Daily science, nature and space photos

Science & Nature
Science picture of the day
Brain coral News.science360.gov.org
2 Sep 2015

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A close-up image of brain coral in the Dry Tortugas, Fla. Brain coral gets its name from the colony’s meandering, brain-like pattern of brown walls, separated by gray or green depressions known as "valleys." Each head of coral is formed by a colony of genetically identical polyps, which secrete a hard skeleton of calcium carbonate. Brain corals extend their tentacles to catch food at ...

3-D skull model News.science360.gov.org
1 Sep 2015

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A model of a skull created for use in a medical study using cutting-edge, 3-D printing technology at the National Center for Rapid Technologies (RapidTech). The model was created on a 3-D printing machine equipped with a stereolithography apparatus (SLA), one of several methods used to create 3-D-printed objects. Instead of extruding ink or some other liquid onto a surface, such as wi...

Earth science picture of the day
Noctilucent Clouds Observed Over Ørsta, Norway Epod.usra.edu
2 Sep 2015


Photographer: Geir T. B. Øye Summary Authors: Geir T. B. Øye; Jim Foster   This impressive display of electric-blue-white noctilucent clouds was observed over Ørsta, Norway, in the early hours of August 4, 2015. These polar mesospheric clouds take shape 30 to 55 mi (50 to 87 km) above the Earth’s surface as water vapor condenses around small particles that are thought to be of meteoric origin....

Bioluminescence in Florida Lagoon Epod.usra.edu
1 Sep 2015


Photographer: Derek Demeter
Summary Authors: Derek Demeter; Jim Foster

One night this summer, a group of friends and I enjoyed a paddle in the Mosquito Lagoon of the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge in Florida. Our paddling disturbed dinoflagellates in the lagoon prompting them to emit this beautiful blue light -- bioluminescence. In some cases bioluminescence is a means to attract prey ...


The Flare and the Galaxy Apod.nasa.gov

Is this person throwing a lightning bolt? Is this person throwing a lightning bolt?

Distant Neutrinos Detected Below Antarctic Ice Apod.nasa.gov

From where do these neutrinos come? From where do these neutrinos come?

Hubble picture of the day
Hubble Finds That the Nearest Quasar Is Powered by a Double Black Hole Hubblesite.org
27 Aug 2015

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Quasars are the light fantastic. These brilliant cores of active galaxies blaze with the radiance of a hundred billion stars compressed into a region of space not much larger than our solar system. Supermassive black holes, with millions or billions of times the mass of our sun, are the only imaginable powerhouse behind these tsunamis of raw energy.

Newly Discovered World Is Most Like Jupiter Hubblesite.org
13 Aug 2015

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A team of astronomers, including half a dozen from the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, Maryland, have used the Gemini Observatory's new Gemini Planet Imager to find the most solar system-like planet ever directly imaged around another star. The planet, known as 51 Eridani b, is about two times the mass of Jupiter and orbits its host star...

NASA Earth Observatory Image of the Day

Cabo Verde Hit by First Hurricane in a Century Earthobservatory.nasa.gov
2 Sep 2015

Cabo Verde Hit by First Hurricane in a Century
Unusually warm waters off western Africa provided fuel for a storm to progress from tropical depression to tropical storm to hurricane in a day.

Trio of Hurricanes Over the Pacific Ocean Earthobservatory.nasa.gov
1 Sep 2015

Trio of Hurricanes Over the Pacific Ocean
For the first time in recorded history, three Category 4 storms lined up over the central and eastern Pacific Ocean.

NASA Earth Observatory Natural Hazards

Trio of Hurricanes Over the Pacific Ocean Earthobservatory.nasa.gov
31 Aug 2015

Trio of Hurricanes Over the Pacific Ocean
For the first time in recorded history, three Category 4 storms lined up over the central and eastern Pacific Ocean.

Signs of Katrina Linger in the Marshes Earthobservatory.nasa.gov
27 Aug 2015

Signs of Katrina Linger in the Marshes
Ten years after the storm made landfall, a record of Katrina’s fury remains in the marshes surrounding Delacroix.

Animal of the day
Naked Mole Rat - More Than Meets The Eye Thewebsiteofeverything.com
22 Aug 2015
Naked mole ratThe naked mole rat (Heterocephalus glaber) is a rodent, known for its burrowing and is indigenous to East Africa. The mole rat possesses a number of characteristics which allow it to survive in underground and harsh environments.

The average naked mole rat is between 3 to 4 inches (8 to 10 centimeters) in length and weighs between 1.1 and 1.2 ounces (30 to 35 grams). They have small eyes, poor...

Northern Pudu - the World's Smallest Deer Thewebsiteofeverything.com
7 Jul 2015
The Northern Pudu (Pudu mephistophiles) is the world's smallest deer. This little inhabitant of the Andes Mountains weighs in at only 3 to 6 kg, or 7 to 13 pounds. The Northern Pudu lives and plays across Columbia, Ecuador, and Peru. They prefer to stay in the higher elevations of the Andes Mountain range. Most of them live at least 2000 meters above sea level. The climate here is a temperate r...

Botany photo of the day
Coffea arabica BotanicalGarden.ubc.ca
1 Sep 2015
Coffea arabica

I think about plants a lot. I notice them as I walk outside and of course I spent half of my week during the summer photographing and writing about plants for Botany Photo of the Day. Despite this, there is only one species that I think about each and every day: Coffea arabica. I have long appreciated the beauty of roasted coffee beans, but did not realize that the fruit are so attractive. Than...

Monstera deliciosa BotanicalGarden.ubc.ca
31 Aug 2015
Monstera deliciosa Monstera deliciosa

Some botanical names make me wonder about the botanists who dictated them, and this is one of those examples. Yes, Monstera deliciosa has monstrous leaves. And yes, its fruit, tasting of a mix of pineapple and banana, are indeed delicious. I like to think, however, that Frederik Michael Liebmann, the botanist who named this species, had a bit of a sense of humour. More likely Liebmann, a Danis...

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