October 22, 2018 - Illuminating Nebulae

Illuminating Nebulae  The Hubble Space Telescope captured two nebulae that appear as one. Intense radiation from the brilliant central stars is heating hydrogen in each of the nebulae, causing them to glow red. These nebulae, known as NGC 248, are among many bright nebulae in the Small Magellanic Cloud, a neighboring dwarf galaxy 200,000 light-years away in the southern constellation Tucana. They were discovered in 1834 by John Herschel. NGC 248 is about 60 light-years long and 20 light-years wide. The image is part of a study called Small Magellanic Cloud Investigation of Dust and Gas Evolution (SMIDGE). Astronomers are using Hubble to probe the Milky Way satellite to understand how dust is different in galaxies that have a far lower supply of heavy elements needed to create dust.

Image credit: NASA, ESA, STScI, K. Sandstrom (Univ of California, San Diego), and the SMIDGE team

Weekly Calendar

October 22 - 28, 2018

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History


Moon phase Monday 22

Orionid meteor shower

2136 BCE: First record of solar eclipse
1905: Karl Jansky born
1966: Luna 12 launched
1975: Venera 9 orbits Venus
1992: STS-52 Columbia launched

Moon phase Tuesday 23

Uranus at opposition

1968: First powered flight of the HL-10 lifting body
2007: STS-120 Discovery launched
2012: Soyuz TMA-06M launched carrying ISS Expedition 33/34 crew

Moon phase Wednesday 24

Uranus 5° north of Moon
Full Moon 12:45 PM ET

1851: William Lassell discovers Uranus moons Umbriel & Ariel
1946: First photo of Earth taken from space
: 199th and final X-15 flight
1998: Deep Space 1 launched
2001: Mars Odyssey arrives at Mars
2007: Chang'e-1 lunar spacecraft launched

Moon phase Thursday 25

1671: Giovanni Cassini discovers Iapetus, moon of Saturn
1877: Henry Norris Russell born
1975: Venera 10 lands on Venus
2006: STEREO spacecraft launched

Moon phase Friday 26

Venus in inferior conjunction

1977: Fifth and final glide test of Space Shuttle Enterprise
2004: Cassini spacecraft completes first flyby of Titan

Moon phase Saturday 27

1961: SA-1 launched, first Saturn rocket
2003: ISS Expedition 7 crew returns to Earth after 184 days in orbit

Moon phase Sunday 28

1971: Britain launches its first satellite
1974: Luna 23 launched
2009: Ares I-X test flight

Suggestions for new history dates or better links? Corrections for errors on this page? Please e-mail me.