NASA’s Juno mission is going to fly by the moon io of Jupiter on July 30, 2023. And this spacecraft is going to make its nearest approach to the planet.

Will Juno’s Mission Explore Volcanoes of Moon Io of Jupiter?

On July 30, NASA’s Juno mission will conduct another examination of Jupiter’s fiery moon, Io. This time, the solar-powered spacecraft will make its closest approach yet, coming within 13,700 miles (22,000 kilometers) of the moon. During this flyby, the Italian-built JIRAM (Jovian InfraRed Auroral Mapper) and other science instruments will collect valuable data, offering insights into the moon’s numerous erupting volcanoes that spew molten lava and sulfurous gases across its surface.

Juno Principal Investigator Scott Bolton of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio remarked that while JIRAM’s primary purpose was to observe Jupiter’s polar aurora, its ability to detect heat sources has proven crucial in identifying active volcanoes on Io. As Juno approaches the moon with each flyby, JIRAM and other instruments on board contribute to an ever-growing repository of data about Io. This accumulation not only aids in a more detailed examination of surface features but also enables a better understanding of their dynamic changes over time.

Moon Io
At top and bottom right, JunoCam images taken in May 2023 of Jupiter’s moon Io show lava fields surrounding volcanoes Volund A and B appear to be growing in size. Previous NASA spacecraft imaged the same region in 1996, bottom left, and 2007, bottom center.
Credits: Galileo: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona. New Horizons: NASA/JHUAPL/SWRI Juno. Image data: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS. Image processing: Jason Perry (CC BY)

What is the Recent Discoveries in Moon Io of Jupiter So Far?

The spinning, solar-powered spacecraft, launched in 2011, has been studying the Jovian system since 2016. It is set to begin the third year of on July 31.

Io, slightly larger than Earth’s moon, is a world in constant turmoil. Gravitational forces from Jupiter and its Galilean siblings, Europa and Ganymede, continuously pull and stretch the moon. And contributing to the ongoing eruption of lava from its many volcanoes.

During Juno’s previous flyby of Io on May 16, the JunoCam imager captured an image from 22,100 miles (35,600 kilometers) showing a smudge in the moon’s Volund region, near the equator. These smudges act as valuable clues for planetary scientists, indicating changes on the surface of the moon.

Jason Perry of the University of Arizona’s HiRISE Operations Center in Tucson pointed out the expansion of the lava flow field to the west. And the fresh lava flows surrounding another volcano just north of Volund. And comparing it to visible-light images taken during Galileo and New Horizons flybys in 1999 and 2007. This direct observation of changes on Io’s surface after 16 years is an exciting development for researchers studying its extreme volcanic activity.

Moon Io of Jupiter: Moon with Hundreds of Erupting Volcanoes

Jupiter’s moon, Io, stands as the most volcanically active world in our solar system. Which is boasting hundreds of volcanoes, some erupting lava fountains that can reach dozens of miles (or kilometers) in height. The impressive activity on Io is a consequence of a constant interplay between Jupiter’s powerful gravity. And the smaller yet precisely timed gravitational pulls from its neighboring moons, Europa and Ganymede, which orbit farther from Jupiter.

In size, Io is slightly larger than Earth’s Moon and ranks as the third largest of Jupiter’s moons, occupying the fifth position in terms of distance from the gas giant.

Io’s orbit around Jupiter is influenced by the large moons, Europa and Ganymede. They results in an irregularly elliptical path. Consequently, Io is subjected to significant tidal forces, causing its surface to bulge up and down (or in and out) by up to 330 feet (100 meters). This tidal effect far exceeds the tides experienced on Earth’s oceans, where the difference between low and high tides is only about 60 feet (18 meters) in water, not solid ground.

How does the Proximity of Moon Io of Jupiter will Spark Lightning and Transform its Surface?

Due to its proximity to Jupiter at approximately 262,000 miles (422,000 kilometers). The orbit of Moon io has cuts across the planet’s powerful magnetic field lines, effectively turning the moon into an electric generator. Io can develop a staggering 400,000 volts across its surface, generating an electric current of 3 million amperes. This electric current travels along Jupiter’s magnetic field lines, resulting in lightning within Jupiter’s upper atmosphere.

The tidal forces produce an immense amount of heat within Io, keeping much of its subsurface crust in a liquid state. This causes the moon’s surface to constantly renew itself, filling in impact craters with molten lava lakes and spreading smooth new floodplains of liquid rock.

