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Irregular Galaxy NGC 55

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dj, 13/08/2009 - 04:10

Irregular Galaxy NGC 55
Credit & Copyright: Don Goldman

Explanation: Irregular galaxy NGC 55 is thought to be similar to the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). But while the LMC is about 180,000 light-years away and is a well known satellite of our own Milky Way Galaxy, NGC 55 is more like 6 million light-years distant and is a member of the Sculptor Galaxy Group. Classified as an irregular galaxy, in deep exposures the LMC itself resembles a barred disk galaxy. However, spanning about 50,000 light-years, NGC 55 is seen nearly edge-on, presenting a flattened, narrow profile in contrast with our face-on view of the LMC. Just as large star forming regions create emission nebulae in the LMC, NGC 55 is also seen to be producing new stars. This highly detailed galaxy portrait highlights a bright core crossed with dust clouds, telltale pinkish star forming regions, and young blue star clusters in NGC 55.

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Inside Barringer Meteor Crater

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dm, 11/08/2009 - 13:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/barringer_rowell_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/barringer_rowell.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Inside Barringer Meteor Crater /b br b Credit Copyright: /b a href="http://www.tonyrowell.com/about.shtml"Tony Rowell/a P p b Explanation: /b What happens when a a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meteoroid"meteor/a hits the ground? Usually nothing much, as most a href="http://www.imo.net/"meteors/a are small, and indentations they make are soon eroded away. About 50,000 years ago, however, a large meteor created a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barringer_Crater" Barringer Meteor Crater/a in a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arizona"Arizona/a, a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States"USA/a. Also known simply as a href="http://www.meteorite.com/meteor_crater/"Meteor/a Crater, the resulting a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tLi03bj5z4" impact/a basin spans over a kilometer. Pictured above, a tour group views the inside of a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap990711.html"Barringer Crater/a early last year. In 1920, Barringer Crater was the first feature on Earth to be recognized as an a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090517.html"impact crater/a. Today, over 100 a href="http://www.unb.ca/passc/ImpactDatabase/" terrestrial impact features/a have been identified over planet Earth. a href="http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1999Sci...285...85S" Computer modeling/a indicates that some of the a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canyon_Diablo_(meteorite)" Canyon Diablo impactor/a melted during the impact that created Barringer. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090811.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

T Tauri: A Star is Formed

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dll, 03/08/2009 - 17:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/ttauri_noao_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/ttauri_noao.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b T Tauri: A Star is Formed /b br b Credit a href="http://www.noao.edu/image_gallery/copyright.html"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://salt.uaa.alaska.edu/?d=rector.htm"T. Rector/a (a href="http://salt.uaa.alaska.edu/"U. Alaska Anchorage/a), a href="http://www.noao.edu/staffdir/StaffDir_North_NKittPeak.php" H. Schweiker/a, a href="http://www.noao.edu/wiyn/wiyn.html"WIYN/a, a href="http://www.noao.edu/"NOAO/a, a href="http://www.aura-astronomy.org/"AURA/a, a href="http://www.nsf.gov/"NSF/a P p b Explanation: /b What does a star look like when it is forming? The prototypical example is the a href="http://www.aavso.org/vstar/vsots/0201.shtml"variable star T Tauri/a, visible as the bright orange star near the image center. The orange star centered in this remarkable a href="http://www.noao.edu/image_gallery/html/im1057.html" telescopic skyview/a is T Tauri, prototype of the class of a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T_Tauri_star"T Tauri variable/a stars. Surrounding T Tauri is a dusty yellow cosmic cloud named the a href="http://www.aavso.org/vstar/vsots/0201.shtml"Hind/a's Variable Nebula (NGC 1555/1554). Over 400 light-years away, at the edge of a a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090623.html"molecular cloud/a, both star and nebula a href="http://mira.aavso.org/pipermail/aavso-discussion/ 2004-December/011285.html"are seen/a to vary significantly in brightness but not necessarily at the same time, adding to the mystery of the intriguing region. T Tauri stars are now generally recognized as young -- less than a few million years old -- sun-like stars still in the a href="http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/astro/ gravc.html"early/a stages of a href="http://archive.ncsa.uiuc.edu/Cyberia/Bima/ StarForm.html"formation/a. To a href="http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0406337"further/a complicate the picture, a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mV4ecEbV1s" infrared/a observations indicate that a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T_Tauri"T Tauri itself/a is part of a multiple star system. Surprisingly, due to a close gravitational pass near one of these stars, a href="http://www.daviddarling.info/encyclopedia/T/TTauri.html" T Tauri/a may now be headed out of the system. The dramatic color a href="http://www.noao.edu/image_gallery/html/im1057.html"image above/a captures a region that spans about 4 a href= "http://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/questions/question19.html" light-years/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090803.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Stars, Dust and Nebula in NGC 6559

