Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Horsehead Nebula

The “horsehead” is a dense cloud of interstellar dust and gas. Found throughout the universe, gas and dust fill the spaces between the stars. In some places they gather in great enough quantities to form a spectacular cloud, called a nebula. Dust in the horse’s “head” is so thick that it blocks light behind it. Dust and gas also make for the brilliant red color in the nebula. The blue color comes from dust that reflects the light of nearby stars.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Supernova Remnant

Rings of glowing gas are all that remain of a supernova explosion. While this star ended its life in a spectacular eruption of energy and material more than 170,000 years ago, light from the catastrophe didn’t reach Earth until 1987.
Once it burned bright in the sky and then faded to the glowing rings as shown in the picture.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Sombrero Galaxy

When viewed from the side, this spiral galaxy bulges in the middle like a sombrero, or Mexican Hat. Scientists suspect that a Black hole as massive as 1 billion Suns may lie at the galaxy’s center. Around its center lie billions of old, faint stars that form the enormous bulge of light.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Eta Carinae

When super massive star Eta Carinae exploded about 150 years ago, it became the brightest object in the sky. Eta Carinae released as much light as a supernova, but it managed to survive as a star. Today the debris stretches over a distance equivalent to the diameter of our solar system. Its outer edges are moving away from the center at about 1.5 million miles per hour.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Pleiades Star Cluster

Glittering like jewels in the night sky, the Pleiades is a cluster of new stars over 4000 light years from Earth. Though only a few are visible to us, the cluster contains hundreds of stars. The bluish glow that seems to surround the stars is a cloud of interstellar gas and dust, which scatters blue light from the stars. Different people have called the cluster “Seven Sisters”, “Bunch of Grapes”, and “Sailing Stars.”

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Megellanic Clouds

The Megellanic Clouds are part of the larger group to which our Milky Way galaxy belongs. These two galaxies are nearest to our Milky Way in space. They were discovered around 1520 by the Portuguese adventurer Megellan when he sailed through the southern areas. These clouds can be seen in the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere or near the equator as hazy glowing patches. Through a powerful telescope, they can be seen to contain millions of stars.
The large Megellanic cloud is about 10,000 million stars. The small Megellanic cloud is 2, 30,000 light years away and contains fewer stars. Both clouds contain bright nebulae where new stars are formed.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Types of Galaxies

There are three main kinds of galaxies:
1. Irregular Shaped,
2. Spiral with trailing arms of stars and nebulae
3. Elliptical.
The spiral and irregular galaxies have both old and young stars and reserves of gas and dust to make new stars. The special ones like our own galaxy Milky Way, has a centre which consists of red giants or dying stars while the new stars are formed in the dusty arms. Elliptical galaxies are supposed to be spiral galaxies that have lost their arms in due course of time. They consist mainly of red giant stars.

Admin says,
As we had an introduction to what is universe. Let me introduce some new terminologies which are unknown to common people in the next post.

Types of Galaxies(IMAGE)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Over a very long time and a great deal of thought, scientists developed a theory. Today many scientists think that there was a time before time when all matter, all energy, and all space was condensed into something the size of a pinpoint. This was our Universe in the moment before its birth. Then a huge explosion occurred, one that produced nothing but hot energy. In the first few minutes the universe expanded to 2,000 times the size of our Sun.

About 300,000 years later, when things cooled, atoms formed. The elements hydrogen and helium were created: Gravity brought them together in clumps. These clumps became the seeds of galaxies. Stars formed, including the Sun, our closest star. It took a long time for the universe to form. Scientists refer to the formation of the universe as the Big Bang theory. Other theories have also been offered, but the Bing Bang has the widest acceptance.

There were no eyewitnesses, so it’s impossible to be absolutely sure what really happened and we probably will never know. It’s unlikely that Big Bang theory, or any other theory, will ever be proved as fact. Our planets revolve around the Sun, and our Solar system moves along the spiral arms of our galaxy, the Milky Way. Gravity holds together this galaxy made up of billions of stars, dust, and gas. The Milky Way is just one of the millions of galaxies scattered across the universe. In between galaxies are enormous voids, or spaces full of nothing.


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