The exact composition of this material remains somewhat uncertain, with theories suggesting it may primarily consist of molten sulfur and its compounds (explaining the varied coloring) or possibly silicate rock (which better accounts for the extreme temperatures, possibly too hot for sulfur). The thin atmosphere of moon Io mainly comprises sulfur dioxide, and unlike the other Galilean moons, it lacks water. Data from the Galileo spacecraft indicates that Io may have an iron core, thus possessing its own magnetic field.

How Does the Moon’s Interaction with the Gas Giant Shape Auroras, Plasma Torus, and Reveal Planetary Orbits?

As Jupiter rotates, its magnetic field interacts with Moon Io. Which is causing about 1 ton (1,000 kilograms) of Io’s material to be stripped away every second. This material becomes ionized in the magnetic field, creating a doughnut-shaped cloud of intense radiation known as a plasma torus. Jupiter’s atmosphere pulls some of these ions along the magnetic lines of force. Which results in auroras in the planet’s upper atmosphere. Additionally, ions escaping from this torus contribute to inflating Jupiter’s magnetosphere to more than twice its expected size.

If we look onto the previous history of Moon Io. Then Io was first discovered on January 8, 1610, by Galileo Galilei. This discovery, along with three other Jovian moons, marked the first time scientists. As they found a moon orbiting a planet other than Earth. The observation of these four Galilean satellites ultimately led to the realization that planets in our solar system. Which are revolving around the Sun, contrary to the previous belief that our solar system revolved around Earth. Galileo’s initial observation of Io occurred on January 7, 1610. But he was unable to distinguish between Io and Europa until the following night.

How did Jupiter’s Moons Receive Their Names and What Stories Lie Behind Io’s Name?

Originally, Galileo referred to Jupiter’s Moon io as the Medicean planets, naming them after the influential Italian Medici family. He labeled the individual moons numerically as I, II, III, and IV. This naming system persisted for a couple of centuries.

However, it wasn’t until the mid-1800s that the names we now use for the Galilean moon. Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto—were officially adopted. The shift occurred mainly because as astronomers discovered more moons around Jupiter and other planets, using numbers became confusing.

In mythology, Io undergoes a transformation into a cow due to a marital dispute between Zeus, the Greek god. Which is (also known as Jupiter in Roman mythology), and his wife, Juno.

What’s in the Name of Juno Mission and its Mythological Connection?

NASA named the Juno mission in honor of Juno. Who, according to mythology, possessed the ability to see through clouds and reveal her husband’s misdeeds. Similarly, the Juno spacecraft peers through the clouds of Jupiter to unveil the secrets hidden beneath.

Regarding the potential for life, Io is not a favorable destination due to constant volcanism and intense radiation. Which make it an inhospitable environment for life as we know it.

James Webb Telescope captured two young stars’ images. These two stars are Herbig-Haro 46/47 and covered in orange-white splotch.

Young Stars
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has captured a tightly bound pair of actively forming stars, known as Herbig-Haro 46/47, in high-resolution near-infrared light. Look for them at the center of the red diffraction spikes, appearing as an orange-white splotch. Herbig-Haro 46/47 is an important object to study because it is relatively young – only a few thousand years old. Star systems take millions of years to fully form. Targets like this give researchers insight into how much mass stars gather over time, potentially allowing them to model how our own Sun, which is a low-mass star, formed – along with its planetary system.
Credits: Image: NASA, ESA, CSA. Image Processing: Joseph DePasquale (STScI)

Webb Telescope Captures Stunning Images of Young Stars and Their Fiery Orange Lobes

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has captured fascinating images of two young stars, known as Herbig-Haro 46/47, in vivid near-infrared light. To spot them, just follow the bright pink and red spikes until you reach the center, where you’ll find the stars within the orange-white splotch. These stars are surrounded by a hidden disk of gas and dust that fuels their growth as they gain more mass.

What is so cool about the orange-white splotch in which these young stars are covered?

The coolest part is the fiery orange lobes that spread out on both sides from the center stars. This material was shot out from the stars as they swallowed and expelled gas and dust around them over thousands of years.

When the more recent ejections collide with older material, they shape these lobes differently, like turning a big fountain on and off randomly. This creates beautiful billowing patterns, and some jets release more material or move at higher speeds. Why does this happen? It’s probably because of the amount of material that fell onto the stars at specific times.

