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(Smithsonian Magazine)   These pictures of the solar system's planets are so spectacular, you won't even mind the slideshow   (smithsonianmag.com) divider line 47
    More: Cool, space missions, Hubble Space Telescope, Carnegie Institution, Julia Child, Smithsonian, degrees Fahrenheit, mercury, courier  
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9104 clicks; posted to Geek » on 21 Sep 2009 at 11:03 PM (5 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2009-09-21 11:06:34 PM  
wow! Wish they had bigger pics, several of those would be my Desktop!
 
2009-09-21 11:07:57 PM  
Yes, subby, those are indeed spectacular.
 
2009-09-21 11:11:17 PM  
The sunset on Mars is beautiful.
 
2009-09-21 11:18:37 PM  
God, those pictures of Mars might as well be taken from the San Rafael Swell formation in Utah
 
2009-09-21 11:18:39 PM  
Drakuun: wow! Wish they had bigger pics, several of those would be my Desktop!

They're probably all available as hi-res in here somewhere:
http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/index.html (new window) happy hunting!
 
2009-09-21 11:19:15 PM  
Awesome pictures indeed, but why such a small resolution for them?
 
2009-09-21 11:22:14 PM  
ABQGOD: The sunset on Mars is beautiful.

+1

If anyone finds a high-res pic of that, it'll be my new wallpaper.
 
2009-09-21 11:26:05 PM  
 
2009-09-21 11:26:09 PM  
My favorite is the back-lit Saturn and rings.
In hi-res at APOD: Link (new window)
 
2009-09-21 11:26:46 PM  
Bah, I've seen spectacularer.

/Not really, those are awesome!
 
2009-09-21 11:26:51 PM  
Drakuun: wow! Wish they had bigger pics, several of those would be my Desktop!

You can find most of them at higher resolution on NASA's website.

Heres a high resolution Io:

Link (new window)http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/jpeg/PIA02308.jpg

They don't make them all that easy to find, but if you hunt around you can find lots of them.
 
2009-09-21 11:28:01 PM  
wow
wow
wow

wow

wow



wow

wow


wow
 
2009-09-21 11:29:54 PM  
Orbital Mechanics is just a theory.

/wow
 
2009-09-21 11:31:56 PM  
One more thing about the Martian sunset -- 'shop a second sun on there, and you've got a dead ringer for Tatooine.
 
2009-09-21 11:34:00 PM  
jonasborg: sunset?

Right-click, set as background. Thanks a bunch!
 
2009-09-21 11:41:40 PM  
wow...I literally got chills looking at some of those.
 
2009-09-21 11:47:03 PM  
No shemale vids? For shame, Fark.
 
2009-09-21 11:59:52 PM  
Very very cool ;)
 
2009-09-22 12:01:01 AM  
I'd be a bit more impressed if any of those pics were less than a decade old.
 
2009-09-22 12:04:40 AM  
Wow, indeed.
 
2009-09-22 12:09:14 AM  
Pxtl: bhcompy: God, those pictures of Mars might as well be taken from the San Rafael Swell formation in Utah

You don't know the half of it. A lot of people complain that NASA is cranking up the red-channel on pictures from the Martian surface so that it will look like we expect it too - red sky, red soil

Auto-levels in Photoshop.


I thought there was a white reference point on the probes that was used to calibrate, not false color like from the different filters on the Hubble to show infrared etc. What is autolevels supposed to show? Photoshop calculates the levels based on normal pictures. If I take a picture in a room with a red light on and then use autolevels to make it look normal, it doesn't change the fact that the room was really originally red.
 
2009-09-22 12:17:27 AM  
I am just amazed at the beauty of the natural world, and just how big space really is. After all, "Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is."

But yeah, these photos are sometimes breathtakingly beautiful.
 
2009-09-22 12:24:20 AM  
 
2009-09-22 12:31:31 AM  
Anyone else get just a little tense seeing those images of massive solar flares? Makes you realize it wouldn't take much to turn the earth into a big hunk of charcoal.
 
2009-09-22 12:48:00 AM  
k-rock: Anyone else get just a little tense seeing those images of massive solar flares? Makes you realize it wouldn't take much to turn the earth into a big hunk of charcoal.

For me it's just another reason we should declare stars our destination.
 
