1. Seeing Stars Spin
This gorgeous image required an all-night exposure, made on a night with no moon and clear skies. It was shot on Blackcomb Mountain in British Columbia, Canada.
The photographer, Kim Eijdenberg, told National Geographic’s My Shot, “It’s amazing to think it’s really us who are spinning in relation to the stars.” That’s because the Earth rotates on its axis and revolves around the sun.
2. The Seven Sisters
The Pleiades (the Seven Sisters, or officially M45) is a tight cluster of stars that is visible to the naked eye on dark nights. Here, the group is shown through the wide-field view of the Mosaic camera on the WIYN 0.9-meter telescope on Kitt Peak, Arizona. Blue, green, and red filters were applied.
The cluster of hot, big stars is accented by blue nebulae that are formed as the starlight scatters off dust particles in the interstellar space between the luminous bodies. The stars of Pleiades are considered middle-aged, and they are located in the constellation Taurus. The cluster is among the nearest to Earth.
The Pleiades are known as Subaru in Japan, a name that was adopted by the car company. Many cultures had rich folklore about the star cluster, from the Norse people to the Berbers, Arabs, Hebrews, and of course the Greeks, who called them the Seven Sisters.
3. Dark Nebula
A dark nebula called LDN 810 is visible through the wide-field view of the Mosaic camera on the Mayall 4-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory. The dark part in the center of the image is made up of gas and dust and is a place where new stars are forming. A faint trail of dust and gas extends from the center of the image to the upper-left corner.
The astral feature was first described in 1962 by B.T. Lynds. This image was made with violet, blue, green, and red filters.
4. Lonely Galaxy
Without neighbors, the “lonely” galaxy DDO 190 is relatively small and lacks clear structure, according to NASA.
In this recently released Hubble Space Telescope picture, older, reddish stars dot the edges of the so-called dwarf irregular galaxy. Younger, bluish stars crowd its interior.
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1. of or pertaining to the cosmos.
2. characteristic of the cosmos or its phenomena.
3. immeasurably extended in time and space; vast.
4. forming a part of the material universe, especially outside of the earth.
Etymology: Greek kosmikós - worldly, universal, equivalent to kósm(os) - world, arrangement.
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The many moons of Saturn.
Two Billion Years After the Big Bang
Credit: S. Pascarelle (Arizona State U.)
Explanation: What did the universe look like two billion years after the Big Bang? According to this computer model, the universe was filled with irregular looking objects like the ones shown above. The simulation then predicts that these blobs of stars and gas collide to form galaxies more similar to the ones we see today. In fact, this simulation bears much resemblance to recent pictures of distant galaxies taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. Galaxy formation is a complex phenomena which only now is becoming understood. Did most galaxies form 5 billion years ago - or 10 billion? Did galaxies fragment from larger sheets of matter, or are they conglomerations of many smaller clumps? Simulations like this one are helping to determine the answer.
Jupiter Explosion Spotted by Amateur Astronomers
Early Monday morning U.S. amateur astronomers spotted a bright light squiggling across the upper cloud deck of Jupiter. Both assumed they’d witnessed a large meteor or comet impact, and so far, professional astronomers seem to agree.
Silver in Space: Metal Found to Form in Distinct Star Explosions
It’s long been known that earthly metals like gold and silver were forged in supernova explosions, but the metals’ exact origins have been shrouded in mystery. Now a new study has identified the unique nuclear recipe for silver in space.