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Astronomy Essentials

Moon shot with blue filter via our friend Jv Noriega
Science Wire | Aug 24, 2015

When is the next Blue Moon?

The next Blue Moon will be on May 21, 2016. It’s a seasonal Blue Moon, the third of four full moons between the March equinox and the June solstice of 2016.

Zodiacal light
Science Wire | Aug 24, 2015

Everything you need to know: zodiacal light or false dawn

The zodiacal light is an eerie light extending up from the horizon. No matter where you are on Earth, springtime or autumn is the best time to see it.

Hoax image via social media.
Blogs | Tonight | Aug 15, 2015

No double moon in 2015, or ever

Will Mars and the moon will appear the same size at some point in 2015? Gosh, no. What’s really amazing is the staying power of this 12-year-old hoax.

Photo Credit:  A. Dupree, R. Gilliland, NASA
Science Wire | Aug 12, 2015

How far is Betelgeuse?

Finding star distances isn’t easy. Here’s how it’s done, and why astronomers recently modified the distance estimate to the famous star Betelgeuse.

Photo by Jack Fusco
Tonight | Aug 02, 2015

Everything you need to know: Perseid meteor shower

In N. Hemisphere, August’s Perseid meteor shower ranks as a favorite. You can see these meteors from S. Hemisphere, too. 2015 is a great year for this shower!

Skywatcher, by Predrag Agatonovic.
Tonight | Aug 02, 2015

August 2015 guide to the five visible planets

Mercury, Venus, Mars and Jupiter are all close to morning or evening twilight glare in August, 2015. Meanwhile, Saturn is up from nightfall until late night.

Comet_holmes_and_meteor
Tonight | Jul 24, 2015

Everything you need to know: Delta Aquarid meteor shower

Delta Aquarid meteor shower peaks around now, under the light of the almost-full moon. But don’t worry. Delta Aquarids will still be flying when the Perseids peak in August.

aquarius_black
Tonight | Jul 24, 2015

Star Skat is near radiant for Delta Aquarid meteors

How to spot it, plus an explanation of why meteors in annual showers have radiant points.

Photo by Justin Ng
Tonight | Jul 23, 2015

EarthSky’s meteor shower guide for 2015

With little or no moon to ruin the show, this is a great year for watching the Perseid meteor shower. It’ll peak on the mornings of August 11, 12 and 13.

Self-portrait by Dan Bush
Science Wire | Jul 06, 2015

EarthSky’s top 10 tips for super stargazers

Here are 10 simple tips that can help you connect with the night sky, and have fun.

Image via Wikipedia. Sizes of planets are to scale but not the distances. Click here for relative distances.
Science Wire | Jun 30, 2015

When will all five visible planets appear simultaneously?

All five visible planets will appear together in the morning sky early next year – from about January 20 to February 20, 2016. That hasn’t happened since 2005.

sunset_white_rock_lake_Dallas_Lucy_Bee
Tonight | Jun 20, 2015

Everything you need to know: June solstice 2015

It’s that beautiful time of year again in the N. Hemisphere, when the June solstice – your signal to celebrate summer – is upon us.

ocean-currents-perpetual-cp
Science Wire | Jun 08, 2015

Video: Perpetual ocean

In honor of World Ocean Day on June 8, a beautiful video visualization of ocean currents around the world.

saturn_rings_300
Tonight | May 21, 2015

Give me five minutes and I’ll give you Saturn in 2015

Best time to see Saturn in 2015 is here! Instructions for finding this beautiful golden planet … here.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons, Paul Stansifer
Science Wire | May 08, 2015

How far is a light-year?

Light is the fastest-moving stuff in the universe. It travels at an incredible 300,000 kilometers (186,000 miles) per second. So, in a year, light travels far.

2013 Eta Aquarids.  Composite image by Colin Legg.
Tonight | May 05, 2015

Everything you need to know: Eta Aquarid meteor shower

Eta Aquarid going on now. Good for both the northern tropics and Southern Hemisphere. How to watch, history, radiant point, here.

meteor_shower_300
Tonight | Apr 19, 2015

EarthSky’s top 10 tips for meteor-watchers

You might see a lot or you might not see many, but if you stay in the house, you won’t see any.

Lyrids and others via NASA/MSFC/D. Moser
Tonight | Apr 18, 2015

Everything you need to know: Lyrid meteor shower

Awesome Lyrid prospects this year! You might see 10 to 20 meteors per hour at the peak on the mornings of April 22åç and 23, with the nod going to April 23.

Moon eclipse - October 2014 - by John W. Johnson.
FAQs | Mar 31, 2015

How to watch a total eclipse of the moon

The April 4, 2015 total lunar eclipse comes in the morning for North America, and in the evening for Eastern Asia, Indonesia, New Zealand and Australia. Here’s what to look for.

Oct 23, 2014 partial solar eclipse by Mikael Linder
Blogs | Mar 21, 2015

Dates of lunar and solar eclipses in 2015 and 2016

Upcoming eclipses.

solar-eclipse-annular-cp
Blogs | Mar 18, 2015

Is it possible to have three eclipses in one month?

Three eclipses in one calendar month are rare. Three eclipses in one lunar month are more common. From 2000-2050, it happens 14 times.