2009-09-22 01:12:30 AM  
I present to you, the most scrumptulescent photographs ever to have been captured by the human eye, in all of history. Photographs so truly epic and revolutionary that I can hardly move. These photographs will literally take your breath away, while simultaneously making you question whether they were taken by god himself.

Is that what you were aiming for, subby?
 
2009-09-22 01:17:55 AM  
The Martian Sunset and the full view of Saturn from the other side of the Sun are both breathtaking.

That being said, hey science, let's get some rovers on Europa eh? Does anyone realize how amazingly cool that would be if we drilled into that ice crust and found a whole ecosystem underwater on another planet/moon?

If they do grant multiple lifetimes, dear God let me be able to see that.

Or imagine being on a moon of Saturn and having that planet filling up most of your night sky as your "moon."

Thinking deeply about outer space makes me feel awesome and totally insignificant at the same time.
 
2009-09-22 01:29:37 AM  
I would really love a high-res of this one, if anyone knows where I can find one.

It really amazes me for some reason:

media.smithsonianmag.com
 
2009-09-22 02:01:29 AM  
RosevilleDan: I would really love a high-res of this one, if anyone knows where I can find one.

It really amazes me for some reason:


I'd say merry Christmas, but only in black & white here. (nb: 6.7MB)
 
2009-09-22 02:12:36 AM  
InferiousX: Or imagine being on a moon of Saturn and having that planet filling up most of your night sky as your "moon."

img87.imageshack.us

What Saturn may look like right now in the skies over Rhea. Right Now.
(sorry for the crappy composition... Celestia was being wonky, so I grabbed what I could)

/oh, Celestia, how I love thee
 
2009-09-22 03:14:30 AM  
InferiousX:
That being said, hey science, let's get some rovers on Europa eh? Does anyone realize how amazingly cool that would be if we drilled into that ice crust and found a whole ecosystem underwater on another planet/moon?


I would be surprised if we cracked open Europa and didn't find it teeming with life.
 
2009-09-22 03:29:21 AM  
RosevilleDan: I would really love a high-res of this one, if anyone knows where I can find one.

It really amazes me for some reason:


Here's one showing tire tracks as we leave it behind.
 
2009-09-22 03:30:00 AM  
XMark: I would be surprised if we cracked open Europa and didn't find it teeming with life.

It's too cold for life there.
 
2009-09-22 03:39:19 AM  
Alien Robot: XMark: I would be surprised if we cracked open Europa and didn't find it teeming with life.

It's too cold for life there.


Not necessarily. We know next to nothing what internal conditions are like. If the hypotheses of a sub-surface liquid water ocean are correct AND if there is any kind of geological activity such as hydrothermal vents AND if there is enough energy and the right materials to make organic molecules and concentrate them, then there is the chance that life could have evolved there and is still there. There is also the chance, if you want to go the panspermia route, that life, even in the form of single-celled bacteria like organisms, seeded the planet from without (I'd bet various of Earth's extremophiles and even not-so-extremophiles could live there). There is, of course, also the chance that there is no life there at all, nor even the organic precursors to life as we know it.

The only way to find out is to go and check.

/personally, I think the question is still very open and have no opinion on the odds either way
 
2009-09-22 06:47:21 AM  
inkblot: I'd be a bit more impressed if any of those pics were less than a decade old.

The 16th photo, of the moon eclipsing the sun was taken in July 22, 2009
 
2009-09-22 07:59:27 AM  
"Oh! it was OK!! But there were no clowns, no tigers, lions or bears, candy-floss, toffee apples, no clowns."


was cool just seemed like a use of the above
 
2009-09-22 09:21:52 AM  
Alien Robot: It's too cold for life there.

There are finds all the time in the deep ocean where life should not be (too cold, not enough light, etc), and yet there it is.
 
2009-09-22 09:23:03 AM  
k-rock: Anyone else get just a little tense seeing those images of massive solar flares? Makes you realize it wouldn't take much to turn the earth into a big hunk of charcoal.

If the features are that massive, it makes me wonder why we don't use similar filtering technology on nearby stars. At least, I haven't seen any pictures of, say, prominences on Sirius A or starspots on Betelgeuse.

Our best telescopes can resolve several large nearby stars as disks, but the only stellar features we've studied in detail are that of the Sun, which is rather typical as far as stars go. It's like trying understand all mammals by dissecting a single rat -- you'll learn a lot, but the knowledge will be dangerously incomplete. I understand putting filters on HST's WFPC2 for a few sightings is a tad unfeasible, but what about ground-based telescopes?

