Read these 5 Deep Space Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Space-Astronomy tips and hundreds of other topics.
Pictures of nebulae are beautiful to look at with all their pinks and purples and swirling trails of brightness. But these gaseous clouds serve a larger purpose: the creation of stars. New stars are being formed from that swirling matter, some 100,000 to one million stars within a ten light-year radius.
The discovery of a Type Ia supernova five million light years away may finally answer the question of whether the universe is finite or infinite. All type Ia supernovas regardless of distance emit the same amount of light at a constant rate, which means that they can be used to figure out the distance and velocity of objects in deep space. For those who don't know, if an object in deep space is found to be travelling at a velocity lower than a nearby object, the universe is most likely finite.
Okay, so the colors of a nebula ARE pretty, but why are they there? Believe it or not, it's not God painting a picture. The pinkish red color is the color of ionized hydrogen, the blue-green, which when mixed with the pink looks purple, is the color of ionized oxygen, and the blue is light being reflected from nearby stars.
Anybody can take pictures of deep space. All you need is a camera that can be mounted on a tripod. Once you've chosen a target, set the camera up and open the lens. Pictures should be exposed for less than thirty seconds or you will have star trails which result from the natural movement of the Earth.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|