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News for Norther Colorado and the world

Monday, March 30, 2015

‘Earth & Sky’ Archives

Earthsky Tonight—June 6: Mars and Regulus in

Earthsky Tonight—June 6: Mars and Regulus in conjunction

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The planet Mars and the star Regulus, the brightest star in the constellation Leo, highlight their conjunction this evening. Two heavenly bodies are said to be in conjunction whenever they stand north and south of one another. Tonight, Mars and Regulus shine about a pinky-width apart. By all means, look at the evening couple through binoculars or low power on a telescope. The contrast of color makes their partner’s ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—June 5: Moon and Jupiter pair up

Earthsky Tonight—June 5: Moon and Jupiter pair up before sunrise

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Before daybreak tomorrow (Sunday, June 6), the two most brilliant heavenly bodies of the early morning sky – the waning crescent moon and the dazzling planet Jupiter – couple up together to light up the dawn and predawn hours. The moon and Jupiter showcase themselves all over the world, except at far northern latitudes near and north of the Arctic Circle. That far north, the June sun shines for 24 hours, or nearly 24 ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—June 4: Rastaban and Eltanin belong

Earthsky Tonight—June 4: Rastaban and Eltanin belong to constellation Draco

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org One of you asked, "What are constellations?" The answer is that they are just patterns of stars on the sky’s dome. The Greeks and Romans, for example, named them for their gods and goddesses, and for many sorts of animals. In the 20th century, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) formalized the names and boundaries of the constellations. Now every star in the sky belongs to one or another constellation. The ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—June 3: See Draco the Dragon and a

Courtesy of EarthSky   A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org If you have a dark sky, you will be able to pick the constellationDraco the Dragon winding around the North Star, Polaris. First, find the Big Dipper high in the north on June evenings. The two outer stars in the Dipper’s bowl point to Polaris, the North Star, which marks the end of the Little Dipper’s handle. The Little Dipper is relatively faint. If you can find both Dippers, then your sky is probably pretty ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—June 2: Little Dipper, Clipped

Earthsky Tonight—June 2: Little Dipper, Clipped wings of Draco the Dragon

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The Little Dipper is an asterism – a star pattern that is not a constellation. The Little Dipper really belongs to the constellation Ursa Minor the Little Bear. Richard Hinkley Allen in his book STAR NAMES Their Lore and Meaning claims the Greek constellation Ursa Minor was never mentioned in the literary works of Homer (9th century B.C.) or Hesiod (8th century B.C.). That is probably because this constellation was not ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—June 1: Big Dipper high in north on

Earthsky Tonight—June 1: Big Dipper high in north on June evenings

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Here is the legendary Big Dipper, now high in the north during the evening hours. It is one of the most familiar star patterns in the sky because its shape really resembles a dipper. Less familiar – and tougher to find – is the Little Dipper. Here is how you can find it. First, locate the Big Dipper in the northern sky during the evening hours. Notice that the Big Dipper has two parts: a bowl and a handle. See the ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—- May 25: Mercury at greatest

Earthsky Tonight—- May 25: Mercury at greatest morning elongation on May 26

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Mercury, the solar system’s innermost planet, reaches its greatest morning elongation from the sun tomorrow (Wednesday, May 26). The term greatest elongation specifically applies to inferior planets – the planets that orbit the sun inside of Earth’s orbit: Mercury and Venus. As seen from Earth, Mercury – like a dog on a leash – never strays far from the sun. Mercury only becomes visible in the morning sky when ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—May 24: Bright star near moon is

Earthsky Tonight—May 24: Bright star near moon is Spica

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The waxing gibbous moon glides past the star Spica in the constellation Virgo this evening. It passes relatively close to Spica for a day or two each month that Spica is visible in our night sky. It does the same with other bright stars such as Regulus in the constellation Leo, Antares in the constellation Scorpius and Aldebaran in the constellation Taurus. Have you ever heard of the moon near Polaris the North Star? If ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight – May23: Moon leaving Saturn,

Earthsky Tonight – May23: Moon leaving Saturn, approaching Spica

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Yesterday – on Saturday evening – the waxing gibbous moon shone close to the planet Saturn. This Sunday evening, a fuller waxing gibbous moon beams in between Saturn and the star Spica. Tomorrow – on Monday – a larger yet waxing gibbous moon will couple up with Spica, the brightest star in the constellation Virgo. As the moon makes its rounds through the starry heavens, its passes through every constellation of ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight—May 22, Moon near golden planet

Earthsky Tonight—May 22, Moon near golden planet Saturn

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org find the moon in a waxing gibbous phase this evening – more than half lighted but less than full – in the sky from sunset until after midnight. Tonight’s moon will be visible near a bright object in our sky. It’s not a star, but a planet – Saturn, planet of the rings. Given clear skies, almost everyone around the world can see the moon and Saturn near each other this evening. Earth passed between Saturn and ... Full Story

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