Neptune By Way Of The Moon

Tonight, the crescent moon will look about a wide as an unclipped fingernail. You’ll spot it right away in the southwestern sky at dusk, high and bright. Just 2° (four moon diameters) to the moon’s upper right lurks another member of the solar system, the planet Neptune. The two are in conjunction tonight in the…
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Hunters Recover First Meteorites From Michigan Fireball

On Jan. 16 around 8:10 p.m. local time, a brilliant, green fireball sliced across the skies of southern Michigan near Ann Arbor. Many eyewitnesses said it looked as bright as a full moon. The American Meteor Society, a clearinghouse for meteor sightings, has received about 640 reports so far from people who saw the object…
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Tonight’s Scrap-of-a-Moon Challenge

Tonight’s moon will barely be there, but that’s exactly what will make it so beautiful. New moon occurred yesterday at 8:17 p.m. (Central Time), making this evening’s moon just 20 hours old from the East Coast, 21 hours from the Midwest, 22 from the mountain states and 23 from the West Coast. Very young and…
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Shields Up! We’re Headed Into The Asteroid Belt

Science fiction movies and TV series often depict encounters with asteroid belts or swarms in deep space. Terror ensues as the crew of the hapless ship pitches this way and that while attempting to dodge the rocky onslaught. Does that really happen? After watching these scenes play out for years, you can’t fault anyone for…
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Last Stand For The Northern Cross And First Black Hole

The Northern Cross is almost as beloved by beginning stargazers as Orion’s Belt or the North Star. It’s one of the better known asterisms, an easily recognizable pattern of stars within or shared by more than one constellation. The cross is the larger part of the more extended constellation Cygnus the Swan. Just re-envision the…
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