James Webb Space Telescope First Image
NASA has released the first image from the James Webb Space Telescope – more of a “teaser” image to get everybody hyped-up for more images to come today… And the hype worked – President Biden even got a piece of the action!
This deep field, taken by Webb’s Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam), is a composite made from images at different wavelengths, totaling 12.5 hours – achieving depths at infrared wavelengths beyond the Hubble Space Telescope’s deepest fields, which took weeks.
While I was writing this post, NASA released four additional images – I’ll be covering those in a separate post.
Morning: Venus, Uranus and Mars appear in the eastern predawn sky.
Morning: Jupiter and Saturn appear in southern predawn sky.
Evening: The Moon appears in the southeastern sky after sunset on July 12th.
Early morning: The Moon appears near Saturn in the southeastern sky after midnight on July 15th and 16th.
Early morning: The Moon appears near Jupiter in the eastern sky after midnight on July 19th.
- The Moon is a Waxing Gibbous – visible to the southeast in early evening, and up for most of the night.
- The Full Moon occurs on Wednesday July 13th – rising at sunset, visible high in the sky around midnight, and visible all night.
- After July 13th, the Moon will be a Waning Gibbous – rising after sunset, visible high in the sky after midnight, and visible to the southwest after sunrise.
If you click on the Moon image above, or click this link, you will go to NASA’s Moon Phase and Libration, 2022 page – it will show you what the Moon looks like right now. If you click the image on that page, you will download a high-rez TIFF image annotated with the names of prominent features – helpful for logging your lunar observations!
The Sun has seven named sunspots.
Spaceweather.com says: “Multiple sunspots (especially AR3056) are crackling with C-class solar flares.” And “Minor G1-class geomagnetic storms are possible on July 13th when a high-speed stream of solar wind is expected to hit Earth’s magnetic field. The stream is a mix of plasma flowing from two small holes in the sun’s atmosphere. Any auroras will have to compete with the bright light of a full Moon.”
The Sun seen in 193 angstroms on July 11th.
No large coronal holes appear on the Sun’s face; the north pole appears to have reopened
The Sun seen in 304 angstroms on July 11th.
Very active Sun – filaments cover the Sun’s face, flares crackle everywhere, lots of prominences.
Videos courtesy of NASA/SDO and the AIA, EVE, and HMI science teams.
You can view the Sun in near real-time, in multiple frequencies here: SDO-The Sun Now.
You can create your own time-lapse movies of the Sun here: AIA/HMI Browse Data.
You can browse all the SDO images of the Sun from 2010 to the present here: Browse SDO archive.
Amateur Solar Astrophotography
Image details: 30 minutes of images from this morning of the south west limb prominence lifting off. Shot with a 4 inch ED refractor @ f/28 with a Daystar iON 0.8A H-alpha filter and ZWO ASI174MM CMOS video camera.
Solar wind speed is 451.8 km/sec ▼ with a density of 4.27 protons/cm3 ▼ at 0226 UT.
Click here to see a near real-time animation of the corona and solar wind from the Solar & Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO).
- Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) discovered this month: 28, this year: 1409 (+51), all time: 29,223 (-58)
- Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs): 2270 (updated 2022-06-14)
- Total Minor Planets discovered (MPC): 1,207,337 (-76 updated 2022-07-12)
Upcoming Earth-asteroid encounters:
|Asteroid||Date(UT)||Miss Distance||Velocity (km/s)||Diameter (m)|
|2022 NO||2022-Jul-06||13.2 LD||10.9||31|
|2022 NE||2022-Jul-06||0.4 LD||10.7||7|
|2022 NE1||2022-Jul-06||1.6 LD||13.7||21|
|2022 NQ||2022-Jul-07||15.6 LD||8.5||25|
|2022 NF||2022-Jul-07||0.2 LD||11.4||7|
|2022 NR||2022-Jul-10||1 LD||8.3||25|
|2022 NS||2022-Jul-10||3.4 LD||11.9||15|
|2019 NW5||2022-Jul-10||14.9 LD||16||62|
|2022 NC1||2022-Jul-11||16.9 LD||9||32|
|2022 NH||2022-Jul-11||3.9 LD||10.1||21|
|2015 OQ21||2022-Jul-12||18.3 LD||6.6||9|
|2022 NF1||2022-Jul-12||5.1 LD||12.8||34|
|2022 NX||2022-Jul-12||11.5 LD||4.6||17|
|2022 NY||2022-Jul-14||7.2 LD||8.2||26|
|2022 NC||2022-Jul-14||7.6 LD||7.5||33|
|2022 NJ||2022-Jul-15||3.4 LD||8.9||24|
|2022 LR1||2022-Jul-16||9.3 LD||4.7||42|
|2022 KY4||2022-Jul-17||15.9 LD||7.6||91|
|2021 OT||2022-Jul-17||16.5 LD||11.2||20|
|2017 RX2||2022-Jul-24||17.2 LD||14.2||17|
|2022 ML3||2022-Jul-26||7.6 LD||1.5||13|
|2016 CZ31||2022-Jul-29||7 LD||15.6||129|
|2020 PP1||2022-Aug-01||13.1 LD||3.7||17|
|2020 PN1||2022-Aug-03||9.7 LD||4.6||29|
|2015 FF||2022-Aug-12||11.2 LD||9.2||17|
|2019 AV13||2022-Aug-22||19.1 LD||8.8||135|
|2020 QW3||2022-Aug-22||14.1 LD||18.1||30|
|2015 QH3||2022-Aug-22||5.6 LD||7||14|
|2017 BU||2022-Aug-29||15.8 LD||7||32|
|2021 CQ5||2022-Sep-01||8.7 LD||13.5||7|
On July 11, 2022, the NASA All Sky Fireball Network reported 8 fireballs!
