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Astronomical sightings thread

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On 6/23/2019 at 6:44 PM, falcon45ca said:

How can you disagree?

 

What mo'&^@#in planet has an elliptical orbit? 

It's not about elliptical orbit. It's about the size of the planet that makes it classified as a "dwarf planet".

 

Technically all planets have elliptical orbits due to gravity. They aren't circular. Much like how earth isn't a perfect sphere also due to gravity.

Edited by The Lock

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Just now, The Lock said:

It's not about elliptical orbit. It's about the size of the planet that makes it classified as a "dwarf planet".

 

Technically all planets have elliptical orbits due to gravity. They aren't circular. Much like how earth isn't a perfect sphere also due to gravity.

There are many factors that play into the "downsizing" of Pluto's planet status, and yes it's highly elliptical orbit did play a factor.

 

For crying out loud there are times it's closer to the sun than Venus

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On 6/19/2019 at 7:26 AM, nucklehead said:

well I strongly disagree, as do many others. that's point lol

I wrote a kids book about it ...should get it pulbished

The problem with Pluto being a planet is that, if Pluto is a planet, then we likely have 100's, possibly 1000's of planets orbiting the sun. Pluto is considered to be of the same materials of the other objects in the Kuiper Belt; therefore, it is classified as such.

 

Not only that, but if Pluto is to be classified as a planet, I could argue that it shouldn't be the 9th planet but the 10th planet. Ceres is a round dwarf planet in the asteroid belt not that much smaller than Pluto.

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1 minute ago, falcon45ca said:

There are many factors that play into the "downsizing" of Pluto's planet status, and yes it's highly elliptical orbit did play a factor.

 

For crying out loud there are times it's closer to the sun than Venus

Where did you read that Pluto's been closer to the sun than Venus? Can you provide proof of this? It can get closer than Nepture, but Venus seemed extremely far fetched.

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Just now, The Lock said:

Where did you read that Pluto's been closer to the sun than Venus? Can you provide proof of this? It can get closer than Nepture, but Venus seemed extremely far fetched.

Perhaps I've mixed the 2 up, my head been up my anus for some time now

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1 minute ago, falcon45ca said:

Perhaps I've mixed the 2 up, my head been up my anus for some time now

You should get that checked out. Your axis might be tilted on it's side.

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27 minutes ago, falcon45ca said:

Perhaps I've mixed the 2 up, my head been up my anus for some time now

We refer to that as your Perigee

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Just now, The Lock said:

You should get that checked out. Your axis might be tilted on it's side.

I like to think it's in retrograde 

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There's a free app called star tracker that let's you figure out where stuff is (planets, constellations, etc.)

 

Even in the city you can see the planets pretty good with a cheap telescope. Not a big challenge to see the rings of saturn or the four gallien moons around Jupiter. I have gotten good enough resolution on Jupiter on very cheap $120 telescope like....

 

https://www.bestbuy.ca/en-ca/product/celestron-celestron-explorascope-70az-telescope-22101/10450224

 

(And that's just me finding a model. You can probably get it cheaper on sale.

 

In fact even with binoculars you might be able to see the moon of Jupiter right now.

 

You don't even need anything better than that to see some of the galaxies. In fact they are very big and you only use the lowest maginification to see them. But you need it to be very dark. Alas, right now, there's nowhere in Western Canada that gets dark enough right now, or even for a while. Check out timeanddate.com to figure out whether your still dealing with twilight that makes it hard to see stuff like that. (You can only see some planets, specifically Venus and Mercury, during twilight). So planets are pretty easy (up to Saturn, you might luck into finding Neptune, but it will just be a blue dot).

 

It's fun zooming into the moon just to see how fast it really is moving! (Don't both pointing out the obvious know it alls...)

 

Happy hunting!

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14 hours ago, ronthecivil said:

There's a free app called star tracker that let's you figure out where stuff is (planets, constellations, etc.)

 

Even in the city you can see the planets pretty good with a cheap telescope. Not a big challenge to see the rings of saturn or the four gallien moons around Jupiter. I have gotten good enough resolution on Jupiter on very cheap $120 telescope like....

 

https://www.bestbuy.ca/en-ca/product/celestron-celestron-explorascope-70az-telescope-22101/10450224

 

(And that's just me finding a model. You can probably get it cheaper on sale.

