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Hubble at 25: the cosmos at its most breathtaking – in pictures

The Hubble telescope was launched in April 1990. Ever since, it has been providing astronomers with breathtaking images of the cosmos<p>Hubble at 25: the wonder of the universe laid bare<p><b>THE CARINA NEBULA</b><p>One of the largest regions of star-birth in the galaxy, the Carina Nebula is made up of vast towers …

Cosmology

National Park Service Doesn't Want Drones Buzzing Mount Rushmore

The National Park Service is taking steps to ban drones from 84 million acres of public lands and waterways, saying the unmanned aircraft annoy …

How to travel around the world in 80 days

In Jules Verne's classic adventure novel, Phileas Fogg had a devil of a time trying to travel around the world in 80 days. But in the 21st century, circumnavigating the globe has become a bit of a breeze: all you need is a round-the-world (RTW) ticket. In fact, a dedicated (if masochistic) …

Secret O’ahu: sights only the locals know about

Most people think of O’ahu strictly as a beach vacation interspersed with hiking and awash with cocktails. But what they don't realise is that there is a lot going on that has nothing to do with the island’s sandy beaches, flip-flopped feet, or the big, sugary, impossibly coloured drinks of …

Where to find the best bird's-eye views of London

Hold on to your hats - these are the most awe-inspiring places from which to check out London from on high.<p>1. The Shard<p>London’s latest icon offers the capital’s highest viewing platform. From the first viewpoint at The View from The Shard (www.theviewfromtheshard.com), at dizzying level 69, you’ll …

Walking to Glacier Isobel

APOD: Lisbon Honey Moon (2014 Jun 21) Image Credit & Copyright: Miguel Claro http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140621.html Explanation: The Sun set on Friday the 13th as a full Honey Moon rose, captured in this well-planned time-lapse sequence. Lisbon, Portugal's Christ the King monument is in the foreground, about 6 kilometers distant from camera and telephoto lens. During the days surrounding today's solstice (June 21, 10:51 UT) the Sun follows its highest arc through northern hemisphere skies as it travels along the ecliptic plane. At night the ecliptic plane is low, and the Full Moon's path close to the ecliptic was also low, the rising Moon separating more slowly from the distant horizon. Northern moon watchers were likely to experience the mysterious Moon Illusion, the lunar orb appearing impossibly large while near the horizon. But the photo sequence shows the Moon's apparent size did not change at all. Its light was initially scattered by the long line-of-sight through the atmosphere though, and a deeper reddened color gave way to a paler gold as the Full Moon rose into the night. http://www.miguelclaro.com/wp/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140621 #APOD

Hot Or Not... For Sunspots

We all know the dangers of getting too much sun: things like sunburn and heat stroke can really ruin a summer day. But did you realize that activity on the sun's roiling surface can also cause us a lot of grief?<p>"Sunspots," which look like black holes in the sun's surface, are where bundles of …

APOD: Persistent Saturnian Auroras (2014 Jun 22) Image Credit: J. Clarke (Boston U.) & Z. Levay (STScI), ESA, NASA http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140622.html Explanation: Are Saturn's auroras like Earth's? To help answer this question, the Hubble Space Telescope and the Cassini spacecraft monitored Saturn's South Pole simultaneously as Cassini closed in on the gas giant in January 2004. Hubble snapped images in ultraviolet light, while Cassini recorded radio emissions and monitored the solar wind. Like on Earth, Saturn's auroras make total or partial rings around magnetic poles. Unlike on Earth, however, Saturn's auroras persist for days, as opposed to only minutes on Earth. Although surely created by charged particles entering the atmosphere, Saturn's auroras also appear to be more closely modulated by the solar wind than either Earth's or Jupiter's auroras. The above sequence shows three Hubble images of Saturn each taken two days apart. http://www.stsci.edu/ http://www.bu.edu/dbin/astronomy/ http://hubblesite.org/news/2005/06 http://spacetelescope.org/news/heic0504/ http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/ http://www.nasa.gov/hubble Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140622 #APOD

Biggest galaxy cluster bigger than thought

El Gordo – the largest galaxy cluster in the universe – is about 3 million billion times more massive than our sun, roughly 43 percent more massive …

Universe

APOD: Lunar Farside (2014 Apr 05) Image Credit: NASA / GSFC / ASU / LRO http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140405.html Explanation: Tidally locked in synchronous rotation, the Moon always presents its familiar nearside to denizens of planet Earth. From lunar orbit, the Moon's farside can become familiar, though. In fact this sharp picture, a mosaic from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's wide angle camera, is centered on the lunar farside. Part of a global mosaic of over 15,000 images acquired between November 2009 and February 2011, the highest resolution version shows features at a scale of 100 meters per pixel. Surprisingly, the rough and battered surface of the farside looks very different from the nearside covered with smooth dark lunar maria. The likely explanation is that the farside crust is thicker, making it harder for molten material from the interior to flow to the surface and form the smooth maria. http://lroc.sese.asu.edu/ http://www.nasa.gov/lro Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140405 #APOD

Update on the search for planets in the Alpha Centauri system

Apparent trajectory of Alpha Centauri B around Alpha Centauri A<p>The apparent trajectory of star B around star A is indicated by the elongated ellipse, …

