All These Worlds… 2013

By Phil Plait | October 25, 2012 12:24 pm

My old friend Dan Durda is a phenomenal space artist. His digital pieces are incredible. Last year, he put a dozen of them together to create a 2012 space calendar he called "All these Worlds…".

If you’re looking for an early holiday gift, you’re in luck: he’s done it again this year, making a new "All These Worlds 2013". Here’s the cover:

I know, right? More of his artwork is linked in the Related Posts below, and you can go see his prints for sale, too. So go buy one already!


Related Posts:

- All these worlds are yours…
- The Beauty of Space
- Motherlode of potential planets found: more than 1200 alien worlds!
- The galaxy may swarm with billions of wandering planets

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Astronomy, Cool stuff, Pretty pictures

Comments (17)

  1. Kemp

    One thing that bugs me about a lot of these types of pics is the planets hanging in the sky. To be close enough to look as big as they do, I get the feeling the tidal effects would be fairly extreme. Compare the size our moon looks, the strength of its gravity, and the effect it has on us from there. Has anyone run the numbers on this?

  2. Carey

    All these worlds are belong to us, except Europa, which has 28 days.

    It goes something like that, right?

  3. Tara Li

    +Kemp – No, actually, you would be surprised. As the planet is larger, the field is somewhat smoother, actually. In more than a few cases, it may well be that the artist is *undersizing* the apparent size of the planet. From Europa, Jupiter would appear to be about 12 degrees across, where the Sun and the Earth’s Moon appear to take up half a degree from here. That’s roughly 144 times as much sky area covered – HUGE. From Ganymede, about 7.7 degrees – still quite impressive. Tidal effects are interesting, as in the case of Jupiter, they can be seen from the data returned by probes quite easily – Europa seems to have a sub-surface ocean, and Io is … well, kinda volcanic! Ganymede is very icy, but appears to have a metallic core, and may have a sub-surface ocean as well about 200 km down.

  4. Chris

    @1 Kemp
    You might want to download Stellarium (for free) and you can change your location to Io or Europa or Titan to get an idea how Jupiter or Saturn would look in the sky. As for the tidal effects, the main thing would be the planet would probably be tidally locked to the gas giant, so one side would always face the planet. The only reason Io has such a large amount of volcanism is because of the other satellites flexing it. If it wasn’t for Castillo, Europa and Ganymede, Io would probably be pretty boring.

  5. Brett

    It looks like the planet in the sky of that picture is a gas giant, so it could work. I don’t think the big moon eclipsing the planet works, though – a bunch of big moons in orbit around a gas giant might have unstable orbits. I wouldn’t be surprised if a gas giant’s earth-sized moon was its only moon, with the rest of the moons having either collided with it or the gas giant, or been ejected.

  6. Tara Li

    +Brett – You might want to look at Jupiter’s system. The four Galilean moons are quite large (not Earth sized, but a good bit larger than Earth’s Moon.) Three of them are locked into a 1:2:4 resonance that keeps their orbits stable. In fact, you can see in quite a few of the Cassini shots from Saturn that several of the larger moons look fairly large relative both to each other, and to Saturn itself. I expect, in fact, that the artist used those images to get the relative sizes fairly correct.

  7. Muz

    The foreground of that image is a scene from New Zealand, I’d bet money on it!

  8. Its full of ..(exo)planets? ;-)

    @7. Muz – October 25th, 2012 at 9:09 pm : Funny, don’t remember New Zealand / Aotearoa having a gas giant world with rings and moon(s?) in its sky – you saying Kiwis are literally from another planet? ;-)

    Those have to be largest and weirdest looking Scotch thistle flowers I’ve ever seen too!

    Looks like a superluminously awesome calendar – love that sort of imaginative spaceart. 8)

  9. Noah

    The pictures are beautiful but I don’t like how far the horizon is! The Galilean moons’ horizons should be half of Earth’s (e.g Europa is about 2.5km at 2m elevation vs. Earth’s 5km).

    It really removes some the the alienness of it.

    The vivid an image of the near horizons in the Red Mars series has left me longing for that imagery.

  10. khms

    +Muz:

    The foreground of that image is a scene from New Zealand, I’d bet money on it!

    I’ve seen scenery exactly like that in the Alps in Austria. And I suspect you could find similar in the Rockies, or lots of other mountain ranges.

    As for those brown-green things, they make much more sense as people (or animals) than as plants, in an area looking like that. Any actual plants I’d expect to be very small. Like the grass or moss where they are standing. Look at the distant mountains: pretty bare of any vegetation.

  11. Nigel Depledge

    Carey (2) said:

    All these worlds are belong to us, except Europa, which has 28 days.

    It goes something like that, right?

    Yes, except in a leap year.

  12. Grand Lunar

    “…The planets say ‘Come here, come here…”

    Yeah, been listening to “The Sky is Calling” a bit much lately!

    I hope a local store here in Phoenix carries these! Definately something I’d want!

    If not, I’ll settle for kittens….

  13. Nigel Depledge

    Chris (4) said:

    The only reason Io has such a large amount of volcanism is because of the other satellites flexing it. If it wasn’t for Castillo, Europa and Ganymede, Io would probably be pretty boring.

    Erm . . . according to nineplanets.org, this is not quite right. It seems that Europa and Ganymede cause Io to “wobble” in its orbit, which results in very large Jovian tides. But the tidal force comes from Jupiter, not from Europa or Ganymede. Callisto, it seems, does not get to play in this game.

  14. Nigel Depledge

    Muz (7) said:

    The foreground of that image is a scene from New Zealand, I’d bet money on it!

    You have some weird plants in NZ, then!

  15. TomH

    Thanks for the links, Phil. I’ve shared the links to Dan Durda’s Cafepress store and his gallery to the science forum at Democratic Underground. I hope it sends some business his way!

    Oh, and I’ll probably share the link to the calendar on my Facebook page.

  16. I have a calendar collection. Since 2006, I’ve been choosing one calendar per year, always on a theme I haven’t had before, and keeping them archived. Phil, I think you’d enjoy looking through it.

    I haven’t chosen any astronomy-related themes so far (though my 2011 calendar includes a couple of aurorae pics), but I will, inevitably. There are just so many themes to choose from. I’ll be choosing my 2013 calendar soon — traditionally I do that in early November.

    Dan Durda’s calendar looks worthy, and is a theme I would consider. But I’m still going to browse the local shops. (One disadvantage of Internet-ordered calendars is that they tend not to have Australian public holidays marked.)

  17. Craig Hartel

    If tidal forces aren’t much of a consideration, then what about radiation? Is it a given that gas giants radiate the bejeebers out of their local neighbourhoods?

    I think the gas giants should be their own class of planets, no? Kick them out of the Earth/Venus/Mercury/Mars Club and give them their own place to play! But I digress. My first reaction seeing gas or other giant planets in the sky like in this art is that the tides would be enormous, but I never thought about the tidal locking. Would this cause the locked planet to bulge significantly? Its orbital period would have to be rather short in order to have the seasons implied by the image, no?

    I need to do some reading. :)

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