 

In fact even with binoculars you might be able to see the moon of Jupiter right now.

 

You don't even need anything better than that to see some of the galaxies. In fact they are very big and you only use the lowest maginification to see them. But you need it to be very dark. Alas, right now, there's nowhere in Western Canada that gets dark enough right now, or even for a while. Check out timeanddate.com to figure out whether your still dealing with twilight that makes it hard to see stuff like that. (You can only see some planets, specifically Venus and Mercury, during twilight). So planets are pretty easy (up to Saturn, you might luck into finding Neptune, but it will just be a blue dot).

 

It's fun zooming into the moon just to see how fast it really is moving! (Don't both pointing out the obvious know it alls...)

 

Happy hunting!

I despise Best Buy, but I didn't want to keep that to keep me from plussing you :) 

 

I remember seeing the moons of Jupiter with binocs years ago, was fun.

 

Good info, thanks for sharing!!

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Speaking of too close to the sun....

Doesn't Mercury's orbit have a time dilation? that's some neat stuff right there. 

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8 hours ago, bishopshodan said:

Speaking of too close to the sun....

Doesn't Mercury's orbit have a time dilation? that's some neat stuff right there. 

From what I understand, for that to happen the sun would have to be much more massive like a black hole. I can't say I'm an expert on that though.

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54 minutes ago, The Lock said:

From what I understand, for that to happen the sun would have to be much more massive like a black hole. I can't say I'm an expert on that though.

I googled it when I saw Bishop's post, and it looks like it is true, but barely noticeable.  Still kinda cool.

 

Maybe the Voyage Home is a possibility ::D

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Tonight, 10/3, an hour after sunset for best visibility, the moon and Jupiter are having a conjunction.  They were reasonable close last month, but this one is much better!

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Super cool

Just don't get too close

 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/betelgeuse-dimming-1.5407038

 

 

Quote

 

Astronomers are wondering whether Orion's shoulder will soon explode

When Betelgeuse does eventually go supernova, the brightness will rival a full moon

Nicole Mortillaro · CBC News · Posted: Dec 24, 2019 4:00 AM ET | Last Updated: 6 hours ago
 
digitized-sky-survey-image-of-betelgeuse
This image is a colour composite made from exposures from the Digitized Sky Survey 2 (DSS2). The field of view is approximately 2.0 x 1.5 degrees. (ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2. Ackn)
 

The dramatic dimming of a giant star has astronomers wondering whether it's getting ready to explode. 

Betelgeuse — the red shoulder on the left side in the constellation Orion — has dimmed by a factor of about two since October, a change that has never been documented before.

 

"We know that it's the dimmest it's been observed ever, based on the data we have," said Stella Kafka, chief executive officer of the American Association of Variable Star Observers

 
betelgeuse-orion.jpg

What makes this development particularly intriguing to astronomers is that the star is slated to explode in spectacular fashion: a supernova. Astronomers estimate this will happen relatively soon — in astronomical terms anyway. It could be today, tomorrow or 100,000 years from now.

And when Betelgeuse goes supernova, astronomers estimate it will be as bright as the full moon and visible even during the day.

 

Orion rising on Dec 21 with apparently a dimmer #Betelgeuse at top centre as the red supergiant undergoes one of its fading episodes. @universetoday @skyatnightmag @SkyNewsMagazine @SkyandTelescope @AstronomyMag @SPACEdotcom

View image on Twitter
 
 
 
 
 

The tricky thing is that, because Betelgeuse is a red supergiant cloaked in a cloud of dust and gas, it's difficult to accurately describe it.

It's believed to be anywhere between 425 to 650 light years away, with a mass roughly 10 times that of the sun. It is also huge — likely 1,400 times larger than the sun. If it sat where the sun does, it would swallow all the inner planets, including Earth, Mars and even Jupiter. It's also about 14,000 times more luminous than our comparatively small star.

But Betelgeuse is also a variable star, meaning its brightness rises and falls periodically. But we've never seen it like this.

"Maybe 300 years ago, Betelgeuse was dimmer than what we're observing now, but we don't have data," Kafka said. 

 
size-comparison-betelgeuse-and-the-sun.j
This image, made with the European Southern Observatory's Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) telescope, shows the red supergiant Betelgeuse — one of the largest known stars. If it were at the centre of our solar system, Betelgeuse would engulf Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars and even Jupiter. (ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/E. O’Gorm)  

So, does this dimming portend a potentially historic and magnificent explosion?

