NASA Astronomy Pictures Of The Day [Week 4/2010]

Share it with your friends Like

Thanks! Share it with your friends!

Close … Please subscribe to Science & Reason:
• http://www.youtuNASA Astronomy Pictures Of The Day [Week 4/2010]

Please SUBSCRIBE to Science & Reason:

► Annular Eclipse Over Myanmar
A hole crossed the Sun for a few minutes, as seen across a thin swath of planet Earth. The event on January 15 was actually an annular solar eclipse, and the hole was really Earth’s Moon, an object whose dark half may appear even darker when compared to the tremendously bright Sun. The Moon was too far from Earth to create a total solar eclipse, but instead left well placed observers with a bright surrounding circle called the ring of fire.

► Kemble’s Cascade
An asterism is just a recognized pattern of stars that is not one the 88 official constellations. For example, one of the most famous (and largest) asterisms is the Big Dipper within the constellation Ursa Major. But this pretty chain of stars, visible with binoculars towards the long-necked constellation of Camelopardalis, is also a recognized asterism. Known as Kemble’s Cascade, it contains about 20 stars nearly in a row.

► Messier 88
Charles Messier described the 88th entry in his 18th century catalog of Nebulae and Star Clusters as a spiral nebula without stars. Of course the gorgeous M88 is now understood to be a galaxy full of stars, gas, and dust, not unlike our own Milky Way. In fact, M88 is one of the brightest galaxies in the Virgo Galaxy Cluster some 50 million light-years away. Spiral galaxy M88 spans over 100,000 light-years.

► Mars Opposition 2010
Mars is at opposition, opposite the Sun in planet Earth’s sky. For this opposition, Mars remains just over 99 million kilometers away, not a particularly close approach for the Red Planet.

► Polar Ring Galaxy NGC 660
NGC 660 lies near the center of this intriguing field of galaxies swimming within the boundaries of the constellation Pisces. Over 20 million light-years away, its peculiar appearance marks it as a polar ring galaxy. A rare galaxy type, polar ring galaxies have a substantial population of stars, gas, and dust orbiting in rings nearly perpendicular to the plane of a flat galactic disk. Broader than the disk, NGC 660’s ring spans about 40,000 light-years.

► Tethys Behind Titan
What’s that behind Titan? It’s another of Saturn’s moons: Tethys. The robotic Cassini spacecraft orbiting Saturn captured the heavily cratered Tethys slipping behind Saturn’s atmosphere-shrouded Titan late last year. The largest crater on Tethys, Odysseus, is easily visible on the distant moon.

► The Magellanic Stream
Spanning the sky toward the majestic Clouds of Magellan is an unusual stream of gas: the Magellanic Stream. The origin of this gas remains unknown but likely holds a clue to the origin and fate of our Milky Way’s most famous satellite galaxies: the LMC and the SMC. Until recently, two leading genesis hypotheses have been considered: that the stream was created by gas stripped off these galaxies as they passed through the halo of our Milky Way, or that the stream was created by the differential gravitational tug of the Milky Way. Recently, however, wide angle radio images have shown that the Magellanic Stream is longer and older than previously thought, perhaps as old as 2.5 billion years.

► The Magnificent Tail of Comet McNaught
Comet McNaught, the Great Comet of 2007, was the brightest comet of the last 40 years. Its spectacular tail spread across the sky and was breathtaking to behold from dark locations for many Southern Hemisphere observers. The head of the comet remained quite bright and was easily visible to even city observers without any optical aide. The robotic Ulysses spacecraft fortuitously flew through Comet McNaught’s tail and found, unexpectedly, that the speed of the solar wind dropped significantly.

► The Mysterious Voynich Manuscript
The ancient text has no known title, no known author, and is written in no known language: what does it say and why does it have many astronomy illustrations? The mysterious book was once bought by an emperor, forgotten on a library shelf, sold for thousands of dollars, and later donated to Yale. Possibly written in the 15th century, the over 200-page volume is known most recently as the Voynich Manuscript, after its (re-)discoverer in 1912.


FranciscoVelasquezDJ says:

@lazyperfectionist1 Galileo discovered the planets revolved around the sun, instead of earth? But the mayas knew that way before he did… ALIENS?

jupitergirl100 says:

@antisaintfond i might make it i have a's in math too

jupitergirl100 says:

every picture of space i see the more i want to become an astronomer. is it hard? i'm trying really hard. i got second highest grade in science for my grade. o. o must be astronomer!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lucas Lechuga says:

Yeah, I have to agree with the others regarding the music. It made me laugh. Great images though.

akwinata1 says:

Why can't we just know? Very good question, worthy of St. Thomas Aquinas. God knows more about us than we know about ourselves. Why God created us? God didn't have to create man or anything. God wanted to create us. Because it is not out of necessity, but out of God's free will, it is impossible to know this through natural reason. Man has to tell woman that he loves her to make it possible for her to give him yes or no as an answer. So God had to revealed to us our supernatural goal, it is God

naggedd says:

the song sounds like it's from an elementary school astronomy video. a song designed to keep the kids interested.

Ryanrm says:

Agreed. Great pics, very cheesy song.

IsleBeeBach says:

Good pictures – very annoying tune.

Mitchel Z says:

I had to mute the damn video!!! Nice pics

mraks3 says:

Ok, the music isn`t something for everyone

Richard Bono says:

…and of gargling to get tingly fresh breath!!

Richard Bono says:

…It's too big to be a space station…I have a very bad feeling about this… 🙂

TheSilviatoscano says:

Stuning pics. I really DONT like the music.

pacman529 says:

what is that song?

Write a comment