Friday, February 23, 2007
Dust makes this cosmic eye look red. The eerie Spitzer Space Telescope image shows infrared radiation from the well-studied Helix Nebula (NGC 7293) a mere 700 light-years away in the constellation Aquarius. The two light-year diameter shroud of dust and gas around a central white dwarf has long been considered an excellent example of a planetary nebula, representing the final stages in the evolution of a sun-like star. But the Spitzer data show the nebula's central star itself is immersed in a surprisingly bright infrared glow. Models suggest the glow is produced by a dust debris disk. Even though the nebular material was ejected from the star many thousands of years ago, the close-in dust could be generated by collisions in a reservoir of objects analogous to our own solar system's Kuiper Belt or cometary Oort cloud. Formed in the distant planetary system, the comet-like bodies have otherwise survived even the dramatic late stages of the star's evolution.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Saturday, February 10, 2007
Snow and motorsport.
The Swedish Rally is underway:
The Swedish Rally is underway:
Gronholm leads in snowy conditionsPast winners.
Favourite Marcus Gronholm holds the lead after today’s first leg of the Uddeholm Swedish Rally, setting three fastest stage times in his Ford Focus.
But the Finn has less than a dozen seconds up on his regular main rival Sébastien Loeb, while Petter Solberg is a further eleven seconds behind. Solberg took the early morning lead in snowy conditions and it was only on the fourth stage today that Gronholm managed to move ahead and gradually open a lead. Moving ahead after his mishap on yesterdays’s Super Special Stage, when he stalled the Citroën engine, Loeb caught everyone except Gronholm to end the day in second place. ...continue reading
Explanation: Sometimes the sky itself is the best show in town. On January 26, people from Perth, Australia gathered on a local beach to watch a sky light up with delights near and far. Nearby, fireworks exploded as part of Australia Day celebrations. On the far right, lightning from a thunderstorm flashed in the distance. Near the image center, though, seen through clouds, was the most unusual sight of all: Comet McNaught. The photogenic comet was so bright that it even remained visible though the din of Earthly flashes. Comet McNaught continues to move out from the Sun and dim, but should remain visible in southern kies with binoculars through the end of this month. The above image is actually a three photograph panorama digitally processed to reduce red reflections from the exploding firework.NASA APOD
Thursday, February 01, 2007
7 NOVA teachers arrested for possessing cannabis, cocaineWhat were they thinking!? I can see another batch of US first-tier stars coming over to do a few new NOVA commercials and swoosh there goes its mend.
Seven foreign teachers working at the NOVA English language conversation school have been arrested on suspicion of violating a law on illegal drugs and the Cannabis Control Law, police said Wednesday.
Police accuse the seven of possessing five bags containing a total of about 1.5 grams of powdered cocaine, and 15 bags containing a total of about 8.2 grams of cannabis, on a street in Tokyo's Roppongi district on Nov. 19 last year.
Investigators said a 32-year-old American teacher who was arrested on the spot on the same day told police another NOVA teacher had made a request for the drugs. The 32-year-old said the drugs were purchased from a street dealer.
Six other suspects later surfaced, including a 35-year-old teacher from Canada who was working at the same classroom in Saitama Prefecture, police said. (Mainichi)