danspace77 DIAMONDS IN THE SKY

Image Credit & Copyright: Me.
Here's a couple beautiful double stars from last night. The wide pair is Albireo in Cygnus and it's pretty close at 430 light years away.
The tight pair is Almach in Andromeda and they're about 350 light years away. The blue star actually has two even smaller unseen stars orbiting each other as they orbit it.
Imagine being on any planets around these colorful pairs?
I don't always spike my stars. But when I do, it's to show off the color contrast.
12h

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danspace77 EXTRA LARGE LUNAR ECLIPSE IN SEPTEMBER

Illustration credit & copyright: Time And Date. For the full story with phases, times and links hit the blog DanSpace77.com.
It’s time for the final lunar eclipse of 2015 (And final total lunar eclipse for the U.S. until 2019.) and it occurs on the night of Sunday, September 27, 2015 and the early morning hours of Monday, September 18 2015. For a few days, we will strip the #Eclipse hashtag away from teen love stories, cars and bubble gum and return it to the universe.

WHO CAN SEE IT?: This eclipse will be visible throughout the entire Atlantic region and most of the bordering countries. The America’s, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and some of Asia will be treated to a lunar eclipse.

Observers in the Eastern U.S., all of South America, Western Europe and Western Africa will be treated to a total lunar eclipse.

GENERAL INFO: If you line in the U.S. and Canada this will be the final total lunar eclipse until January 2019 so you want to see this one!

This lunar eclipse will also be the second of three-full supermoon’s in 2015 and the biggest (closest) of the three. What’s that mean? Not a whole lot but technically it will be one of the biggest lunar eclipses you will ever see and even if you can’t truly tell the difference, it’s still pretty awesome.

The two (2) Lunar Eclipses this year also end what’s called a “Tetrad” which is four (4) consecutive Total Lunar Eclipses. There are eight (8) Tetrads in the 21st century and this one (2014/2015) is the second in the series with the next series beginning in 2032.
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danspace77 Public Service Announcement!
Mt. Washington Observatory Image:
In the New England area? @mwobs and astronomer John Gianforte will be hosting an astronomy workshop on October 10.
https://www.mountwashington.org/educational-programs/workshops.aspx
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danspace77 ARIZONA PERSEIDS
Credit & Copyright: Dylan Martin @dylmarphoto.
Let’s unveil yet another great image from this month’s Perseids meteor shower. This one was shot by Dylan Martin on the early morning hours of August 13, 2015 at the beautiful, Tucson Mountain Park.

In this image the Milky Way and the Perseids share the stage as the Moon was kind enough to stay clear for this particular show. I have never been to this location but the beautiful desert landscape is just fantastic. At 20,000 acres, and containing 63 miles of non-motorized trails, this is no small park. I’m going to have to put this one on my “to-do” list as well. So many beautiful locations around the world, it’s a shame of you don’t get out and explore it from time to time.

I hope you all enjoy this image and check out more of Dylan’s work.
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danspace77 SPECTACLE AT JOSHUA TREE

Image Credit & Copyright: Sean Parker @seanparkerphotography.

Rolling right along in my personal 2015 Perseid Meteor Shower favorites is this incredible catch from Sean Parker while in Joshua Tree National Park. This image was captured on August 8th and knowing that new moon week wasn’t until the following week, this is a great illustration of the strength of this particular shower as the Moon was still 30% illuminated at the time.

For those of you that may not know what Joshua Tree National Park is, it’s definitely worth learning about and of course, go visit! It’s a nearly 800,000 acre region of the California desert near Twentynine Palms and is home to some of the most beautiful desert landscapes you will ever see. Not only that, it’s a favorite for night sky photographers in the region.

I hope you all enjoy this great image from Sean and if you do go visit his pages for other great imagery. Get out there and visit our national parks, protect our national parks and protect our night skies.
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danspace77 CRAWFORD NOTCH PERSEIDS
Image Credit & Copyright: Matt Milone @nightmutephoto.
I’m going to show off a few more 2015 Perseid Meteor Shower images and this one comes from Matt Milone and it’s from a place I know very well; Crawford Notch, New Hampshire in the White Mountain National Forest.

