Astronomy Pictures
December 13, 2007 3:34 PM   Subscribe

Most of those were great. This one, however, shouldn't count.
posted by inconsequentialist at 3:40 PM on December 13, 2007

Always amazing, and the more you know, the bigger it gets out there.
Number seven is my number one.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 3:46 PM on December 13, 2007

I got dem ol' cosmic blues again.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:48 PM on December 13, 2007

Very, very cool.

I agree with inconsequentialist about the lightning storm. I see stuff like that every day during the season in the Thunderstorm capital of the world and, besides, it doesn't seem, you know...spacey enough.

The Hubble "embracing galaxies" shots, as well as the comet pics and the video of the eclipse, though--really, they were just amazing.

Thanks for the thread.
posted by misha at 3:49 PM on December 13, 2007

Nice. Thanks!
posted by Artw at 3:50 PM on December 13, 2007

That Sky Factory site has some amazing pics.
posted by QIbHom at 3:51 PM on December 13, 2007

Time to go eat a carton of ice cream in the closet again. It's a BIG universe.
posted by yhbc at 3:53 PM on December 13, 2007

This one, however, shouldn't count.

Because it doesn't load?
posted by hjo3 at 4:07 PM on December 13, 2007

Epic fail. Not a single one of those photos shows anything resembling "bad astronomy." Where are the skyfish? The paper-plate UFOs? The "that's no moon, that's your thumb on the lens" shots?

Every one of those images were a pean to the vast majesty of the cosmos. The blogger obviously isn't even trying.

posted by lekvar at 4:19 PM on December 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

OK, that was definitely "best of the web."
posted by localroger at 4:25 PM on December 13, 2007

Couldn't you just save this great link for a follow-up in someone else's astronomy post, homunculus?
posted by rooftop secrets at 4:29 PM on December 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

Fantastic. I somehow missed the whole "Black Hole on Mars" thing.

inconsequentialist: This one, however, shouldn't count.
Becasue it's too awesome? Actually, I see think I your point.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 4:35 PM on December 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

Actually, I see think I your point.
I'm not sure what just happened there. "Actually I think I see your point."
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 4:36 PM on December 13, 2007

Damnit, I need to start posting my bookmarks sooner. Thanks homunculus.
posted by loquacious at 4:48 PM on December 13, 2007

google ads on one of the links:

Meaning of Life Explained
A Plausible Theory for Our Universe Science Based and Logical
The Theory of Everything
Some physicists think the mind is at the heart of modern physics.
Lesbian Fiction At SCP
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huh? also. great link :)
posted by Dillonlikescookies at 4:54 PM on December 13, 2007 [2 favorites]

Space scares the shit out of me.
posted by puke & cry at 4:55 PM on December 13, 2007 [2 favorites]

That pit on Mars really gets my blood pumping. Now, when stupid people ask if all caves are underground, I can say, no, some are a good 36 million miles above ground!
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:05 PM on December 13, 2007

*dons space helmet and grabs keys for rocket*

Screw this, I'm gonna go see what they're doing in Andromeda.
posted by daq at 5:13 PM on December 13, 2007

Motherfucking snakes in a motherfucking cave on Mars!
posted by DenOfSizer at 5:13 PM on December 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

That move of the solar eclipse gave me goosebumps.
posted by pjern at 5:39 PM on December 13, 2007

Seconding solopsist! The eight-second YouTube clip is really, really awesome, once you realize it's footage, not a dumb special effect. It's the Moon passing in front of the Sun. Just craziness.
posted by cgc373 at 5:47 PM on December 13, 2007

Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:20 PM on December 13, 2007 [8 favorites]

I'm with you, Lekvar. Despite the name of the blog entry, "Top Ten Astronomy Pictures of 2007", I was irrationally expecting to see the worst ten astronomy pictures of 2007. I was very disappointed.

These pictures are cool too, though. It was just a bit like biting into an éclair thinking it was a corndog.
posted by ErWenn at 6:40 PM on December 13, 2007

Thanks for the post. Beautiful, awe-inspiring images. Space is the one reason I want to believe in reincarnation, 'cuz it doesn't look like I'm gonna make it out there this time around.
posted by trip and a half at 6:58 PM on December 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

Great pictures. Nice Adams, kirkaracha, but "Space isn't remote at all. It's only an hour's drive away if your car could go straight upwards."
posted by tellurian at 7:42 PM on December 13, 2007

What's so hard to understand, Dillon? The meaning of life is lesbians.

All. The. Way. Down.
posted by rokusan at 8:16 PM on December 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

You and me both, trip and a half. Thanks, homunculus, for linking to the stuff of dreams!
posted by Quietgal at 9:31 PM on December 13, 2007

posted by rtha at 9:46 PM on December 13, 2007

I want a planet situated just far enough over a spiral galaxy so that the view of the galaxy takes up about half the sky. I think that would be awesome. Any property agents having such properties are invited to email me.

Space boggles me. I have this possibly irrational idea that, no matter how far the distance, the very fact we can name that distance means there must be some way to traverse it in a meaningful amount of time. I refuse to take 'no' for an answer! The contrary is that the universe is a big tease.

But one thing I'd like to understand about photos of galaxies: How much of the visible image is glowing gas, and how much is the billions of stars? Or do we even know with any degree of certainty?
posted by Goofyy at 1:15 AM on December 14, 2007

Io is the next great vacation spot in case you missed it in the article. That's the one that really blew my mind.
posted by Skorgu at 4:26 AM on December 14, 2007

Goofyy, it's pretty much all stars. Gas that isn't being compressed to the point of fusion doesn't generally glow. I know, crazy, it's really like a gas made up of stars.
posted by localroger at 5:20 AM on December 14, 2007

My god, it's full of stars.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:50 AM on December 14, 2007

Great post and comments! Unfortunately the IT department here has crippled this computer in a way such that I cannot favorite anything, or else I would definitely be handing some out.
posted by TedW at 6:59 AM on December 14, 2007

Gravity twists and pulls at the galaxies as they dance past each other. And, as if they resist the inevitable recession of their partner, they reach out to one another in what looks like a tender embrace, but is in reality a stark (if lovely) portent of the destruction wrought on both galaxies. [the two galaxies] passed each other ... 200 million years ago. The gravity of B ... drew out a long tentacle from the much larger A ..., and it appears as if the passage also wrapped the tendril around B, perhaps more than once ... and we can (just barely) tell that B is looking a little disturbed. Will the two galaxies continue to separate, or will gravity eventually win, drawing them together? Perhaps the latter ... And while this may look like a totally alien tableau, keep in mind that the Milky Way Galaxy has suffered through such collisions in the past… and will again.

So have I, honey, so have I.

*bursts into tears*
posted by Koko at 7:37 AM on December 14, 2007

that was unbelievably neat.
posted by shmegegge at 8:24 AM on December 14, 2007

Galaxies seem like immutable giants of the cosmos; serene, majestic, and unmoving. But that’s an illusion. Everything in space is in motion, including galaxies. As you can imagine, when you take a collection of several hundred billion stars and set it in motion, it can be pretty hard to stop it. Galaxies move through space at numbing speeds, and the forces built up are mighty.

The next supervillain who uses toys like planet weapons will lose my respect immediately. Galactic weapons or nothing at all!

I also have this SF urge right now. And I'm not a man of SF, normally.
posted by ersatz at 8:46 AM on December 14, 2007

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