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First Full-Sky Image From Planck Mission

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the pretty-pictures dept.

Space 56

krou writes "Six months of work has produced a remarkable full-sky map from Planck. 'It shows what is visible beyond the Earth to instruments that are sensitive to light at very long wavelengths — much longer than what we can sense with our eyes. Researchers say it is a remarkable dataset that will help them understand better how the Universe came to look the way it does now. ... Of particular note are the huge streamers of cold dust that reach thousands of light-years above and below the galactic plane. "What you see is the structure of our galaxy in gas and dust, which tells us an awful lot about what is going on in the neighborhood of the Sun; and it tells us a lot about the way galaxies form when we compare this to other galaxies," observed Professor Andrew Jaffe, a Planck team member from Imperial College London, UK.' The ESA has more details on their website, with a higher-res JPG available."

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know your audience (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 4 years ago | (#32798876)

at very long wavelengths — much longer than what we can sense with our eyes.

Thanks for that.

Re:know your audience (2)

BisexualPuppy (914772) | more than 4 years ago | (#32798886)

"The bright horizontal line running the full length of the image is the galaxy's main disc - the plane in which the Sun and the Earth also reside."
Sun ? What's this ?

Re:know your audience (2, Funny)

thrawn_aj (1073100) | more than 4 years ago | (#32803014)

Sun ? What's this ?

"A big fiery ball in the center of our solar system, but that's not important right now ... "

\\not obscure on /.

Re:know your audience (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32798906)

at very long wavelengths -- much longer than what we can sense with our eyes

"Is noh Tiny, vely biiiiiig wavelength. You need eye-upglade..."

Re:know your audience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799066)

"Is noh Tiny, very biiiiiig waverength. You need eye-upgrade..."

They have trouble with l's, not r's.

Re:know your audience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799328)

They have troubre with r's, not r's.

Re:know your audience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799398)

It was a reference to Braderunner, you insensitive crod!

Re:know your audience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799502)

Sorrrry |-(. I buy your debt and your middre crass and we even, OK?

Re:know your audience (1)

slider2800 (1058930) | more than 4 years ago | (#32810408)

Lófasz! Nehogy már! Te vagy a Blade... Blade Runner!

Re:know your audience (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 4 years ago | (#32802472)

Chinese have trouble with Rs (no R sound in Chinese), Japanese have trouble with Ls (no L sound in Japanese).

Re:know your audience (1)

hidave (1082663) | more than 4 years ago | (#32809032)

Wrong. There was a guy in our office a few years ago from Kowloon, China. He pronounced the name of his home as Cow-Roon. Kowloon is an urban area of Hong Kong. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kowloon [wikipedia.org]

Good News! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32798882)

This is the smallest possible full sky map!

First Full-Frontal Centerfold Image of Cosmos (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32798942)

Exclusively in this months AstronomerBoy Magazine. Get your issue too.

Chicken (1)

cgpirre (1838252) | more than 4 years ago | (#32798960)

On first sight I thought it was an egg made of lapis lazuli.

Faster than light expansion.... (2, Insightful)

mrops (927562) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799378)

According to the article, one of the goals of this mission is to look for signs of "Faster than light expansion" that occurred shortly after creation of the universe.

This really excites me, it implies, that there existed conditions in our very own universe where at some point we had faster than light travel.

More thank likely not in our lifetime, however if it happened once, its bound to be discovered "how" and potentially exploited to achieve FTL.

Just my 0.02$

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (2, Informative)

Strange Ranger (454494) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799466)

"This really excites me, it implies, that there existed conditions in our very own universe where at some point we had faster than light travel. ...if it happened once, its bound to be discovered "how" and potentially exploited to achieve FTL."

If I understand it at all correctly (maybe not?), nothing ever traveled faster than the speed of light.

It's just that the speed of light was much faster shortly after the big bang.
Since then, the nature of the universe has changed, and the speed of light with it.
I don't think there are any FTL tricks to be found there. Someone can hopefully correct me if I'm wrong.

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799766)

No, I'm quite sure that the hyperinflation theory for the Big Bang states that the expansion of the universe actually exceeded the speed of light. This means then that there are places in the Universe that we will never be able to observe, since the light from these places will be unable to ever reach us.

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32802356)

the expansion of space gives the illusion of faster than light expansion. Light was moving at 186,242 mps while space was creating a psudo cellular structure moving matter/energy farther apart.

