Posts Tagged ‘space’

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Published on Dec 10, 2013

When NASA’s Juno spacecraft flew past Earth on Oct. 9, 2013, it received a boost in speed of more than 8,800 mph (about 7.3 kilometer per second), which set it on course for a July 4, 2016, rendezvous with Jupiter.

One of Juno’s sensors, a special kind of camera optimized to track faint stars, also had a unique view of the Earth-moon system. The result was an intriguing, low-resolution glimpse of what our world would look like to a visitor from afar.

The cameras that took the images for the movie are located near the pointed tip of one of the spacecraft’s three solar-array arms. They are part of Juno’s Magnetic Field Investigation (MAG) and are normally used to determine the orientation of the magnetic sensors. These cameras look away from the sunlit side of the solar array, so as the spacecraft approached, the system’s four cameras pointed toward Earth. Earth and the moon came into view when Juno was about 600,000 miles (966,000 kilometers) away — about three times the Earth-moon separation.

During the flyby, timing was everything. Juno was traveling about twice as fast as a typical satellite, and the spacecraft itself was spinning at 2 rpm. To assemble a movie that wouldn’t make viewers dizzy, the star tracker had to capture a frame each time the camera was facing Earth at exactly the right instant. The frames were sent to Earth, where they were processed into video format.

The music accompaniment is an original score by Vangelis.

The full image caption for this movie is available at:http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/cata…

600,000 miles away.

Damn, no wonder it’s so small.

Adds a humbling perspective to things.

Don’t it?

Peace.

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Ah ha! The weirdness continues!

This NASA Hubble Space Telescope set of images from Sept. 10, 2013 reveals a never-before-seen set of six comet-like tails radiating from a body in the asteroid belt designated P/2013 P5. Image Credit: NASA, ESA, D.Jewitt/UCLA

This NASA Hubble Space Telescope set of images from Sept. 10, 2013 reveals a never-before-seen set of six comet-like tails radiating from a body in the asteroid belt designated P/2013 P5. Image Credit: NASA, ESA, D.Jewitt/UCLA

Sploid Gizmodo – 11/07/13 — The object in these photographs captured by Hubble is not a comet. It’s something that no astronomer has ever seen before, according to NASA: An asteroid with six comet-like tails that isn’t moving like a comet and it’s not made of ice. It’s just hanging up there, rotating like a crazy space spider.

According to lead investigator David Jewitt of the University of California at Los Angeles, “we were literally dumbfounded when we saw it [in the solar system’s asteroid belt] We were completely knocked out.”

NASA says that “unlike all other known asteroids, which appear simply as tiny points of light, this asteroid, designated P/2013 P5, resembles a rotating lawn sprinkler. Astronomers are puzzled over the asteroid’s unusual appearance.” Read more…

A lot of discoveries out there these days! The more, the merrier, right? Keep ‘em coming!

Some seem to think it’s from a collision. Or rotational breakup. Or pressure from the Sun. Or something. NASA itself doesn’t seem to know what to make of it at the moment.

Good.

Discovery! Investigation! Science!

Peace.

Well now, this is mighty unusual…

PSO J318.5-22, artist's impression

PSO J318.5-22, artist’s impression. Credit: MPIA/V. Ch. Quetz

Science Daily – Oct. 9, 2013 — An international team of astronomers has discovered an exotic young planet that is not orbiting a star. This free-floating planet, dubbed PSO J318.5-22, is just 80 light-years away from Earth and has a mass only six times that of Jupiter. The planet formed a mere 12 million years ago — a newborn in planet lifetimes.

It was identified from its faint and unique heat signature by the Pan-STARRS 1 (PS1) wide-field survey telescope on Haleakala, Maui. Follow-up observations using other telescopes in Hawaii show that it has properties similar to those of gas-giant planets found orbiting around young stars. And yet PSO J318.5-22 is all by itself, without a host star.

“We have never before seen an object free-floating in space that that looks like this. It has all the characteristics of young planets found around other stars, but it is drifting out there all alone,” explained team leader Dr. Michael Liu of the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. “I had often wondered if such solitary objects exist, and now we know they do.”

Read more…

The last line above from Dr. Liu gives me a smile and some hope. The sense of wonder is so important to us. I am glad it’s still out there. Really.

If it can be imagined, it’s out there. Things that can’t be imagined are no doubt out there, too. That’s exciting.

So many questions. Did it form out there? Around a star? If so, what happened to it? Maybe it’s a Dyson Sphere! Might it have life? I bet it does.

We need to build a way to go there and see. That should be our planetary goal.

Peace.

Boffins Baffled!

LOL!

Sorry, I’m OK now.

Hehe. It’s just that I love when the boffins are baffled. Especially in astronomy. There are so many things we have no idea about. Models and paradigms are created based on the data at hand and are seemingly ingrained as fact in the minds of many. But they are not facts, they are merely good ideas given what information is available and people’s interpretation of it.

Planet Kepler-78b, a rocky planet much like our own, has just been discovered orbiting a star that is also much like our own.  It is however, so different that astronomers simply do not understand how it can possibly exist. I like that.

Kepler78b, artist's impression. Credit: TNG/Avet Harutyunyan

Kepler-78b, artist’s impression. Credit: TNG/Avet Harutyunyan

Sky Mania – October 30, 2013 — “This planet is a complete mystery,” says astronomer David Latham of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA). “We don’t know how it formed or how it got to where it is today. What we do know is that it’s not going to last forever.” Colleague Dimitar Sasselov said: “Kepler-78b is going to end up in the star very soon, astronomically speaking. It couldn’t have formed in place because you can’t form a planet inside a star. It couldn’t have formed further out and migrated inward, because it would have migrated all the way into the star. This planet is an enigma.” Dr Ken Rice, of the University of Edinburgh said: “Although this planet is clearly too hot to support life, it is still very exciting to now be discovering planets that are not only similar in mass to the Earth, but also similar in composition.”

