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Deborah Byrd

What is a waxing crescent moon?

Many people report seeing earthshine on a waxing crescent moon. That’s when the darkened portion of the crescent glows dimly with light reflected from Earth.

See it! Venus as a crescent

The planet Venus is heading toward inferior conjunction – when it goes between us and the sun – on October 26. For some weeks now, we’ve been receiving photos of Venus as a crescent world.

Whale songs evolve, but calls persist for generations

Humpback whales have ever-changing and evolving songs. But a new study of whales in Alaska shows their repertoire of calls – including growls, trumpets, and ahoogas – remains more stable. Why?

Watch 3 whales dive, then leap

Whale watchers on a cruise out of Nova Scotia got a thrill when they saw 3 whales breach the surface, one after the other. “We did not drive them,” the cruise director commented.

All you need to know: Zodiacal light

The zodiacal light is an eerie light extending up from the horizon before true dawn begins. Southern Hemisphere? Look after sunset!

Meet Proxima Centauri, closest star to sun

The star Proxima Centauri, one of 3 stars in the Alpha Centauri system, is our sun’s nearest known neighbor at 4.2 light-years away.

Michael headed for landfall in Florida

The early morning update on Wednesday, October 10, shows Michael has strengthened more than expected to a Category 4 hurricane. The storm is due to make landfall on the north Florida coast today.

Hubble is in safe mode. Science operations suspended

The Hubble Space Telescope has been in safe mode since last Friday evening, following the failure of one of the gyros that helps stabilize it. NASA is analyzing the problem and hopes to resume operations soon.

See it! SpaceX night launch and landing

Night launches are always fun, and this the October 7 launch by SpaceX – from Vandenberg Air Force Base, north of Los Angeles, California – generated more than its fair shares of awesome images.

All you need to know: Draconids in 2018

Experts are now saying there probably won’t be a meteor storm this evening. But what if they were wrong and you missed it?