Sunday, September 9, 2012

Weekly SkyWatcher's Forecast: September 10-16, 2012

Greetings, fellow SkyWatchers! With very little Moon to contend with this week, it will be a great time to take on some challenging studies like the Helix Nebula, Saturn Nebula, Stephen's Quintet and more. It's time to get out your big telescope and head for some dark skies... Because this week isn't for the beginner! Whenever you're ready, I'll see you out back...

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Eye Candy: ALMA Studies A Sweet Star!

Are you ready to take one sweet trip to the eye-candy shop? That's just what the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) did when a team of astronomers discovered simple sugar molecules in the gas surrounding a young star. Similar to our Sun, the star cataloged as IRAS 16293-2422 and its sweet envelope herald the fact that the building blocks of life can be present when a solar system forms.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Weekly SkyWatcher's Forecast: September 3-9, 2012

Greetings, fellow SkyWatchers! With the change in seasons becoming quickly apparent, it's time to put some early hours dark skies to good use and enjoy some favorite nebulae. If you've enjoyed the Mars-mania, then you'll also enjoy the return of Mars in the pre-dawn hours. Speaking of early mornings, be sure to watch as the Moon and Jupiter head for a splendid conjunction this coming Saturday. When you're ready, grab your binoculars and set up your telescopes... It's time to dance!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Let's Send Neil Back To The Moon

As a native-born and life-long resident of Ohio, I have lived in the shadow of Neil Armstrong all my life. I visit Wapokenta every few years for two simple reasons - I love the Armstrong Museum and I feel a need to pass that heritage on to children, grandchildren and visiting friends. Of course, I was crushed when I read of his death. I would have given anything to have had Armstrong's autograph on my original Apollo landing newspapers, or even just to have seen the man. He was a humble hero... and this is the quality that I loved most about him. However, Neil Armstrong and his quiet ways didn't just impact my life. He touched us all.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Blue Moon This Week

When you hear someone say “Once in a Blue Moon” you know what they mean. They’re usually talking about something rare, silly, and even absurd. After all, when was the last time you saw the Moon turn blue? Well, rare or not, we’re having one this week, and according to astronomer David Reneke writer and publicist for Australasian Science magazine, a Blue Moon is slated for the last day of this month, Friday, August 31.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Weekly SkyWatcher's Forecast: August 27-September 2, 2012

Greetings, fellow SkyWatchers! If you only get your telescope or binoculars out once in a Blue Moon, then get them out this week when a Blue Moon actually happens! However, if you can't wait, then let's explore some great lunar features, bright star clusters and great double stars. When you're ready to learn some history, mystery and more, then just step on inside...

Friday, August 24, 2012

Star Consumes Its Planet

So far we've discovered a huge amount of planets orbiting a variety of stars, but this is the first time astronomers have uncovered evidence of a star devouring one of its offspring. When a planet comes up "missing", it's time to take a closer look at its parent star - in this case, a red giant older than the Sun and about eleven times bigger.