Enjoying EarthSky? Subscribe.

219,154 subscribers and counting ...

Via Wikimedia Commons

Seeing things that aren’t there

Seeing animals in clouds, or a face in the moon, are examples of pareidolia. Look here for photos to test your own ability to see things that aren’t there.

NASA astronaut Tim Kopra captured an image of the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft, on the company's eighth Commercial Resupply Services mission, from the Cupola Module of the International Space Station during Expedition 47 in April 2016. Image via NASA

Watch SpaceX Dragon depart ISS Friday

Live coverage Friday of cargo ship’s departure from International Space Station. Begins at 5:45 a.m. EDT (9:45 UTC).

The inhabitants of the moon (Vespertilio homo or men-bat).
Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Today in science: Great Moon Hoax

A series of 6 newspaper articles in 1835 about the discovery of life on the moon (including bat-men and unicorns), supposedly made by famous astronomer.

August 24, 2016 earthquake in Italy. Image via USGS.

Strong earthquakes rock Italy overnight

Dozens reported killed, and over 150 missing, in the earthquakes that shook Italy in the early morning of August 24. Searches ongoing.

Hoax image via social media.

No double moon in 2016, or ever

We thought we might get through this summer without the dumb hoax about Mars as big as a full moon rearing its head. But, no.

Gene Roddenberry with Enterprise in the background.
Credit: Letters of Note.

Today in science: Gene Roddenberry

Happy 95th birthday to writer and producer Gene Roddenberry, creator of Star Trek.

Image via NASA

Watch spacewalk live August 19

Two ISS astronauts will perform a spacewalk on Friday. NASA TV’s live coverage starts at 6:30 a.m. EDT (10:30 UTC) and lasts about eight hours.

An artist's re-creation of the first human migration to North America. Image via DEA Picture Library / Deagostini / Getty Images

How did humans first reach America?

A new study suggests that the first people to reach America travelled via the Pacific coast rather than through a corridor between two giant ice sheets.

Seventy six of 77 atmospheric scientists responding to a survey agree these are contrails, not "chemtrails."

Atmospheric scientists say ‘no chemtrails’

Is there a large-scale, secret program to spray chemicals into Earth’s atmosphere, resulting in “chemtrails?” Leading atmospheric scientists just say no.

Image via www.sciencealert.com

Physicists confirm a possible 5th force

“If true, it’s revolutionary,” said Jonathan Feng, professor of physics and astronomy at University of California, Irvine and lead author of the new study.

A plate of Enterobacter aerogenes showing the bulls-eye pattern of swarming underneath a stylized clock face. Image via Jiffin Paulose.

The circadian clock in your gut

Our internal circadian clock tells our body when to sleep, wake and eat. New research says that bacteria living in our gut also have their own circadian clocks.

Camp Century doubled as a top-secret site for testing the feasibility of deploying nuclear missiles from the Arctic during the Cold War.

Ice melt may release Cold War-era toxins

Formerly secret Camp Century in Greenland was abandoned beneath ice and snow. But the ice is melting, and biological, chemical and nuclear waste may be released as early as 2090.

Screen Shot 2016-08-03 at 9.19.03 AM

Today in science: 7 minutes of terror

To celebrate the 4-year anniversary of Curiosity rover’s arrival on Mars, here’s a video on the final 7 minutes of its chilling descent on August 5-6, 2012.

Image via Sarah2 / shutterstock / theconversation

Parakeet takeover ahead?

“Parakeets are Britain’s fastest growing bird population and are on a trajectory to global domination.”

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.

Artist's concept of Emirates Mars Mission

Emirates Mars Mission to launch in 2020

The Emirates Mars Mission – which carries the name Hope – will become the first-ever mission to the Red Planet by any Arab country.

rocket-body-reentry-7-27-2016-ian-norman

Spectacular rocket reentry over US West

Observers in the U.S. West saw a disintegrating meteor – a fireball, or extremely bright meteor – on July 27, 2016. It was the reentry of a Chinese rocket body.

A housing complex in Thailand with air conditioners. Image via Chaiwat Subprasom/Reuters

Air conditioning’s big global impact

Higher global temperatures combined with higher global incomes mean more air conditioners. But what do more air conditioners mean?

An experimental rocket test over Scandinavia in 2009, which triggered many UFO reports. Read more about this photo.

If it’s not a UFO, what is it?

Most Unidentified Flying Objects aren’t unidentified at all. Here’s a list of natural and human-made objects in the sky that people frequently mistake for UFOs.

eclipse2017-video-still

Moon shadow in 2017 eclipse

Fly along with Earth’s shadow in a video depicting the path of the August 21, 2017 total eclipse of the sun, first eclipse over the continental U.S. since 1979.