Zoom To The Milky Way


Ever wanted a closer look at our Milky Way? Nick Risinger of ESO (Emerson Digitized Sky Observatory) zooms beyond Earth in the direction of Sagittarius. Beyond Sagittarius the camera switches to infrared, allowing us to see through and beyond cosmic dust clouds to objects orbiting the supermassive black hole at the heart of our galaxy.

This is the perfect week to lay naked eyes on the Milky Way. August 14 heralds a new moon, for the next week a waxing crescent moon sets just after sunset. From a rural location moonless night delivers Milky Ways iconic smudge across our sky. (The same Milky Way thousands of panicked callers reported as a UFO when California lights went out after the Northridge earthquake)

http://earthsky.org/tonight/time-to-see-the-starlit-milky-way

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NuSTAR Finds Super-Massive Black Holes


NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR ) satellite observatory has detected “high energy” x-rays from 5 galactic supermassive black holes. By aiming NuSTAR at nine potential “black hole” galaxies, scientists detected five massive black holes previously obstructed by gas/dust clouds.

A Hubble Space Telescope colour image of one of the nine galaxies targeted by NuSTAR. The high energy X-rays detected by NuSTAR revealed the presence of an extremely active supermassive black hole at the galaxy centre, deeply buried under a blanket of gas and dust. Image credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, NASA, ESA.

A Hubble Space Telescope color image of one of the nine galaxies targeted by NuSTAR. The high energy X-rays detected by NuSTAR revealed the presence of an extremely active supermassive black hole at the galaxy center, deeply buried under a blanket of gas and dust. Image credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, NASA, ESA.

Launched in 2012, NuSTAR is able to detect higher energy x-rays than previous satellites. Now researchers seem to have evidence backing the theory – countless black holes litter the universe, obstructed by clouds of cosmic interference.  On July 6, 2015 findings were presented to the Royal Astronomical Society’s National Astronomy Meeting in Wales. Head researcher George Lansbury said….

“For a long time we have known about supermassive black holes that are not obscured by dust and gas, but we suspected that many more were hidden from our view.

Thanks to NuSTAR for the first time we have been able to clearly see these hidden monsters that are predicted to be there, but have previously been elusive because of their ‘buried’ state.

Although we have only detected five of these hidden supermassive black holes, when we extrapolate our results across the whole Universe then the predicted numbers are huge and in agreement with what we would expect to see.”

http://earthsky.org/space/hidden-supermassive-black-holes-revealed?utm_source=EarthSky+News&utm_campaign=257e30c75e-EarthSky_News&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c643945d79-257e30c75e-393970565

Holey Space


Massive holes, deep holes, old holes – space holes. Holes in the vastness of space – vague, imperceptible apparitions free to behave anyway they please. Invisible cosmic riddles hidden from all but infrared light. Holes of unimaginable scope occupying the vast expanse  perceived as “empty”.  Holes without explanation or understanding – can they bend time, are they portals, do they obliterate everything foolish enough to wander up and say hello?

Images from the European Space Agency (ESA)  Herschel Space Observatory found a .2 light year wide hole in constellation Orion. Using infrared technology, Herschel verified a “blob” in nebula NGC 1999 (a star cluster within the confines of Orion) was indeed a hole in space as we know it. Science has a theory as to how the hole opened  (a void left when fledgling star cluster V380 Ori was born), beyond that – questions from depth to destiny are anyone’s guess.

A "hole in space" captured by Herschel.

A dark patch in a green blob of gas and dust (top) is a hole in the nebula NGC 1999.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/05/100512-science-space-black-hole-herschel-stars/

Our Milky Way galaxy churns around a “super massive” black hole. Black holes are all about gravity – imagine our planet the size of a dime – small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, but weighing the same and packing the exact gravitational forces as its former self. Next multiply that by hundreds, thousands, perhaps millions, and you have a black hole. A region of space so densely packed with matter, gravitational pull won’t let light escape. By definition – an object in space so dense that its escape velocity exceeds the speed of light.

Watch this video – black holes are beyond cool.

http://science.nasa.gov/astrophysics/focus-areas/black-holes/

The Conspiracy Conspiracy


I don’t believe we are alone in the universe; it isn’t reasonable to think in all those millions of galaxies some form of life doesn’t exist. The belief our world is only 6000 years old strikes me as pure lunacy; a sentient being did not create the world in less than a week. The 140 million mile wide black hole at the centre of the milky way galaxy is not the stairway to heaven. Cuttlefish can instantly change; not only the colour, but texture of their skin because evolution is a weird and wonderful thing. Not for one second do I think our historical timeline is accurate; history , civilization lost, whatever you want to call it, existed thousands of years before textbook history class. Governments keep us on a “need to know” basis, and money makes the world go round.

This makes me a conspiracy theorist; a person dismissed as “out there”, someone who dines on ancient aliens and buys into any hair brained argument that comes along. It isn’t about religion, science or politics; the tables have turned, I’ve been branded – open my mouth about Gobekli Tepe. Puma Punku, even solar flares and eyes start to roll. The other night I caught about 5 minutes of a TV show called Conspiracy Theory with Jessie Ventura; the subject was time travel. Jessie and his “team” were getting to the bottom of secret time travel conducted by the U.S. government, a whistle-blower claimed time travellers visited American presidents before they were elected, informing them of their destiny. I’m not able to say the how or why because something dawned on me while scrambling to change channels.

The conspiracy conspiracy seemed the only plausible explanation. Take ex pro wrestler, turned former Governor of Minnesota, Jessie Ventura; throw in Oliver Stone’s son as one of his “investigators”, turn them loose on scripted nonsense, pretty soon the mere mention of something unexplained smacks of crazy. Pure and evil genius.

How Could All Of You Be Right?


Recently I read a post on one of the blogs I follow. To make a long story short – the writers fundamentalist father- in- law declared there was no such thing as a “black hole” . FIL reasoned that God would not allow anything to be destroyed. It took a moment or two for the graveness of the situation to sink in. The writer, too dumbfounded to respond – walked away without uttering a word. Good for him. Any other response would have been futile.

This got me pondering. All of us know our world is divided by many religious views. Although I may not agree with them, I respect  individual beliefs or faith. The baffling thing is that they all think they’re right. Perhaps they should form a committee, a panel of religious leaders, coming together to make the world a better place. Rather than bicker about who had the “true God” they could redirect their efforts towards something that mattered.

What should a person of any faith care about who joins them at the pearly gates? Faith, spirituality, or the lack of either should be a choice not an obligation. If father- in- law believes a black hole is impossible who cares, at least he’s happy. The sooner we agree to disagree, the sooner we can move forward. You can’t all be right.

http://www.religionfacts.com/big_religion_chart.htm

world religions pie chart