astro nerge

Today’s photo offering from NASA:
space-repairs.jpg

…even though it’s going to blow up my site layout.

Comparison Views of
Source: Hubblesite.org

spacewalk.jpg

orion starblast astro telescope.K, being the amazing human being that he is, got me a really great amateur telescope for my birthday. Being that it is winter in the bay area we don’t have a lot of clear skies, but last Saturday night there was a break in the relentless rain. K & I toted that telescope to the end of our street where there is very little light pollution (comparatively, for being in an urban environment). And there the universe was opened to us.

We saw the moon in such detail that we saw craters inside the craters. We looked at Mars, could see its orange, round form. We looked at the Orion Nebula and could see stars inside the nebula.

Now, I do regularly go to the Chabot Observatory to look through their big telescopes (it’s free!), and I have seen globular cluster M-15 at least a dozen times. but there is nothing like seeing this stuff in your own backyard (or so) with your own telescope. It was really stunning.

Water discovery fuels hope to colonize the moon

Adding to the nerd quotient of this site, you may now find some handy RSS feeds from NASA for your astro nerge needs. Yes, my love/hate relationship with NASA continues. To whet your appetite, below is a photo from the Image of the Day gallery. I find looking at Hubble photos gives me a good sense of perspective on life.

ngc6240-chandra.jpg

It seems to me that every time I mention to others that I’d like to be an astronaut and/or go on the space station, there’s a bit of snickering. Evidently, that’s a fine idea if your 8 years old, or an aeronautics major at a college, but it’s a silly thought for a middle-aged web designer.

Well, that may be, but you’d think it’d be an even more far-fetched for a clown. Yet, looky here: a fucking clown is on his way to the ISS. OH, THE INDIGNITY OF IT ALL!

It appears ISS is going over my house at 6:04 pm (and supposedly it can be seen in the daylight at dawn and dusk), perhaps I’ll go look at it tonight squint angrily at it. And its goddamn clown.

planckfirstlightsample.jpgI just got the news that the European Space Agency has their first new map of feeble microwave emissions. They’ve got a doo-dad, the technical term for the Planck spacecraft, which is doing and entire-sky survey of the Cosmic Microwave Background, the most comprehensive survey to date.

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