Monday, January 31, 2022

Hubble Revisits a Galactic Oddball | NASA/ESA

Hubble Revisits a Galactic Oddball | NASA/ESA

The dwarf galaxy NGC 1705 is featured in this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. This diminutive galaxy lies in the southern constellation Pictor, and is approximately 17 million light-years from Earth. NGC 1705 is a cosmic oddball—it is small, irregularly shaped, and has recently undergone a spate of star formation known as a starburst. 

Despite these eccentricities, NGC 1705 and other dwarf irregular galaxies like it can provide valuable insights into the overall evolution of galaxies. Dwarf irregular galaxies tend to contain few elements other than hydrogen or helium, and are considered to be similar to the earliest galaxies that populated the Universe.

The data shown in this image come from a series of observations designed to unveil the interplay between stars, star clusters, and ionised gas in nearby star-forming galaxies. By observing a specific wavelength of light known as H-alpha with Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3, astronomers aimed to discover thousands of emission nebulae — regions created when hot, young stars bathe the clouds of gas surrounding them in ultraviolet light, causing them to glow.

This is not the first time that NGC 1705 has been imaged by Hubble—astronomers peered into the heart of the galaxy in 1999 using Hubble’s workhorse camera at the time, the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2. This instrument was replaced with the Wide Field Camera 3 during the fifth and final Space Shuttle mission to Hubble in 2009, and the newer instrument has provided a richer and far more detailed portrait of NGC 1705 than the 1999 observation.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

European Space Agency (ESA)

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, R. Chandar5

Release Date: January 31, 2022

#NASA #Hubble #Astronomy #Space #Science #Galaxy #Galaxies #NGC1705 #Pictor #Cosmos #Universe #Telescope #ESA #Goddard #GSFC #STScI #STEM #Education

The Great Carina Nebula | APoD

The Great Carina Nebula | APoD

The Great Carina Nebula, featuring the Gabriela Mistral Nebula, as well as other nebulae and star clusters.

The Great Carina Nebula is home to strange stars and iconic nebulas. Named for its home constellation, the huge star-forming region is larger and brighter than the Great Orion Nebula but less well known because it is so far south—and because so much of humanity lives farther north. The featured image shows in great detail the northern-most part of the Carina Nebula. Visible nebulas include the semi-circular filaments surrounding the active star Wolf-Rayet 23 (WR23) on the far left. Just left of center is the Gabriela Mistral Nebula consisting of an emission nebula of glowing gas (IC 2599) surrounding the small open cluster of stars (NGC 3324). Above the image center is the larger star cluster NGC 3293, while to its right is the relatively faint emission nebula designated Loden 153. The most famous occupant of the Carina Nebula, however, is not shown. Off the image to the lower right is the bright, erratic, and doomed star star known as Eta Carinae—a star once one of the brightest stars in the sky and now predicted to explode in a supernova sometime in the next few million years.

Carina Nebula North

Image Credit & Copyright: Roberto Colombari (Brazil)/APoD

Roberto Colombari's Facebook Page:

Astronomy Picture of the Day (APoD):

Release Date: January 31, 2022

#NASA #Space #Astronomy #Science #Carina #Nebula #Astrophotographer #Brasil #Brazil #Cosmos #Universe #STEM #Education #APoD

Chinese Astronauts Organize Traditional Spring Festival Celebration in Space

Chinese Astronauts Organize Traditional Spring Festival Celebration in Space

Jan. 31, 2022: Chinese astronauts, or taikonauts, are about to celebrate their first Spring Festival in China's space station, 400 kilometers up above Earth, as they are halfway through their six-month mission. It seems the Shenzhou-13 crew decided to keep Chinese festive traditions alive even in space and is ready to enjoy the night. A video released by China Media Group (CMG) shows taikonauts have already decorated the inside of the space station with balloons and traditional red paper squares. The Chinese character "福" (meaning good fortune) is written on the paper squares, meaning happiness has arrived.