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dg, 02/08/2009 - 15:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/ngc6559_block_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/ngc6559_block.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Stars, Dust and Nebula in NGC 6559 /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://www.caelumobservatory.com/index.html"Adam Block/a, a href="http://skycenter.arizona.edu/"Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter/a, a href="http://www.as.arizona.edu/"U. Arizona/a P p b Explanation: /b When stars form, pandemonium reigns. A a href="http://zebu.uoregon.edu/text.html"textbook/a case is the star forming region a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap040629.html"NGC 6559/a. Visible a href="http://www.caelumobservatory.com/gallery/n6559.shtml" above/a are red glowing a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/emission_nebulae.html"emission nebulas/a of a href="http://periodic.lanl.gov/elements/1.html"hydrogen/a, blue a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reflection_nebula" reflection nebulas/a of a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap030706.html"dust/a, dark a href="http://www.glyphweb.com/esky/concepts/absorptionnebula.html" absorption nebulas/a of dust, and the stars that formed from them. The a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap030610.html"first massive stars/a formed from the dense gas will emit a href="http://imagers.gsfc.nasa.gov/ems/uv.html" energetic light/a and a href="http://www.peripatus.gen.nz/Astronomy/SteWin.html"winds/a that erode, fragment, and a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap050425.html"sculpt/a their birthplace. And then they a href="http://heasarc.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/snr.html"explode/a. The resulting a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap020424.html"morass/a can be as beautiful as it is complex. After tens of millions of years, the a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6HVTmUjgWU" dust boils/a away, the gas gets swept away, and all that is left is a naked a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap040222.html"open cluster/a of stars. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090802.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

SN 1006 Supernova Remnant

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Ds, 01/08/2009 - 13:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/sn1006c.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0908/sn1006c_c800.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b SN 1006 Supernova Remnant /b br b Image Credit: /b a href="http://www.nasa.gov/"NASA/a, a href="http://www.spacetelescope.org/"ESA/a, Zolt Levay (a href="http://www.stsci.edu/"STScI/a) P p b Explanation: /b A new star, likely the brightest supernova in recorded human history, lit up planet a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060430.html"Earth's sky/a in the year 1006 AD. The expanding debris cloud from the stellar explosion, found in the southerly constellation a href="http://www.seasky.org/pictures/sky7b06.html#Lupus"of Lupus/a, still puts on a cosmic light show across the a href="http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/ ems1.html"electromagnetic/a spectrum. In fact, a href="http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2008/sn1006c/"this composite view/a includes X-ray data in blue from the a href="http://chandra.harvard.edu/index.html"Chandra Observatory/a, optical data in yellowish hues, and radio image data in red. Now known as the SN 1006 a href="http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/science/know_l2/ supernova_remnants.html"supernova remnant/a, the debris cloud appears to be about 60 light-years across and is understood to represent the remains of a white dwarf star. Part of a a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060521.html"binary star system/a, the compact white dwarf gradually captured material from its companion star. The buildup in mass finally triggered a a href="http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0611776"thermonuclear/a explosion that destroyed the dwarf star. Because the distance to the supernova remnant is about 7,000 a href="http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/ cosmic_lookback.html"light-years/a, that explosion actually happened 7,000 years before the light reached Earth in 1006. Shockwaves in the remnant a href="http://arxiv.org/abs/0803.0805"accelerate/a particles to extreme energies and are thought to be a source of the mysterious a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap001202.html"cosmic rays/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090801.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Hubble View: Jupiter Impact