What are the key features observed in the recent ejections of the blue cloud of Herbig-Haro 46/47?

Let’s take a closer look at the stars’ recent ejections – they show up as thread-like blue lines just below the red spike at 2 o’clock. On the right side, these ejections form wavy patterns with breaks and end in a cool light purple circle within the thick orange area. On the left, we can see lighter blue, curly lines, though sometimes they’re hidden by the bright red spike.

These jets play a crucial role in star formation because they control how much mass the stars gather. The stars are surrounded by a small disk of gas and dust, like a tight band tied around them.

The Effervescent Blue Cloud: Let’s Know More About it!

Now, check out the second most prominent feature: the effervescent blue cloud. It’s a dense region of dust and gas, also known as a Bok globule. In visible light, it appears almost entirely black, but the James Webb Space Telescope’s near-infrared image lets us see through the hazy layers of the cloud. This reveals more of Herbig-Haro 46/47 and even shows distant stars and galaxies beyond it. You’ll notice the nebula’s edges in a soft orange outline, forming a backward L shape along the right and bottom.

What is the significance of the material ejected by young stars in the process of star formation?

The lobes we see are made up of material that the stars once swallowed from the dusty disk around them and then later expelled into space. These ejections play a vital role in the process of star formation. Picture them like a fountain, quickly turning on and off, creating beautiful patterns in the cosmic pool. Once these young stars finish growing, they will bring order to this chaotic scene.

In the background, you can’t help but notice the vast collection of stars and galaxies scattered across our universe. Each one, whether old or new, big or small, holds its significance in the vast expanse we call home.

What does the vast collection of stars and galaxies reveal about our universe?

Galaxies offer insights into the organization of matter on cosmic scales, providing valuable information to comprehend the universe’s nature and history. Scientists analyze both the present arrangement and the changes in organization across cosmic time to gain a deeper understanding of these fundamental processes.

What is the significance of the nebula in shaping the jets from the central stars?

Let’s explore the significance of the nebula in shaping the jets from the central stars. When the ejected material collides with the nebula on the lower left, it creates opportunities for the jets to interact with molecules in the nebula, causing both to light up.

Now, look at two other areas to compare the lobes’ asymmetry.

  • In the upper right, you’ll notice a blobby, sponge-shaped ejecta that appears separate from the larger lobe. Only a few semi-transparent wisps of material point toward the larger lobe, and there are almost transparent, tentacle-like shapes drifting behind it, like cosmic streamers.
  • On the lower left, beyond the hefty lobe, you’ll find an arc. Both the blob and the arc consist of material pushed farthest, possibly from earlier ejections. The arcs seem to point in different directions, suggesting they may have come from different outflows.

Take a closer look at the image. Although it seems like Webb captured Herbig-Haro 46/47 edge-on, one side is slightly closer to Earth, surprisingly the smaller right half. The left side, even though it’s larger and brighter, is pointing away from us.

Why Webb Space Telescope’s image of this cosmic nebula is so exceptional?

Throughout millions of years, the stars in Herbig-Haro 46/47 will fully form. And the stunning, colorful ejections we see now will eventually disappear. The binary stars will then become the main focus against a background filled with galaxies.

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) reveals such intricate details of Herbig-Haro 46/47 for two reasons.

  1. Firstly, the object is relatively close to Earth.
  2. Secondly, the telescope’s image is a combination of multiple exposures, adding depth to the picture.

Located 1,470 light-years away in the Vela Constellation, Herbig-Haro 46/47 is a cosmic nebula—a huge cloud of dust and gas. JWST’s special capabilities allow us to see through this haze and study what’s inside. Which is providing the most detailed portrait of these stars to date. The nebula is the reason why the stars’ jets appear to light up. As ejected material collides with the nebula on the lower left, it takes on wider shapes due to interactions with molecules within the nebula.

The image we have now is a sparkling spectacle, worth more than a thousand words. Even with all the information we’ve discussed, astronomers believe there’s still so much more to learn. They also believe about how stars form from this extraordinary picture.

From our cosmic backyard in the solar system to faraway galaxies near the beginning of time, NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has done what it said it would in its first year of science operations to show us the universe as we’ve never seen it before. NASA shared a picture of small Sun-like stars forming an area in the Rho Ophiuchi cloud complex taken by Webb to mark the end of a successful first year.

