APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

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APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by APOD Robot » Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:05 am

Image M16: Pillars of Creation

Explanation: It was one of the most famous images of the 1990s. This image, taken with the Hubble Space Telescope in 1995, shows evaporating gaseous globules (EGGs) emerging from pillars of molecular hydrogen gas and dust. The giant pillars are light years in length and are so dense that interior gas contracts gravitationally to form stars. At each pillars' end, the intense radiation of bright young stars causes low density material to boil away, leaving stellar nurseries of dense EGGs exposed. The Eagle Nebula, associated with the open star cluster M16, lies about 7000 light years away. The pillars of creation were imaged again in 2007 by the orbiting Spitzer Space Telescope in infrared light, leading to the conjecture that the pillars may already have been destroyed by a local supernova, but light from that event has yet to reach the Earth.

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by Boomer12k » Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:26 am

This is always a great picture...amazing...the right pillar looks like a dog raised up on the other pillar and is baying at the stars... :D

My pictures are a little less...my 10in Meade LX200 GPS....with Deep Sky Imager 2. I think this was 30 sec, and about 10 stacked frames...not too bad for me...The speck trails are the camera heat artifact, I haven't removed them yet...got to take more dark frames... :shock:


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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by nstahl » Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:34 am

Beautiful as always. And the news it may be gone but we'll get the news in a thousand years is new to me.

I wonder whether there'll be any of us here to get that news.

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by Moonlady » Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:41 am

Hey Boomer, they should engage you to fill the dark right upper part of that great APOD!

I love this APOD, but that dark right corner is bothering me! Why is it impossible to complete the picture?

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by smitty » Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:33 am

The discussion section of this apod puzzles me; it says:

"The pillars of creation were imaged again in 2007 by the orbiting Spitzer Space Telescope in infrared light, leading to the conjecture that the pillars may already have been destroyed by a local supernova, but light from that event has yet to reach the Earth."

Am I reading this wrong, or is it somehow implying that infrared radiation travels faster than visible radiation? Some clarification would be much appreciated. Thanks.

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Coo coo ca-choo, Mrs. Robinson

Post by neufer » Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:52 am

http://www.who2.com/blog/2010/03/the-eerie-death-of-branwell-bronte wrote: Did Branwell Bronte (26 June 1817 – 24 September 1848)
really die standing up? So says Somerset Maugham.

We mentioned earlier that Maugham lists Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights in his book on the 10 greatest novels of all time. Emily was preceded in death (barely) by her older brother Branwell, and Maugham relates a curious anecdote about his death.

The setup: Branwell was hired to tutor the children of a wealthy clergyman, Mr. Edmund Robinson. "Mr. Robinson was an elderly invalid with a youngish wife and Branwell, though she was seventeen years older than he, fell in love with her and she with him."

Mr. Robinson discovered the affair and ordered his wife never to see Branwell again. Branwell, despairing, turned to booze and opium.

But! The clergyman died. Branwell was given sudden hope that he would be reunited with his lover -- until a letter from her arrived the next day, begging him to stay away forever. The old man had arranged it that she would lose her new fortune and the custody of her children if she saw him even once.

Maugham describes what happened next:
  • Branwell proceeded to drink himself to death. When he knew the end was come, wanting to die standing, he insisted upon getting up. He had only been in bed a day. Charlotte was so upset that she had to be led away, but her father, Anne and Emily looked on while he rose to his feet and after a struggle that lasted twenty minutes died, as he wished, standing.>>
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by nstahl » Sun Jul 22, 2012 11:58 am

smitty, go to and read the "may already have been destroyed" link. There it's stated there's evidence for a supernova going off when that light left for here. That supernova could have since destroyed the Pillars but it wouldn't have happened instantaneously. So while the photons we see were traveling, the Pillars were being destroyed and we may see photons from later in the process when the Pillars are damaged, in a thousand years. If we haven't long since made earth too hot to live on.

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by smitty » Sun Jul 22, 2012 12:19 pm

So, neufer, I gather that what you're suggesting is that events which occurred on the far side of the pillars (relative to Earth) are visible in infrared wavelengths, which penetrate the pillars, but not in visible light, which does not. Correct? That does make some sense. Also an interesting bit of history. So why *are* these three authors refusing to show their hands? Does the answer have anything to do with infrared radiation being able to reveal them?

And thanks for your help, too, nstahl. Will follow up on your suggestion.