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dv, 31/07/2009 - 11:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/jupimpact_hubble1.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/jupimpact_hubble800.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Hubble View: Jupiter Impact /b br b Credit: /b a href="http://www.nasa.gov"NASA/a, a href="http://www.spacetelescope.org"ESA/a, H. Hammel (Space Science Institute, Boulder, Co.), and the Jupiter Impact Team P p b Explanation: /b This sprawling dark marking is Jupiter's latest impact scar, a debris plume created as a small asteroid or comet disintegrated after plunging into a href="http://www.nineplanets.org/jupiter.html"the gas giant's/a atmosphere. Located in Jupiter's south polar region, the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090723.html"new feature was discovered/a by Australian amateur astronomer Anthony Wesley on July 19. On July 23rd Wesley's discovery was followed up by the Hubble Space Telescope with its newly installed Wide Field Camera 3, creating a href="http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/ 2009/23/"this sharpest view/a of the evolving debris plume. Estimates indicate that the impacting object itself was several hundred meters across. a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap980728.html"Similar impact markings/a were created when pieces of Comet a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap020525.html"Shoemaker-Levy 9/a slammed into Jupiter's cloud bands in July of 1994. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090731.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

6 Minutes 42 Seconds

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dj, 30/07/2009 - 22:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/pano2-s_tafreshi.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/pano2-s_tafreshi.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b 6 Minutes 42 Seconds /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://www.twanight.org/newtwan/ photographers_about.asp?photographer=Babak%20A.%20Tafreshi"Babak Tafreshi/a (a href="http://www.twanight.org/"TWAN/a) P p b Explanation: /b The July 22nd total solar eclipse was a href="http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/ 20jul_longestsolareclipse.htm"the longest of the 21st century/a. From the point of maximum eclipse a href="http://spaceweather.com/eclipses/ gallery_22jul09_page4.htm" along the Moon's shadow track/a across the Pacific Ocean, the Moon completely blocked the Sun for a total of 6 minutes and 39 seconds. But from the deck of this cruise ship the duration of the total a href="http://www.mreclipse.com/Special/SEprimer.html"eclipse phase/a was extended to a whopping 6 minutes and 42 seconds by the ship's motion along the shadow track. This panoramic view of the scene shows the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090726.html"shimmering solar corona/a in a darkened daytime sky, with clouds silhouetted by a bright sky on the distant horizon, beyond the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070610.html"Moon's shadow/a. Mercury can be seen near the eclipsed Sun. Venus lies near the upper right edge of the frame. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090730.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

The Milky Way Over Devils Tower

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dj, 30/07/2009 - 09:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/devilstower_pacholka_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/devilstower_pacholka.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b The Milky Way Over Devils Tower /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://www.astropics.com/about1.html"Wally Pacholka/a (a href="http://www.twanight.org/"TWAN/a) P p b Explanation: /b Was Devils Tower once an explosive volcano? Famous for its appearance in films such as a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Close_Encounters_of_the_Third_Kind" Close Encounters/a, the origin of a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Devils_Tower_National_Monument" Devil's Tower/a in a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wyoming"Wyoming/a, 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 a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070918.html"volcano/a. The lighter rock that once surrounded the dense a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volcanic_neck"volcanic neck/a has now eroded away, leaving the dramatic tower. High a href="http://www.twanight.org/newTWAN/photos.asp?ID=3002054" above/a, the central band of the Milky Way galaxy arches across the sky. Many notable sky objects are a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090519.html"visible/a, including dark strands of the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap020526.html"Pipe Nebula/a and the reddish a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080715.html"Lagoon Nebula/a to the tower's right. Green grass and trees line the moonlit foreground, while clouds appear near the horizon to a href="http://www.nps.gov/deto/faqs.htm"the tower/a's left. Unlike many other international landmarks, mountaineers are permitted to climb a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmeJJk7K3q0"Devils Tower/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090729.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script br b Note: /b a href="http://www.michigan.gov/documents/dnr/FortWilkinsAug2009_286090_7.pdf" An APOD editor will review great space images this Saturday night at Ft. Wilkins, Michigan. /a /DIV

