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Planck telescope reveals ancient cosmic light - Comments

TheRationalizer's Avatar Comment 1 by TheRationalizer

There is one piece of prominent information in this image you are all missing!

Read this

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 14:07:37 UTC | #486683

DavidSJA's Avatar Comment 2 by DavidSJA

Fail.

That's not the universe, it's the Milky Way Galaxy.

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 14:28:43 UTC | #486688

Lapithes's Avatar Comment 3 by Lapithes

The universe is that big thing behind the Milky Way.

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 14:40:40 UTC | #486692

Steven Mading's Avatar Comment 4 by Steven Mading

Is this supposed to be the view from earth? If so, why the ellipse shape instead of two circles for two hemispherical views or something like that? If it's not supposed to be from earth then why isn't the solar system marked on it for a reference point?

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 18:20:03 UTC | #486742

Callinectes's Avatar Comment 5 by Callinectes

@Steven Mading

Any means of representing the surface of the Earth (and we've all seen maps like this) can also represent the sky. This image is of the sky, centred on galactic centre.

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 18:47:53 UTC | #486751

Dr. Strangegod's Avatar Comment 6 by Dr. Strangegod

Yeesh, FAIL and FAIL!

David, it's the magenta and yellow area.

Steven, the Planck orbits the Earth on the dark side about a million kilometers away. (And what sort of camera do you imagine might make an image like this that would include our own solar system as a marked point? How would it communicate that information back to Earth?)

Both of these facts were in the text of the article for those who read.

Updated: Tue, 06 Jul 2010 18:55:35 UTC | #486752

SomersetJohn's Avatar Comment 7 by SomersetJohn

Comment 4 by Steven Mading :

Is this supposed to be the view from earth? If so, why the ellipse shape instead of two circles for two hemispherical views or something like that? If it's not supposed to be from earth then why isn't the solar system marked on it for a reference point?

If that's the universe then the Solar System must be totally insignificant, in the same way an atom of hydrogen would be insignificant in a glass of water.

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 18:53:33 UTC | #486754

cheesedoff17's Avatar Comment 8 by cheesedoff17

This image then, represents first, our galaxy in blue, then the foreground of the universe. Planck will have to journey further than it's present 1.5million kl to arrive at the earliest point in time. Big Bang time.

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 19:28:38 UTC | #486770

Long Johns Silver's Avatar Comment 9 by Long Johns Silver

European space science is coming into its own. Good. There's no reason why the United States should continue doing the world's space scientific heavy lifting.

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 21:09:10 UTC | #486794

DigitalDaveM's Avatar Comment 10 by DigitalDaveM

One of the slightly disappointing things (for me) about this site, is the comparative lack of enthusiasm for scientic discoveries. Considering the supposed audience and objectives of the site, I would expect somewhat more enthusiasm for science.

This image is showing the very first light ever in the whole universe! Ok, so we've already had Cobe and WMAP but even so, doesn't it thrill the blood just any tiny bit? Maybe just a bit more than the 150,000 posts slagging off god and the twits who believe?

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 21:10:36 UTC | #486795

Dr. Strangegod's Avatar Comment 11 by Dr. Strangegod

DigitalDaveM - Don't make the mistake of assuming that the lack of large numbers of comments or lengthy comments necessarily indicates any lack of enthusiasm. For me, there's nothing that makes my heart swell more than stuff like this. I ritually go to APOD every morning to infuse my mind with beauty and wonder, the only antidote I've found to the human stupidity and depravity I'm forced to witness constantly. The thing is, there's just nothing to argue about this really. We all agree it's cool. What is there to say beyond that? Also, comment threads on the internet are designed for and feed off of "slagging." That's the nature of the net. It would be nice if that were otherwise, but we as humans tend to respond to things we disagree with more than those we agree with, and are far more likely to exchange barbs and insults about things we don't agree about than share compliments about things we do. To lay that reality at the feet of any particular internet community, especially with the implication that they should be "better" than that, is folly.

Updated: Tue, 06 Jul 2010 21:45:39 UTC | #486803

Corylus's Avatar Comment 12 by Corylus

Comment 11 by Lucas :

I ritually go to APOD every morning to infuse my mind with beauty and wonder, the only antidote I've found to the human stupidity and depravity I'm forced to witness constantly.

Yes I do that, just after this I visit smallworld to mess with my "mind scale" by viewing the micro after the marco (insignificance truly is a point of view!) and do the daily quiz.

After which... I might look at some lolcats... and some blogs... and some other news sites... and have some coffee ... and a scratch....

after that

I might (just might) go do some work :)

Tue, 06 Jul 2010 21:55:19 UTC | #486811

Enlightenme..'s Avatar Comment 13 by Enlightenme..

Comment 2 by DavidSJA Fail.

That's not the universe, it's the Milky Way Galaxy.

06 July 2010 02:28 PM | #486688 Comment 3 by uuaschbaer The universe is that big thing behind the Milky Way.

Rofl Best exchange so far this year!

Wed, 07 Jul 2010 04:00:25 UTC | #486886

cheesedoff17's Avatar Comment 14 by cheesedoff17

@DigitalDaveM

Lucas is right, you shouldn't assume that there is a lack of enthusiasm. I think science is awesome, particularly all these fabulous photos from Hubble - one of which i use as my computer wallpaper - they are so beautiful and amazing. However,it's difficult for a nincompoop like myself to understand. It upset me that I forgot the question mark at the end of my post.