Zhai Zhigang, one of the crew members, wrote antithetical couplets on red paper scrolls with a brush pen and showed his calligraphy via camera to the ground, sending new year's blessing to all: "Happy new year to everyone, with good health and best luck in the Year of the Tiger!" Dumplings are one of the iconic foods for the special night when Chinese people embrace a new year according to the lunar calendar and say goodbye to the past year; the taikonauts will have them for dinner. The dumplings with three different kinds of stuffing are on their menu for dinner.

They will also stick to the tradition as most Chinese people do at night – watching Spring Festival Gala – the most-watched TV show. They will also participate in the show via video to send their greetings to all the viewers.

Credit: China Global Television Network (CGTN)/China Media Group (CMG)

Release Date: January 31, 2022

#Earth #Space #China #中国 #中华人民共和国 #CNSA #ChineseNewYear #Holiday #Taikonaut #WangYaping #ZhaiZhigang #YeGuangfu #Tiangong #SpaceStation #Culture #Science #Technology #International #Video

Sunday, January 30, 2022

Tonight’s Sky: February 2022

Tonight’s Sky: February 2022

In February, the Winter Triangle is your guide to the night sky: The northern hemisphere is treated to views of the stars Procyon, Sirius, and Betelgeuse. Keep watching for the awe-inspiring space-based views of the Orion Nebula, which is sculpted by the stellar winds of central bright stars.

About this Series

“Tonight’s Sky” is a monthly video of constellations you can observe in the night sky. The series is produced by the Space Telescope Science Institute, home of science operations for the Hubble Space Telescope, in partnership with NASA’s Universe of Learning. This is a recurring show, and you can find more episodes—and other astronomy videos—at

This video is based on work supported by NASA under award numbers NNX16AC65A to the Space Telescope Science Institute, working in partnership with Caltech/IPAC, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, and Sonoma State University. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Credit: Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI)

Duration: 5 minutes, 32 seconds

Release Date: January 25, 2022

#NASA #Astronomy #Hubble #Space #Science #Earth #Stars #Procyon #Sirius #Betelgeuse #Nebula #Orion #Galaxy #MilkyWay #Planets #SolarSystem #Skywatching #STEM #Education #UnitedStates #Canada #Mexico #NorthernHemisphere #Video

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Waxing Crescent Moon Above Pacific Ocean | International Space Station

Waxing Crescent Moon Above Pacific Ocean | International Space Station

A waxing crescent Moon during is pictured from the International Space Station during an orbital sunset as it flew 268 miles above the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand.

The International Space Station (ISS) Program’s greatest accomplishment is as much a human achievement as it is a technological one—how best to plan, coordinate, and monitor the varied activities of the Program’s many organizations.

An international partnership of space agencies provides and operates the elements of the ISS. The principals are the space agencies of the United States, Russia, Europe, Japan, and Canada. The ISS has been the most politically complex space exploration program ever undertaken.

Credit: NASA/Johnson Space Center

Image Date: Dec. 6, 2021 

#NASA #Space #ISS #Earth #NewZealand #Pacific #Ocean #Moon #Waning #Crescent #JSC #Houston #Texas #UnitedStates #Expedition66 #International #STEM #Education

Waning Gibbous Moon Above Earth's Horizon | International Space Station

Waning Gibbous Moon Above Earth's Horizon | International Space Station

The waning gibbous Moon is pictured above the Earth's horizon as the International Space Station orbited 272 miles above the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of southern Argentina.

The International Space Station (ISS) Program’s greatest accomplishment is as much a human achievement as it is a technological one—how best to plan, coordinate, and monitor the varied activities of the Program’s many organizations.

An international partnership of space agencies provides and operates the elements of the ISS. The principals are the space agencies of the United States, Russia, Europe, Japan, and Canada. The ISS has been the most politically complex space exploration program ever undertaken.

Credit: NASA/Johnson Space Center

Image Date: Jan. 21, 2022

#NASA #Space #ISS #Earth #Argentina #Moon #Waning #Gibbous #JSC #Houston #Texas #UnitedStates #Expedition66 #International #STEM #Education

Friday, January 28, 2022

Saturn and Tethys | NASA Cassini Mission

Saturn and Tethys | NASA Cassini Mission

Italian mathematician, astronomer and engineer, Giovanni Cassini, discovered Tethys on March 21, 1684.