Read more…

The main difficulty is that the orbit is only a million miles from the star. A year on it lasts a quick 8 and a half hours. The rocks at the surface are pretty toasty and would be much like permanently molten lava. It is thought that stars shrink as they age, so the mere presence of this object where it sits seems impossible with current thought.

And yet… there it is.

Awesome.

Peace.

On the 19th of July, 2013, the spacecraft called Cassini took about 20 minutes out of its mission at Saturn to look far, far away – 898 million miles back in the direction it had come, held itself very still… and took some inspiring pictures of its home…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

From NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Cal Tech’s news release… comes this snippet:

“We can’t see individual continents or people in this portrait of Earth, but this pale blue dot is a succinct summary of who we were on July 19,” said Linda Spilker, Cassini project scientist, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “Cassini’s picture reminds us how tiny our home planet is in the vastness of space, and also testifies to the ingenuity of the citizens of this tiny planet to send a robotic spacecraft so far away from home to study Saturn and take a look-back photo of Earth.”

Nicely put, Ms. Spilker…

Back in 1990, the Voyager 1 spacecraft also took Earth’s picture as it bid farewell to the solar system. A truly amazing image it is… one that prompted Carl Sagan to offer some thoughts on the implications of what thereafter became known as The Pale Blue Dot.

Here is that image, from 4 billion miles away – followed by Dr. Sagan’s words…

Pale Blue Dot by Voyager 1 1990 via nprImage source, a fine article on NPR.

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”

― Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space

Inspiring times we live in. I still hope someday that we can heed the words above… just imagine what could be done… what wonders could be found,,, how rich our lives could be.

MrSpechtler Published on Jun 2, 2013

Die ESA-Sonde Mars Express ist seit 10 Jahren unterwegs und umkreist seitdem den Roten Planeten. Das Original-Video stammt von der DRL und kann sich auch unter nachfolgender URL angeschaut werden: http://www.dlr.de/dlr/desktopdefault….

Google translation: The ESA’s Mars Express has been 10 years since the road and circled the Red Planet. The original video is from the DRL and can be looked at under the following URL: http://www.dlr.de/dlr/desktopdefault ….

Nice views. Beautiful views.

Not much to say at the moment as the distractions of duty abound… so, for your viewing pleasure… watch this.

It’s a series of aerial flyby views of various Martian landscapes.

It is done by overlaying photographs from the craft’s stereo camera onto 3D maps made from precise laser altimeter data. This allows them to use 3D programs to generate the flyovers.

They could also, if they wanted, generate ground level walkthroughs… that would be spectacular, I bet.

Enjoy and Peace.

Published on May 22, 2013

This program profiles the mission of Apollo 16, and presents FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME interviews with ALL THREE astronauts who went on that mission, Commander John Young, Lunar Module Pilot Charlie Duke, and Command Module Pilot TK Mattingly. Apollo 16: The Men, Moon and Memories is an engaging, unique, and definitive one-hour documentary, looking at this historic mission through the eyes of those who participated in it.

The successful Apollo 16 Manned Lunar Landing Mission was the second in a series of three science-oriented missions planned for the Apollo program. The major objective of the mission was to investigate the largest area ever covered of the lunar surface thanks to the newly created Lunar Rover which gave the Astronauts the ability to cover miles of turain in a short amount of time.

©UFOTV® and NASAFLIX®, a UFO Video, Inc. Company.

Visit us online: http://www.UFOTV.com

This film is really quite nicely done.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I clicked on it since it was from a UFO-related site, which, to be frank, often means trouble, but once it started, I couldn’t stop watching it.

It was a nice feeling and a refreshing surprise.

Gosh, there are so many stories contained within; fabulous footage from before, during and after the mission; personal recollections galore, great insights and even a few funny stories… most if not all of which I had never heard before… I assure you that you will not regret watching this movie.

Enjoy and Peace.

Planetfall, Enceladus, vents

Space.com – Enceladus vents water into space from its south polar region. The moon is lit by the Sun on the left, and backlit by the vast reflecting surface of its parent planet to the right. Icy crystals from these plumes are likely the source of Saturn’s nebulous E ring, within which Enceladus orbits. Mosaic composite photograph. Cassini, December 25, 2009.
CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Michael Benson/Kinetikon Pictures. © All rights reserved.

From Saturn Moon Enceladus Eyed for Sample-Return Mission at Space.com:

SAN FRANCISCO — Scientists are developing a mission concept that would snag icy particles from Saturn’s moon Enceladus and return them to Earth, where they could be analyzed for signs of life.

The spacecraft would fly through the icy plume blasted into space by geysers near Enceladus’ south pole, then send the collected particles back to our planet in a return capsule. Enceladus may be capable of supporting life, and the flyby sample-return mission would bring pieces from its depths to Earth at a reasonable price, researchers said.

“This is really the low-hanging fruit” of sample-return missions, said study leader Peter Tsou of Sample Exploration Systems in La Canada, Calif., who presented the idea here Wednesday (Dec. 5) at the annual fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. “It would be a shame not to pick it.”

[]

If the mission is approved, it could probably be ready to launch by 2020, Tsou added. Samples from Enceladus’ plume would make it to Earth about 14 years later.

