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10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby nyker » Wed Oct 16, 2013 5:31 pm

Real nice work. You should take your skills to Mauna Kea in Hawaii at night!

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby mtgirl » Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:52 pm

Not only did I enjoy your pictures, I truly enjoyed reading about your chance encounter with the soldiers on their tribute hike for their fallen fellow soldier. Men of true honor, without a doubt.

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby dillonsarnelli » Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:20 pm

what a great post and story. thanks for sharing.

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby jomagam » Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:42 pm

Somebody more at home in planetariums will probably know this:

If the Solar system is part of the Milky Way, then how come we see it as a distinct bright area in the sky ? Don't all stars we see in the sky belong to the Milky Way ?

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby jaymz » Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:14 pm

jomagam wrote:Somebody more at home in planetariums will probably know this:

If the Solar system is part of the Milky Way, then how come we see it as a distinct bright area in the sky ? Don't all stars we see in the sky belong to the Milky Way ?

This is my amateur understanding (astronomers feel free to correct me):
Not everything we see is a star. Some are other galaxies, which are obviously not part of the Milky Way.
But you are correct, if we see a star with the naked eye, it's already in the Milky Way. When we see that hazy band across the sky, we are looking toward the more concentrated center of the Milky Way, from a side-view angle. We and the other stars we see are also part of that hazy band, but it looks separate because of an optical illusion created by the practically unfathomable size of the Milky Way.
At least that's what I've concluded from my own thoughts, thinking about roughly that same question :)

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby MattVocks » Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:40 am

jaymz is right. Think of the Milky Way as a frisbee. We are somewhere inside the frisbee on the surface. If you look up or down, it is not as concentrated. Look left or right, it will appear thicker, because you are looking out towards the edges.

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby FFLpilot » Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:54 am

jomagam wrote:Somebody more at home in planetariums will probably know this:

If the Solar system is part of the Milky Way, then how come we see it as a distinct bright area in the sky ? Don't all stars we see in the sky belong to the Milky Way ?


You are indeed correct, all the stars we can see with the naked eye (or even marginally-powerful telescopes) are from our own galaxy. The only thing we can see with the naked eye from outside our galaxy is the Andromeda Galaxy. If you don't know how to spot it and you frequent the outdoors at night, you should learn where it is, as it can be quite a sight in dark skies (binoculars can help quite a bit, though you can even see it on dark nights near Denver, despite the light pollution).

The first image was captured at Turquoise Lake this August during the Perseids, and shows the northern Milky Way Galaxy (those stars in the galaxy further from the center than we are). The stars of the constellation Cassiopea are highlighted for reference, as it is always visible in virtually any light-polluted area. This image is a bit unique in that I happened to capture a somewhat-uncommon sight, a persistent train from a meteorite that had passed one to two minutes before (I had my back turned and didn't see it, but caught a glimpse out of the edge of my peripheral vision). These trails are made up of ionized gases left behind, and slowly move and dissipate over the course of a few minutes. Pretty cool sight.

The second image is a full-frame image captured up on Guanella Pass last fall, and clearly shows the Andromeda Galaxy.

Cheers!

more info/images if interested:
http://jeffwarnerphoto.com/2013/08/12/81113-perseid-meteor-shower-over-turquoise-lake-co/
http://jeffwarnerphoto.com/2012/09/19/91812-milky-way-over-guanella-pass-aspens/
Attachments
MilkyWayAndromedaMeteorTrail-800x-2.jpg
Milky Way and Persistent Train
MilkyWayAndromedaMeteorTrail-800x-2.jpg (223.72 KiB) Viewed 259 times
003_120918-5D_11175-blog-GuanellaPass.jpg
The Andromeda Galaxy; 5D MkIII + 70-200/2.8L IS, full frame image.
003_120918-5D_11175-blog-GuanellaPass.jpg (239.11 KiB) Viewed 259 times
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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby Jim Davies » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:12 am

FFLpilot wrote:The only thing we can see with the naked eye from outside our galaxy is the Andromeda Galaxy.

There are a few others, listed here. The only one I've seen is M33, which is in the same general neighborhood as Andromeda. When I've seen it I've been somewhere completely dark and remote with clear skies, and even then only with averted vision; seeing it from a city is pretty much impossible.

Love the pictures. More, please. :mrgreen:
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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby bonehead » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:16 am

MattVocks wrote:Think of the Milky Way as a frisbee.

I like the over easy egg metaphor.
It has a thicker center and thins at it's edges.
You must imagine it spinning wildly,
trying to rip itself apart..
Maybe Carl Sagan set me up for that.
"Billions and Billions"
still rings in my mind.

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby Jim Davies » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:32 am

I had a great "Milky Way moment" back in my amateur astronomy days in the 80's. One night about 3 am or so, I was by myself out on some godforsaken dirt road in rural central Illinois looking at stuff with my telescope. I noticed that the Milky Way was near the horizon in all directions (don't remember when this happens exactly, but it does sometimes). I suddenly had this overwhelming feeling of being in the disk, and I swear I could almost feel it turning. Sleep deprivation is better than drugs sometimes. :)
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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby Rarefied » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:36 am

Stunning photos :shock: ... stunning sacrifice :cry: ... stunning tribute =D> .

R

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Re: 10/8/13: Milky Way and Aurora from Loveland Pass

Postby speth » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:40 am

bonehead wrote:
MattVocks wrote:Think of the Milky Way as a frisbee.

I like the over easy egg metaphor.
It has a thicker center and thins at it's edges.
You must imagine it spinning wildly,
trying to rip itself apart..
Maybe Carl Sagan set me up for that.
"Billions and Billions"
still rings in my mind.


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