EarthSky
Crew Dragon spacecraft docked with ISS.

SpaceX Crew Dragon is docked with ISS

History was made again Sunday, with the successful docking of SpaceX Crew Dragon with the International Space Station. Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley are aboard. There are more activities to come, which you can watch online. Links here.

AIM spots season’s 1st Arctic noctilucent clouds

NASA’s AIM spacecraft spotted wisps of the 2020 season’s 1st noctilucent, or night-shining, clouds over the Arctic on May 17.

A wavering line of dots, in 2 colors.

ALMA spots the twinkling heart of our Milky Way

Astronomers used the ALMA telescope in Chile to observe irregular flickers in millimeter-waves from the center of our Milky Way galaxy: the twinkling heart of the galaxy.

Deneb, tail of Cygnus the Swan

Deneb marks the Tail of Cynus the Swan. At the same time, it marks the head of a crosslike pattern – an asterism – known as the Northern Cross.

Seen from space: Covid-19 and the environment

Satellites see environmental changes during the coronavirus lockdown, including reduced pollution.

Satellite data show 30% drop in air pollution over northeast U.S.

Satellite data show drop in air pollution over the major metropolitan areas of the U. S. Northeast.

Use Big Dipper to find North Star.

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.

Sky chart of the Big Dipper, Arcturus and Spica

Follow the arc to Arcturus, drive a spike to Spica

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

April 3 is John Burroughs’ birthday

John Burroughs – born in 1837 – was one of the 1st nature writers. He said: “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.”

Side view of a large diamond.

April’s birthstone is the diamond

Happy birthday, April babies! Your birthstone, the diamond, is the rich cousin of graphite.