New Videos to View The Dragon and The Swan; Seeing a Star in a new light

Thunderstorms the last two days has stopped me from getting out. So in lieu of that I wanted to share some videos from YouTube from NASA and Science Friday that I found interesting and I hope you do also.

The first video is from the Spitzer Space Telescope and it is an area known by most as Messier 17, the Swan Nebula. Spitzer has used its infra red capacity to find a dragon lurking next to the Swan. Also, right next to the Swan is a bubble where Class O stars are emerging out from the Sagittarius arm. Here's the link:

The Dragon and the Swan

The next video, Seeing a Star in a new light is about how NASA's SDO or Solar Dynamics Observatory is taking images of our star, Sol or the Sun. There are some interesting shots here and I enjoyed the Corona Holes.

Seeing a Star in a New Light

Finally, a fun video called What's Up for July? Dark Nebula from the JPL and Jane Houston Jones (hope I spelled that correctly). The video reviews the history of dark nebula (quickly) the differences between them, an emission and a reflection nebula (in case you don't know) and what dark nebula you can go and easily see this month. I haven't seen the pipe nebula so next time out . . . .

What's Up for July? Dark Nebula

Well, I should get back to observing tonight so I'll have more to post. Monday through Thursday of next week look really good so lots of observing coming up!

Edit: Got out to a wonderful mountain site that I'll return to either Monday or Tuesday or both nights. The rest of this blog will be postpone until Friday or Sunday of next week. GONE OBSERVING FINALLY!


  1. Anonymous7/11/2010


    Newbie here in Fredericksburg VA. I'm getting ready to go outside and take a look at the night sky through the XT6 loaner from my local astronomy club, so I won't be long here. Found your site because I'm researching my first telescope purchase. Today, I was searching everything I could find on the XX14i and stumbled onto your site.

    A couple hours later, I realized I was like Alice falling through the rabbit hole. Thanks for taking the time to share your work. You've given me more ideas than I can count, and I don't even think I went back on your site beyond June of this year! Like Arnold, "I'll be back."



  2. Thanks! I just sold my XT6 and it was a good learners scope. Love the XX14i. Was up at 10,000 feet last night and had a marvelous time. Going back up there on either Monday or Tuesday night and out in the desert for the other night and probably Wednesday. Love this time of the month around new moon.

    If you know the constellation Sagittarius go to the top star in the teapot. Up and to the right is a nice Globular Cluster. Then go back to Kaus B. that star on top of the teapot and work your way up and to the right. You'll run into the Lagoon Nebula and a couple of other things if you go up and work your way back to the left. Lots of fun stuff in that part of the sky.

    Probably the best advice I can give to anyone new is stick with it. Remember its a journey and enjoy the frustrations along with the accomplishments and joys of finding stuff, its all part of the experience and in many ways resembles life. You've just given me an idea for a blog about how observing and one's attitude towards it resembles in many ways our attitude towards life. Thanks and good hunting tonight. Oh, most important, just enjoy your time outside!