(Old phpBB) Backgrounds by NASA
From time to time, I plan to change this board’s background from my own works of art to actual space pictures from NASA. The cool part about NASA pictures is that they are copyright free, thus free to use. NASA does ask that their credits be displayed with their images, unless the pictures are used for advertisements. I have no problem with giving NASA due credit for their work, thus, the information about the current background image, and the NASA credits, follow below.

By the way, the background image is a bit large, so let me know if this slows down the board too much for you. If it is a problem, I will see about finding another, smaller, image to use.


Quote:History Revealed

More than 12 billion years of cosmic history are shown in this panoramic, full-color view of thousands of galaxies.

[Image: 415443main_south-field-full_small.jpg]

This image, taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, was made from mosaics taken in September and October 2009 with the newly installed Wide Field Camera 3 and in 2004 with the Advanced Camera for Surveys and covers a portion of the southern field of a large galaxy census called the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey, a deep-sky study by several observatories to trace the evolution of galaxies.

The image reveals galaxy shapes that appear increasingly chaotic at each earlier epoch, as galaxies grew through accretion, collisions and mergers, which range from the mature spirals and ellipticals in the foreground, to smaller, fainter, irregularly shaped galaxies, most of which are farther away, and therefore existed farther back in time. These smaller galaxies are considered the building blocks of the larger galaxies we see today.

The image shows a rich tapestry of 7,500 galaxies stretching back through most of the universe's history. The closest galaxies seen in the foreground emitted their observed light about a billion years ago. The farthest galaxies, a few of the very faint red specks, are seen as they appeared more than 13 billion years ago, or roughly 650 million years after the Big Bang. This mosaic spans a slice of space that is equal to about a third of the diameter of the full moon (10 arc minutes).

Image Credit: NASA, ESA, R. Windhorst, S. Cohen, and M. Mechtley (Arizona State University, Tempe), R. O'Connell (University of Virginia), P. McCarthy (Carnegie Observatories), N. Hathi (University of California, Riverside), R. Ryan (University of California, Davis), and H. Yan (Ohio State University)
"I reject your reality and substitute my own." Adam Savage of the MythBusters
Although I liked the previous NASA image, it clashed a little with my current theme colors for this board. I decided to look for another NASA image to use, and found The Ant Nebula image. I did rework the pictures some, to darken it quit a bit and to increase the contrast some, as well as doing some cut and paste reworking of the image so it worked better as a background for this board, and then reduced the size of the original image some. Oh, and I also flipped the image and soften the sharp edges of some of the stars that were originally cut off at one edge of the picture. This makes it harder to tell where the top and bottom of the picture tile together when scrolling down the page.

What I like about this image is that it is of a star, very much like our sun, but at the end stage of its lifecycle. There are many different kinds of nebulae that form from stars like our sun in their final death throws. This is one of the more unusual, and spectacular nebular formations that the sun very well might make in its final days before it turns into a white dwarf star.

The NASA info and credits for this image follow below.

Note, the image below is of the original, unaltered (except for the reduced size), NASA image.


Quote:Planetary Nebula Mz3: The Ant Nebula
Credit: R. Sahai (JPL) et al., Hubble Heritage Team, ESA, NASA

[Image: ant_hst_small.jpg]

Explanation: Why isn't this ant a big sphere? Planetary nebula Mz3 is being cast off by a star similar to our Sun that is, surely, round. Why then would the gas that is streaming away create an ant-shaped nebula that is distinctly not round? Clues might include the high 1000-kilometer per second speed of the expelled gas, the light-year long length of the structure, and the magnetism of the star visible above at the nebula's center. One possible answer is that Mz3 is hiding a second, dimmer star that orbits close in to the bright star. A competing hypothesis holds that the central star's own spin and magnetic field are channeling the gas. Since the central star appears to be so similar to our own Sun, astronomers hope that increased understanding of the history of this giant space ant can provide useful insight into the likely future of our own Sun and Earth.
"I reject your reality and substitute my own." Adam Savage of the MythBusters
Well, that last background did not last long. It may show up again, but shortly after I posted it, I found a NASA image that I liked even better.

Below is a small version of the original NASA image, information about the image, and the NASA credits for the image. The version of that image that I have posted as a background for this board has been modified. I did not alter the image's bright or contrast values, but I did chop it up, rearrange the chopped pieces, and then trimmed the image (not necessarily in that order).

I think I am done messing around with the background for now... unless I hear that these larger images slow down the page load time too much for people with slower internet connections. Please let me know if that includes you.

MACJR - E-mail: miniverse(at)msn(dot)com

Quote:NGC 1055: Galaxy in a Box
Image Credit & Copyright: Ken Crawford (Rancho Del Sol Obs.), Collaboration: David Martinez-Delgado (MPIA, IAC), et al.

[Image: NGC1055_crawford_small.jpg]

Explanation: Big, beautiful spiral galaxy NGC 1055 is a dominant member of a small galaxy group a mere 60 million light-years away toward the intimidating constellation Cetus. Seen edge-on, the island universe spans about 100,000 light-years, similar in size to our own Milky Way. Colorful, spiky stars in this cosmic portrait of NGC 1055 are in the foreground, well within the Milky Way. But along with a smattering of more distant background galaxies, the deep image also reveals a curious box-shaped inner halo extending far above and below this galaxy's dusty plane. The halo itself is laced with faint, narrow structures, and could represent the mixed and spread out debris from a satellite galaxy disrupted by the larger spiral some 10 billion years ago.
"I reject your reality and substitute my own." Adam Savage of the MythBusters
Eventually, I decided that real space pictures did not work well on forum pages, so I discontinued using them.

I love real space pictures, but I found that art space pictures work better than real space pictures for my forum pages.

"I reject your reality and substitute my own." Adam Savage of the MythBusters

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