Watch the new Michael Moore movie Planet of the Humans for free…

Today is Earth Day and thanks to Covid-19 the planet has been getting a rest recently from the ravages of human damage. There is a popular theory in computer circles that as Artificial Intelligence gets more clever it will eventually realise that the best way to save the planet is to kill all the humans. As I typed that sentence I realised that is also the plot of the Terminator Movie… Anyway Michael Moore has a new movie out and …

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An EPIC View of the 2017 Solar Eclipse

Wondrous images, from a million miles out in space, from NASA’s Earth Polychromatic Imaging Camera (EPIC) of the shadow of the moon crossing over North America on Aug. 21, 2017.  EPIC is aboard NOAA’s Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR), photographing the full sunlit side of Earth every day.  [Image credit: NASA EPIC Team. Video credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/Katy Mersmann] Pete Baker

A bit of perspective…

…with this stunning composite image of the Earth and its moon, courtesy of the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. [Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona] From the associated text This composite image of Earth and its moon, as seen from Mars, combines the best Earth image with the best moon image from four sets of images acquired on Nov. 20, 2016, by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Each …

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Another view…

Vote… don’t vote…  In the meantime, here’s another in an occasional series of wondrous views from the International Space Station, via the Nasa Crew Earth Observations videos – Sunglint over the Ocean.  [Video courtesy of the Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center] This video was taken by the Expedition 47 crew on board the International Space Station. The sequence of shots was taken on March 25, 2016 from 11:45:02 to 11:57:17 GMT on a pass over …

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ISS Night-time Compilation

A brief musical interlude, accompanied by a selection of wondrous time-lapse videos, old and new, from the International Space Station, by NASACrewEarthObs.  Full-screen mode recommended.  Enjoy! [Credit: Image Science and Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center.] The final video clip shows the surprisingly robust sun-grazing Comet Lovejoy as it emerged triumphant from its close encounter with Sol in December 2011. Pete Baker

In case you missed the eclipse…

Or, like me, cloud cover obscured the solar eclipse of 20 March 2015.  Here’s probably the best view of this morning’s event, from ESA’s Sun-watching Proba-2 mini-satellite.  [Image credit: ESA/ROB] And via ESA on YouTube. As Europe enjoyed a partial solar eclipse on the morning of Friday 20 March 2015, ESA’s Sun-watching Proba-2 minisatellite had a ringside seat from space. Orbiting Earth once approximately every 100 minutes, Proba-2 caught two eclipses over the course of the morning. Proba-2 used its SWAP imager …

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Stargazing the 20 March 2015 Solar Eclipse

The BBC’s Stargazing Live returns tonight, 8pm BBC 2, with three consecutive nights of live programmes to coincide with the total solar eclipse on Friday 20 March 2015.  [It is an annual series! – Ed].  Stargazing Live is, yes.  Not necessarily total solar eclipses, though.  And this solar eclipse is the only one, total or otherwise, to be visible from Europe for the next few years.  ESA’s mini-satellites will have a better view.  But not as good a view as this…   The BBC …

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Time-lapse: Earth

As the Guardian’s GrrlScientist says, “Wow. Just wow.”  And, “Oh, I recommend “full screen” mode.” Indeed. Adds – If you watch closely you can see Ireland and the UK pass underneath at around 2mins 30secs in. Time-Lapse | Earth from Bruce W. Berry Jr on Vimeo. Video credits Music: “Manhatta” composed and performed by The Cinematic Orchestra. (All rights reserved to their respective owners.) Film clips collected and edited by Bruce Berry. Images courtesy of the Image Science & Analysis …

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“There’s no place like home…”

I didn’t ‘Wave at Saturn’ on 19 July when the Cassini probe, orbiting the gas giant, was taking a high-definition image of the view back home.  I don’t think it encouraged a proper sense of perspective…  But the resultant image is stunning. [Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute] It’s not the first time Cassini has looked home.  Nor is it the only stunning image the probe has provided.  But, as those involved pointed out “We can’t see individual continents or people in this …

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Comet 2013 A1: Rendezvous with Mars…

