The idea of a black hole–a body so massive that not even light could escape it–was first theorized back in 1784 by English clergyman John Michell. However, it wasn’t until 1915 when Albert Einstein developed his theory of general relativity that the momentum of black hole research would take shape. Black holes have fascinated not just scientists but also the general public. They have been the source of inspiration for numerous books, songs, movies, etc. But we’ve only been able to see them conceptualized via some form of animation. In fact, the idea of ever seeing one was deemed impossible. That is, until now.
This October, look for Pegasus, the great winged horse of Greek mythology, prancing across the autumn night sky. Binoculars and small telescopes will reveal the glowing nucleus and spiral arms of our neighbor, the Andromeda Galaxy. Don’t miss the Orionid meteor shower, which peaks on the night of October 21 to 22.
Find out more about what you can see from your backyard, front stoop, or local park by viewing this monthly program. “Tonight’s Sky” is produced by HubbleSite.org, online home of the Hubble Space Telescope.
Today, June 14, is Flag Day and here at the Louisiana Art & Science Museum we are home to a very special flag, donated to us by Congressman Richard H. Baker on April 22, 2002, to memorialize the events surrounding the September 11, 2001 bombing of the World Trade Center.
There is a belief that America spent millions of dollars developing a pen that could be used in space, while the Russians simply used pencils. It was a gripe aimed at American excess versus Russian sensibility.
It’s also not true.
Pablo Carlos Budassi recently unveiled a new illustration based on almost incomprehensible logarithmic maps created by Princeton University. It shows the entire known visible universe. Though it is not a true map, it should be considered a “visualization showing fields of view” of the entire observable universe.
A massive black hole releases sound waves in a deep bass pitch, astronomers have found. Researchers used NASA’s orbiting Chandra X-ray Observatory to “listen” to wavelengths coming from the heart of the Perseus A Cluster, a giant clump of galaxies 250 million light-years from Earth (A light-year is the distance light travels in a year in a vacuum, about 9.5 trillion kilometers.)
Many stars end their existence by going out in a huge explosion known as a supernova. However, only a few of these stellar explosions have been caught in the act. When they are, spotting them successfully has been down to pure luck—until now. On 11 December 2015 astronomers not only imaged a supernova in action, but saw it when and where they had predicted it would be.
Light travels at a speed of 186,282 miles per second. Jupiter is 483,737,000 miles from the Sun. In an effort to convey the vastness of space, Alphonse Swinehart created an animation to illustrate that even the fastest moving thing still takes over 43 minutes just to reach Jupiter.
In the past two blog postings we uncovered how some characters in the Harry Potter universe are tied to Greek, Roman, and Norse mythology. Not only are certain names shared, but the stories between the character and the myth from which its name is derived are actually intertwined. In the first blog posting we dealt mainly with two of Harry’s classmates: Draco and Luna. In the second blog posting we looked at two members of the family Black: Sirius and Bellatrix. Now it is time we took a closer look at one of Harry Potter’s fiercest enemies and one of his fiercest allies: Fenrir Greyback and Albus Dumbledore.