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Reflections on the 1970s

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

Reflections on the 1970s Reflections on the 1970s

NGC 7331 and Beyond

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

Big, beautiful spiral galaxy Big, beautiful spiral galaxy

Geminid Fireball over Mount Balang

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

This was a sky to remember. This was a sky to remember.

W5: Pillars of Star Formation

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

How do stars form? How do stars form?

The Potsdam Gravity Potato

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

Why do some places on Earth have higher gravity than others?  Why do some places on Earth have higher gravity than others?

Molecular Cloud Barnard 68

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

Where did all the stars go?  Where did all the stars go?

Apollo 11 Landing Site Panorama

APOD - 7 hours 16 min ago

Have you seen Have you seen

The Infrared Visible Andromeda

APOD - Fri, 12/19/2014 - 03:42

The Infrared Visible Andromeda The Infrared Visible Andromeda

Signs of Europa plumes remain elusive in search of Cassini data

Science Daily - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 19:47
A fresh look at data collected by NASA's Cassini spacecraft during its 2001 flyby of Jupiter shows that Europa's tenuous atmosphere is even thinner than previously thought and also suggests that the thin, hot gas around the moon does not show evidence of plume activity occurring at the time of the flyby. The new research provides a snapshot of Europa's state of activity at that time, and suggests that if there is plume activity, it is likely intermittent.

NASA's Kepler reborn, makes first exoplanet find of new mission

Science Daily - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 19:44
NASA's planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft makes a comeback with the discovery of the first exoplanet found using its new mission -- K2. The discovery was made when astronomers and engineers devised an ingenious way to repurpose Kepler for the K2 mission and continue its search of the cosmos for other worlds.

Origin of long-standing space mystery revealed: Origin of the 'theta aurora'

Science Daily - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 14:09
Scientists have solved a long-standing space mystery - the origin of the 'theta aurora'. Auroras are the most visible manifestation of the Sun's effect on Earth. They are seen as colorful displays in the night sky, known as the Northern or Southern Lights. They are caused by the solar wind, a stream of plasma - electrically charged atomic particles - carrying its own magnetic field, interacting with the earth's magnetic field. Normally, the main region for this impressive display is the 'auroral oval', which lies at around 65-70 degrees north or south of the equator, encircling the polar caps. However, auroras can occur at even higher latitudes. One type is known as a 'theta aurora' because seen from above it looks like the Greek letter theta - an oval with a line crossing through the center.

Kepler proves it can still find planets

Science Daily - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 12:08
To paraphrase Mark Twain, the report of the Kepler spacecraft's death was greatly exaggerated. Despite a malfunction that ended its primary mission in May 2013, Kepler is still alive and working. The evidence comes from the discovery of a new super-Earth using data collected during Kepler's 'second life.'

Crystals on Mars

APOD - Thu, 12/18/2014 - 06:42

Crystals on Mars Crystals on Mars

Surprising theorists, stars within middle-aged clusters are of similar age

Science Daily - Wed, 12/17/2014 - 15:40
An examination of middle-aged star clusters reveals an unexpectedly narrow age range among their stars, suggesting that large groups of stars evolve differently than previously understood.

'Perfect storm' quenching star formation around a supermassive black hole

Science Daily - Wed, 12/17/2014 - 14:10
Astronomers have discovered that modest black holes can shut down star formation by producing turbulence. High-energy jets powered by supermassive black holes can blast away a galaxy's star-forming fuel, resulting in so-called "red and dead" galaxies: those brimming with ancient red stars yet containing little or no hydrogen gas to create new ones.

The hot blue stars of messier 47

Science Daily - Wed, 12/17/2014 - 07:43
Messier 47 is located approximately 1600 light-years from Earth, in the constellation of Puppis (the poop deck of the mythological ship Argo). It was first noticed some time before 1654 by Italian astronomer Giovanni Battista Hodierna and was later independently discovered by Charles Messier himself, who apparently had no knowledge of Hodierna's earlier observation. Although it is bright and easy to see, Messier 47 is one of the least densely populated open clusters. Only around 50 stars are visible in a region about 12 light-years across, compared to other similar objects which can contain thousands of stars.

Moondog Night

APOD - Wed, 12/17/2014 - 02:42

In this night scene from the early hours of November 14, In this night scene from the early hours of November 14,

Rosetta fuels debate on Earth's oceans

Star Stuff - Tue, 12/16/2014 - 20:00
New data shows Earth's oceans came from asteroids not comets. Also; Curiosity confirms Mars was once warm with regular wet seasons, and dark matter could be linked to a hypothetical subatomic particle called the sterile neutrino.

MESSENGER data suggest recurring meteor shower on Mercury

Science Daily - Tue, 12/16/2014 - 18:37
The closest planet to the sun appears to get hit by a periodic meteor shower, possibly associated with a comet that produces multiple events annually on Earth. The clues pointing to Mercury's shower were discovered in the very thin halo of gases that make up the planet's exosphere, which is under study by NASA's MESSENGER (MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) spacecraft.

The Reddening of M71

APOD - Tue, 12/16/2014 - 06:42

Now known to be a globular star cluster at the tender Now known to be a globular star cluster at the tender

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