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by geckzilla » Sun Jul 22, 2012 12:37 pm

Moonlady wrote:Why is it impossible to complete the picture?
I just looked in the HLA and Hubble hasn't imaged that area. I guess it isn't high enough priority to use valuable Hubble time collecting the rest of the data. You'd have to mix in some data from a ground-based telescope.
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by owlice » Sun Jul 22, 2012 12:41 pm

Why this image is shaped the way it is: http://hubblesite.org/gallery/behind_th ... cky_shape/
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Jul 22, 2012 2:32 pm

Moonlady wrote:I love this APOD, but that dark right corner is bothering me! Why is it impossible to complete the picture?
But the picture is complete! What's missing? What's with this strange human obsession for squares, versus other nice shapes? Except for a handful of allsky mosaics, every APOD is missing everything outside its border, isn't it?
Chris

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by neufer » Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:19 pm

smitty wrote:
So, neufer, I gather that what you're suggesting is that events which occurred on the far side of the pillars (relative to Earth) are visible in infrared wavelengths, which penetrate the pillars, but not in visible light, which does not. Correct? That does make some sense.
If it seems to have made any sort of sense at all then that was clearly not my intent.
-----------------------------------------------------------------
<<My favourite piece of information is that Branwell Bronte, brother of Anne, Emily and Charlotte, died standing up leaning against a MANTELpiece, in order to prove it could be done. This is not quite true, in fact. My absolute favourite piece of information is the fact that young sloths are so inept that they frequently grab their own arms and legs instead of tree limbs, and fall out of trees. That reminds me of another favourite piece of information: there is a large kink in the trans-Siberian railway because when the Czar (I don't know which Czar it was because I am not in my study at home; I'm leaning against something shamefully ugly in Michigan and there are no books) decreed that the trans-Siberian railway should be built, he drew a line on a map with a ruler. The ruler had a nick in it.>> - Douglas Adams
-----------------------------------------------------------------
smitty wrote:
Also an interesting bit of history. So why *are* these three authors refusing to show their hands? Does the answer have anything to do with infrared radiation being able to reveal them?
Someone certainly might try that technique: http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/paint ... xamination
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by owlice » Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:29 pm

Hands are very difficult to paint; some painters charge(d) more for portraits if the portraits include hands. (It's no accident that Napolean's hand is tucked into his coat.) I had my son's portrait painted, and the one part of the painting that I requested be reworked was his hands; the artist agreed they needed more work.

So I think it likely that the authors were not hiding their hands as much as the painter was not equal to rendering them well.
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by neufer » Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:42 pm

owlice wrote:
Hands are very difficult to paint; some painters charge(d) more for portraits if the portraits include hands. (It's no accident that Napolean's hand is tucked into his coat.) I had my son's portrait painted, and the one part of the painting that I requested be reworked was his hands; the artist agreed they needed more work.

So I think it likely that the authors were not hiding their hands as much as the painter was not equal to rendering them well.
He had no problem with faces, apparently.

(Note that all the Bronte sisters died off almost as suddenly & mysteriously as they had appeared.)
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by Moonlady » Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:40 pm

Chris Peterson wrote:
Moonlady wrote:I love this APOD, but that dark right corner is bothering me! Why is it impossible to complete the picture?
But the picture is complete! What's missing? What's with this strange human obsession for squares, versus other nice shapes? Except for a handful of allsky mosaics, every APOD is missing everything outside its border, isn't it?

Because it is leaving deliberately the showing big square (original picture) with unfilled, lacking , square information (in it) that for, it is uncomplete in the sense of showing a
scientific picture...or it could be a square black hole :wink: ...they could show the original image without that black part, with the original steps.

or it is in my genes that I want a square with complete information :lol2:
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by owlice » Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:14 pm

neufer wrote:He had no problem with faces, apparently.
Right; faces are easier to draw than hands.
A closed mouth gathers no foot.

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:59 pm

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by Ann » Sun Jul 22, 2012 6:38 pm

The lone Brontë brother as the pillar of creation (of his sisters' portrait) who, by dying standing up, foretold or imitated the fate of the pillars of creation (of small stars in M16) - well, the idea of "before or after" is a tricky concept in general relativity spacetime - Art, I love it!

You just scored a "12" on a scale from 1 to 10 when it comes to wittiness and an amazing knack for seeing the most incredible patterns in the universe around us!

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Faces are easier to draw than hands?

Post by neufer » Sun Jul 22, 2012 6:50 pm

ImageImage
owlice wrote:
neufer wrote:
owlice wrote:
Hands are very difficult to paint; some painters charge(d) more for portraits if the portraits include hands. (It's no accident that Napolean's hand is tucked into his coat.)
He had no problem with faces, apparently.
Right; faces are easier to draw than hands.
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: Faces are easier to draw than hands?

Post by neufer » Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:32 pm

http://www.chron.com/news/nation-world//news/article/Spanish-cave-paintings-shown-as-oldest-in-world-3634498.php#photo-3069195 wrote:
Spanish cave paintings shown as oldest in world
SETH BORENSTEIN, AP Science Writers
Updated 07:37 p.m., Thursday, June 14, 2012

WASHINGTON (AP) — New tests show that crude Spanish cave paintings of a red sphere and handprints are the oldest in the world, so ancient they may not have been by modern man. Some scientists say they might have even been made by the much-maligned Neanderthals, but others disagree.

Testing the coating of paintings in 11 Spanish caves, researchers found that one is at least 40,800 years old, which is at least 15,000 years older than previously thought. That makes them older than the more famous French cave paintings by thousands of years. Scientists dated the Spanish cave paintings by measuring the decay of uranium atoms, instead of traditional carbon-dating, according to a report released Thursday by the journal Science. The paintings were first discovered in the 1870s.

