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Re: Yahoo! News Story - Amateur astronomer spies gassy "cosmic ghost"

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  • mahtezcatpoc
    ... Amateur astronomer spies gassy cosmic ghost Tue Aug 5, 3:51 PM ET CHICAGO (Reuters) - A Dutch primary school teacher and amateur astronomer has
    Message 1 of 2 , Aug 6, 2008
      --- In thefixedstars@yahoogroups.com, Mark Holmes <mahtezcatpoc@...>
      wrote:
      >
      > Mark Holmes (mahtezcatpoc@...) has sent you a news article.
      > (Email address has not been verified.)
      > ------------------------------------------------------------
      > Personal message:
      >
      >
      >
      > Amateur astronomer spies gassy "cosmic ghost" - Yahoo! News
      >
      > http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080805/sc_nm/cosmic_ghost_dc


      Amateur astronomer spies gassy "cosmic ghost"

      Tue Aug 5, 3:51 PM ET

      CHICAGO (Reuters) - A Dutch primary school teacher and amateur
      astronomer has discovered what some are calling a "cosmic ghost," a
      strange, gaseous object with a hole in the middle that may represent a
      new class of astronomical object.

      The teacher, Hanny van Arkel, discovered the object while volunteering
      in the Galaxy Zoo project, which enlists the help of members of the
      public to classify galaxies online.

      "At first, we had no idea what it was. It could have been in our solar
      system, or at the edge of the universe," Yale University
      astrophysicist Kevin Schawinski, a member and co-founder of the Galaxy
      Zoo team, said in a statement.

      The find, nicknamed "Hanny's Voorwerp" (Dutch for object), soon had
      scientists training their telescopes on the object.

      "What we saw was really a mystery," Schawinski said. "The Voorwerp
      didn't contain any stars."

      Made entirely of very hot gas, the eerie green object is illuminated
      by remnant light from the nearby galaxy IC 2497.

      "We think that in the recent past the galaxy IC 2497 hosted an
      enormously bright quasar," Schawinski said.

      He said light from the past still illuminates the ghostly object, even
      though the quasar shut down some 100,000 years ago and the galaxy's
      black hole went quiet.

      "It's this light echo that has been frozen in time for us to observe,"
      said Chris Lintott, a co-organizer of Galaxy Zoo at Oxford University
      in the United Kingdom, said in a statement.

      Researchers will soon use the Hubble Space Telescope to get a closer look.

      "It's amazing to think that this object has been sitting in the
      archives for decades and that amateur volunteers can help by spotting
      things like this online," van Arkel said in a statement.

      Van Arkel is one of more than 150,000 amateur astronomers who have
      assisted in classifying more than 1 million galaxies over the past
      year as part of the Galaxy Zoo project.

      The next stage of Galaxy Zoo will ask volunteers to search for more
      unusual astronomical objects.

      Galaxy Zoo can be found at www.galaxyzoo.org .
    • mahtezcatpoc
      Hanny s Voorwerp is in Leo Minor, near 13 Leonis Minoris in (I think) the Lion Cub s rump.
      Message 2 of 2 , Aug 6, 2008
        Hanny's Voorwerp is in Leo Minor, near 13 Leonis Minoris in (I think)
        the Lion Cub's rump.

        http://www.popastro.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=62988&sid=559f2929fa97a9adcb39af0e2f3b36e2

        "Position(2000): RA 09 41 00.86, Dec 33 43 42.26"

        16 Leo 18.


        Mark A. Holmes

        >
        > --- In thefixedstars@yahoogroups.com, Mark Holmes <mahtezcatpoc@>
        > wrote:
        > >
        > > Mark Holmes (mahtezcatpoc@) has sent you a news article.
        > > (Email address has not been verified.)
        > > ------------------------------------------------------------
        > > Personal message:
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > Amateur astronomer spies gassy "cosmic ghost" - Yahoo! News
        > >
        > > http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080805/sc_nm/cosmic_ghost_dc
        >
        >
        > Amateur astronomer spies gassy "cosmic ghost"
        >
        > Tue Aug 5, 3:51 PM ET
        >
        > CHICAGO (Reuters) - A Dutch primary school teacher and amateur
        > astronomer has discovered what some are calling a "cosmic ghost," a
        > strange, gaseous object with a hole in the middle that may represent a
        > new class of astronomical object.
        >
        > The teacher, Hanny van Arkel, discovered the object while volunteering
        > in the Galaxy Zoo project, which enlists the help of members of the
        > public to classify galaxies online.
        >
        > "At first, we had no idea what it was. It could have been in our solar
        > system, or at the edge of the universe," Yale University
        > astrophysicist Kevin Schawinski, a member and co-founder of the Galaxy
        > Zoo team, said in a statement.
        >
        > The find, nicknamed "Hanny's Voorwerp" (Dutch for object), soon had
        > scientists training their telescopes on the object.
        >
        > "What we saw was really a mystery," Schawinski said. "The Voorwerp
        > didn't contain any stars."
        >
        > Made entirely of very hot gas, the eerie green object is illuminated
        > by remnant light from the nearby galaxy IC 2497.
        >
        > "We think that in the recent past the galaxy IC 2497 hosted an
        > enormously bright quasar," Schawinski said.
        >
        > He said light from the past still illuminates the ghostly object, even
        > though the quasar shut down some 100,000 years ago and the galaxy's
        > black hole went quiet.
        >
        > "It's this light echo that has been frozen in time for us to observe,"
        > said Chris Lintott, a co-organizer of Galaxy Zoo at Oxford University
        > in the United Kingdom, said in a statement.
        >
        > Researchers will soon use the Hubble Space Telescope to get a closer
        look.
        >
        > "It's amazing to think that this object has been sitting in the
        > archives for decades and that amateur volunteers can help by spotting
        > things like this online," van Arkel said in a statement.
        >
        > Van Arkel is one of more than 150,000 amateur astronomers who have
        > assisted in classifying more than 1 million galaxies over the past
        > year as part of the Galaxy Zoo project.
        >
        > The next stage of Galaxy Zoo will ask volunteers to search for more
        > unusual astronomical objects.
        >
        > Galaxy Zoo can be found at www.galaxyzoo.org .
        >
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