APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by APOD Robot » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:07 am

Image Fire on Earth

Explanation: Sometimes, regions of planet Earth light up with fire. Since fire is the rapid acquisition of oxygen, and since oxygen is a key indicator of life, fire on any planet would be an indicator of life on that planet. Most of the Earth's land has been scorched by fire at some time in the past. Although causing many a tragedy, for many places on Earth fire is considered part of a natural ecosystem cycle. Large forest fires on Earth are usually caused by lightning and can be visible from orbit. Above, in the year 2000, stunned elk avoid a fire sweeping through Montana's Bitterroot Valley by standing in a river.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Beyond » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:27 am

Image
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by ftherrmann » Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:05 am

Now seriously.... This is a beautiful image, however to say that this is even remotely close to Astronomy is insane, no matter how hard Nemiroff & Bonnell try to stretch it. Maybe a change to "Best Photography of the Day" would be a better name for the daily choices? Maybe I should just point my scope down and take a shot of the dirt? Or better yet, why not just use my iPhone? It is after all the Earth!

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by metamorphmuses » Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:26 am

It seems to me that given the extent of the fire in Yellowstone, the editors decided to highlight the aspect of large fires in regard to planetary science. APOD has many times delved more into planetary science rather than sticking religiously to astronomy. In short, it's not that much of a stretch to me, although it's best when done only sparingly on APOD.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Ann » Sun Sep 01, 2013 10:40 am

If there had been no liquid water on the Earth, there would have been no life on Earth as we know it. If there had been no large land masses on the Earth, no continents, with organic material that can dry out, catch fire and burn in the Earth's oxygen-rich atmosphere, there would have been no technological civilizations on the Earth, After all, how do you create technology if you can't make fire?

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Gemma Caelestis » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:41 pm

Ann's post to me is completely non sequitur - by this logic, any photo at all could be posted on APOD (without shovels we couldn't dig, if we couldn't dig, we couldn't mine metals, without metals, we couldn't make cameras to photograph the sky, so....a picture of a shovel belongs on APOD!!).

My day doesn't depend on APOD, and the site belongs to its creators so they can post whatever they like, but a pic of a forest fire really seems out of place.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Joe Stieber » Sun Sep 01, 2013 1:57 pm

If you want a nice picture of the night sky, go to today's EPOD (Earth Science Picture of the Day)...

http://epod.usra.edu/blog/2013/09/milky ... ntain.html

Go Figure.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by owlice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:15 pm

Yes, yes, it's a shame that astronomers would try to use information of our own planet to help them figure out what is going on out there; better for them to completely ignore the laboratory of Earth in their quest for knowledge about the cosmos. How utterly silly of them to consider anything Earthside as a possibility for informing them better about the rest of the universe, and even worse, how dare they share that silliness with the rest of us, whether by dramatic stunning photography or their words, or worse, the two together!
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by ShaileshS » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:18 pm

Come on, this image doesn't belong to APOD, has nothing to do with astronomy. +1 for all comments before this on same lines.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by mjimih » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:05 pm

I agree with Owlice wholeheartedly. The first Earthlike planet we really get to examine, should have plenty of Oxygen on it (to be Earth-like). So it shall have fire on it too perhaps?
Also if we are to watch AGW closely for our children's sake, we had better understand and monitor the way wildfires move etc, as the population keeps increasing everywhere and droughts keep hanging around more lately. Which increases the risk of forrest fires.
basically we need to be more respectful and wise to survive.
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Aliens will find Earth absolutely amazingly beautiful and fragile to behold. But if they get close enough, they'll see 7,000,000,000 of us and think "Uh oh, that's a lot for such a small planet. Wonder if we should help?"

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Ann » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:10 pm

Gemma Caelestis wrote:Ann's post to me is completely non sequitur - by this logic, any photo at all could be posted on APOD (without shovels we couldn't dig, if we couldn't dig, we couldn't mine metals, without metals, we couldn't make cameras to photograph the sky, so....a picture of a shovel belongs on APOD!!).

Tony
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Yes, well... I, too, would have preferred another APOD, but then I just thought... what conclusions, if any, might we draw about our own planet, as opposed to so many other planets, from the fact that there are fires on it?

But thank you so much, Joe Stieber, for that lovely EPOD (Earth Science Picture of the Day)!! :D :D :D

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by LocalColor » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:17 pm

My mother used to say, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." I think that applies to the folks who always seem to complain on Sundays about a repeat on APOD, or a photo that isn't a stunning Hubble image.

We appreciate the hard work these guys do for FREE for our internet enjoyment and education. Hope you guys are enjoying a long holiday weekend.

This particular photo is very relevant to those of us living in the west during this drought fueled fire season.

Thank you

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Joe Stieber » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:36 pm

"But thank you so much, Joe Stieber, for that lovely EPOD (Earth Science Picture of the Day)!! :D :D :D

Ann
You're welcome, Ann!

Actually, the EPOD features "astronomical" subjects far more often than the APOD features "terrestrial" subjects.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by ftherrmann » Sun Sep 01, 2013 5:33 pm

owlice wrote:Yes, yes, it's a shame that astronomers would try to use information of our own planet to help them figure out what is going on out there; better for them to completely ignore the laboratory of Earth in their quest for knowledge about the cosmos. How utterly silly of them to consider anything Earthside as a possibility for informing them better about the rest of the universe, and even worse, how dare they share that silliness with the rest of us, whether by dramatic stunning photography or their words, or worse, the two together!

The usual arrogant, sarcastic remark from "Owlice"!