The oldest of the paintings is a red sphere from a cave called El Castillo. About 25 outlined handprints in another cave are at least 37,300 years old. Slightly younger paintings include horses.

Cave paintings are "one of the most exquisite examples of human symbolic behavior," said study co-author Joao Zilhao, an anthropologist at the University of Barcelona. "And that, that's what makes us human."

There is older sculpture and other portable art. Before the latest test, the oldest known cave paintings were those France's Chauvet cave, considered between 32,000 and 37,000 years old. What makes the dating of the Spanish cave paintings important is that it's around the time when modern humans first came into Europe from Africa.

Study authors say they could have been from modern man decorating their new digs or they could have been the working of the long-time former tenant of Europe: the Neanderthal. Scientists said Neanderthals were in Europe from about 250,000 years ago until about 35,000 years ago. Modern humans arrived in Europe about 41,000 to 45,000 years ago — with some claims they moved in even earlier — and replaced Neanderthals. "There is a strong chance that these results imply Neanderthal authorship," Zilhao said. "But I will not say we have proven it because we haven't." In a telephone press conference, Zilhao said Neanderthals recently have gotten "bad press" over their abilities. They decorated their tools and bodies. So, he said, they could have painted caves.

But there's a debate in the scientific community about Neanderthals. Other anthropologists say Zilhao is in a minority of researchers who believe in more complex abilities of Neanderthals. Eric Delson, a paleoanthropologist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, and John Shea at Long Island's Stony Brook University said the dating work in the Science paper is compelling and important, but they didn't quite buy the theory that Neanderthals could have been the artists. "There is no clear evidence of paintings associated with Neanderthal tools or fossils, so any such evidence would be surprising," Delson said. He said around 41,000 years ago Neanderthals were already moving south in Europe, away from modern man and these caves.

Shea said it is more likely that modern humans were making such paintings in Africa even earlier, but the works didn't survive because of the different geology on the continent. "The people who came in to Europe were very much like us.
They used Art, they used symbols,
" Shea said. "They were not like Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble.">>
Last edited by neufer on Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by Beyond » Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:41 pm

The Great ARTist of wittiness wrote:If it seems to have made any sort of sense at all then that was clearly not my intent.
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To find the Truth, you must go Beyond.

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:50 pm

Moonlady wrote:I love this APOD, but that dark right corner is bothering me! Why is it impossible to complete the picture?
owlice wrote:Why this image is shaped the way it is:
http://hubblesite.org/gallery/behind_th ... cky_shape/
Chris Peterson wrote:But the picture is complete! What's missing? What's with this strange human obsession for squares, versus other nice shapes? Except for a handful of allsky mosaics, every APOD is missing everything outside its border, isn't it?
Moonlady wrote:Because it is leaving deliberately the showing big square (original picture) with unfilled, lacking , square information (in it) that for, it is uncomplete in the sense of showing a
scientific picture...or it could be a square black hole :wink: ...they could show the original image without that black part, with the original steps.

or it is in my genes that I want a square with complete information :lol2:

The Pillars of Creation
by Jeff Hester | NOVA
Many people have gazed in awe at the Hubble Space Telescope image (left) taken of the Eagle Nebula, a spectacular star-forming region about 6,500 light-years away. Indeed, I'm proud to say—since I "took" the picture with my colleague Paul Scowen at Arizona State University—that the image is arguably the most famous Hubble photograph ever taken. But few laypeople realize just how much effort goes into preparing such images sent down from our orbiting eye on the universe. In this feature, I'll walk you through the various steps it took to assemble this image from the raw data, then end with just a bit about what the image tells us about the "Pillars of Creation," as this fascinating star nursery has been dubbed.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/origins/hubb-nf.html
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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by bystander » Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:02 pm

smitty wrote:The discussion section of this apod puzzles me; it says:
APOD Robot wrote:The pillars of creation were imaged again in 2007 by the orbiting Spitzer Space Telescope in infrared light, leading to the conjecture that the pillars may already have been destroyed by a local supernova, but light from that event has yet to reach the Earth.

Am I reading this wrong, or is it somehow implying that infrared radiation travels faster than visible radiation? Some clarification would be much appreciated. Thanks.
'Pillars of creation' destroyed by supernova
New Scientist | David Shiga | 2007 Jan 10

Pillars of Creation Toppled By Stellar Blast
Space.com | Ker Than | 2007 Jan 09

How the famous 'pillars of creation' astronomical phenomenon were actually vapourised 6,000 years ago
The Daily Mail | Mark Prigg | 2012 July 19
Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by canesvenatici » Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:38 pm

Boomer, thanks for the dog-barking-up-the-pillar image! my Labs
thank you, with stars in their eyes. (Tho' with the 14yr old it's probably
cataracts.)

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Re: APOD: M16: Pillars of Creation (2012 Jul 22)

Post by minkfarms » Sun Jul 22, 2012 9:41 pm

Loved the Pillars as always but loved the comments here even more. Good entertainment on a Sunday.