Fastest sunsets happen near equinoxes

We’re talking about the amount of time needed for the body of the sun to sink below the horizon. It’s true. The sun actually sets faster around the time of an equinox.

Are day and night equal at the equinox?

Equinox means “equal night.” And you might hear that day and night are equal at the equinoxes. Yet Earth’s air and our sun conspire to give us more day than night at an equinox.

March equinox: All you need to know

The March 20, 2019, equinox is an event that happens on our sky’s dome and a seasonal marker in Earth’s orbit around the sun.

What is earthshine?

In the coming evenings, you might glimpse a pale glow on the unlit part of the crescent moon in the west after sunset. It’s called earthshine.

March guide to the bright planets

In early March, both Mercury and Mars shine in the west after sunset. Venus, Jupiter and Saturn shine before sunrise.

Chart showing Mercury and Mars in the west after sunset.

Now is the time to see Mercury

For Northern Hemisphere skywatchers, it’s the best evening apparition of Mercury in 2019. Now is the best time to look.

Line drawing of SpringTriangle and Sickle

Look for the Spring Triangle

It’s still winter in the Northern Hemisphere. As the cold days slowly get longer, a sure sign of spring is already in our skies.

Canopus: Sky’s 2nd-brightest star

Canopus is the 2nd-brightest star in the sky, and it’s easy to spot on February evenings, if …

Full moon at perigee side by side with crescent moon at apogee

See it! Photos of 2019’s biggest supermoon

A selection of photos of the February 18 and 19 full moon – biggest and brightest supermoon of 2019 – from the EarthSky Community.

Florescent green aurora. Sky criss-crossed with wires and telephone poles.

Watch: Aurora borealis over HAARP

Never-before-seen footage of night skies over the HAARP antenna array in remote northern Alaska.

The green glow of northern lights on the horizon with a bright meteor streaking above.

Time to watch for spring fireballs

The rate of fireballs – or bright meteors – has been observed to go up in the Northern Hemisphere by as much as 30% from February through April. Will it this year?

Fast comet closest to Earth this week

Fast-moving comet C/2018 Y1 (Iwamoto) will pass closest to us – 28 million miles away – on February 12. Charts and more here.

Florescent green waves on a dark sky

Stargazing destinations: Yellowknife

This 3rd episode of an ongoing stargazing video series – called Chasing Darkness – is from Yellowknife, Canada. It features the magnificent northern lights.

Sirius is Dog Star and brightest star

February evenings are a great time to see Sirius. It’s hard to miss the brightest star in Earth’s sky. More about the Dog Star, plus how to spot it

Zodiacal light: All you need to know

The zodiacal light is an eerie light extending up from the horizon. This is a good time of year to see it in the evening, from the Northern Hemisphere. Southern Hemisphere, look before dawn!

Groundhog Day is an astronomy holiday

Groundhog Day is tied to the movement of Earth around the sun. Falling approximately midway between a solstice and an equinox, it’s the year’s 1st cross-quarter day.

A person in a red jacket photographing the night sky. Milky Way stars reflecting in desert's dry lake bed.

Stargazing destinations: Oregon

Here’s the 2nd video in the Chasing Darkness series, a stargazing destination guide. This episode: Skies over Oregon’s Cascade Mountains and Alvord Desert.

Chart showing the early morning sky in late January and early February 2019.

The moon at mid-arch from full to new

Astronomer Guy Ottewell shares insights and charts related to the current moon phase.

Do we all see the same moon phase?

One Earth. One sky. One moon phase (more or less) from all of Earth. So why (and how) does the moon look different from different parts of Earth?

Close-up of a section of the moon, with arrow pointing to meteorite flash

A meteorite strike during the moon eclipse!

Check it out. You can see the flash of a meteorite that struck the moon during Sunday night’s total eclipse. Photos and video here.