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Astronomy Essentials

December solstice
Blogs | Tonight | Dec 15, 2015

Everything you need to know: December solstice 2015

December solstice 2015 is coming on December 21 or 22 (depends on your timezone). Celebration time!

Tonight | Dec 12, 2015

EarthSky’s top 10 tips for meteor-watchers

How to watch a meteor shower. Tips for beginners.

Geminid meteors radiate from near star Castor in Gemini.
Blogs | Tonight | Dec 09, 2015

Everything you need to know: Geminid meteor shower

Peak night for the Geminids in 2015 is December 13 (morning of December 14). Best around 2 a.m. The meteors are already flying!

Photo by John Foster, Oregon Parks and Rec
Science Wire | Dec 05, 2015

Astronomy events, star parties, festivals, workshops

Plan some astronomy fun for the coming year.

Science Wire | Dec 03, 2015

Lengths of the lunar months in 2016

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.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons, Paul Stansifer
Science Wire | Nov 27, 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.

Regulus, the brightest star in the constellation Leo the Lion, dots a backwards question mark of stars known as the Sickle. If you trace all the Leonid meteors backward, they appear to radiate from this area of the sky. This year, in 2015, the planet Jupiter shines in eastern Leo, not far from the Lion's Tail.
Tonight | Nov 17, 2015

Everything you need to know: Leonid meteor shower

Here are all the details you need for 2015’s Leonid meteor shower, peaking on the morning of November 18.

View larger. | Taurid fireball caught by Eliot Herman in Tucson at 3:38 a.m. on November 1, 2015.  Thank you, Elliot!
Science Wire | Nov 02, 2015

Watch for Taurid fireballs this week

We’ve been hearing reports of Taurid fireballs! It’s time to start watching for them. Details on the South Taurid shower, and when to watch.

Binoculars are the perfect stargazing tool
Science Wire | Oct 31, 2015

Top 6 tips for using ordinary binoculars for stargazing

If you’re a beginning stargazer or a veteran of thousands of starlit nights, binoculars can be your best friend. Here’s how to get started.

Photo via Kurt Magoon on Flickr
Science Wire | Oct 30, 2015

Halloween derived from ancient Celtic cross-quarter day

Yes, Halloween is an astronomical holiday.