What created this unusual hole in Mars?
The hole was discovered by chance in 2011 on images of the dusty slopes of Mars’ Pavonis Mons volcano taken by the HiRISE instrument aboard the robotic Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter currently circling Mars. The hole appears to be an opening to an underground cavern, partly illuminated on the image right. Analysis of this and follow-up images revealed the opening to be about 35 meters across, while the interior shadow angle indicates that the underlying cavern is roughly 20 meters deep. Why there is a circular crater surrounding this hole remains a topic of speculation, as is the full extent of the underlying cavern. Holes such as this are of particular interest because their interior caves are relatively protected from the harsh surface of Mars, making them relatively good candidates to contain Martian life. These pits are therefore prime targets for possible future spacecraft, robots, and even human interplanetary explorers.
Here are two pictures with different angles on the big news today:
I pledge allegiance, to the pants of the United Slacks of America and to the button for which it holds…
Millefiori No. 01 (2012) Ferrofluid is a magnetic, hydrophobic liquid that forms colorful curves and channels when deposited onto a magnet and injected with watercolor paints. More starting at 5:20 in Oefner’s talk.
Formally trained in art and design, Oefner says that he has always been interested in science. Though he can’t pinpoint the exact moment when he became interested in pairing his two loves, he views both pursuits as inextricably linked by a crucial bond: “The most important quality of science or art is curiosity,” Oefner tells the TED Blog. “That’s what keeps me going and always finding something new.”
On the TED stage, Oefner demonstrates the science at work behind three of his photographs. As he explains his process, the mystical quality of the images gives way to understanding. But how important to him is it that the casual viewer of his artwork know the underlying scientific principles? Actually, not very. “I’m not too didactic about my work. If people just want to appreciate it for its beauty, that’s absolutely fine,” he tells us. “And if I present it without an explanation, people tend to come up with their own, which is often even more poetic.”
For an imagination-friendly, explanation-free viewing of Oefner’s work, watch the first 45 seconds of his talk. For viewers who’d rather forego the poetry in favor of learning, here are 10 close-up views of Oefner’s fascinating work – and, just as fascinatingly, how he made it. This gallery includes works from series both new and old (the first three are the examples featured in the talk), inspired by everything from scientific papers to household chores.
“I’ve seen things you other gnomes wouldn’t believe…
Tiger lilies, like fire in the morning light.
Dew glittering on the hinges of the garden gate.
All these things… will be lost… like…
snails… in the rain.“
A dramatic, fresh impact crater dominates this image taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter on Nov. 19, 2013. Researchers used HiRISE to examine this site because the orbiter’s Context Camera had revealed a change in appearance here between observations in July 2010 and May 2012, bracketing the formation of the crater between those observations.
The crater spans approximately 100 feet (30 meters) in diameter and is surrounded by a large, rayed blast zone. Because the terrain where the crater formed is dusty, the fresh crater appears blue in the enhanced color of the image, due to removal of the reddish dust in that area. Debris tossed outward during the formation of the crater is called ejecta. In examining ejecta’s distribution, scientists can learn more about the impact event. The explosion that excavated this crater threw ejecta as far as 9.3 miles (15 kilometers).
While vacationing on the Maldives Islands, Taiwanese photographer Will Ho stumbled onto an incredible stretch of beach covered in millions of bioluminescent phytoplankton.
Another year has gone by and left us with a stack of incredible, mind-blowing pictures of space. We’ve gathered the best of 2013′s images of stars, galaxies, planets, and nebulas into our second WIRED Space Photo of the Day collection.
We’re celebrating with a gallery of our favorites from among the 365 we hand-picked every day this year. Highlights include young stars being born in the Large Magellanic Cloud, new views of both the Andromeda Galaxy and Horsehead Nebula, and the achingly beautiful picture of Saturn above. Here’s to another amazing year of space photos and the never-ending wonder of the universe.
It’s not everyday you get to see a familiar face in a new light. The Horsehead Nebula, one of the most famous celestial objects, is known for its black color. But here we get to see it in infrared wavelengths, making visible many typically invisible features. As NASA wrote:
Looking like an apparition rising from whitecaps of interstellar foam, the iconic Horsehead Nebula has graced astronomy books ever since its discovery more than a century ago. The nebula is a favorite target for amateur and professional astronomers. It is shadowy in optical light. It appears transparent and ethereal when seen at infrared wavelengths.
this was taken in this bar called Le Nid (The Nest) which is on the 32nd floor of a building called Tour Bretagne in Nantes (France).
I don’t know why they have so many of those chairs. One should be un oeuf!
