This could be NASA's most exciting mission--ever. The space agency announced yesterday that they will send a heliocopter to Titan, Saturn's largest moon. Titan is in many ways more like Earth than any other place in the solar system. It has rivers and lakes, a thick atmosphere, and organic compounds that could support the genesis of life. The quad-chopper, named "Dragonfly," will fly between sites on interest, covering more than twice the distance of every Mars rover combined. Get the full story from nasa.gov.
MIT Technology Review; Fri, 21 Jun 2019 18:43 UTC
The Tibetan Plateau is a vast elevated plain almost five kilometers above sea level, sometimes called the Roof of the World. It is bordered to the south by the world's highest mountain range and to the north by desert lands. It is one of the most isolated places on Earth.
But the extreme altitude makes it a useful place for scientists. In 1990, they built an observatory here to study the showers of subatomic particles that rain down from the upper atmosphere whenever it is hit by a high-energy cosmic ray. This work is better done at high altitude because there is less atmosphere to absorb the particles.
Since then, the so-called Tibet Air Shower Array has recorded vast numbers of high-energy cosmic rays, particles accelerated to huge energies by astrophysical phenomena such as supernovas, active galactic nuclei, and mysterious as-yet-unidentified sources.
But the array also picks up air showers caused by a different source - high-energy photons. These mysterious photons are also created by astrophysical phenomena such as the interaction between high-energy particles and the cosmic microwave background. Consequently, they can provide a unique insight into these processes and the environments in which they occur.
Over the years, the Tibet Air Shower Array has spotted plenty of these photons with energies up to dozens of teraelectronvolts (TeV 1012). That's roughly equivalent to the highest-energy photons that can be created on Earth. But nobody has ever observed more powerful photons.
Until now. Today, researchers from the Tibet Air Shower Gamma Collaboration say they have observed photons with energies above 100 TeV for the first time, including a remarkable photon with an energy of almost 500 TeV. This single photon has about the same energy as a falling Ping-Pong ball and is the highest-energy photon ever recorded.
The collaboration has also worked out where these photons are coming from: the Crab Nebula, the remnants of a supernova that occurred in 1054 AD in the Perseus Arm of the Milky Way, some 6,500 light-years from Earth.
.... read more at https://www.sott.net/article/415559-Earth-hit-by-highest-energy-photons-ever-recorded-from-the-Crab-Nebula
Noctilucent clouds are supposed to be electric blue, yet during the extreme NLC outbreak of June 1st, some observers in Europe saw a different color: red. "It happened around midnight," reports Marek Nikodem of Szubin, Poland. "The top of the clouds developed a reddish-purple canopy." It didn't last long, but he was able to photograph the amber crown before it faded away:
Above: Red and blue noctilucent clouds over Szubin, Poland. Credit: Marek Nikodem
"What creates this color?" The answer is ozone--or rather, lack thereof.
Research in the 1970s revealed that much of the sunlight hitting noctilucent clouds first passes through Earth's ozone layer. Ozone absorbs red light, while allowing blue to pass--hence the usual color of the clouds. When the sun is hanging very low, however, reddened sunlight refracted through the dense troposphere can paint the tops of NLCs red, overwhelming the usual "ozone blue."
Above: Mostly red noctilucent clouds over Piwnice, Poland. Credit: Piotr Majewski
Last night in Texas, a flurry of red sprites exploded from the top of a powerful thunderstorm. One of the the red forms was so tall and bright, it was witnessed by naked-eye observers 200 miles away in Oklahoma. "My boys and I saw it with our unaided eyes," marvels Paul Smith, who photographed the event from the shores of Lake Thunderbird, OK. This may be the first time that a sprite's reflection has been captured in water:
Naked-eye sightings of sprites are rare, mainly because they are so fleeting. But this one left an impression. "My eleven-year-old son Thomas described it as a 'huge orange-y-brown flash of lines high in the sky,'" says Smith. "My seven-year-old James just exclaimed 'what the heck was that?'"
At first glance, Smith's capture resembles a Gigantic Jet--that is, a type of "sprite on steroids." But lightning expert Oscar van der Velde of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya thinks it may be something else, equally exotic.
"In early days of sprite research, they were called 'palm trees' by researchers from the University of Alaska," van der Velde explains. "It is, basically, a bushy group of red sprites on top, with a secondary purple discharge hanging below. These types of events are quite rare. You need a big, active mesoscale convective system to produce them."
Palm tree sprites are a topic of cutting edge research. "We haven't even been able to confirm that they indeed originate from the thundercloud," says van der Velde.
"Last night was so much fun," adds Smith. "In addition to the sprites, my son Thomas photographed Jupiter and our Moon with the Nikon coolpix 80x zoom camera. We also saw a nice bolide exploding over the storms. The kid's reactions were priceless."
Today is the June solstice--the longest day of the year in the northern hemisphere, and the shortest day in the south. The exact moment of the solstice is 11:54 am EDT, when the sun reaches its highest declination on the celestial sphere (+23.5o). Northern summer and southern winter are underway. Wherever you live, happy solstice!
