Wikipedia article of the day for October 31, 2020

Wikipedia article of the day is Bill Kibby. Check it out: Summary: Bill Kibby (15 April 1903 – 31 October 1942) was a British-born Australian recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that could be awarded to a member of the Australian armed forces during World War II. In 1940, Kibby enlisted in the all-volunteer Second Australian Imperial Force and joined the 2/48th Infantry Battalion. He was injured before the Siege of Tobruk, but was with the battalion during the First Battle of El Alamein in July 1942. In October, the battalion was committed to the Second Battle of El Alamein. Between 23 and 31 October, Kibby went forward alone and silenced an enemy machine gun post, mended a telephone line under heavy fire, and pressed forward under withering machine gun fire to help his company capture its objective. After this final action ultimately cost him his life, the Victoria Cross was awarded for his inspirational leadership.

Fear and Dread: The Moons of Mars

On Halloween fear and dread will stalk your night skies, also known as Phobos and Deimos the moons of Mars. The 2020 opposition of Mars was on October 13, so the Red Planet will still rise shortly after sunset. Near Halloween’s Full Moon on the sky, its strange yellowish glow will outshine other stars throughout the night. But the two tiny Martian moons are very faint and in close orbits, making them hard to spot, even with a small telescope. You can find them in this carefully annotated composite view though. The overexposed planet’s glare is reduced and orbital paths for inner moon Phobos and outer moon Deimos are overlayed on digitally combined images captured on October 6. The diminutive moons of Mars were discovered in August of 1877 by astronomer Asaph Hall at the US Naval Observatory using the Great Equatorial 26-inch Alvan Clark refractor. via WORDPRESS

The Ghoul of IC 2118

Inspired by the halloween season, this telescopic portrait captures a cosmic cloud with a scary visage. The interstellar scene lies within the dusty expanse of reflection nebula IC 2118 in the constellation Orion. IC 2118 is about 800 light-years from your neighborhood, close to bright bluish star Rigel at the foot of Orion. Often identified as the Witch Head nebula for its appearance in a wider field of view it now rises before the witching hour though. With spiky stars for eyes, the ghoulish apparition identified here seems to extend an arm toward Orion’s hot supergiant star. The source of illumination for IC 2118, Rigel is just beyond this frame at the upper left. via wordpress

NGC 6357: The Lobster Nebula

Why is the Lobster Nebula forming some of the most massive stars known? No one is yet sure. Cataloged as NGC 6357, the Lobster Nebula houses the open star cluster Pismis 24 near its center — a home to unusually bright and massive stars. The overall blue glow near the inner star forming region results from the emission of ionized hydrogen gas. The surrounding nebula, featured here, holds a complex tapestry of gas, dark dust, stars still forming, and newly born stars. The intricate patterns are caused by complex interactions between interstellar winds, radiation pressures, magnetic fields, and gravity. NGC 6357 spans about 400 light years and lies about 8,000 light years away toward the constellation of the Scorpion. via wordpress

Wikipedia article of the day for October 30, 2020

Wikipedia article of the day is European storm petrel. Check it out: Summary: The European storm petrel (Hydrobates pelagicus) is a small, square-tailed seabird with a fluttering flight. It is black except for a white rump and a white band under its wings. Most birds breed on islands off western Europe, with a separate subspecies occurring in the Mediterranean. The storm petrel lays a single white egg in a burrow. The adults share incubation and feeding the chick. This bird is oceanic outside the breeding season, wintering off the western coasts of Africa. It feeds on small fish, and can find oily edible items by smell. The chick is fed with an oily liquid regurgitated by the adults. Silent at sea, the storm petrel has a chattering call given during courtship, and the male has a purring song. The storm petrel cannot survive where rats or cats have been introduced, and it is killed by large birds such as gulls. It is classified by the IUCN as being of least concern. Folklore claiming that the bird can foretell or cause bad weather has led to its use as a symbol by some revolutionary groups.

new like on October 29, 2020 at 11:06AM

Wikipedia article of the day for October 29, 2020

Wikipedia article of the day is Portrait of Mariana of Austria. Check it out: Summary: Portrait of Mariana of Austria is a 1652 or 1653 oil-on-canvas painting by Diego Velázquez, the leading artist of the Spanish Golden Age. Its subject, Dona Mariana (known as Maria Anna), was the daughter of Emperor Ferdinand III and Maria Anna of Spain, and was nineteen years old when the painting was completed. Although vivacious and fun-loving in life, she is given an unhappy expression in Velázquez’s portrait. The painting is bathed in harmonious shades of black and red, and her face is heavily made up. Her right hand rests on the back of a chair, and she holds a lace handkerchief in her left hand. Her bodice is decorated with jewellery, including a gold necklace, bracelets and a large gold brooch. The clock placed on the scarlet drapery behind her indicates her status. Three full-length versions of the portrait survive, as well as a number of half-length variants. The version in the Museo del Prado (detail pictured) is known to be the original and is dated on the basis of a matching description of a canvas sent to Ferdinand in Vienna in December 1651.