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Posts by Deborah Byrd

Tonight | Aug 03, 2015

Every visible star is within Milky Way

If you look in a dark country sky, you’ll easily spot the starlit band of our huge, flat Milky Way galaxy. Every star in our night sky lies inside this galaxy.

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.

Darla Young in Arkansas said she was ... 
"out photographing the Blue Moon and captured myself a meteor ... A Perseid perhaps?"
Today's Image | Aug 02, 2015

It’s meteor season!

Meteor season 2015 is underway, with several showers doing on now and the Perseids gearing up for a great show in a moon-free sky in mid-August. We’ll be posting your photos on this page throughout the coming month.

View larger. | Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with color data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced color global view of Pluto. (The lower right edge of Pluto in this view currently lacks high-resolution color coverage.) The images, taken when the spacecraft was 280,000 miles (450,000 km) away, show features as small as 1.4 miles (2.2 km). Image via NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI.
Science Wire | Aug 01, 2015

First maps of Charon and Pluto

Many features on Charon informally named from science fiction, particularly Star Trek and Star Wars. Lord of the Rings, Stanley Kubrick also honored.

Today's Image | Jul 30, 2015

Comet Tempel 1 and Deep Impact

An artist’s concept – and a real photo – from the first-ever impact from an earthly space probe onto the surface of a comet.

View larger. | Artist conception of an aurora over the polar region of a brown dwarf. Image via Chuck Carter and Gregg Hallinan, Caltech.
Science Wire | Jul 29, 2015

Found! First aurora beyond solar system

Found on a brown dwarf some 18 light-years away, this aurora is 10,000 times more powerful than any astronomers have witnessed before.

View larger. | Visit Fotograf Goran Strand on Facebook.
Today's Image | Jul 29, 2015

Solar halo over Sweden

Halos are a sign of high thin cirrus clouds drifting high above our heads. The clouds contain millions of tiny ice crystals, which both refract (split) and also reflect sunlight.

In late July and early August, watch for the three medium-bright "Belt" stars of Orion the Hunter to ascend over your eastern horizon shortly before dawn.
Tonight | Jul 29, 2015

Orion the Hunter: Ghost of summer dawn

Orion the Hunter – ghost of the shimmering summer dawn – returns to the eastern predawn sky each year in late summer. Watch for it in late July and early August!

Science Wire | Jul 28, 2015

New names and insights about Ceres

The Dawn spacecraft is now moving to its third mapping orbit. Nothing new on the bright spots yet, but the crater that contains them has a new name: Occator.

View interactive map. | July 28, 2015 earthquake in Indonesia.
Science Wire | Jul 28, 2015

Powerful 7.0-magnitude earthquake rocks Indonesia

It struck in Indonesia early today. One person dead. Buildings damaged. No tsunami warning issued. This quake follows a strong earthquake in Alaska yesterday.