Wed, 07 Jul 2010 09:17:58 UTC | #486929

phodopus's Avatar Comment 15 by phodopus

Comment 4 by Steven Mading :

Is this supposed to be the view from earth? If so, why the ellipse shape instead of two circles for two hemispherical views or something like that? If it's not supposed to be from earth then why isn't the solar system marked on it for a reference point?

Ahm, of course it's the view from earth, it's an actual picture as recorded! As far as I know, we don't have telescopes positioned at the opposite end of the galaxy yet. Also, it would be annoying to wait 100000 years for the signal. :-D

It's a full sky exposure projected onto an ellipse. On the boundaries of the ellipse you are actually looking away from the center of the galaxy. The way the picture is aligned (with the galaxy as a stripe in the middle) is completely arbitrary.

Comment 10 by DigitalDaveM :

One of the slightly disappointing things (for me) about this site, is the comparative lack of enthusiasm for scientic discoveries. Considering the supposed audience and objectives of the site, I would expect somewhat more enthusiasm for science.

I am extremely thrilled by this experiment, but I also very annoyed that it takes them until 2012 to give us the new improved power spectrum. I don't want to wait! Come on Planck collaboration!

One of the reasons why this takes so long, is that in order to address the cosmological questions, you have to carefully subtract the milky way from the background in order to get full view onto the cosmic microwave background in all directions. That is terribly difficult because you need to model the emission and absorption of the galaxy and its impact on the microwave background.

To put in perspective what kind of amazing questions this experiment can answer, while it is just a few steps up from WMAP, one of the really exciting ideas for me is that the improved resolution can give us evidence whether the universe is finite and closes up into itself. We don't know that yet, and those data, once they are properly analyzed, could give us a positive answer.

Beyond that, primordial gravitational waves, refined information about dark matter and dark energy, all have the potential to revolutionize the field! But another two years, that's just too much ;)

Updated: Wed, 07 Jul 2010 10:44:10 UTC | #486949

cheesedoff17's Avatar Comment 16 by cheesedoff17

When one looks out at the innumerable galaxies it's easy to imagine that the cosmos must be infinite. The notion of it curling up on itself,is,for me, more difficult to understand.

Wed, 07 Jul 2010 19:09:50 UTC | #487107

Steven Mading's Avatar Comment 17 by Steven Mading

Comment 7 by SomersetJohn :

Comment 4 by Steven Mading :

Is this supposed to be the view from earth? If so, why the ellipse shape instead of two circles for two hemispherical views or something like that? If it's not supposed to be from earth then why isn't the solar system marked on it for a reference point?

If that's the universe then the Solar System must be totally insignificant, in the same way an atom of hydrogen would be insignificant in a glass of water.

So are many of the other things labelled there. It's not a matter of size, but of how strange it is not to provide that as a reference "you are here" point. That's why I was asking if it was a view from earth.

Wed, 07 Jul 2010 22:03:02 UTC | #487151

Steven Mading's Avatar Comment 18 by Steven Mading

Comment 15 by phodopus :

Comment 4 by Steven Mading :

Is this supposed to be the view from earth? If so, why the ellipse shape instead of two circles for two hemispherical views or something like that? If it's not supposed to be from earth then why isn't the solar system marked on it for a reference point?

Ahm, of course it's the view from earth, it's an actual picture as recorded! As far as I know, we don't have telescopes positioned at the opposite end of the galaxy yet. Also, it would be annoying to wait 100000 years for the signal. :-D

Sure, because there's never been any such thing as the ability to generate an image from somewhere a camera hasn't been. Nobody's ever generated space images from data by calculating things and drawing them out on computer.

Granted, it turns out it is a view calculated from a vantage point of earth, but not for the reason you cite.

Wed, 07 Jul 2010 22:13:28 UTC | #487152

phodopus's Avatar Comment 19 by phodopus

@ Steve Mading

You're of course right that such things have been done, so my snark was maybe unwarranted - but in this case it's not really a view calculated from a vantage point of earth, it's a straight depiction of the cosmic microwave background in various frequency bands as measured by the Planck satellite, with a minimal amount of assumptions in the conversion - like turning 360 degrees taking pictures with a camera and then gluing them together in a panorama shot. If it were a CGI image generated to reconstruct the CMB as seen from some vantage point using a sophisticated algorithm manipulating the input data, the outcome would be worthless as a precision measurement (which is what its primary purpose is), or at least very hard to interpret, because so many algorithm dependent assumptions would be in the result. You can say though that once the galaxy is subtracted, the CMB would look the same anyhow no matter where you are in the vicinity of our galaxy, so that is kind of tantamount to moving to a vantage point "beyond" the Milky way in the direction you are looking.

Thu, 08 Jul 2010 11:10:01 UTC | #487262

lackofgravitas's Avatar Comment 20 by lackofgravitas

Damn, it's just so beautiful. I go from the micro to the macro too. It's the bits in-between that cause me problems.

Thanks for the SmallWorld reminder, I'd forgotten about that. I get my image of the day from Hubble (via StarWalk on iPhone) but I'll add APOD to the bookmarks.

There's so much beauty in our little universe, I can nearly (I say nearly) understand why some folks believe it was designed for us. Then I remember that my box-set of Cosmos is on its way :)

LoG

Thu, 08 Jul 2010 23:07:30 UTC | #487375