Monday, February 23, 2009

NASA's Next Laboratory

NASA has a unique proposition for astronomy enthusiasts. And everyone else, too.

According to USAToday, under its "Hubble's Next Discovery — You Decide" campaign, NASA is letting people vote for one of six areas of spaces that the Hubble should focus on next. Online voting will continue until March 1st.

Depending on the vote tally, the Hubble will study a star-forming region, a spiral galaxy, a spiral galaxy on edge, or a pair of galaxies merging together. (This, unsurprisingly, is apparently the current top vote getter.)

One of the six choices

Apparently, 2009 is the International Year of Astronomy. (Who knew?) It has been four centuries since Galileo ('s head was on a block ...) first demonstrated his telescope.

And April 5th - 7th is the International Year of Astronomy's 100 Hours of Astronomy. During that time, the winning image will be released (by voting you also enter to win one of 100 copies of this image).

In May, the Hubble is due for long-delayed repairs that should make it more powerful.

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