Deborah Byrd

Earth farthest from the sun on July 4

Earth is farthest from the sun for all of 2019 on July 4. Astronomers call this point in our orbit “aphelion.”

July 2 solar eclipse from La Serena, Chile

EarthSky friend Eliot Herman traveled to Chile to capture the July 2, 2019, total solar eclipse in all its glory.

An earthly dish-type radio telescope aimed upward toward fast radio burst's home galaxy.

Astronomers pinpoint source of fast radio burst

“This is the big breakthrough that the field has been waiting for since astronomers discovered fast radio bursts in 2007,” one team member said.

July guide to the bright planets

July 2019 is Saturn’s month. Its opposition is July 9. Both Saturn and Jupiter appear in the southeast at nightfall and light up the sky most of the night. Mercury and Mars sit low in the west at sunset in early July and quickly follow the sun below the horizon. Venus, east at dawn, succumbs to the glare of sunrise.

NASA has a plan to knock an asteroid off course

DART stands for Double Asteroid Redirection Test. The DART mission is planned for launch in 2021. It’ll visit a double asteroid – Didymos and its tiny moon – and crash into the moon in an attempt to change its orbit.

Amazing June for noctilucent clouds

For the northern part of Earth, the season for seeing noctilucent clouds – clouds that shine at night – typically begins in June. This June has been particularly fine for seeing these electric-blue clouds. Photos and video here.

Viewing Saturn’s rings soon? Read me 1st

The best time of 2019 for seeing Saturn’s glorious rings is upon us. You’ve seen the photos, but maybe you want to see the rings with your own eyes? Here are a few things to think about.

See the Dragon’s Eyes on summer evenings

Look in the northeast on these June evenings, near the star Vega. You’ll see Rastaban and Eltanin, the eyes of Draco the Dragon.

It’s twilight time: 15 favorite photos

“Love prefers twilight to daylight”
– Oliver Wendell Holmes

Best photos of the Mercury-Mars conjunction

It was the closest conjunction of 2 planets in 2019, between Mercury and Mars. It happened low in the evening twilight – and was best seen from Earth’s Southern Hemisphere. Check out these photos from EarthSky Community members.