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News for Norther Colorado and the world

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

‘Earth & Sky’ Archives

Earthsky Tonight—August 12, Moon and Venus in

Earthsky Tonight—August 12, Moon and Venus in evening, 2010 Perseid meteors before dawn

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The 2010 Perseid meteor shower peaks tonight. Look late tonight and between midnight and dawn on Friday, August 13. As always, this forecast represents a best guess, not a certainty. Any clear night on the nights of August 11, 12 and 13 should be fine for watching the Perseid meteor shower! Be sure to go to a dark location and watch for an hour or more. The annual Perseid meteor shower ranks as one of the most prolific ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight – August 11, How to find the

Earthsky Tonight – August 11, How to find the radiant point for Perseid meteors

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Here is the radiant point for the famous Perseid meteor shower. The 2010 Perseid meteors are peaking over the next few days. As always, you will see the most meteors between midnight and dawn. The morning of August 12 should be good. The morning of August 13 might be best for watching meteors. You might see meteors on the morning of August 14 as well, although the Perseids do tend to fall off rapidly after their ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—July 10, Look toward the center of

Earthsky Tonight—July 10, Look toward the center of the Milky Way galaxy

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Yesterday’s chart showed the part of our Milky Way galaxy that stretches overhead in the evening. Today’s chart is aimed toward the galaxy’s center, which is located some 30,000 light-years away. Remember, when you are looking at this starlit band across the sky – visible from country locations – you are peering edgewise into our own galaxy. Today’s chart shows that the starlit trail of the Milky Way ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 8, Look overhead to see the

Earthsky Tonight—August 8, Look overhead to see the summer Milky Way

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The moon will be new tomorrow and then in a waxing crescent phase in the west after sunset in the next few days. That means that, over the coming week, the moon will set soon after sunset and be mostly absent from the evening sky. A moonless sky means this is a good time to get out into the country for a look at the summer Milky Way: the edgewise view into our own galaxy. Here is the view if you are standing facing east ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 7, Venus, Mars, Saturn form

Earthsky Tonight—August 7, Venus, Mars, Saturn form planetary trio in west

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Around August 7 and 8, look in the west after sunset for the planets Venus, Mars and Saturn as they form what is known as a planetary trio. Around August 7 and 8, look in the west after sunset for the planets Venus, Mars and Saturn as they form what is known as a planetary trio. A planetary trio is a grouping of three planets that fits inside a circle that is only 5 degrees wide. Typically, a binocular field spans about 5 ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 6, Mercury challenging, but

Earthsky Tonight—August 6, Mercury challenging, but easiest to see around August 6

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Mercury, the innermost planet of the solar system, is not often visible in our sky because it is always near the sun. When this inner world does become visible, it appears but briefly in the evening after sunset – or in the morning before sunrise. At present Mercury shines as an evening “star.” Today, Mercury reaches its greatest elongation for the entire year: 27 degrees east of the sun. (Your fist at an arm length ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 5, Constellation Cepheus

Earthsky Tonight—August 5, Constellation Cepheus looks like a house

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The constellation Cepheus represents a King. It is faint, but its distinctive shape makes it easy to locate, if you look in the north on August evenings. Cepheus resembles the stick house we all drew as children – and that children today still draw – with a square for the base and a triangle for the roof. In the case of Cepheus, the tip of the roof (a star known as Gamma Cephei, or Er Rai) points generally ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 4, Cassiopeia the Queen on

Earthsky Tonight—August 4, Cassiopeia the Queen on summer evenings

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org One of the most recognizable constellations is Cassiopeia the Queen, which now can be found in the northeastern sky a couple of hours after the sun goes down. This constellation has the distinct shape of a W, or M, depending on your perspective. Cassiopeia is associated with a queen of Ethiopia. She is sometimes called the Lady of the Chair. Queen Cassiopeia was said to have offended the sea nymphs, or Nereids, by ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 3, Dipper points to Polaris,

Earthsky Tonight—August 3, Dipper points to Polaris, plus see Mizar and Alcor

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The two outer stars in the bowl of the Big Dipper – Dubhe and Merak – always point to Polaris, the North Star. To find this Dipper at this time of year, look toward the northwest in the evening. Once you have found it – after locating Polaris – look more carefully at the second star from the end of the Big Dipper’s handle. If your sky is dark enough, and your eyesight is good, you will see that this star, ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—August 2, Find a globular cluster

Earthsky Tonight—August 2, Find a globular cluster by the Scorpion’s heart

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org At nightfall, look in your southern sky for the bright ruddy star that is called the Scorpion’s Heart – Antares, the brightest star in the constellation Scorpius. Antares is always up on summer evenings. It is a bright red star known for twinkling rapidly. If you have binoculars, sweep for an object near Antares on the sky’s dome. This object is called M4, and it’s a globular star cluster located just one degree to ... Full Story

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