Kepler Mission To Find Earth-like Planets By Studying Planetary Transits Earlier this week we spoke about finding Earth-like planets, and how hard it is to find them. We would like to see other planets similar to Earth, and we have a few absolutely necessary conditions: the planet must be rocky, solid, dense like Earth, a source of power like a Sun, chemicals resulted from volcanic activity, and liquid water. The most important thing however, is that the planet must be located in the Goldilocks zone, the area where the planet is not too far and not too close from a star. In order to find such planets NASA has begun the Kepler Mission which will last four year. Hubble telescope takes stunning new nebula photo for 23rd birthday This new Hubble image, captured and released to celebrate the telescopeâ ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (AURA/STScI),NASA NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has snapped a spectacular new image of an iconic nebula to celebrate its 23 years of peering deep into the heavens. The Hubble observatory, which launched on April 24, 1990, captured the Horsehead Nebula in infrared light, peering through obscuring veils of dust to reveal the object's hidden features. "The result is a rather ethereal and fragile-looking structure, made of delicate folds of gas -- very different to the nebula's appearance in visible light," mission officials wrote in an image description today (April 19). The new observations allowed astronomers to create a dazzling video of the Horsehead Nebula based on Hubble's photos. The Horsehead Nebula, also known as Barnard 33, is located about 1,500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Orion (The Hunter).
The Post-Industrial Civilization « The Urgeist Movement A recent study by the German Wuppertal Insittut for Climate, Environment and Energy estimates that for every 100% of primary energy (oil, coal, gas) utilized in the production of goods, only about one third comes out as a usable product. The rest is expelled as pollution. Transitioning to sustainability requires a radical decoupling of economic activity from the environment. The environmental problems we face are essentially economic problems. Products will have to be treated from cradle to cradle, instead of cradle to grave; and each phase of this cycle will need scrutiny and improvement in efficiency until we run a zero emissions economy. The German Government, for instance, initiated Gebaudersanierungsprogramm (building-renewal program) that has managed to draw 15% of its home heating energy from renewable sources.
NASAs 'Curiosity' Search for Life Targets Water-Altered Rock This rock's composition is unlike any other Opportunity has investigated during nine years on Mars -- higher in aluminum and silica, lower in calcium and iron. "Based on our current solar-array dust models, we intend to reach an area of 15 degrees northerly tilt before Opportunity's sixth Martian winter," said JPL's Scott Lever, mission manager. "Solander Point gives us that tilt and may allow us to move around quite a bit for winter science observations." Northerly tilt increases output from the rover's solar panels during southern-hemisphere winter. Supernova in Messier 82 discovered by UCL students Updated 23 Jan 2014 - 9:30am Students and staff at UCL’s teaching observatory, the University of London Observatory, have spotted one of the closest supernova to Earth in recent decades. At 19:20 GMT on 21 January, a team of students – Ben Cooke, Tom Wright, Matthew Wilde and Guy Pollack – assisted by Dr Steve Fossey, spotted the exploding star in nearby galaxy Messier 82 (the Cigar Galaxy). The discovery was a fluke – a 10 minute telescope workshop for undergraduate students that led to a global scramble to acquire confirming images and spectra of a supernova in one of the most unusual and interesting of our near-neighbour galaxies.
How to... photo guides : Astronomy Photographer of the Year : Exhibitions : What's on Longing to become an astrophotographer but unsure how it's done and what equipment you need? Already taking pictures of the night sky but looking for some tips and advice? On these pages you’ll find videos from some of the winners of the competition explaining how they got their shot, as well as step-by-step guides from members of our Astronomy Photographer of the Year Flickr group on how to get great results, from getting the right gear through to processing. Picture of the Week In this new Hubble image, we can see an almost face-on view of the galaxy NGC 1084. At first glance, this galaxy is pretty unoriginal. Like the majority of galaxies that we observe it is a spiral galaxy, and, as with about half of all spirals, it has no bar running through its loosely wound arms.
The Universe is Alive “Night, when words fade and things come alive. When the destructive analysis of day is done, and all that is truly important becomes whole and sound again.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupery When you look out into the Universe, what is it that you typically think of? Do you think of reliable, fixed stars and constellations?