The Arcadian Ideal...

Oh, if we could only live in an arcadian world...

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Élisée Reclus (French, 1830-1905) and Louis Bonnier (French, 1856-1946)

Shrine to the Earth for the Exposition Universelle in Paris, 1900

This enormous, scientifically accurate globe would have stood 418 feet tall. A spiraling ramp would have led viewers along a journey from Antarctica to the North Pole. Proposed in 1895, it was never built. Patrick Geddes called it “no mere scientific model in its institute, but the image, the shrine, and temple of the Earth-mother.” 

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A Europe of equals
This fantasy map by Alasdair Gunn redivides the area contained in the European Union into states that would have roughly equal populations. For the sake of further fun, he’s tried to draw the boundaries to correspond to some real historical divisions in a way that gives us a look at some states that might have been. The southern and western shores of Sweden, for example, really were Danish possessions for a considerable period of time. Mainly, though, the map works as a clever illustration of population densities. Lowland, Köln, and Rhineland are all relatively tiny in terms of area but not population, underscoring the very thick settlement pattern in this portion of the continent. As one goes further east, things thin out considerably, and the make-believe countries get larger.

A Europe of equals

This fantasy map by Alasdair Gunn redivides the area contained in the European Union into states that would have roughly equal populations. For the sake of further fun, he’s tried to draw the boundaries to correspond to some real historical divisions in a way that gives us a look at some states that might have been. The southern and western shores of Sweden, for example, really were Danish possessions for a considerable period of time. Mainly, though, the map works as a clever illustration of population densities. Lowland, Köln, and Rhineland are all relatively tiny in terms of area but not population, underscoring the very thick settlement pattern in this portion of the continent. As one goes further east, things thin out considerably, and the make-believe countries get larger.

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todiwan:

I gathered up a few of images of the Earth and the Moon, taken by various spacecraft through recent and not so recent history. From top to bottom, and in chronological order, they are:

1. An image of Earth and the Moon taken by NASA’s Voyager 1 when it was 11.66 million kilometers from Earth, on 18th of September 1977. This is the first image of its kind ever taken by a spacecraft.

2. This image was taken by the Galileo spacecraft as it flew by, eight days after its encounter with the Earth-Moon system on 16th of December 1992. Image was taken from a distance of about 6.2 million kilometers.

3. This image was taken by the NEAR spacecraft as it flew by the Earth-Moon system on 23rd of January 1998, 19 hours after the spacecraft swung by Earth on its way to the asteroid 433 Eros. Taken from 400000km away, approximately the distance between the Earth and the Moon.

4. An image of Earth and the Moon (3rd of October 2007) taken from Martian orbit by “The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment” (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

Keep in mind that the distance between the Earth and the Moon is much larger than it appears on those pictures. The reason the Moon appears so large is due to perspective.

(via thedemon-hauntedworld)

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thedemon-hauntedworld:

Arp 81: 100 Million Years Later
Image Credit: Hubble Legacy Archive, ESA, NASA; Processing - Martin Pugh

From planet Earth, we see this strongly distorted pair of galaxies, cataloged as Arp 81, as they were only about 100 million years after their close encounter. The havoc wreaked by their mutual gravitational interaction during the encounter is detailed in this color composite showing twisted streams of gas and dust, a chaos of massive star formation, and a tidal tail stretching for 200 thousand light-years or so as it sweeps behind the cosmic wreckage. Also known as NGC 6622 (top) and NGC 6621, the galaxies are roughly equal in size but are destined to merge into one large galaxy in the distant future, making repeated approaches until they finally coalesce. Located in the constellation Draco, the galaxies are 280 million light-years away. Even more distant background galaxies can be spotted in the sharp, reprocessed, image from Hubble Legacy Archive data.

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thedemon-hauntedworld:

The Tidal Tale of NGC 3628
A mere 30 million light-years away, large spiral galaxy NGC 3628 (center left) shares its neighborhood in the local Universe with two other large spirals, in a magnificent grouping otherwise known as the Leo Triplet. In fact, fellow trio member M65 is near the center right edge of this deep cosmic group portrait, with M66 just above it and to the left. But, perhaps most intriguing is the spectacular tail stretching down for about 300,000 light-years from NGC 3628’s warped, edge-on disk. Known as a tidal tail, the structure has been drawn out of the galaxy by gravitational tides during brief but violent past interactions with its large neighbors. Not often imaged so distinctly, the tidal tail is composed of young bluish star clusters and star-forming regions.

Image Credit & Copyright: Thomas V. Davis (tvdavisastropix.com)

thedemon-hauntedworld:

The Tidal Tale of NGC 3628
A mere 30 million light-years away, large spiral galaxy NGC 3628 (center left) shares its neighborhood in the local Universe with two other large spirals, in a magnificent grouping otherwise known as the Leo Triplet. In fact, fellow trio member M65 is near the center right edge of this deep cosmic group portrait, with M66 just above it and to the left. But, perhaps most intriguing is the spectacular tail stretching down for about 300,000 light-years from NGC 3628’s warped, edge-on disk. Known as a tidal tail, the structure has been drawn out of the galaxy by gravitational tides during brief but violent past interactions with its large neighbors. Not often imaged so distinctly, the tidal tail is composed of young bluish star clusters and star-forming regions.

Image Credit & Copyright: Thomas V. Davis (tvdavisastropix.com)