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nasagoddard Solar Gusher -- An active region blew out a flare (bright flash) and a dark rush of plasma spewing above the Sun (Apr. 4, 2014). Then the semi-transparent plasma seemed to turn and shift in planes. Some of the particles went roaring into space, while at least some of them were seen falling back into the Sun.

Credit: NASA/Goddard/SDO #nasagoddard #sun #flare
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nasagoddard Total Lunar Eclipse -- The United States was in a prime orbital position and time of day to view the eclipse on April 15, 2014. Depending on local weather conditions, the public got a spectacular view looking into the sky as the moon's appearance changed from bright orange to blood red to dark brown and perhaps gray. The eclipse is a phenomenon that occurs when the Earth, moon and sun are in perfect alignment, blanketing the moon in the Earth's shadow. The United States will not be able to witness a full lunar eclipse in its entirety again until 2019. This image was taken in San Jose, Calif.

Credit: NASA Ames Research Center/Brian Day #nasagoddard #eclipse #bloodmoon
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nasagoddard Powerful Tropical Cyclone Ita Making Landfall in Queensland, Australia -- NASA's Aqua satellite passed over Tropical Cyclone Ita as it began making landfall on the Eastern Cape York Peninsula of Queensland, Australia, today, April 11, 2014. Ita officially made landfall at Cape Flattery about 9:00 p.m. local AEST time as a Category 4 storm according to reports from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer that flies aboard Aqua captured an image of the Category 4 storm on April 11 at 12:00 a.m. EDT (4 a.m. UTC). Satellite imagery indicates the eye is 9.2 miles wide (8 nautical miles, or 14.8 km). Warnings and watches remain in effect as the center of Ita is expected to remain at hurricane strength as it moves in a southerly direction, staying just west of Cairns over the next day. A tropical cyclone warning is in effect between Coen and Innisfail, including Cooktown, Port Douglas, Cairns, extending inland to Kalinga, Palmerville, Mareeba and Chillagoe. A tropical cyclone watch is in effect between Innisfail to Cardwell, extending inland.

ABC reported that the strongest maximum sustained winds around the center of circulation were near 142.9 mph (124.2 knots, or 230 kph) and many trees have been downed and homes damaged.

According to ABC, preliminary reports suggest that power may be out for a month in some areas.

On April 11 at 5 a.m. EDT (9 a.m. UTC), Tropical #Cyclone #Ita had maximum sustained winds near 143.8 mph (125 knots, or 231.5 kph). It was centered near 14.8 degrees south latitude and 145.3 degrees east longitude, about 168 miles (146 nautical miles, or 288 km) north of Cairns, #Australia, and has tracked south-southwestward at 10.3 mph (9 knots, or 16.6 kph). Ita is moving around a subtropical ridge (elongated area) of high pressure and the Joint Typhoon Warning Center expects Ita to start curving to the southeast around that ridge in the next day before heading back out into the Coral Sea.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/Jeff Schmaltz/MODIS Land Rapid Response Team #nasagoddard #Queensland
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nasagoddard Mike Menzel and Nobel Laureate Dr. John Mather joined Saylor Institute in a Google+ Hangout about Systems Engineering - how complex space missions like the James Webb Space Telescope stay on track and work well together. 1w

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nasagoddard We are so EXCITED!!!! Goddard Wins Award for Social Media Excellence
The social media team at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., won a Shorty Award in the "social media's best government" category. @NASAGoddard took the prize at the Shorties' sixth annual ceremony in New York City on April 7.

The Shorty Award honors the best uses of social media across sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, YouTube, Foursquare and others. Founded in 2008, the award derives its name from the short, 140-character limit on each tweet sent using Twitter. "This award is thanks to all the scientists, engineers and everyone at NASA Goddard who create the amazing content we get to share with the world," said Aries Keck, Goddard social media team lead.

By tradition, Shorty award-winners tweet their acceptance speeches. Goddard’s was, "Honored by our #ShortyAwards win! Our universe is a big and wondrous place, and we'll keep sharing the science, tweet by tweet." Goddard's nomination – the center's first – came in February from the Shorty nominating board, which also selected the social media presences of United Kingdom Prime Minister David Cameron and U.S. Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey as government category finalists.
Credit: NASA/Goddard #ShortyAward #Government #ShortyAwards
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nasagoddard In this Hubble image, we can see an almost face-on view of the galaxy NGC 1084. At first glance, this galaxy is pretty unoriginal. Like the majority of galaxies that we observe it is a spiral galaxy, and, as with about half of all spirals, it has no bar running through its loosely wound arms. However, although it may seem unremarkable on paper, NGC 1084 is actually a near-perfect example of this type of galaxy — and Hubble has a near-perfect view of it.