Anyone familiar with the technological challenges? I figure the resolution capability's already there.
 
2009-09-22 10:25:29 AM  
Finished the slideshow. Lots of Saturn, Mars and Sol, a few Jovian moons and a little Mercury and Jupiter thrown in.

What, no Neptune? Voyager 2 traveled twelve years to trasmit this beautiful photo, and it wasn't a quiet cruise, either -- it was already pushed from a brutal three-planet tour. It's still working, although it's experienced multiple failures.
http://superkillerzombie.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/neptune.jpg

It's not visually pleasing, but the little Huygens Probe That Could jumped through 800 million miles of hoops to give us the only ground-based photo of extraterrestrial rocks within 800 million miles of it:
http://www.spaceflightnow.com/cassini/images/050115color.jpg

This image from Venera 13's lander doesn't look like much either, and comes from a lot closer, but it makes Huygen's long quiet cruise to Saturn look like a vacation. It's from the I-can-literally-melt-lead surface of Venus, an ungodly 860°F that the probe survived for two hours (digitally remastered):
http://www.mentallandscape.com/C_Venera13_New2.jpg

This is a picture of the asteroid/comet 9P/Tempel as photographed by Deep Impact which, well, literally shot at it. The impactor itself was a small probe that took in-your-face photographs of the comet that annihilated it:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3e/Deep_Impact_HRI.jpeg

Mir, Earth and Moon:
http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/0504/moonmir_sts91_big.jpg

. . . I can't wait for New Horizons to reach Pluto.
 
2009-09-22 11:10:37 AM  
Those were some amazing pictures... simply incredible that people forget how beautiful the natural world is.
 
2009-09-22 11:10:57 AM  
mamoru: Alien Robot: XMark: I would be surprised if we cracked open Europa and didn't find it teeming with life.

It's too cold for life there.

Not necessarily. We know next to nothing what internal conditions are like. If the hypotheses of a sub-surface liquid water ocean are correct AND if there is any kind of geological activity such as hydrothermal vents AND if there is enough energy and the right materials to make organic molecules and concentrate them, then there is the chance that life could have evolved there and is still there. There is also the chance, if you want to go the panspermia route, that life, even in the form of single-celled bacteria like organisms, seeded the planet from without (I'd bet various of Earth's extremophiles and even not-so-extremophiles could live there). There is, of course, also the chance that there is no life there at all, nor even the organic precursors to life as we know it.

The only way to find out is to go and check.

/personally, I think the question is still very open and have no opinion on the odds either way


I like your style.
 
2009-09-22 11:11:08 AM  
dragonchild:

. . . I can't wait for New Horizons to reach Pluto.


Word.

/beautiful find. Thanks, subby.
 
2009-09-22 12:25:09 PM  
Besides being visually stunning, these pictures remind me that we, Homo sapiens, have created objects that are hurtling through space and providing us with these images. When we set our minds to it, there's very little that we can't accomplish.

/subby
 
2009-09-22 12:35:28 PM  
squidzilla: Besides being visually stunning, these pictures remind me that we, Homo sapiens, have created objects that are hurtling through space and providing us with these images. When we set our minds to it, there's very little that we can't accomplish.

/subby


Ah, indeed. If only it weren't so goddamned hard to get us focused on what matters.

Thanks for a great link!
 
2009-09-22 08:04:16 PM  
1) Beautiful

2) This is why I go to APOD every day (and have seen almost every one of these pictures before, and at high resolution). Everyone with even a passing interest in astronomy should bookmark APOD.

3) inkblot: I'd be a bit more impressed if any of those pics were less than a decade old.

You're either trolling or you're thick. Almost every one of those pictures was taken in the last 5 years.
 
2009-09-22 08:49:09 PM  
100 Watt Walrus: 1) Beautiful

2) This is why I go to APOD every day (and have seen almost every one of these pictures before, and at high resolution). Everyone with even a passing interest in astronomy should bookmark APOD.


Thanks for the bookmark. And thanks, subby, for an amazing find.
 
2009-09-23 06:03:26 AM  
Makes you realize how small our world truly is.

Fantastic pictures.

Everyone should see this picture, and read what sagan says about it
 
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