NASA Announcement

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NASA Announcement

Postby Dracofrost » Tue May 13, 2008 9:45 pm

link

NASA wrote:NASA to Announce Success of Long Galactic Hunt


WASHINGTON -- NASA has scheduled a media teleconference Wednesday, May 14, at 1 p.m. EDT, to announce the discovery of an object in our Galaxy astronomers have been hunting for more than 50 years. This finding was made by combining data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory with ground-based observations.

To participate in the teleconference, reporters must contact the Chandra Press Office at 617-496-7998 or e-mail mwatzke@cfa.harvard.edu. Live audio of the teleconference will be streamed online at:

http://www.nasa.gov/newsaudio


A video file about the discovery will air on NASA Television on May 14. NASA TV is carried on an MPEG-2 digital signal accessed via satellite AMC-6, at 72 degrees west longitude, transponder 17C, 4040 MHz, vertical polarization. NASA TV is available in Alaska and Hawaii on AMC-7 at 137 degrees west longitude, transponder 18C, at 4060 MHz, horizontal polarization.

For information about NASA's Chandra X-Ray Observatory on the Web, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/chandra


Now I dunno about y'all, but I'm really really curious and can't wait. I bet it's direct observation of a blackhole, possible the supermassive one thought to be at the core of our galaxy. Though this recent press release makes you wonder if it's something altogether more grand. Probably nothing like that though.

Anyways, what do y'all think it is? Dark matter? Bertrand Russell's teacup?
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby TerraFrost » Wed May 14, 2008 5:19 pm

I was going to say gravitational lensing, but I think that may have already been observed?

Maybe it's the Higgs boson, produced by two oh-my-god particles colliding!
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby Drazo » Wed May 14, 2008 6:00 pm

The lost city-ship of Atlantis?
[Don't watch here carefully]
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby Catgirl » Wed May 14, 2008 10:52 pm

ALF? E.T.? :lol
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby Dracofrost » Thu May 15, 2008 6:59 am

http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2008/g19/press_051408.html
http://www.badastronomy.com/ covers it in some detail as well

It's in our galaxy, and the youngest we've ever seen this close. It's been kindof a mystery why we haven't seen more, because statistically given the size of the Milky Way we should see about 3 every century, but haven't seen a new one in over 400 years. However, the light from this one reached earth only 140 years ago, about the time of the American Civil War.

The reason nobody noticed it then is because it's near the core of the galaxy, behind huge clumps of dust and gas that pretty much block all the visible light, so we're only seeing it now because of the X-rays and radio waves that have gotten through. So apparently the 'local' supernovas are just hiding behind clouds of dust and gas, but now we can see through those. And seeing such a young supernova 'up close' (only 28,000 light years away) is good, because it lets scientists get a much better idea of how things actually go in a supernova explosion.

So yeah, not dark matter or a black hole or aliens, though they did get a prank caller asking about 'moon crickets'... gotta love the tin-foil hat brigade, huh?

Image
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby TerraFrost » Thu May 15, 2008 2:37 pm

I'm still hoping to see a supernova like SN 1054 in my life time :)
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby Dracofrost » Thu May 15, 2008 6:28 pm

Well, just make sure to stretch your lifetime out to several centuries and that might be likely. Heh. I'd definately like to as well.
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby Catgirl » Thu May 15, 2008 8:15 pm

that's an awesome picture!
too bad my dad freaks out if somebody changes the desktop background :lol
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Re: NASA Announcement

Postby TerraFrost » Fri May 16, 2008 5:54 pm

Dracofrost wrote:Well, just make sure to stretch your lifetime out to several centuries and that might be likely. Heh. I'd definately like to as well.

Well, thats being worked on!!

Incidentally, it seems to me that if dust and gas could confound our searches for super nova's in our galaxy, that they would do so for other supernova's, too. And if the "3 per 100 years" figure is based on our observations of other galaxies and those other galaxies are similarly plighted by dust / gas, then might that "3 per 100 years" figure be a little low?
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