Tethys is Saturn's fifth largest moon. Its irregular shape is 331 miles (533 kilometers) in mean radius, with dimensions 669 x 657 x 654 miles (1076.8 x 1057.4 x 1052.6 kilometers). This cold, airless and heavily scarred body is very similar to sister moons Dione and Rhea except that Tethys is not as heavily cratered as the other two. This may be because its proximity to Saturn causes more tidal warming, and that warming kept Tethys partially molten longer, erasing or dulling more of the early terrain.

Tethys' density is 0.97 times that of liquid water, which suggests that Tethys is composed almost entirely of water ice plus a small amount of rock.

Tethys has a high reflectivity (or visual albedo) of 1.229 in the visual range, again suggesting a composition largely of water ice, which would behave like rock in the Tethyan average temperature of -305 degrees Fahrenheit (-187 degrees Celsius). Many of the crater floors on Tethys are bright, which also suggests an abundance of water ice. Also contributing to the high reflectivity is that Tethys is bombarded by Saturn E-ring water-ice particles generated by geysers on Enceladus.

Tethys appeared as a tiny dot to astronomers until the Voyager (1 and 2) encounters in 1980 and 1981. The Voyager images showed a major impact crater and a great chasm. The Cassini spacecraft has added details including a great variety of colors at small scales suggesting a variety of materials not seen elsewhere.

For more than a decade, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft shared the wonders of Saturn and its family of icy moons—taking us to astounding worlds where methane rivers run to a methane sea and where jets of ice and gas are blasting material into space from a liquid water ocean that might harbor the ingredients for life.

Cassini revealed in great detail the true wonders of Saturn, a giant world ruled by raging storms and delicate harmonies of gravity.

Cassini carried a passenger to the Saturn system, the European Huygens probe—the first human-made object to land on a world in the distant outer solar system.

After 20 years in space — 13 of those years exploring Saturn — Cassini exhausted its fuel supply. And so, to protect moons of Saturn that could have conditions suitable for life, Cassini was sent on a daring final mission that would seal its fate. After a series of nearly two dozen nail-biting dives between the planet and its icy rings, Cassini plunged into Saturn’s atmosphere on Sept. 15, 2017, returning science data to the very end.

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute (SSI)/CICLOPS/Kevin M. Gill

Image Date: August 19, 2012

Release Date: January 3, 2022

#NASA #Astronomy #Science #Space #Saturn #Planet #Rings #Shadows #Moon #Tethys #SolarSystem #Exploration #Cassini #Spacecraft #JPL #California #SSI #UnitedStates #ESA #History #STEM #Education

The Webb Space Telescope Reaches Its New Home | This Week @NASA

The Webb Space Telescope Reaches Its New Home | This Week @NASA 

Jan. 28, 2022: The Webb Space Telescope reaches its new home, remembering our fallen heroes, and testing a VIPER in the sand … a few of the stories to tell you about – This Week at NASA!

Producer: Andre Valentine

Editor: Sonnet Apple

Music: Universal Production Music

Credit: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Duration: 3 minutes, 52 seconds

Release Date: January 28, 2022

#NASA #JWST #Hubble #Astronomy #Space #Science #Galaxy #Galaxies #Cosmos #Universe #Telescope #ESA #CSA #Goddard #GSFC #STScI #STEM #Education #Video

NASA's Space to Ground: Next Day Delivery | Week of Jan. 28, 2022

NASA's Space to Ground: Next Day Delivery | Week of Jan. 28, 2022 

Jan. 28, 2022: NASA's Space to Ground is your weekly update on what's happening aboard the International Space Station. Anton Shkaplerov of Roscosmos (Russia) is the current commander of International Space Station Expedition 66.

Expedition 66 Crew:

Commander: Anton Shkaplerov of Roscosmos (Russia)

Roscosmos (Russia) Flight Engineer Pyotr Dubrov 

European Space Agency (ESA) Flight Engineer Matthias Maurer (DLR/German Aerospace Center)

NASA (U.S.) Flight Engineers: Thomas Marshburn, Raja Chari, Kayla Barron, and Mark Vande Hei.

