Bid Adieu to Fall12/16/14
Winter solstice arrives on Sunday, lacustrine deposits discovered by Mars Rover Curiosity, view Mars and Aldebaran on Sunday.
NASA Halts New Horizens’ Hibernation
The Geminid Meteor Shower peaks Friday; earliest sunsets of 2014 will occur over the next few days; NASA Orion launch ; and New Horizons wakes up.
Sunrise – (earliest) sunset (this Friday)
Earliest Sunset - This week Friday 4:34 and we dwell there for a week. Then sunsets slowly drift later. But sunrise time continues to come later until early January. Orion Capsule scheduled to launch this week - NASA's unmanned flight test of its big...
Frosty Philae feelin’ fine
The Philae comet lander is fine - hibernating until next summer when extra sunlight can recharge its batteries and it can continue its surface studies. Temperatures where it landed run about -245F. The science behind the new movie 'Interstellar' - the...
This shower is a mere trickle
Leonid Meteors are visable late tonight into dawn tomorrow, although Leonids are a weak shower. Other night sky treats include: Mars early in the evening, Orion rises at 8 p.m., Jupiter late in the evening, 11:30 p.m. Moon also visible in the pre-dawn...
Every pictor tells a story
Chinese spacecraft Change'e 5T1 launched last Wednesday, did a swing around the moon and is now on its way back to Earth. Because of the very high apogee above the moon, 380,000kms, an excellent photo of Earth and the moon was taken.
Tricks on terra-firma, treats overhead
Halloween and cross-quarter day comes this Friday with a first quarter moon, followed by All Saints Day November 1st. And then, clocks go back Sunday one hour to Standard Time. Late summer constellations at dusk in the west, Orion peeks above the...
Consult your travel agent for 8/21/17 hotel special rates!
A partial solar eclipse will begin just as the sun is setting Thursday afternoon. Derrick offers tips for safe viewing. Next total solar eclipse for us not until 2017. The discovery of a relatively nearby, relatively new galaxy has astronomers...
Blinking red light means: Stop and look aloft
Mars and its red twin Antares cozy up to each other in the night sky. A small nearby galaxy intrigues astronomers focusing on the massive black hole at its core.
“Hey Joe – Where You Goin’ . . .” To Outer Space
Espresso supplier Lavazza has teamed up with an Italian engineering company to produce a zero-gravity Espresso machine that's headed to ISS next April. Astronauts are looking for a good cup of Joe and the Italian astronauts in particular have been...
MAVEN & MOM at Mars
Two New Spacecraft in Orbit at Mars; MAVEN (atmospheric studies) and the Indian Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM); (atmospheric and surface detectors on board) will gather data to be shared with scientists WW. India is the only other country besides UK to...
For more summer, go South… or way North
Summer ended at 10:29 p.m. Monday. If we were on Mars we could enjoy summer for a whole 6 months, thanks to it’s two year orbit around the sun! Cassini descends to 875 miles above Titan in its 101st close flyby of Saturn’s moon. Objective is to look...
Hooray for the Harvest Moon!
Wednesday's full moon is this year's Harvest Moon - way out ahead of Autumnal Equinox by 14 days. Next is Hunters' Moon in October. Jupiter and Venus still have the pre-dawn sky in the East; Mars and Saturn still have the evening sky in the Southwest.
99 + 44/100ths% pure
For the first time - scientists have identified a second generation star - one made up of the remnants of the earliest stars ever. The spectrogram shows that the proportion of elements that make up the star is skewed toward a lack of heavy elements.
One small year for a Mars rover…
The Mars Rover Curiosity has spent now one Martian year on Mars (which equals two Earth years), traveled 5.5 miles and taken over 178,000 pictures - available online! Here's your chance to name a crater on Mars - for a donation to advance astronomy...
Dog days retrieve longer nights
Close planet conjunction - Jupiter and Venus very close in tomorrow's pre-dawn sky . Watch the moon slide down to join them this week. Closest on Saturday morning. Saturn and Mars still show in the evening twilight - This week watch Mars slide...
Time to pursue the Perseids
The annual Perseid Meteor Shower peaks early this week. The Rosetta spacecraft, now in orbit around Comet Churyumov-Gerisimenko after a 10 years, 4 billion mile journey, will drop a lander in November to sample and test for organic molecules
Let it gush, let it gush, let it gush
Count of geysers seen on Saturn's moon Enceladus up to over 100 - No question about composition of jets, definitely water as we know it. A question now of how far down they come from.
Time keeps on slippin’, slippin’ slippin’ …
Amount of daylight is slowly receding. . . Sunset was at 8:33, now it's 8:22; Sunrise is 5:52, was 5:33. We'll really feel the change in August, so enjoy it now. Friday Aug.1 is a cross-quarter day - Lammas. United Arab Emirates Plans Mission to Mars...
When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie – that’s a supermoon!
Supermoon? - Ridiculous! Invented by Astrologer Richard Nolle in 1979. Difference in size between these full moons and other full moons is less than 2%. You cannot see the difference. The moon looks especially large when it rises at full phase because...
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