Tuesday, September 04, 2012

WISE finds millions of black holes, thousands of hot DOGs

As lots of media outlets such as HJ News point out, the WISE satellite assembled in Logan, Utah (Mitt Romney's mother's hometown) has observed millions of galaxies.

WISE, or Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, is looking at the sky in the infrared.

The mission ended in 2011 although the satellite remains in space. The gadget has seen millions of black holes which are the darkest and blackest objects in the Universe. However, it has also seen a thousand of hot DOGs (hot dust-obscured-galaxies) which are, on the contrary, the brightest objects we know in the Universe so far.

A violet circle above contains a red object, a hot DOG.

Mormons who developed WISE in Utah believe that if we were able to rise to the heaven and see the hot DOGs from the other side, we would see a hot GOD (galaxy-obscured dust). ;-)

Also, a week ago, Fox News and others amused us by the discovery of sugar in space, in Serpentarius Constellation. A century ago, such a find of glucolaldehyde could be considered as a sign of life. But we no longer think in this way. Whether it plays a role in life or not, this molecule is just pretty simple: HOCH2-CH=O. One doesn't need the miracle of life to produce such things.


  1. Ha ha, the space sugar made me LOL :-D

    But still more essential for life is coffee ... :-P

  2. I would urge NASA to produce a video of this, with "If you could hie to Kolob" (Mormon hymn) as background music.

    (Kolob is the star or planet where God lives, but a Mormon FAQ says that many Mormons regard it as metaphor.)

  3. Expected but still amazing to hear this. Funny how our economies are diving into their financial black holes and same thing happens into space.

  4. Joking aside, glycolaldehyde is pretty simple molecule (dimer of formaldehyde, H2CO) and should not be considered product of life, but rather precursor of life. Mix together glycolaldehyde, glyceraldehyde (formaldehyde trimer), cyanamide (H2N-CN), water and phosphate, and it will rather quickly self-assemble to RNA. (Nature 239, Vol 459 ,2009)

  5. How they are sure that those are black holes?

  6. The WISE instrument was built at the Space Dynamics Laboratory in North Logan, Utah. We were proud of its performance but it is an unexpected pleasure to see an implicit mention in the RF ;) Note that Kip Thorne grew up a few miles down the road in Logan, so there is more than one astrophysical connection to these parts.

  7. Wow, good to see you here.

    And Kip Thorne is indeed a more relevant genius loci from physicists' viewpoint than Romney's Mormon mother, indeed. ;-)

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