Mars Saturn Antares April 29_2016_S_FEA

Get Re-acquainted With The Night

Clouds, commitments and a bad cold have kept the stars and I apart for weeks.  Last night’s clear sky finally brought us back together. I can be a miner when it comes to the night, drilling for nebulae, galaxies and comets with my telescope for hours, extracting one glittering gem after another. Other times, I prefer to tilt my…
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Moon Mars Saturn conj_FEA

See A Moon-Mars-Saturn Get-together

The full moon put in an appearance last night roughly halfway between Jupiter and the duo of Saturn and Mars. Following the moon’s movement through the zodiac is like having your own personal driver. Just hop on. One night, you’ll zip by Jupiter. The next night, you might be dropped off on the doorstep of a bright star cluster.  Monday morning…
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Cassini interstellar dust_FEA

Cassini Finds Grains Of Dust From Beyond The Solar System

We may have come from the stars but try finding any leftover stardust in the solar system these days. It would seem all the frosting’s been licked from the spoon. Well, maybe not all. NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has detected the faint but distinct signature of dust coming from between the stars. The probe’s been studying…
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Use this map to help you track comet 252P/LINEAR through June. The position is shown for 5 a.m. local Daylight Saving Time with the comet's position marked every 3 days. Stars are labeled with their Greek letters and numbers and plotted to magnitude +7.5. Saturn and Mars' positions are for early April.  All the Greek lettered stars are bright enough to see with the naked eye. Created with Chris Marriott's SkyMap

No Foolin’, We Might Get Aurora Tonight / Comet 252P Still Bright

I’d love to write about a big aurora coming April Fools night just to kid around. Unfortunately, I can’t do that because there really is a chance for northern lights tonight. A recent coronal hole opened up and allowed a stream of particles loose in Earth’s direction that’s expected to impact tonight. Space weather experts…
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The trio of ridges on Titan known as Mithrim Montes is home to the hazy Saturnian moon's tallest peak. The mountain, which has an elevation of 10,948 feet (3,337 meters), is located midway along the lower of the three ridges shown in this radar image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft.

Meet Titan’s Tallest Peak / A Frustrating Comet!

Someday someone will be the first to climb an extraterrestrial peak. I’ve a hunch the first piton will be hammered into a crack on a Martian mountain. In 200 years, when that becomes old hat. climbers might look further afield to Saturn’s largest moon, Titan. Recently, astronomers measured the tallest peak there at 10,948 feet…
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