Ever since humanity began photographing astronomical events, each of us has had the chance to witness cosmic pictures of incredible beauty. This review presents 10 examples of recent space events captured by cameras.
A supernova is born in the galaxy Messier 82
Messier 82 is a cigar-like galaxy in the constellation Ursa Major, about 11 million light years away. On January 21, 2014, for the first time in the past 27 years, a supernova was registered in it.
The discovery was made by astronomy students in London. They accidentally took several photographs of the galaxy Messier 82 that day and, comparing them with early photographs, discovered a new bright star, later named 2014J.
For two years now, the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) has been sending high-resolution videos to Earth showing the processes on our luminary. On February 7-8, 2012, for 30 hours, SDO recorded an unprecedented spectacle: a tornado on the surface of the Sun.
Unlike terrestrial tornadoes, tornadoes on the Sun are not formed from the wind, but because of the powerful magnetic fields between the solar poles.
Comets are guests of the solar system, most often appearing from the Oort cloud at a distance of about a light year from the Sun. They usually rotate in an elliptical orbit, periodically flying into the solar system, and then, leaving, to visit it again decades later.
One of these comets visited us in August 2013. She may have traveled the solar system hundreds or even thousands of times before, but this visit was her last. The cameras of the SOHO (Solar and Heliospherical Observatory) project recorded how a small comet rushed towards the Sun and burned up in its stellar flame.
Solar eclipse on Mars
Solar eclipses can be observed on any planet with natural satellites. However, until August 2013, humanity was forced to confine itself to this spectacle only on Earth, annually observing how the lunar disk completely or partially covers the solar one.
Thanks to the cameras of the Curiosity rover last year, people witnessed a beautiful alien spectacle: Phobos, the largest of Martian's two natural satellites, passed right through the solar disk. The small moon, of course, could not completely cover the star, but it was noted that the Martian sky darkened significantly at this time.
The length of the asteroid (4179) Tautatis is more than 5 km; in a collision with the Earth, this giant could destroy all the fauna on our planet. It is not surprising that when Tautatis flew to us in 2012 at a distance of 6.4 million km - only 18 times the distance from the Earth to the Moon, the cameras of many observatories were directed towards him.
Fortunately, the orbit of the asteroid is such that a collision with it does not threaten us, at least in the next 400 years. The next visit to Earth is expected in 2069.
Rise of the martian moon
Again, the amazing video showing the rise of the Martian satellite Phobos on June 28, 2013 was made by the Curiosity rover. In the above video, the 27-minute rise of the Martian moon is compressed into a 30-second video.
Of course, the sight is not very impressive, since Phobos is many times smaller than our Moon, but the very fact of observing an event taking place on another planet excites the imagination.
Jump of a frog on the background of a rocket launch
Many were sure that this image was photographed, but NASA in its press release assured the public: in September 2013, during the launch of a rocket on the territory of the Wallops Flight Center, an disturbed frog, until then quietly sitting in one of the nearby puddles, really jumped high up.
Obviously, the poor animal was disturbed by the fact that its habitat was turning into hot steam, which forced the amphibian to make an "Olympic" jump against the background of a rocket being launched.
Eclipse from space
A partial solar eclipse on April 29, 2014 could only be observed from some very remote areas of our planet, for example, in Tasmania or Indonesia.
However, the best view of the eclipse was provided by the European Space Agency's Proba-2 satellite in orbit, which recorded this spectacle four times. The images show the moon covering different parts of the solar disk each time.
Earth view from Mars and Saturn
On January 31, 2014, the same Curiosity rover directed its cameras into the sky and filmed a Martian view of our planet and its satellite. Mars from Earth looks like a tiny red dot in the night sky, Earth from the same distance of 159 million km is also a dot, only blue.
A similar image was also taken by the Cassini spacecraft, only from another part of the solar system. On July 19, 2013, he managed to capture our planet from Saturn's orbit. NASA invited all earthlings to turn to Saturn during the shooting and show their friendly smiles to the Lord of the Rings
The birth of a new moon
The same Cassini took many more beautiful pictures during his mission. Thanks to one of the newest photographs, scientists managed to fix the fact of the birth of a new satellite of Saturn.
The alien moon named Peggy, with a diameter of only 0.8 km, recently separated from the Saturnian ring A like a drop of water separating from a rotating wet disk.