A group for people who enjoy the stars. :)

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Latest Activity: Sep 17

Discussion Forum

All things Pluto

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

The Five Planets in the Sky.

Started by Visvakarman Svetasvatara-Upanish Jun 17. 0 Replies

From movie graphics to scientific tool

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Joan Denoo Mar 26. 3 Replies

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Comment by Visvakarman Svetasvatara-Upanish on January 30, 2015 at 1:35pm

I live in California, and Jupiter has been out for the last couple days, probably longer. I'm new to star gazing. And according to this site, I've been missing a lot more:

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 9, 2014 at 8:45am

The predicted merging of Andromeda & Milky way is interesting.  I'd like to be around 8 billion years from now to see it.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 8, 2014 at 6:13pm

I think so, too. 

Comment by Loren Miller on November 8, 2014 at 5:42pm
That is positively gorgeous, Joan!
Comment by Joan Denoo on November 8, 2014 at 4:29pm

Gemini legacy - photo of day   

Polar Ring Galaxy NGC 660   beautiful

"a sharp composite of broad and narrow band filter image data from the Gemini North telescope on Mauna Kea. Over 20 million light-years away and swimming within the boundaries of the constellation Pisces, NGC 660's peculiar appearance marks it as a polar ring galaxy. A rare galaxy type, polar ring galaxies have a substantial population of stars, gas, and dust orbiting in rings nearly perpendicular to the plane of the galactic disk. The bizarre-looking configuration could have been caused by the chance capture of material from a passing galaxy by a disk galaxy, with the captured debris eventually strung out in a rotating ring. The violent gravitational interaction would account for the myriad pinkish star forming regions scattered along NGC 660's ring. The polar ring component can also be used to explore the shape of the galaxy's otherwise unseen dark matter halo by calculating the dark matter's gravitational influence on the rotation of the ring and disk. Broader than the disk, NGC 660's ring spans over 50,000 light-years."

Comment by Joan Denoo on June 22, 2014 at 4:11pm

Persistent Saturnian Auroras 
Image Credit: J. Clarke (Boston U.) & Z. Levay (STScI), ESANASA

Astronomy Picture of the Day

2014 June 22 
Comment by Lillie on May 16, 2013 at 7:53pm

The solar eruption is not as amazing as the fact they can take a picture like this of a solar eruption.

Comment by Joan Denoo on April 9, 2013 at 12:38pm

NGC 3132: The Southern Ring Nebula

"It's the dim star, not the bright one, near the center of NGC 3132 that created this odd but beautiful planetary nebula. Nicknamed the Eight-Burst Nebula and the Southern Ring Nebula, the glowing gas originated in the outer layers of a star like our Sun. In this reprocessed color picture, the hot purplish pool of light seen surrounding this binary system is energized by the hot surface of the faint star. Although photographed to explore unusual symmetries, it's the asymmetries that help make this planetary nebula so intriguing. Neither the unusual shape of the surrounding cooler shell nor the structure and placements of the cool filamentary dust lanes running across NGC 3132 are well understood."

Comment by Joan Denoo on March 8, 2013 at 1:52am

A 3D View of the Veil Nebula - March 6, 2013

Finnish photographer J.P. Metsavainio has found a way to add the third dimension to his photography. "He developed an intriguing experimental technique to convert astrophotos into volumetric models of well-known nebulae, then use the models to create stunning 3D views of these objects."


Comment by Joan Denoo on September 21, 2012 at 8:52pm

Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2012

Thanks to Richard Lawrence for this splendid video. The images, the vastness of time and space, the wonder of the universe with all its diversity of colors, forms, textures, even in the sky; especially in the sky. When I see all of this and realize I am part of it all, that I have the opportunity to bear witness to such splendor, that even though small, I participate in its reality. 


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