Twinkle Twinkle Little Star: BGP's Astronomy Thread

Page 5 of I'm sure there are several astronomy enthusiasts here, besides TB&G and myself. I can't get enough of astronomy and I never get tired of learning n... 114 comments | 2017 Views | Go to page 1 →

  1. #61
    mcpapa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Science Friction View Post
    Only 8 Venus transits since the invention of the telescope... Hope you saw the one in '04 or '12 .
    I was just a wee shaver for the 1882 transit.





    Just kidding.
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  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcpapa View Post
    I was just a wee shaver for the 1882 transit.





    Just kidding.
    I figured you would have been a little young in '82 to have remembered that one.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Science Friction View Post
    Only 8 Venus transits since the invention of the telescope... Hope you saw the one in '04 or '12 .
    I saw both. In 2012 I was with my nieces and nephew and I was able to show them. Cool memories!

  4. #64
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    While I am still blogging about transits, how about a rare triple play involving our Jovian giant and three of its moons---Io, Callisto, and Europa. This one occurred in 2015.

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  5. #65
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    The first Transit I ever witnessed :





    Sorry about that. I couldn't resist.

    Mercury Transit / May, 2016:

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  6. #66
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    In the day or two, I'm gonna talk to you a little about what you see in the pic below. Many of you may not realize it but civilization as we know it today almost came to an end five years ago. Stay tuned...

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  7. #67
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    Always thought Giant Red Spot was interesting. Heard this morning it'll take NASA 7-10 days to analyse the data from the July 10 fly over. Will you please keep us updated @Science Friction ?

    NASA's Juno Spacecraft to Fly Over Jupiter's Great Red Spot July 1 | NASA
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    https://www.forbes.com/sites/startsw.../#4e8d7a704abe

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Runcible Owl View Post
    Always thought Giant Red Spot was interesting. Heard this morning it'll take NASA 7-10 days to analyse the data from the July 10 fly over. Will you please keep us updated @Science Friction ?

    NASA's Juno Spacecraft to Fly Over Jupiter's Great Red Spot July 1 | NASA
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    https://www.forbes.com/sites/startsw.../#4e8d7a704abe

    Sure will, Owl. I appreciate your interest and thanks for reading.
    Btw, I agree with you about the Jovian Giant's Red Spot. A storm with winds of 400 mph that's been raging for at least 150 years and possibly for 400 years or more is one dilly of a storm.

  9. #69
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    Okay, back to the pic in my post #66.

    July 23, 2012: A day that came ever so close to living in infamy. You didn't see it, you didn't feel it, you probably didn't even read about it in the paper. But what took place came very close to wiping out civilization as we know it and plunging us back into the 18th century, at best. No, this is not some astronomy geek musing melodramatically about some far out science fiction event.

    What happened five years ago this month that almost brought utter chaos upon the earth??? No, it wasn't a North Korean dictator with his finger on nukes, not an asteroid like the one that wiped out the dinosaurs, not a newly discovered rogue comet, no pole shift... none of that. It happened on our very own Sun, the ball of gases that sits at the center of our solar system, keeps us warm, and gives us life.

    On July 23 five years ago, our sun let loose a massive eruption, one of the largest solar flares and coronal mass ejections ever recorded.(See pic in post #66) This solar storm started out with the massive flare and was followed by a colossal CME(Coronal Mass Ejection).

    A solar flare is initiated by the sudden release of energy stored in the Sun’s corona, causing the Sun’s plasma to heat up to tens of millions of degrees, accelerating and kicking out all sorts of radiation, and often creating a solar prominence or filament (eruption). In a large solar storm, the same energy from the corona can also cause a coronal mass ejection — a much slower-moving billion-ton cloud of plasma (electrons and protons).

    Do I need to tell you how bad of a day it would be if the energy and plasma from a gigantic CME hits Earth??? Well, let's just say, REALLY REALLY BAD !!! And folks, it almost happened. Had the solar storm and subsequent CME occurred just one week earlier the earth would have been in the direct line of fire !!! When the energy and plasma from a massive CME strikes , the solar energetic particles strike the Earth with such force that it ionizes the atmosphere, creating a vast cloud of energetic electrons that bounce around inside the atmosphere destroying electronics and fusing conductive wires everywhere. It would probably take out a few satellites in Earth orbit, too.

