Ryan McCormick

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Star Factory Messier 17. Sculpted by stellar winds and radiation, the star factory known as Messier 17 lies some 5,500 light-years away in the nebula-rich constellation Sagittarius. At that distance, this degree wide field of view spans almost 100 light-years. The sharp, composite, color image utilizing data from space and ground based telescopes, follows faint details of the region's gas and dust clouds against a backdrop of central Milky Way stars. Stellar winds and energetic light from hot, massive stars formed from M17's stock of cosmic gas and dust have slowly carved away at the remaining interstellar material producing the cavernous appearance and undulating shapes. M17 is also known as the Omega Nebula or the Swan Nebula. (Image Credit & Copyright: Subaru Telescope (NAOJ), Hubble Space Telescope, Color data: Wolfgang Promper, Processing: Robert Gendler) #interstellarhd

As seen on #Cosmos: Supernova A supernova is the explosion of a star. It is the largest explosion that takes place in space. Supernovas are often seen in other galaxies. But supernovas are difficult to see in our own Milky Way galaxy because dust blocks our view. In 1604, Johannes Kepler discovered the last observed supernova in the Milky Way. NASA’s Chandra telescope discovered the remains of a more recent supernova. It exploded in the Milky Way more than a hundred years ago. A supernova happens where there is a change in the core, or center, of a star. A change can occur in two different ways, with both resulting in a supernova. The first type of supernova happens in binary star systems. Binary stars are two stars that orbit the same point. One of the stars, a carbon-oxygen white dwarf, steals matter from its companion star. Eventually, the white dwarf accumulates too much matter. Having too much matter causes the star to explode, resulting in a supernova. The second type of supernova occurs at the end of a single star’s lifetime. As the star runs out of nuclear fuel, some of its mass flows into its core. Eventually, the core is so heavy that it cannot withstand its own gravitational force. The core collapses, which results in the giant explosion of a supernova. The sun is a single star, but it does not have enough mass to become a supernova. Seen here is Cassiopeia A, among the best-studied supernova remnants. This image blends data from NASA's Spitzer (red), Hubble (yellow), and Chandra (green and blue) observatories. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI/CXC/SAO #supernova #universe #stars #nasa #space

EarthSky’s 2018 meteor shower guide

Plan ahead now for an awesome year of meteor-watching. Good news! In 2018, the year’s 2 most reliable showers – August Perseids and December Geminids …

Evidence Of Hidden Ocean Found Deep Below Earth's Mantle

The results of the study will help scientists understand Earth's water cycle, and how plate tectonics moves water between the surface of the planet and interior reservoirs, researchers say.<p>The Earth's mantle is the hot, rocky layer between the planet's core and crust. Scientists have long suspected …

The Neurochemistry of Positive Conversations

Why do negative comments and conversations stick with us so much longer than positive ones?<p>A critique from a boss, a disagreement with a colleague, a fight with a friend – the sting from any of these can make you forget a month’s worth of praise or accord. If you’ve been called lazy, careless, or a …

The Memory Hack That Got Me Through Med School–And Inspired A Startup

By Shiv Gaglani4 minute Read<p>As a medical student with a background in neuroscience, I’m constantly searching for brain hacks that will help me learn</i> …

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Visualizing the Infinite Beauty Of Pi And Other Numbers

Thinking about the hugeness of mathematical numbers like pi can give you a headache, but visualising them can be a thing of beauty.<p>Math and art may appear, superficially, like two disparate fields, but they've been in conversation for millennia. One recent example of the synergistic possibilities …

Data Visualization

Astrocytes (in red) are the most abundant cell in the brain and help support neurons (in green) by recycling old cellular byproducts and…

Astrocytes (in red) are the most abundant cell in the brain and help support neurons (in green) by recycling old cellular byproducts and regulating a healthy environment for neuronal function. Unlike other organs of the body where an injury results in a fibrous scar, the brain instead forms an astrocyte scar to promote neuron survival.<p><i>Image by Dr. Shelley Jacobs, McMaster University.</i>

Consciousness is a Process

Last week my fellow Phenom Ed Yong wrote a post about what happens to consciousness when animals die. According to the research Ed described, a rat’s brain shows signs of consciousness for at least 30 seconds after its heart stops.<p>That study got a lot of buzz, understandably, because of what it …

The Decisive Moment and the Brain

As a photographer, you will sooner or later bump into the phrase <i>the decisive moment</i>. The decisive moment is a concept made popular by the street …