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (4, Interesting)

chichilalescu (1647065) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799818)

I saw a presentation a few months ago by someone who was involved in this research.
basically, they see fluctuations in this picture, and these fluctuations are in fact quantum fluctuations (or traces of) that have been blown up by the sheer speed of expansion at that particular time. this is one interesting thing they can see.
on the basis of various correlations they can also impose limits on string theories. the various models have some parameters, and these measurements put bounds on those parameters.

any FTL traveling was actually relative motion between pieces that were far away from each other; since quantum fluctuations can be seen, it's obvious something like this happened. You are right in assuming this can't probably be used for tricks.
but, since this research will lead to a better model of the universe, (think of it as the mother of all experiments, because they are actually measuring the big bang), it is more than likely that any possible FTL tricks we'll ever find will be related in some way to these studies.

for anyone spotting mistakes: please feel free to reveal them. I aim to understand, so I need to be told when I'm being an idiot.

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (4, Informative)

radtea (464814) | more than 4 years ago | (#32801126)

for anyone spotting mistakes: please feel free to reveal them.

There's nothing really to correct, just an additional comment on why this sort of study is interesting: we don't know what drove inflation, nor even exactly when it occured, nor, in point of fact, if it did occur.

Inflation is by far the most natural mechanism we know of that produces a universe as flat as our own. So on that basis we'd really like for there to have been one. An inflationary era occurs when the rate of expansion of the universe increases with time in the early going, probably due to a phase transition in the vacuum field of an elementary particle.

We know such phase transitions exist: electro-weak theory is based on the spontaneous breaking of a symmetry that is strictly observed at high energy, in much the same way that the rotational and translational symmetry of a liquid is broken by the process of crystalization as the temperature drops sufficiently for it to become a solid.

But we know that the electro-weak symmetry breaking was too late to induce the kind of early inflationary era necessary to produce a universe as perfectly balanced between open and closed as the one we see.

By studying the details of the CMB we can learn more about when and what kind of inflation occured, or in the best case we can find something that is inconsistent with inflation having occured at all, which would be hugely exciting. It would set a big chunk of modern cosmology on its ear. Alternatively, we might be able to pin down specific properties of the phase transition that drove the inflationary era, and distinguish between string-theoretic explanations and more mundane ones.

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32803352)

"This really excites me, it implies, that there existed conditions in our very own universe where at some point we had faster than light travel. ...if it happened once, its bound to be discovered "how" and potentially exploited to achieve FTL."

If I understand it at all correctly (maybe not?), nothing ever traveled faster than the speed of light.

It's just that the speed of light was much faster shortly after the big bang. Since then, the nature of the universe has changed, and the speed of light with it.

Sorry, but you're both wrong (and yes, IAAP).

The idea that the speed of light was faster at the big bang is just the creationist's way of explaining away reality. Sorry folks, the speed of light is constant and the universe really is many billions of years old.

During the inflationary period (which is what this part of our universe's history is called), space itself was expanding insanely rapidly. Points in space that used to be able to see each other (i.e., their separation [D] was less than the speed of light [c] times the age of universe [T]) were pushed apart so fast and so far that it was no longer possible for a light beam to reach between them (post-inflation, D > c*T). Space itself is what got big, but nothing ever had a real [as opposed to apparent] velocity greater than the speed of light.

Re:Faster than light expansion.... (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 4 years ago | (#32800838)

I agree that would be really cool, but if it takes all the energy in the universe pent up into a single point to create FTL travel, it's probably not going to be very practical. YMMV (in any dimension).

At the risk of hurting someone (-1, Flamebait)

cpscotti (1032676) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799036)

"understand better how the Universe came to look the way it does now"
Am I the only one sick of this kind of justifications? Since the first man pointed the first telescope upwards, we use this "to understand better how our home (universe/galaxy) is".
Or to better understand the origins of the universe...

Anyway, all this justifications are true and well intentioned but.. well.. it sounds almost lame to read them all the time.
And yet, it is better than blaming it on "the children".

Thanks ESA & Plank Team!

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799086)

Am I the only one sick of this kind of justifications?

No. I hate hearing this kind of stuff from people who should know better.

However, the silly justifications and flowery language work well with the politicians, who have to be convinced to pay for this stuff. I'm sure most of the people working on Plank would dance in a furry bear costume in front of Congress if it would get them the time and money they need to do the work and be left alone.

I've learned that scientists are a lot like serious artists and musicians. You should just give them the gear they need to work and then let them be. Don't ask for quarterly reports, don't ask for balance sheets. Just toss them whatever equipment they request and an occasional sandwich and get out the way.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1)

ZeroExistenZ (721849) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799162)

I'm sure most of the people working on Plank would dance in a furry bear costume in front of Congress if it would get them the time and money they need to do the work and be left alone.

Something like this [youtube.com] ?

I've learned that scientists are a lot like serious artists and musicians. You should just give them the gear they need to work and then let them be. Don't ask for quarterly reports, don't ask for balance sheets. Just toss them whatever equipment they request and an occasional sandwich and get out the way.