The International Space Station (ISS) Program’s greatest accomplishment is as much a human achievement as it is a technological one—how best to plan, coordinate, and monitor the varied activities of the Program’s many organizations.

An international partnership of space agencies provides and operates the elements of the ISS. The principals are the space agencies of the United States, Russia, Europe, Japan, and Canada. The ISS has been the most politically complex space exploration program ever undertaken.

Learn more about the important research being operated on Station: 

For more information about STEM on Station:

STEM is an acronym for the fields of science, technology, engineering and math. 

Credit: NASA/Johnson Space Center (JSC)

Duration: 2 minutes, 47 seconds

Release Date: January 28, 2022

#NASA #Space #ISS #Roscosmos #Cosmonauts #Astronauts #Роскосмос #Russia #Россия #ESA #DLR #Germany #Deutschland #JSC #Houston #Texas #UnitedStates #Expedition66 #International #STEM #Education #Video

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Russian Spacewalkers Dubrov & Shkaplerov | International Space Station

Russian Spacewalkers Dubrov & Shkaplerov | International Space Station

Jan. 19, 2022: Cosmonauts Pyotr Dubrov (attached to the bottom left portion of the Prichal docking module) and Anton Shkaplerov (attached to the top right of Prichal) work to configure and activate Russia's newest module with the Russian segment of the International Space Station during a seven-hour and 11-minute spacewalk. NASA Flight Engineer Vande Hei, who assisted the spacewalkers on Thursday, also joined the pair on Friday helping remove U.S. lights and cameras installed on the Orlan spacesuits.

Anton Shkaplerov of Roscosmos is the current commander of International Space Station Expedition 66.

The International Space Station (ISS) Program’s greatest accomplishment is as much a human achievement as it is a technological one—how best to plan, coordinate, and monitor the varied activities of the Program’s many organizations.

An international partnership of space agencies provides and operates the elements of the ISS. The principals are the space agencies of the United States, Russia, Europe, Japan, and Canada. The ISS has been the most politically complex space exploration program ever undertaken.

Credit: NASA/Johnson Space Center

Image Date: January 19, 2022 

#NASA #Space #ISS #Roscosmos #Cosmonauts #EVA #Spacewalk #AntonShkaplerov #PyotrDubrov #Роскосмос #Russia #Россия #JSC #Houston #Texas #UnitedStates #Expedition66 #International #STEM #Education

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

NASA Greenland Mission Completes Six Years of Mapping Unknown Terrain

NASA Greenland Mission Completes Six Years of Mapping Unknown Terrain

To learn how ocean water is melting glaciers, NASA’s Oceans Melting Greenland (OMG) mission extensively surveyed the coastline of the world’s largest island.

The most important thing to remember about NASA’s Oceans Melting Greenland mission, which ended Dec. 31, 2021, may be its name: OMG proved that ocean water is melting Greenland’s glaciers at least as much as warm air is melting them from above. Because ice loss from Greenland’s ice sheet currently contributes more to the global rise of the oceans than any other single source, this finding has revolutionized scientists’ understanding of the pace of sea level rise in the coming decades.

These new, unique measurements have clarified the likely progress of future ice loss in a place where glaciers are melting six or seven times faster today than they were only 25 years ago. If all of Greenland’s ice sheet were to melt, global sea levels would rise by about 24 feet (7.4 meters).

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg in the story of this small plane- and boat-based mission. In six years of operations, OMG made the first scientific measurements along many miles of the most remote coastline in the Northern Hemisphere. The mission performed the most complete survey of the seafloor around Greenland’s coastline, including dozens of previously uncharted fjords (cliff-lined inlets clogged with icebergs from disintegrating glaciers), and measured how the ocean temperature changed from place to place, year to year, and top to bottom. To get this unique dataset, mission planes logged enough air miles around and over Greenland to circle the globe more than 13 times.


More than 220 glaciers flow from Greenland into the ocean. Before OMG, scientists figured the ocean water swirling around and under these glaciers had to be contributing to their ice loss. But how much?

Satellite observations of sea surface temperature weren’t much help in answering that question. Around Greenland, the top layer of the ocean is extremely cold and not very salty, containing a lot of water from the Arctic, the freshest of oceans. A shallow glacier that only touches this layer melts slowly. But hundreds of feet below, the ocean is warmer and saltier. A deep-seated glacier is eaten away by the warmer water, losing ice four or five times as fast as a shallow one.