    Prior to the storm five years ago, the next largest solar storm occurred back in 1859 and is known by folks like me in the scientific community as the Carrington Event. The 2012 storm was at the very least on the scale of Carrington. The Carrington storm vanquished much of the Victorian telegraph network in Europe as well as North America. Consequences of a storm like the one in 2012 would be much more dire than Carrington. Econmically speaking, well in excess of 20 trillion dollars for starters. But that's just the beginning of the nightmare. Civilization would be changed and it would take a long, long time to recover. We would have been forced back into living like those in colonial times, at best. At worst, an anarchic post-apocalyptic Stone Age might have confronted us. Large parts of society would have been without power for years. Yes, I said years!!! The world's power grids just can't be replaced overnight.

    I remember reading about one scientist who had studied extreme space weather events for decades saying that there is a 12% probability of a solar storm on the order of the 1859 Carrington Event before 2022. Stock up Doomsday Preppers!!!

    I'm always trying to find a positive in the most nightmarish of scenarios. One positive: I may not be able to take a warm bath or go to a Reds game but dammit the Northern Lights will be something else!!!!

  10. #70
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    The Sun was very angry and very active in 2012. Below is an image of a massive CME captured by the Solar Dynamics Observatory from when the Sun erupted on Aug. 31, about a month after the storm I spoke of above. This one sent a billion-ton cloud of charged particles racing through space at 3.2 million mph. The Earth's magnetosphere caught a glancing blow and made for a stargazer's delight in the higher latitudes with some spectacular Northern Lights.


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    Northern Lights over Finland four days after the CME left the sun:

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    Last edited by Science Friction; Jul 11, 17 at 04:07 PM.

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    Props to @Jim Schue for posting this in the "Break Room" forum, titled 'What football will look like in the future.' Hope you don't mind me ripping it to post here Jim.

    Please read, Chapter 1: Please answer me. You're in for a long, long ride.

    What football will look like in the future

    Thank you, Jim!
    Last edited by Runcible Owl; Jul 11, 17 at 10:49 PM.

  12. #72
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    Did anyone notice the moon last night? I was out at 11:30 observing it. Low in the sky, huge , and bright. Spectacular !!!!
    Last night, it was in the waning Gibbous Phase w/ 95% illumination. Gorgeous Moon!!! This month's full moon is called Thunder Moon.


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    Last edited by Science Friction; Jul 12, 17 at 03:18 PM.

  13. #73
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    Thunder Moon/ Greenville, NC . Three nights ago.

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    Saudi Arabia:

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    California Thunder Moon three nights ago. Reddish appearance is due to a fire southeast of where the pic was shot.

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  14. #74
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    This month's full Thunder Moon occurred at 12:07 EDT on July 9 . I hope your skies were clear and you were able to enjoy it. The Thunder Moon dominated the sky , alongside Saturn. The nearly full moon rose about four hours before reaching maximum fullness just after midnight.

    The traditional full moon names, like Thunder Moon, reflect the seasons in many temperate Northern Hemisphere climates. In many parts of the continental U.S., thunderstorms are more frequent in July as the weather heats up, so Thunder Moon was an apt name for some Native American cultures.

    However, there has always been a lot of variation in the associations made by different Native American tribes. Another name for the July full moon is Buck Moon, for the period when the antlers on deer start growing. Natives in the Pacific Northwest used "Salmon Moon" for this moon.

    Given that crops start to ripen in July as well, it's no surprise that the Cherokee called it the Ripe Corn Moon, or that among European colonists it was called the Hay Moon. Europeans had another name for the July full moon: Mead Moon, because it appeared at the same time as larger honey yields.


    Regardless of what you choose to call it, I hope you enjoyed the big ole Thunder Moon the past few nights!!!!!

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    37 days until eclipse day. I really want to encourage everyone to try and live the experience of this eclipse. Don't focus just on sun and moon and the interplay between them but look around you, engage all of your senses, pay close attention to all that is happening around you from first phase to the end of the eclipse. In order to assist you in knowing what to look for and what you will want to experience, I'll be posting some tips soon. Stay tuned...

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