Where's Saturn? Is that a UFO--or the ISS? What's the name of that
star? Get the answers from mySKY--a
fun new astronomy helper from Meade. .
HANDS ON THE SUN:
The 7th annual HOTS conference for solar
observers and photographers is taking place this year in Irvine,
California, Oct. 4th-6th. This is a great opportunity for novices
to learn the art of solar photography from masters such as Gary
Palmer and Paul
Hyndman. In addition to hands-on training and the ever-popular
Fiesta Under the Stars, the conference features a Mt. Wilson telescope
tour led by comet hunter Dr. David Levy and a keynote
speech ("Sizing Up the Next Solar Cycle") by spaceweather.com's
Dr. Tony Phillips. Join
us if you can!
There is much discussion on the Internet
today concerning a reported
meteorite impact in Peru which may have gouged a 10- to 30-meter
wide crater. Bad-smelling fumes from the crater are said to have
dozens and perhaps hundreds of people in a nearby village. Could
this be true? (continued below)
There is indeed a hole in the ground in Peru, pictured above, and
by all accounts it smells bad, but it is not likely of cosmic origin.
In order to blast a 30-meter crater, a meteorite would have to hit
the ground with about as much energy as 1
kiloton of TNT--akin to a tactical nuclear weapon. This would
leave a clear signal in worldwide seismic and infrasound records,
but so far no such signals are being reported by authorities.
In short, we remain unconvinced. Stay tuned for updates.
THE SUN: Last week in Boulder, Colorado,
scientists converged on the "Living
With A Star" workshop to share the latest research in solar
physics. At one point, nearly 200 participants sat slack-jawed as
they watched a new
movie recorded by Japan's Hinode spacecraft showing a sunspot
emerging from the depths of the sun:
Click to launch the 19 MB movie.
According to some observers, the emerging spot resembled nothing
less than a swimming planet-sized trilobite. The unexpected form
and behavior of the sunspot is both a challenge and delight to researchers
working to understand solar activity. Get the full
story from Science@NASA.
2007 Aurora Gallery
[August 2007 Aurora Gallery]