The only way to find out any glacier’s risk is to go to Greenland and measure the glacier and the seafloor and water in front of it. Scientists had been studying individual glaciers that way for years, but Josh Willis, principal investigator of OMG at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, wanted to get the complete picture: to measure all 220-plus glaciers for five years – the length of time available to missions funded by NASA’s Earth Ventures airborne research program.

“When we started to design OMG, we asked ourselves, ‘Can we do an experiment in five years that will tell us about the next 50?’” Willis said. Results have proved that they could. NASA even allowed them a sixth year of fieldwork to observe unexpected, rapid swings in water temperatures off Greenland’s west coast.


The mission’s first job was to map the seafloor around the island to see where deep, warm water can reach glaciers. A contractor completed most of the mapping using a research boat, and OMG Deputy Principal Investigator Eric Rignot of JPL and the University of California, Irvine led smaller surveys in following years to fill in missing sections.

To measure the ocean temperature and salinity down to the seafloor, Willis ran a summer airborne campaign that dropped about 250 probes each year into the ocean at strategic locations around the entire coastline. Six summers of flying over the remote Arctic may sound more like an adventure than a research project, but, Willis said, “It’s only an adventure in retrospect. While you’re in it, you have your head down and you’re working as hard as you can.” For the scientists, the data streaming into their computer from the probes was excitement enough.

The detailed maps and temperature data collected by OMG show that two to four times as many glaciers sit in water that is several degrees warmer than previously thought and, thus, are at higher risk than anyone knew. Researchers understood that about a third of Greenland’s glaciers account for half of its ice loss; OMG found that all of these culprits reach down into warm water. Climate models that don’t account for the warm water’s effects underestimate glacial ice loss by at least a factor of two – in other words, missing half the sea level rise from this source.


OMG’s groundbreaking data has influenced many kinds of Arctic studies besides oceanography. For example, Kristin Laidre of the University of Washington is an internationally known expert on narwhals, Arctic whales with a tusk-like protruding tooth. She and Ian Fenty, an OMG co-principal investigator at JPL, developed a project that benefits both marine biologists and oceanographers: a research cruise to place OMG probes and acoustic sounders that record the presence of narwhals in front of West Greenland glaciers.

The probe data provides a close-up view of how much ocean conditions can vary in a small area, and Laidre hopes that, in combination with the sounder data, it will help explain why certain glacier fronts are especially attractive to narwhals. “We biologists can get a better understanding of animals and populations by working with physical scientists,” she said, referring to the OMG team. “To have a group of scientists who want to collaborate is really great.”


The end of the mission doesn’t mean the end of all new data from the Greenland ocean. In 2021, the team dropped a few longer-lived probes in areas where changes in ocean temperatures or circulation are not fully understood. These probes “winter over” below the surface, continuing to bob up and down through the water to collect data that will be read remotely when the ice melts next summer.

And scientists in many fields will continue to draw on OMG’s observations for their research. To date, about half of peer-reviewed journal articles using the data are written by researchers outside the mission’s science team – an unusually large portion. “We’re seeing a lot more science than we originally planned,” Willis said. “Those papers aren’t going to stop.”

For more information on the mission, visit

JPL is a research and development lab federally funded by NASA and managed by Caltech.

Video Credit: Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)

Duration: 6 minutes

Release Date: January 26, 2022

#NASA #Earth #Science #Ocean #Glaciers #Greenland #EarthObservation #Planet #ClimateChange #Climate #Environment #Denmark #Danmark #STEM #Education #Video

Martian Volcano: Making a splash in a lava sea | ESA Mars Express

Martian Volcano: Making a splash in a lava sea | ESA Mars Express

     Jovis Tholus volcano and surrounds

January 26, 2022: Volcanoes, impact craters, tectonic faults, river channels and a lava sea: a vast amount of information is captured in a relatively small area in this geologically rich new image from the European Space Agency’s Mars Express. At first glance, two contrasting circular features jump out of this scene: a volcano that rises gently above the surface with a collapsed caldera system, and an impact crater that digs down below. Both features have different stories to tell. 