Sun-like stars
The first-anniversary image from NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope displays star birth like it’s never been seen before, full of detailed, impressionistic texture. The subject is the Rho Ophiuchi cloud complex, the closest star-forming region to Earth. It is a relatively small, quiet stellar nursery, but you’d never know it from Webb’s chaotic close-up. Jets bursting from young stars crisscross the image, impacting the surrounding interstellar gas and lighting up molecular hydrogen, shown in red. Some stars display the telltale shadow of a circumstellar disk, the makings of future planetary systems. Credits: NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI, Klaus Pontoppidan (STScI)

What were the perspectives on Webb after the Sun-like stars’ discovery?

Scientists had a realization of how Webb has altered the way humans perceive the solar system. Bill Nelson, who is in charge of NASA, said;

“In just one year, the James Webb Space Telescope has changed how people see the universe. For the first time, they can look into dust clouds and see light from faraway parts of the universe. Every new image, such as Sun-like stars, is a discovery that lets scientists worldwide ask and answer questions they could never have thought of before.” 

First of all, let’s have a look at Webb before discussing Sun-like stars. Webb is an investment in American innovation and a science achievement made possible by NASA’s foreign partners who share a can-do attitude and want to push the limits of what is possible. Thousands of engineers, scientists, and leaders have dedicated their lives to this goal, and their work will continue to help us learn more about the world and where we fit in it.

Webb is one of the most appreciated tools for space scientists

On the first anniversary of its launch, Nicola Fox, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington, said,

“The James Webb Space Telescope has already lived up to its promise to reveal the universe. It has given us a breathtaking treasure trove of images and science that will last for decades.” 

“Webb is an engineering marvel built by the best scientists and engineers in the world. It has given us a deeper understanding of galaxies, stars, and the atmospheres of planets outside of our solar system, setting the stage for NASA to lead the world into a new era of scientific discovery and the search for habitable worlds.”

Klaus Pontoppidan was the Webb project scientist at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, from before the telescope’s launch until the end of its first year of operation. once said;

“Webb’s picture of Rho Ophiuchi gives us a clearer look at a very short time in the life of a star. Our own Sun went through something similar a long time ago. Now we have the technology to see the beginning of another star’s story,” 

Sun-like stars
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has produced the deepest and sharpest infrared image of the distant universe to date. Known as Webb’s First Deep Field, this image of galaxy cluster SMACS 0723 is overflowing with detail. Thousands of galaxies – including the faintest objects ever observed in the infrared – have appeared in Webb’s view for the first time. Credits: NASA, ESA, CSA, and STScI

How was the image of Sun-like stars the Webb captures?

Webb’s picture of Sun-like stars shows an area with about 50 young stars, all about the same size as the Sun or smaller. Where there is a lot of dust, where protostars are still forming, it is darkest and densest. Huge bipolar jets of molecular hydrogen, shown in red, dominate the image. They stretch across the top third of the picture horizontally and vertically on the right.

When a star first breaks through its birth covering of cosmic dust, it sends a pair of opposite jets into space, just like a baby does when she stretches her arms out for the first time. In the lower part of the picture, the star S1 has made a bright cave out of dust. Among all other Sun-like stars, it’s the only star in the notion much bigger than the Sun.

The new Webb picture today shows the Sun-like star-forming area closest to us. It is only 390 light-years away, so we can closely see it because no stars are in the way. Some of the stars in the picture have shadows that point to protoplanetary disks, which are possible planetary systems in the making. In this picture from the Webb telescope, the galaxies look like bright, shining spots; some are blurry because of gravitational lensing. The shape of Webb’s mirrors makes the stars in the center look hopeful with six-pointed diffraction spikes.

The popularity of Webb captured images of Sun-like stars

Webb has kept its promise to show us more of the universe than ever before. Its first deep field picture was shown live at the White House by President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Nelson. But Webb showed us much more about the early universe than faraway galaxies; Sun-like stars by Webb are an example.

Eric Smith, associate director for research in the Astrophysics Division at NASA Headquarters and Webb program scientist, said;

“Now that we have a year’s worth of data from targets all over the sky, it’s clear how many kinds of science Webb can look into. Webb’s first year of science has taught us new things about our universe and shown that the telescope can do more than we thought it could. This means that future discoveries like Sun-like stars will be even more amazing.”

The science community worldwide has spent the last year looking over Webb’s first public data and figuring out how to use it.

How can Webb be useful for space study?

