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Offline neilep

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Will oldest known dust disk ever form planets?
HARVARD-SMITHSONIAN CENTER FOR ASTROPHYSICS NEWS RELEASE


Astronomers were surprised to discover a 25-million-year-old
protoplanetary disk around a pair of red dwarf stars 350 light-years
away. Gravitational stirring by the binary star system (shown in
this artist's conception) may have prevented planet formation.
Credit: David A. Aguilar (CfA)


..do i really have to point out that this is an artists impression ?..well..yes I do...but I'm impressed at how the artist managed to get there, I mean, he could have taken a camera eh ?

Every rule has an exception. One rule in astronomy, supported by considerable evidence,
 states that dust disks around newborn stars disappear in a few million years. Most likely,
 they vanish because the material has collected into full-sized planets. Astronomers have
 discovered the first exception to this rule -- a 25-million-year-old dust disk that shows
no evidence of planet formation.

"Finding this disk is as unexpected as locating a 200-year-old person," said astronomer
Lee Hartmann of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA), lead author on
the paper announcing the find.

The discovery raises the puzzling question of why this disk has not formed planets despite
its advanced age. Most protoplanetary disks last only a few million years, while the oldest
 previously known disks have ages of about 10 million years.

"We don't know why this disk has lasted so long, because we don't know what makes the
 planetary formation process start," said co-author Nuria Calvet of CfA.

The disk in question orbits a pair of red dwarf stars in the Stephenson 34 system,
 located approximately 350 light-years away in the constellation Taurus. Data from NASA's
Spitzer Space Telescope shows that its inner edge is located about 65 million miles from
the binary stars. The disk extends to a distance of at least 650 million miles. Additional
material may orbit farther out where temperatures are too low for Spitzer to detect it.

SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHT NOW.COM








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Soon in Japan, it'll be raining ads

YOKOSUKA, Japan (AFP) - After being bombarded by commercials on the way to work and watching promotions pop up on the Internet, the Japanese consumer could soon be hit by advertisements where they least expect it: on their hands.
 
Researchers are working on "information rain", taking advertisements to the realm of mock meteorology.

A projector on a tall tripod shows images of raindrops hitting the ground and making ripples,
 in hopes that people will enter the "rainy" area and hold out their palms.


A camera tracks the entrants' movements and sends the data to connected computers.
Then the projector shoots out a round-shaped advertisement -- which can post words such
 as "SALE" -- right onto their hands.


.(AFP/File/Yoshikazu Tsuno) Yoko Ishii, a chief researcher of Japan's
 telecommunication giant NTT's Cyber Solution Laboratory shows round-shaped...


SOURCE: YAHOO NEWS



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« Last Edit: 25/07/2005 04:27:11 by neilep »
 

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Tenth planet found!
BY WILLIAM HARWOOD

A team of astronomers systematically scanning the far reaches of the
 solar system has discovered a distant, icy world that is bigger
than Pluto but so far away the head of a pin held at arm's length
would blot out the sun. The discovery, if confirmed, would force
astronomers to re-write their textbooks and give school kids a 10th
planet to memorize once a governing body sanctions the still-secret
 name proposed by a trio of discoverers.






This artist's concept shows the planet catalogued as
2003UB313 at the lonely outer fringes of our solar system. Our Sun
can be seen in the distance. The new planet, which is yet to be
formally named, is at least as big as Pluto and about three times
farther away from the Sun than Pluto. It is very cold and dark. The planet was discovered by the Samuel Oschin Telescope at the Palomar
Observatory near San Diego, Calif., on Jan. 8, 2005. Credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech


Currently known by the catalog number 2003UB313, the newly
discovered planet wheels about in an elliptical orbit tilted some 45
 degrees to the plane of the solar system's eight major planets,
taking 560 years to complete one trip around the sun.
 

