Oh, Venus and other celestial bodiesPosted: June 2, 2012
I was searching around for a meaningful post for tonight. This is an open thread. It does have a theme but please don’t feel you have to follow it. However, if you want, please join in and makes some wishes and star contributions on my spacey thread.
Venus, the lovers’ planet, will slowly cross the face of the sun Tuesday in a rare passage that no sky watcher now alive will ever see again.
Astronomers call the event a transit of Venus; it last occurred more than a century ago, and another won’t be seen for 105 years.
Just as they did during the partial eclipse of the sun that enthralled throngs of viewers on May 20, amateur astronomers, observatories and Bay Area science museums will all have their special solar telescopes trained on the fabled planet as it makes its dark transit across the solar disc.
A day before the transit, on Monday, a very different astronomical event will be on display when the full moon will be partially eclipsed by the Earth’s shadow. No telescopes will be needed for the partial eclipse, and if skies are clear it should be visible everywhere. The moon will appear low in the western sky from 3 to 5:07 a.m., and the eclipse will peak at 4:03 a.m.
As mentioned previously, the discovery of the CMBR, redshifting, and the faster than expected recession of galaxies led astronomers and astrophysicists to theorize the Big Bang, which is currently accepted as the model for the formation of the universe. The Big Bang was not an explosion within space and time, but instead, the creation of spacetime from nothing. While implications for our role in the universe, the possible existence of other universes, and what, if anything, occurred before, are the subject of speculation, the Big Bang model has survived a variety of tests and scrutiny to become widely accepted. However, with the discovery of the CMBR, it was discovered that the temperature of the universe is widely uniform, which would be impossible through traditional thermal interactions (the concept of the universe being flat, homogeneous and isotropic is known as the cosmological principle). Thus, Inflationary Theory was introduced, which suggests that the universe started with extremely rapid exponential expansion, driven by a negative pressure energy (somewhat reminiscent of Dark Energy), but before inflation, the universe was causally connected and thus had a balanced temperature.
|Seconds before the Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of the The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out of work actor. Together this dynamic pair begin their journey through space aided by quotes from The Hitch Hiker’s Guide “A towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have” and a galaxy-full of fellow travellers: Zaphod Beeblebrox – the two-headed, three-armed ex-hippie and totally out to lunch president of the galaxy; Trillian, Zaphod’s girlfriend (formally Tricia McMillan), whom Arthur tried to pick up at a cocktail party once upon a time zone; Marvin, a paranoid, brilliant and chronically depressed robot; Veet Voojagig, a former graduate student who is obsessed with the disappearance of all the ball-point pens he has bought over the years.|
Have fun! It’s an open thread!!!