AirToob Lightning
(Original post: July 14th, 2010)


Extracts from the page:

This is the extraordinary place where we all live - the Universe.

The picture is the first full-sky image from Europe's Planck telescope which was sent into space last year to survey the "oldest light" in the cosmos - dating from only 380,000 years after the Big Bang.

It shows what is visible beyond the Earth to instruments that are sensitive to light at very long wavelengths - much longer than what we can sense with our eyes.

Dominating the foreground are large segments of our Milky Way Galaxy.

The bright horizontal line running the full length of the image is the galaxy's main disc - the plane in which the Sun and the Earth also reside.

This is where most stars in the Milky Way form today; but because this picture records only light at long wavelengths (microwaves to the very far infrared), what we actually see are not stars at all.

Rather, what we see is the stuff that goes into making stars - lots of dust and gas.

Of particular note are the huge streamers of cold dust that reach thousands of light-years above and below the galactic plane.

As beautiful as the Milky Way appears, its emission must be removed if scientists are to get an even better view of its mottled backdrop, coloured here in magenta and yellow.

This is the famous cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation, and a key target of the Planck mission.

The CMB is the "first light". It is the light that was finally allowed to move out across space once a post-Big-Bang Universe had cooled sufficiently to permit the formation of hydrogen atoms.


Read the full article here.


From my web site:

[Some thoughts on Science vs. Religion]