Astronomy News, Astronomy Videos, Astronomy Books, Astronomy Twitter, and Astronomy Links ( Science - Physics - Astronomy )  

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  Hubble Space Telescope

The Hubble Space Telescope Science Institute has moved their news photo gallery to, while still maintaining another image archive at Hubble Heritage.

HubbleSite Gallery - Hubble Heritage Gallery - Recent Hubble News & Images

Hubble Space Telescope Search: You can search with their own engine from here, or search either HubbleSite OR Hubble Heritage via Google with the 2nd form below. Be specific; you will get many results.

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Google Hubble Space Telescope search:

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    The fifth and final Space Shuttle servicing mission (STS-125) to the Hubble Space Telescope was launched on May 12, 2009, and, after rendezvous, successfully captured the Hubble with the Shuttle's robot arm on May 13. Work on the Hubble, then 19 years old, was completed on May 18.

    During five EVAs, four members of the crew of the Shuttle Atlantis replaced much of Hubble's hardware, including the Science Instrument Control & Data Handler, batteries, and six gyroscopes. They also repaired the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph and the Advanced Camera for Surveys, and installed the Wide Field Camera 3 and the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph.
    Astronauts also installed a docking device which will permit a robotic spacecraft to latch onto Hubble after the telescope's work is complete and direct a controlled re-entry into the Pacific Ocean. The repairs and upgrades should keep the Space Telescope operating through at least 2014.

  Astronomical Image Galleries

Anglo-Australian Observatory - European Southern Observatory
Astronomy Picture of the Day, from Goddard Space Flight Center.

Views of the Solar System are photos with good text descriptions by Calvin J. Hamilton, describing the celestial bodies and environments making up our Solar System, including data on the sun, planets, asteroids, meteorites, comets, Oort Cloud, and Kuiper Belt.

NASA Planetary Photojournal displays images from NASA spacecraft.

  Virtual Observatories

NASA-JPL Eyes on the Solar System "is a 3-D environment full of real NASA mission data... See the entire solar system moving in real time." Use NASA Eyes to see the current position of the planets and planetary probe spacecraft. Similar to Google Earth, NASA Eyes requires a one-time free software download and installation.

Google Sky online, view sky in browser like Google Maps
WorldWide Telescope MS freeware, view sky on PC like Google Earth

The Virtual Astronomical Observatory makes it possible "for astronomical researchers to find, retrieve, and analyze astronomical data from ground- and space-based telescopes worldwide."

NASA GSFC SkyView is a virtual observatory that generates images of any part of the sky at wavelengths ranging from radio to gamma rays.

Sky View Café is a free Java applet that lets you use your web browser to see many types of astronomical information, in both graphical and numerical form. You can see which stars and planets will be visible tonight, how the next eclipse will look, or when the Moon rose ten years ago (from any point on the globe), and more.

  Astronomical Object Databases

Sloan Digital Sky Survey

Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS)

Faint Images of the Radio Sky at Twenty-cm (FIRST).

  Telescope Making

Amateur Telescope Maker's Resource List has links to and information about scopes and ideas, intended as a resource for both beginning and advanced amateur telescope makers. Beginners should also take a look at the Amateur Telescope Makers of Boston.

  Astronomy Freeware

Sky Chart 14.31 MB

Celestia 3-D sim 12 MB

Virtual Moon Atlas 13.6 MB

C2A planetarium 9.54 MB

Alpha Centaure
    planetarium 8.58 MB

  Astronomy Links

AstroWeb is a directory of about 3000 astronomy links from the University of Strasbourg, France. Unfortunately, it has not been updated since July, 2010.
    Starry Night is an interactive planetarium, virtual observatory, space flight simulator, time machine, intergalactic tour guide and much more. With Starry Night on your computer, you can explore a vast array of astronomical wonders, both natural and man made.
    From the youngest future astronaut to serious amateur observer or astro-photographer, Starry Night has a program to keep you actively engaged.
    If you want a full-color photograph of the entire night sky from any place on earth, the best observational tools and data, Starry Night Pro Plus is unbeatable.
    The Starry Night store also carries other astronomy software, DVDs & gifts.
Space@QuickScitech: NASA News | Orion-SLS | ISS | Intl Progs-LVs | Astronomy | Mars
Planets | Asteroids, Comets... | Shuttle | STS-107 | Apollo | NASA Subdomains | Gifts

KSC Countdown Online - KSC Video Feeds webcams galore
KSC - SpaceflightNow - Space Launch Report
JPL Space Calendar
KSC LAUNCH WEATHER: Spaceflight Meteo. Group: Launch Weather

  Black Holes

Black Hole FAQs are frequently asked questions about black holes (with answers, of course) from the sci.physics Usenet newsgroup.

