Saturday, August 1, 2009

Nothing like Wyoming skies...

You can click to enlarge any of these photos; however, I'm ordering you to click and enlarge this one.

The Milky Way Over Devils Tower

Credit & Copyright: Wally Pacholka (TWAN)

Explanation: Was Devils Tower once an explosive volcano? Famous for its appearance in films such as Close Encounters, the origin of Devil's Tower in Wyoming, USA is still debated, with a leading hypothesis holding that it is a hardened lava plume that probably never reached the surface to become a volcano. The lighter rock that once surrounded the dense volcanic neck has now eroded away, leaving the dramatic tower. High above, the central band of the Milky Way galaxy arches across the sky. Many notable sky objects are visible, including dark strands of the Pipe Nebula and the reddish Lagoon Nebula to the tower's right. Green grass and trees line the moonlit foreground, while clouds appear near the horizon to the tower's left. Unlike many other international landmarks, mountaineers are permitted to climb Devils Tower.

WFPC3 earns its keep.

New shot of the July 19th Jupiter impact.

SN 1006

Became visible in the year 1006.
(Actually exploded 7,000 years prior.)
Debris cloud is 60 ly across.

Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Zolt Levay (STScI)

Eagle Nebula

Photo Credit: Emanuele Colognato

Sky this week.

This date in history.

1950 - Patrick AFB is named after General Mason Patrick

1985 - Buran Cosmonaut Group 2 selected. Things wouldn't work out well for the test pilots or the Buran program, as a general rule.

And finally, happy birthday and a big welcome home to Koichi Wakata.

Top 5 objects you can see with a small telescope.

Nancy at UT has a nice little article on the top five astronomical objects which can be seen with a small telescope. It's a good little list. Of course, the comments section is equally entertaining, with people sniping about why M such-and-such was left out and how they can't see all those things with their telescope, etc.

Disclaimer: If you look at the Orion Nebula through your telescope (or any telescope, for that matter), it ain't gonna look like this, so please don't call Meade to complain.

Friday, July 31, 2009

NLCs in Mongolia.

The cool stuff always happens in places like Mongolia.
Here are some NLCs a fellow on board an Air France flight snapped a few days ago.

A sound which will soon become a distant memory.

For a few moments this morning, my sis thought a bomb had exploded in her neighborhood.
It didn't take her long to realize what it was.

When I lived in Florida, it never failed to bring a smile when I heard that sound; it was always good to know they were home.

The astro-hots are home!

Welcome home, STS-127!

Personally, the front porch would have been the FIRST thing I installed on my space station.
How else you gonna drink iced tea and chat with the neighbors?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Useful website.

Tonight's Sky lets you input your lat/long and choose which types of objects you'd like to see and what you'll be viewing with.

Very cool, though it makes me ill that I can't see squat for all the light pollution.

Here ya go.