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Mars Exploration Family Portrait February 5, 2013

Posted by John Tintle (MtO deadbait) in Planets.
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File:Mars-exploration-family-portrait-version3.jpg

Additional Images:

Size of this preview: 800 × 578 pixels. Other resolutions: 320 × 231 pixels | 640 × 462 pixels | 1,024 × 739 pixels | 1,280 × 924 pixels. Full resolution ‎(4,000 × 2,888 pixels, file size: 3.13 MB, MIME type: image/jpeg)

Credit:

Jason Davis, http://www.astrosaur.us

Barnstorming Linne Crater February 5, 2013

Posted by John Tintle (MtO deadbait) in Planets.
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Description:

This flyover was generated from 3D model of Linne Crater with the image draped on top. The 3D model uses the DTM derived from LROC NAC stereo images.

Credit:

NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University

Dragon Tail Filament Erupts February 1, 2013

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Description:

A long and complex strand of plasma hanging above the Sun’s surface erupted (Jan. 31, 2013) as a long loop that stretched and broke apart as it burst into space. Much of the material actually fell back into Sun unable to break free of the Sun’s gravity. The images from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) were taken in a wavelength of extreme ultraviolet light (304 Angstroms). The movie covers about six hours of activity. We called it a ‘dragon tail filament’ because before it erupted, it did resemble one. Plasma is a hot gas composed of electrically charged hydrogen and helium.
Another version shown below combines the 304 Angstrom wavelength with the 193 Angstrom, which offers better detail of the motions of the filament before it breaks away.

Credit:

Solar Dynamics Observatory, NASA, the AIA, EVE, and HMI science teams

 

Roger! We Have a Liftoff! January 28, 2013

Posted by John Tintle (MtO deadbait) in Planets.
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Description:

A solar prominence arched up and then erupted out from near the Sun’s surface (Jan. 23, 2013). SDO observed the event, also associated with a coronal mass ejection, in extreme ultraviolet light as it evolved over seven hours. The strand of solar plasma appeared to perform a somersault as it expanded and disappeared into space. The disruption to the magnetic fields in the area generated the coiling and spreading wave-like action below the site of the event. Solar prominences are unstable clouds of cooler gases suspended above the Sun’s surface by magnetic forces

Credit:

Solar Dynamics Observatory, NASA, the AIA, EVE, and HMI science teams

CosmoQuest: Taking Citizen Science to the Next Level January 27, 2012

Posted by John Tintle (MtO deadbait) in Planets, Space Fotos.
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This is a great step forward for science. Here is the Google Plus post where I found out about this great initiative:

 –  5:27 PM  –  Public

Citizen Science junkies: Check out this Universe Today article about a new citizen science portal, led by +Pamela Gay. Also involved are +Philip Plait ( Bad Astronomy Blog ) and +Fraser Cain ( Universe Today )

Aside from the focus on citizen science, one thing that hooked me was something I think +Pamela Gay said in a Google+ hangout yesterday. “Open science, open source”.

I’m pretty stoked about CosmoQuest and can’t wait to start taking part in the project, as it combines two things I’m very passionate about – citizen science and open-source software! #FunFriday

From the CosmoQuest website:

Our goal is to create a community of people bent on together advancing our understanding of the universe; a community of people who are participating in doing science, who can explain why what they do matters, and what questions they are helping to answer. We want to create a community, and here is where we invite all of you to be a part of what we’re doing.

There are lots of ways to get involved: You can contribute to science, take a class, join a conversation, or just help us spread the word by sharing about us on social media sites.

Community.png

Like every community, we are constantly changing to reflect our members. This website will constantly be growing and adding new features. Overtime, we’re going to bring together all the components of a research learning environment (aka grad school), from content in the form of classes, resources, and a blog, to research in the form of citizen science, to social engagement through a forum, social media, and real world activities.

LRO data is used in Moon Mappers

The science you have the chance to help with is being developed by scientists all over the world. We are partnering directly with NASA missions to develop citizen science projects that help expand what science they can accomplish. We’re working with Mercury MESSENGER, the Dawn Mission, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, New Horizons, and the Space Telescope Science Institute to build a series of projects that map the surfaces of rocky worlds and explore the atmospheres of planets and small bodies the solar system over.

You don’t have to be a genius with a PhD to do science. We provide tutorials with every project that should make it possible for anyone to contribute. We also offer a variety of educational programs so that you can learn as much as you want about the science you’re aiding. We also want teachers and amateurs doing EPO to receive the professional development they need to use CosmoQuest to teach astronomy to students and the public. To help us reach these goals, we’re partnering with the Galileo Teacher Training Program and Astronomers without Borders – one of our goals is to reach out to amateurs and get them the materials and training needed to use CosmoQuest in their outreach.

Take us with you

CosmoQuest is a place to do, to learn, and to collaborate.

Where would you like to explore today?

Join us in the forums, and share your ideas for our future.

Link: http://cosmoquest.org

NASA Day of Remembrance Wreath Laying Ceremony January 26, 2012

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NASA Day of Remembrance Wreath Laying Ceremony

Description:

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, NASA personnel, and others, participate in a wreath laying ceremony as part of NASA’s Day of Remembrance, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2012, at Arlington National Cemetery. Wreathes were laid in memory of those men and women who lost their lives in the quest for space exploration.

