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Cosmic Aurorae


A hypothesis on the comparison of nebular and earthly landscapes through the visual analysis of spectral data


As we isolate within closed walls earthly landscapes seem as distant as nebular ones. If we look up at the night sky the landscapes of the cosmos appear to be within reach. One in particular, shines the brightest— the Orion nebula. As light, from Orion, travels 1344 years to reach us we receive a postcard from the past of this stellar nursery, a birthplace of stars. The dwarfs, the giants and the supergiants are engulfed in dense dark pillars of roiling dust and gas. The different wavelengths of the infrared, visible and ultraviolet regions of the electromagnetic spectrum reveal different contours and dimensions of this nebular landscape.

How then do we unravel this information? How do we look for the valleys, plateaus and mountains that the darkness of the night sky conceals? What do we gather about the time and space of earthly landscapes from nebular ones?


Perhaps we begin this exploration in the study of the relation between the physical parameters of the nebula and the radiation emitted by it and received by us. We study the colours, follow the geometry and we place things in perspective scaled down to our earthly self, and earthly landscapes. 

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