One black hole may be 4 million solar masses, about the same mass as our Milky Way’s central black hole. The other may be 150 million solar masses.
At mid-northern latitudes, Saturn lords over the evening sky all by himself all month long! Mercury is hiding in the evening twilight for the Northern Hemisphere. Meanwhile, at southerly latitudes, two planets are visible in the evening, as Mercury presents its finest evening apparition of the year. The other three visible planets – Venus, Mars and Jupiter – are in the east before sunrise, with Venus pointing the way to Mars and Jupiter appearing in mid-month in predawn twilight. Follow the links inside to learn more about September planets.
Years of data on storms and sea surface temps show a correlation between a warm North Atlantic Ocean – more destructive hurricanes – and a fire-prone Amazon.
No photo in our social media last week had had as much positive feedback as this one, which Jeff Berkes posted at EarthSky Facebook. He wrote:
I still can not believe that I had the opportunity to witness a view as heavenly as this.
Neptune comes closest to Earth today – on August 31, 2015 – and reaches opposition less than a day later, on September 1. By closest, we don’t mean close. Neptune lodges in the outskirts of our solar system. At opposition, this giant world lies 29 times farther away from Earth than Earth lies from the sun.
Interested in astronomy, but not sure where to begin? Seek out your local astronomy club, a roomful of willing and able amateur astronomers, whose telescopes may offer your first glimpse of the cosmos. The Astronomical League, an umbrella organization of 240 amateur astronomy clubs and societies in the U.S., helps us create and maintain the list of events on this page.
NASA’s Terra satellite just released this August 29 image of Hurricanes Kilo, Ignacio, and Jimena, all Category Four Hurricanes. According to the Weather Channel:
This is the first recorded occurrence of three Category 4 hurricanes in the central and eastern Pacific basins at the same time. In addition, it’s also the first time with three major hurricanes (Category 3 or stronger) in those basins simultaneously, according to hurricane specialist Eric Blake of the National Hurricane Center.
New Horizons will perform four maneuvers in October and November to veer toward 2014 MU69 – nicknamed PT1 (for Potential Target 1) – aiming for a January 1, 2019 encounter.
The moon reaches perigee – nearest point to Earth in its orbit – on August 30, 2015 at 15:24 UTC. This perigee comes less than one day after the moon reached the crest of its full phase on August 29 at 18:35 UTC.
Supermoon weekend! The full moon of August 29, 2015 will be the first of this year’s three full supermoons. It’s a full moon near perigee, or near its closest point to Earth for the month. Like it or not, modern skylore dictates that these sorts of moons are called supermoons.