Enceladus is a great candidate for sample-return, Tsou said. Its geyser-blasted particles are fresh, having come right out of the moon’s subsurface ocean. The mission can be done without landing on and re-launching from another world, two costly and complicating extra steps. And Enceladus seems to have all the ingredients necessary to support life.

“That doesn’t mean life is there,” Tsou said. “But we want to find out.”

Well, dang, doc, I want to find out, too!

I mean, just think… !

Enceladus is an awesome place. Seriously, I have always had a gut feeling that there are critters there.

Too bad it will be so far off, man, seven long years… but

It would be awesome if a base could be established, robotic, no doubt, that would bore through the ice to the ocean below… and have streaming video. Should be able to sort out the streaming part by then, eh?

There’s a strange old post here from October ‘09 called The Critters Of Enceladus,

Ha! That was a fun one.

Here’s a pic…

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

shocking

Yes, indeed, Enceladus is a fine place to get real and tangible material to study.

Peace.

P.S. This was a draft from way back in January… sigh.

 

Cool! This is really cool!

And here it is… one of Project 1640’s direct images of the HR 8799 planetary system, located a mere 128 light years from Earth:

Project 1640's direct image of the HR 8799 planetary system, 128 light years from Earth.

This image of the HR 8799 planets was taken with starlight optically suppressed and data processing conducted to remove residual starlight. The star is at the center of the blackened circle in the image. The four spots indicated with the letters b through e are the planets. This is a composite image using 30 wavelengths of light and was obtained over a period of 1.25 hours on June 14 and 15, 2012. Credit: Project 1640

I like this.

This Project 1640 that scientists led by Ben R. Oppenheimer at the American Museum of Natural History cooked up is most impressive.

Ben R. Oppenheimer is associate curator and chair of the Astrophysics Department at the American Museum of Natural History.

Researchers have conducted a remote reconnaissance of a distant solar system with a new telescope imaging system that sifts through the blinding light of stars. Using a suite of high-tech instrumentation and software called Project 1640, the scientists collected the first chemical fingerprints, or spectra, of this system’s four red exoplanets, which orbit a star 128 light years away from Earth. A detailed description of the planets—showing how drastically different they are from the known worlds in the universe—was accepted Friday for publication in The Astrophysical Journal.

I’m thinking that this success will be repeated quite often in future. It seems likely to my way of thinking that most stars would have a planetary system as standard equipment if the disc accretion theory is right. There are, it would seem, on cursory inspection… a lot of stars.

1640 instrument in the Hale scope.

This photo shows the Project 1640 instrument in the telescope dome of the 200-inch Hale Telescope at Palomar Observatory, prior to being installed for observations. Credit: Palomar Observatory/S. Kardel

The instrument, which uses all 200 inches of the nicely formed optics within the world-renowned Hale telescope at Palomar Observatory in California, has 200 of those stars listed in its target itinerary.

The mission is a three-year survey, launched in June 2012. The 200 stars in the list are all within about 150 light years of our solar system.

The project involves researchers from the California Institute of Technology, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Cambridge University, New York University, and the Space Telescope Science Institute, in addition to Oppenheimer’s team at the Museum.

The image above is not in the visual range, as the instrument is a spectrograph. It reveals the chemical composition of objects in its field of view. This is vital data which shows what a planet, or at least its atmosphere, is made out of. And that means that it can detect if a planet has or is capable of having life onboard. How cool is that?

These four, which had actually been imaged before this development, are not candidates for life as we know it, unfortunately but they are intriguing as it would appear that they are quite weird!

I like that, too! Ha!

The results are “quite strange,” Oppenheimer said. “These warm, red planets are unlike any other known object in our universe. All four planets have different spectra, and all four are peculiar. The theorists have a lot of work to do now.”

Also…

“The spectra of these four worlds clearly show that they are far too toxic and hot to sustain life as we know it,” said co-author Ian Parry, a senior lecturer at the Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge University. “But the really exciting thing is that one day, the techniques we’ve developed will give us our first secure evidence of the existence of life on a planet outside our solar system.”

And…

In addition to revealing unique planets, the research debuts a new capability to observe and rapidly characterize exoplanetary systems in a routine manner, something that has eluded astronomers until now because the light that stars emit is tens of millions to billions of times brighter than the light given off by planets. This makes directly imaging and analyzing exoplanets extremely difficult: as Oppenheimer says, “It’s like taking a single picture of the Empire State Building from an airplane that reveals the height of the building as well as taking a picture of a bump on the sidewalk next to it that is as high as a couple of bacteria.”

I am excited by the implications of this remarkable development in spectroscopic instrumentation. This is going to give us some fabulous things to think about. We can only hope that the results that I expect will eventually show themselves will do wonders for the inspiration of many and trigger a renewed sense of the need to explore. Exploration is a wonderful thing.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2013-03-astronomers-remote-reconnaissance-solar.html#jCp

To view the science paper and supporting images, go to: http://www.amnh.org/our-research/physical-sciences/astrophysics/research/project-1640

To see where HR 8799 is in relation to Earth, watch this Digital Universe visualization: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yDNAk0bwLrU

American Museum of Natural History (amnh.org)

Enjoy… and wonder!

Peace.

Uploaded on Aug 27, 2010

Apollo 16’s LRV rolling about the surface of the moon.

video stabilized using Deshaker v2.5 filter for VirtualDub 1.9.9

Source: Apollo Mission 16mm High Definition Transfers

Nice. Very nice.

Kudos and props to britoca, the uploader, for finding, stabilizing and sharing this footage.