NASA set to debut online software catalog April 10

(Phys.org) —Get ready for a stimulating software catalog. You may want to write NASA CAT. next to Thursday, April 10, on your calendar. That is the …

Saturn's Moon Enceladus Is Now A Top Candidate For Life

New gravity measurements determined Enceladus has a liquid water sea about as large as Lake Superior.<p>Buried under miles of ice, astronomers have detected a liquid water sea on one of Saturn's moons, Enceladus. The sea is about the size of Lake Superior and it touches Enceladus' silicate core… which …

Astronomy

Monster 'El Gordo' galaxy cluster is bigger than thought

Astronomers have weighed the largest known galaxy cluster in the distant universe and found that it definitely lives up to its nickname: El Gordo …

Total Lunar Eclipse and Solar 'Ring of Fire' Top April's Stargazing Events

Stargazers have a lot to look forward to this month.<p>The best celestial events in April include eclipses of the sun and moon, a meteor shower and good …

APOD: Fresh Tiger Stripes on Saturn's Enceladus (2014 Apr 06) Image Credit: Cassini Imaging Team, SSI, JPL, ESA, NASA http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140406.html Explanation: Do underground oceans vent through the tiger stripes on Saturn's moon Enceladus? Long features dubbed tiger stripes are known to be spewing ice from the moon's icy interior into space, creating a cloud of fine ice particles over the moon's South Pole and creating Saturn's mysterious E-ring. Evidence for this has come from the robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn. Pictured above, a high resolution image of Enceladus is shown from a close flyby. The unusual surface features dubbed tiger stripes are visible in false-color blue. Why Enceladus is active remains a mystery, as the neighboring moon Mimas, approximately the same size, appears quite dead. Most recently, an analysis of slight gravity deviations has given an independent indication of underground oceans. Such research is particularly interesting since such oceans would be candidates to contain life. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA06254 http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2014-103 http://sci.esa.int/cassini-huygens/53938 Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140406 #APOD

E=mc2: Einstein's equation that gave birth to the atom bomb

Albert Einstein's famous equation E=mc2 for the first time connected the mass of an object with its energy and heralded a new world of physics<p>This is the most famous equation in the history of equations. It has been printed on countless T-shirts and posters, starred in films and, even if you've …

The Week In Numbers: An Alien Ocean, Beer-Flavored Jelly Beans, And More

<b>310 miles</b>: the diameter of Saturn's moon Enceladus, whose large underground ocean is now a top candidate for extraterrestrial life<p><b>10 million microbes per square centimeter</b>: the population density of human skin (see what's living with you here)<p><b>$9</b>: the price per pound of Jelly Belly's new …

Enceladus

Registrant WHOIS contact information verification

APOD: A Solar Eclipse from the Moon (2014 Apr 07) Video Credit: NASA, Surveyor 3; Acknowledgement: R. D. Sampson (ECSU) http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140407.html Explanation: Has a solar eclipse ever been seen from the Moon? Yes, first in 1967 -- but it may happen again next week. The robotic Surveyor 3 mission took thousands of wide angle television images of the Earth in 1967, a few of which captured the Earth moving in front of the Sun. Several of these images have been retrieved from the NASA archives and compiled into the above time-lapse video. Although the images are grainy, the Earth's atmosphere clearly refracted sunlight around it and showed a beading effect when some paths were blocked by clouds. Two years later, in 1969, the Apollo 12 crew saw firsthand a different eclipse of the Sun by the Earth on the way back from the Moon. In 2009, Japan's robotic Kaguya spacecraft took higher resolution images of a similar eclipse while orbiting the Moon. Next week, however, China's Chang'e 3 mission, including its Yutu rover, might witness a new total eclipse of the Sun by the Earth from surface of the Moon. Simultaneously, from lunar orbit, NASA's LADEE mission might also capture the unusual April 15 event. Another angle of this same event will surely be visible to people on Earth -- a total lunar eclipse. http://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/nmc/spacecraftDisplay.do?id=1967-035A http://www.easternct.edu/physicalscience/faculty_website/sampson.html Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=140407 #APOD

Mad Coding Skillz? Put Them To Work

Way, way back in the day (we’re talking 1979) there was an arcade game called Asteroids. A multi-directional shooter, your job was to take out the fast-moving asteroids on your screen.<p>Fast forward to 2014, and we now understand a whole lot more about these big hunks of rock. Asteroids are a …

Earthquakes in Yellowstone: ‘Elevated but not unusual’

Heard about the recent earthquakes in Yellowstone? How about that video of bison fleeing the park? Does it mean the supervolcano is about to blow? …

National Parks

How It Works: A Private Moon Lander

Here are two rovers built to win the Google Lunar XPrize.<p>Next year, robots will land on the moon, competing for the Google Lunar XPrize. The contest offers $40 million in rewards, including a $20 million grand prize. Winning is fairly straightforward: Safely land a privately funded spacecraft, move …

NASA Just Released Surreal Footage Of A Solar Flare On The Sun

The AP has just released video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. The video shows a "mid-level" solar flare, or powerful burst of radiation on the sun's surface, that erupted on April 2.<p>NASA calls it "graceful" in the YouTube footage, setting classical music behind the blends of wavelengths of …