Position of the planets & several spacecraft in the inner solar system on July 12th:
Position of the planets in the middle solar system – July 2022:
Position of the planets in the outer solar system first half of 2022:
Solar System News
Has it been six years already!?
James Webb Space Telescope - Images
I’ll be covering these images in a separate post.
Lucy Mission Solar Panel Deployment
Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter
HiRISE - Beautiful Mars
International Space Station
Space Debris Avoidance
419.08 ppm #CO2
Earth Surface Mineral Dust Source Investigation Mission
See a list of current NASA missions here: https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/missions?mission_status=current
ex·o·plan·et /ˈeksōˌplanət/, noun: a planet orbiting a star other than the Sun.
* Confirmed Planets Discovered by TESS refers to the number planets that have been published in the refereed astronomical literature.
* TESS Project Candidates refers to the total number of transit-like events that appear to be astrophysical in origin, including false positives as identified by the TESS Project.
* TESS Project Candidates Yet To Be Confirmed refers to the number of TESS Project Candidates that have not yet been dispositioned as a Confirmed Planet or False Positive.
June 30, 2022
Ten Planets Added, Including Two Rocky Neighbors
This week’s 10 new planets include two super-Earths in the HD 260655 system that are only 33 light-years from Earth, making them some of the closest-known rocky, transiting exoplanets to date. Read about it in NASA’s Discovery Alert.
All of the new planets are HD 150010 b, HD 174205 b, HD 19615 b, HD 260655 b & c, HD 33142 d, TOI-2081 b, TOI-3629 b, TOI-3714 b, and TOI-4479 b. Find their data in the Planetary Systems Table and its companion table, the Planetary Systems Composite Parameters.
We’ve also added new parameter sets for 12 planets already in the archive: iot Dra b, TOI-1696 b, TOI-1807 b, HD 29021 b, HD 81040 b, HD 87883 b, HD 98649 b, HD 106252 b, HD 106515 A b, HD 171238 b, HD 196067 b, and HD 221420 b. – NASA
All These Worlds
A slideshow with exoplanet images I’ve created for these posts:
SpaceWeather.com Realtime Aurora Gallery: https://spaceweathergallery.com/aurora_gallery.html
Latest Aurora Oval Forecast
- Visit an International Dark Sky Park: https://www.darksky.org/our-work/conservation/idsp/parks/
- If you live in Michigan, visit the Michigan Dark Skies site: https://sites.lsa.umich.edu/darkskies/
Barred spiral galaxy UGC 12158 was brought up during last night’s meeting of the Warren Astronomical Society – it’s very likely what our Milky Way looks like.
Messier Tour: M22 – The Sagittarius Cluster
Messier 22 (M22) is a globular cluster located near the Milky Way bulge, the tightly packed group of stars near the galactic centre. The cluster lies in the constellation Sagittarius. It is one of the brightest globular clusters in the sky and was one of the first objects of this kind to be discovered and studied.
M22 is also one of the nearest globulars to the solar system. The only globular cluster closer to us is Messier 4, located in the neighboring constellation Scorpius. M22 is elliptical in shape and lies at a distance of 10,600 light years from Earth. Its designation in the New General Catalogue is NGC 6656. – messier-objects.com
Two black holes were discovered in M22 and confirmed by the Chandra X-ray telescope in 2012. The objects have between 10 and 20 solar masses. Their discovery suggests that there may be between 5 and 100 black holes within the cluster and that multiple black holes may exist in other clusters as well. The presence of black holes and their interaction with the stars of M22 could explain the cluster’s unusually large central region.
The two black holes, designated M22-VLA1 and M22-VLA2, are both part of binary systems. Each has a companion star and is pulling matter from it. The stolen material – gas and dust – forms an accretion disk around each black hole and emissions from these disks are what scientists were able to detect. Without them, the black holes would have stayed hidden.
Messier 22 is one of only four globular clusters that contain a planetary nebula. The only other globular listed in Messier’s catalogue known to have a planetary nebula is Messier 15, located in the constellation Pegasus.
The nebula in M22, catalogued as GJJC1 or IRAS 18333-2357, was discovered by the infrared satellite IRAS in 1986 and identified as a planetary nebula in 1989. The nebula is only 3 arc seconds in diameter and lies 1 arc minute to the south of the cluster’s centre. It is extremely difficult for observers to find. The nebula has an estimated age of only 6,000 years and has a blue star at its core. – messier-objects.com
Location of M21 in the Milky Way
Unlike many of the other globular clusters I’ve covered in my Messier series, M22 lies within the disk of the galaxy, rather than somewhere above or below it.
Here’s my obligatory “What would a planet look like if it were near that Messier object” pic:
Here are shots of the surface of the same planet at sunrise and midday.
Cover Image: Messier 22. Credit: Bob Birket / Sky and Telescope
Messier Object List: [Link]
Software Apps used for this post:
NASA Eyes on the Solar System: an immersive 3D solar system and space mission simulator – free for the PC /MAC.
Stellarium: a free web-based planetarium app. It’s a great tool for planning observing sessions. Latest update released on July 7, 2022.
SpaceEngine – Explore the universe in 3D and VR! Latest update released on July 6, 2022.
Worldwide Telescope – operated by the American Astronomical Society (AAS). Latest update released on March 31, 2022.