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Space Science

New Horizons Releases Results 60

hendric writes to mention New Horizons had a press conference yesterday for the preliminary results from their Jupiter flyby. Quite a few images are also available on their site, like Europa Rising."
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New Horizons Releases Results

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  • great stuff (Score:2, Interesting)

    very fascinating indeed. did you guys see the pictures of the massive volcanic plume rising from Io? i remember watching Io and the 4 moons of jupiter including Ganemede from my 2.5 inch refracting telescope as a child.
    • by dedazo ( 737510 )
      That photograph of the plume is one of the most amazing pictures I've ever seen. It was Voyager II that first gave us a glimpse of the Loki Patera volcano on Io and that was amazing enough, but that image just takes the cake. It has a ghostly 3-D deal going on that is simply breathtaking.
  • But at least, it is a taking the scenic route.
    • by Jeff DeMaagd ( 2015 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @07:36PM (#18965147) Homepage Journal
      It may be a non-planet, but none of the Kuiper belt objects have been studied yet, and Pluto is a start.

      I wish the astronomy groups would get their adjective usage right, or at least consistent. A dwarf planet is somehow not a planet, but a dwarf star is a star. Sol is a dwarf star, so does that make it not a star? That sort of dissonance makes calling Ceres a planet seem sensible in comparison. Anyway, I support the notion of not calling Pluto a planet, I'm just disappointed that they had to odd twisting of words to do it.
      • by Dr. Eggman ( 932300 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @08:12PM (#18965495)
        Calling the Sun a dwarf star is misleading. In terms of stars there are dwarf and giant categories, but for planets there is (now I guess) dwarf planets, planets, and gas giant planets. Our sun, is a dwarf star, but that is also called a main sequence star. Pluto is not exactly your typical planet it would seem.

        Then again, I am of the mind that says pluto should be considered a planet, since even our own and those like it are dwarfed by the massive giants by many times more than it would seem we dwarf pluto. If we're going to make these kinds of petty changes like with pluto, we should just reorganize the entire system into a single 'collections of matter' scale, starting with the particles, moving up through comets, planets, gas giants, then onto stars, nebula, galaxies, what-have-yous, up to the universe itself. And we'll give these collectives a unified naming scheme so lame and mundane yet extensable and modular that it would make even Taxonomists cry themselves to sleep.
        • I think Neil deGrasse Tyson was onto something about Pluto though, it's mostly a ball of ice that would turn into a comet if it were to ever come as close to the sun as Jupiter is. The fact that it orbits at an angle well outside the ecliptic was another problem in why Pluto didn't fit the planetary sequence very well.

          Gas giants can exist closer to the sun without problems, as witnessed by the discovery of "hot jupiters".
          • by khallow ( 566160 )
            There isn't a "planetary sequence" and I bet Pluto is actually the most common type of body by numbers in the Solar System.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by mandolin ( 7248 )
        It may be a non-planet, but none of the Kuiper belt objects have been studied yet, and Pluto is a start.

        It doesn't negate your point, but Triton (moon of Neptune) was studied by Voyager 2, and is quite likely a captured KBO. I imagine Pluto will look a lot like it.

  • by HaeMaker ( 221642 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @06:35PM (#18964469) Homepage
    That would be a cool picture if it didn't have an ugly cheeto colored banner saying "Europa Rising".

  • by A_Lost_Frenchman ( 1034456 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @06:40PM (#18964537)
    You might want to see the photo of Europa rising from the original website : es/HighRes/050107/050107_01.jpg [] ( Especially after seeing the huge title across the first picture )
  • Where the hell is the trippy 15 minute warp sequence?
  • by Dr. Eggman ( 932300 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @07:10PM (#18964891)
    Only 2994 days until we reach the closest mission path point to Pluto! As official decorate-for-the-holidays time manager for Sears, I have a special talent for knowing when to begin reminding people of important events so I declare the countdown to Pluto to be on! We'll start laying out the plastic globes in 2010...
  • by hendric ( 30596 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @08:33PM (#18965739)
    Before the flyby, the New Horizons science team asked a bunch of us amateurs at [] to search for "pretty pictures", pictures that didn't necessarily have scientific value, but were beautiful and worth taking. Europa Rising and the Io and Europa conjunction [] were the first two returned. The others I suggested were two double shadow transits, a crescent Callisto emerging from behind a crescent Jupiter, and a crescent Ganymede in front of a crescent Jupiter.
    Enjoying my 15 minutes of fame. :)
  • by Jugalator ( 259273 ) on Wednesday May 02, 2007 @08:39PM (#18965809) Journal
    It has already seen Pluto! Twice, even! (one [], two [])

    What are we going all the way there for again?? :-p
      1. "We choose to go to Pluto in 2015 not because it is easy, but because it is hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win."
      2. "Because it's a really cool way to spend $675 million."
      You choose.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by samkass ( 174571 )
        ... seriously, though, the opportunity for a good gravity-assist trajectory was there now, and since Pluto is hurtling away from the sun quickly, if we don't visit it now it'll be a lot less active until our great-grandchildren get the next opportunity.
  • Excellent (Score:2, Interesting)

    by madbawa ( 929673 )
    The pics are excellent and the technology is even more fascinating. I have one quick question though. Its not related to this topic in anyway. Request the mods to please not mark it offtopic as I would really appreciate replies:

    I have seen a lot of photos of the Milky Way galaxy i.e. our galaxy (the pics show it being something of a spiral with our sun as a tiny dot). My question is how are these pics clicked? And how are they transmitted back to earth? As far as I know, to actually click the pic of a galax
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by wwmedia ( 950346 )
      they are computer generated (from data gathered from various telescopes)

      as for probes, only pioneer 10,11 ( Pioneer program [] ) and voyager 1 and 2 Voyager program []

      have left the solar system and are now somewhere in or past the very outer reaches of the solar system (take them millions of years to get to nearest stars??)

      new horizons will be the next probe to join them
    • All images of our galaxy are either composite images based on what we can see from Earth -- a bunch of pictures put together into a whole -- or are not actually our own galaxy, but other similar spiral galaxies, used for illustration.
  • It's sad to me that this story has so few comments. Outer space just holds less and less allure to the populace as time moves forward. Why is that? Especially as we are just starting to get some of the really sci-fi 21st century stuff going. is the 21st century to be the last century of space exploration?

    It's the same with aviation in general, interest has been declining steadily. in 1980 there were 800,000 pilots in the US, now, just about 400,000.

    I do believe that we are losing our exploratory drive; we are becoming more decadent?...nah. We're just exploring other things. Genetics and robotics, both will help us get up there I hope.

    Well, you know what? Space is hard, and far. Maybe we just aren't ready for the journey yet.

    hopefully someday at least our robots will be - they're already doing a bang-up job.
    • Interest for space will come back some day. As it is right now, the world is headed for a second middle ages, with the difference that it will not last 1000+ years, due to technological developers. In this new middle ages, the vast majority of the population will fall for religions, astrology, and stuff, and there are going to be great wars.

      When we come out of that, there is going to be a renewed interest for space. Too bad we are not going to be around to witness it.
    • by noims ( 23711 )
      > Well, you know what? Space is hard, and far. Maybe we just aren't ready for the journey yet.

      Space isn't that far away... only about an hour's drive, albeit straight up.
  • If I calculated it right...putting it in those terms just makes it that much more impressive to me.

How much net work could a network work, if a network could net work?