At its most distant, the planet is a remote 97 times farther from
the sun than the Earth. At its closest, it passes inside the orbit
 of Pluto at a distance of some 36 astronomical units. It is
currently the most distant object known in the solar system, so far
 removed that its surface temperature is a frigid 30 degrees above absolute zero

SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM




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Dinosaur Embryos Reveal 'Ridiculous' Proportions

The oldest fossilized dinosaur embryos ever found reveal how the
creatures grew from tiny hatchlings to become such giant land beasts.



 
The embryos, including one that was ready to hatch before being
frozen in time, had no teeth. That is further evidence that at least some dinosaurs must have tended their young, scientists said today.



The embryos are 190 million years, dating from the beginning of the
Jurassic Period.



"Most dinosaur embryos are from the Cretaceous period (146 to 65
millions years ago)," said biologist Robert Reisz of the University
of Toronto at Mississauga. "The work on the embryo, its
 identification, and the fact we can see the detailed anatomy of the
earliest known dinosaur embryo is extremely exciting."


'Ridiculous' proportions


The dinosaur is called Massospondylus. It was common in what is now
South Africa.





 Combo picture of a fossilised 190-million-year-old
unhatched dinosaur embryo (L) and an artist's impression (R),
provided by South Africa's Wits University in Johannesburg and
University of Toronto at Mississauga in Canada, July 29, 2005.

Unhatched dinosaur eggs dating back 190 million years carried fully
developed embryos that would have been born clumsy and helpless,
 scientists said on Thursday. Their finding, published in Friday's
issue of the journal Science, suggests even the earliest dinosaurs
tended carefully to their young. It also raises questions about how
the giant four-legged dinosaurs called sauropods evolved.
REUTERS/Handout Email Photo Print Photo




SOURCE: REUTERS VIA YAHOO NEWS

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Offline simeonie

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Imagine if no one had ever really discovered all these dinosaurs but it was just one big conspiracy by a world government that is above any worl government. The fossils were all planted by secret agent dudes and discovered by unsuspecting archeoligists.

WOW YOU NEVER KNOW!

----------------------
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http://www.simeonie.co.uk
has forums too!
Think about it! lolz
 

Offline finchbeak

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quote:
Originally posted by simeonie

Imagine if no one had ever really discovered all these dinosaurs but it was just one big conspiracy by a world government that is above any worl government. The fossils were all planted by secret agent dudes and discovered by unsuspecting archeoligists.



Or if they were planted by God in order to trick us into committing the sin of critical thinking, as a shockingly large number of fundamentalist christians really do believe.[V]
 

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Scan Finds Mummy Between 4 and 6 Years Old
 By GARANCE BURKE, Associated Press Writer

 


SAN FRANCISCO - Researchers led by Stanford University and Silicon
Graphics Inc. have uncovered some of the mysteries surrounding a
2,000-year-old mummy without peeling back any of its bandages, or
even opening its gold-plated coffin.

 
Using a state-of-the-art CT scanner that rotated all the way around
the tiny mummified girl, San Jose-based Silicon Graphics Inc. took
60,000 images, and then created 3-D models that allowing scientists
to look at her resin-filled body cavities, her facial features, even
her baby teeth.


Among their conclusions: the girl was between 4 and 6 years old, and
must have been breast-fed until shortly before her death.
Researchers also discovered a painting of a sphinx on the mask covering her mummified face as they virtuallly peeled back layer
after layer of the resin-covered bandages.





In this photo released by Silicon Graphics, Inc., a high
resolution state-of-the-art CT scan of a 2,000 year-old girl mummy
in Stanford, Calif., taken Friday May 6, 2005, is shown. Silicon
 Graphics Inc. created 3-D models of the four to six -year-old
girl's tiny body that let scientists visualize her resin-filled body
cavities, her cause of death, even her baby teeth. (AP Photo/
courtesy of Silicon Graphics, Inc., Stanford University, and Volume
 Graphics GmbH)



SOURCE: ASSOCIATED PRESS VIA YAHOO NEWS


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Spitzer telescope finds hidden, hungry black holes

NASA NEWS RELEASE


Most of the biggest black holes in the universe have been eating
cosmic meals behind closed doors - until now.

