Looking to expand my “following” list beyond bikini tramps and people who I may or may not be professionally jealous of, I recently started following NASA on Instagram. It’s a follow that’s provided me with a wonderful supply of cosmological magic. Every day these space voyageurs capture some exotic new slice of our universe and place it right in our hands like technological Zeuses doling out mind-thunderbolts.
Just the other day I learned about NGC 3610, an elliptical galaxy roughly four billion years old.
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Young Elliptical Galaxy: At the center of this amazing image is an elliptical galaxy. Surrounding the galaxy and visible in the background are a wealth of other galaxies of all shapes. The reason for the peculiar shape of this galaxy stems from its formation history. When galaxies form, they usually resemble our galaxy, the Milky Way, with flat disks and spiral arms where star formation rates are high and which are therefore very bright. An elliptical galaxy is a much more disordered object which results from the merging of two or more disk galaxies. During these violent mergers most of the internal structure of the original galaxies is destroyed. The fact that NGC 3610 still shows some structure in the form of a bright disk implies that it formed only a short time ago. The galaxy's age has been put at around four billion years and it is an important object for studying the early stages of evolution in elliptical galaxies. Image credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, Acknowledgement: Judy Schmidt #nasa #hubble #space #galaxy #astronomy #universe #nasabeyond #science
My mind is still trying to process the photo of the Veil Nebula published a few weeks back. They call it “delicate, draped filamentary structures,” but I’m convinced this is really what Geddy Lee sees when he closes his eyes.
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This is the expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago. Called the Veil Nebula, the debris is one of the best-known supernova remnants, deriving its name from its delicate, draped filamentary structures. The entire nebula is 110 light-years across, covering six full moons on the sky as seen from Earth, and resides about 2,100 light-years away in the constellation Cygnus, the Swan. This view is a mosaic of six pictures from our Hubble Space Telescope of a small area roughly two light-years across, covering only a tiny fraction of the nebula's vast structure. This close-up look unveils wisps of gas, which are all that remain of what was once a star 20 times more massive than our sun. The fast-moving blast wave from the ancient explosion is plowing into a wall of cool, denser interstellar gas, emitting light. The nebula lies along the edge of a large bubble of low-density gas that was blown into space by the dying star prior to its self-detonation. Image Credit: NASA/ESA/Hubble Heritage Team #nasa #hubble #hst #hubble25 #space #astronomy #nebular #star #nasabeyond #science
The point I’m trying to make in all this is that, yes, sometimes the stars are within our reach. They’re out there. Shining. Sparkling. All you have to do is be strong enough to stretch your arm out and grab them.
Rarely has such bravery, such indomitable spirit been committed to the recorded form as when Tim sings the hits on Tim Sings! The Hits! Weaving his way through 44 of the greatest songs of all-time from Aerosmith’s space exploration epic “I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing” to Wilson Phillips’ iconic “Hold On” Tim always pushes forward, resolutely overcoming his condition to capture the very soul of each song.
In many ways Tim Sings! The Hits! is just like those NASA probes and telescopes that are continually monitoring our skies. Can they explain all the mysteries of the universe? No. Can they unravel the science behind dianetics? Not likely. Do they need someone to help cut up their dinner so they don’t accidentally choke on their ham? Sure, but needing a little help won’t stop Tim from from pursuing his dream: To bring us back little pieces of stardust each and every day in the form of song.
That is the true journey of Tim Sings! The Hits!