"The sun descending in the west, The evening star does shine;"
March 13, 2007 2:12 PM   Subscribe

Have you ever wondered what a solar eclipse would look like from space? The STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) has just sent back its view (awe-inspiring video included). It has also sent back some gorgeous pictures of our sun (and the McNaught Comet). For more media, check out the other galleries (including some 3D images). For more about the project, see NASA's STEREO homepage. Be sure to also stop by the Johns Hopkins University STEREO Page, where you can download a mission guide (pdf), view animations, watch a video of the launch, or even make your own papercraft STEREO model (pdf). You can also learn more in six minute segments with their series of short educational videos.
posted by wander (15 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
Sigh. "at NASA's STEREO homepage" should be "see NASA's STEREO homepage". Hooray for proofreading mistakes!

though it would be nice if someone could fix that
posted by wander at 2:19 PM on March 13, 2007

Great post. I had already seen the (literally awesome) eclipse footage, but nice job fleshing it out!
posted by brundlefly at 2:21 PM on March 13, 2007

That's a regular solar eclipse, not lunar one. A lunar eclipse is when the earth crosses in front of the sun.
posted by delmoi at 3:06 PM on March 13, 2007

Awe. I'm full of awe. It is good to be reminded how joyously glorious the universe is. Thank you, wander, for the post.
posted by Kattullus at 3:25 PM on March 13, 2007

Are 3D images the objective of this mission? Really? What extra data would this provide?
posted by pantsrobot at 3:28 PM on March 13, 2007

delmoi: dangit. I get them confused sometimes. Thanks for the correction. Now if I could just get a mod in here to fix this up...
posted by wander at 3:29 PM on March 13, 2007

Cool post. Incidently, here are some virtual 3D flyovers of Mars, from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (NS story).
posted by MetaMonkey at 4:50 PM on March 13, 2007

Where did you get the idea that 3D images were the objective?
posted by DU at 5:01 PM on March 13, 2007

It's clearly AN objective. I'm assuming the stereoscopic images would give scientists a clearer picture of all the loop-dee-loops in solar storms.
posted by brundlefly at 5:10 PM on March 13, 2007

DU: From the mission statement, and wikipedia-
STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) is a 2-year NASA mission employing two nearly identical space-based observatories to provide the very first, 3-D "stereo" images of the sun to study the nature of coronal mass ejections.
posted by pantsrobot at 5:25 PM on March 13, 2007

From the same link, it's clearly a) passive and b) (mostly) optical. So I assume that yes, the stereoscopic part is part of the mission, but not because of the pretty pictures. It's for the same reason humans (and many other animals) produce stereo images: More data, particularly range.
posted by DU at 6:05 PM on March 13, 2007

Okay. I contacted a mod and they have worked their secret mod magic. Thanks, cortex!
posted by wander at 6:18 PM on March 13, 2007

I think it's awesome. I actually just got through going through most of your post without having seen it (I guess we have similar taste) when I saw it.

Having stereo data would be good because ... well, if they do it right, they'll be able to know more about how the sun works. At the very least it will look cool in like VR goggles a few years ago.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 9:10 PM on March 13, 2007

Ooooooh. Nifty.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 11:31 PM on March 13, 2007

The sun is bad-ass. Where is the giant turtle though?
posted by Mister_A at 7:03 AM on March 14, 2007

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