Being so distracted lately I don’t remember seeing this clip, although I surely must have at some point, but, hey, here it is now and that’s what counts.

Peace.

Hey, get a load of this…

Titan's Nile (full)

From Wired

Vast Alien River System Spotted on Saturn’s Moon Titan

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has spotted a river system stretching more than 200 miles on Saturn’s moon Titan.

Though it isn’t the Nile — which is more than 20 times as long — the mighty river provides further evidence that this odd little moon is a wet world not unlike our own. Many lakes and small rivers have been found already on Titan but the newly discovered stream is the largest yet and represents the first time scientists have seen such a vast liquid system on any world other than Earth.

Titan’s mini-Nile doesn’t flow with water, which freezes to be hard as stone on the moon, but rather liquid hydrocarbons such as methane and ethane, which are stable in the moon’s -290 degree Fahrenheit average temperatures. From its headwaters, the flow follows a fault line and runs into the Kraken Mare, one of three gigantic seas that cover Titan’s northern hemisphere. Titan’s liquid cycle also includes seasonal downpours, which have been spotted from orbit. Whether all this liquid improves the chances for life on Titan remains an open mystery.

The enormous image above was acquired on Sept. 26 but only released on Dec. 12.

Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASI

The Saturnian system has always excited me. It is seriously cool… and seriously exotic. A treasure trove of anomalies. I have long said that the farther out you go, the stranger and weirder things get; and I am pleased to report that this observation has yet to disappoint me.

Okay, so this river isn’t exactly weird, being, well, a river, but it’s nice and long and actually is pretty exotic as outlined above and I, for one, am more than willing to speculate that there are a wide variety of critters living in and around those currents. And eddies! I love eddies. Sorry.

Not to go too off-topic, but you can probably guess that I really, truly like the fact that the ocean this river feeds is called the Kraken Mare. WAAAH!
I am hoping with all my heart that naming it that proves to be the very definition of “foresight!”

I’d say this calls for at least a rover. Better yet, how about a sub to go with it!

Edit to add that the Kraken Mare is five times bigger than Lake Superior!

Peace.

Oh dear. First my dear Doc Watson… and now Ray Bradbury, who, as you might imagine, meant a whole heck of a lot to this searching mind. I can’t really write too much at the moment, I’m sorry, it’s too emotional.

What a beautiful, sweet man. And what an inspiration he has been and will continue forever to be to so many.

I will just play these two videos in his honor.

In Memoriam: Ray Bradbury 1920-2012

Published on Jun 6, 2012 by 

A Mars rover driver pays tribute to author and visionary, Ray Bradbury.

Published on Jun 6, 2012 by 

Through the years, Ray Bradbury attended several major space mission events at JPL/Caltech.

On Nov. 12, 1971, on the eve of Mariner 9 going into orbit at Mars, Bradbury took part in a symposium at Caltech with Arthur C. Clarke, journalist Walter Sullivan, and scientists Carl Sagan and Bruce Murray. In this excerpt, Bradbury reads his poem, If Only We Had Taller Been.

Sir, be seeing you…

Peace.

I love Martian dust devils. Really. I do. Don’t know why, really… they’re just cool – in a decidedly alien sort of way. Yeah, yeah, we have plenty of them on Earth, but, well, these are on Mars. They act kind of weird. So there.

In case you have never seen any, here is a nice video of a whole bunch of them. Just 8 seconds and… Just delightful! To get the proper impact flowing through your synapses, you really should watch this in full screen. Note their size. You’ll need this spectacle lodged firmly in your head to fully dig the upcoming video.

Uploaded by on Dec 30, 2007

Dust devils on Mars sweep past the NASA rover Spirit. Movie sequence made by MERDAT. Sorry about the Chinese date tag, I am currently working on including other language capabilities in the programs image tagging function. Still image data courtesy NASA/PDS.

Okay… now that you are well-grounded in the visual coolness of dust devils on our dear Mars… get a load of this:

This next one is remarkable and quite seriously stunning.

I have never seen one this big! This ‘video’ is just a HiRISE image so we can’t see it’s true power and beauty, but after checking the video above, you will most likely get what I’m driving at here. It must be just intense to watch! Apologies in advance for the silly robovoice, maybe this tuber doesn’t have a mic.

Uploaded by on Mar 7, 2012

The Serpent Dust Devil of Mars
A towering dust devil casts a serpentine shadow over the Martian surface in this stunning, late springtime image of Amazonis Planitia.
http://www.uahirise.org/images/2012/details/cut/ESP_026051_2160-2.jpg

The length of the shadow indicates that the dust plume reaches more than 800 meters, or half a mile, in height. The tail of the plume does not trace the path of the dust devil, which had been following a steady course towards the southeast and left a bright track behind it.

The delicate arc in the plume was produced by a westerly breeze at about a 250-meter height that blew the top of the plume towards the east. The westerly winds and the draw of warmth to the south combine to guide dust devils along southeast trending paths, as indicated by the tracks of many previous dust-devils. The dust plume itself is about 30 meters in diameter.

Numerous bright tracks trend from northwest to southeast. It is interesting to see that these tracks are bright, whereas dust-devil tracks elsewhere on Mars are usually dark. Dark tracks are believed to form where bright dust is lifted from the surface by dust devils, revealing a darker substrate.
http://www.uahirise.org/images/2012/details/cut/ESP_026051_2160-1.jpg

Here in Amazonis, the dust cover is too thick to be penetrated by such scouring. A blanket of bright dust was deposited over this region recently, just before the arrival of MRO, so the surface dust here can still be moved. Perhaps the bright tracks form when the settled dust is stirred up by the strong winds generated by the dust devils (tangential wind speeds of up to 70 miles per hour have been recorded in HiRISE images of other dust devils).

