I fell in love with a similar piece at the Tucson mineral fair some years ago, though I sadly could not afford the price (in fact everything I really liked there was well beyond my modest means, I could easily have blown several million dollars over the month had I had it). As the water rich fluids in the granite pegmatite were cooling and precipitating their dissolved contents onto growing crystals, a lovely spear of bright blue tourmaline was enwrapped in a growing quartz crystal, testifying to the dance of energy and chemical affinity that affects the final form of all cooling magmas.
One of the most striking things about snorkeling in the Galapagos was how loud it was underwater. There were hardly any boats nearby, but every time my ears dipped below the surface, I could hear a constant cacophony of sound. Some it came from waves against the sand, some of it was the sound of parrotfish nibbling on coral, but a lot of it was likely the work of a culprit I couldn’t see hidden in the sand: the pistol shrimp.
These small crustaceans hunt with an oversized claw capable of snapping shut at around 100 kph. When the two halves of the claw come together, they push out a high-speed jet of water. High velocity means low pressure - a low enough pressure, in fact, to drop nearby water below its vapor pressure, causing bubbles to form and expand. These cavitation bubbles collapse quickly under the hydrostatic pressure of the surrounding water, creating a distinctive pop that makes the pistol shrimp one of the loudest sea creatures around. (Image credit: BBC Earth Unplugged, source; research credit: M. Versluis et al.)
All week we’re celebrating the Galapagos Islands here on FYFD. Check out previous posts in the series here.
Light curves of the seven TRAPPIST-1 planets as they transit
This diagram shows how the light of the dim red ultra cool dwarf star TRAPPIST-1 fades as each of its seven known planets passes in front of it and blocks some of its light. The larger planets create deeper dips and the more distance ones have longer lasting transits as they are orbiting more slowly. These data were obtained from observations made with the NASA Spitzer Space Telescope.
Thirst Party Saturday Crew, welcome aboard! This is my first try at a
soulmate AU so I hope you like it! Tagging @tox-moxley, @oraclegazes, and of course, our stalwart captain @hardcorewwetrash! Enjoy!
@novel1: So many Great projects that never got released. 😅 This was one of my favorites. I’ve done records for, #Beyonce, #JeniferHudson, #DrDre, #Eminem, #natashabedingfield just to name a few that some times don’t make the cut, maybe cause of an album change or politics with the labels, the song would be mixed mastered and credited but more times than often some songs get dropped last minute or even WHOLE projects just never makes it to the shelves. Well this is probably one of my favorites. “Over You” written and produced by me and @dallasaustins. Wow this is when we would be in Darp Studios cranking out records back to back me and Dallas. And I would say @jcchasezofficial is probably one of the most underrated songwriters & vocalist. I often like the songs I do for artist that are unreleased more than the ones the artist actually pick from me. lol got so many records in my vault probably from your favorite artist you all would not believe. So Just because you don’t see or hear from me doesn’t mean I’m not working. I like being behind the scenes and It’s a blessing to work with some great people and still it continues. 😝
#jcchasez #Nsync #eentertainment #MTV #ThrowbackClassic
VLA REVEALS NEW OBJECT NEAR SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE IN FAMOUS GALAXY
Pointing the Very Large Array (VLA) at a famous galaxy for the first time in two decades, a team of astronomers got a big surprise, finding that a bright new object had appeared near the galaxy’s core. The object, the scientists concluded, is either a very rare type of supernova explosion or, more likely, an outburst from a second supermassive black hole closely orbiting the galaxy’s primary, central supermassive black hole.
The astronomers observed Cygnus A, a well-known and often-studied galaxy discovered by radio-astronomy pioneer Grote Reber in 1939. The radio discovery was matched to a visible-light image in 1951, and the galaxy, some 800 million light-years from Earth, was an early target of the VLA after its completion in the early 1980s. Detailed images from the VLA published in 1984 produced major advances in scientists’ understanding of the superfast “jets” of subatomic particles propelled into intergalactic space by the gravitational energy of supermassive black holes at the cores of galaxies.
“This new object may have much to tell us about the history of this galaxy,” said Daniel Perley, of the Astrophysics Research Institute of Liverpool John Moores University in the U.K., lead author of a paper to appear in the Astrophysical Journal [http://apj.aas.org, preprint will appear on arXiv.org by tomorrow morning] announcing the discovery.
“The VLA images of Cygnus A from the 1980s marked the state of the observational capability at that time,” said Rick Perley, of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). “Because of that, we didn’t look at Cygnus A again until 1996, when new VLA electronics had provided a new range of radio frequencies for our observations.” The new object does not appear in the images made then.
“However, the VLA’s upgrade that was completed in 2012 made it a much more powerful telescope, so we wanted to have a look at Cygnus A using the VLA’s new capabilities,” Perley said.
Daniel and Rick Perley, along with Vivek Dhawan, and Chris Carilli, both of NRAO, began the new observations in 2015, and continued them in 2016.
“To our surprise, we found a prominent new feature near the galaxy’s nucleus that did not appear in any previous published images. This new feature is bright enough that we definitely would have seen it in the earlier images if nothing had changed,” said Rick Perley. “That means it must have turned on sometime between 1996 and now,” he added.
The scientists then observed Cygnus A with the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) in November of 2016, clearly detecting the new object. A faint infrared object also is seen at the same location in Hubble Space Telescope and Keck observations, originally made between 1994 and 2002. The infrared astronomers, from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, had attributed the object to a dense group of stars, but the dramatic radio brightening is forcing a new analysis.