Scientists are most excited about Webb’s precise spectra, the specific information that can be taken from light by the telescope’s spectroscopic equipment. Webb’s scopes have proven the distances of some of the farthest galaxies ever seen and found the oldest and most distant supermassive black holes. It has discovered more about the atmospheres of planets (or the lack of atmospheres) than ever before.

They have also cut down what kinds of atmospheres may exist on rocky exoplanets for the first time. And they have also found the chemical makeup of Sun like stars nurseries and protoplanetary disks by finding water, biological molecules with carbon in them, and other things. Webb’s observations have led to hundreds of science studies that answer questions that have been around for a long time and raise new questions for Webb to answer.

What is Webbs’s significance regarding life on the planet Earth?

Webb’s views of our solar system, including Sun-like stars, the part of space we know best, also show its broad science. Webb shows faint rings of gas giants with moons out of the darkness. In the background, Webb shows galaxies that are very far away. By comparing the water and other chemicals in our solar system to those in the disks of other, much younger planetary systems, Webb is helping to figure out how Earth became the perfect place for life as we know it.

NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center’s Webb Senior Project Scientist Jane Rigby said,

“After a year of science, we know exactly how powerful this telescope is, and we’ve delivered spectacular data and discoveries.” 

“For year two, we’ve chosen a set of bold observations that build on everything we’ve learned so far. Webb’s science mission is just getting started. There is so much more to come.”

NASA and a private company called Axiom Space showed off new spacesuits that will be used by astronauts when they go to the Moon. These suits are Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Units or AxEMUs. They’re better than Apollo and ISS suits. The new suits were only partially shown so the design would not be copied. An extra layer of fabric only for display is covering the new Axiom Space xEMU spacesuits.

The primary reason for using this cover layer is to hide the specific details and design of the spacesuit since they are proprietary, meaning they are owned by Axiom Space and not meant to be revealed to the public or competitors. The press release also explains that the spacesuit will be white, as it needs to reflect heat and protect astronauts from the extremely high temperatures on the Moon.

What is the difference between this suit and the new AxEMU spacesuit?

Compared to the Apollo suits, the new xEMU spacesuits are one-piece suits with a “hatch” on the back, which is a back entry design that allows astronauts to step into the suit from behind. The suit has a hard torso that provides the core structure, arms and legs, and various mobility joints. The arms and legs can be changed out for custom fitting, which provides a better fit for the individual astronaut.

Additionally, the AxEMU spacesuit has a portable life support system on the back that provides life support systems for heat and cooling, air to breathe, and even food and water. The helmet bubble is mounted to the hard upper torso, and on top is the visor assembly that includes lights to allow astronauts to see in shadowed areas or during the lunar night. The new gloves and boots are designed to be more flexible and durable, allowing astronauts to work longer hours on the lunar surface.

xEMU spacesuits
Axiom Space engineer Jim Stein wears the prototype of the new AxEMU. Via NASA TV

However, we got to see that they are more functional and flexible than older suits,

How to get inside the xEMU spacesuits?

The suit is a one-piece suit with a hard torso that provides the core structure of the suit and arms and legs with various mobility joints. It can change out the legs and arms for fitting. To get into the suit, the astronaut would first approach the suit from the back, where there is a hatch or opening. They would then open the hatch and step into the suit one leg at a time. And pull  it up to their waist. They would then slip their arms into the arm openings, which have a variety of mobility joints to allow for flexibility.

spacesuits for moon exploration
Credit: Axiom Space

Once the arms are in, the astronaut would put on the helmet. The helmet is then attached to the hard upper torso of the xEMU spacesuits. The visor assembly is located on top of the helmet bubble. The visor assembly includes lights that help astronauts see in shadowed areas or during the lunar night. The backpack is located on the rear of the spacesuit. The backpack contains life support systems that provide cooling and heat, air to breathe, and even food and water to the astronaut. Once the backpack is attached, the astronaut is ready to go outside and perform a spacewalk or extravehicular activity (EVA).

Now, you might be wondering,

Who demonstrates the suit by putting the suit on?

Axiom Space engineer Jim Stein wore a prototype of the new suit and demonstrated it by walking around, doing squats, lunges, kneeling, and more. As well as displaying how much flexibility the arms of the new suit provided.