It’s also interesting that this image was taken during the time of year when Mars is farthest from the Sun. Just as on Earth, Martian winds are powered by solar heating. Exposure to the sun’s rays should be at a minimum during this season, yet even now, dust devils act relentlessly to clean the surface of freshly deposited dust, a little at a time.

Written by: Paul Geissler (7 March 2012)

This is a stereo pair with ESP_025985_2160.
http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_025985_2160

– Credit HiRISE – NASA/JPL/University of Arizona –

Link – http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_026051_2160

Nice, huh?

Peace.

Wow!

This is just way too cool not to share.

27 seconds of something I have never seen before; and in remarkably high resolution to boot. When you think about it you realize that this whirling dervish of hot plasma is just huge… I’d say it’s quite likely to be nearly as big as the Earth!

Uploaded by on Feb 16, 2012

http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/gallery/potw.php?v=item&id=87

This 30 hour time lapse sequence was recorded this month by the obviously awesome Solar Dynamics Observatory which is run by the Goddard Space Flight Center. If you go to the web page for this video, (linked just above), you can download some nice copies in Quicktime and mpeg (and a tif picture) without all that nasty YouTube compression.

Here’s what they say…

As if it could not make up it’s mind . . . darker, cooler plasma slid and shifted back and forth above the Sun’s surface seen here for 30 hours (Feb. 7-8, 2012) in extreme ultraviolet light. An active region rotating into view provides a bright backdrop to the gyrating streams of plasma. The particles are being pulled this way and that by competing magnetic forces. They are tracking along strands of magnetic field lines. This kind of detailed solar observation with high-resolution frames and a four-minute cadence was not possible until SDO, which launched two years ago on Feb. 11, 2010. So it’s our 2nd Anniversary!

Edit to add: I thought I would include this jpg of the tif image that you can download for those who can’t watch videos, whether you’re at work or are device-challenged.

Solar Dark Matter by SDO/GSFC/NASA

Go NASA!

Peace.

Strange. I keep subscribing to LunaCognita’s YouTube channel, but it just doesn’t stick for some reason.

In any event, the nearly year-old second video in this thread caught my eye in a thread about it at my hangout, ATS, started by Arken. Being, as many of you know, a fan of LC’s work, I needed to share it with you and wound up including the first video shown here, which is a very recent one.

On this first one, Luna uses the frame stacking technique to bring out the details. For the doubters let me just say that this method is 100% legitimate, is used daily by photographers the world over and works really well. It is very handy and I have used it myself with great results. It is not destructive in the slightest, quite the opposite, actually, it does not add anything that is not already there. Luna adds a touch of contrast is added later here to bring the thingies out just a bit more and that is quite alright considering the condition of the initial frames.

One wonders if the objects are what was intended to be filmed.

I would imagine so, as film stock was a finite commodity.

There are some who might say that these are detritus within the camera or the command module. I’ll just say they certainly don’t seem that way to me.

Uploaded by on Jan 18, 2012

Hi again everyone. This presentation focuses on taking a closer look at a 23.5-second segment of 16mm DAC motion picture footage from the NASA archives that was originally exposed over 40 years ago during the Apollo 12 mission (November 1969). This footage was shot with the DAC camera mounted near a window in the Command/Service Module while the spacecraft was in lunar orbit above the Moon.

Unfortunately, this raw footage, as it is officially archived by NASA, appears to have been over-exposed and accidentally ruined when the lens on the 16mm DAC camera aboard the spacecraft somehow became unintentionally fogged over shortly before filming began. Because of this, this film sequence only affords us a blurry, obfuscated view out the spacecraft window, showing an oblique look at the sunlit (and overexposed) lunar surface with a portion of the lunar limb also visible.

While the raw footage is of poor quality, it does however still contain some viable image data that can be recovered and revealed thru enhancement. The application of various frame-stacking and averaging enhancement techniques can allow us to extract significantly more detail from the scene than the raw archive frames of footage alone appear to surrender. These stack enhancements will allow you to see what appears to be at least three unidentified objects transiting in front of the lunar disc that were actually caught on film here.

Unfortunately, the lack of viable image data and over-exposed nature of the raw footage provides does not allow for a high-detail look at these three distinct contrast targets, so that raises the possibility that one of these moving contrast targets is actually a shadow from one of the unidentified objects above being dropped onto the lurain. The high sun angle that we know was illuminating this scene at the time could certainly allow for that possibility, but would require us to make the unsupported assumption that these unidentified objects are very close to the Moon and are scooting just above the lunar surface.

The reality is that there is simply no way to accurately determine or even estimate any range or size data for these unidentified objects shown. What we can say is that multiple objects can be seen transiting the lunar disc here and can be determined to at the time have been located somewhere in 3-D object space between the camera aboard the CSM spacecraft and the surface of the Moon.

Cheers everyone, and thanks for watching!
LunaCognita

Pretty neat, eh?

I think so.

On to the next one.

The description below pretty much says it all as usual. And as usual the production values are to a very high standard which I appreciate being trained as a filmmaker and all. Wish I could find my old After Effects CD in the rubble of my local environs. Had to put in a new C drive array, needs to go back in. Luna’s films always stoke that urge in me and I do actually have a very interesting sequence of still images that are just itching to be a joined together as a movie. The depression always gets in the way, though. Always. Oh, man, I hope they’re not on the dead Glyph, as I can’t afford to send it out for repair and naturally it’s a stripe so the data on it is in cosmic hands. Sigh.

