Category Archives: Astronomy

Too Cool Not to Share

Here’s the latest beautiful video pinging around the internet, a time-lapse video taken from the International Space Station as it orbits the earth. Beautiful imagery of stars, aurora, lightning, city lights, clouds . . . our pale blue dot in all its glory.

Best viewed in full screen.

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Filed under Astronomy, Fun Stuff, Science

Curiosity Rover Trailer

NASA’s new Mars rover, called Curiosity, launches this November, and like before, they’ve produced a nice trailer about it, mostly focusing on the landing.

 

That multi-stage landing mechanism worries me, having lots of failure points.  But the last three landers touched down on Mars without a hitch, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

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Filed under Astronomy, Space Program

It’s a big universe!

Fun video

Yakko’s Universe Song

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Crescent Moon

Beautiful shot of the crescent Moon, as seen from the International Space Station:

This is what the Moon looked like 16 times today #FromSpace W... on Twitpic

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Lunar eclipses are lovely

A lunar eclipse is when the Moon slips into the Earth’s shadow and turns a lovely blood-red color.  It happens once every couple of years or so, which makes it far more likely to be seen than, say, a solar eclipse.  Depending on where you live, you might not see a solar eclipse in your entire lifetime.

The two biggest problems with observing lunar eclipses, however, is that they by definition occur only at night, and they can take several hours from start to finish, unlike a few minutes for a solar eclipse.  So with my schedule, it’s highly unlikely I can dedicate that kind of time to watch a lunar eclipse in its entirety.  Plus they more interesting to watch with others, and no one else in my family is interested in staying up all night with me.  I’ve ‘seen’ a handful of lunar eclipses, but by that I only mean I’ve seen the moon in partial shadow for a brief minute or two before I’m pulled away elsewhere, like to bed because I have to get up and go to work in a few short hours.

Fortunately, there’s another way.  A clever fellow filmed a lunar eclipse in time-lapse photography to make a lovely but short video of a lunar eclipse.  The Moon was against the Milky Way Galaxy when it occurred, so when the lights go out, you can see our galactic home in all its glory. 

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Filed under Astronomy, Fun Stuff