NASA’s Extravehicular Activity and Human Surface Mobility Program office are based at the Johnson Space Center (JSC). The program office conducted ten years of research on spacesuits for lunar activities, including moonwalks. He shared research findings with Axiom, the designers of the xEMU spacesuits. Axiom used this information to develop the new AxEMU spacesuit. The next astronauts landing on the Moon will wear this new spacesuit.

advanced AxEMU spacesuits
A view of the back of the new AxEMU suit. To the right is Russell Ralston, deputy program manager for Extravehicular Activity at Axiom Space. Via NASA TV.

Let’s find out,

What are the experts’ remarks on this?

Lara Kearney is the program manager. She explains that developing a spacesuit for the Artemis missions was challenging due to the Moon’s harsh environment. In particular, the south pole’s temperature requirements presented a significant challenge. The team aimed to make the new suit more mobile than the Apollo suits to improve astronaut movement. However, they also leveraged their past knowledge and experience to guide Axiom Space in developing the new spacesuit.

NASA’s Johnson Space Center Director Vanessa Wyche says NASA has not created a new astronaut spacesuit in the last 40 years. The last time NASA created new spacesuits was for the Space Shuttle program. Therefore, the collaboration with Axiom Space has created a new spacesuit, the AxEMU, which Wyche describes as being more functional. She adds that NASA will collaborate with Axiom Space to make the new spacesuit safe for astronauts.

 

Published by: Sky Headlines

The Ultraviolet Transient Astronomy Satellite (ULTRASAT) will be the first Israeli space telescope project, and it will be launched by NASA. The ultraviolet observatory ULTRASAT will explore the mysteries of transient cosmic occurrences including supernova explosions and neutron star mergers.

The Weizmann Institute of Science and the Israel Space Agency is involved with ULTRASAT. They are leading the effort to get ULTRASAT into a geostationary orbit around the Earth. The goal is to achieve this in 2026. NASA will do more than only launch the mission; they will also be assisting in scientific research.

Mark Clampin:

In a recent conversation with Mark Clampin.  The head of NASA’s Astrophysics Division in Washington said about the Israeli space telescope:

“We are proud to join this partnership, an international effort that will help us better understand the mysteries of the hot, transient universe,” He continued: “ULTRASAT will give the global science community another important capability for making new observations in the nascent field of time domain and multi-messenger astrophysics programs.”

ULTRASAT has a wide field of vision. With this feature, ULTRASAT can detect and record Ultraviolet rays. Moreover, It can detect these rays from transient cosmic sources in record time. To study these transient occurrences, combining data from ULTRASAT with data from other missions will be essential. Time domain and multi-messenger astronomy will help in combining the data. Other missions, such as those studying gravitational waves and particles, can contribute to this combined data. Everything from black holes and gravitational wave sources to supernovae and active galaxies will benefit from the results.

Director and Minister of Innovation:

Israeli Space Agency Director and Minister of Innovation, Science and Technology Uri Oron made this statement: “Groundbreaking science calls for cutting-edge technology,” Moreover, he said: “Our requirements from ULTRASAT, such as a wide field of view, advanced ultraviolet sensitivity, and real-time data control and transfer are at the forefront of technological developments. Israel’s space industry can deliver these capabilities. The Israel Space Agency is proud of the cooperation with NASA as a direct example of the strong partnership between the agencies, and of the Israeli space industry’s technological effort involved in the development of the telescope.”

Weizmann University of Science astronomer and ULTRASAT project leader Eli Waxman said: “This is a breakthrough project that places Israel at the forefront of global research,” Moreover, he continued: “Leading international bodies such as NASA and the DESY research institute have joined this Israeli-led project as partners, having recognized its scientific significance. They are investing considerable resources in the construction and launch of the satellite to become active participants in this mission with access to its scientific products. It’s a science-driven partnership.”

The Launch!

NASA and the Israel Space Agency have an agreement. Under the terms of the agreement, NASA has certain responsibilities. However, one of NASA’s responsibilities is to provide the launch opportunity for ULTRASAT. NASA is also responsible for providing the Flight Payload Adapter and other launch-related tasks for ULTRASAT. Moreover, The observatories that are ready to work will be starting moving from the Israel Space Agency to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Published by: Sky Headlines

The X-ray vision of the NuSTAR Telescope reveals some of the most burning regions in the Sun’s atmosphere. Human eyes cannot see all of the light that our closest star emits, not even on a sunny day. The Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array of NASA captures a new image that shows part of this hidden light.