In this great image you see the night sky ablaze with meteors over the old 140 year-old Maine Central Railroad, Mountain Division Line tracks which are now home to the “Notch Train.” In the near distance is the rugged terrain of Mt. Willard which if you ever get the chance I recommend hiking. It’s an easy climb with a million dollar view of the Notch.

Awesome capture and seeing all these images makes me want to take a clear night off of work and get back out there myself.
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danspace77 FLASH POINT

Image Credit & Copyright: Brad Goldpaint @goldpaintphoto.
For those of you lucky enough to have dark skies with clear skies overhead last week were treated to the best meteor shower of the year as the 2015 Perseids streaked across our night skies. What made this show great was not just the volume of meteors, which was around 50-ish; but also the fact that the Moon sat this one out. That big floodlight in the night sky is famous for washing away meteor showers through the year so the fact that this one occurred during new moon week presented a great opportunity to see a great show.

This image by Brad is a composite of about 65 meteors he captured on August 13 between 00:30 to 04:30 (AM) from Mount Shasta CA. The mountain itself is the centerpiece in the image off in the distance with the glow from the town of Mount Shasta illuminating the base of the mountain.

How you get from a night of imaging to a final image isn’t as simple as you may think. Here’s some technical information from the image in Brad’s own words. And remember, that’s why it’s so important to give proper credit to the night sky images that we all love so much. The time, money and effort that goes into a night sky capture is truly remarkable and it’s something you won’t find yourself doing unless you truly love it. “I subtracted the meteors from the images that contained them throughout the 4 hour period. Due to the Earth’s rotation, the meteors were not in the correct location once overlayed with the single background image. To find where the meteors originated from in relation to the background image, I used Polaris (North Star), Capella, Pleiades, Mirphak, Double Cluster, and the constellation Perseid to triangulate their position.” – Brad Goldpaint
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danspace77 Goodbye Dione! Cassini snapped this image of Saturn's moon Dione after its final flyby of the rocky moon on August 17, 2015. At close approach Cassini was as close as 295 mi (474 km). At bottom you can see the circular Evander crater which is 220 mi. (350 km) in diameter. 2w

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danspace77 August 18, 2001: One of my favorite spaceflight images. STS-105 astronaut Daniel Barry on Discovery's Remote Manipulator System (RMS) arm over sunset on Earth below. Just incredible. 2w

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danspace77 JAXA TO LAUNCH ISS RESUPPLY MISSION THIS WEEKEND

Image Credit & Copyright: Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). Full story w' full size images and launch links on DanSpace77.com.

On Wednesday, August 19, at 11:30 UTC (07:30 EDT & 20:30 JST) the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) will be launching the Mitsubishi heavy lift H-2B F5 (H-IIB F5) rocket carrying the HTV5 or Kounotori-5 cargo vehicle on a resupply mission to the International Space Station (ISS) from Launch Area-Y2 (Also known as Area-Y2 or LA-Y2) at the very beautiful Tanegashima Space center (TNSC), Japan. The launch of an H-IIB rocket is a treat because along with the massive rocket sound the rocket literally screams through the air creating an almost eerie moment. The HTV is also, at least to me, the most visually appealing of all the Space Station supply ships.
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danspace77 Happy Perihelion Day! Comet 67P with ESA's Rosetta spacecraft is at its closest point to the Sun in its current orbit. Now, before we get too excited, perihelion is still 185,986,924 km from the Sun & 265,138,407 km from Earth. Translated; its closest point to the Sun is still somewhere between the orbits of Earth and Mars so although we're seeing quite a bit of activity from the comet, it's probably not going to become too much more active than it has been the past few weeks.
#Rosetta #ESA #Perihelion2015 #67P
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danspace77 VISITOR AT THE VLT

Image Credit & Copyright: ESO/Alex Tudorica.

What a beautiful image of the Very Large Telescope (VLT) at Paranal in Chile’s Atacama Desert. As you look at the detail in the night sky, you notice that you don’t see the vast plane of the Milky Way. You do however see a beautiful meteor streak overhead as well as some very familiar friends that those of us here in the Northern Hemisphere are starting to see every morning which lets us know that fall is on the way.