While a black hole itself is tough to see, it makes a big obvious mess of the universe around it. Hubble Space Telescope Black Hole Images include a massive black hole at the center of the merged Centaurus A galaxy (NGC 5128) which is about 10 million light years away from Earth. The black hole is obvious from a huge twisted disk of hot gas that is funneling into it.

click to see larger photo
A twisted disk of hot gas funneling into the massive
black hole at the center of the Centaurus A galaxy.

Black holes emit large quantities of high-energy X-rays. So X-ray observatory satellites are used to study them:

    NASA's Chandra (launched 1999-07-23) is operated by the Harvard Chandra X-ray Center - Chandra Black Hole Images - Black Hole Field Guide - Info Center

    ESA's XMM-Newton (launched 1999-12-10) - JAXA's Astro-E2 (launched 2005-07-10).

Virtual Trips to Black Holes & Neutron Stars, from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, are descriptions and MPEG computer animations show what it would be like to travel to black holes or neutron stars.

Falling Into a Black Hole provides GIF animations of what it would actually look like to fall into a black hole.

Geometry Around Black Holes from The Official String Theory Web Site.

  Other Astronomy Websites

The website of Sky and Telescope has news, sky events info, tips articles for backyard astronomy and imaging, product review articles, downloads, and more.

The Astronomy Magazine website includes news, this month's "sky show", downloadable .pdf articles for beginners, software downloads, and several articles from back issues.

Imagine the Universe, from the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, is an educational site with tutorials and lesson plans on all aspects of astronomy.

Astronomy Workshop is an online astronomy lab, with information for beginners, and java applets to show orbital paths, impact results, etc.

The NASA Astrophysics Data System at Harvard is a bibliographical reference database of over 1.5 million astronomy and physics papers, with links to data and citations.

Earth's Magnetosphere is a non-mathematical tutorial about Earth's space environment of charged particles, with good information for all levels from high school to PhD.'s.

The SETI Institute says they are "to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe." While they are at it, they might Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence.

Historic Celestial Atlases on the World Wide Web links

  Astronomy Search

The DMOZ Open Directory searches for keywords in website titles and descriptions (not page content). You can limit your search to subcategories like Galaxies, Stars, Astrophysics, or Cosmology, or search all Astronomy or Science links.

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TIME Magazine, December 13, 1948:

Trouble on Palomar
    The 200-inch Hale telescope on Palomar Mountain is ailing. Installed last January, it has thus far taken no scientifically valuable photographs of the stars. Dr. Ira S. Bowen, director of the observatory, announced this week that it might not be in working order until next fall.

    The telescope's most serious trouble is a "bulge" in the massive mirror. The outer edge, 18 inches inward from the rim, is 20 millionths of an inch too high. This infinitesimal error, observable only by the most refined tests, is enough to make the telescope useless for serious astronomical purposes...

    When the mirror left the optical shop in Pasadena, observatory authorities knew that its edge was "high", but they counted on the supports to correct the fault. The bulge turned out to be too big for the supports to handle...

For more on Mount Palomar and Edwin Hubble, see Astronomy Articles

  NASA Books (NASA Special Publications) & Other Astronomy Books Online

Some of the books below are Adobe .pdf files, which are nice for reading materials offline. If you would like to read NASA's .html online books, like most of those below, when you are offline, you can "harvest" the pages and images for free using HTTrack, a very useful freeware website capture and offline browsing tool. HTTrack also works well with groups of .pdf files linked to from a page or directory.

Handbook of Space Astronomy and Astrophysics Zombeck, Cambridge (1990)

Cosmology: A Research Briefing NRC report (1995)

The Foundations of Celestial Mechanics Collins (2004) 11 .pdf files

The Fundamentals of Stellar Astrophysics Collins (2003) 18 .pdf files

Images of the solar upper atmosphere from SUMER on SOHO
    Battrick (2003) 12 .pdf files

Evolution of the Solar System SP-345 (1976)

Chondrules and their Origins papers (1983)

Origin of the Moon conference papers (1984)

LPI Ranger Photographs of the Moon
text & images from SP-61, SP-62, SP-63, SP-111, & SP-112, (1964-66)
two 4.6 MB .pdf files & many jpegs

