Tuesday, June 10, 2008

GLAST telescope to open new window on the universe

Exciting! A new telescope is being launched on Wednesday which scientists hope will provide vital information about the birth and evolution of the cosmos.

WASHINGTON (AFP) - A hi-tech telescope NASA plans to launch on Wednesday hopes to fling open a new window on the Universe, exploring extreme sources of gamma-rays that point to powerful and exotic phenomena.

The Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope, or GLAST, will search for energy blasts that point to black holes and other beasts, and hunt for clues to explain the strange, magnetized neutron stars known as pulsars.

The telescope may also unlock the mysteries of dark matter, which comprises about 25 percent of mass in the Universe but is invisible to the naked eye, compared with the five percent of visible matter.

The remaining 70 percent is known as "dark energy," a little understood phenomenon which is believed to speed the expansion of the Universe.

Scientists hope to gain vital information about the birth and evolution of the cosmos and study how black holes can spew jets of gas at stupendous speeds, according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Link to full story

5 comments:

Jason H. Bowden said...

I love technology. Unfortunately not everyone does; I was accosted by environmental activists today. BP wants to expand their refinery capacity in Whiting, Indiana to process heavy Canadian crude, and the environuts think they're "saving" Mother Earth by fighting Big Oil. I tried to reason with them, but couldn't break through the blind zeal of their anti-corporate jihad.

Consider the inane reasoning at The Environmental Blog. The person claims the amount of material being entered into Lake Michigan is irrelevant, since any amount is sinful. This is a very unscientific way of looking at the matter-- if the impact to human health is statistically insignificant, then BP should proceed. I'm sure the amount of waste coming from little ol' Whiting doesn't even compare to the Goliath several miles up the coast known as the People's Republic of Chicago.

Some people think it is a conspiracy that refinery capacity in the USA is not increased. I disagree -- people are attempting to shut this country down in broad daylight.

Tommy said...

Leave it to Jason to turn a post about a new telescope into a diatribe against them wacko "envirunmentalists"!

One day we will have a telescope so powerful we will be able to spot aliens fucking on other planets!

Stardust said...

One day we will have a telescope so powerful we will be able to spot aliens fucking on other planets!

Tommy, I am very excited about this new telescope and what we will be able to see out there. Hubble has given us unimaginable information, and this new telescope will take us even farther. I am just in awe.

(After reading Jason's comment I had to go back and look at the post again to make sure I was commenting on the right one. I didn't think I wrote anything about environment and Big Oil....had to go re-read my post again. LOL...I thought this post would be a nice positive, interesting distraction from the election bullshit, the oil crisis bullshit, the religious bullshit...guess not!)

Jason H. Bowden said...

Tommy--

Obama: cut Constellation to pay for education

For the children, of course. From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.

Obama is logical though -- if poverty is really an urgent crisis in this country, then space exploration is a luxury we cannot afford.

Half rabbit said...

I hate to be shallow with the news of such a great project, but I love how NASA has an acronym for everything. The logo also looks strangely like a hyperspace portal and considering the flags on the logo...

(Sorry just have to do my part for the world record in topic changes. What are we up to now?
1. Space telescope
2. Environmental activists
3. Refinery capacity conspiracy
4. Another telescope to watch aliens fucking (doesn't god already have one of those?)
5. Politics again
6. NASA's way of creating acronyms
7. The "World War 2 Axis of evil getting together again to make gamma hyperspace machines and conquer the universe"
8. Apologies to Sweden and Italy
9. Links to the logo in question
10. Apologies to all
11. Blaming of the meds