Moonrise over Lake Superior from Duluth, MInn. Click the image to find when the Full Strawberry Moon rises for your town on the solstice on Monday (June 20). Credit: Bob King

Wow — First Day Of Summer And A Full Moon Too!

Stealthy summer has been advancing this way since December 22. That date marked the winter solstice or first day of winter, when the sun reached its lowest point in the sky in the northern hemisphere. Monday June 20th it will reach its highest point in the sky, officially marking the start of summer. Meteorological summer may have…
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element117 LawLivNatLab_FEA

In The Search For New Elements, Look No Further Than Earth

Elements are well, elementary. Each is a substance composed of the same kind of atoms and no others. Copper is made only of copper atoms, all of which have 29 protons — no more or less — in their nuclei. If an atom has 30 protons, it’s not copper but zinc. And if it has…
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Venus SOHO C2 LASCO June 4_FEA

Venus — Going, Going, Gone!

Don’t look now — and I really mean that — but Venus is about to be occulted by the sun. Today the brightest planet sits invisibly one sun-diameter to the west of the sun. No one would even attempt to see an object that close to our daytime star lest they wish to flirt with disaster.…
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View to the east showing lots of active rays or pillars. My wide-angle lens was only wide enough to cover 1/3 of the display at a time. Credit: Bob King

Auroras Expected Sat. Night / AZ Fireball Update

Get ready for stormy weather. Zillions of sub-microscopic electrons and protons from a solar coronal hole are expected to impact Earth’s magnetic domain beginning sometime tomorrow afternoon. Space weather forecasters are calling for moderate storm conditions through about 10 p.m. (CDT) Saturday evening followed by a return to minor storm from 10 till 1 a.m. Based…
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Mars Moon Saturn Antares May 21_2016_S_FEA

Mars Diamond, What A Sight! / That Giant Sunspot

Last night late, the Full Moon, Mars, Saturn and Antares aligned in a diamond over my front yard. I’ll bet you saw it, too. The figure measured 12° wide and 9° deep and made walking the dog more illuminating than usual. The diamond was a one-night-only affair as the moon is never still. Tonight, you’ll…
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