Friday pretty picture two-ferDecember 4, 2009
First up, check out this awesome polar ring galaxy from APOD:
Ring galaxies are weird beasts to begin with, with a giant ring of stars, gas, and dust around a central core instead of the usual spiral arms. Polar ring galaxies are even weirder, in that the ring is offset from the axis of the central disk. Think about what it would be like to live on a planet in such a galaxy: depending on where the planet was located and the season, there might be two “milky ways” of light arching over the night sky.
And speaking of the Milky Way, check out these awesome posters celebrating the view of the night sky from the US National Parks. The posters were created by Dr. Tyler Nordgren, who toured the national parks a couple of years ago to document the night sky and educate people about light pollution. I got to see him speak at an SBVAA meeting last year, and I’m looking forward to his forthcoming astrophotography book, which will chronicle his experiences on his national park tour.