Interesting Astronomy Sites

a-black-hole

http://mcdonaldobservatory.org/news/releases/2012/1128.html

This may be one of the most massive black holes ever found!  Weighing in at 17 billion times the mass of our sun, and 11 times bigger in size than Neptune’s orbit! This massive behemoth takes up some 14% of its parent galaxy total mass, compared to the usual 0.1%, and resides some 220 million light years from us…

a-EtaCarinae

http://www.aavso.org/vsots_etacar

The above site is ‘The Association of Variable Stars.’  Go here to read a detailed study of this unusual star.  At some 8000 light years away, Eta Carina, a massive hyper-giant is some 5 million times brighter than our sun!  Now that’s bright!  There’s lots to explore on this site…

The Heart of a Rose

http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2010/rosette/

  • The Rosette Nebula is a star-forming region about 5,000 light years from Earth.
  • X-rays from Chandra reveal about 160 stars in the cluster known as NGC 2237 (right side of the image).
  • Combining X-ray and optical data, astronomers determined that the central cluster formed first, followed by neighboring ones including NGC 2237.
  • Examine this fascinating site with lots of detail and some breath taking photos.

a-planet

http://www.space.com/1311-triple-sunset-planet-discovered-3-star-system.html

This intriguing site at space.com, explores exoplanets and how they may survive in their various systems.  This is data about real planets they’ve found orbiting other star systems.  This one is particularly interesting because it has three stars; one would wonder why the planet isn’t ripped apart.  Find out why, at space.com.  After 10 years of exploration, they’ve uncovered a lot of data about this!  It’s well worth a boo…

All that is interesting

http://all-that-is-interesting.com/post/896793977/visualizing-the-size-and-scale-of-our-world

For those of you who can’t afford to clown around all day, this site is for you!  This page goes from the size of our Earth, to the size of our Sun, and then compares it to bigger and bigger stars until the sun just disappears by comparison!  It will absolutely blow your mind then how Hubble looks deeply into space revealing galaxies that contain trillions of stars!  The rest of the site looks worth exploring too.

a-Telescope

http://www.astrobuysell.com/paul/observatory/index.htm

For those of you interested in building their own observatory, this site takes you through a step by step process (in photos)…  I’ve always been interested myself, because it costs about $5000 to buy one, and they don’t look all that complicated to do.  In fact, if you already have a shed, they look surprisingly similar…  There’s a link at the bottom to the main page, if you’re interested in other amateur astronomy topics.

a-Old-galaxy

http://io9.com/5927315/hubble-has-spotted-an-ancient-galaxy-that-shouldnt-exist

This galaxy was made 10.7 billion years ago.  It just wasn’t thought that a galaxy so old, a galaxy made a mere 3 billion years after the beginning of the universe should have such perfect spiral structure.  They hypothesize that the small, irregular galaxy, at its upper right, may have something to do with it.  Other interesting articles can be found here as well…

 

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