Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Space...they keep moving the final frontier further and further out

I'm on the island for the International Year of Astronomy. It's the first anniversary of that year actually. There was a press conference today sponsored by the American Astronomical Society. THey released some new images and data analysis from the Hubble, Chandra and Spitzer telescopes that make very cool pictures but also show things about the universe's distant past. Here's a link to the official press release - http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2010/01

Here's a link to the location. Not sure how long the pics will be up, but the whole island is worth investigating --- http://slurl.com/secondlife/Astronomy%202009/27/246/27

Here's a big overview pic - a not bad crowd - that's me in the sweater sitting on the left.

Here's the pic from the Hubble using the Wide Field Camera 3 the shuttle astronauts installed early in 2009.  These pics were taken in October & November 2009. The dots aren't stars - they're galaxies! And the smallest, faintest ones are the light those galaxies emitted 13 billion years ago.

and here's the picture from the Spitzer telescope of the Magellenic cloud, specifically it's tail. They're studying the life cycle of space dust and it's role in galaxy formation. The blue colored dots are the older stars; they spit out dust. The green areas are organic dust and they're the hottest areas, and the red areas are stars forming that are covered by dust

And here's a cool avatar that was present - a steampunk flying cat

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