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Astronomy Essentials

Pluto, Charon, sun. Artist's concept via LPI
Tonight | Jul 04, 2014

Earth passes between sun and Pluto on July 4

Pluto’s 2014 opposition comes just one year before the New Horizons spacecraft will encounter this distance world and its moons.

sunset_white_rock_lake_Dallas_Lucy_Bee
Tonight | Jun 21, 2014

Everything you need to know: June solstice 2014

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

Moon shot with blue filter via our friend Jv Noriega
Tonight | Jun 14, 2014

When is the next Blue Moon?

Blue Moon can be second of two full moons in a month. Or it can be third of four full moons in a season. Next Blue Moon is the second full moon of July, 2015.

Photo Credit: jasonb42882
FAQs | Jun 06, 2014

Why is Mars sometimes bright and sometimes faint?

The brightness of Mars in our sky depends on where our two planets are in orbit around the sun.

Photographed and composed by Susan Jensen
Tonight | Jun 03, 2014

Find Summer Triangle ascending in the east on June evenings

The Summer Triangle consists of three bright stars in three constellations – Deneb in Cygnus the Swan, Vega in Lyra the Harp, and Altair in Aquila the Eagle.

2013 Eta Aquarids.  Composite image by Colin Legg.
Tonight | May 05, 2014

Everything you need to know: Eta Aquarid meteor shower

Eta Aquarids best before dawn May 5, 6, and 7. Good for both the northern tropics and Southern Hemisphere. How to watch, history, radiant point, here.

saturn_rings_300
Tonight | Apr 29, 2014

Give me five minutes and I’ll give you Saturn in 2014

Best time to see Saturn in 2014 is here! Instructions for finding this beautiful golden planet … here.

Photo credit: Oliver Floyd
Blogs | Photos | Apr 29, 2014

See it! Photos and video of partial solar eclipse of April 29

Check out these photos and video of the April 29 partial solar eclipse.

Total solar eclipse via Fred Espenak
Tonight | Apr 28, 2014

When is the next total solar eclipse in the U.S.?

The next total solar eclipse visible from the mainland U.S. will be on August 21, 2017.

Lyrids and others via NASA/MSFC/D. Moser
Tonight | Apr 21, 2014

Everything you need to know: Lyrid meteor shower

In 2014, Lyrid meteor shower peaks on Earth Day morning, April 22. Bright moon interferes, but the Lyrids are bright, too, and can withstand some moonlight.