For more on this and other space exploration news, visit nasa.gov/goddard
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nasagoddard Tropical Cyclone Gillian off Australia -- Tropical Cyclone Gillian was close to peak strength on March 23, 2014 when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite passed over the Southern Indian Ocean and captured this true-color image. On that day, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) reported maximum sustained winds near 161 mph (259 km/h) making it a Category 5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Fortunately, Gillian was pulling away from Indonesia, so all of the regional warnings were canceled on March 23.

At the time this image was captured, the storm was showing slight signs of weakening. The previously open eye was beginning to become cloud-filled, and upper-level wind shear was beginning to cause Gillian to elongate. However, a thick band of thunderstorms can be seen wrapped tightly around the center of circulation, creating the classic apostrophe-shape that marks a strong cyclone.

The upper-level northwesterly wind shear that had been causing Gillian to elongate and weaken continued to strengthen, with steadily blowing winds reported as high as 35.5 mph (55.5 km/h). The storm could not retain intensity under those conditions, and continue to drop wind strength. By March 26, both the Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) and the JTWC had issued final advisories, and the storm quickly dissipated.

Despite Gillian’s fiercely strong winds at peak strength, the storm center stayed away from land, so damage was relatively minor. Java suffered strong waves, and the storm brought gusty winds and rain to much of northern Australia, particularly along the coast of the Gulf of Carpentaria. Christmas Island reported substantial damage to trees, and minor damage to some buildings. Due to the storm’s location, the winds and waves caused difficulties and delays for the search for Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 which was taking place in the Southern Indian Ocean southwest of Perth during this period.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/Jeff Schmaltz/MODIS Land Rapid Response Team #nasagoddard #weather #hurricane #Indonesia #wind #storm #gillian
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nasagoddard This is a Hubble image of the most massive cluster of galaxies ever seen to exist when the universe was just half its current age of 13.8 billion years. The cluster contains several hundred galaxies.

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has weighed the largest known galaxy cluster in the distant universe, catalogued as ACT-CL J0102-4915, and found it definitely lives up to its nickname -- El Gordo (Spanish for "the fat one"). By measuring how much the cluster's gravity warps images of galaxies in the distant background, a team of astronomers has calculated the cluster's mass to be as much as 3 million billion times the mass of our sun. Hubble data show the galaxy cluster, which is 9.7 billion light-years away from Earth, is roughly 43 percent more massive than earlier estimates.

The team used Hubble to measure how strongly the mass of the cluster warped space. Hubble's high resolution allowed measurements of so-called "weak lensing," where the cluster's immense gravity subtly distorts space like a funhouse mirror and warps images of background galaxies. The greater the warping, the more mass is locked up in the cluster.

Credit: NASA, ESA, and J. Jee (University of California, Davis)#Hubble #hst #galaxy
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nasagoddard Inside the world's largest clean room at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., engineers worked tirelessly to install another essential part of the James Webb Space Telescope - the Near Infrared Camera into the heart of the telescope.

To complete this installation, the engineers needed to carefully move NIRCam inside the heart or ISIM, or Integrated Science Instrument Module that will house all of the science instruments. "Installing NIRCam into the center of the structure is nerve wracking because of the tight clearances," said Marcia J. Rieke, Professor of Astronomy at the University of Arizona, and principal investigator for the NIRCam. "I'm glad nothing bumped, and all the bolts are in place." NIRCam is a unique machine because in addition to being one of the four science instruments on the Webb, it also serves as the wavefront sensor, which means it will provide vital information for shaping the telescope mirrors and aligning its optics so that they can function properly and see into the distant universe. The NIRCam instrument will operate at very cold temperatures, and will be tested to ensure that it will be able to withstand the environment of space.

Credit: NASA/Goddard/Chris Gunn
#nasagoddard #jwst #space
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nasagoddard The star-forming region Sharpless 2-106 (S106) has a bi-polar shape that, in a December 2011 Hubble press release, was likened to a "celestial snow angel". The "wings" of the nebula are actually bubbles of hot gas created by stellar winds and high energy radiation coming from a massive, hot, newborn star in the center. A ring of dense gas and dust encircles that star and forces the outflows into two oppositely directed lobes. The blue light in the S106 image represents hotter gas along the interior of the lobes, while the red light comes from cooler gas along the exterior.

This movie presents a scientific visualization of S106 in which the Hubble image has been augmented with additional field-of-view from the Subaru Infrared Telescope. A couple research articles in science journals described the basic hourglass-like shape of the nebula. Based on those papers, and augmented by intuition and artistic license as needed, the stars and the lobes of glowing gas from the Hubble/Subaru two-dimensional image have been separated and sculpted to create the depth in the movie. This three-dimensional view illustrates and emphasizes that many of the objects contained within astronomical images are not at the same distance, but, in fact, spread across many light-years of space. Note, however, that the relative distances between stars and the nebula have been compressed.