What is the new object? Based on its characteristics, the astronomers concluded it must be either a supernova explosion or an outburst from a second supermassive black hole near the galaxy’s center. While they want to watch the object’s future behavior to make sure, they pointed out that the object has remained too bright for too long to be consistent with any known type of supernova.
“Because of this extraordinary brightness, we consider the supernova explanation unlikely,” Dhawan said.
While the new object definitely is separate from Cygnus A’s central supermassive black hole, by about 1,500 light-years, it has many of the characteristics of a supermassive black hole that is rapidly feeding on surrounding material.
“We think we’ve found a second supermassive black hole in this galaxy, indicating that it has merged with another galaxy in the astronomically-recent past,” Carilli said. “These two would be one of the closest pairs of supermassive black holes ever discovered, likely themselves to merge in the future.”
The astronomers suggested that the second black hole has become visible to the VLA in recent years because it has encountered a new source of material to devour. That material, they said, could either be gas disrupted by the galaxies’ merger or a star that passed close enough to the secondary black hole to be shredded by its powerful gravity.
“Further observations will help us resolve some of these questions. In addition, if this is a secondary black hole, we may be able to find others in similar galaxies,” Daniel Perley said.
Rick Perley was one of the astronomers who made the original Cygnus A observations with the VLA in the 1980s. Daniel Perley is his son, now also a research astronomer.
“Daniel was only two years old when I first observed Cygnus A with the VLA,” Rick said. As a high school student in Socorro, New Mexico, Daniel used VLA data for an award-winning science fair project that took him to the international level of competition, then went on to earn a doctoral degree in astronomy.
Also at the time of those first VLA observations of Cygnus A, Carilli and Dhawan were office mates as graduate students at MIT.
Carilli, now NRAO’s Chief Scientist, was Rick’s graduate student while working as a predoctoral fellow at NRAO. His doctoral dissertation was on detailed analysis of 1980s VLA images of Cygnus A.
TOP IMAGE….Artist’s conception of newly-discovered secondary supermassive black hole orbiting the main, central supermassive black hole of galaxy Cygnus A. Credit: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF
UPPER IMAGE….VLA radio images (orange) of central region of Cygnus A, overlaid on Hubble Space Telescope image, from 1989 and 2015. Animated GIF. Credit: Perley, et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF, NASA
CENTRE IMAGE….VLA radio image (orange) of central region of Cygnus A, overlaid on Hubble Space Telescope image, from 1989. edit: Perley, et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF, NASA
LOWER IMAGE….2015 VLA radio image (orange) of Cygnus A, overlaid on Hubble Space Telescope image. Credit: Perley, et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF, NASA
BOTTOM IMAGE….1989 VLA radio image of the central region of Cygnus A.
Credit: Perley, et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF
LAST IMAGE….2015 VLA radio image of the central region of Cygnus A.
Credit: Perley, et al., NRAO
If you’ve ever popped open a chilled bottle of champagne, you’ve probably witnessed the gray-white cloud of mist that forms as the cork flies. Opening the bottle releases a spurt of high-pressure carbon dioxide gas, although that’s not what you see in the cloud. The cloud consists of water droplets from the ambient air, driven to condense by a sudden drop in temperature caused by the expansion of the escaping carbon dioxide. Scientifically speaking, this is known as adiabatic expansion; when a gas expands in volume, it drops in temperature. This is why cans of compressed air feel cold after you’ve released a few bursts of air.
If your champagne bottle is cold (a) or cool (b), the gray-white water droplet cloud is what you see. But if your champagne is near room temperature ( c ), something very different happens: a blue fog forms inside the bottle and shoots out behind the cork. To understand why, we have to consider what’s going on in the bottle before and after the cork pops.
A room temperature bottle of champagne is at substantially higher pressure than one that’s chilled. That means that opening the bottle makes the gas inside undergo a bigger drop in pressure, which, in turn, means stronger adiabatic expansion. Counterintuitively, the gas escaping the warm champagne actually gets colder than the gas escaping the chilled champagne because there’s a bigger pressure drop driving it. That whoosh of carbon dioxide is cold enough, in fact, for some of the gas to freeze in that rushed escape. The blue fog is the result of tiny dry ice crystals scattering light inside the bottleneck.
That flash of blue is only momentary, though, and the extra drop in temperature won’t cool your champagne at all. Liquids retain heat better than gases do. For more, on champagne physics check out these previous posts. (Image and research credit: G. Liger-Belair et al.; submitted by David H.)
If you dropped a water balloon on a bed of nails, you’d expect it to burst spectacularly. And you’d be right – some of the time. Under the right conditions, though, you’d see what a high-speed camera caught in the animation above: a pancake-shaped bounce with nary a leak. Physically, this is a scaled-up version of what happens to a water droplet when it hits a superhydrophobic surface.
Water repellent superhydrophobic surfaces are covered in microscale roughness, much like a bed of tiny nails. When the balloon (or droplet) hits, it deforms into the gaps between posts. In the case of the water balloon, its rubbery exterior pulls back against that deformation. (For the droplet, the same effect is provided by surface tension.) That tension pulls the deformed parts of the balloon back up, causing the whole balloon to rebound off the nails in a pancake-like shape. For more, check out this video on the student balloon project or the original water droplet research. (Image credits: T. Hecksher et al., Y. Liu et al.; via The New York Times; submitted by Justin B.)