This includes the high-energy X-rays released by the hottest material in the Sun’s atmosphere. While the observatory’s primary focus is on studying celestial bodies. The celestial bodies that are outside of our solar system, such as enormous black holes and dead stars. It has also given astronomers new information on the Sun.

NuSTAR Space Mission:

NASA’s X-ray “NuSTAR” launched on June 13, 2012. The design was just like a Small Explorer mission in collaboration with the Danish Technical University (DTU) and the Italian Space Agency. It was led by Caltech in Pasadena, California, and JPL manages it for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington (ASI) controls it.

The Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, Columbia University, and DTU all contributed to the construction of the telescope’s optics. Orbital Sciences Corp. in Dulles, Virginia created the spacecraft. The University of California, Berkeley houses the NuSTAR mission operations center, while NASA’s High Energy Astrophysics Science Repository Research Center is home to the program’s official data archive. ASL provides the mission’s ground station and a mirror data archive.  Caltech manages JPL.

NuSTAR Telescope Explores Unseen Light Shows on the Sun!
Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/JAXA

The Picture of the Sun:

In the composite image above (left), NuSTAR data are shown in blue, and observations from the X-ray Telescope (XRT) on the Hinode mission of the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency and the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) on NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) are shown in green and red, respectively. The picture of the Sun from the station in Earth of NuSTAR telescope orbit is a mosaic of 25 photographs that scientists got in June 2022. This is due to the fact of the observatory’s extremely narrow field of view and inability to see the full Sun.

NuSTAR telescope detects high-energy X-rays at a few specific spots in the Sun’s atmosphere. On the other hand, Hinode’s XRT and SDO’s AIA see the emitting wavelengths across the entire surface of the Sun.

NuSTAR’s views corona:

The Sun’s outer atmosphere, known as the corona, reaches more than a million degrees, making it at least 100 times hotter than its surface. NuSTAR’s view may help scientists unravel this mystery, which is one of the biggest ones about our nearest star. This confuses the scientists. This is because the Sun’s radiation radiates outward from its center. Compared to fire, the air is 100 times hotter than the flames.

Nanoflares:

Nanoflares are tiny eruptions in the Sun’s atmosphere. They could be the cause of the corona’s heat. “Flares”  that are large bursts of heat, light, and particles are visible by a variety of solar observatories.

Even though nanoflares are substantially smaller events, both types of flares emit material that is even hotter than the corona’s mean temperature. Nanoflares may occur much more frequently than regular flares, possibly frequently enough to heat the corona as a whole. Regular flares don’t occur frequently enough to maintain the corona at the high temperatures scientists observe.

NuSTAR can detect light from the high-temperature material that is anticipated to be formed when a large number of nanoflares occur close to one another, even though individual nanoflares are too faint to monitor among the Sun’s intense light. This capability enables physicists to study nanoflares’ energy release mechanism and frequency.

The closest encounter with the Sun:

These observations were got during NASA’s Parker Solar Probe’s 12th near approach to the Sun, or perihelion. This is the closest encounter with the Sun in spacecraft history. Scientists use the NuSTAR telescope to make observations during one of Parker’s perihelion crossings. This helps them to link activity in the Sun’s atmosphere that is seen from a distance. Samples of the solar environment were directly collected by the probe.

 

Published by: Sky Headlines

This picture taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope shows the Tarantula Nebula, also known as 30 Doradus. This is a massive region of ionized hydrogen gas that is forming stars. And is located 161,000 light-years away from Earth in the Large Magellanic Cloud. The region’s bright, new stars surround by turbulent clouds of gas and dust.

Hubble is familiar with the Tarantula Nebula. The star-forming region is the brightest in our galaxy. It is home to the most vibrant and massive stars known. It is an ideal laboratory for testing theories of star formation and evolution. Hubble has a wealth of images from this region. Recently, the NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope explored this region and discovered thousands of young stars that had never before been seen.

Two different observing proposals combined to create this new image. The first proposal aimed to examine the characteristics of dust particles in the thick clouds of darkness in this image of the Tarantula Nebula and in the space between stars. This hypothesis, dubbed Scylla by astronomers, explains how interstellar dust interacts with starlight in a variety of settings. It works in tandem with Ulysses, another Hubble program that characterizes stars. This image also contains data from an observing program that is studying star formation in early universe conditions and cataloging the stars of the Tarantula Nebula for future research with Webb.