LPI Lunar Map Catalog

LPI Consolidated Lunar Atlas

LPI Lunar Orbiter Photographic Atlas of the Moon 675 photos + annotations

LPI Apollo Image Atlas
    almost 25,000 lunar images, + earth, astronauts & hardware

Basaltic Volcanism on the Terrestrial Planets (1981)

Planetary Geology in the 1980s SP-467 (1985)

Atlas of Mercury, SP-423 (1978), from Mariner 10 images

Magellan: The Unveiling of Venus JPL 400-345 (1989)

The Martian Landscape SP-425 (1978)

LPI Geologic Map of Mars
  Viking Orbiter Views of Mars SP-441 (1980)

Voyager 1 and 2 Atlas of Six Saturnian Satellites SP-474 (1984)

The Star Splitters: The High Energy Astronomy Observatories SP-466 (1984)

Project Orion: A Design Study
    of a System for Detecting Extrasolar Planets
SP-436 (1980)

Life in the Universe CP-2156 (1981)

The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence SP-419 (1977)

Man's Place in the Universe:
    A Study of the Results of Scientific Research
    in Relation to the Unity or Plurality of Worlds
Wallace (1903)

Fundamental Numerical Methods and Data Analysis Collins (2003) 10 .pdf files

The Virial Theorem in Stellar Astrophysics Collins (1978) 6 .pdf files

De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium
    (in Latin) Nicolaus Copernicus (1543) 7 .pdf files

Astronomię Instauratę Mechanica (in Latin) Tycho Brahe (1602) 35 .pdf files

Annals of the Astronomical Observatory of Harvard College, Volume VIII

Annals of the Astrophysical Observatory
    of the Smithsonian Institution Volume I

Core List of Astronomy Books Bryson (2003)

Core List of Astronomy and Physics Journals Bryson (2003)

over 100 NASA online books are listed on the NASA News page

  Free Astronomy Books (.pdfs)

The New Heavens George Ellery Hale 1922
10 Years Work (Mt. Wilson) G E Hale 1915
Astronomy Handbook Harold Jacoby 1913
Mathematical Astronomy Barlow & Bryan 1903
Outlines of Astronomy J F W Herschel 1902
A Few Astronomical Instruments photos 1900
Handy Book of Astronomy Lynn 1901

Astronomy With the Naked Eye Serviss 1908
Astronomy Without a Telescope Maunder 1904

Annals v96 Harvard Observatory 1921
Popular Astronomy v24 Goodsell Obs. 1916

Acceptance of Copernicus Stimson 1917
A History of Astronomy Walter W Bryant 1907
19th Century Astronomy Clerke 1902
A Short History of Astronomy Berry 1899
The Starry Messenger Galileo Galilei

  Free Telescopes Books

The Telescope: Optical Principles Nolan 1904
The Achromatic Telescope William Simms 1852
Pleasures of the Telescope GP Serviss 1901
The Telescope & Microscope Thomas Dick 1852

  Free Lenses, Optics & Light Books

Light for Students Edser 1921
Theory of Optical Instruments Gleichen 1921
Outlines of Applied Optics Nutting 1912
Thick-Lens Optics Arthur Latham Baker 1912
The Theory of Light Maclaurin 1908
Light Waves & Their Uses Michelson 1903
Lenses & Systems of Lenses Pendlebury 1884
Wave Theory of Light Huygens, Fresnel...
Opticks Isaac Newton 1730

  Free Moon Books

...History of Apollo... W Compton 1996 online only
The Moon in Mod. Astronomy P Fauth 1909
Lunar Science: Ancient & Modern T Harley 1886
The Moon's Rotation Examined T Tyerman 1885
The Moon Edmund Neville Nevill 1876
The Moon Richard Anthony Proctor 1873

  Free Lunar Theory Books

...In the Motion of the Moon Newcomb 1907
Mechanics of the Moon Robert Schindler 1906
On the Lunar Theory Hugh Godfray 1885

  Free Eclipse & Solar Eclipse Books more

Story of Eclipses George Frederick Chamber 1904
Math. Theory of Eclipses R Buchanan 1904
Total Eclipse of the Sun 1869-08-07 USNO
Total Solar Eclipse 1870-12-22 USNO
1900 Solar Eclipse Expedition Smithsonian
Total Solar Eclipse of 1905 BAA

