Posts filed under ‘Science’
The Rosetta satellite and its probe payload arrived at the Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko Aug. 6 after 10 years, five months, and four days in space. Rosetta traveled 6.4 billion kilometers (3.98 billion miles) on its journey and orbited the sun five times.
The distance 510 million kilometers (317 million miles) between the comet and Earth means the ESA did not know for 28 minutes and 20 seconds whether or not the landing was successful.
Apparently the anchors that were supposed to fire and embed themselves in the comet did not fire so engineers are working on what to do about that but still, What. An. Amazing. Feat.
I’m not a scientist, but I love science.
(Note the audio, the sound of the “heartbeat” of the Sun.)
The surface of the sun from October 14th to 30th, 2014, showing sunspot AR 2192, the largest sunspot of the last two solar cycles (22 years). During this time sunspot AR 2191 produced six X-class and four M-class solar flares. The animation shows the sun in the ultraviolet 304 ångström wavelength, and plays at a rate of 52.5 minutes per second. It is composed of more than 17,000 images, 72 GB of data produced by the solar dynamics observatory (http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/) + (http://www.helioviewer.org/). This animation has be rendered in 4K, and resized to the Youtube maximum resolution of 3840×2160. The animation has been rotated 180 degrees so that south is ‘up’. The audio is the “heartbeat” of the sun, processed from SOHO HMI data by Alexander G. Kosovichev. Image processing and animation by James Tyrwhitt-Drake.
So often lately I’ve been disgusted with human beings but in this case all I want to do is reach back in time and say yes!, we’re wondering what’s out there too, lo these thousands of years later.
Excavated illegally in 1999 in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, the extraordinary Nebra Sky Disc is considered both the first known portable astronomical instrument and the oldest-known graphic depiction of celestial objects in human history.
Made of a blue-green copper inset with lustrous gold, the twelve-inch-wide disc contains an arrangement of seven stars probably representing the Pleiades. They’re in between a crescent moon on the right and either the full moon or sun in the center.
Gawd I love this:
At Pre-Launch Presser, First Female Russian Cosmonaut to Visit the Int’l Space Station is Asked About Her Hair
Will this kind of thing e-v-e-r end?
Food That Will Kill Us: Obama’s USDA, in the Hands of the Corporatocracy, is Making Our Food Inedible and Our Planet Unlivable
Ah yes, Obama’s USDA:
Despite the objections of hundreds of thousands of Americans and more than 50 members of Congress, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) granted final approval to a new generation of genetically engineered (GE) crops on Wednesday [September 17, 2014].
According to the agency’s own findings, the move could result in up to a sevenfold increase in the use of an older, more toxic herbicide known as 2,4-D, a compound used in Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. The new GE crops, also known as GMOs, approved include Dow’s Enlist Duo corn and soy. These crops were developing to survived sprayings of both glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller, and 2,4-D.
As an aside, to those who say Obama’s a great guy but his hands are tied because of the Republican-controlled House and the Republican do-nothings in the Senate, what say you about this? This is his USDA.
“The USDA’s approval of these crops is proof that today’s destructive, industrial agriculture model, based on a system of GMO mono-crops, is a failure,” says Ronnie Cummins, international director of the Organic Consumers Association and its Mexico affiliate, Via Organica. “Farmers have been sold the lie that they can increase yields and prevent crop failure from weeds by buying Monsanto’s and Dow’s GMO seeds and dousing them in toxic poisons, also manufactured and sold by Monsanto and Dow. But just as scientists predicted, these ‘miracle’ crops are evolving to resist the poisons thrown on them, causing the USDA and the EPA to approve increasingly toxic poisons to fight increasingly resistant weeds. Where does the escalation end?”
Wow. Via NASA:
As an island in the moist, atmospherically turbulent North Atlantic, Iceland is often shrouded in cloud cover and hard to observe from space. And lately, the island is making some of its own cloud cover, as the Earth has split open between the Bardarbunga and Askja volcanoes and spewed lava and hot gas. The view of the Holuhraun lava field has been spectacular from the ground and from low-flying aircraft. Infrared imaging makes the view spectacular from space, too.
On September 6, 2014, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 captured this view of the ongoing eruption. The false-color images combine shortwave infrared, near infrared, and green light (OLI bands 6-5-3). Ice and the plume of steam and sulfur dioxide appear cyan and bright blue, while liquid water is navy blue. Bare or rocky ground around the Holuhraun lava field appears in shades of green or brown in this band combination. Fresh lava is bright orange and red.