Photo Credit:

NASA/Bill Ingalls

First Fire Images from VIIRS January 25, 2012

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First Fire Images from VIIRS
Southern California acquired January 19, 2012

Description:

Like a baby learning to walk, the Visible Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) is slowly adjusting to its new space environment and is gradually taking steps toward full operations.

VIIRS was launched on October 28, 2011, on the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System Preparatory Project (NPP) satellite and produced its first image on November 21. By January 19, 2012, the sensor acquired its first measurements of fires. These measurements and others from VIIRS are still preliminary, and scientists and engineers will continue testing and calibrating the measurements over the coming weeks before data are released for public use.

It took longer to acquire the first VIIRS fire measurements because the sensor had to cool enough to accurately observe thermal infrared energy. These images show a few of the fires detected on January 19. The top image shows a smoky fire burning in the mountains east of San Diego, California.

The images indicate that the VIIRS sensor is in good health and that it appears to be detecting fires accurately. In both images, the fire detections line up with plumes of smoke. In the South Sudan image, the fires are burning in areas where black, charred ground points to recent fire activity. Flying over the same areas at about the same time, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite also detected fires in both California and South Sudan.

It is vital that VIIRS makes these measurements because vegetation fires are one of the most important elements of land cover change and nutrient recycling in the Earth system. Fires play a major role in the formation and maintenance of numerous ecosystems. Over the last millennia, naturally occurring fires were gradually offset by those set by humans for hunting, land clearing and maintenance, and fuel production (charcoal).

With the beginning of daily polar orbiting satellite data—which started in the early 1980s—and the routine monitoring of fire activity, it soon became clear that humans were quickly changing the natural fire regimes of large areas of the world. The fires have cascading effects on atmospheric composition (due to smoke) and alteration of climate conditions. Due to the widespread occurrence of fires, Earth satellites have become the primary resource for the monitoring of biomass burning and for timely information for fire managers and the science community.

NOTE: On January 25, the NPP satellite was renamed the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership, in honor of Verner E. Suomi, “the father of satellite meteorology.”

Credit:

Ivan Csiszar, NOAA/NESDIS Center for Satellite Applications and Research, and Wilfrid Schroeder, University of Maryland Earth System Science Interdisciplinary Center. Caption by Holli Riebeek, Ivan Csiszar, and Wilfrid Schroeder.

Instrument:

Suomi NPP – VIIRS

The Eye of Issyk Kul January 25, 2012

Posted by John Tintle (MtO deadbait) in Planets, Space Fotos.
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Issyk Kul

Description:

Kyrgyzstan is wedged in the mountainous wrinkles between Kazakhstan and China, created long ago when the land mass we now call India, propelled by plate tectonics, slammed into the Asian plate. Living there are a proud people with a rich history, surrounded by natural, high-altitude beauty.

Out of numerous Kyrgyz lakes, one in particular stands out—Lake Issyk Kul. When seen from orbit, Issyk Kul appears to be a giant eye, looking at us looking down at it. The snow-covered mountains become aged eyebrows. The lake itself, having a fairly high salt concentration, does not typically freeze over, thus reflecting wintertime light in such a way as to form a “pupil” that seems to track us as we orbit overhead.

Credit:

NASA,Don Pettit

PIA15283: Dunes in Noachis Terra Region of Mars January 25, 2012

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http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/jpegMod/PIA15283_modest.jpg
Description:

This enhanced-color image shows sand dunes trapped in an impact crater in Noachis Terra, Mars. Dunes and sand ripples of various shapes and sizes display the natural beauty created by physical processes. The area covered in the image is about six-tenths of a mile (1 kilometer) across.

Sand dunes are among the most widespread wind-formed features on Mars. Their distribution and shapes are affected by changes in wind direction and wind strength. Patterns of dune erosion and deposition provide insight into the sedimentary history of the surrounding terrain.

The image is one product from an observation by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera taken on Nov. 29, 2011, at 42 degrees south latitude, 42 degrees east longitude. Other image products from the same observation are at http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_025042_1375.

HiRISE is one of six instruments on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The University of Arizona, Tucson, operates the orbiter’s HiRISE camera, which was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington.

Image Credit:

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

Image Addition Date:

2012-01-25

PIA13954: NASA Spacecraft Images Some of Earth’s Newest “Real Estate” January 24, 2012

Posted by John Tintle (MtO deadbait) in Planets, Space Fotos.
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In December, 2011, NASA's Terra spacecraft captured this image of a new volcanic island forming in the Red Sea. This region is part of the Red Sea Rift where the African and Arabian tectonic plates are pulling apart.
Description:

In December 2011, a new volcanic island began forming in the Red Sea, accompanied by lava fountains reaching up to 30 meters (95 feet) tall. By Jan. 14, 2012, when the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument on NASA’s Terra spacecraft captured this image (left), the island clearly showed a central crater, similar to the surrounding islands, and was well above the wave height. The right image is from Google Earth and shows the area before the creation of this new island. This region is part of the Red Sea Rift where the African and Arabian tectonic plates are pulling apart. The image covers an area of 5.6 by 9.3 kilometers (3.5 by 5.8 miles), and is located at 15.1 degrees north latitude, 42.1 degrees east longitude.

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.

The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

The U.S. science team is located at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C.

More information about ASTER is available at http://asterweb.jpl.nasa.gov/.

Image Credit:

NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

Image Addition Date:

2012-01-20

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