Daily Archives: December 15, 2013

Gibbous Europa

 Galileo Project, JPL, NASA; reprocessed by Ted Stryk

Although the phase of this moon might appear familiar, the moon itself might not. In fact, this gibbous phase shows part of Jupiter’s moon Europa. The robot spacecraft Galileo captured this image mosaic during its mission orbiting Jupiter from 1995 – 2003. Visible are plains of bright ice, cracks that run to the horizon, and dark patches that likely contain both ice and dirt. Raised terrain is particularly apparent near theterminator, where it casts shadows. Europa is nearly the same size as Earth’s Moon, but much smoother, showing few highlands or large impact craters. Evidence and images from the Galileo spacecraft, indicated that liquid oceans might exist below the icy surface. To test speculation that these seas hold life, ESA has started preliminary development of the Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE), a spacecraft proposed for launch around 2022 that would further explore Jupiter and in particular Europa. Recent observations by the Hubble Space Telescope have uncovered new evidence that Europa, like Saturn’s moon Enceladus, has ice venting from its surface.
APOD NASA 15-dec-2013

NGC 1491 in Perseus

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Astro-Tech AT6RC, Orion ED80T CF
Imaging cameras: Atik 314L+
Mounts: Orion Atlas EQ-G
Guiding telescopes or lenses: Orion USA Mini Guide Scope
Guiding cameras: Orion SSAG
Focal reducers: Televue .8 Reduce/flattener for TV-85
Software: Adobe Photoshop CS4, DeepSkyStacker, Nebulosity, Registar
Filters: Astrodon OIII 5nm, Orion SII
Accessories: Orion Dewzapper
Dates: Dec. 1, 2011, Oct. 9, 2013
Orion HAlpha 7nm: 21×900″ -20C bin 1×1
Astrodon OIII 5nm: 9×1200″ -20C bin 1×1
Orion SII: 9×1200″ -20C bin 1×1
Integration: 11.2 hours
Flats: ~20

@ Warren Spreng

AstroPhotography of the day by SPONLI

15 December 2013
We select the best works of amateur astrophotographers with details of equipment, shooting processing etc.