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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:22 pm 
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I have always thought of the universe as a giant's fart - a big bang, then expansion as the gas rushes and then diffuses away. I suppose some bright spark could disprove (without igniting!) my idea?

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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2016 12:41 pm 
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ESA's LISA Pathfinder is another part of the search for gravitational waves, and this has now passed a milestone, which is just an amazing feat of technology.

Image
[ (c) Copyright ESA/ATG medialab ]

Basically, the plan was, to have two detectors, in perfect and permanent freefall through space, so effectively completely "weightless", taking the measurements. T

How they did it (very briefly) was
1. Position the satellite at a point approx 1.5m km towards the Sun, where the gravity from Earth and Sun balance out (orbiting the first Sun–Earth ‘Lagrangian point’, L1.)
2. Release the two detectors so that they float freely within their respective containers
3. Using an incredibly sensitive steering mechanism, "fly" the spacecraft around the detectors! - no force will ever be applied to the free-floating detectors again, save the gravity that keeps them in orbit, and the spacecraft will when necessary make minute adjustments to its position, to keep the freefalling detectors in the centre of their housings.

So, the theory goes, the only thing that can cause a disturbance of the detectors would be a passing gravitational wave.

A fuller explanation of this amazing experimental mission here:
http://m.esa.int/Our_Activities/Space_S ... Pathfinder






Last edited by Ferocious Aardvark on stardate Jun 26, 3013 11:27 am, edited 48,562,867,458,300,023 times in total

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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2016 1:42 pm 
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That's an incredible feat of engineering and science. Hopefully, they'll get some results back in the future.






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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2016 4:24 am 
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Awesome new images of the plane of our galaxy, the Milky Way, from the Southern hemisphere
Quote:A spectacular new image of the Milky Way has been released to mark the completion of the APEX Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy (ATLASGAL). The APEX telescope in Chile has mapped the full area of the Galactic Plane visible from the southern hemisphere for the first time at submillimetre wavelengths — between infrared light and radio waves — and in finer detail than recent space-based surveys.
http://www.eso.org/public/news/eso1606/


Image

To the right of the main page are links to various sizes of image, zoomable etc.

A number of images released including this superb mp4 in ultra HD
http://cdn2.eso.org/videos/ultra_hd/eso1606a.mp4






Last edited by Ferocious Aardvark on stardate Jun 26, 3013 11:27 am, edited 48,562,867,458,300,023 times in total

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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 8:47 am 
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Some nice pics of the recent spectacular Northern Lights display. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-35741589






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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2016 7:41 pm 
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Europe's newest climate satellite Sentinal-3A is sending back some stunning images of our planet. Check these out...

Click me

:D






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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2016 10:09 am 
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Those images are astonishingly detailed, amazing stuff






Last edited by Ferocious Aardvark on stardate Jun 26, 3013 11:27 am, edited 48,562,867,458,300,023 times in total

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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2016 3:54 pm 
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Ferocious Aardvark wrote:Pluto's icy plains - truly astonishing detail, the resolution is around 80 metres per pixel
This is a screengrab of a partial image, but for the best view go to the page and click on the full length image and scroll. Awesome.

Image

http://www.nasa.gov/image-feature/pluto ... w-horizons

Some interesting theories on a "mobile mantle" on Pluto https://www.ras.org.uk/education-and-ca ... ile-mantle






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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:55 am 
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An awesome new view of the shadow of the Moon crossing the face of the Earth during the 9th March solar eclipse - as seen from the DSCVR (Deep Space Climate Observatory), from a distance of 1 million miles.

http://www.space.com/32224-moon-shadow- ... video.html






Last edited by Ferocious Aardvark on stardate Jun 26, 3013 11:27 am, edited 48,562,867,458,300,023 times in total

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 Post subject: Re: The Astronomy Thread
PostPosted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 8:54 am 
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Congrats to Toynbee School in Chandler’s Ford whose magnificent and intrepid teddy bear, Derek, has soared to 95,000 feet and in so doing, proved the shape of the globe! ;)

Image

Sadly, at the moment poor Derek is missing, probably abducted by aliens, but his achievement will forever make him a giant among bears. The amazing and heart-wrenching video of his epic and fearless journey here:

https://youtu.be/ZokqwxBzDbI






Last edited by Ferocious Aardvark on stardate Jun 26, 3013 11:27 am, edited 48,562,867,458,300,023 times in total

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