With its sharp infrared eyes, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope (SST)
peered through walls of galactic dust to uncover what may be the
long-sought missing population of hungry black holes known as quasars






This false-color image from NASA's Spitzer Space
Telescope shows a distant galaxy (yellow) that houses a quasar, a
super-massive black hole circled by a ring, or torus, of gas and
dust. Spitzer's infrared eyes cut through the dust to find this
 hidden object, which appears to be a member of the long-sought
 population of missing quasars. The green and blue splotches are
 galaxies that do not hold quasars. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/A.
 Martinez-Sansigre (Oxford University)


Quasars are super-massive black holes that are circled by a giant
ring of gas and dust. They live at the heart of distant galaxies and
 can annually consume up to the equivalent mass of one thousand
stars. As their black holes suck in material from their dusty rings,
 the material lights up brilliantly, making quasars the brightest
objects in the universe. This bright light comes in many forms,
 including X-rays, visible and infrared light.

SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM




« Last Edit: 03/11/2005 19:29:33 by neilep »
 

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First tourist trip to the moon eyed for 2008

NEW YORK (AFP) - A US company associated with the Russian Space
Agency hopes to send tourists to circle the moon, perhaps as soon as
2008. The ticket price: a cool 100 million dollars.
 






AFP-NASA/File - Wed Aug 10, 3:57 PM ET

Image taken by cameras on board the Cassini Orbiter spacecraft and
released by NASA shows the Earth's Moon. A US company associated
with the Russian Space Agency hopes to send tourists to circle the
moon, perhaps as soon as 2008.(AFP-NASA/File)

SOURCE: ASSOCIATED PRESS VIA YAHOO NEWS


« Last Edit: 03/11/2005 19:29:16 by neilep »
 

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Atlas 5 launches Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

The first interplanetary Atlas 5 rocket launches August 12 at 7:43
a.m. EDT from Cape Canaveral's Complex 41 to propel NASA's Mars
Reconnaissance Orbiter on its seven-month voyage to the Red Planet.

 


Photo: Patrick H. Corkery & Adam Mattivi/Lockheed Martin
 


Photo: Patrick H. Corkery & Adam Mattivi/Lockheed Martin
 



Photo: Patrick H. Corkery & Adam Mattivi/Lockheed Martin



Photo: Ben Cooper/Spaceflight Now




SOURCE: SPACFLIGHTNOW.com


« Last Edit: 03/11/2005 19:29:53 by neilep »
 

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Hubble pinpoints doomed star that exploded
SPACE TELESCOPE SCIENCE INSTITUTE NEWS RELEASE


Amidst the glitter of billions of stars in the majestic spiral galaxy called the Whirlpool
 (M51), a massive star abruptly ends its life in a brilliant flash of light. NASA's Hubble
Space Telescope snapped images of the exploding star, called supernova (SN) 2005cs, 12
days after its discovery. Astronomers then compared those photos with Hubble images of the
same region before the supernova blast to pinpoint the progenitor star (the star that exploded).
 

Credit: NASA, ESA, W. Li and A. Filippenko (University
 of California, Berkeley), S. Van Dyk (Spitzer Science Center,
Caltech), S. Beckwith (STScI), and The Hubble Heritage Team
(STScI/AURA)
Download a larger image here


The color image at left shows a section of M51 taken in January 2005 with the Advanced Camera
for Surveys. The small green square marks the region where the progenitor star resides.
 The lower-right image shows a picture of SN 2005cs (the central bright object), taken
July 11, 2005, by Hubble. By comparing the lower-right image with the color image at left,
astronomers identified the supernova's progenitor star [marked by the arrow in the (pre-explosion)
upper-right image]. The star was found to be a red supergiant whose mass is about seven to 10 times
that of the Sun.

