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Εργαλεία Θεμάτων Αξιολόγηση: Αξιολόγηση θέματος: 91 Ψήφοι, 4,95 κατά μέσο όρο. Τρόποι εμφάνισης
  #91  
Παλιά 10-04-07, 09:02
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Saturn from Below
Credit: CICLOPS, JPL, ESA, NASA

Explanation: Swooping below Saturn, the Cassini spacecraft spied several strange wonders. Visible in the distance are some of the many complex rings that orbit the Solar System's second largest planet. In the foreground looms the gigantic world itself, covered with white dots that are clouds high in Saturn's thick atmosphere. Saturn's atmosphere is so thick that only clouds are visible. At the very South Pole of Saturn lies a huge vortex that is a hurricane-like storm showing no sign of dissipating. The robotic Cassini spacecraft took the above image in January from about one million kilometers out, resolving details about 50 kilometers across.

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  #92  
Παλιά 11-04-07, 08:02
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The Arms of NGC 4258
Credit: X-ray: Andrew Wilson (UMCP) et al., NASA, CXC
Optical: DSS / IR: NASA, JPL-Caltech / Radio: NRAO, AUI, NSF

Explanation: Better known as M106, bright spiral galaxy NGC 4258 is about 30 thousand light years across and 21 million light years away toward the northern constellation Canes Venatici. The yellow and red hues in this composite image show the galaxy's sweeping spiral arms as seen in visible and infrared light. But x-ray and radio data (blue and purple) reveal two extra spiral arms -- arms that don't align with the more familiar tracers of stars, gas, and dust. In fact, an analysis of the x-ray and radio data suggests that the anamolous arms are composed of material heated by shock waves. Detected at radio wavelengths, powerful jets originating in the galaxy's core likely drive the shocks into the disk of NGC 4258.

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  #93  
Παλιά 12-04-07, 09:07
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The Cone Nebula Neighborhood
Credit & Copyright: Adam Block and Tim Puckett

Explanation: Cosmic clouds of hydrogen gas and dust abound in this gorgeous skyscape, stretching through Monocerous in the neighborhood of The Cone Nebula. A dark, obscuring dust cloud, the simple, sculpted shape of the Cone Nebula is near the lower left edge. Surrounded by the red glow of hydrogen gas, the cone points up, toward bright, blue-white S Monocerotis, a quadruple system of very massive, hot stars. S Mon itself is also surrounded by intriguing red emission nebulae characteristic of star forming regions while above and to the right of S Mon, a larger region of fainter emission silhouettes expansive dark markings on the sky. Yellowish open star cluster Trumpler 5 is below picture center, with the striking blue reflection nebula, IC 2169 near the center right edge. The curious compact cometary shape near the bottom edge is Hubble's Variable Nebula. Over 31 hours of exposure time went into this truly remarkable, 2.5 degree wide, color mosaic.

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  #94  
Παλιά 13-04-07, 09:46
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Seven Dusty Sisters
Credit: NASA, JPL-Caltech, J. Stauffer (SSC, Caltech)

Explanation: Hurtling through a cosmic dust cloud a mere 400 light-years away, the lovely Pleiades or Seven Sisters star cluster is well-known in astronomical images for its striking blue reflection nebulae. At visible wavelengths, the starlight is scattered and reflected by the dust, but in this portrait in infrared light by the Spitzer Space Telescope, the dust itself glows. The false color image spans about 1 degree or seven light-years at the distance of the Pleiades, with the densest regions of the dust cloud shown in yellow and red hues. Exploring this young nearby cluster, the Spitzer data have revealed many cool low mass stars, brown dwarfs or failed stars, and possible planetary debris disks. Want to see the Pleiades tonight? Look near Venus, the brilliant evening star in the west just after sunset.

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  #95  
Παλιά 14-04-07, 07:50
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Venus by the Lake
Credit & Copyright: Tunc Tezel

Explanation: Finding Venus in the night sky is not too hard these days. Now appearing as the evening star, Venus rules as the brightest celestial beacon in west just after sunset. And if you can find Venus tonight, you can also easily find the lovely Pleiades star cluster (aka M45) close by. In this serene skyview, recorded on Tuesday near Bolu, Turkey, Venus and the Pleiades are on the right, with brilliant Venus reflected in the calm waters of the small lake in the foreground. Left of Venus, the bright star Aldebaran anchors the V-shaped Hyades star cluster. Farther left are stars of the familiar constellation Orion with Rigel, at the foot of Orion, also reflected in the lake. Meanwhile, Sirius, in Canis Major, is the brightest star on the left side of the view. But the bright terrestrial light below Sirius is not a reflection, it's just a light near the lake shore

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  #96  
Παλιά 15-04-07, 09:13
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M3: Inconstant Star Cluster
Credit & Copyright: J. Hartman & (Harvard CfA) & K. Stanek (Ohio State U.)

