July 20, 2021
Thor not only has his own day (Thursday), but a helmet in the heavens. Popularly called Thor’s Helmet, NGC 2359 is a hat-shaped cosmic cloud with wing-like appendages. Heroically sized even for a Norse god, Thor’s Helmet is about 30 light-years across.
In fact, the cosmic head-covering is more like an interstellar bubble, blown with a fast wind from the bright, massive star near the bubble’s center. Known as a Wolf-Rayet star, the central star is an extremely hot giant thought to be in a brief, pre-supernova stage of evolution. NGC 2359 is located about 15,000 light-years away toward the constellation of the Great Overdog.
This remarkably sharp image is a mixed cocktail of data from broadband and narrowband filters, capturing not only natural looking stars but details of the nebula’s filamentary structures. The star in the center of Thor’s Helmet is expected to explode in a spectacular supernova sometime within the next few thousand years.
The Apollo sextant was used in Earth and lunar orbit, as well as while en route between Earth and the Moon. It played different roles in each of those contexts: in orbit around Earth or the Moon, the sextant could be used to compute the spacecraft’s altitude and position; whereas in transit between Earth and the Moon, it could be used to compute the spacecraft’s attitude (orientation), position, and velocity. A proper attitude during the flight to and from the Moon was critical for accurate course corrections and burns to reach the Moon and correctly insert the spacecraft into the desired lunar orbit. The device was used repeatedly throughout the Apollo program across many phases of the missions, up to and including re-entry.
Pretty impressive advanced technology! Also shows how the basics will never be outdated.
Source: Navigating to the Moon — Remembering the Apollo Sextant
“In the nearly hour-long home visit, the assistant director told Hope that the trip that her family took to observe the solar eclipse wouldn’t be counted as school time. The school official also belittled her ability to educate her children, stating that even as a professional educator he wasn’t qualified to teach his own children at home,” the report said.
This ‘school official’ is human excrement. I AM qualified to teach anyone anything I know. This includes home schooling my kids, or any kids, through high school. I am a high school graduate. If you aren’t qualified to teach what you know, then your high school diploma is worthless and you should sue your school district.
Source: State to homeschoolers: Watching eclipse not educational
On August 21, 2017, a total solar eclipse will arrive mid-morning on the coast of Oregon. The moon’s shadow will be about 70 miles wide, and it will race across the country faster than the speed of sound, exiting the eastern seaboard shortly before 3 p.m. local time. It has been dubbed the Great American Eclipse, and along most of its path, there live almost no black people.
The eclipse is racist!
(Hat tip: Bayou Renaissance Man
Source: Racial History in the Solar Eclipse Path of Totality – The Atlantic
Some daily sky events among the ever-changing Moon, planets, stars and constellations, from Sky & Telescope magazine, the essential guide to astronomy.
Source: This Week’s Sky at a Glance, March 3 – 11 – Sky & Telescope