 

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NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured an image of stars lying in the Orion Nebula. A smaller companion star is in the upper side of this image. Moreover, the luminous variable star V 372 Orionis is the point of attention in this picture. Roughly 1,450 light-years from Earth Orion Nebula is a colossal region of star formation.

What is V 372 Orionis?

V 372 Orionis or Orion Variable is a certain type of variable star. Moreover, Orion variableshubble-telescope-captured-images-a-stellar-duo-in-orion-nebula are young stars who experience some tempestuous moods and growing pains. These stars are visible to astronomers as irregular variations in luminosity. Just as V 372 Orionis, Orion Variables has also some connections with diffuse nebulae. The variable gas and dust of the Orion Nebula fill in this image.

Which Hubble instruments took this picture?

This image also overlays data from advanced Camera for Surveys and Wide Field Camera 3. Infrared and visible wavelengths were layered to show rich details of this corner of the Orion Nebula. In the form of diffraction spikes that surround the bright stars, Hubble left its slight signature on this astronomical portrait. When the starlight, interacts with the four vanes inside Hubble that support the telescope’s secondary mirror the four spikes around the brightest stars in this image form. Apart from that, NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope has six-pointed diffraction spikes. This is because of Webb’s hexagonal mirror segments and 3-legged support structure for the secondary mirror.

 

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Picture taken by the solar-powered orbiter’s JunoCam but not obtained engineering data are being evaluated again. The JunoCam imager aboard NASA’s Juno spacecraft did not acquire all planned images during the orbiter’s most recent flyby of Jupiter on Jan. 22. On Juno’s most recent flyby on Jan. 22 of Jupiter, NASA’s Juno spacecraft didn’t forward all the images that were captured. It is just as similar to the past months’ flyby. Just like one that NASA’s team faces on its previous flyby of the gas giant last month when the team saw the irregular rise in temperature after the camera was on in preparation for the flyby.

Is this the first time JunoCam faces an irregular rise in temperature?

Compared to the past month’s flyby this issue lasts longer. During December close pass the issue only remains for about 36 minutes. However, on this occasion, the issue persisted for about about 23 hours. This leaves the first 214 JunoCam images unusable during the flyby. The issue was all set after some time. Once the issue that was causing the rise in temperature was set the remaining 44 images were obtained with good quality and were usable.

Is this issue still bothering Juno?

During JunoCam’s 47th and 48th recent flybys of the mission, the team is evaluating the engineering data acquired. The mission team is also up to analyze the root cause of the anomaly and migration strategies. JunoCam will remain powered on for the time being and the camera continues to operate in its nominal state. For the time being the JunoCam will remain turned on and will continue to operate in a nominal state.

Designed to capture images of the gas giant cloud tops the JunoCam is a color, visible-light camera. The JunoCam imager aboard NASA’s Juno spacecraft for purposes of public engagement. But now after its progress, it has also proven to be significant for scientific investigations. Designed to operate in Jupiter’s high-energy particle conditions The camera has at least seven orbits but has survived far longer. Lastly, the Juno spacecraft will make its 49th flyby of Jupiter on March 1.

 

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Hubble telescope recently captured an image of a host of astronomical objects scattering in the universe. Galaxies ranging from stately spirals to fuzzy ellipticals scatter across the telescope image. While a smattering of bright foreground stars is closer to home. The small galaxy UGC 7983 sketchy shape appears as a hazy cloud of light visible in the middle of the image. In the constellation Virgo, around 30 million light-years from Earth, the small dwarf irregular galaxy UGC 7983 is located. Moreover, some researchers say that it is identical to the very earliest galaxies in the universe.

A relatively nearby astronomical interloper is also visible in the picture. Across the upper left-hand side of the image a minor asteroid in our own solar system streaks. Split by small gaps the asteroid’s trail is visible as four streaks of light. The four different exposures that were merged to make up this image are represented by these light streaks. Filter modifications inside the Hubble telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys between exposures can be seen in the tiny gaps between each observation.

In order to observe every known galaxy close to the Milky Way capturing an asteroid was a fortunate side effect of a larger effort. However, Of all the Milky Way’s near galactic neighbors, Hubble had imaged roughly 75%. A group of astronomers suggested using the gaps between longer Hubble observations to capture images of the remaining 25%. To fill gaps in the Hubble telescope observing schedule and in our knowledge of nearby galaxies, the project was an elegant and efficient way.

 

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