Search Results for 'spitzer'

Spitzer sees the glow of a boiling planet

May 8, 2012 | By

Since the first planet was discovered orbiting another Sun-like star in 1995, nearly 800 more have been discovered. Only a handful have been directly detected: most are discovered by their influence on their star, either by tugging it or blocking its light as the planet orbits (at the bottom of this post is a gallery […]

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A warm anniversary for Spitzer

April 17, 2012 | By

In 2003, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope launched into space to begin a mission to observe the heavens in infrared. That kind of light is emitted by warm objects, so its main imaging camera — called IRAC, for Infrared Array Camera — had to be cooled using liquid helium, or else the infrared light it gave […]

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Spitzer sees star spew spurious spouts

April 4, 2011 | By

Spitzer Space Telescope is an orbiting infrared observatory. It ran out of coolant a few years back — needed to keep its highly sensitive IR cameras working — but before it did, it took this amazing image of a young star blasting out twin jets of matter: Neat! [Click to collimatenate.] The star is called […]

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Gallery: Spitzer's Greatest Hits

February 10, 2011 | By

[This is a gallery of gorgeous images, my favorites, from the orbiting infrared observatory called the Spitzer Space Telescope. Click the thumbnail picture to get a bigger picture and more information, click the big pictures to go to my original blog posts about the pictures, and scroll through the gallery using the left and right […]

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Spitzer's hot topics

August 5, 2009 | By

Y’know, when I’m really old and past my prime, I expect to watch a lot of TV and take naps. But when NASA’s missions are old and having trouble, they produce images like this: Whoa. Click to embiggenate. Spitzer Space Telescope is an infrared observatory that launched in 2003. Infrared light is emitted by warm […]

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Spitzer bags… Omega Cen

April 10, 2008 | By

Yeah, not what you thought, eh? But still… pretty. Spitzer Space Telescope caught this image of the cluster Omega Centauri, which I recently wrote about. Whether Omega Cen is a galaxy or a globular cluster doesn’t change the fact that this is a striking image. It’s actually a combo of Spitzer and ground-based images taken […]

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Hubble and Spitzer find most distant galaxy

February 12, 2008 | By

Hot on the heels of that fabulous Spitzer image comes news that Hubble and Spitzer have teamed up to find what may be the most distant galaxy ever seen. It appears to be at a distance of 12.8 billion light years. Yikes. Here’s the image (click to make it more cromulent): The big image shows […]

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Spitzer peeks under a cradle’s blanket

February 12, 2008 | By

I think one of the most amazing things we have learned in the centuries of the scientific pursuit of astronomy is that stars are born, they live out their lives, and that they die. That concept by itself is stunning: a process which takes billions of years can be understood, simply by knowing a few […]

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The Universe is still expanding. As expected.

October 4, 2012 | By

The Universe is getting bigger! But then, we knew this. We’ve known it for a long time! The reason you know Edwin Hubble’s name at all is because in the 1920s he was critical in figuring out the Universe was expanding. He and many other people did this by looking at a specific kind of […]

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The Helix has pink eye

October 4, 2012 | By

One of the most amazing objects in the sky is the Helix Nebula, an expanding cloud of gas and dust surrounding a dying star. This type of object is called a planetary nebula, and it’s formed when a star a bit more massive than the Sun turns into a red giant and blows off its […]

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