Thursday, August 07, 2008

Astronomy Hobbyist Makes Mysterious Find

And her name is Hanny van Arkel!

Hanny van Arkel was poring over photos of galaxies on the Internet last August when she stumbled across a strange object in the night sky: a bright, gaseous mass with a gaping hole in its middle.

"It looked a bit like an irregular galaxy, but I wasn't sure what it was," Van Arkel told CNN. So she posted a query on the Web site of the Galaxy Zoo project, which encourages members of the public to join in astronomy research online.

Van Arkel is a 25-year-old schoolteacher in Heerlen, The Netherlands, not an astrophysicist.

The Hubble team is going to look at it, even.

The name of the strange mass: Hanny's Voorwerp. God, you've got to love that. It means "Hanny's Object."

Hanny van Arkel and out.

Image is the original that Hanny posted her query about.



thepoetryman said...

Damn! Makes me want to find something I can have a strange mass named after me...

A very cool story, LT. Thank you.

skooldays said...

Speaking of the Universe....These Pictures Will Humble Anyone - Guaranteed!

LT said...

I know what you mean, TPM, I know what you mean.

And those are cool images, Skooldays. Thanks.