Good gracious, how did that off topic rant get in here? Didn’t derail things too badly, methinks.

Respected realist Phage, who I like a lot, was saying, among others, that some of the irregularly shaped objects you will see are the aforementioned detritus and anomalies with the film or processing or scanning. Maybe some are. Maybe not. I have seen such flaws on many images. Many are quite obvious and some scanner dust artifacts can look pretty strange. Some of them here at the least I would say are surely not flaws.

Man, I haven‘t pored over “originals” in so long and now don’t have much time to do it anyway, but, I finally got a nice big tiff of the image with the notorious Shard on it yesterday. As is so typical, however, I’ve not even opened it yet. But at least I have it. Always wanted it. Go me.

Anyway, I could go on and on like that for ages, so to spare you from further horror I will say here you go…

Uploaded by on Mar 11, 2011

This presentation is a simple compilation of some more anomalous photographs and 16mm DAC film footage that I have archived during my years of research and investigation looking into the activities of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

The images and footage shown here were taken during the Apollo program, filmed by the astronaut flight crews during their journeys to and from the Moon.

Most of what I show here involves “lunar transients” – unidentified objects in space that were captured on film as they transited in front of (or passed near) a celestial body such as the Moon or Earth. I believe many of these objects are not on the lunar surface, but rather were above the lunar surface when captured on film.

I also include several examples of NASA image obfuscation as well, just to help highlight the fact that the space agency also removes anomalous objects from frame in order to “sanitize” scenes prior to official archive release so as to ensure they do not reveal too much of the truth about what is really up there.

Hope you enjoy!
Cheers,
LC

Here are a few links to the last set of images I show, dealing with the detection of cropping obfuscation being employed to sanitize the scenes.
NASA “Gateway” archive link to frame#AS11-36-5319 – shows object off the Earth’s limb.
http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/scripts/sseop/photo.pl?mission=AS11&roll=36&f…

NASA “LPI” archive version of #AS11-36-5319 that does not show the object (residue of the cropping is detectable under enhancement)
http://www.lpi.usra.edu/resources/apollo/images/print/AS11/36/5319.jpg

Cropping proof – second last image shown (AS16-118-18873).
ftp://nssdcftp.gsfc.nasa.gov/miscellaneous/planetary/apollo/a16_h_118_18873.tiff

Cropping proof – Last image shown (AS13-60-8588).
ftp://nssdcftp.gsfc.nasa.gov/miscellaneous/planetary/apollo/a13_h_60_8588.tiff

Thanks, Cary, well done, man, well done.

Peace.

Okay, now… this caught my eye in a slightly off-topic post in an ATS thread on alleged Apollo photo manipulation started by the uploader of the first video in this thread. I won’t go into the details of that thread, I’ll just say I didn’t find it at all compelling… for a few reasons. I’d seen some of his threads before and, some are interesting, but information is usually withheld, so, caveat emptor, eh?

This video however is quite straightforward. I will freely admit to my romantic half’s desire to find “something” having an effect with it, but, still, it is quite intriguing in my view.

I have been getting more and more careful as I age. Eww, I said the a-word. Ha! I’ve been hoodwinked before and there are quite a few threads on my blogs I wish I’d been more careful with and never posted. There have been changes, let’s put it that way… and all for the better.

So, anyway… this vid is ‘on the edge,’ as it were. Its original source is good, obviously, but it’s in very low res, on the H.264 codec and being played by Flash, so like anything you see on YouTube it’s not, shall we say, ideal for research.

But it’s pretty darn cool… one does not expect to see little things seemingly flying around in the ISS.

To the guys credit he does put up (in the description) the possibility that they are just four bits of paper or something blowing around in the A/C, but, even at this res… I too am not so sure.

Especially of the other two… that appear to be… crawling.

Those two are mainly why this is here, despite the awful resolution.

Here you go…

Uploaded by  on Jun 11, 2011

Hi there!

Perhaps my eyes are playing tricks on me but I really thought to have seen spacecritters flying and crawling around INSIDE the ISS! Do we have alien lifeforms / critters visiting the ISS?

Why don’t you take a peek and convince yourselves. As soon as the astronaut has disappeared the show starts.

The first flying critter appears 45 seconds into the video (on top of the instrument panel), the second one shows up at 1.39 (center right), the third critter we see in the upper right corner at 3.50 and the fourth one at 4.00 in the lower right corner. You should also check for some slight movements on the instrumentpanel. This looks like a couple crawling critters. (Or is it a reflection of light?)

In order to exclude or eliminate NASA’s biological experiments aboard the ISS, I checked whether NASA (recently) had been performing any experiments involving butterflies or bugs. There have not been such experiments!

So what is it we see?

As some people claim: small pieces of paper flying around, lifted and transported through the air by the airflow coming from the ventilation system.

Really? These “things” come from several directions and they do not look like pieces of paper to me.

Looking at the way they move, you could compare it with how single cell organisms swim inside a fluid. Are we seeing something we were not supposed to?

Greetz,

Sander

This next vid was posted on YT as a response to the one above and focuses on the crawly fellas. It’s zoomed in a tad which is good for the purpose.

Uploaded by  on Jun 13, 2011

Your eyes are not playing tricks on you. Otherwise their playing tricks on me too.

Not just spacecritters flying around INSIDE the ISS, but also MORPHING shadows!

The show start before the astronaut disappear …

At least two morphing shadows, black critters and some unexplanable “metallic” reflexes… what do you think they are??