A Floral Aurora Corona

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dm, 28/07/2009 - 18:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/auroracorona_kenwell_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/auroracorona_kenwell.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b A Floral Aurora Corona /b br b Credit Copyright: /b a href="mailto: infocusimagery at telus.net"Zoltan Kenwell/a (Infocus Imagery) P p b Explanation: /b Few auroras show this level of detail. a href="http://spaceweather.com/aurora/images2009/22jul09b/Zoltan-Kenwell3.jpg" Above/a, a standard digital camera captured a particularly active and colorful a href="http://www.exploratorium.edu/learning_studio/auroras/auroraslook.html" auroral corona/a that occurred last week above a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alberta"Alberta/a, a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada"Canada/a. With a shape reminiscent of a a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rQYjZRuAay0"flower/a, the a href="http://spaceweather.com/aurora/gallery_01jul09_page2.htm" spectacular aurora/a had an unusually high degree of a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap020115.html"detail/a. The vivid green and purple a href="http://www.exploratorium.edu/learning_studio/auroras/difcolors.html" auroral colors/a are caused by high atmospheric a href="http://periodic.lanl.gov/elements/8.html"oxygen/a and a href="http://periodic.lanl.gov/elements/1.html"hydrogen/a reacting to a burst of incoming a href="http://www-istp.gsfc.nasa.gov/Education/welect.html"electrons/a. Many a href="http://spaceweather.com/aurora/gallery_01jul09.htm" photogenic auroras/a have been triggered from a a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_wind"solar wind/a stream that recently passed the Earth. The auroras were unexpected because the initiating Sun has been a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080924.html"unusually quiet/a of late. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090728.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script br b Note: /b a href="http://www.michigan.gov/documents/dnr/FortWilkinsAug2009_286090_7.pdf" An APOD editor will review great space images this Saturday night at Ft. Wilkins, Michigan. /a /DIV

NGC 1097: Spiral Galaxy with a Central Eye

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dll, 27/07/2009 - 16:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/ngc1097_spitzer_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/ngc1097_spitzer.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b NGC 1097: Spiral Galaxy with a Central Eye /b br b Credit: /b a href="http://www.nasa.gov/"NASA/a, a href="http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/"JPL-Caltech/a, a href="http://sings.stsci.edu/"SINGS Team/a (a href="http://ssc.spitzer.caltech.edu/"SSC/a) P p b Explanation: /b What's happening at the center of spiral galaxy NGC 1097? No one is sure, but it likely involves a a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supermassive_black_hole" supermassive black hole/a. Matter a href="http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2009arXiv0903.0313D" falling in/a from a a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080622.html"bar of stars/a and gas across the center is likely being heated by an extremely energetic region surrounding the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070114.html"central black hole/a. From afar, the entire central region appears in the a href="http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/Media/releases/ssc2009-14/ssc2009-14a.shtml" above/a false-color a href="http://science.hq.nasa.gov/kids/imagers/ems/infrared.html" infrared/a image as a a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap061112.html"mysterious eye/a. Near the left edge and seen in blue, a smaller a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080909.html"companion galaxy/a is wrapped in the spectacular spiral arms of the large spiral, lit in pink by glowing a href="http://nedwww.ipac.caltech.edu/level5/Mathis/Mathis1.html" dust/a. Currently about 40 thousand a href="http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/cosmic_distance.html" light-years/a from the larger galaxy's center, the gravity of the companion galaxy appears to be reshaping the larger galaxy as it is slowly being destroyed itself. a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap061201.html"NGC 1097/a is located about 50 million light years away toward the constellation of the furnace (a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fornax"Fornax/a). p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090727.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script br b Note: /b a href="http://www.michigan.gov/documents/dnr/FortWilkinsAug2009_286090_7.pdf" An APOD editor will review great space images this Saturday night at Ft. Wilkins, Michigan. /a /DIV

