Wikipedia picture of the day on December 16, 2017: Zedelnig mountain (2,330 metres (7,640 ft)) and alpine pasture Jamnigalm in the Tauern Valley near Mallnitz, High Tauern National Park, Carinthia Wikipedia"
Friday, December 15, 2017
Earth's annual Geminid meteor shower did not disappoint as our fair planet plowed through dust from active asteroid 3200 Phaethon. Captured in this northern hemisphere nightscape, the meteors stream away from the shower's radiant in Gemini. To create the image, 37 individual frames recording meteor streaks were taken over period of 8.5 hours during the night of December 12/13. In the final composite they were selected and registered against the starry sky above a radio telescope dish of MUSER, a solar-dedicated radio telescope array at astronomically-named Mingantu Station in Inner Mongolia, China, about 400 kilometers from Beijing. Sirius, alpha star of Canis Major, shines brightly just above the radio dish and the Milky Way stretches toward the zenith. Yellowish Betelgeuse is a standout in Orion to the right of the northen Milky Way. The shower's radiant is at top left, high above the horizon near Castor and Pollux the twin stars of Gemini. The radiant effect is due to perspective as the parallel meteor tracks appear to converge in the distance. Gemini's meteors enter Earth's atmosphere traveling at about 22 kilometers per second. via NASA
Thursday, December 14, 2017
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 15, 2017: Fog and frost on the Lysekil railway at Gåseberg in Lysekil Municipality, Sweden. The railway was inaugurated in 1913 and is still in use. Wikipedia"
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 14, 2017: First sunbeams sweep over a winter landscape. Path between Put van Nederhorst and Langweerderwielen. Location, Langweerderwielen (Langwarder Wielen) and surroundings, De Fryske Marren, Friesland, Netherlands. Wikipedia"
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 13, 2017: Two Soviet MiG-29 aircraft en route to an air show in British Columbia, Canada, are intercepted by F-15 Eagle aircraft of the 21st Tactical Fighter Wing. The Soviet MiG-29s are, for the first time, traveling to the Abbotsford International Airshow in Abbotsford, BC, Canada, to participate in the August 1989 airshow. The USAF F-15 Eagle interceptors actively guarding North American and United States of America's airspace are with the 21st Tactical Fighter Wing, headquartered at Elmendorf Air Force Base (AFB), Alaska, USA. Wikipedia"
Monday, December 11, 2017
What's up in the sky this winter? The featured graphic gives a few highlights for Earth's northern hemisphere. Viewed as a clock face centered at the bottom, early winter sky events fan out toward the left, while late winter events are projected toward the right. Objects relatively close to Earth are illustrated, in general, as nearer to the cartoon figure with the telescope at the bottom center -- although almost everything pictured can be seen without a telescope. Highlights of this winter's sky include the Geminids meteor shower peaking this week, the constellation of Orion becoming notable in the evening sky, and many planets being visible before sunrise in February. As true in every season, the International Space Station (ISS) can be sometimes be found drifting across your sky if you know just when and where to look. via NASA
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 12, 2017: Malachite kingfisher (Corythornis cristatus) on Lake Baringo, Kenya. To celebrate Jamhuri Day which marks Kenya's establishment as a republic on 12 December 1964. Wikipedia"
Sunday, December 10, 2017
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 11, 2017: Night view of Berlin Hauptbahnhof (English: Berlin Central Station), main railway station in Berlin, Germany. The station came into full operation in May 2006 and is located on the site of the historic Lehrter Bahnhof, which was opened in 1871 as the terminus of the railway linking Berlin with Lehrte (location near Hanover), which later became Germany's most important east-west main line. In 1987, it was extensively renovated to commemorate Berlin's 750th anniversary, and again in 2006 to its current appearance. Wikipedia"
Saturday, December 9, 2017
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 10, 2017: X-ray crystallography is a tool used for identifying the atomic and molecular structure of a crystal. The movement of the machine during 80 second scan can give different view on how relatively slow scientific measurements can look frozen in time by shutter speed of 90 seconds. Wikipedia"
Friday, December 8, 2017
This composition in stardust covers over 8 degrees on the northern sky. The mosaicked field of view is west of the familiar Pleiades star cluster, toward the zodiacal constellation Aries and the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy. At right in the deep skyscape is bluish Epsilon Arietis, a star visible to the naked-eye and about 330 light-years away. Reflecting starlight in the region, dusty nebulae LBN762, LBN753, and LBN743 sprawl left to right across the field, but are likely some 1,000 light-years away. At that estimated distance, the cosmic canvas is over 140 light-years across. Near the edge of a large molecular cloud, their dark interiors can hide newly formed stars and young stellar objects or protostars from prying optical telescopes. Collapsing due to self-gravity, the protostars form around dense cores embedded in the molecular cloud. via NASA
Thursday, December 7, 2017
December's Full Moon phase occurred near perigee, the closest point in its orbit around our fair planet. Big and bright, the fully illuminated lunar disk sets over rugged mountains in this early morningscape from Turin, Italy. Captured just before sunrise on the opposite horizon, scattered sunlight near the edge of Earth's shadow provides the beautiful reddish glow of the alpine peaks. Hills in the foreground are still in shadow. But the scattered sunlight just illuminates the dome and towers of Turin's historic Basilica of Superga on a hilltop near the lower right in the telephoto frame. via NASA
Wednesday, December 6, 2017
Tuesday, December 5, 2017
To some, it may look like a beehive harboring an evil bee. In reality, the featured Hubble image captures a cosmic pillar of dust, two-light years long, inside of which is Herbig-Haro 666 -- a young star emitting powerful jets. The structure lies within one of our galaxy's largest star forming regions, the Carina Nebula, shining in southern skies at a distance of about 7,500 light-years. The pillar's layered outline are shaped by the winds and radiation of Carina's young, hot, massive stars, some of which are still forming inside the nebula. A dust-penetrating view in infrared light better shows the two, narrow, energetic jets blasting outward from a still hidden infant star. via NASA
Monday, December 4, 2017
What's happening on the horizon? The horizon itself, past a spinach field in Guatemala, shows not only trees but a large volcano: the Volcán de Fuego (Volcano of Fire). The red glow at the top of the volcano is hot lava. But your eye may also be drawn to the blue circle above the horizon on the left. This circle surrounds the Moon and, together with other colors, is called a corona. A corona is caused by diffraction of light -- here moonlight -- by small water droplets in the Earth's intervening atmosphere. A break in the clouds on the right shows stars and even the planet Saturn far beyond the volcano. Although Volcán de Fuego frequently undergoes low-level activity, the astrophotographer considered himself lucky to capture the scene just during an explosive eruption in late September. via NASA
Wikipedia picture of the day on December 5, 2017: View of a path and the Miscanti lake, altiplano of the Antofagasta Region, northern Chile. The brackish water lake, located in Los Flamencos National Reserve, is separated from Miñiques Lake by a lava flow from an eruption of Miñiques volcano. Wikipedia"