Posted: 29 Jan 2015 11:30 AM PST
Cassiopeia A, or Cas A for short, is one of the most well studied supernova remnants in our galaxy. But it still holds major surprises. Astronomers have now generated a new 3-D map of its interior using the astronomical equivalent of a CAT scan. They found that the Cas A supernova remnant is composed of a collection of about a half dozen massive cavities -- or 'bubbles.'
Oh, wow! I love this kind of thing, even though I barely understand it. I used to subscribe to Astronomy magazine, but have dropped everything that I don't need to stay alive.... Being old really sux, but as W.C. Fields, it beats the alternative. I think.
Canadian/American SF author Spider Robinson completed a novel that Robert a. Heinlein only began to write notes for about our own sun being blown up deliberately, by nobody knew who. It's called Variable Star, and the last I heard, he was writing a totally original sequel. Fascinating book, I'll have to check his web site to see what he's up to...he lives on Bowen Island near Vancouver, B.C., and has had some dreadful and traumatic family stuff going on in the past few years, so I don't know how much writing he has been doing lately.
I just checked Spider's web site, and am crying. His father died on Dec. 24th (at 90-something), but even worse, his 40-year-old daughter died of metastatic breast cancer on Dec. 5th. His wife Jeanne, and co-author on the Stardance series died in 2010....
I cannot even begin to imagine what that man (and the rest of his family) have been through! And I think I've got problems. HAH!
He's still trying to work on Orphan Stars, the sequel I mentioned, but can barely force himself to type and feed himself at the moment.
Felaine, what a sad series of events. I have no read anything by Spider; his descriptions sound like a gentle man. I can't even imagine going through cancer treatments without insurance. Without insurance, I would have been wiped out, financially.
My contribution of the constellation Cassiopeia seems silly compared to this sad news.
We have so much light pollution in SoCal...except for some deserts and beaches...that I have to find the Big Bear and follow the pointer stars in the bowl to find Polaris. The Little Bear is mostly invisible. Cassiopeia is easier to find, but the ones I look for mostly are the winter constellations; Orion, Taurus, and the Pleiades...all in the same area of the sky..