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RedShark News – Amazing CGI shot… that’s not CGI!

July 6th, 2013 No comments

http://www.redsharknews.com/production/item/871-amazing-cgi-shot-that-s-not-cgi

When we saw this shot we thought it must be CGI. The thing is, how do you get a high quality camera 500 m above a rocket launch pad, and keep it there throughout the launch. This is the sort of thing you’d normally have to do, painstakingly, with animation and compositing

But this is real. We don’t have any real details except that this is was taken by a Hexacopter at the recent launch of the SpaceX Grashopper spacecraft, which is designed to take off and land at exactly the same spot – something of a remarkable achievement in itself.

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Actual movie of flying through Saturn’s rings

July 4th, 2013 No comments

This is the teaser for the IMAX film “In Saturn’s Rings”. The group that is doing the movie took over one million photographs taken by the Cassini Probe and painstakingly pieced them together with NO CGI or effects! If the movie is impressive as the trailer, this will be a don’t miss when it comes to town! Unfortunately it is not due out until 2014.

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Watch “Space Oddity” on YouTube

May 13th, 2013 No comments

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Watch “NASA | Solar Cycle” on YouTube

January 6th, 2013 No comments

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Happy New Years

January 1st, 2013 No comments

Happy New Years from Curiosity Rover

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A Time-lapse Photography Message From Astronauts to All Humankind for 2013 – PictureCorrect

January 1st, 2013 No comments

Link: PictureCorrect

Happy New Year from the ISS:

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Watch “Jewel in the Night — original music from the International Space Station” on YouTube

December 25th, 2012 No comments

Merry Christmas from the International Space Station!

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Starry Night

October 5th, 2012 No comments

The famous Van Gogh painting Starry Night has received a very modern makeover
From the Herald Sun
By Erinna Giblin
Oct 3, 2012

THE picture is iconic, inspiring artists, astronomers and lovers for generations. Now new tribute has been paid to Vincent Van Gough’s “Starry Night”

Astrophysics student Alex Parker’s work involves a lot of starry nights, focusing on the formation and evolution of planetary systems.

So when cloudy weather stopped the PhD student from exploring space from his office at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, he decided to get creative.

He moulded some of the stunning images from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope into an homage to Vincent Van Gogh’s famous 1889 painting, ‘Starry night’, using photo-mosaic software.

click on picture to see full (zoom-able) version

Alex Parker, a PHD astronomy student took Van Gogh’s 1889 painting, and built it back up from arguably humanity’s other most famous space portraits – those taken by the Hubble telescope over the last 20 years. Picture: Supplied

While the original artwork is set outside the painter’s asylum room window, where he was staying after a mental breakdown the year before at Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, in France, Parker’s version is a lighter take on the awe-inspiring night sky.

Parker explained to Michele Banks at thefinchandpea.com :“The idea came up around the time of Hubble’s 22nd birthday, when I thought it would be neat to assemble a collage of a bunch of Hubble images from over its history.”

[Alternate to the original can be found HERE]

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Curiosity Update – Destination Mount Sharp

August 16th, 2012 No comments

Destination Mount Sharp

This image from NASA’s Curiosity rover looks south of the rover’s landing site on Mars towards Mount Sharp. This is part of a larger,high-resolution color mosaic made from images obtained by Curiosity’s Mast Camera.

In this version of the image, colors have been modified as if the scene were transported to Earth and illuminated by terrestrial sunlight. This processing, called “white balancing,” is useful for scientists to be able to recognize and distinguish rocks by color in more familiar lighting.

The image provides an overview of the eventual geological targets Curiosity will explore over the next two years, starting with the rock-strewn, gravelly surface close by, and extending towards the dark dunefield. Beyond that lie the layered buttes and mesas of the sedimentary rock of Mount Sharp.

The images in this mosaic were acquired by the 34-millimeter Mastcam over about an hour of time on Aug. 8, 2012 PDT (Aug. 9, 2012 EDT), each at 1,200 by 1,200 pixels in size.

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

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Morse Code On Mars

August 13th, 2012 No comments

From EDN
Doug Grant- 08.10.2012 August 10, 2012

Since everybody else is writing about the Curiosity Rover, I guess I need to write something about Mars—like the fact that there’s Morse code up there.

I’m not sure whether this got covered anywhere in the popular media, but the ARRL reported it a while ago.

If you look carefully at the treads on the wheels of the rover vehicle, you’ll notice the predominant, zigzag pattern, but you’ll also see a section of tread on each wheel that’s patterned with dots and dashes. The official word is that they serve as “visual odometry markers” that tell the mission controllers how far Curiosity has roved and let them verify that the rover’s wheels are indeed turning when the rover’s telemetry says it is moving. But I think they’re just a really, really cool hack that some ham on the development team at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena couldn’t resist. The dots and dashes spell out “JPL” in the surface dust on the Red Planet.

Detail of Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover with tread pattern that will leave an impression on the Martian surface spelling “JPL” in Morse Code (·— ·–· ·-··). Photo courtesy of NASA/JPL.

Yes, Morse code is alive and well. A while back, I had lunch with a professor and some of his grad students. The prof knew I was a ham and told his students that I could actually deode Morse code signals in my head. They were astonished, partly because they didn’t know Morse was still being used anywhere, and partly because a human could copy it without a computer.

Turns out there are a few other examples of Morse code that turn up in unlikely places. The next time you watch a baseball game being played at Fenway Park in Boston, look carefully at the white lines in the scoreboard on the left-field wall. You’ll spot some dots and dashes hiding in plain sight in two of the vertical stripes. They spell out “TAY” and JRY,” for Thomas A Yawkey and his wife, Jean R Yawkey; the Yawkeys were co-owners of the Red Sox for many years.

There is also a “Morse Code” wine in the shops; the specific varietal is spelled out in dots and dashes on the label. The next time you’re shopping for wine, bring along a ham to tell you what it is.

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