Lying in the shadows of the Solar System’s largest volcano, Olympus Mons, the much smaller Jovis Tholus shield volcano bears its own evidence of a long eruptive history. Its complex caldera system comprises at least five craters. The largest is about 28 km wide, and sits off centre, as clearly seen in the plan view images. The calderas step down towards the southwest where the youngest eventually meets with the surrounding sea of even younger lava flows. The lavas create a shoreline around the flanks, obscuring the original relief of the volcano, which now only sits about 1 km above the surrounding plains.  

On closer look, individual lava flows can be found all over the plains. These lava flows have also washed over fault lines, filling in the sets of parallel graben that dominate the north and north east parts of the scene in particular. Graben are sunken valleys created when the planet’s crust stretches apart, such as under the pressure of volcanic and tectonic stresses in this region.

A steep scarp of one of these graben cuts right into the eastern flank of Jovis Tholus. Some portions of this graben can be traced for several kilometres further north, in some places more significantly filled in with lavas.

A hidden surprise lies close to the east of Jovis Tholus—a less developed volcano subtly causes the surface to bulge.

Zooming in shows a fissure vent, from which less viscous lava flows than at Jovis Tholus once erupted, perhaps in a similar style to the activity seen in Iceland or Hawaii on Earth.

Making a splash

In contrast to the volcanic craters, a very different type of crater lies to the north of the region. This 30-km-wide impact crater was created when an asteroid or comet crashed into the surface, penetrating the layers below. Its fractured floor and the fluidised nature of the ejected material around the central crater – giving it the appearance of a flower with many layers of petals – points to the impactor striking a water- or ice-saturated ground.  

More evidence of this region’s watery past lies to the northwest of the crater. Zooming in to the long fault line that truncates the top left of the plan view images are signs of an outflow channel. Water bursting out from here in the past formed streamlined islands and terraced channel walls. 

Some much smaller channels can be found crosscutting the northern ejecta blanket of the large impact crater as well. 

Massive amounts of water were likely purged from underground aquifers over time as a result of volcanic warming melting the ground ice, and as faulting took place, with the water taking the easiest way to the surface through the graben system. 

Taken together, this single scene paints the picture of a fascinating and extremely active planetary history. 

Mars Express has been orbiting the Red Planet since 2003, imaging Mars’ surface, mapping its minerals, identifying the composition and circulation of its tenuous atmosphere, probing beneath its crust, and exploring how phenomena such as the solar wind interacts in the martian environment.

Credit: European Space Agency (ESA)/German Aerospace Center (DLR)/Free University of Berlin (FU Berlin)

Release Date: January 26, 2022

#NASA #ESA #Space #Mars #Astronomy #Science #Geology #Planet #Volcano #JovisTholus #Craters #Spacecraft #MarsExpress #HRSC #Europe #DLR #FUBerlin #Berlin #Germany #Deutschland #STEM #Education

The Butterfly Effect | European Southern Observatory

The Butterfly Effect | European Southern Observatory

Around 60 million light-years away, in the constellation Virgo, the two galaxies NGC4567 and NGC4568, nicknamed the Butterfly Galaxies due to their wing-like structure, are beginning to collide and merge into each other. This is depicted in this picture captured by the FOcal Reducer and low dispersion Spectrograph 2 (FORS2) instrument, which is mounted on ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) at the Paranal Observatory in the Chilean Andes.

Galaxy collisions are not unusual in the Universe. We may imagine them to be violent and catastrophic, but in reality they are surprisingly peaceful, like a waltz performed by stars, gas and dust, choreographed by gravity. This kind of collision and merger is also thought to be the eventual fate of the Milky Way, which scientists believe will undergo a similar interaction with our neighbouring galaxy Andromeda.

FORS2 is often nicknamed Paranal’s “Swiss Army knife” for its incredible versatility, and it’s in fact one of our most demanded instruments. Besides capturing images like this one it can also take spectra of up to several tens of cosmic objects simultaneously, or study polarised light.