Every second, a star somewhere in the universe explodes as a supernova. Astronomers
 cannot see every supernova. Of the supernovas astronomers have seen, only six progenitor
stars have been identified. Since Hubble can easily resolve stars in nearby galaxies, such as
the Whirlpool, it allowed astronomers to track down the exploding star's identity in archival pictures.


SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM



« Last Edit: 03/11/2005 19:30:09 by neilep »
 

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Galactic survey reveals a new look for the Milky Way

UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN-MADISON NEWS RELEASE



With the help of NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, astronomers have conducted the most comprehensive
 structural analysis of our galaxy and have found tantalizing new evidence that the Milky Way is
much different from your ordinary spiral galaxy.







The Milky Way, it turns out, is no ordinary spiral
 galaxy. According to a massive new survey of stars at the heart of
the galaxy by Wisconsin astronomers the Milky Way has a definitive
bar feature -- some 27,000 light years in length -- that
distinguishes it from pedestrian spiral galaxies, as shown in this
artist's rendering. Illustration courtesy: NASA/JPL-Caltech/R. Hurt
(SSC/Caltech)



The survey using the orbiting infrared telescope provides the fine details of a long central bar
 feature that distinguishes the Milky Way from more pedestrian spiral galaxies.


"This is the best evidence ever for this long central bar in our galaxy," says Ed Churchwell,
a UW-Madison professor of astronomy and a senior author of a paper describing the new work in an
upcoming edition of Astrophysical Journal Letters, a leading astronomy journal.


Using the orbiting infrared telescope, the group of astronomers surveyed some 30 million stars
 in the plane of the galaxy in an effort to build a detailed portrait of the inner regions
of the Milky Way. The task, according to Churchwell, is like trying to describe the boundaries of
a forest from a vantage point deep within the woods: "This is hard to do from within the galaxy."

Spitzer's capabilities, however, helped the astronomers cut through obscuring clouds of interstellar
 dust to gather infrared starlight from tens of millions of stars at the center of the galaxy.
The new survey gives the most detailed picture to date of the inner regions of the Milky Way.


SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM



« Last Edit: 03/11/2005 19:30:30 by neilep »
 

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Meteor dust could affect climate, study suggests


This November 2000 NASA image shows a meteor streaking
across the sky. A space boulder that disintegrated in a fiery
descent over Antarctica last year has sparked a theory that meteor
dust may play a hidden role in our climate system.(AFP/NASA/File)


PARIS (AFP) - A space boulder that disintegrated in a fiery descent over Antarctica last year has sparked
 a theory that meteor dust may play a hidden role in our climate system.

 
The rock, estimated at 1,000 tonnes, entered the upper atmosphere above Antarctica last September 3,
 becoming a fireball spotted by the infrared eyes of US defence satellites, a study published on
 Thursday says.

Friction with air molecules stripped away the rock, transforming it into a cloud of dust that
 trailed from 56 to 18 kilometers (35 to 11 miles) in altitude. The rock was consumed in the plunge.

Closer inspection of the lingering cloud, using instruments at an Antarctic ground station, suggests
its particles were as large as 20 microns (20 millionths of a metre) -- around a thousand
times bigger than previous estimates for the size of meteor debris.

The finding is significant, because large quantities of dust are dumped in Earth's atmosphere
 from tiny pieces of asteroid rubble or debris left by passing comets, although no-one
knows for sure how much is deposited.

Previous research has already shown that particles which are larger than one micron, spewed out
by volcanoes, can play a crucial role in affecting weather.

Their relatively large size helps them to reflect the Sun's rays, thus creating a local
 cooling effect, and also provides a nucleus for attracting atmospheric moisture
 -- they encourage clouds to form.

In addition, large particles tend to linger longest in the atmosphere, sometimes
taking months to reach the planet's surface.

Space dust is mostly deposited by rubble that is consumed in the fiery descent.
 To the human eye, the event is visible as a reddish-golden streak, a meteor, that may
also leave a smoke-like trail.


