Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

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Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby squiz » Thu Oct 15, 2009 6:38 pm

NASA's IBEX (Interstellar Boundary Explorer) spacecraft has made the first all-sky maps of the heliosphere and the results have taken researchers by surprise. The maps are bisected by a bright, winding ribbon of unknown origin...

..."This is a shocking new result," says IBEX principal investigator Dave McComas of the Southwest Research Institute. "We had no idea this ribbon existed--or what has created it. Our previous ideas about the outer heliosphere are going to have to be revised."

Although the ribbon looks bright in the IBEX map, it does not glow in any conventional sense. The ribbon is not a source of light, but rather a source of particles--energetic neutral atoms or ENAs. IBEX's sensors can detect these particles, which are produced in the outer heliosphere where the solar wind begins to slow down and mix with interstellar matter from outside the solar system....

....The ribbon also has fine structure--small filaments of ENA emission no more than a few degrees wide: image. The fine structure is as much of a mystery as the ribbon itself, researchers say.

One important clue: The ribbon runs perpendicular to the direction of the galactic magnetic field just outside the heliosphere, as shown in the illustration at right.

"That cannot be a coincidence," says McComas. But what does it mean? No one knows. "We're missing some fundamental aspect of the interaction between the heliosphere and the rest of the galaxy. Theorists are working like crazy to figure this out."


http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/15oct_ibex.htm?list185832

Not much to add, Just stumbled on this one and would like to hear some thoughts. Interesting yes?
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby sol88 » Thu Oct 15, 2009 7:09 pm

Absofknlutly!!!!

See 'em ad hoc this one! :D

Wonder what K.Birkeland would have to say?

Our previous ideas about the outer heliosphere are going to have to be revised."


Sure are! though revised is a nice way of saying scrapped!

Who'd a thunkit, the universe is electric :roll:
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby squiz » Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:08 pm

My first thought was that of a toroidal ring current, although these are neutral particles the ring has a filamentary structure with the particles ejected in thin streams. It also suggests that the ribbon is perpendicular to the galactic magnetic field?
Seems to match my basic conceptions, but they are basic. Just a curious observer. 8-)
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby jjohnson » Thu Oct 15, 2009 9:32 pm

I'll have to look into the IBEX suite of instruments to see if they have any charged particle detectors in addition to the electrically neutral atoms. Charged particles accelerated by magnetic fields can accelerate non-charged ENA's along with them, much like induced draft in a fluid state, even in weakly ionized and non-equilibrium plasmas.

I also wish that they had another view, from the opposite side (they got all-sky, right?), or even better, a rotating animation of the data. Their idea to observe it and see how and if it changes over time is a good one. I also wish that the illustration depicted solar north, in order to see its relation to the ribbon of ENAs. The heliospheric circuits diagram (H. Alfvén, 1981; A. Peratt, 1992; D. Scott, 2006) show polar and equatorial solar circuits, but Don Scott notes correctly that we don't really know the precise paths that galactic currents take in the vicinity of the Sun. These data may eventually help with part of understanding those currents better. I am also not sure if there is a single galactic magnetic field, although there may be fairly uniform, broad magnetic fields collinear with the axes of spiral arms, for example, within which our sun would be embedded. Perhaps it is partially isolated from the magnetic field and electric currents via its double sheath - the heliosheath or heliopause, if these are terms common to the same effect. Not the bow shock!

I wonder if "shocking" is becoming more fashionable at NASA in descriptions and interpretations of their accelerating and ever improving data stream, as word of the electrical and plasma model spreads. :idea:

It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories instead of theories to suit facts." --Sherlock Holmes, in A Scandal in Bohemia
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Mission finds bright ribbon at solar system border

Unread postby JohnMalone » Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:07 pm

Thu Oct 15, 10:16 pm ET http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20091016/sc_nm/us_space_border/print

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A bright ribbon of hydrogen atoms marks the edge of the solar system, where the Sun's wind meets emissions from the rest of the galaxy, researchers reported on Thursday.

They used telescopes aboard the orbiting Interstellar Boundary Explorer spacecraft or IBEX to look toward the heliopause, which is the boundary where solar wind meets galactic wind at the edge of the solar system beyond Pluto.

Researchers combined images from IBEX with data from the Cassini spacecraft, which is near Saturn, and said it completely alters their ideas about what this border area looks like.

"The IBEX results are truly remarkable, with emissions not resembling any of the current theories or models of this never-before-seen region," David McComas of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas, who led the research, said in a statement.

"We expected to see small, gradual spatial variations at the interstellar boundary, some ten billion miles (16 billion km) away. However, IBEX is showing us a very narrow ribbon that is two to three times brighter than anything else in the sky."