I’ve no idea… there is only speculation and conjecture. I would love to know. I can only enjoy the show and wonder if we will ever know. I wonder, too, if there is any other footage showing these anomalies. I bet there is. Can we, while I’m doing all this wondering, get the full res originals?

Peace.

Let this custom Speck case and Apollo 15’s notorious Top Secret Shot protect your iPad from the rigors of reality.

just what did the crew see, anyway?
I really want to know, but I doubt any of us ever will.

This is the mysterious “final” frame from film magazine 83… the very existence of which was totally suppressed by NASA for over 30  long years.

This is image number AS15-83-11234, taken from inside either the LEM or the Command module, no one’s really sure about that. And no one’s talking.

No one knows just what this image shows, (except the crew and NASA), but I have a feeling that this was an exceptionally intense encounter with something quite terrifying and almost completely inexplicable.

Learn what’s known of this exceptionally bizarre incident by reading my earlier post about this strange encounter, which has some great commentary from LunaCognita providing even more vital information.

Enhancement by yours truly back in April 2010, using a 9 layer image stack to get the most detail out of those freaky deaky streamers.

Share this previously classified image with the world while treating your iPad to some serious Speck protection.

Catch all my designs at High Strangeness Art.

A word about the case itself…

Combining luxury with uncompromised protection, this sleek hard plastic case is covered with an easy-to-grip fabric, richly printed with your favorite design. The first of its kind to be offered anywhere, this lightweight and durable custom case allows optimal access to all of the sensors, ports and controls on your iPad, while offering superior comfort in-hand.

eeasynow — May 12, 2010 — TSIOLKOVSKY’S SECRET http://www.boomslanger.com/apollo15.htm http://www.thelivingmoon.com/45jack_f…

I have seen this footage before and thought it most interesting. Featured from the beginning for a good while is the crater Tsiolkovsky, a geologically “young” crater that has inspired many for a long time.

This video is Apollo 17 Lunar Farside by Easynow of Pegasus and ATS.

There are a couple of researchers, including the inimitable John Lear, who feel strongly that that admittedly interesting mountain in the center(ish) of this crater, is in reality none other than the dirt-covered and parked tow vehicle that the Old Ones used when they put dear Luna in her place. Luna in this scenario is our Moon… as described in the reasonably popular Moon as an artificial body theory.

Apparently this occurred around 10 or 12,000 years ago. Many ancient cultures have accounts from a time when there was no Moon in the sky.

Thing is, though, that a lot of the natural processes on Earth are based on what the Moon’s up to; and those processes have to have taken quite a long time to get going and then develop, surely a lot longer than 12,000 years.

So, unless that “common knowledge” is somehow terribly wrong, how could there have been no Moon? But then again, a lot of respect and heed should be, I feel, given to the accounts of the ancients.

But, hey, dogma be damned, right? Yeah, that’s the spirit!

There are an amazing amount of strange things going on with the moon. Rare is the place that has even a tenth the number of oddities associated with it as our nearest neighbor.

I’m not at all sure what, but something… something… is just not quite right with our Moon. And there is a seriously strong desire in my heart to find out just what that something is.

Those two links up there are a great place to start if you want to dig into the Moon… that regolith’s good stuff!

Well, it’s three in the morning, I have no idea where my wallet is and a fear’s welling up something fierce… more coffee maybe, some comfort food maybe… oh, man… wherewhere?!

Apollo 17 Lunar Farside

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Strange. Very strange.

And disconcerting.

Disappointing, too.

Then again it is NASA. A rather bizarre organization, NASA.

You see, this post was initially inspired by my running across an interesting page at Lunar Explorer Italia last night titled  AS 15-83-11218 and the Stephenville UFO: a VERY SMART image-comparison (by Carlo Contu). As you no doubt have gathered from said title, Mr. Contu noticed that the Apollo image in question and the sportiest image of the infamous Stephenville, Texas UFO are remarkably similar. You know the one, the pretty rainbow colored squiggly line in the night sky…

So I Googled up the image number, all set to do a session in Photoshop. But it wasn’t available nice and large at  NASA History’s Apollo Image Library… in fact they don’t even list the magazine as existing at all! What’s up with that? Note that they do list magazines for which they have no pictures to show yet… so, why not 83?

All was not lost, as they are all shown on the Lunar and Planetary Institute’s Apollo Image Atlas… but the images at LPI are all small, all at low resolution and none are really suitable for delving into in hopes of doing any sort of confident analysis. Some clues came out, though…

Here’s the text at the LPI page for this magazine:

Apollo Image Atlas

70mm Hasselblad Image Catalog

Apollo 15, Magazine ??

Images AS15-83-11218 to AS15-83-11234

Why does it say “Magazine ??”? Huh? What was that? Note, of course, that right below that line, in the picture range it clearly states  AS15-83-xxx to AS15-83-xxx. 83, again, is the magazine number.

Ah, I see, when you go to the individual photos it lists right below them their confusion’s source, they don’t know the Letter sub-designation of magazine 83. Well, why not? And even so does not knowing the letter therefore qualify it’s contents for near oblivion, displayed small and low-res on a sub-site for the Apollo program?

Note: For those not familiar with magazines, they are a removable part of the Hasselblad camera, a film holding ‘magazine,’  pre-loaded with film that eliminates the need to string the film through the camera as in a standard 35mm camera. They just snap on and off the back.

Note, too, that 83 was not the first magazine used by the Apollo 15 crew, so although there seems to be some sort of labeling error, I don’t imagine that there were any other issues with it. The Image Atlas starts at 82… which naturally makes me wonder about the existence of 1 through 81, but that’s not completely relevant here. The ones they do show are otherwise sequential in content.