Hear hear. It is a creative process as well, people should be allowed to "stay in the zone" or "flow". It burns you out quickly if you have to constantly shift and rechannel your focus and energy to bordering tasks instead of the project at hand.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1, Insightful)

khallow (566160) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799198)

I've learned that scientists are a lot like serious artists and musicians.

No they aren't. Serious artists and musicians get paid for results. There is this myth that you just give stuff to scientists, don't supervise them, and you will get wonderful things in return. My view is that doesn't work in practice. If a scientist is willing to dance in a bear costume to get funding, then they're will do real science for funding. That's good enough for me.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (3, Interesting)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799872)

I think most scientists would rather do real science for funding but quickly find out that the funding they obtain that way is greatly limited while the "dance in a bear suit" approach gets you a lot more funding. So they grit their teeth, do the little dance and then get back to real science until their funding runs low again.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (2, Insightful)

starfishsystems (834319) | more than 4 years ago | (#32802040)

I've seen a lot of what you have described.

From a research perspective, the optimal program is the one with the smallest gap between what you say you're going to do with the funding and what you have to actually do in order to advance science in some rigorous and meaningful way.

This perspective doesn't breed cynicism, it's simply realistic. Much as everyone would like to narrow the gap, criteria for a successful grant proposal are not quite the same as for doing actual science.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#32808734)

Serious artists and musicians get paid for results.

That would be news to must artists and musicians.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 4 years ago | (#32809950)

That would be news to must artists and musicians.

I did preface it with the adjective "serious". Having said that, how many artists and musicians do you know who just get money, paid in advance, to "do" art? There is the idea of art commissions and sometimes a record label will pay an advance for a band, but these things aren't particularly common nor are they a dominant form of income. Public funding of science is remarkably different in that virtually all of the funding is paid for things that you will do rather than things that you did.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32800290)

Don't believe that just any scientist is like a serious artist or musician. At some point you might like to check to see if they are actually working on something rather than reading /., like most of us.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 4 years ago | (#32800456)

Don't ask for quarterly reports, don't ask for balance sheets. Just toss them whatever equipment they request and an occasional sandwich and get out the way.

You are putting a hell of a lot of trust in people who in the end behave just like everyone else.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#32801562)

I hear what you're saying, but as long as there's a near infinite number of possible science projects and a quite finite level of funding there has to be priorities. On the detailed level you can have science boards, but what about the overall level? How do you decide what degree of funding you'll give to science overall or Hubble versus CERN, for example? Both are ridiculously far into basic science, if you asked the scientists what measurable gains society would get the answer would be ridiculously strained or none at all. In the end it's a political decision, after all we're not paying these people because they think it's a nice hobby to do experiments, we're paying them because we want some form of results. If we just gave them free money and to go have fun, I shudder to think how much useless science we'd do.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 4 years ago | (#32802080)

...Just toss them whatever equipment they request and an occasional sandwich...

...give me a Hamm on 5, hold the Mayo

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799866)

Well, at least the people making trite arguments for scientific activity have good intentions. check out the moronic posts at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/space-telescope-captures-images-of-big-bangs-afterglow-2018909.html , where we have the usual "i dont see any evidence for foo because i dont want to look at the evidence or cannot comprehend the evidence", and "its only a theory, not a fact". can someone track them down and take away their computers, please? I think we need to issue licenses to own a computer. a car can only kill someone, while computers, in the hands of idiots, can wipe out all of civilization if they are diligent enough.

Re:At the risk of hurting someone (2, Insightful)

chichilalescu (1647065) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799932)

actually, that is the real justification. top scientists dream of things normal people call lame and stupid.
However, society found that these dreamers are useful, because they stumble onto stuff that engineers can use.

what is the justification of becoming a champion tennis/football player (since it's the season)? sports was, is and always will be a dick measuring contest (even for women). so is science, for each individual scientist. you can't change that, it's in the genes.

PLANCK_FSM_03_Black.jpg (1)

thijsh (910751) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799042)

I see the Flying Spaghetti Monster in there!

1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1)

mmcxii (1707574) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799300)

I'm just saying...

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799504)

Compared the the state of the art before this, definitely.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (0, Offtopic)

mmcxii (1707574) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799582)

Are you serious? My first hit on Google Images [astronet.ru] beat that little image.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (2, Informative)

chichilalescu (1647065) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799854)

you have no idea what you're talking about.
the Planck image is made with microwaves.
what you showed is with visible light.

there's a difference.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1)

mmcxii (1707574) | more than 4 years ago | (#32800184)

Ok, if you want to be an asshole about it, I also found better resolution images from WMAP.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (2, Informative)

chichilalescu (1647065) | more than 4 years ago | (#32801332)

this one http://www.astro.sunysb.edu/fwalter/TALKS/Australis/wmap.jpg [sunysb.edu] ?