It consists of hydrogen atoms that were once charged but which have been neutralized, they reported in five separate reports in the journal Science.

The researchers say the findings can tell them about the interstellar cloud through which our Milky Way galaxy is moving and which the galaxy will leave in about 10,000 years.

(Editing by Cynthia Osterman)


Does anyone have any commentary or interpretation about these observations in light of Electric Universe models? Or perhaps can point to print or online sources that do?
We come to our new problems full of old ideas and old words, [words] which experience has shown to be fruitful over the years.... We love the old words, the old imagery, and the old analogies, and we keep them for more and more unfamiliar [and] unrecognizable things. -J. Robert Oppenheimer, 1963 (EJL,BBNH)
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby seasmith » Fri Oct 16, 2009 3:27 am

Image

One important clue: The ribbon runs perpendicular to the direction of the galactic magnetic field just outside the heliosphere, as shown in the illustration at right.


squiz-
... although these are neutral particles the ring has a filamentary structure with the particles ejected in thin streams.


Although the "emitted particles" are nuetral, [ suggesting a prior interaction of positive and negative charged ions ], the "filaments" are what be orthoganal to the Magnetic flux-field structure =
as Electricity currents always are.

If an 'eye in the sky' could actually envision the circuit-field, or matrix, of these filamentary patterns;
That would be "shocking", if not Revelatory, for the boys in the white lab coats.

Tesla definately had a clue.

~
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Re: Mission finds bright ribbon at solar system border

Unread postby davesmith_au » Fri Oct 16, 2009 6:08 am

Giday John, from a private communication from Wal Thornhill, used with permission:

Wal Thornhill wrote:This new discovery that is "not explained by any current model" and "will require the textbooks to be rewritten," is powerful evidence in favor of the Electric Sun model since the bright band is controlled by the galactic magnetic field and not the Sun. The overall shape seems to conform to the Z-pinch mechanism and not the mechanical picture of the Sun plowing through the interstellar medium. I plan to have an article written about it real soon.


I suggest "watch this space" - (holoscience.com).
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emissions from edge of solar system

Unread postby tholden » Fri Oct 16, 2009 6:30 am

http://www.livescience.com/space/091015 ... ubble.html


This story was updated at 3:06 p.m. EDT.

In the murky boundary between our solar system and the rest of the galaxy, scientists have spotted a bright band of surprising high-energy emissions.

The results come from the first all-sky map created by NASA's new Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) spacecraft, which launched in October 2008. While orbiting Earth, IBEX monitors incoming neutral atoms that originate billions of miles away at the solar system's edge to learn about the interaction between the sun and the cold expanse of space.

"The IBEX results are truly remarkable, with emissions not resembling any of the current theories or models of this never-before-seen region," said David McComas, IBEX principal investigator at the Southwest Research Institute in Texas. "We expected to see small, gradual spatial variations at the interstellar boundary, some 10 billion miles away. However, IBEX is showing us a very narrow ribbon that is two to three times brighter than anything else in the sky."

This ribbon of energy lies at the very edge of the solar system, where the bubble of charged particles streaming from the sun finally peters out. This bubble is called the heliosphere, and it encompasses the region of space dominated by the sun's influence.

The edge of the solar system

At the boundary of the heliosphere, the sun's positively-charged particles interact with neutral atoms drifting in from interstellar space. When these particles meet, an electron may hop over from a neutral atom to a charged one, called an ion. The result: the charged particle becomes neutral. IBEX detects these fast-moving neutral particles and traces their paths back to the solar system's edge to create a picture of this chaotic frontier.

"We're just now getting a handle on the interaction of the surrounding interstellar medium with the heliosphere, and that's providing us with the big picture," said mission co-investigator Eberhard Möbius of the University of New Hampshire.

The mission scientists said they were surprised to discover the striking band in IBEX's sky maps, because no models had predicted such a pattern beforehand.

McComas said when he first saw the IBEX results he thought, "'Something's wrong,' It was quite a long time before we convinced ourselves that we were right," he said.

The bright ribbon appears to be shaped by the direction of the interstellar magnetic field outside the heliosphere. Scientists think this suggests that the galactic environment just outside the solar system has far more influence on the structure of the heliosphere than previously believed.

"[The ribbon is] aligned by and dominated by the external magnetic field," McComas said in a briefing Thursday. "That's a huge clue as to what's going on. But still we're missing some really fundamental aspect of the interaction - some fundamental physics is missing from our understanding."

