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Discussion Forum

Possible shape of the universe

Started by Donald L. Engel. Last reply by Kiljoy616 Mar 18, 2016. 9 Replies

All things Pluto

Started by Joan Denoo. Last reply by Gerald Payne Sep 17, 2015. 2 Replies

The Five Planets in the Sky.

Started by Visvakarman Svetasvatara-Upanish Jun 17, 2015. 0 Replies

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Comment by Joan Denoo on September 7, 2016 at 1:53pm

Eclipse to Sunset 
Image Credit & CopyrightLuc Perrot (TWAN)

Explanation: September's eclipse of the Sun is documented in the 68 frames of this timelapse composite. Starting at 1pm local time a frame every 4 minutes follow's the progress of the New Moon across the solar disk. Taken near the centerline of the narrow eclipse path, the series of exposures ends with a golden sunset. Balanced rock cairns in the foreground line a beach on the southern side of Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean, near the village of Etang-Salé. Of course, the close balance in apparent size createsdrama in eclipses of the Sun by the Moon as seen from planet Earth. In an annular eclipse, the Moon's silhouette is just small enough to show the solar disk as a narrow ring-of-fire at maximum eclipse phase.

Comment by Idaho Spud on January 11, 2016 at 3:54pm

Gerald, thanks for the image of the space station between the moon & earth.

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 7, 2016 at 2:35pm

Venus and Saturn Meet in the Morning Sky

January 7, 2016 By Brian Ventrudo

"Look to the southeastern sky before dawn on January 9 to see Venus and Saturn make a close approach to each other before sunrise. Venus is the brighter of the two, about 60x brighter than Saturn. The two planets make their closest approach at about 4h Universal Time when they are just 1/10 of a degree apart. This timing favors observers in Europe and Africa."

Comment by Joan Denoo on August 2, 2015 at 9:51am

Chicago in Winter

Thanks, Loren for your invitation to watch CBS Sunday morning. I also found this photo that may interest Carl and the Illinois members. 

Comment by Loren Miller on August 2, 2015 at 9:35am

CBS Sunday Morning did a piece this morning about preserving the night sky and minimizing light pollution.  It's worth a look!

Comment by Gerald Payne on August 2, 2015 at 9:06am

Right of centre is the transiting space station.

Comment by Gerald Payne on August 2, 2015 at 9:03am


The International Space Station, with a crew of six onboard, is seen in silhouette as it transits the moon.
Comment by Gerald Payne on June 14, 2015 at 2:58pm
14 June 2015

Rosetta's lander Philae has woken up after seven months in hibernation on the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

The signals were received at ESA's European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt at 22:28 CEST on 13 June. More than 300 data packets have been analysed by the teams at the Lander Control Center at the German Aerospace Center (DLR).

"Philae is doing very well: It has an operating temperature of -35ºC and has 24 Watts available," explains DLR Philae Project Manager Dr. Stephan Ulamec. "The lander is ready for operations."

For 85 seconds Philae "spoke" with its team on ground, via Rosetta, in the first contact since going into hibernation in November.

When analysing the status data it became clear that Philae also must have been awake earlier: "We have also received historical data – so far, however, the lander had not been able to contact us earlier."

Now the scientists are waiting for the next contact. There are still more than 8000 data packets in Philae’s mass memory which will give the DLR team information on what happened to the lander in the past few days on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

Philae shut down on 15 November 2014 at 1:15 CET after being in operation on the comet for about 60 hours. Since 12 March 2015 the communication unit on orbiter Rosetta was turned on to listen out for the lander.

For further information, please contact:

ESA Media Relations Office
Tel: +33 1 53 69 72 99

Comment by Gerald Payne on June 4, 2015 at 2:34pm

These things were worked out in the 1890's by a Russian schoolteacher who also understood the need for a second stage insert for uniform orbital movement. Mars was the first choice for an elevator, when steel was the strongest material available. Times have changed, and it appears only a matter of time until nanotechnology will make sky elevators commonplace.

Comment by Idaho Spud on June 4, 2015 at 2:08pm

It would be very nice Gerald.  The view would be fantastic.


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