The Big Corona

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dg, 26/07/2009 - 14:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/corona_vangorp_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/corona_vangorp.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b The Big Corona /b br b Credit Copyright: /b a href="http://users.skynet.be/vangorp/"Koen van Gorp/a P p b Explanation: /b Most photographs don't adequately portray the magnificence of the a href="http://www.nineplanets.org/sol.html" Sun/a's corona. Seeing the a href="http://www.lmsal.com/YPOP/Spotlight/Tour/corona2.html" corona/a first-hand during a total a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_solar_eclipse" solar eclipse/a is best. The a href="http://iknow.net/phys_eye_education.html"human eye/a can adapt to see features and extent that a href="http://web.islandnet.com/~yesmag/how_work/film.html" photographic film/a usually cannot. Welcome, however, to the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060620.html"digital/a age. The a href="http://www.koenvangorp.be/events/eclipse_2006.html" above picture/a is a combination of thirty-three photographs that were digitally processed to highlight faint features of a total eclipse that occurred in March of 2006. The images of the a href="http://www.windows.umich.edu/cgi-bin/tour.cgi?link=/sun/atmosphere/corona.html" Sun's corona/a were digitally altered to enhance dim, outlying waves and filaments. a href="http://sunearth.gsfc.nasa.gov/eclipse/eclipse.html" Shadow seekers/a need not fret, though, since as yet there is no way that digital image processing can mimic the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap990902.html"fun/a involved in a href="http://www.exploratorium.edu/eclipse/personal_accounts.html" experiencing/a a total solar eclipse. a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090724.html"Last week/a, a spectacular total a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_lXu9hPPg8" solar eclipse occurred/a over southern Asia, while the The a href="http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEmono/TSE2009/TSE2009fig/TSE2009globe1a.JPG" next total solar eclipse/a will be a href="http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEmono/TSE2010/TSE2010.html" visible from/a the a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Pacific_(musical)"South Pacific/a on 2010 July 11. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090726.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script br b Note: /b a href="http://www.michigan.gov/documents/dnr/FortWilkinsAug2009_286090_7.pdf" An APOD editor will review great space images this Saturday night at Ft. Wilkins, Michigan. /a /DIV

The Eagle Rises

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Ds, 25/07/2009 - 12:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/AS11JK44-6633-34.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/AS11JK44-6633-34_c800.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b The Eagle Rises /b br b Credit: /b Apollo 11, a href="http://www.nasa.gov/"NASA/a - Stereo Image a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/ about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: John Kaufmann (a href="http://history.nasa.gov/alsj/"ALSJ/a) P p b Explanation: /b Get out your a href="http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/Help/ VendorList.html#Glasses"red/blue glasses/a and a href="http://www.apolloarchive.com/apollo_gallery.html"check out/a this remarkable stereo view from lunar orbit. Created from two photographs (a href="http://www.lpi.usra.edu/resources/apollo/ frame/?AS11-44-6633"AS11-44-6633/a, a href="http://www.lpi.usra.edu/resources/apollo/ frame/?AS11-44-6634"AS11-44-6634/a) taken by astronaut Michael Collins a href="http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/apollo/40th/index.html"forty years ago/a during the 1969 Apollo 11 mission, the 3D a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anaglyph_image"anaglyph/a features the lunar module ascent stage, dubbed The Eagle, as it rises to meet the command module in lunar orbit. Aboard the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060107.html"ascent stage/a are Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, the first to a href="http://www.hq.nasa.gov/alsj/a11/a11.html"walk on the Moon/a. The smooth, a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080208.html"dark area/a on the lunar surface is Mare Smythii located just below the equator on the extreme eastern edge of the Moon's near side. Poised beyond the lunar horizon, is our a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap051224.html"fair planet Earth/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090725.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Eclipse over Chongqing, China

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dv, 24/07/2009 - 10:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/tse2009Changqing_heinsius1800.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/tse2009Changqing_heinsius900.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Eclipse over Chongqing, China /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://www.stephan-heinsius.de/"Stephan Heinsius/a P p b Explanation: /b The daytime sky grew dark, the temperature dropped, and lights came on as Chongqing, China, was plunged into the a href="http://shadowandsubstance.com/"Moon's shadow/a during the a href="http://spaceweather.com/eclipses/gallery_22jul09_page3.htm"July 22nd/a total a href="http://www.mreclipse.com/Special/SEprimer.html"solar eclipse/a. This serene, wide-angle view of the event looks to the east over the large, populous city from a newly constructed park. Despite thin clouds, it captures the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080920.html"shimmering solar corona/a just before the end of the eclipse total phase. This total solar eclipse occurred a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090703.html"near Aphelion/a, the point in Earth's elliptical orbit farthest from the Sun, and so the Sun was near its smallest apparent size. It also occurred when the New Moon was a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap071025.html"near Perigee/a, the closest point to Earth in the Moon's elliptical orbit, making the Moon near its largest apparent size. The small Sun and large Moon made this the a href="http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/ 20jul_longestsolareclipse.htm"longest solar eclipse/a of this century. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090724.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Jupiter's New Impact Scar