I really don't want to be an asshole about anything. but you should clearly see that this particular 2198xsmth image from wmap is actually not that detailed. It has more pixels, but the information contained is less than the one in the Planck picture. at least, that's the way I see them, and the human eye is usually good to tell this kind of things.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1)

Trapezium Artist (919330) | more than 4 years ago | (#32822260)

Probably a bit late now for anyone to notice, but let me add a comment here as one of the people that made the Planck image.

The actual full resolution Planck data are far better than the WMAP data, but we have only been able to release a deliberately degraded version of the Planck data at this time. Indeed, we pretty decided to degrade it to WMAP resolution precisely because those data are already in the public domain.

Why? Because the scientists who spent more than a decade designing and building the Planck instruments have legal first rights to the data, and they're presently working very hard at extracting the very faint Cosmic Microwave Background signal from underneath the much brighter foreground galactic emission. This is extremely hard work and will take quite some time yet.

At the same time, we all fully understand the need to show the tax-paying public something from the mission. But we have to be extremely cautious about releasing the full-res data at this point, as some independent people will run a quick and dirty analysis on the data and publish prematurely, claiming discovery rights on something they (or their government finding agencies) never actually spent any time or money on.

Paranoia? Exactly this did happen with the much more limited piece of full-res Planck data we released last year, and we're not about to repeat the mistake.

Please be patient: we will (and are legally committed to doing so!) release the full-res data in the future, once the involved scientists have done their work. I promise that it'll be spectacular ...

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1)

chichilalescu (1647065) | more than 4 years ago | (#32828682)

It's ashame that you're forced to do this.
Anyway... as long as you're here: is there any way of obtaining the data as the texture of a sphere? I know that in practice that's what it is, and I think watching it from inside a sphere would make much more sense. and it would be kind of cool.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1, Offtopic)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799922)

NASA regularly releases images whose size dwarfs 1400 x 900. For example, the full size on "A Matter Of Perspective" ( http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/image_feature_1695.html [nasa.gov] ) is 4,888 x 2,000.

Re:1400 x 900 is now considered hi-res? (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 4 years ago | (#32800362)

That's an image from WISE. The WISE telescope images down to wavelengths of 22 microns. Planck's HIGH FREQUENCY detector is sensitive to wavelengths in the range of 300 microns and the low frequency instruments go down to 1 cm. There's a wee bit of a difference there.

Frist Psot (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32799354)

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All under 1K? (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 4 years ago | (#32799360)

Are my calculations correct, and is all of the detection band of it on temeperatures under 1K?

Dark Matter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32800462)

Did they see any of that dark matter they're always going on about ;-) , or are they ready to admit it was all just a kludge anyway ?

Re:Dark Matter (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 4 years ago | (#32801156)

At first, I wouldn't expect them to. It is dark matter afterall. But they did detect something interesting that I don't know enough to judge.

the excitement is overwhelming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32804828)

Less than 50 posts after 12 hours.
What of all the star nerds?

Axis units? (1)

captainpanic (1173915) | more than 4 years ago | (#32808012)

Am I the only one who wants to see some units?

I know that we can see the milky way, and that the bright band in the middle is that same milky way... but the night's sky is different in winter and summer, and it's different on both hemispheres.

In other words: the galaxy is all around us, and I want to know what part is where.

A good graph has units and numbers, you insensitive clods.

Re:Axis units? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32808668)

Look at the bbc article. There is a check box on top of the image that shows where some things you may know are on the maps.

Also : http://www.esa.int/esaSC/SEMF2FRZ5BG_index_1.html

Re:Axis units? (2, Informative)

tomzyk (158497) | more than 4 years ago | (#32810172)

A good graph has units and numbers, you insensitive clods

Uhhh I don't There's no "graph" here. It's a 2-dimensional picture of a 3-dimensional universe. Closer objects will appear bigger than further away objects. You can't exactly draw a "1 cm = 1,000 light years" bar on this image.

Hell is a perspective? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32834810)

I took a look at the main page of the project mentioned- cosmoscope- and I was blown away.

If you switch to viewing under Hydrogen alpha, or Far-IR, it looks exactly like the Universe is
on FIRE. No, really- look. Like lava, boiling flames. I realized, could we really be in Hell and not know it?

I know this will be modded flamebait (pun?) but seriously- if we had the eyes of animals, we would look
up at the sky and see what looks like to humans as flames. Make of this what you will.

In any case, I think I just found my new backgrounds for Satanic Linux (and yes, that's a real distro).

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