AstroTalk Episode September 8, 2016

Star Trek Fifthieth Anniversary

3:07pm - 3:37pm

Today is 50th anniversary of the 1st episode of the TV show Star Trek. Fittingly, on this anniversary, NASA has imaged 2 nebulas in the Infrared that look a lot like the startrek entrprise spaceships that were captained by Captain Kirk and Captain Jean-Luc Picard. The nebulas, dubbed the Enterprise Nebula, falls within the disk of the Milky Way galaxy, displaying 2 two regions that feature a lot of star formation, but that are hidden behind a haze of dust when viewed in visible light. A young magnetar whose rotation period, 66.7 hours, has also been discovered. This is the 30th magnetar ever discovered, and its rotation period is also the slowest ever discovered for a magnetar. The OSIRIS-Rex asteroid retrieval mission is also being launched today, Thursday, September 8, 2016. This mission will be the 1st ever to fly to an asteroid, and then retrieve a sample, which it will bring back to Earth in 2023. OSIRIS-Rex will reach Bennu in 2018.