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A s t r o n o m y / A s t r o l o g y  Q u e s t i o n s
p a g e  3

Aurorae glow when charged atom particles trapped in Earth's magnetosphere cascade into the upper atmosphere (ionosphere).more than 50 miles.(80 km).up, producing photons as the particles.interact with atmospheric gases. When coronal mass ejections from the Sun buffet our magnetosphere in a turbulent way, a veritable storm of protons and electrons showers down.

Midnight is the best time to see their spectacular action. The light energy in their displays depends upon the nature of the molecules involved. Nitrogen gases in the atmosphere create blueish hues. Oxygen creates greenish hues. An equal amount of both creates reddish hues. Southern aurora can be seen in the southern hemisphere, New Zealand, etc. Northern aurora can be seen throughout the northern hemisphere.

See also 'energy from space'.

Forecast of activity:.gi.alaska.edu/AuroraForecast

You can change how much time you have left here.

Select a satellite to view the Earth from: fourmilab.ch/earthview/satellite.html

View of Earth's lights at night. Can you spot your city or area?

X-ray.photographs of the sky.(xrtpub.harvard.edu/); of the Sun:.sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov/data/realtime-images.html

Got question as to the why of things? See the WhyFiles.(whyfiles.org). Know what the Analemma is?

A free download gift for you from John Walker.(thanks John), co-author of AutoCAD Home Planet software.(fourmilab.ch/homeplanet/).and, view the Earth from anywhere, the Sun, Moon, etc: (fourmilab.ch/earthview/vplanet.html). It's a comprehensive astronomy / space / satellite tracking package for Microsoft Windows. 

Good astronomy software for the Mac and Windows: TheSky III by bisque.com; StarryNight Deluxe by siennasoft.com; MegaStar Sky Atlas by willbell.com

Einstein's General Theory of Relativity.

-Quantum mechanics teaches us that, at the deepest level, uncertainty rules the universe. There are things we cannot predict, even in principle. HotBits.(fourmilab.ch/hotbits/).harnesses this fundamental uncertainty of nature to generate truly random bits, unlike the pseudo.random.sequences created by an algorithm on a computer. Along the way, you'll find a discussion of the hardware and software used to generate the random bytes comprehensive enough to build your own, and peek under the hood of quantum mechanics to see why the data are genuinely random, and some of the implications of all this.

-xsunclock.(fourmilab.ch/xsunclock/): shows you, as an icon or resizeable window, the portion of the Earth currently day and night.

-More from John: Astronomy and space links.(fourmilab.ch/)

-Astronomy link: planetary.org

According to Astronomy, January 2000, pages 28-30, Chandra.(NASA's X-ray Observatory).images reveal a never before seen ring of x-rays around the pulsar at the heart of the Crab Nebula. "Chandra was able to see the light year wide ring because the space telescope's angular resolution is 10 times sharper than any other x-ray observatory.

"It seems as though we are finally seeing the glowing power conduit that connects the Crab pulsar and the nebula".says Arizona State University astronomer Jeff Hester.."The ring is exactly in the place that it needs to be in order to be the thing that ties the pulsar to the larger nebula.

"The Crab Nebula has a ring surrounding its central pulsar and high speed jets shoot out from the highly energetic pulsar in opposite directions."

-Why is light is at a constant speed and what produces it? The speed is just a physical measurement of the space that occurs over time, that's why light is always at the same speed no matter how fast you may be going. The matter through which light travels is set.(how?).to keep the speed of light constant and so is gravity. This is just how the universe is set up to work as it does.

If the speed of the wave.(particles of light).were to fall, charge would be deposited faster than picked up, resulting in a net creation of positive charge. If it weren't constant, then charge conservation.(a central tenet of physics).would be breached.

James B. Kaler is based at the University of Illinois and studies and reports on a new star weekly. James wrote Beyond the Rainbow, Astronomy, September 2000. His most recent book is Cosmic Clouds. On the next page, he talks about light, from his latest book.


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