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dj, 23/07/2009 - 08:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/20090719-155537UTC_wesley.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/20090719-155537UTC_wesley.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Jupiter's New Impact Scar /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://jupiter.samba.org/"Anthony Wesley/a P p b Explanation: /b In July of 1994 pieces of Comet a href="http://www2.jpl.nasa.gov/sl9/sl9.html"Shoemaker-Levy 9 collided/a with planet Jupiter. The explosive impacts sent plumes of debris high into the Jovian atmosphere creating a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap950714.html"dark markings or scars/a, visible for a time against the cloud bands. Remarkably, 15 years later, a href="http://jupiter.samba.org/"another impact scar was discovered/a in the Jovian atmosphere by amateur astronomer Anthony Wesley as he examined images of the gas giant taken from his home observatory just outside Murrumbateman NSW Australia. Jupiter's south pole is at the top in this July 19 discovery image, with a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070312.html"Jupiter rotating/a from right to left. The dark marking, also likely caused by a comet or asteroid impact, is near the top of the view, left of a pre-existing, whitish, oval-shaped storm. NASA's a href="http://www.nasa.gov/topics/solarsystem/features/ jup-20090720.html"Infrared Telescope Facility images/a from Mauna Kea, Hawaii later confirmed the likely impact site's dark scar and plume of particles in Jupiter's upper atmosphere. Since 2006, major discovery observations by amateur astronomers have also included two a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080523.html"red spots on Jupiter/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090723.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

The Lagoon Nebula in Gas, Dust, and Stars

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dc, 22/07/2009 - 19:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/m8_rodil_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/m8_rodil.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b The Lagoon Nebula in Gas, Dust, and Stars /b br b Credit Copyright: /b a href="http://florencior.fotoastronomia.net/index.html"Florencio Rodil/a P p b Explanation: /b Stars are battling gas and dust in the Lagoon Nebula but the photographers are winning. Also known as M8, a href="http://florencior.fotoastronomia.net/imagenes/preferidas/m8_HaSHO+ha_50.jpg" this photogenic nebula/a is a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap011229.html"visible/a even without binoculars towards the a href= "http://www.astro.wisc.edu/~dolan/constellations/extra/constellations.html" constellation/a of a href= "http://www.astro.wisc.edu/~dolan/constellations/constellations/Sagittarius.html" Sagittarius/a. The energetic processes of a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap030816.html"star formation/a create not only the colors but the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap031228.html"chaos/a. The a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/emission_nebulae.html"red-glowing gas/a, shown on the above left in a href="http://astroprofspage.com/archives/1500"re-assigned colors/a, results from high-energy starlight striking interstellar a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen"hydrogen/a gas. The a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090707.html"Trifid nebula/a is visible on the far right. The dark a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap030706.html"dust/a a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap010928.html"filaments/a that lace a href="http://www.seds.org/messier/m/m008.html"M8/a were created in the atmospheres of cool a href="http://www.astro.keele.ac.uk/workx/starlife/StarpageS_26M.html" giant stars/a and in the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap990803.html"debris/a from a href="http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/science/know_l1/supernovae.html" supernovae/a explosions. The light from M8 we see today left about a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3rd_millennium_BC"5,000 years ago/a. Light takes about 50 years to cross this section of a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090519.html"M8/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090722.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