The boundary of the solar system was first explored by the Voyager 1 spacecraft in 2004 when it encountered an invisible shock created as the charged particles streaming off the sun hit the neutral gas from interstellar space. Its sister craft Voyager 2 followed into the solar system's edge in 2007. While these spacecraft began the exploration of this wild frontier, IBEX is now revealing a whole new picture.

"The most astounding feature in the IBEX sky maps — the bright narrow ribbon — snakes through the sky between the Voyager spacecraft, where it remained completely undetected until now," McComas said.
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby solrey » Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:01 am

This complementary Cassini data adds a whole other layer of evidence for EU:

Cassini Data Help Redraw Shape of Solar System.

Image
This image shows an artist's conception of the bubble around our solar system moving through the interstellar medium, the matter that fills the local region of our galaxy. New observations from the Cassini spacecraft orbiting Saturn suggest the shape resembles something like a slippery ball moving through smoke.

"These images have revolutionized what we thought we knew for the past 50 years; the sun travels through the galaxy not like a comet but more like a big, round bubble," said Stamatios Krimigis of the Applied Physics Lab, in Laurel, Md., principal investigator for Cassini's Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument which carries the Ion and Neutral Camera. "It's amazing how a single new observation can change an entire concept that most scientists had taken as true for nearly fifty years."


The Ion and Neutral Camera images suggest that the solar wind's interaction with the interstellar medium is instead more significantly controlled by particle pressure and magnetic field energy density.

"The map we've created from the images suggests that pressure from a hot population of charged particles and interaction with the interstellar medium's magnetic field strongly influence the shape of the heliosphere," says Don Mitchell, Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument/Ion and Neutral Camera co-investigator at the Applied Physics Lab.


The results from Cassini complement and extend findings from NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, spacecraft. Data from IBEX and Cassini have made it possible for scientists to construct the first comprehensive sky map of our solar system and its location in the Milky Way galaxy.


Sweeeeeeetttt. 8-)

2009 the International Year of Astronomy? More like the International Year of EU!
Looking forward to Wal Thornhill's article. Someone ought to be working on a robust paper for this. Jump all over it.
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The heliospheric "Bubble"

Unread postby redeye » Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:05 am

Cassini page

movie

Apparently the Heliosphere is a round bubble, not a teardrop shape as predicted.

Cheers!
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby Anaconda » Fri Oct 16, 2009 11:42 am

It doesn't take much to imagine that the folks over at Universe Today had little meaningful to say at first, but with the addition of a comment (mine) that did little more than highlight the quotes of the researchers, themselves, and suggest plasma physics were likely involved, well, all kinds of unpleasant missives were sent my way and toward EU's way:

http://www.universetoday.com/2009/10/15 ... ar-system/

(Actually, the article, itself, was excellent with many quotes about magnetism and even one with magnetism being "dominant". Of course, we know, here, that magnetic fields are caused by electric currents. Also, the article had numerous quotes of researchers admitting they were wrong.)

What to make of the commenters virulent reaction?

Insecurity and a determination to keep folks interested in astronomy away from investigating Electric Universe theory.

In a way, too, bad. Yet, maybe it's just me, but the vitriol doesn't seem attractive to casual readers or suggest a confident scientific foundation (admittedly Universe Today is one of the more caustic mainstream websites).

I humbly suggest readers fan out to their preferred mainstream astronomy site and find this story and place a comment or two, as this is a significant observation & measurement that places doubt on "modern" astronomy and suggests plasma physics is dominant. And with the quotes from the researchers admitting conventional models are wrong, now is a good time to suggest alternative explanations ;)

This might be one of the bigger stories this year and this, as solrey points out, in a year of big stories for Electric Universe theory 8-)
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby Evangielis » Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:20 pm

Hi there, new the forum but long time reader of the site so I wanted to say "Hi!" before posting.

I'm not extremely well versed on the theory yet but can anyone speak on the likely-hood that they'll find another 'ribbon' roughly opposite this one with charged particles flowing the opposite direction?
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Re: The heliospheric "Bubble"

Unread postby redeye » Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:30 pm

There's better stuff here:

Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Our Solar System

and here:

Electric Sun

Cheers!
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby Anaconda » Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:52 pm

earls,

Thanks for the backup over at UT :)
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Re: Giant Ribbon Discovered at Edge of Solar System

Unread postby totemthepole » Fri Oct 16, 2009 3:50 pm

I would like to know what IS the explanation for this ribbon, according to EU theory? Is it caused by the movement of the Sun (and heliosphere) through the interstellar medium? And how can there be a "flow" of neutral particles?

And I went to the other forum mentioned, and was astonished at the way the questions posed by Anaconda were so virulently attacked, and immediately. I had no idea that the mainstream feels so threatened by this theory, and the way they rush to attack any proponents. A real eye opener.
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