A colorful aurora photographed in early fall. Credit: Bob King

Two Days Before Fall, The Aurora May Come Knocking

It’s been a while. No northern lights in the neighborhood for a couple weeks at least. That could change tomorrow evening (Sept. 19) when the wind blowing from a solar coronal hole wafts past Earth. If the magnetic direction of that wind points south — just like the south pole of a magnet — it…
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Juno Jupiter Sept 1 Superclose CROP

Jupiter’s Poles And Auroras Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before

NASA’s Juno probe just sent back the best and most detailed images ever of Jupiter’s polar regions. I’m sure you’ll agree they’re wonderful eye candy. They were made during the spacecraft’s first flyby of the planet during its long looping orbit. The photos show a chaos of whirling storms and weather activity and a notable…
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Credit: NASA

Juno Sends First Closeups From Jupiter’s Topside

Here’s lookin’ down at ya! NASA’s Juno mission successfully executed the first of 36 orbital flybys of Jupiter this weekend. The time of closest approach with the gas-giant world was 9:44 a.m. Eastern time Saturday (Aug. 27) when Juno passed about 2,600 miles (4,200 km) above Jupiter’s swirling clouds traveling at 130,000 mph (208,000 kph)…
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Exquisite Venus-Jupiter Conjunction This Weekend

I wrote about this in an earlier blog, but I just wanted to give you a reminder about Saturday’s very close conjunction of Venus and Jupiter low in the western sky shortly after sundown. Tonight, the duo will be about 1° apart, on Saturday just 0.1° (⅕ of the moon’s diameter) and on Sunday they’ll…
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Venus Jupiter Aug27 FEA_v2

A Week Of Exceptional Planetary Conjunctions

After a quiet weekend sky-wise, we’ve got a busy week ahead. On Tuesday night, Mars and Saturn will line up with Antares in Scorpius followed on Saturday by the closest conjunction of two naked-eye planets for the year. On Saturday evening, August 27, Venus and Jupiter will approach within a hair’s breadth of each other as viewed…
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