Credit: G. Bacon, T. Borders, L. Frattare, Z. Levay, and F. Summers (STScI) #nasagoddard #hubble #hst #angle
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nasagoddard Galaxy clusters are some of the most massive structures that can be found in the Universe - large groups of galaxies bound together by gravity. This image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope reveals one of these clusters, known as MACS J0454.1-0300. Each of the bright spots seen here is a galaxy, and each is home to many millions, or even billions, of stars.

Astronomers have determined the mass of MACS J0454.1-0300 to be around 180 trillion times the mass of the sun. Clusters like this are so massive that their gravity can even change the behavior of space around them, bending the path of light as it travels through them, sometimes amplifying it and acting like a cosmic magnifying glass. Thanks to this effect, it is possible to see objects that are so far away from us that they would otherwise be too faint to be detected.

In this case, several objects appear to be dramatically elongated and are seen as sweeping arcs to the left of this image. These are galaxies located at vast distances behind the cluster - their image has been amplified, but also distorted, as their light passes through MACS J0454.1-0300. This process, known as gravitational lensing, is an extremely valuable tool for astronomers as they peer at very distant objects.

This effect will be put to good use with the start of Hubble's Frontier Fields program over the next few years, which aims to explore very distant objects located behind lensing clusters, similar to MACS J0454.1-0300, to investigate how stars and galaxies formed and evolved in the early Universe.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, Acknowledgement: Nick Rose #nasagoddard #space #hubble #hst #galaxy
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Normal NASA Goddard
nasagoddard This image shows audiences taking in the new astronomy-inspired art installation premiered in #Rome at the Science with the Hubble Space Telescope IV conference.

The installation, named Heaven's Carousel, links together the fields of art, music and astronomy. Conceptualised and designed by German artist and composer Tim Otto Roth, the work is inspired by novel work on the accelerating expansion of the Universe by Nobel laureate Adam Riess (STScl), Greek cosmology and Renaissance astronomers.

Credit: NASA, ESA, and Pam Jeffries (STScI)

#nasagoddard #hubble #hst #art #science
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Normal NASA Goddard
nasagoddard -- The Water Planet -- Viewed from space, the most striking feature of our planet is the water. In both liquid and frozen form, it covers 75% of the Earth’s surface. It fills the sky with clouds. Water is practically everywhere on Earth, from inside the rocky crust to inside our cells.

This detailed, photo-like view of Earth is based largely on observations from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite. It is one of many images of our watery world featured in a new story examining water in all of its forms and functions. Here is an excerpt: “In all, the Earth’s water content is about 1.39 billion cubic kilometers (331 million cubic miles), with the bulk of it, about 96.5%, being in the global oceans. As for the rest, approximately 1.7% is stored in the polar icecaps, glaciers, and permanent snow, and another 1.7% is stored in groundwater, lakes, rivers, streams, and soil.

Only a thousandth of 1% of the water on Earth exists as water vapor in the atmosphere. Despite its small amount, this water vapor has a huge influence on the planet. Water vapor is a powerful greenhouse gas, and it is a major driver of the Earth’s weather and climate as it travels around the globe, transporting heat with it.

For human needs, the amount of freshwater for drinking and agriculture is particularly important. Freshwater exists in lakes, rivers, groundwater, and frozen as snow and ice. Estimates of groundwater are particularly difficult to make, and they vary widely. Groundwater may constitute anywhere from approximately 22 to 30% of fresh water, with ice accounting for most of the remaining 78 to 70%.” NASA image by Robert Simmon and Marit Jentoft-Nilsen, based on MODIS data. Instrument: Terra - MODIS NASA image acquired July 10, 2005

#nasagoddard #WorldWaterDay #earth #water
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nasagoddard This new Hubble image is centered on NGC 5793, a spiral galaxy over 150 million light-years away in the constellation of Libra. This galaxy has two particularly striking features: a beautiful dust lane and an intensely bright center — much brighter than that of our own galaxy, or indeed those of most spiral galaxies we observe.

NGC 5793 is a Seyfert galaxy. These galaxies have incredibly luminous centers that are thought to be caused by hungry supermassive black holes — black holes that can be billions of times the size of the sun — that pull in and devour gas and dust from their surroundings.

This galaxy is of great interest to astronomers for many reasons. For one, it appears to house objects known as masers. Whereas lasers emit visible light, masers emit microwave radiation. The term "masers" comes from the acronym Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. Maser emission is caused by particles that absorb energy from their surroundings and then re-emit this in the microwave part of the spectrum.

Credit: NASA, ESA, and E. Perlman (Florida Institute of Technology)

#nasagoddard #Hubble #HST #galaxy #star #sky #cloud #light
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nasagoddard This full-disk image from the GOES-13 satellite was captured at 11:45 UTC (7:45 a.m. EDT) and shows the Americas on March 20, 2014. This date marks the start of astronomical spring in the northern hemisphere. Happy first day of spring!

