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September 13, 2010 - Blowing in the Wind

Blowing in the Wind This three-dimensional-looking Hubble Space Telescope image shows the edge of a giant gaseous cavity within the star-forming region called NGC 3324. Set amid a backdrop of softly glowing blue light are wispy tendrils of gas as well as dark trunks of dust that are light-years in height. The glowing nebula has been carved out by intense ultraviolet radiation and stellar winds from several hot young stars. A cluster of extremely massive stars located in the center of the nebula (well outside this image to the right) is responsible for the ionization of the nebula and excavation of the cavity. The radiation from those stars is a wind blowing the denser dust and gas on the left, creating the sharply defined boundary. NGC 3324 is in the constellation Carina, about 7,200 light-years away from Earth.

Image credit: NASA, ESA, and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

Weekly Calendar

September 13-19, 2010

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History

Moon phase Monday 13

Pluto appears stationary

1977: Second glide test of Space Shuttle Enterprise
1978: Venera 12 launched

Moon phase Tuesday 14

1966: Gemini XI, docked with Agena booster rocket, reaches 850-mile-high orbit

Moon phase Wednesday 15

First Quarter Moon 1:50 AM ET

1965: “Lost in Space” premieres
1968: Zond 5 launched, first circumlunar spaceflight with living creatures (tortoises)

Moon phase Thursday 16

1848: First observation of Hyperion, moon of Saturn
1996
: STS-79 Atlantis launched

Moon phase Friday 17

Yom Kippur begins at sunset

1789: William Herschel discovers Mimas
1857: Konstantin Tsiolkovsky born
1930: Ed Mitchell born
1959: First powered flight of X-15
1976: First rollout of space shuttle Enterprise

Moon phase Saturday 18

1964: Saturn SA-7 launched
1977: Voyager 1 takes photo of Earth and Moon together in space
2006: Anousheh Ansari becomes first woman space tourist

Moon phase Sunday 19

Mercury at greatest elongation (18° W)

Suggestions for new history dates or better links? Corrections for errors on this page? Please e-mail me.