This image was created as part of the ESO Cosmic Gems programme, an outreach initiative to produce images of interesting, intriguing or visually attractive objects using ESO telescopes, for the purposes of education and public outreach. The programme makes use of telescope time that cannot be used for science observations. All data collected may also be suitable for scientific purposes, and are made available to astronomers through ESO’s science archive.

Credit: European Southern Observatory (ESO)

Release Date: January 24, 2022

#ESO #Astronomy #Space #Galaxies #Virgo #NGC4567 #NGC4568 #Cosmos #Universe #Telescope #VLT #FORS2 #Paranal #Observatory #Chile #Europe #STEM #Education

Monday, January 24, 2022

NASA Science: What’s Next for the James Webb Space Telescope?

 NASA Science: What’s Next for the James Webb Space Telescope?

The past month has been an exciting one for NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope — from launch in tropical French Guiana, to the two-week unfolding of this intricately-packed telescope, the observatory has gone through a huge transformation in space. What’s next for Webb as it cools down over the next five months?

Meet the experts: 

Dr. Amber Straughn is Deputy Project Scientist for Webb Science Communications at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland. She has been working on this mission for over 13 years and is most looking forward to the unexpected discoveries we’ll make with the telescope; the things that may completely surprise us. In her spare time, she loves hiking, yoga, flying, live music, and doing what she can to make her corner of the world a better place.

Miss Scarlin Hernandez is Webb Flight Systems Engineer at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Maryland. With the Webb mission, she is most looking forward to learning more about the origin of life and discovering things we didn’t know were out there. In her free time, she enjoys meditating, empowering others, listening to music and spending time with family and friends. 

Miss Tahira Allen is Communication Strategist for the NASA Headquarters digital media team in Washington. Completion of Webb’s major deployments in space was one of the most exciting moments for her during this mission. In her own words: "Talk about human ingenuity at its finest!” In Tahira's spare time she enjoys cooking, exercising, spending time with family and friends, mentoring University of Georgia students, and learning about world history.

Credit: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Duration: 54 minutes

Release Date: January 24, 2022

#NASA #JWST #Hubble #Astronomy #Space #Science #Galaxy #Galaxies #Cosmos #Universe #Telescope #ESA #CSA #Goddard #GSFC #STScI #STEM #Education

Galactic Strike? Interacting Galaxies | Hubble Space Telescope

Galactic Strike? Interacting Galaxies | Hubble 

The subject of this image is a group of three galaxies, collectively known as NGC 7764A. They were imaged by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, using both its Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3). The two galaxies in the upper right of the image appear to be interacting with one another—indeed, the long trails of stars and gas extending from them both give the impression that they have both just been struck at great speed, thrown into disarray by the bowling-ball-shaped galaxy to the lower left of the image. In reality, however, interactions between galaxies happen over very long time periods, and galaxies rarely collide head-on with one another. It is also unclear whether the galaxy to the lower left is actually interacting with the other two, although they are so relatively close in space that it seems possible that they are. By happy coincidence, the collective interaction between these galaxies have caused the two on the upper right to form a shape, which from our Solar System's perspective, ressembles the starship known as the USS Enterprise from Star Trek!

NGC 7764A, which lies about 425 million light years from Earth in the constellation Phoenix, is a fascinating example of just how awkward astronomical nomenclature can be. The three galaxies are individually referred to as NGC 7764A1, NGC 7764A2 and NGC 7764A3, and just to be really difficult, an entirely separate galaxy, named NGC 7764, sits in the skies about a Moon’s distance (as seen from Earth) away. This rather haphazard naming makes more sense when we consider that many of the catalogues for keeping track of celestial bodies were compiled well over 100 years ago, long before modern technology made standardising scientific terminology much easier. As it is, many astronomical objects have several different names, or might have names that are so similar to other objects’ names that they cause confusion.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, J. Dalcanton, Dark Energy Survey, DOE, FNAL, DECam, CTIO, NOIRLab/NSF/AURA, ESO

Acknowledgement: J. Schmidt

Release Date: January 24, 2022

#NASA #Hubble #Astronomy #Space #Science #Galaxy #Galaxies #NGC7764A #Cosmos #Universe #Telescope #ESA #Goddard #GSFC #STScI #STEM #Education