Credit: NOAA/NASA GOES Project #nasagoddard #spring #springequinox #equinox #earth #firstdayofspring
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nasagoddard Arizona copper mining from space -- Arizona produces 60% of the total copper mined in the US; in 2007, 750,000 tons of copper came out of the state. One of the major mining districts is located about 30 km south of Tucson. Starting around 1950, open-pit mining replaced underground operations, and the ASARCO-Mission complex, Twin Buttes, and Sierrita mines became large open pit operations. Accompanying copper mineralization, silver, molybdenum, zinc, lead and gold are extracted. In addition to the pits themselves, enormous leach ponds and tailings piles surround the pits. The image was acquired May 31, 2012, covers an area of 22 by 28 km, and is located at 31.9 degrees north, 111 degrees west.

With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER images Earth to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet. ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched Dec. 18, 1999, on Terra. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and data products.

The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER provides scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring of dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

#nasagoddard #arizona #space
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nasagoddard At about 89,000 miles in diameter, Jupiter could swallow 1,000 Earths. It is the largest planet in the solar system and perhaps the most majestic. Vibrant bands of clouds carried by winds that can exceed 400 mph continuously circle the planet's atmosphere. Such winds sustain spinning anticyclones like the Great Red Spot-a raging storm three and a half times the size of Earth located in Jupiter's southern hemisphere. In January and February 1979, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft zoomed toward Jupiter, capturing hundreds of images during its approach. The observations revealed many unique features of the planet that are still being explored to this day. Watch the video to see a time-lapse of Jupiter assembled from images taken by the spacecraft.

Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center and images courtesy of NASA/JPL
#nasagoddard #jupiter #space #planet #Voyager1
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  •   pattipuckett How cool. 4w
  •   krisz_krisz Great image 3w
  •   onlinecarlo Wonder what's living underneath the storm @kyle__venegas @p_dro 3w
  •   p_dro Looks like a painting @kyle__venegas 3w
  •   is0n7 Damn 3w
  •   panachi2545 I At about 89,000 miles in diameter, Jupiter could swallow 1,000 Earths. It is the largest planet in the solar system and perhaps the most majestic. Vibrant bands of clouds carried by winds that can exceed 400 mph continuously circle the planet's atmosphere. Such winds sustain spinning anticyclones like the Great Red Spot-a raging storm three and a half times the size of Earth located in Jupiter's southern hemisphere. In January and February 1979, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft zoomed toward Jupiter, capturing hundreds of images during its approach. The observations revealed many unique features of the planet that are still being explored to this day. Watch the video to see a time-lapse of Jupiter assembled from images taken by the spacecraft.

    Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center and images courtesy of NASA/JPL
    #nasagoddard #jupiter #space #planet #Voyager1 3w
  •   isaabottini Amazing! I love NASA! And I love even more space 18h

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nasagoddard Hubble Celebrates 24th Anniversary with Infrared Image of Nearby Star Factory.

In celebration of the 24th anniversary of the launch of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope (HST), astronomers have captured infrared-light images of a churning region of #star birth 6,400 light-years away.

The collection of images reveals a shadowy, dense knot of gas and dust sharply contrasted against a backdrop of brilliant glowing gas in the #Monkey Head Nebula (also known as NGC 2174 and Sharpless Sh2-252). The image demonstrates Hubble's powerful infrared vision and offers a tantalizing hint of what scientists can expect from the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope. Observations of NGC 2174 were taken in February, 2014.

Massive newborn stars near the center of the nebula (and toward the right in this image) are blasting away at dust within the nebula. The ultraviolet light emitted by these bright stars helps shape the dust into giant pillars.

This carving action occurs because the nebula is mostly composed of hydrogen gas, which becomes ionized by the ultraviolet radiation. As the dust particles are warmed by the ultraviolet light of the stars, they heat up and begin to glow at infrared wavelengths.

Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

#nasagoddard #Hubble #hst #star #space #nebula #anniversary
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nasagoddard The Emerald Isle looking very, emerald! Happy St. Patrick's Day!
On August 7, 2003, the NASA Aqua MODIS instrument acquired this image of Ireland. Called the Emerald Isle for a good reason, Ireland is draped in vibrant shades of green amidst the blue Atlantic Ocean and Celtic (south) and Irish (east) Seas. Faint ribbons of blue-green phytoplankton drift in the waters of the Celtic Sea, just south of Dublin.

Credit: NASA/Goddard/MODIS/Aqua #Ireland #StPatricksDay #Earth
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nasagoddard Pi Day ... After math. #PiDay #PieDay 1mon

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