Music of the spheres ... and the stars
NASA's Cassini spacecraft has been snapping stunning pictures of Saturn and its moons since 2004, allowing scientists to probe the ringed planet and its spheres like never before.
Now, Chris Abbas, a designer and director at Digital Kitchen in Seattle, Wash., has grabbed hundreds of the images and compiled them into this mesmerizing video set to music by Nine Inch Nails. Rings spin, the planet floats, stars and moons whizz by.
"I truly enjoy outer space," Abbas writes on the Vimeo website where the video is posted. "It's absolutely amazing that we now have the ability to send instruments out into the void of the universe to observe all sorts of interesting things."
To learn more about Cassini, check out NASA's mission website. More stories about the spacecraft and its discoveries are at the bottom of this post. Before you scroll down, however, there's one more bit of space-geek artistry to watch today.
From April, 2003 until August, 2006, the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope watched four parts of the sky as often as possible for a special type of supernova (called Type Ia supernovae) which are created by the thermonuclear detonation of one or more white-dwarf stars. These explosions are extremely energetic, and can be seen across vast distances in space.
This video, produced by astronomy graduate student Alex Harrison Parker from Canada's University of Victoria, gives a feel for what supernova — exploding, dying stars — sound like when hooked up to a grand piano or standup bass.
More information on how it was made and what it means is available from Discovery News.