Let’s begin at the left side of the image, just left of one of the four main VLT telescopes. That smudge that slightly resembles a small, distant meteor itself is actually Messier 31 (M31), the Andromeda Galaxy. You soon realize that you’re looking at a 9 billion year old mass roughly twice the diameter of the Milky Way which contains nearly a trillion stars at a distance of 2.5 million light years. Or to put it another way, that’s what it looked like 2.5 million years ago. We can view the nucleus without a telescope but if we could see the entirety of Andromeda it would span 6 full moon widths on our night sky. Also remember, that the two of us are on a collision course and in 4.5 billion years, the two monster galaxies will collide. There’s a great opportunity to illustrate the distance between stars here. It’s believed that when the Milky Way and Andromeda collide and more than a trillion stars merge; that no two stars will collide. The distances between stars are still far enough apart to make this a rare, even unlikely event and that to me is simply amazing.
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danspace77 Here's another one from last night but this one was facing south so much of the Milky Way showed up well. This image is 100% IG processed. Eventually I will learn how to actually process Milky Way images and who knows. Maybe I'll repost someday as a comparison. Have a great Monday. 3w

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danspace77 Here's one from last night while hunting Perseids. Still a couple mornings from peak but wanted to take advantage of the clear skies. Saw quite a few but they apparently weren't as bright as I thought because none showed up in the images. 3w

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danspace77 August 9, 1990: Another favorite NASA image of mine from the Space Shuttle era. Pretty rare image too as two Shuttles are in the same frame and in very close proximity. STS-38 Atlantis (right) parked outside the VAB after rollback as STS-35 Columbia leaves for rollout to the launch pads. 3w

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danspace77 THE NIGHT CALLS

Image Credit & Copyright: Justin Dodson @the_power_of_failing.
Here’s an incredible image from an equally incredible photographer (day & night), Justin Dodson out of the beautiful state of Arizona. It’s nights like these, when I see that the sky is mostly clear and the air is calm, that I watch the sunset through the “blue hour” of twilight with great anticipation of what the night sky may have in store this night.

First to appear are the bright planets of Venus and Jupiter and eventually the universe beyond our block appears. The Milky Way will soon rise and cross the sky with its core planted firmly due south as we roll along its plane. If you’re lucky enough to be in a dark sky location or ambitious enough to travel out to one, the universe will rarely disappoint.

Thanks to Justin for sharing this tremendous image and please, as always check out more of his work.
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danspace77 CRIMSON SKIES

Image Credit & Copyright: ESO/Babak Tafreshi.

Babak Tafreshi captures Christoph Malin imaging the Atacama skies on a cold desert night. This region captures our imaginations and you can almost imagine yourself as a Martian explorer wandering the landscape after we’ve colonized it. The lights of civilization glow from afar and somewhere, up in the night sky would be Earth, our first home masked in the glow of the Milky Way, our star city.

Until the day that becomes reality, we enjoy images like this. Images that can take us from one location and transport us across space and time to somewhere we may in fact, never experience. Once again; just a terrific image as always by the European Southern Observatory (ESO) crew.
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danspace77 Here's your daily dose of amazing! Here's an image from the #DSCOVR satellite of the Earth as the Moon crosses its field of view, revealing it's fully lit far side. Yes, this is a real image.
NASA/NOAA DSCOVR satellite is parked 1 million miles away in the L1 Lagrange Point between the Sun and Earth for a 24/7/365 view of Spaceship Earth.
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danspace77 Hey all, been an amazingly busy couple weeks but no worries, still trying to get out and capture the night when I get a minute.
Here's a quick 3 minute #ISS pass tonight during twilight. #SpotTheStation
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danspace77 CITY ON THE RISE

Image Credit & Copyright: Jaxson Pohlman @jaxsonpohlmanphotography.
This beautiful image by Jaxson Pohlman is art-like in its presentation as the light of the Milky Way galaxy reaches high above the plains; a single tree stands alone as if to over watch the area.

With images like these it’s easy to immerse yourself in the image and allow yourself to take on a sense of feel for what you’re seeing. I can imagine standing here as a light breeze blows through; the tree wavering lightly, almost dancing with the long grass. It’s clear at the moment but the smell of moisture in the wind foretells much needed rain is in the forecast.

If you look near the core of the Milky Way, just above and right of the tree actually. Can you find the Dark Horse?

Thanks to Jaxson for sharing this image and be sure to check out more of his work.
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