SOURCE: AFP Via YAHOO NEWS
« Last Edit: 03/11/2005 19:30:55 by neilep »
 

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A Chinese dragon and a knotted galactic embrace
GEMINI OBSERVATORY NEWS RELEASE


The Gemini Observatory has released a pair of images that capture the dynamics of two very
different interactions in space. One is a cold, dark dust cloud that resembles an ethereal-looking
Chinese dragon. The other shows a distant duo of galaxies locked in a knot-like embrace that
could portend the long-term future of our own Milky Way galaxy.




NGC 6559 is part of a larger star-forming region in the southern
constellation Sagittarius. The dark structure that resembles a
Chinese dragon is caused by cool dust that absorbs background
radiation from hydrogen gas that glows in red light due to
ionization from nearby stars. This region lies less than one degree
away from the popular Lagoon Nebula (M8), and is located some 5,000
light-years away toward the center of our Milky Way galaxy. At this
distance the length of the cloud (diagonally across the image) is
about 7 light-years. Credit: Gemini Observatory
Download larger image version here


The processes shown in these views occur on a tremendous range of size scales. NGC 6559 is a
relatively small, nearby dust cloud in our Milky Way galaxy that measures about seven light-years across,
while NGC 520 features two completely entwined galaxies that stretch across 150,000 light-years.
While both images hint at how dynamic and active these objects can be, their evolution occurs on
astronomical timescales. According to Ian Robson, Director of the UK's Astronomy Technology Center,
"If we could see either of these objects as an extreme time-lapse movie made over millions of years,
 the galaxy pair would dance in a graceful orbital embrace that is likely similar to the fate between
 our Milky Way and the great Andromeda Galaxy, while the dusty cloud would probably resemble waving
 smoke from an extinguished candle."







NGC 520 has a unique shape that is the result of two galaxies
colliding with each other. One galaxy's dust lane can be seen easily
 in the foreground and a distinct tail is visible at bottom center.
 These features are a result of the gravitational interactions that
have robbed both of the galaxies of their original shapes. Some
astronomers speculate that each member of the pair was originally
similar to the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy. This collision could
 be providing us a glimpse at what might happen to our own galaxy in
 about five billion years as the Andromeda Galaxy collides with our
 Milky Way. Credit: Gemini Observatory
Download larger image version here


SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM



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« Last Edit: 02/09/2005 02:03:44 by neilep »
 

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Instant River Outside My House !





This is what happens when I finally cleared my loo blockage

When I came home earlier today this is what I found !..I had the
kids in the car with me and I of course just had to drive through it
:D:D....I didn't need to but I wanted to.....Yea !! :D....my
neighbours were standing on the opposite side and were worried that
 it was going to reach their house....when I drove through it I made
a really big splash and soaked their driveway :D:D....it was
embarassing because I had to turn around and go through it again to
get back to my house !!!:D:D:D......for some reason they
weren't in their driveway when I came back !!!


SOURCE: ME !

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« Last Edit: 10/09/2005 03:45:46 by neilep »
 

Offline neilep

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quote:
Originally posted by neilep

Instant River Outside My House !





This is what happens when I finally cleared my loo blockage

When I came home earlier today this is what I found !..I had the
kids in the car with me and I of course just had to drive through it
:D:D....I didn't need to but I wanted to.....Yea !! :D....my
neighbours were standing on the opposite side and were worried that
 it was going to reach their house....when I drove through it I made
a really big splash and soaked their driveway :D:D....it was
embarassing because I had to turn around and go through it again to
get back to my house !!!:D:D:D......for some reason they
weren't in their driveway when I came back !!!


SOURCE: ME !

Men are the same as women.... just inside out !!



CAT SAYS  " YOU WILL NOT USE ME TO SPONGE UP RIVER "


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Probe begins daring close encounter with asteroid
BY STEPHEN CLARK
SPACEFLIGHT NOW


A $100 million Japanese space explorer parked in the vicinity of an
enigmatic asteroid this week, allowing scientists to get a first
 glimpse of the mid-sized rock that will become the source of the
first samples of such an object to ever be returned to Earth.






