"Oh my God! Look at that picture over there! Here's the Earth coming up. Wow is that pretty!"
Soon after that pronouncement, 50 years ago today, one of the most famous images ever taken was snapped from the orbit of the Moon.
Now known as "Earthrise", the iconic image shows the Earth rising above the limb of the Moon, as taken by the crew of Apollo 8. But the well-known Earthrise image was actually the second image taken of the Earth rising above the lunar limb -- it was just the first in color.
With modern digital technology, however, the real first Earthrise image -- originally in black and white -- has now been remastered to have the combined resolution and color of the first three images. Behold!
The featured image is a close-up of the picture that Apollo 8 astronaut Bill Anders was talking about. Thanks to modern technology and human ingenuity, now we can all see it.
(Historical note: A different historic black & white image of the Earth setting behind the lunar limb was taken by the robotic Lunar Orbiter 1 two years earlier.)
For the second time in human history, a object has reached the space in between the stars, interstellar Space. The NASA's Voyager 2 probe now has left the heliosphere - the protective bubble of particles and magnetic fields created by our Sun.
Comparing data from different instruments aboard the trailblazing spacecraft, mission scientists determined the probe crossed the outer edge of the heliosphere on Nov. 5.
This boundary, called the heliopause, is where the tenuous, hot solar wind meets the cold, dense interstellar medium. Its twin, Voyager 1, crossed this boundary in 2012, but Voyager 2 carries a working instrument that will provide first-of-its-kind observations of the nature of this gateway into interstellar space.
Voyager 2 now is slightly more than 11 billion miles (18 billion kilometers) from Earth. Mission operators still can communicate with Voyager 2 as it enters this new phase of its journey, but information - moving at the speed of light - takes about 16.5 hours to travel from the spacecraft to Earth. By comparison, light traveling from the Sun takes about eight minutes to reach Earth.
Follow the Link below to see realtime updates about the 2 Voyagers:
As host of the new TV series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, astrophysicist and author Neil deGrasse Tyson is following in the footsteps of the late Carl Sagan, the renowned scientist who starred in Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, the classic 1980 program that powerfully influenced many people’s view of science and the universe. Oddly, Tyson, who was in graduate school at the time, recalls that he only had time to catch a few episodes of the original Cosmos when it originally aired. All the same, Sagan still managed to exert a profound personal influence upon his future Cosmos successor, thanks to a meeting between the two that occurred when Tyson was a teenager.
It happened back in December 1975, when Tyson, a senior from at the Bronx High School of Science who dreamed of becoming an astrophysicist, applied to Cornell University, and his application was forwarded to Sagan, a faculty member. To Tyson’s surprise, he soon received a personal reply. “It was completely surreal,” recalls Tyson. “I’m just a 17-year-old kid, and here’s the most famous scientist in the world—he’d been on Johnny Carson—inviting me to come visit him at his lab.” When Tyson took a bus from New York City to the Cornell campus in Ithaca, N.Y., and walked to the building where Sagan worked, he was even more startled to find the scientist waiting outside for him. After giving Tyson a tour of the lab, autographing one of his books and discussing the Viking Mars lander with him, Sagan gave Tyson a ride back to the bus station. “It had started snowing,” Tyson recalls. “He wrote his home phone number on a piece of paper and gave it to me, saying, ‘If the bus can’t get through, call me, and we’ll put you up for the night.’”
Read the rest of the story at: National Geographic Channel
Totally carved directly into vivid red, white, pink, along with sandstone cliff faces, the ancient Jordanian city of Petra was "lost" to the Western world for hundreds of years.
Located amongst rugged desert canyons and mountains in what is now the southwestern corner of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Petra was once a thriving trading center and the capital of the Nabataean empire between 400 B.C. and A.D. 106.
The city sat empty and in near ruin for centuries. Only in the early 1800s did a European traveler disguise himself in Bedouin costume and infiltrate the mysterious locale.
In 1985, the Petra Archaeological Park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site, and in 2007 it was named one of the new seven wonders of the world.
Indiana Jones Movie Location
Several scenes from the Hollywood blockbuster Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade were filmed in Petra. The movie's fictional Canyon of the Crescent Moon was modeled on the eastern entrance to Petra, a 250-foot-high (76-meter-high) sandstone slot canyon known as the Siq that leads directly to Al Khazneh (the Treasury)-perhaps the most stunning of Petra's dozens of breathtaking features.
In the film's climactic final scenes, actors Harrison Ford and Sean Connery burst forth from the Siq and walk deep into the labyrinths of the Treasury in their quest to find the Holy Grail. But, as usual, archaeological fact bowed to Hollywood fiction when Indy came to Petra.
In reality, the Treasury is nothing more than a facade with a relatively small hall once used as a royal tomb.
"You can't really say that anything in Indiana Jones is accurate," Haifa University archaeologist Ronny Reich said. "I was once asked in the United States if one of the responsibilities of Israeli archaeologists is to chase down Nazis. I told them, 'Not any more. Now we just chase down pretty women.'"
A giant urn carved above the entrance to the Treasury bears the marks of hundreds of gunshots. Bedouin tribesmen living in and among the ancient ruins say the damage was caused when local men would open fire with rifles, seeking the loot thought to be inside the urn (actually made of solid stone).
There are dozens of tombs and other carved or constructed structures and sites within Petra.
The Nabataeans, before they were conquered and absorbed into the Roman Empire, controlled a vast tract of the Middle East from modern-day Israel and Jordan into the northern Arabian peninsula. The remains of their innovative networks of water capture, storage, transport, and irrigation systems are found to this day throughout this area.
Scholars know the Nabataeans were in Petra since at least 312 B.C., says archaeologist Zeidoun Al-Muheisen of Jordan's Yarmouk University.
