Lost in space.

Who could forget that classic SciFi family drama/sitcom, Lost in Space.

A helpful robot pet, the naive wunderkind, a wascally professor, mom and dad, the eye candy brothers and sisters and the strapping captain to save the day (of course if he really wanted to save the day he would have found a way home, and don’t get me started on Gilligan’s Island).

No, today’s images really do come from space.  New images abound from Spitzer and Hubble and a host of other imaging apparatus that are expanding our understanding of the Universe and ourselves.  Enjoy.

This NASA Chandra X-Ray Observatory image shows a highly distorted supernova remnant that may contain the most recent black hole formed in the Milky Way galaxy. The composite image combines X-rays from Chandra (blue and green), radio data from the Very Large Array (pink), and infrared data from the Palomar Observatory (yellow). Most supernova explosions that destroy massive stars are generally symmetrical.  In the W49B supernova, however, it appears that the material near its poles was ejected at much higher speeds than that at its equator.  There is also evidence that the explosion that produced W49B left behind a black hole and not a neutron star like most other supernovas. (Photo by L. Lopez/MIT/CXC/NASA via AFP Photo)

This Chandra X-Ray Observatory image shows a highly distorted supernova remnant, aptly name W49B, that might be home to what scientists believe is the most recent black hole formed in the Milky Way. I don’t see it…no really I don’t.

An infrared portrait from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope which shows generations of stars is seen in this undated NASA handout image released February 14, 2013. In this wispy star-forming region, called W5, the oldest stars can be seen as blue dots in the centers of the two hollow cavities (other blue dots are background and foreground stars not associated with the region). Red shows heated dust that pervades the region's cavities, while green highlights dense clouds. (Photo by NASA/Reuters/JPL-Caltech/Harvard-Smithsonian/Handout)

This new infrared image taken by the Spitzer Space Telescope shows a star-forming region, called W5.  Clearly, we need better names here NASA!

This National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO) image of the Planetary Nebula Sh2-174, which may suggest a rose to some, was obtained with Mosaic 1 camera on the Mayall 4-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory in Tucson, Arizona January 8, 2013. A planetary nebula is created when a low-mass star blows off its outer layers at the end of its life. The core of the star remains and is called a white dwarf.  Photo was captured January 8, 2013. (Photo by T.A. Rector (University of Alaska Anchorage) and H. Schweiker/NASA/Reuters)

Just in time for Mother’s Day is this image of the Planetary Nebula Sh2-174 (C’mon Man!) taken at the National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO).  Looks like a lovely rose for mom.

Not to be confused with the Rossetta Nebula (much better than Caldwell 49).

Or stellar region NGC 604 (M33).  I may have to try to take this image, because summer time is galaxy time!  Of course my image will be so much better than this Hubble image that I would not dare post it for fear of embarrassing NASA.

This image by Hubble shows what happens “When World’s Collide!” Actually NGC 6745 is what happens when galaxies collide, but I had to keep up with the old SciFi schtick, my readers demand nothing less than good SciFi schtick.

This image is NGC 6543 known as the Cat's Eye Nebula as it appears to the Chandra X-Ray Observatory and Hubble Telescope. A planetary nebula is a phase of stellar evolution that the sun should experience several billion years from now, when it expands to become a red giant and then sheds most of its outer layers, leaving behind a hot core that contracts to form a dense white dwarf star. This image was released October 10, 2012. (Photo by J. Kastner/NASA/CXC/RIT)

This excellent image of the Cat’s Eye nebula (NGC 6543) is a collaborative effort between Chandra and Hubble.  See what happens when space telescopes play nice with each other.

Next week is all about mom.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +

Norman

 

Picture week starts with new Hubble images of an old favorite.

Everyone (in most of the world) can look up into the night sky and see the Orion nebula with their own eyes.  No telescope needed.  Part of the Orion complex is the often imaged Horsehead nebula.  Below is an image that I took a few years ago.

But with a new infra-red camera, Hubble once again bests me.  Oh, to have a telescope outside the atmosphere (or some really good adaptive optics!)

