Another Day, Another Cosmic Eyeball

May 11, 2009

cosmic eye.jpg

We've already seen God's hand, God's eye and the Eye of Sauron, so why not another cosmic ball of eye? This here is the latest in a batch of images from the Hubble Space Bubblescope of planetary nebula Knockout 4-55. Enter Punch-Out tie-in here. I AM THE L337 BLOGGAR!

Planetary nebulas have nothing to do with planets. They were named so because in early telescopes, they had the fuzzy look of planets in our outer solar system. In fact planetary nebulas sit throughout our galaxy. This one contains the outer layers of a red giant star that were expelled into interstellar space when the star was in the late stages of its life.

Ultraviolet radiation emitted from the remaining hot core of the star ionizes the ejected gas shells, causing them to glow.

In the specific case of K 4-55, a bright inner ring is surrounded by a bipolar structure. The entire system is then surrounded by a faint red halo, seen in the emission by nitrogen gas. This multi-shell structure is fairly uncommon in planetary nebulae.

BOOM, YOU DIDN'T EVEN KNOW YOU WAS GETTING ASTRONOMY LESSONED! Now, for your astrology lesson: it's all bullshit. Also, you will make decisions soon. NO I AM NOT HIGH. Tell me, if eyes are the windows to one's soul, is a cosmic eye THE WINDOW TO ANOTHER DIMENSION?! And, if so, is there a dinosaur park there? ZOMG -- quick, tie me to a rocket engine!

Hubble Photographs Giant Eye in Space [yahoonews]

Thanks to Watch-303, who may or may not be operating out of Boulder/Denver region.

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