The Horsehead Nebula

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dm, 21/07/2009 - 17:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/horsehead_noao_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/horsehead_noao.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b The Horsehead Nebula /b br b Credit a href="http://www.noao.edu/image_gallery/copyright.html"Copyright/a: /b a href="http://www.noao.edu/noao/scistaff/sharp.html"Nigel Sharp/a (a href="http://www.noao.edu/"NOAO/a), a href="http://www.noao.edu/kpno/kpno.html"KPNO/a, a href="http://www.aura-astronomy.org/"AURA/a, a href="http://www.nsf.gov/"NSF/a P p b Explanation: /b One of the most identifiable nebulae in the sky, the a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horsehead_Nebula"Horsehead Nebula/a in a href= "http://www.astro.wisc.edu/~dolan/constellations/constellations/Orion.html" Orion/a, is part of a large, dark, a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090623.html"molecular cloud/a. Also known as a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Emerson_Barnard" Barnard/a 33, the unusual shape was first a href="http://www.seds.org/messier/xtra/ngc/b33.html" discovered/a on a a href="http://www.astro.virginia.edu/~afs5z/photography.html" photographic plate/a in the late 1800s. The red glow originates from a href="http://periodic.lanl.gov/elements/1.html"hydrogen/a gas predominantly behind the nebula, ionized by the nearby bright star a href="http://www.dibonsmith.com/ori_s.htm" Sigma Orionis/a. The darkness of the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap061015.html"Horsehead/a is caused mostly by thick a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap030706.html"dust/a, although the lower part of the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap081126.html"Horsehead/a's neck casts a shadow to the left. Streams of gas leaving the nebula are funneled by a strong a href="http://www-spof.gsfc.nasa.gov/Education/whmfield.html"magnetic field/a. Bright spots in the a href="http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-bib_query?bibcode=1987AJ.....93.1514Z" Horsehead Nebula/a's base are young stars just in the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070218.html"process of forming/a. Light takes about 1,500 years to reach us from the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090224.html"Horsehead Nebula/a. The a href="http://www.noao.edu/image_gallery/html/im0057.html" above image/a was taken with the a href="http://www.noao.edu/0.9m/index.html"0.9-meter telescope/a at a href="http://www.noao.edu/kpno/kpno.html" Kitt Peak National Observatory/a. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090721.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Apollo 11: Onto a New World

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dll, 20/07/2009 - 15:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/smallstep_nasa_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/smallstep_nasa.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Apollo 11: Onto a New World /b br b Credit: /b a href="http://science.ksc.nasa.gov/history/apollo/apollo-11/apollo-11.html" Apollo 11/a, a href="http://www.nasa.gov/"NASA/a P p b Explanation: /b A human first set foot on another world on July 20, 1969. This world was Earth's own a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/moon.html"Moon/a. In honor of today's a href="http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/apollo/"40th anniversary/a, NASA has released a a href="http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/hd/apollo11.html"digitally restored video/a of this a href="http://www.nasa.gov/externalflash/apollo11_landing/index.html" milestone/a in human history. Pictured above is a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neil_Armstrong"Neil Armstrong/a preparing to take the a href="http://history.nasa.gov/alsj/a11/a11.step.html"historic first step/a. On the way down the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap980705.html"Lunar Module/a ladder, a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_11"Armstrong released/a equipment which included the television camera that recorded a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-Sm4kTUGCc"this fuzzy image/a. Pictures and voice transmissions were broadcast live to a world wide audience a href="http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/news/2008/02/080228.aspx" estimated/a at one fifth of the world's population. The Apollo Moon landings have since been described as the a href="http://history.nasa.gov/ap11ann/introduction.htm"greatest technological achievement/a the world has known. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090720.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

From the Moon to the Earth

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dg, 19/07/2009 - 13:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/apollo11return_nasa_big.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/apollo11return_nasa.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b From the Moon to the Earth /b br b Credit: /b a href="http://science.ksc.nasa.gov/history/apollo/apollo-11/apollo-11.html" Apollo 11/a, a href="http://www.nasa.gov/"NASA/a P p b Explanation: /b After the most famous voyage of modern times, it was time to go home. After proving that a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080722.html"humanity/a has the ability to go beyond the confines of a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070325.html"planet Earth/a, the first humans to walk on another world -- a href="http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/armstrong-na.html"Neil Armstrong/a and a href="http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/aldrin-b.html" Buzz Aldrin/a -- flew the ascent stage of their a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_module"Lunar Module/a back to meet a href="http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/collins-m.html" Michael Collins/a in the moon-orbiting a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_Command/Service_Module" Command and Service Module/a. a href= "http://images.ksc.nasa.gov/photos/1969/captions/AS11-44-6642.html" Pictured above/a on 1969 July 21, the ascending spaceship was a href="http://nix.larc.nasa.gov/info;jsessionid=fr4kepin9ri?id=AS11-44-6642orgid=8"captured/a by Collins making its a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-f_0PdwqdQ"approach/a, with the Moon below, and a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap081224.html"Earth far/a in the distance. Tomorrow marks the a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CT1s6YEEl7I" 40th anniversary/a of the a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLu0Ak9Blog" first human moon landing/a. Recently, NASA's moon-orbiting a href="http://lro.gsfc.nasa.gov/"Lunar Reconnaissance/a a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap090622.html"Orbiter/a sent back the a href= "http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/LRO/multimedia/lroimages/apollosites.html" first pictures of most of the Apollo landing sites/a -- including a href="http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/history/apollo/apollo11/index.html" Apollo 11/a -- with enough resolution to see the Lunar Module descent stages left behind. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url = 'http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090719.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Planets, Great Wall, and Solar Eclipse