  Free Sun Books

The Sun Charles Greeley Abbot 1911
The Sun's Place in Nature J Norman Lockyer 1897
The Sun Charles Augustus Young 1895
The Story of the Sun Robert Stawell Ball 1893
Contributions to Solar Physics J N Lockyer 1874

  Free Solar Spectrum Books

Solar Spectrum Wave-Lengths HA Rowland 1898
Chemistry of the Sun J Norman Lockyer 1887
Sunbeam and Spectrascope H Townsend 1864

  Free Solar Radiation Books

On the Sun's Radiation Frank Hagar Bigelow 1918
Researches on Solar Heat Langley 1884
Sunspottery John A Westwood Oliver 1883

  Free Solar System Books

Story of the Solar System G F Chambers 1912
Solar System: Recent Obs. CL Poor 1908
The Solar System: Lectures Percival Lowell 1903
Order of the Solar System J P Nichol 1842

  Free Planet & Planetary Theory Books

Ways of the Planets Martha Evans Martin 1912
Astronomical Discovery Herbert Hall Turner 1904
The Procession of Planets F H Heald 1901
Elements of the 4 Inner Planets Newcomb 1895
Math... of Planetary Motions Otto Dziobek 1892
The Planetary Theory C H H Cheyne 1883
Methods of Computing Orbits N Bowditch 1834

  Free Venus Books

Transit of Venus 1882-12-5&6 E C Pickering
Transits of Venus Richard Anthony Proctor 1878
The Transit of Venus George Forbes 1874

  Free Mars Books

Preventing the Forward Contamination of Mars
    2006 online only
Mars William Henry Pickering 1921
Mars as the Abode of Life Percival Lowell 1908
Is Mars Habitable? Alfred Russel Wallace 1907
Mars and Its Canals Percival Lowell 1906

  Free Jupiter Books

Observations of Jupiter Sells, Cooke... 1913

  Free Saturn Books

Saturn and Its System Richard A Proctor 1882

  Free Neptune Books

Discovery of Neptune Benjamin A Gould 1850
The Planet Neptune John Pringle Nichol 1848

  Free Stars & Constellations Books

Easy Guide to the Constellations Gall 1910
...Stellar Evolution George Ellery Hale 1908
The Stars Simon Newcomb 1906
Astro. Spectrum-Photog. Henry Draper 1884
Geography of the Heavens Burritt 1856

  Free Double Stars Books

The Binary Stars Robert Grant Aitken 1918
Double Star Astronomy Thomas C Lewis 1908
Relative Masses of Binary Stars Hadley 1905
Handbook of Double Stars Edward Crossley 1879

  Free Variable Stars Books

Observations of Variable Stars W J Luyten 1921
Research... Stellar Photometry Parkhurst 1906
Dimensions of Fixed Stars E C Pickering 1880

  Free Parallax Books

Determinations of Parallax Henry N Russell 1911
Parallax of Lyrae and 61 Cygni USNO

  Free Nebulae Books

The Nebulae Archibald Edward Garrod 1882
Architecture of the Heavens J P Nichol 1850

  Free Cosmography & Cosmology Books

The Earliest Cosmologies William F Warren 1909
Earths in Our Solar System E Swedenborg 1909
Man's Place in the Universe A R Wallace 1903
Cosmos Alexander von Humboldt 1868

  Free Nebular Hypothesis Books

The Earth's Beginning Robert Stawell Ball 1903
Nebulo-Meteoric Hypothesis H W Pearson 1902
Kant's Cosmogony Immanuel Kant

  Free Celestial Mechanics Books

Intro to Celestial Mechanics F R Moulton 1914
Mathematical Works George William Hill 1906
Mathematical Tracts George Biddell Airy 1858
The System of the World Pierre S Laplace 1830
Principia Mathematica Isaac Newton Latin
Principia Mathematica Isaac Newton English

  Free Astrophysics Books

The Astrophysical Journal v55 Jan-Jun 1922
Study of Stellar Evolution George E Hale 1908
Problems in Astrophysics Agnes M Clerke 1903
Astronomy & Astrophysics v12 1893
Intro to Physical Astronomy Thomas Luby 1828

  Free Spherical Astronomy, Practical
Astronomy & Geodetic Astronomy Books

Manual of Field Astronomy Andrew Hall Holt 1916
Field Astronomy for Engineers Comstock 1908
Compendium of Spherical Astro. Newcomb 1906
Spherical & Practical Astronomy Chauvenet 1900
Elements of Practical Astronomy Campbell 1899
Geodetic Astronomy John Fillmore Hayford 1898

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