As you can see below, the images captured are intriguing… to say the least… especially the last one, the swoopy, streaky and oh so freaky AS15-83-11234.

What do they show? I can’t say as I know. I can speculate as well as you can, but unless the impossible happens and the crew of 15 give us a play-by-play description, speculation is all we’ve got. Another thing to speculate about is why are there only 17 pictures? Why did they stop snapping? Must see if I can find anything in the transcripts, but, I rather doubt that if there was anything exciting going on it’d still be within them.

I really do like that last one… what the hell is all that? It’s absolutely fascinating. Was there an encounter with something, something we can barely comprehend, way out there in the cold, vast darkness of space?

Hmmm?

Ah, great, here’s the new vid from LunaCognita that looks into more of the footage shot during the Apollo missions. I posted a bit about the trailer for it a little while ago on this blog.

Actually, I’m holding out hope that this is only a part of a bigger picture… there’s some cool anomaly shots in it to be sure… including a truly inexplicable boomerang shaped thing… you’ll see… but my thirst for more and more weirdness is strong; and the second half presents a visual representation of the results of frame stacking, as explained more below.

Frame stacking is an old technique that can produce some seriously spectacular results unachievable by any other method… it is very commonly used by the astronomical community and professional photographers and photographic printers alike in a process called HDR, or High Dynamic Range photography. That’s printers as in people, not machines, by the way.

A very handy link was found at NASA’s History site in a section on Apollo 12’s approach and landing by Easynow over at ATS… it goes into some detail, with pics, about the DAC camera and its mountings, view angles and other good stuff… please do check it out, it’s pretty cool.

NASA’s Apollo Coverup – A Forensic Look At The 16mm DAC Film Footage

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LunaCognita
March 16, 2010

In this presentation, we will focus on taking a closer look at several interesting segments of film footage from the NASA archives. All the footage shown and analyzed here was originally shot by NASA astronauts during the Apollo missions (1968-1972) on 16mm film, using what was known as the “Data Acquisition Camera” – the “DAC”.

The Maurer “DAC” cameras were modified variable frame rate 16mm motion picture film cameras used by the various Apollo crews throughout their missions to film scenes of interest through the windows of the spacecraft, interior spacecraft activities, as well as to shoot exterior footage during lunar surface “moonwalk” operations and Low-Earth Orbit or Trans-Earth-Coast EVA ops in cis-lunar space.

I included a bit more information on the Apollo DAC camera in the brief writeup I did attached to the earlier teaser/trailer video for this presentation – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uo81LM…

FRAME-STACKING
In the last half of this presentation (starting at 4:30), I show various examples where I employ an enhancement technique known as “frame-stacking” against the raw DAC archive footage. In certain cases, frame-stacking can be employed to forensically attack the raw frames of film and produce an enhanced composite still-frame of a stable (or motion-stabilized) scene. It should be noted that “stacking” is by no means a new method of enhancing video or motion picture film footage. It is a digital enhancement technique that has been around a lot longer than most people would probably believe, and in many cases it can provide us an improved look at some of the deeper image detail that is actually buried beneath the random “noise” in the raw footage.

Frame-stacking exploits the fact that the DAC footage, like any motion picture camera or digital video footage, is comprised of many sequential still images shown in rapid succession to simulate the appearance of motion to the viewer’s eye. If the raw footage is providing us with a stable (or motion-stabilized) scene that has no or little movement in the field-of-view, it might appear that the scene is comprised of many individual photographs that all seem to capture the identical view. However, appearances can be deceiving, and the truth is that each of those individual frames making up the raw film footage have slight variances between them, with each one suffering from its own unique random noise artifacts. “Stacking” works by analyzing and comparing all the raw frames that make up a segment of footage, allowing for the detection and subtraction of random noise artifacting from each individual raw frame. Those individual cleaned frames are then stacked together in order to construct a high-resolution composite image of the captured scene.

The first two examples I show in the frame-stacking segment were included merely to demonstrate the effectiveness of this enhancement technique when employed against raw archive footage of a known object – in this case, an Apollo Lunar Module. The first example is film footage from Apollo 9 taken in low-Earth orbit with an automatic 16mm DAC camera mounted to the open hatch of the CSM aiming “up” towards the Lunar Module (which was docked to the nose of the CSM at the time). Astronaut Rusty Schweickhart (LMP) can be seen standing on the porch of the LM, where he was conducting an EVA to test and verify the performance of the Apollo A7-L spacesuit and PLSS life support pack. A magnified split-screen closeup of the LM’s Rendevzous Radar Antenna allows for a direct comparative analysis of the raw footage versus the “stacked” enhancement as an example to demonstrate the improvements in clarity that can be gained.

The second demonstration example is not actually DAC footage, but rather is television footage from the Apollo 15 mission showing the LM “Falcon” sitting on the lunar surface, taken with the tripod-mounted GCTA-TV camera. I chose this example of raw GCTA-TV footage because it clearly suffers from rather severe noise issues, providing another good demonstration of the enhancement potential that frame-stacking can offer. As you can plainly see in both the DAC and GCTA-TV examples showing the LM, the stack enhancements offer considerable improvement in image clarity, allowing us to extract detail that in some cases may appear to not even be detectable when viewing the raw footage.

This presentation here is just the first part of a multi-part series focusing on the truth (and the lies) in the Apollo DAC footage. Hope you enjoy, and stay tuned for more to come!

Cheers,
LunaCognita

Keep them coming, LC, we be diggin’ it…