Eye on the Sky: Chelyabinsk Meteor

February 19, 2013 at 12:01 am | Posted in Astronomy, Eye on the Sky, Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment

The Chelyabinsk Meteor exploded over Russian skies Friday morning. The 55 foot chunk of rock injured over a 1,000 people with it’s shock wave alone. The following infographic gives a nice summary of the details with some interesting comparisons.

(via Space.com)

Posted By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

Eye on the Sky: Andromeda

February 12, 2013 at 12:00 am | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment

This image of Andromeda is via the Herschel Space Observatory (similar to the Hubble Space Telescope). Andromeda is the nearest major galaxy to our own, though still 2.5 million light years away.

Sensitive to the far-infrared light from cool dust mixed in with the gas, Herschel seeks out clouds of gas where stars are born. The new image reveals some of the very coldest dust in the galaxy — only a few tens of degrees above absolute zero — colored red in this image.

By comparison, warmer regions such as the densely populated central bulge, home to older stars, take on a blue appearance.

Intricate structure is present throughout the 200,000-light-year-wide galaxy with star-formation zones organized in spiral arms and at least five concentric rings, interspersed with dark gaps where star formation is absent.

Andromeda is host to several hundred billion stars. This new image of it clearly shows that many more stars will soon to spark into existence.

(via NASA)

Posted By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

Eye on the Sky: When The Stars Stopped

February 5, 2013 at 7:29 am | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment

Whenever you wonder what all that money spent on NASA amounted to, just remember Hubble. It never ceases to provide a wealth of wonderful imagery, and a reminder of just how big existence is.

“The galaxy in this image, catalogued as 2MASX J09442693+0429569, marks a transitional phase in this process as young, star-forming galaxies settle to become massive, red and dead galaxies.

The galaxy has tail-like features extending from it, typical of a galaxy that has recently undergone a merger. Studying the properties of the light from this galaxy, astronomers see no sign of ongoing star formation; in other words, the merger triggered an event which has used up all the gas. However, the observations suggest that star formation was strong until the very recent past, and has ceased only within the last billion years. This image therefore shows a snapshot of the moment star formation stopped forever in a galaxy.”

(via NASA)

Posted By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

Eye on the Sky: Star Births

December 18, 2012 at 11:05 am | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment


The Hubble Space Telescope captured this image of stars in the remnants of the gas cloud that birthed them.  3 million years ago the density of the internal knots in the gas cloud, collapsed and the stars were born.  While some of the stars were so massive they’ve already exploded in a supernova, the younger stars are so energized they create one of the largest clouds of hydrogen gas known.  This cluster is located in the galaxy M33.

Image Credit: NASA

(via NASA)

Eye on the Sky: Soyuz Re-Entry

December 11, 2012 at 10:39 am | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment

Soyuz Rentry

View from the International Space Station as Expedition 33 begins it’s decent into Earth’s atmosphere.  Expedition 33 Commander Suni Williams and flight engineers Yuri Malenchenko and Aki Hoshide landed on the steppes of Kazakhstan on November 19, 2012.

(via Nasa)

Posted by Synlah for Roqoo Depot

Eye on the Sky: Our Own Milky Way

December 4, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment

Milky WayImage of the Milky Way as seen from the beach at Cape Leveque, Australia was taken by amateur astronomer and photographer, Mike Selway.  The bright orange star just to the right of center, sitting in the middle of the plane is Alpha Centauri.  The big dark spot is a cloud of dust 30 light years across called the Coal Sack.

(via Bad Astronomy)

Posted by Synlah for Roqoo Depot

Eye on the Sky: Galactic Bridge

November 27, 2012 at 2:31 pm | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Science News | Leave a comment

Located a billion light years from earth this bridge composed of hot gas links two galaxy clusters.

Image credits: Sunyaev–Zel’dovich effect: ESA Planck Collaboration; optical image: STScI Digitized Sky Survey

(via NASA)

Posted by Synlah for Roqoo Depot

Big Bang Science News

October 18, 2012 at 1:33 pm | Posted in Big Bang, Miscellaneous, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment
Tags: ,

Holy Tatooine: there’s a planet with 4 suns, and two amateur astronomers found it.  While binary suns planets are rare, they do exist.  Scientist have found approximately 5 of them.  But this discovery is the only known quadruple suns planet.  Citizen scientists, Robert Gagliano and Ian Jek, have christened their find PH1.


