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This Week's Amazing Sky | Almanac.com

This Week's Amazing Sky

October 30, 2019
This week’s crescent Moon is extra special. On Halloween night, October 31, see the brightest “star” next to the Moon? That’s Jupiter! Then on November 1 and November 2, the Moon travels to Saturn for another planet meet-up. Here are Bob’s viewing tips. The crescent is the shape most associated with a celestial object. Sure, the full Moon is circular, but when we think of…
October 23, 2019
With this month’s discovery of 20 more moons on Saturn, let’s pause and consider the many marvelous moons of our solar system. Which is your favorite? 20 New Moons Found on Saturn As you may have heard: This month, 20 new moons were founded orbiting Saturn. So now it’s got 82 moons, beating out Jupiter’s 79.  And if you’re up…
September 26, 2019
As autumn begins, we have a few more weeks to look at the most amazing part of the night sky. Let us easily locate the most photogenic telescopic targets, the planets Jupiter and Saturn.  On the next clear evening, look around the sky as soon as darkness falls.  Jupiter These nights that’s as early as 7 P.M. and certainly by 7:30.  Just look rather low…
September 3, 2019
Want to experience the kind of cosmic panorama seen under the opening credits of Star Wars? You’re at the right place. During September nights, we are aimed toward the center of the Milky Way, and can view the full splendor of our home galaxy. When to View the Milky Way During September nights, the Milky Way Galaxy neatly splits the sky from north to south and passes directly…
August 9, 2019
This year, the great Perseid Meteor Shower (peaking August 12–13) will be marred by the sky-brightening mischief of a nearly full Moon. So we may as well amuse ourselves by making the Moon the scapegoat for other problems, too! Read on—plus, here’s a tip to boost your chances of seeing a “shooting star.” Moon Myths It’s not a weird idea to think that the Moon causes…
June 26, 2019
View a total solar eclipse LIVE from South America this July 2, 2019. Bob Berman is traveling to observatories in Chile to report on the eclipse. But you don’t have to live on the path of totality to watch what Bob calls the greatest celestial spectacle! Tune in Tuesday afternoon for live coverage. Learn more! The Greatest Spectacle Ever since 1974, I…
June 24, 2019
You can seriously damage your eyes by watching a solar eclipse without proper protection (NOT sunglasses!). Here is information on how to watch an eclipse safely and what kind of eye protection you need—from eclipse glasses to welder’s googles. First, if you are watching a “total solar eclipse,” do you realize that you can only see totality from a very limited area—the…
June 24, 2019
Both total solar eclipses AND partial solar eclipses require specialized eye protection. I’ve already written about eye safety, but it never hurts to provide more precaution. More people will see a partial solar eclipse as it’s rare to be on the path of totality.  However, it is never safe to look at a partial eclipse, or the partial phases of a total solar eclipse,…
June 18, 2019
In June 2019, the Moon pairs up with three planets, while planets meet other planets! Next up: Tonight, June 18, features a twilight conjunction of Mercury and Mars and, more visibly, a late-night conjunction of the Moon and bright Saturn! Mercury’s Best 2019 Apparition Mercury returns to the evening sky between June 3 and July 11. But you do need an unobstructed view…
June 12, 2019
Jupiter is at its closest to Earth today! This is your best chance of the year to see the biggest planet in our solar system at its very brightest. Even a set of 10x binoculars will be enough to see Jupiter’s four brightest Moons—Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. No telescope needed.  Jupiter’s Opposition Two days ago (June 10) was Jupiter…
May 14, 2019
The Full Flower Moon arrives this Saturday night, May 18. And while this one will be a very special full moon for a few reasons, which we’ll get to in a minute, it’s also an unusual Blue Moon. What does this all mean? Here’s everything you need to know. A Seasonal Blue Moon This year, May’s full moon—which the Almanac calls the “Full Flower Moon”—is also a “…
May 6, 2019
It sounds like a children’s book. But even we grown ups have to say goodbye to loved ones from time to time. On the night of May 7, the Moon and Mars pair up for a striking conjunction, and then we bid farewell to Mars and the winter stars. Here are viewing details. Moon and Mars Conjunction Just step out into the evening soon soon after nightfall on Tuesday, May 7 as the…