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News for Norther Colorado and the world

Monday, July 6, 2015

‘Earth & Sky’ Archives

Earthsky Tonight, February 12, 2010: Use Big

Earthsky Tonight, February 12, 2010: Use Big Dipper’s Pointers to find Polaris

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org If you can find the Big Dipper in the northern sky in mid to late evening tonight, you can find the North Star, Polaris. The Big Dipper is not a constellation. Instead, it is an asterism, just a recognizable pattern of stars on the sky’s dome. It is part of the constellation Ursa Major, the Greater Bear. A well-known trick for finding the North Star, or Polaris, is that the two outermost stars in the bowl of ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 11, 2010: For those at

Earthsky Tonight, February 11, 2010: For those at southerly latitudes, Canopus!

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Here is a star that northern stargazers rarely see. It is Canopus, and it is the second-brightest star in the entire sky. You won’t see this star from the northern U.S. or similar latitudes. But northern skywatchers who travel south in winter – or people in latitudes like those in the southern U.S. – enjoy watching this star. You can always find Canopus by first locating Sirius, the sky’s brightest ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 10, 2010: You need a dark

Earthsky Tonight, February 10, 2010: You need a dark sky to see Eridanus

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Here is one of the sky’s most graceful and beautiful constellations, if you have access to a very dark sky. You won’t see this one from the city, or even the suburbs. Eridanus the River begins near the star Rigel in the constellation Orion. It wells up in a great loop before ambling back down toward the southern horizon. Eridanus is one of the longest and faintest constellations. It’s variously said ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 9, 2010: The Hare and the

Earthsky Tonight, February 9, 2010: The Hare and the Dove below the Hunter

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org If you look southward around 8 p.m., you will easily notice a short, straight row of three medium bright stars. These stars represent the Belt of Orion the Hunter. Also, notice the star Sirius. On old sky maps, the mighty Hunter of the ancient myths is seen poised with an upraised club and shield, as though fending off the raging Bull, Taurus. Meanwhile, two meek animals seem to cower at the Hunter’s ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 8, 2010: Zodiacal light is

Earthsky Tonight, February 8, 2010: Zodiacal light is glowing pyramid in west after dark

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Moonless February and March evenings present the best time of year to see zodiacal light in the evening sky. The light appears when all traces of twilight have left the sky. It looks like a hazy pyramid of light in the west after true darkness falls. This light can be noticeable and easy to see from latitudes like those in the southern U.S. I’ve seen it many times from the latitude of southern Texas, sometimes ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 7, 2010: Scorpion’s

Earthsky Tonight, February 7, 2010: Scorpion’s stinger stars an early harbinger of spring

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org Will you see the constellation Scorpius the Scorpion’s stinger stars below the waning crescent moon in the cold dawn tomorrow? You’ll need a clear, unobstructed view to the southeast to spot the stinger stars – Shaula and Lesath – flickering by the horizon. If you can’t spot these stars tomorrow, try again later this month. The stars at the end of the Scorpion’s tail are also known as the Cat’s ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 6, 2010 Moon and star

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org If you’re an early riser, you can see the waning crescent moon next to the star Antares during the dawn and predawn hours on Sunday, February 7. Look in the south to southeast sky for this shining couple an hour or so before sunrise. Antares is the brightest star in the constellation Scorpius the Scorpion. In our northern hemisphere, Antares is considered a summertime star, because it’s during the summer months that ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 5, 2010 Bright Mars and

Earthsky Tonight, February 5, 2010 Bright Mars and Beehive star cluster in same binocular field

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org If you’ve never seen the planet Mars – or haven’t seen it recently – now is the time to look. This reddish world – the world most like Earth in our solar system – shines more brilliantly this February than it will for the next several years. What’s more, Mars sits right in front of the constellation Cancer the Crab now. It shines only 3 degrees from a beautiful star cluster in the direction of ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 4, 2010: Blue-white Rigel

Earthsky Tonight, February 4, 2010: Blue-white Rigel is at the foot of Orion

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org The three sparkling blue-white stars of Orion’s Belt are easy to spot. As viewed from this hemisphere, this compact line of stars can be found in the southern sky at nightfall. Look in the south to southwestern sky any evening around now. Chances are the pattern you’ll pick out Orion! You may note that Orion’s two brightest stars – Betelgeuse and Rigel – lodge at an equal distance above and below ... Full Story

Earthsky Tonight, February 3, 2010: Somber red

Earthsky Tonight, February 3, 2010: Somber red Betelgeuse shines in the shoulder of Orion

Courtesy of EarthSky A Clear Voice for Science www.EarthSky.org At nightfall and early evening, people at mid-northern latitudes see the famous Belt of Orion – three stars in a short, straight row – about halfway between the southern horizon and straight overhead. Later at night, you will find Orion in the southwest. Above Orion’s Belt, you will find one of the sky’s most famous stars, ruddy-hued Betelgeuse. Kids especially like Betelgeuse, because its name sounds so much ... Full Story

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