Latest Work

Hello, I am trying something new with my website. I mostly tend to my Flickr gallery at this point, so to reduce the upkeep and redundancy, I am using the Flickr API to pull my latest images straight from my gallery over there. Clicking on any image will simply take you to its page within my Flickr gallery (external link).

A categorical listing of work, separated into albums, is located here (external link).


Grand Stellar Nursery NGC 604 from Chandra

Grand Stellar Nursery NGC 604 from Chandra

An x-ray/Chandra only version of NGC 604. I just like to include these to compare with the other two images. You can see how the point source at the top is blue which really separates it from the nebula’s emissions.

This image was possible thanks to data from the following Chandra proposal:
The Giant Extragalactic Star-Forming Region NGC 604

Red: .30-.95 keV
Green: .95-2.87 keV
Blue: 2.87-7.00 keV

North is NOT up. It is 90° clockwise from up.


Grand Stellar Nursery NGC 604 From HST & Chandra

Grand Stellar Nursery NGC 604 From HST & Chandra

The brightest x-ray object in this scene is an unknown object at the upper left. The next brightest thing seems to be a distant active galaxy nucleus (AGN) coincidentally positioned just above the nebula. In third place comes NGC 604 itself. It’s hard to compete with an AGN, but these young stars are doing an admirable job. X-rays are generated when things get super hot, and that’s what’s happening within the cavernous interior bubble of the nebula.

There’s a better explanation and additional imagery at Chandra’s website here: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2009/n604/

This image was possible thanks to data from the following Chandra proposal:
The Giant Extragalactic Star-Forming Region NGC 604

In addition, all HST proposals listed under this image were also used: flic.kr/p/S5kLbG

Chandra data:
Violet / Magenta overlay: ACIS .30-7.00 keV

PHAT data:
Red: WFC3/IR F160W
Yellow-Green: ACS/WFC F814W
Cyan: ACS/WFC F475W
Blue: WFC3/UVIS F336W

WFPC2/WFC data:
F673N, F658N, and F656N combined together into a pinkish "screen" layer

North is NOT up. It is 90° clockwise from up.


Grand Stellar Nursery NGC 604

Grand Stellar Nursery NGC 604

Finally decided to stop frustrating myself with some 3D galaxy illustrations and got back to some Hubble processing I’ve been meaning to do for a while now. Last year, HST finished the PHAT survey of nearby galaxy M33, or the Triangulum galaxy. There are massive mosaics of this available, but the survey also enabled me to create a much more complete image of a nebula which is of particular interest. Let me just quote from Wikipedia since the sentence is so evocative already:

"It is over 6,300 times more luminous than the Orion Nebula, and if it were at the same distance it would outshine Venus."

Impressive as it is, the Orion Nebula can’t compete with NGC 604. Orion is just lucky to be so close to us. NGC 604 is where the star-formation party is really at. It only takes a few million years for light from this cosmic rave party to reach us.

Note that the PHAT data alone wasn’t enough to make this image. I went back and made use of older WFPC2/WFC data to really make this cloud of gas pop in bright pink colors. Otherwise it would have looked blueish since the nebula is most apparent within the F475W observations.

This image was made possible by the following Hubble programs:
A Legacy Imaging Survey of M33.
WFPC Augmentation - NGC 604 and M16 - Cycle 4 and Future-Cycle Contination
Stellar Populations in Local Group Galaxies (WC13): Cycle 4
Giant H II Regions and the Connection with Starbursts and Diffuse Ionized Gas

PHAT data:
Red: WFC3/IR F160W
Yellow-Green: ACS/WFC F814W
Cyan: ACS/WFC F475W
Blue: WFC3/UVIS F336W

WFPC2/WFC data:
F673N, F658N, and F656N combined together into a pinkish "screen" layer

North is NOT up. It is 90° clockwise from up.


Sa Spirals

Sa Spirals

Top-down and edgewise look at some unbarred spirals. Time progresses from left to right, with earlier/younger appearance at the left, and later/older appearance at the right, approaching or reaching lenticular stage. Galaxies not necessarily to scale. By my understanding, the older, rounder ones are typically much larger than their younger forms.

Photoshop has a new symmetry mode which I made heavy use of to draw these. I also discovered that I am terrible at drawing logarithmic spirals myself, so I made use of an online graphing tool to get the curves right.


Jupiter Full Rotation (OPAL Cycle 24)

Jupiter Full Rotation (OPAL Cycle 24)

This is a 3d rendering of Jupiter using OPAL data mapped to a Jupiter-shaped spheroid. I was careful to map the cloud bands accurately to the correct latitude. I also tried to replicate some of the effects of peering at Jupiter through the Hubble telescope by using a few shader hacks in Blender. The result appears fairly realistic.

We are looking at Jupiter at an inclination of -3°, so if you feel that you can see a little more of the southern pole than the northern, that is why. I don’t know the exact inclination with respect to HST at the time, but when I matched it to single exposure observations, somewhere around 2-4° seemed about right. The phase angle was 1° at the time so solar illumination is almost straight on.

This animation represents Jupiter as it appeared around 2017 April.

A link to the OPAL maps is here:
archive.stsci.edu/prepds/opal/

Red: WFC3/UVIS F631N
Green: WFC3/UVIS F502N
Blue: WFC3/UVIS 395N

North is not up, but Jupiter’s north pole is.