Speaking of Planets: the Keppler Space Museum has discovered an earth twin about 600 light years away.  It’s located in the “Goldilocks Zone” (AKA: habital zone) of it’s star which means it’s neither too hot nor too cold for water.  And water, as we all should know, means life.  Scientists imaginatively dubbed this planet keppler 22-B.

(National Geographic) Continue Reading Big Bang Science News…

Big Bang Science News

October 11, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Posted in Big Bang, Miscellaneous, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment
Tags: ,

What a Bummer: Palaeontologists, who actually did all that nitpicky work, have determined that DNA lasts for only about 500 years (half life).  So that means I’m not getting the ultimate T-rex watch dog after all.  Seriously, that would have been the ultimate neighborhood crime watch, don’t you think?

(Nature via Gizmodo)

Attack of the Jurassic Spider: I lied; it’s really the Cruteceous Period, but this is a fantastic frozen-in-time glimpse from our prehistoric past.  That’s a male wasp trapped in the spider’s web (fifteen intact strands of the web were found in the amber).  Another male spider was also trapped in the same amber.

(Discovery News) Continue Reading Big Bang Science News…

Eye on the Sky: Helix Nebula

October 9, 2012 at 11:23 am | Posted in Eye on the Sky, Regular Feature, Science News | Leave a comment

“A dying star is throwing a cosmic tantrum in this combined image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX), which NASA has lent to the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. In death, the star’s dusty outer layers are unraveling into space, glowing from the intense ultraviolet radiation being pumped out by the hot stellar core.

This object, called the Helix nebula, lies 650 light-years away, in the constellation of Aquarius. Also known by the catalog number NGC 7293, it is a typical example of a class of objects called planetary nebulae. Discovered in the 18th century, these cosmic works of art were erroneously named for their resemblance to gas-giant planets.

Planetary nebulae are actually the remains of stars that once looked a lot like our sun. These stars spend most of their lives turning hydrogen into helium in massive runaway nuclear fusion reactions in their cores. In fact, this process of fusion provides all the light and heat that we get from our sun. Our sun will blossom into a planetary nebula when it dies in about five billion years.

When the hydrogen fuel for the fusion reaction runs out, the star turns to helium for a fuel source, burning it into an even heavier mix of carbon, nitrogen and oxygen. Eventually, the helium will also be exhausted, and the star dies, puffing off its outer gaseous layers and leaving behind the tiny, hot, dense core, called a white dwarf. The white dwarf is about the size of Earth, but has a mass very close to that of the original star; in fact, a teaspoon of a white dwarf would weigh as much as a few elephants!

The glow from planetary nebulae is particularly intriguing as it appears surprisingly similar across a broad swath of the spectrum, from ultraviolet to infrared. The Helix remains recognizable at any of these wavelengths, but the combination shown here highlights some subtle differences.

The intense ultraviolet radiation from the white dwarf heats up the expelled layers of gas, which shine brightly in the infrared. GALEX has picked out the ultraviolet light pouring out of this system, shown throughout the nebula in blue, while Spitzer has snagged the detailed infrared signature of the dust and gas in yellow A portion of the extended field beyond the nebula, which was not observed by Spitzer, is from NASA’s all-sky Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). The white dwarf star itself is a tiny white pinprick right at the center of the nebula.

The brighter purple circle in the very center is the combined ultraviolet and infrared glow of a dusty disk circling the white dwarf (the disk itself is too small to be resolved). This dust was most likely kicked up by comets that survived the death of their star.

Before the star died, its comets, and possibly planets, would have orbited the star in an orderly fashion. When the star ran out of hydrogen to burn, and blew off its outer layers, the icy bodies and outer planets would have been tossed about and into each other, kicking up an ongoing cosmic dust storm. Any inner planets in the system would have burned up or been swallowed as their dying star expanded.

Infrared data from Spitzer for the central nebula is rendered in green (wavelengths of 3.6 to 4.5 microns) and red (8 to 24 microns), with WISE data covering the outer areas in green (3.4 to 4.5 microns) and red (12 to 22 microns). Ultraviolet data from GALEX appears as blue (0.15 to 2.3 microns).” ~ NASA Website Image Gallery

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Posted by Synlah for Roqoo Depot
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