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January 26, 2009 - Ungrateful Kids

Ungrateful Kids A molecular cloud spends the best years of its life creating the perfect conditions for new stars to be born, and what thanks does it get? If you asked the Carina Nebula, the answer would be “not much.” The massive young stars that were born inside this stellar nursery 9,000 light-years away are radiating enough energy to tear the nebula inside out. The most unruly child is Eta Carinae, the brightest star in this image and one of the most massive stars known. Some 150 times the mass of the Sun and 4 million times brighter, Eta Carina is very unstable and prone to periodic changes in brightness. California amateur astronomer R. Jay GaBany remotely operated a twelve-inch telescope in Australia to collect the eighteen hours of starlight that he used to create this breathtaking view.

Image credit: R. Jay GaBany / www.Cosmotography.com


Weekly Calendar

January 26 - February 1, 2009

Holidays - Sky Events - Space History


Moon phase Monday 26

Chinese New Year (4707)

New Moon 2:55 am
Annular solar eclipse visible from Indian Ocean


Moon phase Tuesday 27

Neptune 1.8° south of Moon

1967: Apollo 1 astronauts Grissom, White, and Chaffee die in cockpit fire on launch pad during test


Moon phase Wednesday 28

1611: Johannes Hevelius born
1986: Space Shuttle Challenger explodes, 7 astronauts die


Moon phase Thursday 29

Uranus 5° south of Moon

1964: SA-5 launched, first Saturn I Block 2 rocket
1989: Phobos 2 enters orbit around Mars


Moon phase Friday 30

Venus 3° south of Moon

1964: Ranger 6 launched


Moon phase Saturday 31

Mercury appears stationary

1958: Explorer 1 launched
1961: Mercury Redstone 2 suborbital flight with chimpanzee Ham
1966: Luna 9 launched
1971: Apollo 14 launched
1985: ESA approves the Columbus program


Moon phase Sunday 1

1956: Army Ballistic Missile Agency (ABMA) established
1959: First Titan I launch
2003: Space shuttle Columbia destroyed during reentry; 7 astronauts die

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