WOOSH !!
An artist's concept shows the Hayabusa
nearing its asteroid target.
Credit: JAXA


After methodically tweaking its course - first by electrical ion
propulsion, then by conventional chemical thrusters - toward its
target over the past few months, the Hayabusa probe finally arrived
at its station keeping position some 12 miles from the asteroid
early Monday




Hmmmm !!...Looks like a cheesy Wotsit !!
 Images from
Hayabusa are revealing what the asteroid Itokawa looks like.
 Credit: JAXA


Hayabusa will deploy a tiny 1.3-pound rover known as MINERVA, which
will leap, hop, and jump across the surface in the extreme low-
gravity environment. MINERVA carries three stereo cameras for
pictures, and a suite of six thermometers to measure temperatures

Ahhhhhh !!..aint that cute !!


SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM
 



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Treadmill Arrives for Alaska's Elephant



In this photo released by the Alaska Zoo, workers at the Alaska Zoo
in Anchorage, Alaska, install what is believed to be the world's
first elephant treadmill, Monday, Sept. 12, 2005. John Seawell,
elephant house project manager, says the conveyer belt reaches
speeds of up to eight miles-per-hour. Zoo officials hope to get
Maggie, the zoo's elephant, walking on the treadmill at least two
hours a day. Seawell says he and the other trainers have not worked
out how they will persuade the elephant to usethe treadmill.

(AP Photo/Courtesy of The Alaska Zoo, John Gomes)

SOURCE: AP Via YAHOO NEWS

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Blackhole with no home




Astronomers have observed what appears to be a quasar floating all by its lonesome in space. If confirmed, it would be the first instance of a quasar – and therefore a black hole – without a surrounding galaxy.

Quasars are extremely bright light emissions from super-massive black holes, caused when gas is drawn in by a hole’s enormous gravity. The process heats the gas to extreme temperatures, creating brilliance observable from Earth.

The new discovery raises questions about whether super-massive black holes could form before galaxies and whether a halo of dark matter around a black hole could spark a quasar.

Using the Hubble Space Telescope and the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope in Chile, an international team examined 20 quasars and found that quasar HE0450-2958 did not appear to have a galaxy surrounding it.



Massive collision
Magain's team did find a distorted galaxy nearby that was rapidly forming stars. They also saw a "blob" of gas floating nearby. This gas is probably feeding the black hole, enabling it to become a quasar, they believe.

The existence of these two unusual objects near the quasar could have been associated with a massive collision 100 million years ago. The black hole could have captured the blob of gas from the neighbouring galaxy as it was slowly passing by, resulting in the ignition of the quasar. But that fails to explain what happened to the quasar’s original host galaxy.

One of Magain's favoured explanations for the appearance of the lone quasar is that it may actually be surrounded by a halo of dark matter, invisible to telescopes.

"It's a logical possibility – you could have a dark object made only of dark matter," says Abraham Loeb, an astronomer at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, US, who was not involved with the observations. "It could be that for some reason the black hole was created at the middle of such an object. But it’s very unlikely."
FULL ARTICLE
http://www.newscientistspace.com/article/dn7997-orphaned-quasar-seeks-galaxy-to-call-home.html
original article from
the Newscientistspace.com
« Last Edit: 19/09/2005 02:50:08 by ukmicky »
 

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Cassini radar shows dramatic shoreline on Titan

NASA/JPL NEWS RELEASE


Images returned during Cassini's recent flyby of Titan show
captivating evidence of what appears to be a large shoreline cutting
across the smoggy moon's southern hemisphere. Hints that this area
was once wet, or currently has liquid present, are evident




Radar image of Titan showing that the boundary of the
 bright (rough) region and the dark (smooth) region appears to be a
shoreline. Credit: NASA/JPL
Download larger image version here