Explanation: Star clusters appear constant because photographs of them are frozen in time. In reality, though, cluster stars swarm the center and frequently fluctuate in brightness. Although the time it takes for stars to cross a cluster is about 100,000 years, the time it takes for a star to fluctuate noticeably can be less than one night. In fact, the above time lapse movie of bright globular cluster M3 was taken over a single night. Most of the variable stars visible above are RR Lyrae stars, stars that can quickly double their brightness while becoming noticeably bluer. Furthermore, RR Lyrae stars vary their light in a distinctive pattern that allows unique identification. Lastly, since RR Lyrae stars all have the same intrinsic brightness, identifying them and measuring how dim they appear tells how far they are, since faintness means farness. These distances, in turn, help calibrate the scale of the entire universe.

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  #97  
Παλιά 16-04-07, 08:09
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MWC 922: The Red Square Nebula
Credit & Copyright: Peter Tuthill (Sydney U.)

Explanation: What could cause a nebula to appear square? No one is quite sure. The hot star system known as MWC 922, however, appears to be imbedded in a nebula with just such a shape. The above image combines infrared exposures from the Hale Telescope on Mt. Palomar in California, and the Keck-2 Telescope on Mauna Kea in Hawaii. A leading progenitor hypothesis for the square nebula is that the central star or stars somehow expelled cones of gas during a late developmental stage. For MWC 922, these cones happen to incorporate nearly right angles and be visible from the sides. Supporting evidence for the cone hypothesis includes radial spokes in the image that might run along the cone walls. Researchers speculate that the cones viewed from another angle would appear similar to the gigantic rings of supernova 1987A, possibly indicating that a star in MWC 922 might one day itself explode in a similar supernova.

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  #98  
Παλιά 17-04-07, 08:32
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Water Claimed in Evaporating Planet HD 209458b
Illustration Credit: European Space Agency, Alfred Vidal-Madjar (Institut d'Astrophysique de Paris, CNRS), NASA

Explanation: Planet HD 209458b is evaporating. It is so close to its parent star that its heated atmosphere is simply expanding away into space. Some astronomers studying this distant planetary system now believe they have detected water vapor among the gases being liberated. This controversial claim, if true, would mark the first instance of planetary water beyond our Solar System, and indicate anew that life might be sustainable elsewhere in the universe. HD 209458b is known as a hot Jupiter type system because it involves a Jupiter-type planet in a Mercury-type orbit. Although spectroscopic observations from the Hubble Space Telescope are the basis for the water detection claim, the planetary system is too small and faint to image. Therefore, an artist's impression of the HD 209458b system is shown above. Research into the atmospheric composition of HD 209458b and other extrasolar planets is continuing.

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  #99  
Παλιά 18-04-07, 09:26
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Barred Spiral Galaxy NGC 1672
Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage Team (STScI / AURA) Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA);
Acknowledgment: L. Jenkins (GSFC/U. Leicester)

Explanation: Many spiral galaxies have bars across their centers. Even our own Milky Way Galaxy is thought to have a modest central bar. Prominently barred spiral galaxy NGC 1672, pictured above, was captured in spectacular detail in this recently released image taken by the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope. Visible are dark filamentary dust lanes, young clusters of bright blue stars, red emission nebulas of glowing hydrogen gas, a long bright bar of stars across the center, and a bright active nucleus that likely houses a supermassive black hole. Light takes about 60 million years to reach us from NGC 1672, which spans about 75,000 light years across. NGC 1672, which appears toward the constellation of the Swordfish (Dorado), is being studied to find out how a spiral bar contributes to star formation in a galaxy's central regions.

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  #100  
Παλιά 19-04-07, 09:11
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NGC 5139: Omega Centauri
Credit & Copyright: Martin Pugh

Explanation: Centaurus is one of the most striking constellations in the southern sky. The Milky Way flows through this celestial expanse whose wonders also include the closest star system to the Sun, Alpha Centauri, and the largest globular star cluster in our galaxy, Omega Centauri (aka NGC 5139). This sharp telescopic view of Omega Centauri shows off the central regions of the cluster of about 10 million stars. Omega Cen itself is about 15,000 light-years away and 150 light-years in diameter - the largest of 150 or so known globular star clusters that roam the halo of our galaxy. Though most star clusters are composed of stars with the same age and composition, the enigmatic Omega Cen exhibits the presence of different stellar populations with a spread of ages and chemical abundances. In fact, Omega Cen may be the remnant core of a small galaxy merging with the Milky Way.

