So, recently a friend mentioned something about a polar vortex, and it was in the middle of an e-mail exchange that dealt significantly with hexagons. I really don’t pay too much attention to news, TV, or weather reports, and did not know at all that this term applied to the notorious weather we’re having [...]
So, what is it?
I’ve had this experiment in the back of my head for a while now, and tried it last night. What you’re seeing here is Sirius, otherwise known as the Dog Star or the Dog’s Nose, and the brightest star in the sky. As a quick aside, for some reason many [...]
For some unknown reason, I have a desire to capture sunrise on Tycho, the prominent rayed crater on the moon. Since it’s unlikely I’ll be able to afford a trip there anytime soon, I’ve been pursuing this remotely, but what it means is capturing a particular phase of the moon at just the right [...]
On Friday, September 6th, at 11:27 PM EDT, NASA will be launching the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) satellite from the Wallops Island launch facility on the Virginia peninsula. Viewers on the east coast of the US may be able to see it as it heads towards lunar orbit, since night launches [...]
I feel slightly guilty about appending an ‘astronomy’ tag to this, because it’s going to seem not just distantly-related, but wholly out of place to some reading. Yet, there really is a legitimate bearing, as I hope to demonstrate. So let’s take a brief look at the history of extra-terrestrial encounters, because sometimes it [...]
“HDR” stands for “high dynamic range,” a photo editing technique used to combat the increased contrast that all standard photo methods are prone to – see a greater explanation here. Sometimes it’s used to produce unrealistic images with light levels that really can’t exist naturally, but other times it’s an effort to present more [...]
Yeah, it was a non-event, even in areas that had good visibility – mass media really can’t handle astronomical events very well, but much worse is the social-media-fueled rumor mill. “Mars will be so close it will appear to be the size of Jupiter in the sky!” yeah, yeah…
Now, a curiosity. The haze [...]
A few years back when I was still following the Bad Astronomy blog, Phil Plait posted an image of odd geological features on Mars, along with the current speculations as to how they had occurred – which were not quite fitting the visible details. Definitely read the post for the salient bits, [...]
Twenty-three years ago today, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low-earth orbit (meaning about 555 km, or 345 mi, above the surface of the Earth.) Since that time, it has produced perhaps the largest body of work of any single telescope, and certainly some of the most detailed. And just recently, NASA released [...]
Just a quick image from tonight, as Jupiter passed close to the moon. Or at least, from the given perspective of one position in the universe presently occupied by Earth. Jupiter has often been much closer to the moon, distance-wise, even when not visible in the sky at all.
This is admittedly both not [...]
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