Scientists are still trying to figure out where Mars’ methane comes from. Now there’s a new mystery that might be connected: unusual fluctuations of oxygen in Mars’ atmosphere, detected by the Curiosity rover.
Astronomers have spotted a star – S5-HVs1 – speeding out of the Milky Way at around 4 million miles (more than 6 million km) per hour. They believe it’s being ejected from our galaxy after venturing too near the giant black hole at the Milky Way’s heart about 5 million years ago.
An artist's impression of the Milky Way's big black hole flinging the star from the galaxy's center. Image via James Josephides (Swinburne Astronomy Productions)
The moon reaches its last quarter phase on November 19, 2019, at 21:11 UTC. In the coming week, watch for it to rise in the east in the hours after midnight, waning thinner each morning.
View at EarthSky Community Photos
| Dr Ski in Valencia, Philippines caught the last quarter moon shortly after it rose around midnight on the morning of September 22, 2019. This moon phase is perfect for helping you envision the location of the sun ... below your feet. Thanks, Dr Ski!
2019’s Leonid meteor shower is expected to peak on the morning of November 18, though under the light of a waning gibbous moon. Charts, tips and details here.
For 2019's Leonid meteor shower, perhaps the biggest factor is the moon. It's in a waning gibbous phase, still very large and bright and in the sky between midnight and dawn when the most meteors will be falling. This chart from Guy Ottewell illustrates Earth's direction of travel through space at that time, with the Leonids' entry point to our atmosphere, and the direction to the moon, marked. You can see they are close together. Read Guy Ottewell's article about the 2019 Leonids
Observatories are great places to view and photograph the night sky. Tips from an astrophotographer’s trip to the Very Large Array in New Mexico – to help you plan your next astrophotography adventure – plus awesome photos.
Image via Derek Demeter (NRAO/AUI/NSF).
Click in to learn how to watch 2 International Space Station astronauts perform the 1st in a series of spacewalks NASA is calling “the most complex in a decade.”
This picture, taken by NASA astronaut Ron Garan during a spacewalk on July 12, 2011, shows the International Space Station with space shuttle Atlantis docked at the edge of the frame on the far right and a Russian Soyuz spacecraft docked to Pirs, below the sun. In the foreground is the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) experiment installed during the STS-134 mission. AMS is a state-of-the-art particle physics detector designed to use the unique environment of space to advance knowledge of the universe and lead to the understanding of the universe's origin by searching for antimatter and dark matter, and measuring cosmic rays.
Image via NASA/Ron Garan.
The Orion Nebula is a place where new stars are being born. It can be glimpsed with the eye alone … and is even more noticeable with binoculars. How to find it in your sky tonight. Plus … the science of this star factory in space.
captured this image in southern Sweden on January 2, 2017. You can recognize the constellation Orion by his 3 Belt stars, 3 stars in a short, straight row. The Orion Nebula is that red fuzzy region in Orion's Sword, hanging from the Belt.
From ESA’s Proba-2 satellite, images of the sun in January or February of each year from 2010 to 2019. This mosaic neatly shows the variability in the solar atmosphere in beautiful detail.
View larger. | https://en.es-static.us/upl/2019/11/Ten_Suns_for_10_years.png image via ESA/Royal Observatory of Belgium
The distant Kuiper Belt object formerly known as 2014 MU69 – later known as Ultima Thule – has been renamed again. Its new name is Arrokoth.
Here's Ultima Thule, a Kuiper Belt Object passed on January 1, 2019 by the New Horizons spacecraft. It's roughly 19 miles (30 km) long, or about 1/60th the diameter of Pluto. Image via NASA/ Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/ Southwest Research Institute/ Spaceflight Insider