Tuesday, December 16, 2014

COLORs in SPACE – NOT WHAT YOU MAY EXPECT…& other truisms!

THE SUN - Picture this – you are in kindergarten and about to draw the big beautiful Sun over your depiction of your family. You grab the yellow crayon. Was that right?

Everything you’ve been told, even if some was scientifically (yellow dwarf) confirms your belief and heck if you look up at thenoon Sun you see, well nothing cause you just burnt you eyeballs out, but basically yellow. So then what color is the Sun? Yellow? No.

In reality there are no flames busting out across space from the Sun. Basically the Sun is white. It burns at about 6000 degrees Kelvin. The reason it looks white to us here on Earth is the same reason that the sky is blue …. The Earth’s atmosphere.

Confused? All the pictures obtained from space – any extraterrestrial photography – is tricky. The pictures that result do not necessarily represent accurately the subject.  None of the cameras photograph in color – the color is added later with filters. Consider the picture below. Awesome looking photo but realistic? Consider the source. Is the source the Hubble? Then mostly the pictures are unrealistic. But if you are talking the picture comes one of the many rovers then mostly.

On Mars the expectation of true colors changes all the time. If it is cloudy, clear, the Sun’s position in the sky, dust in the atmosphere…


BLACK HOLE S – Okay there’s a black hole where the Sun used to be. For simplicities sake we’ll say it is the exact same mass as the Sun. (Mass of the sun = 1.988435 × 10^33 gms - & losing some all the time because it burns the hydrogen fuel, but that’s another story…) Will the Earth be sucked into the vortex like a speck of dust into a Hoover? No. Because they have mass they are subject to the same rules as you & I – they have finite strength. So if we woke up and the Sun was gone replaced with a black hole, we’d be cold, but that’s about all.


DEADLY ASTEROID BELTs – Most of what ‘we’ know about asteroid belts is on the movie screen or the TV. We see our hero navigating a near impossible and chaotic asteroid field where things are packed in so tightly…Now for the reality, if you had to drive through the asteroid belt, you could do it blindfolded. See if the picture below isn’t a tad different than you may have thought!

So basically ask questions, seek data, learn stuff. Heck – we all carry our phones around everywhere – Google it if there’s any doubt!

But in the meantime understand – space is still really cool!

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