The 20 big questions in science

1 What is the universe made of?<p>Astronomers face an embarrassing conundrum: they don't know what 95% of the universe is made of. Atoms, which form everything we see around us, only account for a measly 5%. Over the past 80 years it has become clear that the substantial remainder is comprised of two …

Home

If you don’t have video in your content mix, you’re missing out. It’s simpler to make than ever, ...<p>November 1, 2017<p>Want to know how to make …

Simple harmonic motion

In mechanics and physics, <b>simple harmonic motion</b> is a special type of periodic motion or oscillation motion where the restoring force is directly …

Anatomical Drawings of Leonardo da Vinci

<b>Anatomical Drawings of Leonardo da Vinci</b><p>Anatomy of the Neck, c. 1515 (X)<p>Three Studies of the Shoulder and Neck, c. 1509-1510 (X)

Fractal Biology

A fractal can be described as a pattern that contains itself on smaller and larger scales. One simple example of a fractal is a tree; it contains the same pattern in the trunk, branches, and leaves. Each time the tree branches it forms a new iteration of its fractal shape.<p>Systems form patterns which act as a components on a higher scale. When the type of interaction between components is the same on multiple scales, a fractal emerges.<p>Biological systems appear to have a fractal property, …

The Social Life of Genes: Shaping Your Molecular Composition

140<p>SHARES<p>A few years ago, Gene Robinson, of Urbana, Illinois, asked some associates in southern Mexico to help him kidnap some 1,000 newborns. For …

How the Brain Creates Personality: A New Theory

Are you a mover, a perceiver, a stimulator, or an adapter? Modes of thinking can be understood in terms of how the top and bottom—rather than right and left—parts of the brain interact.<p>It is possible to examine any object—including a brain—at different levels. Take the example of a building. If we …

What is Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle?

The uncertainty principle is one of the most famous (and probably misunderstood) ideas in physics. It tells us that there is a fuzziness in nature, a fundamental limit to what we can know about the behaviour of quantum particles and, therefore, the smallest scales of nature. Of these scales, the …

Male and Female Brains Really Are Built Differently

The hemispheres of women's brains are more interconnected. Does that matter?<p>Ready your knowing smirk, because here comes a scientific gem that’s sure to enliven even the dullest of holiday parties.<p>By analyzing the MRIs of 949 people aged 8 to 22, scientists at the University of Pennsylvania found …

The Shape of Your Head and the Shape of Your Mind

How the archaic study of brain shape and head reading — the origin of terms like “highbrow” and “lowbrow,” “well rounded,” and “shrink” — shaped the modern obsession with the mind. One reason phrenology attracted so many followers was that it seemed to provide the toolbox for the American dream.<p>To …

Why you can't travel at the speed of light

Albert Einstein is famous for many things, not least his theories of relativity. The first, the special theory of relativity, was the one that began the physicist's reputation for tearing apart the classical worldview that had come before. Special relativity, a way of relating the motion of objects …

Black holes should be redefined, says Stephen Hawking in new paper

Black holes don't actually exist in the way we traditionally think of them, renowned physicist Stephen Hawking has proposed in a short but potentially revolutionary paper.<p>Classical theory holds that no energy or information can ever escape a black hole, but the principles of quantum physics suggest …

The Neuroscience Of Superstition

With the Super Bowl in sight, we look at what makes some people accept superstitious beliefs and others reject them.<p>The Super Bowl is this Sunday, which means millions of fans and gamblers alike will spend the next 48 hours looking for signs from the universe about who’s going to win. If Seattle’s …

The Varieties of Scientific Experience: Carl Sagan on Science and Spirituality

I was recently on NPR’s Science Friday to discuss my favorite science books of the year and a listener called in, asking for a recommendation for a good book on science and religion — an excellent question, given the long history of this polarization, which occupied great minds from Galileo to …

The War on Reason

Scientists and philosophers argue that human beings are little more than puppets of their biochemistry. Here's why they're wrong.<p>Aristotle’s definition of man as a rational animal has recently taken quite a beating.<p>Part of the attack comes from neuroscience. Pretty, multicolored fMRI maps make …

Golden Meaning: graphic artists depict the golden ratio – in pictures

A selection of images from Golden Meaning, a book project in which 55 of the world’s top graphic designers illustrate the maths of the golden ratio<p>Read my blogpost about the book here

Physicists find a new 'state of matter' in the eyes of chickens

An unusual arrangement of particles has been discovered in the cells of chicken eyes. It's the first time scientists have seen such a system in a …