One of the greatest facets of reddit are the thriving subreddits, niche communities of people who share a passion for a specific topic. One of the Sifter’s personal favourites is r/ColorizedHistory. The major contributors are a mix of professional and amateur colorizers that bring historic photos to life through color. All of them are highly skilled digital artists that use a combination of historical reference material and a natural eye for colour.
When we see old photos in black and white, we sometimes forget that life back then was experienced in the same vibrant colours that surround us today. This gallery of talented artists helps us remember that
Below you will find a collection of some of the highest rated colorized images to date on r/ColorizedHistory.
It’s like a postcard gone wrong: This stunning photo showing the beach in Marsa Matrouh, Egypt, with the city on fire in the background, was reportedly taken on Wednesday, the day the violent crackdown on Egyptian protesters began by state police and military officials wich has now claimed the lives of over 500 people.
Hundreds were killed across Egypt today as security forces stormed the two protest camps in Cairo filled with supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi. Violence erupted in streets throughout the capital city and the country. A one month state of emergency across the country was declared and the interim vice president resigned. ( 27 photos total)
An Egyptian woman tries to stop a military bulldozer from hurting a wounded youth during clashes that broke out as Egyptian security forces moved in to disperse supporters of Egypt’s deposed president Mohamed Morsi in a huge protest camp near Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque in eastern Cairo on August 14. (Mohammed Abdel Moneim/AFP/Getty Images)
Color and black-and-white images of Earth taken by two NASA interplanetary spacecraft on July 19 show our planet and its moon as bright beacons from millions of miles away in space.
NASA’s Cassini spacecraft captured the color images of Earth and the moon from its perch in the Saturn system nearly 900 million miles (1.5 billion kilometers) away. MESSENGER, the first probe to orbit Mercury, took a black-and-white image from a distance of 61 million miles (98 million kilometers) as part of a campaign to search for natural satellites of the planet.
In the Cassini images Earth and the moon appear as mere dots — Earth a pale blue and the moon a stark white, visible between Saturn’s rings. It was the first time Cassini’s highest-resolution camera captured Earth and its moon as two distinct objects.
When Swiss photographer Gus Petro took a trip to the United States last year, he was struck by the juxtaposition of “emptiness and density.”
Petro is used to seeing plains and mountains (staples of Switzerland’s landscape), but massive skyscrapers in the same country? “One is so full and the other so empty,” he says. “One goes up, the other down.”
Petro came up with a clever way to highlight this phenomenon during his visit to the Grand Canyon, one week after seeing New York City. The “contrast between the two was so strong and overwhelming that I had to express it somehow,” he says. So he created a photo project he calls Merge.
(more pictures at the link)
Take a picture of Saturn in the sky tonight. You could capture a view like this one. Recorded just last month looking toward the south, planet Earth and ruins of the ancient temple of Athena at Assos, Turkey are in the foreground. The Moon rises at the far left of the frame and Saturn is the bright “star” at the upper right, near Virgo’s alpha star Spica (picture with labels). If you do take a picture of Saturn or wave at Saturn and take a picture, you can share it online and submit it to the Saturn Mosaic Project. Why take a picture tonight? Because the Cassini spacecraft will be orbiting Saturn and taking a picture of you.
I can’t believe they built ‘m this close to the city! How did they get that pushed through the zoning committee?
An eerie sight at SFO on Monday, July 8th as Asiana Airlines flight 214 lands on runway 28R, right behind where the wreckage of Asiana Flight 214 from July 6th still rests off to the side of runway 28L.
Lava tubes are natural conduits through which lava travels beneath the surface of a lava flow, expelled by a volcano during an eruption. They can be actively draining lava from a source, or can be extinct, meaning the lava flow has ceased and the rock has cooled and left a long, cave-like channel. Lava tubes are formed when an active low-viscosity lava flow develops a continuous and hard crust, which thickens and forms a roof above the still-flowing lava stream. Tubes form in one of two ways: by the crusting over of lava channels, and from pahoehoe flows where the lava is moving under the surface.
The lava tube cave known as Buri, is situated in Leitahraun-lava field on Reykjanes peninsula. The eruption that formed the Leitahraun-lava field was massive and therefore the lava tube cave Buri is massive.
Buri is probably the most prized of all the Icelandic lava tube caves. Bjorn Hroarsson vulcanospeleologist discovered Buri the 7th of may 2005 and that find was considered one of the more remarkable discoveries in Speleology in Iceland for the last 1000 years. Buri is over one kilometer long and has a great width but is difficult to trek.