Here’s something to think about whilst waiting to see if Comet ISON will fizzle, or sizzle.  The latest Science at Nasa video looks at the trajectory, and consequences for Mars missions, of Comet 2013 A1 (Siding Spring).  Discovered as recently as 3 January this year, this Oort cloud object will pass “extraordinarily close” to the planet Mars on 19 October 2014 – an actual collision, although unlikely, has not been ruled out yet [1:2000].  It’s estimated that an impact of the ~1-3 km-wide Comet 2013 A1, travelling at around …

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Further Up Yonder

Stunning views of the Earth accompany this seasonal message from the crew of the International Space Station. Pete Baker

Black Marble Earth

As the BBC’s Spaceman, Jonathan Amos, notes This [above] spectacular night-time view of Earth is called Black Marble. It has been assembled from a series of cloud-free images acquired by one of the most capable satellites in the sky today – the Suomi spacecraft. Here is the associated, wondrous, video from Nasa Explorer This view of Earth at night is a cloud-free view from space as acquired by the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership Satellite (Suomi NPP). A joint program by NASA and …

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“awe, curiosity, wonder, joy, amazement”

After a brief scientific explanation of the phenomena, this video from LittleSDOHMI delivers some wondrous recent views (March 3, 4 and 10) of the Aurora Australis from the International Space Station.  With music! [Video credit: NASA ISS/JSC/ Science@NASA] And here are those stunning clips by themselves. [All videos courtesy of the Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center (http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/Videos/CrewEarthObservationsVideos/)] From Kenya to the Aurora Australis This video was taken by the crew of Expedition 30 on board the International …

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“…and marvel at the solar system in motion”

Here’s a date to mark in your diary [really? – Ed].  On the 5/6 June this year one of the rarest predictable astronomical events will occur – a transit of Venus.  [Can’t wait… – Ed]  Since the invention of the greatest human innovation, the telescope, at the beginning of the 17th century, not by Galileo, there have been only 7 such transits.  And, although the last one was in 2004, the next will not happen until 11 December 2117. [I’ll catch it then! …

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“Look again at that dot.”

As Curiosity heads to Mars, and Voyager continues to go boldly further than ever, the BBC reports on some speculative assessments of potentially habitable locations elsewhere in the galaxy.  A timely reminder, then, from the Guardian’s GrrlScientist of our pale blue dot in this short video tribute to Carl Sagan. Carl Sagan (1934-1996), Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space [1997: Amazon UK; Amazon US]. From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any …

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Wow, indeed.

Via Tom Chivers at the Telegraph blog. [Video courtesy of the Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center] This video was taken by the crew of Expedition 29 on board the International Space Station. The sequence of shots was taken October 18, 2011 from 07:09:06 to 07:27:42 GMT, on a pass from just south of Alaska to eastern Cuba. The camera used for this imagery was north-facing, so the Aurora Borealis stay visible throughout the video. Lights from …

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“a special perspective of our role and place in the universe…”

Three weeks into its journey to our friend and lord, Jupiter, Nasa’s Juno spacecraft has taken a look back at its home planet [on the left] and its natural satellite, the Moon.  [Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech] From the Nasa press release “This is a remarkable sight people get to see all too rarely,” said Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. “This view of our planet shows how Earth looks from the outside, illustrating a special …

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Space Shuttle Time Lapse

Stunning time lapse footage from orbit with the Space Shuttles Discovery and Atlantis foregrounding a magnificent view.  Via the NasaExplorer channel.   Segment 1: NASA’s Shuttle Discovery (STS131), while docked to the ISS, captured these images on April 12, 2010 as it moved from the night side of the Earth to the daytime. In the process the Aurora Borealis can be seen on the Earth’s limb. A solar panel from the ISS and a docked Soyuz module can be seen in …

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Totality begins…

…at 8.22pm [BST].  That’s tonight’s lunar eclipse and totality will last for 100 minutes – until 10.02pm [BST].  But it’s not, as the Irish Times claims Ireland’s “first lunar eclipse for five years.”  It is special however.  It’s a central total lunar eclipse – the center point of Earth’s shadow will fall on the moon – which explains the unusually long duration. It could be as spectacular as the 2007 total lunar eclipse, which Sammy Morse captured in the featured image above.  Or it …

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