Astronews Daily (2455519)

November 18, 2010 12:29 by scibuff

Top Stories

Physicists Create and Trap Antimatter, Universe Doesn’t Explode – In a paper today, scientists from Switzerland’s CERN lab reveal they created and trapped a form of antimatter for the first time ever. There’s no practical use for this except, you know, figuring out why the universe exists. -Adrian Chen

A Cosmologist’s Wish List: Four Most-Wanted Discoveries – Cosmology is a fairly young science, one which attempts to reconstruct the history of our Universe from billions of years ago. Looking back so far in time is extremely difficult, and adding to the complexity is that many of the pillars upon which the theories of cosmology rest have only been conceived within the last 20 years or so. –Nancy Atkinson / Universe Today

New Geography Trivia Challenge From Space – You can now test your knowledge of the world’s geography in a new trivia game on Twitter sponsored by NASA and the astronauts on board the International Space Station. It is kind of like our own “Where In the Universe Challenge” but strictly of images from Earth, and in this contest, there are even actual prizes. Astronaut Scott Kelly started the game this week, which is Geography Awareness Week. His vantage point is perfect for hosting the game, as where else can you get a better view of the various geographical features on our planet than from the International Space Station? –Nancy Atkinson / Universe Today

Infrared Telescope Spots ‘Space Jellyfish’ : Big Pic – NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has spotted a bizarre-looking object floating amongst the ocean of stars: a fluorescing jellyfish. However, looks can be deceiving; this ‘jellyfish’ is actually a well-known planetary nebula, but astronomers have never seen it like this before. –Discovery News

UK takes ‘open source’ route into space – The fundamental barrier to greater space activity is the cost of access. If people didn’t have to part with squillions to get up there, far more spacecraft would go into orbit than is currently the case. And it’s a problem that amplifies itself as well. –Jonathan Amos / BBC Blogs

Hands of the Apollo Astronauts – There are Neil’s. And there are Buzz’s. And Pete Conrad’s. And Alan Shepard’s. These are the hands of the Apollo astronauts, the plaster casts created to make their custom gloves in Houston, Texas, 1968. High five! –Gizmodo

Bonus: Nov 15, 2010 – Yo Mama Jokes: Astrophysics Edition – Yo’ mama so fat: … she absorbs 90% of the neutrino’s incident upon her; … she’s held up by neutron degeneracy pressure; … I stand next to her so I can age more slowly –Calamities of Nature

[more stories]

Videos

The STEREO (Behind) spacecraft observed no fewer than four flares (and likely five) from one active region over about a 30-hour period (Nov. 6-7, 2010). These were minor to medium-sized flares, but even so they still overwhelmed the telescope sensors enough to cause artifacts of light seen as quick streaks as well as staggered, carat-shaped brightenings, which are the diffraction pattern off the internal structures in the EUVI telescope (see still image). Flares are brief but intense solar storms that are known to blast radiation into space, but not a lot of plasma particles - Courtesy of SOHO/STEREO (Behind) consortium. SOHO is a project of international cooperation between ESA and NASA

At NASA's Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39A, technicians are completing repairs on space shuttle Discovery's ground umbilical carrier plate (GUCP). On Nov. 17, the hydrogen vent line was reattached to the GUCP. That vent pipe carries excess hydrogen gas safely away from Discovery to a flare stack, where it is burned off. Teams will analyze the hardware fittings and pressure check the connections to look for any possible leaks. Discovery's next launch window for STS-133 extends from Nov. 30 through Dec. 6.

Photos

M42 in Hubble Palette

M42 in Hubble Palette

M42 in False Colors

M42 in False Colors

M42 in narrowband

M42 in narrowband

M42 in RGB

M42 in RGB

Comet C/2010 V1 Ikeya Murakami

Comet C/2010 V1 Ikeya Murakami

M33 - Triangulum Galaxy

M33 - Triangulum Galaxy

NGC 7000 / North America

NGC 7000 / North America

M45 - Pleiades

M45 - Pleiades

Gallery Pick of the Day

Sunrise at KSC

Sunrise at KSC - Credit: Jen Scheer

The photo above is “Pick of the Day” from one of the three galleries: Astronomy Gallery, Space Shuttle Gallery and Space Station Gallery.

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