magnetic field). As the “ball” moves through the “smoke,” the smoke bends and parts to let the ball through, then resumes its previous shape after the ball has passed on. At present, this is only hypothetical: New models will be motivated by these measurements, and will provide a more physically accurate basis for the interaction of the heliosphere with the interstellar medium. (via Cassini Solstice Mission: The Bubble of Our Solar System)

Nature’s Drilling Exposes Deeply Buried Minerals 
This image shows the context for orbital observations of exposed rocks that had been buried an estimated 5 kilometers (3 miles) deep on Mars. It covers an area about 560 kilometers (350 miles) across, dominated by the Huygens crater, which is about the size of Wisconsin. The impact that excavated Huygens lifted material from far underground and piled some of it in the crater’s rim. At about the 10 o’clock position around the rim of Huygens lies an unnamed crater about 35 kilometers (22 miles) in diameter that has punched into the uplifted rim material and exposed rocks containing carbonate minerals. The minerals were identified by observations with the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. North is toward the top of this image, which is centered at 14 degrees south latitude, 304.4 degrees west longitude. The image combines topographical information from the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter instrument on NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor with daytime infrared imaging by the Thermal Emission Imaging System camera on NASA’s Mars Odyssey orbiter. The Thermal Emission Imaging System was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing and is operated by a team based at ASU. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Odyssey mission for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, is NASA’s industry partner for the mission and built the spacecraft. (via Mars Exploration Program)

Nature’s Drilling Exposes Deeply Buried Minerals

This image shows the context for orbital observations of exposed rocks that had been buried an estimated 5 kilometers (3 miles) deep on Mars. It covers an area about 560 kilometers (350 miles) across, dominated by the Huygens crater, which is about the size of Wisconsin. The impact that excavated Huygens lifted material from far underground and piled some of it in the crater’s rim. At about the 10 o’clock position around the rim of Huygens lies an unnamed crater about 35 kilometers (22 miles) in diameter that has punched into the uplifted rim material and exposed rocks containing carbonate minerals. The minerals were identified by observations with the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. North is toward the top of this image, which is centered at 14 degrees south latitude, 304.4 degrees west longitude. The image combines topographical information from the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter instrument on NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor with daytime infrared imaging by the Thermal Emission Imaging System camera on NASA’s Mars Odyssey orbiter. The Thermal Emission Imaging System was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing and is operated by a team based at ASU. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Odyssey mission for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, is NASA’s industry partner for the mission and built the spacecraft. (via Mars Exploration Program)

This raw image of Saturn’s moon Dione taken by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft shows the fractured region known as “wispy terrain.” The image was obtained on Dec. 20, 2010, from a distance of about 107,000 kilometers (66,000 miles). (via Wispy Dione)

This raw image of Saturn’s moon Dione taken by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft shows the fractured region known as “wispy terrain.” The image was obtained on Dec. 20, 2010, from a distance of about 107,000 kilometers (66,000 miles). (via Wispy Dione)

Astronomers working with data from several observatories, including ESA’s XMM-Newton, have discovered the most distant, mature galaxy cluster yet. The cluster is seen as it was when the Universe was only about a quarter of its current age. In contrast to other structures observed in the young Universe, this object is already in its prime, as is evident from its diffuse X-ray emission and evolved population of galaxies. This shows that fully-grown galaxy clusters were already in place this early in cosmic history. […] (via An old galaxy cluster discovered in the young Universe)

Astronomers working with data from several observatories, including ESA’s XMM-Newton, have discovered the most distant, mature galaxy cluster yet. The cluster is seen as it was when the Universe was only about a quarter of its current age. In contrast to other structures observed in the young Universe, this object is already in its prime, as is evident from its diffuse X-ray emission and evolved population of galaxies. This shows that fully-grown galaxy clusters were already in place this early in cosmic history. […] (via An old galaxy cluster discovered in the young Universe)