This bright terrain is cut by channels that are variable in
width; they form both radial and branching networks. Such patterns are reminiscent
 of networks formed by rainfall on Earth. Credit:
 NASA/JPL
Download larger image version here


SOURCE:SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM




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Mysterious disk of blue stars found around a black hole

HUBBLE EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY INFORMATION CENTRE RELEASE

Posted: September 20, 2005

Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have
identified the source of a mysterious blue light surrounding a
supermassive black hole in our neighbouring Andromeda Galaxy (M31).
 Though the light has puzzled astronomers for more than a decade,
the new discovery makes the story even more mysterious

http://

Photo Credit for image at left: ©2002, R. Gendler, Photo by Robert
Gendler; Credits for image at upper, right: NASA, ESA and T. Lauer
(NOAO/AURA/NSF); Credits for illustration at lower, right: NASA, ESA
 and A. Feild (STScI)

Download larger image version here
 
The blue light is coming from a disk of hot, young stars. These
 stars are whipping around the black hole in much the same way as
planets in our solar system are revolving around the Sun.
Astronomers are perplexed about how the pancake-shaped disk of stars
 could form so close to a giant black hole. In such a hostile
environment, the black hole's tidal forces should tear matter apart,
making it difficult for gas and dust to collapse and form stars. The
observations, astronomers say, may provide clues to the activities
in the cores of more distant galaxies.


By finding the disk of stars, astronomers also have collected what
they say is ironclad evidence for the existence of the monster black
hole. The evidence has helped astronomers rule out all alternative
theories for the dark mass in the Andromeda Galaxy's core, which
scientists have long suspected was a black hole.



Hubble Probes Strange Blue Light


Astronomer Ivan King of the University of Washington and colleagues
first spotted the strange blue light in 1995 with the Hubble Space
Telescope. He thought the light might have come from a single,
bright blue star or perhaps from a more exotic energetic process.
Three years later, Lauer and Sandra Faber of the University of
California at Santa Cruz used Hubble again to study the blue light.
Their observations indicated that the blue light was a cluster of
blue stars.


Now, new spectroscopic observations by Hubble's Space Telescope
Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) reveal that the blue light consists of
more than 400 stars that formed in a burst of activity about 200
million years ago. The stars are tightly packed in a disk that is
only a light-year across. The disk is nested inside an elliptical
ring of older, cooler, redder stars, which was seen in previous
Hubble observations.


SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM

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Washington Plans Exhibit for Baby Panda



The 10-week-old male giant panda cub at the Smithsonian's National
 Zoo sits in a container after he received his sixth health exam at
 the Washington Zoo, September 19, 2005. The cub, born on July 9,
 now weighs 9.57 pounds (4.3 kg) and is 22.51 inches long. The cub
 and his parents live at the zoo's Giant Panda Habitat

PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON - The National Zoo hopes to put its giant panda cub on
exhibit sometime in November.

 
The Panda House was closed shortly before first-time mother Mei
Xiang gave birth to the male cub on July 9. The public can still see
her mate, Tian Tian, in his yard, and Mei Xiang sometimes ventures
outside as well.


Zoo officials will set a date for reopening the exhibit after
keepers determine how Mei Xiang adjusts to the additional noise and
traffic, zoo spokeswoman Peper Long said in a story in Thursday's
 Washington Post.


Zoo officials plan to deal with the expected crush of visitors by
giving out timed admission tickets.


The cub will be named before it meets the public. Visitors to the
zoo's Web site have cast about 143,000 votes in a naming contest
that ends Sept. 30. Officials will announce the winning name Oct. 17.


The giant panda cub is the first at the zoo to survive more than a
few days. He now weighs about 10 pounds, measures nearly two feet
from head to tail and is beginning to crawl in circles but hasn't
started to walk.

SOURCE: REUTERS VIA YAHOO NEWS



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Scientists find mature galaxy eight times larger than Milky Way


Composite of visible-light (Hubble) and infraed (Spitzer)
images of the distant galaxy HUDF-JD2 in the Hubble Deep Ultra Field.
(AFP/NASA/ESA)



WASHINGTON (AFP) - US astronomers said they had found a vast, mature
 galaxy using     NASA's Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes.

