Hubble Sees Red Giant Blow a Bubble
NASA – Camelopardalis, or U Cam for short, is a star nearing the end of its life. As stars run low on fuel, they become unstable. Every few thousand years, U Cam coughs out a nearly spherical shell of gas as a layer of helium around its core begins to fuse. The gas ejected in the star’s latest eruption is clearly visible in this picture as a faint bubble of gas surrounding the star.
U Cam is an example of a carbon star, a rare type of star with an atmosphere that contains more carbon than oxygen. Due to its low surface gravity, typically as much as half of the total mass of a carbon star may be lost by way of powerful stellar winds. Located in the constellation of Camelopardalis (The Giraffe), near the North Celestial Pole, U Cam itself is much smaller than it appears in this Hubble image. In fact, the star would easily fit within a single pixel at the center of the image. Its brightness, however, is enough to saturate the camera’s receptors, making the star look much larger than it is.
The shell of gas, which is both much larger and much fainter than its parent star, is visible in intricate detail in Hubble’s portrait. This phenomenon is often quite irregular and unstable, but the shell of gas expelled from U Cam is almost perfectly spherical. Image Credit: ESA/NASA
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Posted in Nature, Science, SPACE WATCH
Tagged Astronomy, Camelopardalis, Carbon star, Celestial pole, Hubble Space Telescope, NASA, Space, Stellar wind, Surface gravity
Associated Press/Washington Post – The Supreme Court’s decision to uphold most of President Barack Obama’s health care law will come home to roost for most taxpayers in about 2½ years, when they’ll have to start providing proof on their tax returns that they have health insurance.
The health care law “includes the largest set of tax law changes in more than 20 years,” according to the Treasury inspector general who oversees the IRS. The agency will have to hire thousands of workers to manage it, requiring significant budget increases that already are being targeted by congressional Republicans determined to dismantle the president’s signature initiative.
“Knowing the complexity of the health law, there’s no question that the IRS is going to struggle with this,” said Rep. Charles Boustany Jr., R-La., chairman of the House Ways and Means oversight subcommittee. more> http://tinyurl.com/6t5wtyr
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- After The Obamacare Decision, What Happens Next? Michael Loucks & Alexandra Gorman, Forbes
- Supreme Court becomes Roberts court in year of surprises, David G. Savage, latimes.com
- GOP seeks to rebound as Democrats hit reset on healthcare reform debate, Elise Viebeck, Hill
- How The Health Care Ruling Might Affect Civil Rights, Carrie Johnson, npr
- More Answers To Your Questions About The Health Care Law, Julie Rovner, npr
- Health Care Was Only the Supreme Court’s 2nd Most Important Decision Last Week, Miles Mogulescu, Huffingtonpost.com
- Full Steam Ahead: In Wake of Supreme Court Decision, HHS Issues Funding Opportunities, Implementation Guidance, Timothy Jost, Health Affairs Blog
Posted in Business, Economy, Healthcare, Leadership
Tagged Douglas Shulman, Government, Health, Internal Revenue Service, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Supreme Court of the United States, Tax, United States, United States House Committee on Ways and Means
By Peter Roff – Most people don’t talk about it anymore, but the current economic crisis is rooted in the corruption of the mortgage market, particularly in instruments known as “sub-prime loans” and in the Democrats stonewalling of Republican efforts to force reform on the lending giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.
Hopefully that may change now that the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee released a new report (pdf) following the committee’s three year investigation into the activities of Countrywide Financial Corporation—which was acquired by Bank of America in 2008. It’s a frightening account, documenting the company’s use of what the committee called “discounted mortgages to influential Washington policy figures” to win friends and influence people. more> http://tinyurl.com/bmh7zxm
By Tim Newcomb – The evolution of the web is a beautiful thing, especially when Vizzuality and Hyperakt combine all the latest in web design into an interactive graphic that gives viewers a colorful array of web history.
Debuted at Google I/O, the visualization uses color bands to represent the interaction between web technologies and browsers, highlighting web apps and the growth of technology. more> http://tinyurl.com/c4b4k29
Posted in Education, History, Net, Technology
Tagged Google, Hyperakt, Internet, Net evolution, Vizzuality, Web application, Web browser, Web design, Web developer