Whats in a Milky Way

If you really want to recognize how small we are in this universe, you may want to check out Supernova 2006X.

I had a long drive today that gave me ample opportunity to use my CD player and the radio.

During one of my 'push the seek' button on the radio moments I came across a discussion on the "Cosmically Terrifying Read of the Day."

The topic was a Supernova that was detected on February 18, 2006 by Swift, a satellite launched to look for gamma-ray bursts. This particular one was coded (named?) GRB060218. The experts say the detonation began with a 33 minute gamma-ray burst. That didn't mean much to me until the speaker explained that all previous gamma-ray bursts from space have lasted only a few seconds. (I giggled at first because it sounded like some kind of male bonding ritual.....well, anyway.... back to the cosmos...)

After being identified by the orbiter, it was observed by amateurs all over the world.

"This explosion released so much energy that it happened 470 million years ago yet the light could travel for that protracted period, plus pass through the gas and dust of roughly a hundred galaxies along the way, and still illuminate mirrors of backyard telescopes on earth."

After arriving home (after 12 hours on the road) I had to google this information. Of all places it took me to ESPN Sports and the acclaimed sports columnist Greg Easterbrook. (Explains the earlier testosterone burst I detected. If you're interested - scroll down until you see Cosmic Thoughts - Bummer Edition.)

A team of astronomers, however, have eased my mind by calculating that we probably don't have that kind of menace hiding in the Milky Way.

And what if we do?

This report is much easier to chew and swallow.







Comments

willowtree said…
Welcome back Pamela.

Every now and then for the fun of it, I ponder on the fact that we build monuments and plan for future generations with a sense of permanency that doesn't really belong on a planet with a molten core.

BTW thanks for raising the issue of pages not updating, since I made the change I haven't had to manually reload yours. Who knows how long I would have lived with it if you hadn't brought it up.
lrlwreath said…
Rush Limbaugh was talking about that yestereday, it just goes to show you how small we are in the huge vastness of space.
Swampwitch said…
Good Morning and Welcome Home. First, my speakers are still "missing." Will have to wait until computer guru can get here tomorrow to listen. I'm certainly not the one who might actually know what a problen might be with "pages uploading" but blogger had a 2 hour outage yesterday and "things" just didn't happen for a while. Probably nothing to do with pages not updating but just thought I'd mention that. Reading your post about the universe is mind boggling. So, thanks for boggling my mind, even more. Will be back to listen when I can hear. P.S. Be sure to take your camera to capture those sunrises.
Pamela said…
WT:
Thanks for fixing my page not updating.
I haven't had a problem since you sent the link! (I'm overwhelmed by HTML, much the less whats out there in the cosmos.)

lrlwreath: welcome, small one (:
I do feel small. In fact I might post another "space warp" picture as you have given me an idea

Swampwitch: it's a reader. No speakers required.
Karmyn R said…
The Cosmos -

Before I worry too much about what is going to come slamming into the earth or whether some hostile alien race is going to come blow us out of the sky - I am going to worry about the immediate danger: Man's Foul Weapons of Mass Destruction.
M J said…
I'm officially scared. It doesn't take much. There were all those movies about the threats from outter space in the late 90's and I don't think I have slept since.
Good Guy said…
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
ian said…
Before I worry about Man's Foul Weapons of Mass Destruction, hostile aliens, or being the Eight Ball in the Corner Pocket in the cosmic game of Pool, I'm going to worry about Zombies and Giant Robots.

You've all seen the movies. You know they're coming.

Ian
Pamela said…
I have the feeling no one checked out my last link.
Masago said…
We are but specs...
Anonymous said…
I did. candy. ivy

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