Al-Muheisen, who has been excavating in Petra since 1979 and specializes in the Nabataean period, says no one has yet found any archaeological evidence dating back to the fourth century B.C. The earliest findings thus far date back only to the second and first centuries B.C.
But more clues remain beneath the surface. "We have uncovered just 15 percent of the city," he says. "The vast majority-85 percent-is still underground and untouched."
Numerous scrolls in Greek and dating to the Byzantine period were discovered in an excavated church near the Winged Lion Temple in Petra in December 1993.
Researchers at the American Center of Oriental Research in Amman, the capital, are now analyzing the scrolls and hope they will shed light on life in Petra during this period.
Once Rome formally took possession of Petra in A.D. 106, its importance in international trade began to wane. The decay of the city continued, aided by earthquakes and the rise in importance of sea trade routes, and Petra reached its nadir near the close of the Byzantine Empire's rule, around A.D. 700.
Visitors today can see varying blends of Nabataean and Greco-Roman architectural styles in the city's tombs, many of which were looted by thieves and their treasures thus lost.
Today, local Bedouins selling tourist souvenirs hawk their wares not far from the place where Arabs believe Moses struck a rock with his staff, causing water to burst forth.
Italian governmental scientists now have claimed to discovered proof that a supernatural event produced the image on the Turin Shroud, presumed by many people to be the burial cloth of Jesus Christ.
After many years of work attempting to replicate the colouring on the shroud, a comparable image has been produced by the scientists.However, they only managed the effect by scorching comparable linen materials along with high-intensity ultra violet lasers, undermining the arguments of other research, they say, which claims the Turin Shroud is a medieval hoax. This kind of technology, say scientists from the National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (Enea), was in fact far beyond the capability of medieval forgers, whom most experts have attributed with making the famous relic.
"The results show that a short and intense burst of UV directional radiation can colour a linen cloth so as to reproduce many of the peculiar characteristics of the body image on the Shroud of Turin," they said.And in case there has been any doubt about the preternatural degree of energy necessary to make such distinct marks, the Enea report spells it out: "This degree of power cannot be reproduced by any normal UV source built to date."A statement by head investigator, Dr Paolo Di Lazzaro, stated: "If our results prompt a philosophical or theological debate, these conclusions we'll leave to the experts; to each person's own conscience,"he was quoted saying. Luigi Garlaschelli, a professor of chemistry at Pavia University, explained: "The implications are... that the image was formed by a burst of UV energy so intense it could only have been supernatural. However I don't think they've carried out anything of the sort."
Astronomers during the last American Astronomical Society conference said that a massive white dwarf star within the cycle of a multiple nova is substantially nearer to our own solar system in contrast to at one time thought. Whenever it actually does collapse into a type Ia supernova -- the resulting thermonuclear explosion will adversely affect life on the planet. Significantly.
The star is actually part of a binary starsystem a white dwarf that leaches mass off its sun-like neighbor called T Pyxidis, situated in the southern area of the constellation Pyxis, referred to as "The Compass Box." The system can be described as an recurrent nova since it has been subjected to frequent novas during the last century, suffering somewhat small thermonuclear explosions around 1890, 1902, 1920, 1944 and 1967, or just about every twenty years.
It is currently been over Four decades since that last nova in 1967, and in the mean time the white dwarf continues to swell, nourishing off its neighbor. If it carries on to swell, it might eventually reach the Chandrasekhar Limitation, a critical mass at which point immediate gravitational collapse will occur causing a thermonuclear blast comparable to 20 billion billion billion megatons of TNT.
Considering that scientist have recently found out that T Pyxidis is only 3,260 light-years away from us, a neighbor by cosmic standards and a lot closer than up until recently thought, that kind of epic explosion wouldn't be good for our stellar neighborhood. The Gamma radiation which would reach Our planet would be equal to 1,000 simultaneous solar flares bombarding planet earth. The resulting creation of nitrous oxides in the upper atmosphere would undoubtedly completely destroy the ozone, at which point it is safe to say the planet would be compleetly uninhabitable.
But the magnificent scale of the cosmos that allows these kinds of massive, cataclysmic events to unravel also bears a gold lining for anybody on Earth. Although in terms of star life a supernova is probably around the cosmic corner, it is believed to take place millions of earth years from today, a full 10 million years by some estimates. The reality is that we're to far away from T Pyxidis to really tell exactly how big it is or how quickly it is accreting mass. But the end of the world will not be coming tomorrow. Or even in a couple of years.
Excellent video interview about T Puxidis on bottom of page.
September 27, 2011
The Disclosure Petition
Washington, DC - Paradigm Research Group's Disclosure Petition on the White House website has achieved the necessary 5000 signatures for consideration by and response from the Obama administration. Signatures from around the world have been registered. The wording of this petition is as follows:
"We, the undersigned, strongly urge the President of the United States to formally acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence engaging the human race and immediately release into the public domain all files from all agencies and military services relevant to this phenomenon."
The Disclosure Petition is located at: http://wh.gov/gKC
Since 1992 hundreds of military and government agency witnesses have come forward with testimony confirming this extraterrestrial presence. Opinion polls now indicate more than 50% of the American people believe there is an extraterrestrial presence and more than 80% believe the government is not telling the truth about this phenomenon.
According to PRG executive director Stephen Bassett, "There is an international effort underway to generate as many signatures as possible behind the petition. This is a golden opportunity for the citizens of nations to affirm they DO have a right to know and CAN handle the truth."
Another referendum on this issue with over 4000 endorsements is ongoing at: www.worlddisclosureday.org
Contact: Stephen Bassett