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  #101  
Παλιά 20-04-07, 08:09
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Pantheon Earth and Moon
Credit & Copyright: Soeren Dalsgaard

Explanation: Could this be a picture of the Earth and Moon from space? It certainly looks like it at first glance, with a dark, cratered Moon standing off from planet Earth's lovely blue disk surrounded by a nurturing atmosphere. In fact, this view looks up into the dome of the ancient Pantheon in Rome. The Earth's blue disk is really the daytime sky with clouds seen through a nine meter diameter central opening in the dome. The circular opening, or oculus, was intended as the source of light for the building's interior. The Moon is actually direct sunlight streaming through the oculus onto the dome's inner ribbed structure. Historian Soeren Dalsgaard snapped the intriguing picture in February and comments that for almost two thousand years the rays of the Sun have traced a steady path on the inside of the Pantheon's cupola. A testament to Roman architecture and engineering, the Pantheon's dome is said to symbolize the vault of the heavens.

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  #102  
Παλιά 21-04-07, 08:24
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3D Face on Mars
Credit: NASA, MRO, MGS, Stereo Anaglyph: Patrick Vantuyne

Explanation: Get out your red/blue glasses and gaze down on this weathered mesa on Mars. Of course, described as a rock formation which resembles a human head in a 1976 NASA press release, this mesa is also famous as the Face on Mars. The sharp stereo image was created by combining high resolution pictures from cameras on two different spacecraft in Mars orbit - Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Mars Global surveyor. It shows rugged details of the approximately 2 kilometer wide, isolated hill - similar to mesa landforms on planet Earth - rising some 240 meters above the plains of the martian Cydonia region. This remarkable 3D view exaggerates the hill's vertical dimensions.

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  #103  
Παλιά 22-04-07, 08:58
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Smooth Sections of Asteroid Itokawa
Credit & Copyright: ISAS, JAXA

Explanation: Why are parts of this asteroid's surface so smooth? No one is yet sure, but it may have to do with the dynamics of an asteroid that is a loose pile of rubble rather than a solid rock. The unusual asteroid has been visited recently by the Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa that has been documenting its unusual structure and mysterious lack of craters. Recent analyses of the border regions between smooth and rugged sections of Itokawa indicate that jostling of the asteroid might be creating segregation between large and small rocks near the surface, like the Brazil nut effect. In late 2005, Hayabusa actually touched down on one of the smooth patches, dubbed the MUSES Sea, and collected soil samples that are to be returned to Earth for analysis. Hayabusa will start its three-year long return trip to Earth this month. Computer simulations show that 500-meter asteroid Itokawa may impact the Earth within the next few million years.

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  #104  
Παλιά 23-04-07, 09:06
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A Supply Ship Approaches the Space Station
Credit: ISS Expedition 13 Crew, NASA

Explanation: Looking out a window of the International Space Station brings breathtaking views. Visible vistas include a vast and colorful Earth, a deep dark sky, and an occasional spaceship sent to visit the station. Visible on September 20 of last year was a Soyuz TMA-9 spacecraft carrying not only supplies but also three new astronauts. A few days before this picture was taken, the U.S. Space Shuttle Atlantis had just departed. The three new approaching astronauts were American Michael E. Lopez-Alegria, Russian Mikhail Tyurin, and Iranian-American Anousheh Ansari. Ms. Ansari visited the International Space Station (ISS) briefly as a paying spaceflight participant for the Federal Space Agency of Russia, and wrote a popular blog about her experiences. Lopez-Alegria would lead the ISS crew dubbed Expedition 14, which included the flight engineer and Soyuz pilot Tyurin, flight engineer American Sunita Williams, and flight engineer German Thomas Reiter. Tyurin returned to the Earth with Lopez-Alegria this past week.

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  #105  
Παλιά 25-04-07, 08:47
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Carina Nebula Panorama from Hubble
Credit: NASA, ESA, N. Smith (U. California, Berkeley) et al., and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

Explanation: In one of the brightest parts of Milky Way lies a nebula where some of the oddest things occur. NGC 3372, known as the Great Nebula in Carina, is home to massive stars and changing nebula. Eta Carinae, the most energetic star in the nebula, was one of the brightest stars in the sky in the 1830s, but then faded dramatically. The Keyhole Nebula, visible left the center, houses several of the most massive stars known and has also changed its appearance. The entire Carina Nebula spans over 300 light years and lies about 7,500 light-years away in the constellation of Carina. Pictured above is the most detailed image of the Carina Nebula ever taken. The controlled color image is a composite of 48 high-resolution frames taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and released to honor its 17th anniversary. Wide-field annotated and zoomable image versions are also available.

Tomorrow's picture: open space

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