May 25th, 2015

Emily Lakdawalla's dive into the latest batch of images from the Cassini probe inspired her to generate a magnificent panorama across Saturn's rings (scroll down to the foot of the article.)

Saturn's rings (excerpt)

(For the record, this preview of one tiny segment doesn't begin to capture the scale or impact of the full image. Click on the preview if you doubt me…)

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The view was worth the trip

April 19th, 2015

APOD: 2015 April 13 – Milky Way over Erupting Volcano.

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The Milky Way over the Seven Strong Men Rock Formations

February 1st, 2015

APOD: 2015 January 26 – The Milky Way over the Seven Strong Men Rock Formations. Pretty epic.

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Gigantic rings

January 26th, 2015

Staying on the theme of what a big universe it is, astronomers think they've spotted a planet with a seriously big ring system:

"The star is much too far away to observe the rings directly, but we could make a detailed model based on the rapid brightness variations in the star light passing through the ring system. If we could replace Saturn's rings with the rings around J1407b, they would be easily visible at night and be many times larger than the full moon."

Big rings

[Via More Words, Deeper Hole]

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Replacement stars

January 26th, 2015

If the Sun were replaced by some other stars.

Be sure to watch to the end when we get to see Polaris up close. It's a hell of a thing.

[Via kottke.org]

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I call it the Moonbase Alpha treatment

January 13th, 2015

Super Planet Crash is a solar system simulator game that just proved what an asshole I'd be if I was in charge of the universe. There I was with my 10-planet system, chugging along nicely past the 300-year mark and I got bored and added a brown dwarf to the inner solar system.

The result:

Bye bye, Planet 10

Oh well, how many Earth-sized planets does a solar system need, really? Besides, just think how much more of the universe the inhabitants of Planet 10 will see this way (until the atmosphere freezes as they wander the interstellar depths.)

[Via APOD]

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Crescent Rhea Occults Crescent Saturn

January 7th, 2015

APOD: 2015 January 4 – Crescent Rhea Occults Crescent Saturn.

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Blackout City

December 7th, 2014

Blackout City by Nicholas Buer:

In a metropolis like London light pollution makes the night sky invisible. Only a few of the brightest stars and asterisms force their celestial light through the man made glow of the city. The night sky, one of the most beautiful of natural wonders is extinguished from view. Blackout City is an experimental timelapse film that makes the invisible, visible. It attempts to show what the night sky would look like If there were ever to be a total blackout in the South East of England on a clear, moonless, summer's night.

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November 30th, 2014

Wanderers, or, Life in the Solar System. Someday.1

[Via Sidelights]

  1. Not soon.

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An extraordinarily large ring of fire

September 1st, 2014

The situation could technically be labeled a Mercurian annular eclipse with an extraordinarily large ring of fire.

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