James O’Donoghue made this straightforward animation that shows how long it takes for a ball to drop one kilometer on different planets: It might be surprising to see large planets have a pull comparable to smaller ones at the surface, for example Uranus pulls the ball down slower than at Earth! Why? Because the low average density of Uranus puts the surface far away from the majority of the mass....
yeti dynamics imagined if a giant banana were orbiting Earth from the same distance as the International Space Station: It’s so dumb, which is why it’s so good. And you’re in luck, because this video is from a few years ago, and yeti dynamics has many variants, such as: if the moon were replaced by planets and if all the planets were in between Earth and the moon. [via kottke]...
For The New York Times, Jonathan Corum illustrated the dozens of spacecraft orbiting planets and objects in the Solar System. The piece starts at the sun and then makes it way towards interstellar space. Showing active and inactive spacecraft, it’s part history lesson and part cute animation. Tags: Jonathan Corum, New York Times, orbit, space
In this video, Dominic Walliman attempts to illustrate and explain all of the known things in the universe. There’s also a poster version. Tags: Dominic Walliman, space
I always enjoy me some scale of space graphics. Neal Agarwal made an interactive browser that starts at astronaut scale and quickly zooms you out to larger objects with a fisheye view. See also: if the moon were a pixel, planets from various perspectives, a scaled physical model of the solar system, and the really slow speed of light. Tags: scale, space
Dorota M. Skowron et al. made the first 3-D map of the galaxy. Sean Greene and Andrea Roberson reporting for the Los Angeles Times: Astronomers have understood since the 1950s that the galaxy is curved, but until now, they’ve based that idea on models and indirect measurements. Over a six-year period, the researchers took more than 100 images of the galaxy from their observatory in the Chilean Andes. In particular,...
Over the past four years, Planet deployed 293 satellites in low orbit to take a snapshot of Earth every day. This animation by Nadieh Bremer shows how the snapshot gets pieced together. Most of me is like, yeah awesome. But then there’s that remaining bit of me that is a little bit nervous. Tags: Nadieh Bremer, Planet, satellite imagery, space
This animated interactive explains how a research group is using light to measure the speed of objects millions of miles away. Light that is farther away will appear to be a different color than a light that is closer. So by measuring the rate of color shifts, they can estimate velocity. Tags: Albert Einstein, light, space
National Geographic went all out on their atlas of moons. Space. Orbits. Rotating and interactive objects in the sky. Ooo. You’ll want to bookmark this one for later, so you can spend time with it. Tags: moon, National Geographic, space