Astronomy

 Cosmic Tribune

Mercury takes 7.5 hours to transit the sun

Mercury takes 7.5 hours to transit the sun

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, Howard Brown-Greaves] On May 9, the diminutive disk of Mercury spent about seven and a half hours crossing in front of the Sun as viewed from the general vicinity of Earth. It was the second of 14 transits of the Solar System’s innermost planet in the 21st century. Captured […]

 Cosmic Tribune

View from and of a robotic observatory in the Canary Islands

View from and of a robotic observatory in the Canary Islands

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, Mads Fredslund Andersen, Stellar Astrophysics Centre, Aarhus Univ., Denmark] Near first quarter, the Moon in March lights this snowy, rugged landscape, a view across the top of Tenerife toward La Palma in the Canary Islands Spanish archipelago. The large Teide volcano, the highest point in Spain, looms over the […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Meanwhile, on Mars it’s just another day, but where does Curiosity go for a tire change?

Meanwhile, on Mars it’s just another day, but where does Curiosity go for a tire change?

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, NASA, JPL-Caltech, MSSS] Where is NASA’s rover Curiosity going on Mars? Its geographical goals are on the slopes of Mount Sharp, whose peak is seen in the background on the right. A key scientific goal, however, remains to better assess when and where conditions on Mars were once suitable […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Omega Centauri is the largest globular star cluster and also nearby … and ancient

Omega Centauri is the largest globular star cluster and also nearby … and ancient

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, Roberto Colombari] This huge ball of stars predates our Sun. Long before humankind evolved, before dinosaurs roamed, and even before our Earth existed, ancient globs of stars condensed and orbited a young Milky Way Galaxy. Of the 200 or so globular clusters that survive today, Omega Centauri is the […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Light reaching us from these colliding galaxies emitted when dinosaurs lived

Light reaching us from these colliding galaxies emitted when dinosaurs lived

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, FORS Team, 8.2-meter VLT Antu, ESO; Processing & License: Judy Schmidt What makes this spiral galaxy so long? Measuring over 700,000 light years across from top to bottom, NGC 6872, also known as the Condor galaxy, is one of the most elongated barred spiral galaxies known. The galaxy’s protracted […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Guess which 2 celestial objects are within our Milky Way galaxy

Guess which 2 celestial objects are within our Milky Way galaxy

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, Bob Franke] Comet C/2014 S2 (PanSTARRS) poses for a Messier moment in this telescopic snapshot from April 18. In fact it shares the 1.5 degree wide field-of-view with two well-known entries in the 18th century comet-hunting astronomer’s famous catalog. Outward bound and sweeping through northern skies just below the […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Home away from home

Home away from home

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, STS-132 Crew, Expedition 23 Crew, NASA] The International Space Station is the largest object ever constructed by humans in space. The station perimeter extends over roughly the area of a football field, although only a small fraction of this is composed of modules habitable by humans. The station is […]

 Cosmic Tribune

After 14-year dance with Saturn, Cassini prepares for grand finale

After 14-year dance with Saturn, Cassini prepares for  grand finale

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, Cassini Imaging Team, SWRI, JPL, ESA, NASA] Cassini, a robot spacecraft launched in 1997 by NASA, became close enough in 2002 to resolve many rings and moons of its destination planet: Saturn. At that time, Cassini snapped several images during an engineering test. Several of those images were combined […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Billionaires to fund nano-tech search for alien life with tiny craft traveling at one-fifth the speed of light

Billionaires to fund nano-tech search for alien life  with tiny craft traveling at one-fifth the speed of light

Famed astrophysicist Stephen Hawking and Russian billionaire Yuri Milner just announced a bold new initiative to visit Alpha Centauri — the second-closest star to Earth — within our lifetimes. “For the first time in human history we can do more than just gaze at the stars, we can actually reach them,” Milner told a crowd […]

 Cosmic Tribune

Why many galaxies, seen edge on, are extremely thin

Why many galaxies, seen edge on, are extremely thin

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, NASA, ESA, Hubble Legacy Archive; Processed & Copyright: Hunter Wilson] Why is this galaxy so thin? Many disk galaxies are actually just as thin as NGC 5866, pictured above, but are not seen edge-on from our vantage point. One galaxy that is situated edge-on is our own Milky Way […]