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News for Norther Colorado and the world

Thursday, December 18, 2014

‘Photo Essays’ Archives

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

  Titan, Rings, and Saturn from Cassini Credit: Cassini Imaging Team, ISS, JPL, ESA, NASA Explanation: How thin are the rings of Saturn? Brightness measurements from different angles have shown Saturn's rings to be about one kilometer thick, making them many times thinner, in relative proportion, than a razor blade. This thinness sometimes appears in dramatic fashion during an image taken nearly along the ring plane. The robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn has now ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

A Solar Prominence Eruption from SDO Credit: NASA/Goddard/SDO AIA Team Explanation: One of the most spectacular solar sights is an erupting prominence. Two weeks ago, NASA's Sun-orbiting Solar Dynamic Observatory spacecraft imaged an impressively large prominence erupting from the surface. The dramatic explosion was captured in ultraviolet light in the above time lapse video covering 90 minutes, where a new frame was taken every 24 seconds. The scale of the prominence is huge -- the ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

  Asteroids in the Distance Credit: R. Evans & K. Stapelfeldt (JPL), WFPC2, HST, NASA Explanation: Rocks from space hit Earth every day. The larger the rock, though, the less often Earth is struck. Many kilograms of space dust pitter to Earth daily. Larger bits appear initially as a bright meteor. Baseball-sized rocks and ice-balls streak through our atmosphere daily, most evaporating quickly to nothing. Significant threats do exist for rocks near 100 meters in ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

  Cooling Neutron Star Credit: X-ray: NASA / CXC / UNAM / Ioffe / D.Page, P.Shternin et al; Optical: NASA / STScI; Illustration: NASA/CXC/M.Weiss) Explanation: Supernova remnant Cassiopeia A (Cass A) is a comfortable 11,000 light-years away. Light from the Cass A supernova, the death explosion of a massive star, first reached Earth just 330 years ago. The expanding debris cloud spans about 15 light-years in this composite X-ray/optical image, while the bright source near ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

    NGC 6914 Nebulae Credit: Descubre Foundation, CAHA, OAUV, DSA, Vicent Peris (OAUV), Jack Harvey (SSRO), Juan Conejero (PixInsight) Explanation: A dramatic study in contrasts, this colorful skyscape features stars, dust, and glowing gas in NGC 6914. The complex of nebulae lies some 6,000 light-years away, toward the high-flying northern constellation Cygnus and the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy. With foreground dust clouds in silhouette, both reddish ... Full Story

Balloon

Balloon

By Andrea Schledewitz      

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

    NGC 1499: The California Nebula Credit & Copyright: Markus Noller (Deep Sky Images) Explanation: What's California doing in space? Drifting through the Orion Arm of the spiral Milky Way Galaxy, this cosmic cloud by chance echoes the outline of California on the west coast of the United States. Our own Sun also lies within the Milky Way's Orion Arm, only about 1,500 light-years from the California Nebula. Also known as NGC 1499, the classic emission nebula is ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

  Stephan's Quintet Image Data: Hubble Legacy Archive, ESA, NASA; Processing: Hunter Wilson   Explanation: The first identified compact galaxy group, Stephan's Quintet is featured in this eye-catching image constructed with data drawn from the extensive Hubble Legacy Archive. About 300 million light-years away, only four galaxies of the group are actually locked in a cosmic dance of repeated close encounters. The odd man out is easy to spot, though. The ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

  Shell Galaxies in Pisces Image Credit & Copyright: Stephen Leshin Explanation: This colorful cosmic skyscape features a peculiar system of galaxies cataloged as Arp 227 some 100 million light-years distant. Swimming within the boundaries of the constellation Pisces, Arp 227 consists of the two galaxies prominent on the left; the curious shell galaxy NGC 474 and its blue, spiral-armed neighbor NGC 470. The faint, wide arcs or shells of NGC 474 could have been formed ... Full Story

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture of the Day

  NGC 4449: Close-up of a Small Galaxy Credit: Data - Hubble Legacy Archive, ESA, NASA; Processing - Robert Gendler   Explanation: Grand spiral galaxies often seem to get all the glory. Their young, blue star clusters and pink star forming regions along sweeping spiral arms are guaranteed to attract attention. But small irregular galaxies form stars too, likeNGC 4449, about 12 million light-years distant. Less than 20,000 light-years across, the small island ... Full Story

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