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EarthSky

How Pluto got its name

Eleven-year-old Venetia Burney suggested Pluto, a classical mythological god of the underworld. The name also honored Percival Lowell, whose early efforts led to Pluto’s discovery.

Traveling by air? Watch for a glory

People traveling in airplanes often see glories. The sun has to be behind your head. You’ll see the plane’s shadow cast on a cloud, surrounded by a halo of light.

Why rainbows are curved

A rainbow isn’t a flat 2-dimensional image on the dome of sky. It’s more like a mosaic, composed of many separate bits … in 3 dimensions.

Follow the arc to Arcturus, and drive a spike to Spica

If you only ever learn one star mnemonic, make it this one!

Top 10 things about brown recluse spiders

It’s their active season. Here are some things you might not know.

Use the Big Dipper to find the Little Dipper

Polaris – aka the North Star – marks the end of the Little Dipper’s handle. The 2 outer stars in the bowl of the Big Dipper always point to Polaris.

The colors of stars

A photographer compares the colors of the stars Rigel, Betelgeuse and Sirius.

Find Vincent van Gogh’s Big Dipper

Here’s an easy astronomy lesson, from a master in the art of loving nature.

Why beware the Ides of March?

The Ides of March are March 15. We in modern times probably wouldn’t know about them, if it weren’t for William Shakespeare.

Use Big Dipper to find Little Dipper

The Big Dipper is easy to recognize, but the Little Dipper … not so much. Here’s a tip that can help.