Maybe. Maybe not.

It's not quite clear why exactly Betelgeuse dims periodically, but one of the possibilities is that, like the sun, it has cooler and hotter parts. If one of those cooler parts swung into our line of sight, that could make it seem like the star had dimmed.

In 2018, Betelgeuse had a couple of dips in its brightness, Kafka said. What we're seeing now could be that same spot, or possibly another.

Plus, dimming isn't necessarily indicative of an impending explosion.

There's no telling what will happen next.

"I don't even know if that's the dimmest it's going to get. This is an event that has been evolving," Kafka said. "We're still in the middle of it. Well, we're still actually at the beginning of it. These kinds of massive stars move slowly. They take their sweet time."

A history of supernovas

Astronomers spot supernovas somewhat regularly, though in other galaxies.

The last one in our galaxy that may have been observed from Earth was Cassiopeia A in 1680. 

Astronomers estimate that supernovas occur in galaxies like ours once every 100 years or so, though that doesn't mean we will witness them all; they could be on the other side of the galaxy, for example, or hidden from view.

 
tech-neutron-star-x-ray.jpg
The supernova remnant Cassiopeia A as seen by the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. The blue dot in the centre of the image is identified as a young neutron star. (NASA/CXC/SAO; Optical: NASA/STScI; Infrared: NASA/JPL-Caltech/O. Krause)

A perfect example is a study published in 2008 that detected the remnant of a supernova in the Milky Way that was traced back roughly 140 years. It wasn't visible to the naked eye, as it lay close to the centre of the galaxy and was obscured by dust and gas.

So we may be due for one soon.

No mutants

Kafka said there's no need to panic: even if Betelgeuse were to explode, it wouldn't obliterate life on Earth or turn us into mutants, though we would notice the blow of radiation it would deliver.

"What I will tell you is that it will be super interesting," Kafka said.

"It will be an excellent opportunity to study a supernova in the making."

The star could explode in two ways, she said. Either in two beams from its poles, or with a spherical, symmetrical explosion in all directions. If we were in the way of the beam-type explosion — which we're not — or if Betelgeuse was a lot closer, we'd be in trouble.

But for now, you can carry on enjoying the holidays, if that's what you were planning.

"We're not going to die," Kafka said. "But if you're looking for an excuse to eat more this Christmas, go for it."

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

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https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/technology/something-appears-to-have-collided-with-the-milky-way-and-created-a-huge-wave-in-the-galactic-plane/ar-BBYItL2?li=AAggFp5

Quote

 

An enormous wave has been discovered in the Milky Way that may have formed as a result of a collision with a massive mystery object—potentially a clump of dark matter—scientists have said.

The "Radcliffe wave" was discovered using data from the European Space Agency's Gaia satellite. It had previously gone unnoticed because of its extreme size and our proximity to it. From Earth, the wave covers half the sky, making it difficult to see the whole structure. Details of the discovery are published in Nature.

Our galaxy is known as a spiral galaxy. It is largely a flat, rotating disk with arms that circle it. It is about 100,000 light years across, but only around 1,000 light years thick.

Researchers led by João Alves, from the Department of Astrophysics at the University of Vienna and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, were initially trying to map a structure known as the Gould's Belt. This is a large band of star-forming regions that the team was hoping to learn more about with Gaia—a mission to create a 3D map of the Milky Way.

In doing so, the team discovered that Gould's belt is "just a projection effect" of a far larger structure, Alves told Newsweek. "As you can imagine, I was very surprised," he said. The Radcliffe wave, they found, was one enormous, long filament. It stretches 9,000 light years in length and 400 in width. It was also found to go 500 light years above and below the mid plane of the galactic disk in a wave-like shape.

The wave, which is made up of interconnected stellar nurseries, is very close to the Milky Way. At its closest point, the Sun is just 500 light years from the wave. "The reason why we didn't realize the presence of this giant is that we didn't have the exquisite distance measurements we have today with Gaia and, I think because we are so close to the structure it's hard to see it."

 

Scientists don't know what this "massive object" is/was, but guesses range from Dark Matter to Tom Wilson.....

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