From Physics Research Archive
Greenhouse Effect - May 1, 2013
This is the famous "Keeling curve" of carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere versus time, from about 1958 to about 2007, measured in Hawaii. Notice that the rate of warming (indicated by the slope of the blue line) increases slowly but steadily over time.
Solar Flares--Solar Prominences - Apr 1, 2013
This image of a solar prominence was captured in extreme ultraviolet light on December 31, 2012. The prominence is ionized gas--charged particles, with electrons stripped from atoms, which move due to forces from magnetic fields.
image credit: Xiaodong Chen and Vigor Yang (School of Aerospace Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA); image source; larger image.
This image is a high-resolution computer simulation of the head-on collision of two tiny drops, one moving up and one moving down. The drops approach each other with a high velocity, so there is considerable energy in the collision. For more information, see this description.
You are looking at a composite: The image of the southern lights (Aurora Australis) is superimposed on a "Blue Marble" image of Earth; both images were captured by satellite. Click on NASA's IMAGE Satellite View of Aurora Australis from Space to see a video of this aurora.
Mission to the Edge of Space - Dec 1, 2012
The figure at the bottom of the photo is Felix Baumgartner, shortly after he jumped from an altitude of 39 kilometers (24 miles). There, the thin atmosphere produces very little air resistance, so he was almost in free fall (in free fall, the only force acting on an object is gravity). He accelerated rapidly, broke the sound barrier, and went on to about Mach 1.2 (20% above the speed of sound).
Physics Images: Bent-Core Liquid Crystals - Nov 1, 2012
Here is an image of a "bent-core liquid crystal"-- to learn more about these substances, visit Physics Images: Bent-Core Liquid Crystals.
image credit: Zhong You and Kaori Kuribayashi; image source: image not available online; larger image
Fold Everything - Oct 1, 2012
This photo shows a stent, a small metal cylinder inserted into a diseased artery to open it up. To be inserted, the device must be collapsed, and origami folding provides a way to do that. The stent is shown in the photo above, both folded and unfolded.
Mars Science Laboratory Mission - Sep 1, 2012
The image above shows a view from Curiosity's landing site inside Gale Crater; the elevated area in the distance is the crater wall. For more information on this image, visit Wall of Gale Crater. To learn more about this crater, visit The Strange Attraction of Gale Crater.
The Apollo Program: Apollo 15 - Aug 1, 2012
You're looking at the vicinity of NASA's Apollo 15 landing site, located almost in the center of the image, on the lava surface at the eastern edge of Mare Imbrium (click for a lunar map to find it). Naturally a smooth impact basin would be the best place for the lunar lander to put down. You can also see part of the Apennine mountain range in the image above.
Radioisotope Power Systems - Jul 1, 2012
The glowing pellet is an oxide of plutonium, the fuel for a radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG). It is photographed in the light it emits, because its radioactive decay produces considerable heat. The RTG converts this heat into electricity.
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