They were particularly impressed by the fact stars seemed to have
been formed in the galaxy.

"This is truly a significant object," says Richard Ellis, of the
California Institute of Technology and a member of the discovery
team.


"Although we are looking back to when the universe was only six
percent of its present age, this galaxy has already built up a mass
 in stars eight times that of the Milky Way."

He said the fact such a galaxy had already completed its star
formation "implies a yet earlier period of intense activity."


"It's like crossing the ocean and meeting a lone seagull, a
forerunner of land ahead. There is now every reason to search beyond
 this object for the cosmic dawn when the first such systems
switched on," he said.

Though astronomers generally believe most galaxies were built up by
 mergers of smaller galaxies, the new discovery suggests that at
least a few galaxies formed quickly and wholly long ago. For such a
 large galaxy, this would have been a vastly explosive star birth
event.

SOURCE: AFP via YAHOO NEWS.




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Amazing pictures of Saturn's spongy moon Hyperion
CASSINI PHOTO RELEASE





Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Download larger image version here


This stunning false-color view of Saturn's moon Hyperion reveals
crisp details across the strange, tumbling moon's surface.
Differences in color could represent differences in the composition
of surface materials. The view was obtained during Cassini's close
flyby on Sept. 26, 2005.


Hyperion has a notably reddish tint when viewed in natural color.
 The red color was toned down in this false-color view, and the
other hues were enhanced, in order to make more subtle color
variations across Hyperion's surface more apparent.


Images taken using infrared, green and ultraviolet spectral filters
were combined to create this view. The images were taken with the
Cassini spacecraft's narrow-angle camera at a distance of
approximately 62,000 kilometers (38,500 miles) from Hyperion and at
a Sun-Hyperion-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 52 degrees. The image
scale is 362 meters (1,200 feet) per pixel.





Well big piccy
here

This high-resolution Cassini mosaic shows that Hyperion truly has a
surface different from any other in the Saturn system.




The mosaic is composed of five clear filter images taken during
Cassini's close flyby of Hyperion on Sept. 26, 2005. The spacecraft
 passed approximately 500 kilometers (310 miles) above the moon's
surface. Hyperion is 266 kilometers (165 miles) in diameter.

Scientists are extremely curious to learn what the dark material is
that fills many craters on this oddball moon. Features within the
dark terrain, including a 200-meter-wide (650-foot) impact crater
surrounded by rays to the right of center and numerous bright-rimmed
craters, indicate that the dark material may be only tens of meters
(hundreds of feet) thick with brighter material beneath.


SOURCE: SPACEFLIGHTNOW.COM






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New optics produce ultrasharp images of sunspot

NATIONAL SOLAR OBSERVATORY NEWS RELEASE
Posted: October 5, 2005

Advanced technologies now available at the National Science
Foundation's Dunn Solar Telescope at Sunspot, New Mexico, are
revealing striking details inside sunspots and hint at features
remaining to be discovered in solar activity.
 




High-resolution image of sunspot produced with the new
camera attached to the Dunn's adaptive optics system. Credit:
Friedrich Woeger, KIS, and Chris Berst and Mark Komsa, NSO/AURA/NSF


 
 
This image, spanning an area more than three times wider than Earth,
was made possible by the Dunn's recently completed AO76 advanced
adaptive optics image correction system and a new high-resolution
CCD camera.


The Dunn is the nation's premier high-resolution solar telescope.
The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy operates
the Dunn as part of the National Solar Observatory under a
cooperative agreement with the NSF.
 

This ultrasharp image of sunspot AR 10805 shows several objects of
current scientific interest. G-band bright points, which indicate
 the presence of small-scale magnetic flux tubes, are seen near the
sunspot and between several granules (columns of hot gas circulating
upward).


source:spaceflightnow.com




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