Jupiter & Io 2017 Apr 03

Jupiter & Io 2017 Apr 03

I did a quick Twitter thread talking a bit about what goes into processing one of these Jupiter images. This particular one I also wanted to show why I didn’t like the official release image released last year. For that image, the sides of Jupiter were trimmed off, making it look a lot rounder than it is. The clouds are also a bit misaligned in some places, resulting in some odd colorful fringing if one looks closely. It’s been bugging me for quite a while now. I’m afraid of seeming antagonistic about things sometimes.

Here’s a link to the thread turned into a "moment":
twitter.com/i/moments/1058865553001967616

Did some final tweaks after the Twitter thread including filling in the left side and some sharpening. Note that part of Io was missing in the F631N data, so some of the F502N data was adapted to make the moon appear complete. The end result is probably not much different visually from how it would have appeared if Io wasn’t slightly off the edge.

This image represents Jupiter as it appeared on 2017 April 03 at 02:50:19 UTC.

Data from the following proposal comprises this image:
Hubble 2020: Outer Planet Atmospheres Legacy (OPAL) Program

Red: WFC3/UVIS F631N
Green: WFC3/UVIS F502N
Blue: WFC3/UVIS 395N

North is 50.56° clockwise from up.


Jupiter in Five Filters

Jupiter in Five Filters

Ok, another version of the Extended Spectrum Jupiter, this time with five filters instead of three. The difference is very apparent as the additional filters provided further wavelength coverage and provided a less drastic separation of colors. It’s still quite colorful, as you can see.

The same limb brightening is apparent with reddish hues more prominent at the poles and blue and cyan at the equatorial regions.

The Great Red Spot appears intensely red as it was relatively dark in both visible and near-uv wavelengths. Ahead of the GRS, nearly centered on the southern hemisphere, is Red Spot Junior.

Io appears at the upper right as a glowing red dot. It appears less intense in this version due to the additional filters.

This image represents Jupiter as it appeared on 2017 Feb 02 at 03:00:20 UTC.

Observations from the following proposal were used to create this image:
archive.stsci.edu/proposal_search.php?mission=hst&id=...

Red: WFC3 UVIS FQ889N
Orange: WFC3 UVIS F502N
Green: WFC3 UVIS F395N
Cyan: WFC3 UVIS F275W
Blue: WFC3 UVIS F225W

North is up.


Jupiter in Extended Spectrum

Jupiter in Extended Spectrum

I’m torturing Jupiter again with strange filter combinations. This one combines near-infrared, visible green, and near-ultraviolet light. Shorter wavelengths are scattered along the equatorial regions, appearing as a ghostly blue glow. Longer wavelengths are more prominent at the poles, causing them to glow red. I remain unsure if this is scattering or emission, though I am leaning towards atmospheric scattering. A more familiar example is our planet Earth, which itself can appear slightly blue at its limb.

The Great Red Spot appears intensely red as it was relatively dark in both visible and near-uv wavelengths. Ahead of the GRS, nearly centered on the southern hemisphere, is Red Spot Junior.

Io appears at the upper right as a fiercely glowing red dot. Io is much brighter than Jupiter itself at this particular band of near-infrared, and it was bright enough this time to have saturated (turned 100% white) the sensor, destroying some details.

This image represents Jupiter as it appeared on 2017 Feb 02 at 03:00:20 UTC.

Observations from the following proposal were used to create this image:
archive.stsci.edu/proposal_search.php?mission=hst&id=...

Red: WFC3 UVIS FQ889N
Green: WFC3 UVIS F502N
Blue-Cyan: WFC3 UVIS F275W

North is up.


PN M 3-1

PN M 3-1

Saw this lovely little planetary nebula in the news today for its closely orbiting binary star system, and realized I hadn’t processed it.

ras.ac.uk/news-and-press/research-highlights/ultra-close-...

For the academically interested, an astronomical paper on that is available here:
academic.oup.com/mnrasl/article/482/1/L75/5064238

h/t: Daniel Fischer

Did things a little differently for this one. Used the c0f FITS files from MAST instead of the processed ones from the HLA. The results seem a bit cleaner. That means this image is not geometrically corrected, but the WFPC2/PC detector is such a tiny field of view that it doesn’t matter much. It also means the pixel scale is different from all the HLA processed imagery, which does matter. I’ve noted it below.

Data from Proposal 6347 were used to create this image.
A Search for Jets in Planetary Nebulae

Pixel scale at full size (636x614 px) is 0.04554" per pixel

Red: WFPC2/PC F658N
Green: Pseudo
Blue: WFPC2/PC F656N

North is up.


LMC N63A

LMC N63A

Evidence of a supernova remnant in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Apparently the leading edge of an otherwise invisible (in these wavelengths) bubble expanding outward and colliding with some gas, which causes that gas to glow nicely.

I’ve long thought this one of the strangest patches of glowing gas. Every once in a while I see the image almost at random, and I always pause for it. Decided to process it myself just to stare at it some more. Looks like a balloon popped in space.

Data from the following proposals were used to create this image:
High Resolution Imaging of Bubble and Superbubbles in HII Regions
Supernova Remnants in a Cloudy Interstellar Medium

Orange: F673N WFPC2/WF
Cyan: F656N WFPC2/WF
Blue: F502N WFPC2/WF

North is NOT up. It is 40.2° clockwise from up.


There are more pictures at my Flickr Gallery (external link)