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.... a star exploded. Light from the supernova reached Earth in May 2019 following a journey of 110 million years across the cosmos. Astronomers saw it--a tiny bloom of light on the edge of lenticular galaxy NGC5353--and immediately began to monitor its light curve. Then this happened:
Bill Williams of the Chiefland Astronomy Village in Florida created the composite image. "It shows my photo of the supernova on May 15th (left), one week before the launch of SpaceX's Starlink satellites, alongside a similar photo taken at the Lowell Observatory after the launch (right)", explains Williams. The difference is, Starlink ruined the Lowell Observatory image.
SN2019ein is a Type 1a supernova. It happened when matter from one star fell onto another--a nearby white dwarf, pushing the mass of the dwarf over the threshold for a supernova explosion. This special kind of supernova is a "standard candle", which cosmologists have used to show that the expansion of the universe is accelerating. Monitoring the light curves of Type 1a supernova literally helps us understand the fate of the cosmos.
"To me, as a dedicated observer of the night sky for over 50 years and an avid underwater photographer, satellite megaconstellations such as Starlink are the equivalent of polluting our oceans with plastics", notes Williams. "I hope we take every measure possible to mitigate the effects of satellite light pollution of our night skies."
The International Astronomical Union seems to agree. Read their statement here.
The biggest storm in the solar system is shrinking. Since mid-May, Jupiter's Great Red Spot has contracted a startling 3000 km, reducing the size of the anti-cyclone by nearly 20%. This 10-day movie created by Marco Vedovato of the JUPOS Project shows what's happening:
Enormous rivulets of red gas are streaming away from the storm as it spins. "This is something we've never seen before," says Vedovato, who assembled the animation by stitching together images from nearly a dozen amateur astronomers.
Experienced observers say the storm is "getting a new shape every day" in a "dramatic metamorphasis" as the Red Spot "appears to be unravelling."
"The JUPOS Project manages the largest Jupiter database in the world," says Vedovato. "So far we have collected more than 1 million measurements, including old images and drawings from the 18th century, allowing us to plot very precise trends in the Great Red Spot." This plot, for instance, shows the sudden decrease in the storm's diameter since early May.
Jupiter rising over Bluff, Utah. Photo credit: Paul Martini
Consider it a case of perfect timing. Jupiter is about to make its annual closest approach to Earth--"only" 641 million km away on June 12th. Proximity makes the planet big and bright, shining almost four times brighter than Sirius, the brightest star in the sky. Astrophotographers are getting a fantastic view of the GRS.
Finding Jupiter is easy. Look southeast at midnight. Jupiter is located in the constellation Ophiuchus, the brightest object around: sky map.
June 3, 2019: From Kryon Book Nine: The New Beginning
Co-creation is not done in a closet. It involves moving through life, giving intent, and an interface of energy with everyone you touch – everyone you come in contact with – those you shine your light around. What kind of planning do you think that takes? It’s on a scale that has no time and yet all time. There is a planning part of you and also every other Human Being on the Earth, on the other side of the veil. Perhaps you had this idea that there was a planning session before you got here and now you’re on your own? No. How does that make you feel, Human Being – angel – divine one? There is a piece and part of you on the other side of the veil that is co-ordinating with others for synchronicity, for co-creation, and for your intent.
~ KRYON, through Lee Carroll, the Original Kryon Channel
You’re likely familiar with the works of Steve Cutts, a London-based illustrator who aptly depicts our daily grievances and society’s many shocking truths that we absurdly accept as normal. In his most recent animation short titled “Happiness”, Steve uses rats to symbolize the rat race we’re all so familiar with.
You’ll soon see other startling similarities — a clearly depressed, overcrowded society surrounded by ads guaranteeing happiness via cologne, clothes, film and drugs. You may watch this and recognize these behaviours in others, but consider whether you have fallen victim to them as well.
“Feeling down? Nothing a glass of red wine won’t fix.” When we search for happiness in external things, we soon have a real problem that nothing material or external can fix. See, all that is ever offered to us are ‘quick fixes’ to problems that have been festering for years. Steve accurately portrays our need for feeling happy and shows we will do and buy practically anything to ensure we can feel that emotion all the time — a futile struggle that leaves us depleted and miserable.
In the incredible animation below, listen to Jim Carrey as he discusses fear, presence, who we truly are and how we can choose to make decisions in life.
May 27, 2019; From Kryon Book Thirteen: The Recalibration of Humanity
Old Ways Don’t Work
The Humans who are invested in the darkness as their reality will realize after a while that the old ways don’t work anymore. Watch for this as well. There will be those who try to recreate race war. But what might have worked 40 or 50 years ago is going to fall on its face because fewer will join in this than before. Old leaders will be shocked that so few wish to cooperate.
~ KRYON, through Lee Carroll, the Original Kryon Channel
A minor interplanetary shock wave hit Earth on May 26th at approximately 22:00 UT. The CME-like disturbance was unexpected. It caused the density of the solar wind around Earth to abruptly quadruple, while the interplanetary magnetic field doubled in strength. Minor geomagnetic storms are possible on May 27th as our planet passes through the shock wave's wake.
May 13, 2019: From Kryon Book Nine: The New Beginning
You Are Not Alone
"Perhaps you had this idea that there was a planning session before you got here and now you’re on your own? No. How does that make you feel, Human Being – angel
– divine one? There is a piece and part of you on the other side of the veil that is
co-ordinating with others for synchronicity, for co-creation, and for your intent."
~ KRYON: through Lee Carroll, the Original Kryon Channel
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