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by owlice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 6:25 pm

Oh, I am not very often sarcastic here -- most of my posts are support related (posting images, keeping stats, tending source codes) -- but sure, every now and then I'm moved to facetiousness, such as when someone sarcastically posts he might as well point his scope down and take a shot of the dirt in response to an image, as you did upstream.

Terrestrial images are very popular on APOD -- polls have borne than out, as have reposting stats. I totally understand that some people don't like them; I think they would do well to browse the archives or look at Retrospective threads rather than call the use of a particular image "insane," as you did. How hard is it to wait 24 hours for the next day's image when you don't like one?

This image is stunning on many levels, and well illustrates some basic principles of interest to astronomers; it's also timely, given what is happening in the western US right now. And since it appears on APOD (and has before -- this image is a repeat), it is clearly suitable for APOD.
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Beyond » Sun Sep 01, 2013 6:43 pm

I think it's the word "Astronomical" that 'throws' some people. Somehow it's forgotten (or never realized in the first place) that the Earth is actually part of the whole Astronomical picture. Just ask any alien passing by. :mrgreen:
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by mjimih » Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:19 pm

Can any chemists here envision a differently composed clear atmosphere that has something akin to our colored flames in it? aka Other types of fire like ours out there? Or are Oxygen "fire"s the only type there is sort of that could happen on the surface of a Earth-like planet? If we had a different inert noble gas instead of nitrogen in the air, I suppose the flames would be a different color.
Aliens will find Earth absolutely amazingly beautiful and fragile to behold. But if they get close enough, they'll see 7,000,000,000 of us and think "Uh oh, that's a lot for such a small planet. Wonder if we should help?"

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Gemma Caelestis » Sun Sep 01, 2013 8:34 pm

And just to be clear, I'm also annoyed by the unscientific assumption that the elk in this picture were stunned by the fire.

All the elk I've ever seen look stunned anywhere, all the time. 8-)

Tony

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by geckzilla » Sun Sep 01, 2013 8:55 pm

owlice wrote:Terrestrial images are very popular on APOD -- polls have borne than out, as have reposting stats. I totally understand that some people don't like them; I think they would do well to browse the archives or look at Retrospective threads rather than call the use of a particular image "insane," as you did. How hard is it to wait 24 hours for the next day's image when you don't like one?
I'm adding to what you've written, Owlice. From only reading the posts at the Asterisk, one might think that this image is very unpopular. However, that's not necessarily the case. Over on our Facebook page, people are making positive comments if not having friendly conversation about the image. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid ... 985&type=1

We all know that sometimes APOD runs an off topic image. There's no reason to get ugly about it. Don't sweat the small stuff, as they say.
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by orin stepanek » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:06 pm

I thought it was pretty good for a Sunday picture! 8-) At least it's not a repeat which is sometimes the case! :wink:
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by owlice » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:08 pm

Right, geckzilla; I saw the conversation on the FB site, and know this image has struck a chord with people. I shared it on my own FB page; it's a stunning shot, beautiful and terrible at the same time.

Tony, lol on the elk!

Orin, it is a repeat; it appeared in 2000... so it's been a while! :shock:
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by Boomer12k » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:14 pm

"No Fire=No Life", huh? Sooooooo.....Enceladus, Moon of Saturn, with it's supposed Ocean depths...would have no life...right?
Of course, I get where the article is coming from...Forest Fire equals Forest to burn...equals....FOREST...equals Life...
Not all life needs to be OUR life...life may exist in niches...life lives in ICE, on ice, worms in the antarctic, I think,...in ACID pools...at extreme depths, at extreme heats...with little or no oxygen. It can be 20 feet down when the surface is sterile from to much UV rays. Organic matter may be on comets, as they have water in ice form. Oxygen can be formed from Microbes as with Earth...or from Exploding Stars... and GOOD LUCK with SEEING A FOREST FIRE FROM 4 light years away!!! Even Hubble Space Telescope going to have trouble with that one.
It will depend on the overall survivability of the environment, and if any life can find a niche...it has nothing to do with a single element like Fire....after all....The Sun...is on "FIRE"...

As for the picture....Awesomely beautiful, horrible tragedy....hope the Elk made it...

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by OzRob » Mon Sep 02, 2013 12:42 am

Beyond wrote:I think it's the word "Astronomical" that 'throws' some people. Somehow it's forgotten (or never realized in the first place) that the Earth is actually part of the whole Astronomical picture. Just ask any alien passing by. :mrgreen:
As far as I am aware astronomy is the study of matter outside of Earth's atmosphere.

I have APOD set up as one of my home pages. I have considered removing it due to photos being posted that have nothing to do with astronomy. The thing that bothers me is that there are many great amateur photos that can be used instead.

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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by owlice » Mon Sep 02, 2013 1:39 am

There are many professional images that could be shown instead of amateur images, and there are at this point likely millions of images just from NASA missions that could be shown rather than images from other telescopes/missions. Part of APOD's charm (and, given what the editors have said, design) is the breadth of material they consider suitable for the site.
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Re: APOD: Fire on Earth (2013 Sep 01)

Post by OzRob » Mon Sep 02, 2013 2:13 am

owlice wrote:There are many professional images that could be shown instead of amateur images, and there are at this point likely millions of images just from NASA missions that could be shown rather than images from other telescopes/missions. Part of APOD's charm (and, given what the editors have said, design) is the breadth of material they consider suitable for the site.
Yes, we are aware of your opinon. Are you going to continually denigrate other people's opinions on this matter?