Happy Cosmic Valentine’s Day! A Gallery of Astronomical Hearts for Space Lovers

The entire universe in blog form
Feb. 14 2013 9:00 AM

Happy Cosmic Valentine’s Day!

Happy Cosmic Valentine's Day!
Doubt thou the stars are fire, doubt that the sun doth move, doubt truth to be a liar, but never doubt that I love.

Image credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team STScI/AURA-ESA/Hubble Collaboration. Acknowledgement: B. Whitmore (Space Telescope Science Institute) and James Long (ESA/Hubble)/Phil Plait

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today is a holiday you either love or hate, for various and obvious enough reasons. But either way I figure it’s another chance to have some fun with astronomy, so I put together a gallery of a dozen pictures of cosmic cardioids, heart-shaped astronomical objects from near and far. Some are mere meters across, others tens of thousands of light years wide, but all of them are a beautiful and fascinating tribute to that fist-sized organ beating away in your chest.

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I also wrote up descriptions of them, because, after all, if we have a holiday to celebrate one organ, why not include another as well? Given it’s from where emotions really flow, who doesn’t love a big, sexy brain?

[P.S. When you’re done, here’s my friend and songstress Kim Boekbinder’s take on the cardiac muscle, called “I Have Your Heart”. You’ll like it.]

Phil Plait writes Slate’s Bad Astronomy blog and is an astronomer, public speaker, science evangelizer, and author of Death From the Skies!  

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