Horsehead in a new infrared light

The latest image of the Horsehead Nebula (IC 434) from Hubble.  The Horsehead nebula is actually a dark molecular cloud, about 1,500 light-years from Earth.  It is only visible because the dark dust that makes up the nebula its is in front of another brighter nebula.  This is one of many so called “dark nebula.”  Most dark nebula are fairly hard to image, because, well, they are dark.  So you have to take a lot of exposures over a long period of time to capture an image of a dark nebula, like the Dark Horse nebula below.

File:GreatDarkHorse Nebulae.jpg

Most of the time you won’t actually be able to tell if you have anything until you do some processing.

Luckily, the Horsehead nebula is fairly easy to capture due to all the bright stuff around it.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +

Norman

What I Learned This Weekend

It can get COLD while doing astronomy.  Really, cold.  I haven’t been this cold since I left Colorado.  Luckily, where I was had zero moisture in the air, so despite being below freezing there wasn’t any snow or frost.  However, I did not use any lotion, and I think every pore of my skin is now cracking open.

I rubbed my leg through my pants (big mistake) and now have, what looks like, a 3″ road rash on my shine.  Evidently, denim can also act as sandpaper in the right circumstance. I am afraid to scratch or rub anything else for fear of opening other wounds.

I also learned that there are a great number of nebula that I have yet to image.  I found an intriguing nebula, NGC 2174, also known as the Monkey Head Nebula located in the constellation Orion.  I haven’t imaged in Orion for awhile, because I think everyone has at least a dozen shots in their portfolios of the great nebula.  Of course, I can’t find my images of the big O nebula to share with you at the moment.  So instead, here is a quickly (and badly) processed image of the Monkey Head that I did manage to take while freezing my ass off.

Monkey (DD)

I promise a better version when I can process the data.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +

Norman

 

 

An Astronomical Winter Wonderland For Your Enjoyment

Space has a few objects that resemble their Earth based counterparts.  I present a few of them for your enjoyment.

Snow Angel S106 Nebula

Cosmic Wreath of the star-forming nebula Barnard 3.

Celestial Ornament: Pulsar SXP 1062

Pulsar SXP 1062, a celestial ornament.

Space Christmas Tree

The Cone Nebula in NGC 2264, near the bottom, looks like a Christmas tree in space.

Snowflake Cluster and Cone Nebula

The Snowflake Cluster (NGC 2264) is pretty self explanitory.

The Christmas tree cluster (also part of NGC2264) is also a pretty sight in the night sky.

Happy winter solstice, or what ever holiday you celebrate around the world this time of year.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +, or drop me an email or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.

Norman

The Eye In The Sky.

Two NASA space telescopes have captured a spectacular new photo of the Helix Nebula that resembles a giant cosmic eye.

This object, called the Helix nebula, lies 650 light-years away, in the constellation of Aquarius.

The Helix Nebula (also known as NGC 7293) represents a dying star known as a planetary nebula.  Planetary nebulas aren’t planets at all, but they were first identified and named in the 18th century because they resembled gas giants like Jupiter and Saturn, and the name stuck.

The new picture combines data from the Spitzer Space Telescope, which takes images in the infrared (the yellow part of the image), and the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX), that images in ultraviolet (the blue part of the image) on the opposite side of the electromagnetic spectrum.

The Helix Nebula is about 650 light-years from Earth in the constellation of Aquarius.   The nebula is classified as a planetary nebula.   Stars about the size of the sun, at the end of their lives, run out of hydrogen and helium fuel for fusion in their cores.  When this happens, the stars begin to expel their outer gaseous layers into glowing remnants around them.  When all the gas has been expelled, the stars collapse into a white dwarf star about the size of the Earth.

“The white dwarf is about the size of Earth, but has a mass very close to that of the original star; in fact, a teaspoon of a white dwarf would weigh as much as a few elephants!” NASA scientists stated.

The white dwarf star in the Helix nebula is the tiny white dot in the center.

If you need help with a patent, copyright or trademark matter, or know someone that can use my help, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities.  Connect with me on Google +

Norman