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Achilles
11-13-2008, 09:25 PM
For those of you that are interested in geeky stuff like this, the first images of a planet outside of our solar system were released today. We've been able to detect exo-planets for a while, but now that we're able to take pictures of some of them, I think things are about to get a lot cooler. Thank goodness the U.S. government decided to keep funding for Hubble :)

News article with small color image (http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2008/39/full/)
HubbleCast clip with artist renderings, etc (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQ6Ll91YKvM)

ET Warrior
11-14-2008, 12:20 AM
http://kepler.nasa.gov/

IG-64
11-14-2008, 12:49 AM
:D I love NASA. This is awesome.

Achilles
11-14-2008, 01:18 AM
http://kepler.nasa.gov/Wow. Thanks for the link. I'm a little bummed that I'm just now finding out about this.

IG-64
11-14-2008, 01:22 AM
Wow. Thanks for the link. I'm a little bummed that I'm just now finding out about this.
Me too. I knew they were looking, but I didn't know they've come so far as to take photos and everything.

ET Warrior
11-14-2008, 01:54 AM
Wow. Thanks for the link. I'm a little bummed that I'm just now finding out about this.My job right now is actually writing some of the ground control software for that mission, so I've known about it for the last 3 years. =)

Achilles
11-14-2008, 02:12 AM
*jealous*

Based on what I thought I had heard, I would've suspected that we'd be years away from even thinking about looking for anything smaller than Jupiter-sized planets.

leXX
11-14-2008, 10:39 AM
This is very exciting. I imagine soon enough we will have somewhat better images and be able to see what they look like instead of just specs. I'm really looking forward to it.

I think we have discovered around 290 extra-solar planets so far.

Pho3nix
11-14-2008, 01:36 PM
Makes you feel extremely humble.

IG-64
11-14-2008, 01:38 PM
My job right now is actually writing some of the ground control software for that mission, so I've known about it for the last 3 years. =)
So, wait, you work at NASA? Am I getting this right?

Achilles
11-14-2008, 04:58 PM
Makes you feel extremely humble.If that doesn't, this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7hsQA3wo3Q) will. Antares (third from last) is currently visible just before sunset in the Northern Hemisphere. :)

ET Warrior
11-14-2008, 05:23 PM
So, wait, you work at NASA? Am I getting this right?Nope.
http://kepler.nasa.gov/about/

almost at the bottom of the page...

Mission Operations Center at Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP)—University of Colorado

IG-64
11-14-2008, 06:47 PM
If that doesn't, this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7hsQA3wo3Q) will. Antares (third from last) is currently visible just before sunset in the Northern Hemisphere. :)
Booooooooooom. I lol'd on the rigel to betelgeuse part.
Nope.
http://kepler.nasa.gov/about/

almost at the bottom of the page...
Oh, well, it says NASA on the page so... close enough, it's still awesome. :p

leXX
11-14-2008, 07:18 PM
If that doesn't, this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7hsQA3wo3Q) will. Antares (third from last) is currently visible just before sunset in the Northern Hemisphere. :)

It's one thing to read all the facts and figures, but when you see them like that it really puts things in perspective.

MrWally
11-14-2008, 08:18 PM
I'm so small and insignificant.

:(

*sigh*

Achilles
11-14-2008, 09:04 PM
Booooooooooom. I lol'd on the rigel to betelgeuse part.My son observed both of them last week for the first time. He didn't lol.

...but he was impressed. :)

M@RS
11-14-2008, 09:38 PM
Ooooh, cool... :p I also thought we were quite a way from being able to do this kind of thing, but once again... NASA keeps pushing the limits. :)

Lance Monance
11-15-2008, 08:44 AM
If that doesn't, this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7hsQA3wo3Q) will. Antares (third from last) is currently visible just before sunset in the Northern Hemisphere. :)

http://www.universetoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/04/vycanis.png

Helps put things into perspective. :)

Achilles
11-15-2008, 10:41 AM
This (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/3b/Sun_and_VY_Canis_Majoris.png) is the one I prefer ;)

M@RS
11-15-2008, 11:33 AM
http://www.universetoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/04/vycanis.png

Helps put things into perspective. :)

This (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/3b/Sun_and_VY_Canis_Majoris.png) is the one I prefer ;)

:eek: Wow... VY Canis Majoris is HUGE... I knew we had gigantic stars out there, but I didn't think they got THAT big... Is it a Red Giant? It looks like it should be, but I'm not sure...

TiE23
11-15-2008, 08:50 PM
:eek: Wow... VY Canis Majoris is HUGE... I knew we had gigantic stars out there, but I didn't think they got THAT big... Is it a Red Giant? It looks like it should be, but I'm not sure...

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v123/Tie23/wondersoftechnology.jpg

Oh, the wonders of the internets.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VY_Canis_Majoris


VY Canis Majoris (VY CMa) is a red hypergiant star located in the constellation Canis Major. It is the largest known star and also one of the most luminous known. It is located about 1.5 kiloparsecs (or 5,000 light-years) away from Earth.

University of Minnesota professor Roberta M. Humphreys estimates the radius of VY CMa at 1800 to 2100 solar radii.[2] To illustrate, if our Sun were replaced with VY Canis Majoris, its surface would extend to the orbit of Saturn. Assuming the upper size limit of 2100 solar radii, light would take more than 8 hours to travel around the star's circumference. Dr. Humphreys recently estimated that the largest possible star is approximately 2,600 times the radius of the Sun.