Archive for February, 2011

The end of WISE in the infrared

Hi there,

It was only a short while ago (Dec 14 2009) that WISE was launched to scna the sky in infrared but now it has run out of coolant! It’s a bit sad really…

Feb. 17 – The WISE Spacecraft transmitter was turned off for the final time at 12:00 noon PST today (Feb 17). WISE Principal Investigator Ned Wright sent the last command. The Spacecraft will remain in hibernation without ground contacts awaiting possible future use.

http://wise.ssl.berkeley.edu/ Now it will probably be used for scanning nearby NEOs (Near Earth Objects) WISE has contributed significantly during it short life – and many great images have been seen by many – please also check out the NASA site as well:

blue star near the center of this image is Zeta Ophiuchi

The blue star near the center of this image is Zeta Ophiuchi. When seen in visible light it appears as a relatively dim red star surrounded by other dim stars and no dust. However, in this infrared …

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/WISE/main/index.html

WISE’s Last Light

WISE, took its last snapshot of the sky

On the morning of February 1, 2011, NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, took its last snapshot of the sky. This “last light” image is reminiscent of the “first light” image from …

Regards

Estelle

Planck’s version of the CIB

Planck’s version of the CIB is quite startling as well – as I am sure many of you have seen some of the photos by now, for there is more information as Planck looks through voids in the milky way to see deeper…

Planck

Every spot in these images of the sky represents a point of light seen by Planck. On the left are objects within our own Galaxy, while on the right are other galaxies. On the left, the Galactic sources are almost all in the disc of our Galaxy, which is seen edge-on from Earth and lies across the centre of the image. There are loops and wisps of gas and dust above and below the Galactic Plane, which are generally parts of the Galaxy much closer to Earth. On the right, the Extragalactic sources are distributed all over the sky, though they cannot be seen through the Galactic Plane due to the gas and dust within our own Galaxy. The large spots below-right of the centre are the Magellanic Clouds, which are nearby, small galaxies which orbit our own. The background image in each is the Planck full-sky map, and the size of the points represents how bright they are when seen by Planck. Image credit: ESA/Planck Collaboration.

http://www.kicc.cam.ac.uk/news/index.php?newsitem=Planck_first_Data.php&display=True

first six fields used to detect Cosmic Infrared

This image shows the location of the first six fields used to detect and study the Cosmic Infrared Background. The fields, named N1, AG, SP, LH2, Boötes 1 and Boötes 2, respectively, are all located at a relatively high galactic latitude, where the foreground contamination due to the Milky Way’s diffuse emission is less dramatic.

http://www.esa.int/esaCP/SEMK4D3SNIG_index_0.html

rho Ophiuchi as seen by Planck

One of the areas of the Galaxy where Planck has seen the anomalous microwave emission. Image credit: ESA/Planck consortium.

http://planck.cf.ac.uk/news/planck-unveils-wonders-universe

CIB taken by the Herschel Space Observatory

This week on JPL/Nasa, there is a pretty interesting article on THE COSMIC INFRARED BACKGROUND CIB with photos taken by the Herschel Space Observatory- this intrgiues me very much, as it is the infrared version of CMB – and well worth a read.

Herschel Measures Dark Matter for Star-Forming Galaxies

A region of the sky called the

A region of the sky called the “Lockman Hole,” located in the constellation of Ursa Major, is one of the areas surveyed in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. All of the little dots in this picture are distant galaxies. Image credit: ESA/Herschel/SPIRE/HerMES

http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2011-057&cid=release_2011-057&msource=h20110216&tr=y&auid=7790308

Exoplanets & Kepler

If you are interested in Exoplanets – then there are TWO good PDFs for free download from Nature this week – they are both must read documents:

Exoplanets on the cheap

The search for planets outside our Solar System will always be pricey. But creative solutions are proving that it no longer has to break the bank. Astronomers searching for planets around stars other than the Sun have had much to celebrate over the past decade. The number of confirmed ‘exoplanets’ has soared from about 50 to more than 500 in that time. And although none of these planets closely resembles Earth, NASA’s Kepler space telescope, launched in 2009, is now delivering candidates from distant stars by the hundreds — some of which may prove to be very Earth-like indeed

http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110202/pdf/470027a.pdf

The search for planets outside our Solar System will always be pricey. But creative solutions are proving that it no longer has to break the bank.

Lee Billings

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BEYOND THE STARS

Launched in 2009 to seek out worlds beyond the Solar System, the Kepler mission is exceeding expectations. Is it closing in on another Earth? The Kepler space telescope is exploring a sliver of the Milky Way some 900 parsecs (about 3,000 light years) deep.

http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110202/pdf/470024a.pdf

Launched in 2009 to seek out worlds beyond the Solar System, the Kepler mission is exceeding expectations. Is it closing in on another Earth?

Eugenie Samuel Reich