High Skies – Voyage en Argent
3D CGI by James Blinn, NASA, 1981. Voyager flyby of Saturn.
Anyone familiar with computer graphics will be familiar with James Blinn, he was a pioneer in the early days and has the technique of Blinn Shading named after him. A technique for describing how light reflects off a surface.
High Skies – Sounds of Earth is now available in Flac format for the first time from our new shop…
We’ve just completed videos for all the tracks on the ‘High Skies – Sounds of Earth’ release and will be posting a new video every week.
A mini video of a super-massive coronal mass ejection, travelling at 900 miles per second. The Earth would be about the same size as the smallest feature you can see on the Sun’s surface, or about 1/100th the diameter of the Sun.
Images were captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, August 2012.
We’re pleased to tell you that two Gas and High Skies tours have been added to Worldwide Telescope. WWT is a virtual telescope that allows you to explore the universe through the lens of Hubble, Spitzer and others, without leaving your computer.
Universal Beauty A tour of the beautiful. Music is Gas – Microscopic. You can download the tour here (which will open WWT and play automatically once its downloaded. 5mb), or you can find it from within WWT at… Guided Tours>Galaxies>Universal Beauty.
Universal Beauty has already become the top rated galaxies tour!
V838 Light Echo
An animation of the supernova of Monocerotis V838 using time-lapse Hubble images taken over four years, to the music of High Skies – The Shape of Things to Come. Note that it’s not the dust cloud that is moving, it’s the light from the supernova expanding and lighting the dust cloud as the it travels through it – a light echo. We recommend letting it play through once to cache all the images.
You can download it here (3mb), or find it from within WWT at… Guided Tours>Supernova>V838 Light Echo.
Both are free downloads.
Feel free to rate them :-)
*requires an installed copy of Worldwide Telescope, which is a small and free download from worldwidetelescope.org.
NOTE: PC and Bootcamp version only.
There is currently a bug in the alpha code of the WWT web client that makes the five minute Universal Beauty tour turn into a seventeen minute full length feature film, and the rapid HD animation of the V838 tour becomes a little too flickery currently, but stay tuned.
NASA has just released new images taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) of the original Apollo Moon landing sites. Some even show the astronauts tracks when carrying out their surface experiments.
The Lunar Landers highlighted with a shadow from the low Sun.
Apollo 14. You can just about make out the astronauts tracks in the dust.
To mark the 40th anniversary of the first Moon landing, we have NASA TV, live from Space Shuttle Endeavor (STS-127).
Click to play. All the usual controls; full screen, mute, volume, pause…
It will be docking live with the International Space Station, and the crew will be moonwalking performing five spacewalks and complete construction of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Kibo laboratory.
At the time of the 40th anniversary they will be playing back the audio from the Apollo 11 mission in full and in real-time.
Note that it doesn’t have audio all the time. Those silent exterior shots of the Earth rotating slowly are just crying out for some ambient music. Briano Eno – Apollo?
Paragon has received authorization to begin work on NASA’s Constellation Space Suit System (CSSS). Paragon is beginning this work on the first major space suit redesign in over 40 years. Paragon is responsible for the design and manufacture of the suit’s life support and thermal control system. The first suits will support the debut flight of the new Orion spaceship, currently planned to launch in 2015. With modifications, the suit will go on to be used exploring the surface of the Moon and Mars.