Among the most striking features in the image are the rich colors of the clouds moving toward the Great Red Spot. This huge anticyclonic storm is roughly the diameter of Earth and is rolling counterclockwise between two bands of clouds that are moving in opposite directions toward it.
As with previous images of Jupiter taken by Hubble, and other observations from telescopes on the ground, the new image confirms that the huge storm which has raged on Jupiter’s surface for at least 150 years continues to shrink. The reason for this is still unknown so Hubble will continue to observe Jupiter in the hope that scientists will be able to solve this stormy riddle. Much smaller storms appear on Jupiter as white or brown ovals that can last as little as a few hours or stretch on for centuries.
The worm-shaped feature located south of the Great Red Spot is a cyclone, a vortex spinning in the opposite direction to that in which the Great Red Spot spins. Researchers have observed cyclones with a wide variety of different appearances across the planet. The two white oval features are anticyclones, similar to small versions of the Great Red Spot.
The Hubble image also highlights Jupiter’s distinct parallel cloud bands. These bands consist of air flowing in opposite directions at various latitudes. They are created by differences in the thickness and height of the ammonia ice clouds; the lighter bands rise higher and have thicker clouds than the darker bands. The different concentrations are kept separate by fast winds which can reach speeds of up to 650 kilometers per hour.
These observations of Jupiter form part of the Outer Planet Atmospheres Legacy (OPAL) program, which began in 2014. This initiative allows Hubble to dedicate time each year to observing the outer planets and provides scientists with access to a collection of maps, which helps them to understand not only the atmospheres of the giant planets in the Solar System, but also the atmosphere of our own planet and of the planets in other planetary systems.
NASA’s new Artemis Program identity revealed.
We go now to the Moon, not as a destination, but as a proving ground for all the technology, science, and human exploration efforts that will be critical for missions to Mars. On the lunar surface we will pursue water ice and other natural resources that will further enable deep space travel. From the Moon, humanity will take the next giant leap to Mars.
NASA has led the charge in space exploration for 60 years, and as we mark the 50th anniversary of the first Moon landing, the agency is preparing for its next giant leap with the Artemis program.
Artemis, named after the twin sister of Apollo who is also the Goddess of the Moon and the hunt, encompasses all of our efforts to return humans to the Moon – which will prepare us and propel us on to Mars. Through the Artemis program, we will see the first woman and the next man walk on the surface of the Moon. As the “torch bringer,” literally and figuratively, Artemis will light our way to Mars.
With this in mind, NASA is unveiling the new Artemis program identity, a bold look that embodies the determination of the men and women who will carry our missions forward. They will explore regions of the Moon never visited before, unlock mysteries of the Universe and test the technology that will extend the bounds of humanity farther into the Solar System.
This new identity draws inspiration from the Apollo program logo and mission patch. Using an “A” as the primary visual and a trajectory from Earth to the Moon, we honor all that the Apollo program achieved. However, through Artemis we will forge our own path, pursue lunar exploration like never before, and pave the way to Mars.
With Earth Blue, Rocket Red and Lunar Silver for colors, every part of the identity has meaning:
- THE A: The A symbolizes an arrowhead from Artemis’ quiver and represents launch.
- TIP OF THE A: The tip of the A of Artemis points beyond the Moon and signifies that our efforts at the Moon are not the conclusion, but rather the preparation for all that lies beyond.
- EARTH CRESCENT: The crescent of the Earth at the bottom shows missions from humanity’s perspective. From Earth we go. Back to Earth all that we learn and develop will return. This crescent also visualizes Artemis’ bow as the source from which all energy and effort is sent.
- TRAJECTORY: The trajectory moves from left to right through the crossbar of the “A” opposite that of Apollo. Thus highlighting the distinct differences in our return to the Moon. The trajectory is red to symbolize our path to Mars.
- MOON: The Moon is our next destination and a stepping stone for Mars. It is the focus of all Artemis efforts.
It is possible to get images of the International Space Station (ISS) that show more than a beautiful, bright streak across the night sky. Outside of the spit-second timing of shooting the ISS’s silhouette against the Sun or Moon, one rarely sees images of the station as it moves across the starry night sky. “I thought I’d take advantage of Friday night’s (August 2, 2019) brilliant pass and try a still photo of the station,” wrote photographer and CAA member James Guilford. “I’d actually been wanting to try this for some time. Getting focus right turned out not to be as difficult as getting the exposure right and the darned thing was just brilliant — I overexposed by possibly two stops. While I lost out on station details but for some solar panels, I did pick up some background stars! This was my second try at a still image. Third time’s the charm?”
Here’s the equipment list and exposure info:
- Canon EOS 7D Mark 2
- Canon EF400 FL Telephoto Lens (The camera’s cropped sensor makes the 400mm the close equivalent to a 600mm lens.)
- Shutter: 1/1,600 sec.
- Aperture: f/5.6
- ISO: 4,000
- Finally: Heavily cropped, exposure adjusted in Photoshop
How was the camera guided? “The camera and lens were handheld and hand-tracked” he explained. “My experience with photographing birds and dragonflies in flight helped!”
The target is very small and moves quickly across the sky. Guilford wrote, “Much is made of the fact the ISS spans a space about the size of a football field but you’re trying to photograph that football field from more than 250 miles away! It. Is. Small.”
- Shot an approx. 22-minute star trail between 11:30 and Midnight (100 – 13 second shots at ISO 3200).
- Edit out dozens of airplanes – probably all but a handful of the shots had multiple planes flying by.
- Foreground is made of 45 images median stacked equaling about a nine-minute exposure.
- Nikon D850
- Tamron 15-30mm @ 15mm, f /2.8
- Post done in Sequator, StarTrails.exe, Lightroom, and Photoshop
This image was captured by the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association’s member Lonnie Dittrick. The astrophotographer reports it took “fifty-two 90-second light frames over two nights (fighting waning gibbous moon and smoke from Canada)” from his backyard in Northeastern Ohio.
“The North America Nebula (NGC 7000 or Caldwell 20) is an emission nebula in the constellation Cygnus, close to Deneb (the tail of the swan and its brightest star). The remarkable shape of the nebula resembles that of the continent of North America, complete with a prominent Gulf of Mexico.” — Wikipedia
The August 12, 2019 meeting of the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association (CAA) will host featured speaker Anne Kugler, Professor of History, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, and Director of the M.A. in Humanities, John Carroll University. Dr. Kugler’s talk titled, “Madame du Chatelet and the Origins of Science,” will describe how the Scientific Revolution challenged everything Europeans understood about humans and the natural world. The Enlightenment shaped how this new field of “science” was practiced in the social environment. The example of Madame du Chatelet shows how the development of physics and astronomy were grounded in the cultural context of eighteenth-century France.
The CAA’s monthly meetings are held on the second Monday of every month (except December) at 7:30 PM at the Rocky River Nature Center; 24000 Valley Parkway; North Olmsted, Ohio, in the Cleveland Metroparks. Meeting programs are open to the public. Following the presentation and a brief social break, the club will conduct its membership business meeting.