lunes, 28 de abril de 2014

Photos: Sharpest Views of the Cosmos Ever

"Astronomers have built a new astro-camera that, when fitted onto the largest observatories on Earth, can snap photos of the universe twice as sharp as the famed Hubble Space Telescope.

With the newly developed technology, giant telescopes can reach their theoretical limits of resolution in visible light —something that was just not possible, until now, because of atmospheric turbulence causing blurry visible light images. (Related: The Largest Baby Star, Ever?)

“It was very exciting to see this new camera make the night sky look sharper than has ever before been possible,” said Laird Close, the project’s principal scientist at the University of Arizona in a press statement.

“We can, for the first time, make long-exposure images that resolve objects just 0.02 arcseconds across — the equivalent of a dime viewed from more than a hundred miles away. At that resolution, you could see a baseball diamond on the Moon,” said Laird Close, lead astronomer for the MagAO project.

Called Adaptive Secondary Mirror (ASM), this new imaging technology sits high above the primary mirror of the telescope, working to counter the atmospheric turbulence by changing the shape of its thin curved glass mirror 1,000 times each second.

“As a result, we can see the visible sky more clearly than ever before,” said Close. “It’s almost like having a telescope with a 21-foot mirror in space.”

Read More-> National Geographic

~The Moon's in Aries until Sunday at 6:13 am (PDT) when She enters Taurus and is therein honored like a dignified guest.