Credit: NASA

Cosmic Rays Are Beating Up On Key Space Weather Satellite

Our finest tool for warning us of impending solar storms has been having a tough go since it was launched in 2015. Galactic cosmic rays may be to blame. NASA’s Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) hangs its hat at the L1 Lagrange Point, a handy parking spot where the gravitational pulls of the Earth and sun cancel out.…
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Sputnik_FEA

It’s About To Get A Lot More Crowded Up There

Two nights ago at a star party I attended to celebrate Earth Day, a young boy looked up in Jupiter’s direction, saw a moving “star” and shouted out. We all looked up to see a satellite moving swiftly across the constellation Leo. Lots of people love seeing satellites. They provide a unique human-to-cosmos link to outer…
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30-second time exposure of the space station cutting across the Big Dipper last night Aug. 6, 2014. Bob King

Space Station Sails Back Into Evening Skies

Woo-hoo! The space station’s back in the evening sky and visible from many locations in the northern hemisphere. If you live in the central and northern U.S. or Europe, you can look forward to about two weeks of non-stop passes. Many more of us are out in the evening compared to before dawn, making this…
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Artist's view of the proposed Mayak (Beacon) satellite orbiting Earth. Credit: cosmomayak.ru / Mayak Project

Russian Satellite May Soon Become Brightest “Star” In The Sky

If a Russian crowdfunded group succeeds, we might soon see a satellite brighter than Venus gliding overhead at night. Called Mayak, Russian for “Beacon”, a team from Moscow University of Mechanical Engineering is working to build the orbiting artificial star to launch along with the Canopus-B-IR satellite aboard a Soyuz-2 rocket as soon as the middle of…
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ISS feature

Dinner Date With The Space Station

The International Space Station (ISS) returned to the evening sky this week, making routine passes right around dinnertime. I saw one by accident two nights ago; the following night it cut directly across Orion’s Belt. It’s always fun to anticipate the arrival of the ISS at dusk, when it’s easy to get outside for a look compared…
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