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Full colour visible light images are still in processing.
This image of Titan was taken yesterday during Cassini's 1,200 km (750 mile) flyby past its surface. It's actually a false colour image of the moon, built by merging together four images taken in different wavelengths of light. The red and green colours show areas revealed in Infrared light, and the blue is ultraviolet wavelengths. Full colour visible light images are still in processing, and should be released later this week.
Astrophysicists using the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) radio observatory have revealed new details about a puzzling object called SS 433; a microquasar with bizarre corkscrew-shaped jets blasting out. SS 433 is probably a black hole or neutron star that's feeding on material from a normal companion star. Some of this material is consumed, but much of it is blasted back out at a quarter the speed of light. SS 433 wobbles like a child's top every 162 days, which causes the unusual corkscrew shape of the jets.
NASA unveiled its new supercomputer on Tuesday, which took the lead as the fasted computer in the world. Named "Columbia", to commemorate the space shuttle, the supercomputer is built up from 10,240 Itanium 2 processors, and is capable of 42.7 teraflops (trillion calculations per second). Columbia is so powerful that scientists used it to accurately predict the path of hurricanes five days in advance. Complex aircraft analysis that used to take years can now be performed in a single day. Amazingly, the computer was built and installed in only 120 days at NASA's Ames Research Center.
NASA's Cassini spacecraft swept past Titan on Tuesday, and returned the most detailed images ever taken of its surface - from an altitude of only 1,200 km (miles) above its surface. Previous attempts to see the moon's surface have been frustrating because of its thick atmosphere. scientists still aren't sure what the various light and dark areas are; they could be solid landmasses surrounded by oceans of liquid ethane and methane. The spacecraft took more than 500 images, so they're going to take a while to completely transfer to Earth - better pictures should be revealed in the next few days.
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