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dg, 19/07/2009 - 00:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/tse2008GreatWall_cuttle.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/tse2008GreatWallplanets_cuttle_label.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Planets, Great Wall, and Solar Eclipse /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="mailto: tcuttle at bigpond dot net dot au"Terry Cuttle/a Brisbane, Australia P p b Explanation: /b This dramatic skyscape was recorded during the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080821.html"August 2008/a total solar eclipse. The Moon's silhouette surrounded by a glistening solar corona hangs above the Jiayuguan Fort along the western edge of a href="http://www.nasa.gov/vision/space/workinginspace/ great_wall.html"the Great Wall/a of China. Lined-up along the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap040501.html"ecliptic/a plane, all the planets of the inner solar system, Mercury, Venus, Mars, (and Earth!) can also be seen along with a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070309.html"Saturn and/a bright star Regulus, as the a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070610.html"Moon's shadow tracks/a across the landscape. Beyond the Moon's shadow, outside the total eclipse track, sunlight still brightens the sky over mountains on the horizon 30 - 50 kilometers away. a href="http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/highlights/ 50020537.html"Much anticipated/a, the a href="http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEmono/TSE2009/TSE2009.html"2009 July 22nd total solar eclipse/a will again be visible from China. Planets and bright stars will briefly appear in a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap080920.html"darkened daytime skies/a, though a total eclipse won't be seen from the Great Wall. Still, major cities and populated areas lie along the a href="http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEmono/TSE2009/TSE2009fig/ TSE2009globe1a.JPG"2009 total eclipse track/a that begins in India and sweeps eastward across Asia and into the Pacific Ocean. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090718.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

Starburst Galaxy M94

Astronomy Picture of the Day - Dv, 17/07/2009 - 22:10
DIV ALIGN=CENTERa href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/m94full_Paciorek.jpg" IMG SRC="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0907/m94crop_Paciorek.jpg" alt="See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available."/a /DIV DIV STYLE="max-width:40em"P P b Starburst Galaxy M94 /b br b Credit a href="http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/lib/about_apod.html#srapply"Copyright/a: /b a href="mailto:podzamcze23 at gmail dot com"Marcin Paciorek/a P p b Explanation: /b Beautiful island universe a href="http://www.seds.org/messier/m/m094.html"M94 lies/a a mere 15 million light-years distant in the northern constellation of the hunting dogs, a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canes_Venatici"Canes Venatici/a. A popular target for a href="http://astroexpo.pl"earth-based astronomers/a, the face-on a href="http://coolcosmos.ipac.caltech.edu/cosmic_classroom/ multiwavelength_astronomy/multiwavelength_museum/m94.html"spiral galaxy/a is about 30,000 light-years across. Its remarkable features include prominent dust lanes, a bright, point-like nucleus, and a bright, bluish ring dominated by the light of young, massive stars. The massive stars in the ring are all likely less than 10 million years old, indicating the galaxy experienced a well-defined era of rapid star formation. As a result, while the small, bright nucleus is typical of the a href="http://seds.org/~spider/spider/scholarx/ seyferts.html"Seyfert/a class of active galaxies, M94 is also known as a a href="http://chandra.harvard.edu/xray_sources/ starburst.html"starburst galaxy/a. Because M94 is relatively nearby, astronomers can explore a href="http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0011101"in detail/a reasons for the galaxy's burst of star formation. p P script type="text/javascript" digg_url ='http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap090717.html'; digg_skin = 'compact'; /script script src="http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js" type="text/javascript"/script /DIV

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