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Give me five minutes and I’ll give you Saturn in 2016

Saturn isn’t as bright as Mars, but it’s near Mars on the sky’s dome. It’ll soon be at its best for the year. Learn how to identify Saturn for the rest of 2016.

The red planet, as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. Image credit: Jim Bell (Cornell University), Justin Maki (JPL), and Mike Wolff (Space Sciences Institute) and NASA

Guide to Mars’ opposition on May 22

Earth flies between Mars and sun on May 22, bringing it closer than Mars has been in over a decade. How to find and enjoy Mars during 2016’s close opposition!

Comet Halley's position in May, 2016. The view is from the north side of the solar system, whereby the planets orbit the sun in a counterclockwise direction - but Halley's Comet orbits the sun clockwise. Click here for Comet Halley's present position, or if you'd like, change the date to view its position in any chosen year.

Comet Halley, parent of 2 meteor showers

The Eta Aquarid meteor shower was spawned by the famous Comet Halley. But Halley spawned another meteor shower, too.

Geminid meteor in 2012 by Henry Shaw.

Learn to shoot photos of meteors

Want to try to capture a meteor on film? The first step is planning. The next step is to gather your equipment. Then on to the capture process itself.

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Shortest lunar month of 2016 starts May 6

Although the lunar month has a mean period of 29 days 12 hours and 44 minutes, the actual length varies throughout the year. Lengths of lunar months in 2016.

Full moon photo by EarthSky community member Fernando Alvarenga in San Salvador.

Why does the moon seem to follow you?

You, or your kids, might notice this. When you’re moving in a car, earthly objects get left behind, but the moon seems to follow. Why?

View larger. | As January, 2016, opens, there are four planets in the predawn sky.  Ben Zavala caught them on January 4, 2015.  Thanks, Ben!

Astronomical events in 2016

A month by month listing of major moon phases, conjunctions, oppositions, meteor showers and other important dates, from astronomer Fred Espenak.

Eta Aquarius in 2013 by Colin Legg

Everything you need to know: Eta Aquarid meteor shower

In 2016, Eta Aquarid meteor shower peaks on mornings of May 5 and 6. How to watch, history, radiant point, what part of Earth is favored, here.

Montauk Point lighthouse. Photo: Neeti Kumthekar

How can I capture star trails?

As Earth spins under the sky, the stars appear to move. When a camera captures that movement, that’s called a star trail. Plus … an astrophotographer explains how he does it.

Lyrids and others via NASA/MSFC/D. Moser

Everything you need to know: Lyrid meteor shower

Full moon is out all night at the peak of this year’s Lyrid meteor shower. Best time to watch before dawn on April 22, 2016, but … will you see any meteors?