Universes…?

I was just reading a discussion on Instagram (a mistake) which said that if gravity was a bit stronger the universe would collapse (yes) or a bit weaker it would expand and fly apart forever (again yes). It then goes on to say, since gravity is so precise God MUST exist! I took umbridge at this I said :

Huh? There were possibly other universes that collapsed or expanded.. We are just lucky to be in this one. Its not precision its just that we are able to observe it. Its like saying I’m five foot three tall, therefore my short trousers fit!

In any case the Universe IS expanding, There is a considerable red shift and we can see Galaxies are moving apart. There is no sign that its slowing down… Has God forgotten and left the Universe on too low a gravity? I know – I’m cynical.

Earth painting

And then I paint planets too!

Acrylic on canvas, I’m interested in astronomy and this view of the Earth was taken from a photo. It shows parts of Africa, Greenland, Europe and the Americas. I think you can see the wind directions indicated by the clouds.

I’ve also painted views of the Moon, Jupiter and Mars, together with nebulae and galaxies. It may be something I do again.

A mobile…

How our vision changes. This was a mobile of the solar system I bought several years ago. Before the further exploration of the planets and based on images from the Voyager probes that happened in the 70’s and 80’s. I added the Space Shuttle model later. Now the James Webb telescope has been launched to take photos in the infra-red of the earliest ages of the universe. It will replace the Hubble Space telescope which took amazing photos of our solar system as well as galaxies and nebulae. It’s greatest image was the hubble deep feild that was a photo of a small, empty looking piece of sky, which turned out to be full of images of some of the earliest ever galaxies. I love astronomy. I might not know facts and figures, but I love space.

Universe

Today’s #bandofsketchers prompt was Universe. So I did this doodle. Crystal shapes that represent ancient ideas of the crystal spheres, moons in different phases. A solar system, a sun, a tardis, a wormhole a saturn type planet… Also galaxies colliding and other space stuff.

Black fine liner pen and black felt pens. I had fun doing this.

Binoculars

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Want to see the stars? You don’t need an expensive telescope. Maybe just a pair of binoculars (you can get monocular too). You just have to get them set up so you can see images clearly. You can use them to look at the moon, where you will be able to see more of the craters and mare (seas). These are not actually filled with water, but flattened areas amongst the craters. There is the sea of tranquility where Apollo 11 landed for instance. Other things that binoculars make visible include some galaxies and comet Neowise which is gradually fading as it moves away from the sun. It is visible above the western horizon below the star Arcturus (follow the stars of the big dipper handle down till you get to a bright star, then look about halfway between it and the horizon. It is an idea to look in a dark sky area, and allow your eyes to become adapted to the dark for about twenty minutes to allow the pupils of your eyes to open fully.

It’s been cloudy here so I haven’t seen it!

Are the stars out?

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In the sky I see stars, not many, the major constellations, ursa major, ursa minor, casseopea. Its hard to make out because the clouds are flitting by. And despite lockdown, the street lights still deaden them.

I’ve only ever felt the greatness and infinity of space when we were out in the countryside. Seeing the milky way galaxy made me feel so tiny. Like I could fall off the surface of the earth, into a whirlpool of stars. Seeing that band of stardust overhead can be overwhelming.

Dark skies, where the town and city light does not reflect back. Where you can lie down on the ground and see shooting stars flying overhead. I may have seen satellites or the ISS but I wouldn’t be sure. We have seen comets…

The sky is there to observe. Look if you can, and learn.

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Observe

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Photo of Jodrell Bank Observatory I took in 2011.

See that star up there?

That’s a planet Galileo saw.

See the dots across its face?

Moons that circle it apace.

Moving further into space,

Stars and gas, nebulae like lace.

Gazing further, higher, far

Supernovae, neutron star.

Galaxies fly apart so fast

Hubbles constant, Doppler’s haste.

Black holes tug at other worlds,

Gravity wells where stars are hurled.

Big bang  was expanding

Dark matter we’re  not understanding..

Cosmic microwave background energy.

Look out from our earth observatory.