Mars Is At Its Best This Week Until 2052. Here’s How You Can Get A Close-Up In A YouTube Telescope

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Can you see Mars at night? Yes—right now you can see Mars from Earth by looking due east as soon as the Sun sets in the west. Mars is today at opposition so as bright as it ever gets. 

However, if you want to get an extra-special close-up then Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona is streaming a special “Virtual Mars Series” of planet-gazing events on YouTube.

During these live webcasts you’ll be able to see real-time close-ups of the red planet through a huge 14-inch “virtual telescope.” 

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How, when and where to see live close-ups of Mars streaming on YouTube

The observatory is running three sessions on YouTube . Its “Virtual Mars Series” is free and open to everyone.

Clear skies allowing, each session will begin at 8 p.m. MST (that’s 03:00 UTC on the following date) and include live views of Mars through the observatory’s 14-inch PlaneWave CDK telescope each evening: 

  • Tuesday, October 13: 8 – 9:15 p.m. MST
  • Tuesday, October 20: 8 – 9:15 p.m. MST
  • Tuesday, October 27: 8 – 9:15 p.m. MST

MORE FROM FORBESWhat’s That Very Bright Planet In The East? How To See Mars This Week At Its Best Until 2052

What time to see Mars tonight? 

If you want to know when to see Mars it’s easy—today’s opposition of Mars makes the red planet visible all night long. Mars makes its closest approaches to Earth during oppositions, which occur every 26 months. 

How to see Mars tonight 

In practice, it may take some finding at that time of night because it will be low on the

Spitzer space telescope legacy — ScienceDaily

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To understand the significance of the Spitzer Space Telescope on the understanding of our solar system, think of what the steam engine meant for the industrial revolution.

A national team of scientists today published in the journal Nature Astronomy two papers that provide an inventory of the major discoveries made possible thanks to Spitzer and offer guidance on where the next generation of explorers should point the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) when it launches in October 2021.

“The Spitzer Space Telescope made many important discoveries in the solar system during its 16 year-long mission, and it is important to capture the highlights of these with useful references for future scientists to use in their research,” says Carey M. Lisse, from the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, lead author of one paper.

Lisse, a planetary astronomer, put together the team of 27 authors who penned the legacy papers. The authors were selected based on the significant discoveries they made using Spitzer during its 16-year mission. The team includes three University of Central Florida researchers, who offer suggestions for the next space telescope mission.

David Trilling, a planetary scientist and professor at Northern Arizona University, is the lead author on the second paper.

When Spitzer launched in 2003 it contained infrared detectors of unprecedented sensitivity, providing astronomers a never-before-possible look at the universe. Thanks to observations by Spitzer over the years, scientists gained new insights into, for example, the composition of comets, the icy surfaces of cold, distant bodies beyond Neptune, the heat radiation given off by asteroids, the extent of free-floating dust in the inner solar system, and the composition and properties of the atmospheres of Uranus and Neptune. Spitzer even managed to discover a new ring of Saturn! The much-delayed JWST, which will likewise study the infrared cosmos, is

Sharpness of star-forming image matches expected resolution of Webb Space Telescope — ScienceDaily

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NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is still more than a year from launching, but the Gemini South telescope in Chile has provided astronomers a glimpse of what the orbiting observatory should deliver.

Using a wide-field adaptive optics camera that corrects for distortion from Earth’s atmosphere, Rice University’s Patrick Hartigan and Andrea Isella and Dublin City University’s Turlough Downes used the 8.1-meter telescope to capture near-infrared images of the Carina Nebula with the same resolution that’s expected of the Webb Telescope.

Hartigan, Isella and Downes describe their work in a study published online this week in Astrophysical Journal Letters. Their images, gathered over 10 hours in January 2018 at the international Gemini Observatory, a program of the National Science Foundation’s NOIRLab, show part of a molecular cloud about 7,500 light years from Earth. All stars, including Earth’s sun, are thought to form within molecular clouds.

“The results are stunning,” Hartigan said. “We see a wealth of detail never observed before along the edge of the cloud, including a long series of parallel ridges that may be produced by a magnetic field, a remarkable almost perfectly smooth sine wave and fragments at the top that appear to be in the process of being sheared off the cloud by a strong wind.”

The images show a cloud of dust and gas in the Carina Nebula known as the Western Wall. The cloud’s surface is slowly evaporating in the intense glow of radiation from a nearby cluster of massive young stars. The radiation causes hydrogen to glow with near-infrared light, and specially designed filters allowed the astronomers to capture separate images of hydrogen at the cloud’s surface and hydrogen that was evaporating.

An additional filter captured starlight reflected from dust, and combining the images allowed Hartigan, Isella and Downes to visualize how the

The Hubble Space Telescope Observes Spectacular Supernova Time-Lapse

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Pictured here, in an image released on October 1, 2020, is part of the captivating galaxy NGC 2525. Located nearly 70 million light-years from Earth, this galaxy is part of Puppis’ constellation in the southern hemisphere. Together with the Carina and the Vela constellations, it makes up an image of the Argo from ancient greek mythology. On the left, a brilliant supernova is visible in the picture. The supernova is formally known as SN2018gv and was first spotted in mid-January 2018. The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope captured the supernova in NGC 2525 as part of one of its major investigations; measuring the expansion rate of the Universe, which can help answer fundamental questions about our Universe’s very nature. Supernovae like this one can be used as cosmic tape measures, allowing astronomers to calculate their galaxies’ distance. NASA/ESA/UPI

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NASA’s Hubble Telescope saw a gigantic, exploding star disappear into the void

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Hubble observed a supernova on the outer edge of spiral galaxy NGC 2525. 


NASA, ESA, and A. Riess (STScI/JHU) and the SH0ES team Acknowledgment: M. Zamani (ESA/Hubble)

Titanic, runaway thermonuclear explosion. A disappearing act. Nature’s atomic bomb. NASA sure knows how to describe a supernova, the final moments of a star’s existence.

Seventy-million light-years away in the scenic spiral galaxy NGC 2525, a white dwarf exploded and the Hubble Space Telescope witnessed its last days. NASA and the European Space Agency, which jointly run Hubble, released a rare time-lapse of the supernova’s fading brightness. 

The space telescope first started watching the supernova, named SN 2018gv, in February 2018. The time-lapse covers almost a year of Hubble observations.

The supernova initially outshone the other stars in its host galaxy. “When a star unleashes as much energy in a matter of days as our sun does in several billion years, you know it’s not going to remain visible for long,” NASA said in a statement on Thursday.

Hubble observed the supernova while scientists were working to better understand the expansion rate of the universe. “More than just providing celestial fireworks, supernovae can be used as milepost markers to measure distances to galaxies,” NASA said. “This yardstick is needed to calculate how quickly galaxies appear to be flying apart from one another, which in turn provides an age estimate for the universe.”

While supernovae are relatively common across the span of the universe, Hubble’s time-lapse gives us a rare peek at the dramatic process along with a poignant reminder that even stars aren’t permanent.

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