Friday October 24th 2014
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Staff

Publisher and Editor - Judith Martin-Straw

Yo Jethro - Shelly Blaisdel

LOCALmotion - Jozelle Smith

Looking Up - Bob Eklund

Ruth's Truths - Ruth Morris

Looking Up by Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

The longest-lived robot ever sent to Mars came through its latest challenge in good health, reporting home on schedule after sheltering behind Mars from possible comet dust. NASA’s Mars Odyssey was out of communications with Earth, as planned, while conducting observations of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring on Sunday, Oct. 19, as the comet flew near Mars. The comet sped within about 88,000 [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

A partial eclipse of the sun will be visible across most of North America on Thursday, October 23, as the Moon partially obscures the Sun between 2:10 and 4:40 p.m. PDT. At eclipse maximum (3:29 p.m.) the Sun will be approximately half covered, as the Moon passes in front of it. Viewers should exercise extreme caution to avoid eye damage. NEVER look directly at the Sun except through [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

NASA’s Astrobiology Institute (NAI) announced that the SETI Institute has been selected as a new member of the NAI for a 5-year research program, “Changing Planetary Environments and the Fingerprints of Life.” Led by SETI’s planetary geologist and Senior Research Scientist Nathalie Cabrol, the team’s work will address key questions: How can we identify the signature of life not just [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Up to half of the water on Earth is likely older than the solar system itself, University of Michigan astronomers theorize. The researchers’ work, published in the current issue of Science, helps to settle a debate about just how far back in galactic history our planet and our solar system’s water formed. Were the molecules in comet ices and terrestrial oceans born with the system [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

What is a planet? For generations of kids the answer was easy. A big ball of rock or gas that orbited our Sun, and there were nine of them in our solar system. But then astronomers started finding more Pluto-sized objects orbiting beyond Neptune. Then they found Jupiter-sized objects circling distant stars, first by the handful and then by the hundreds. Suddenly the answer wasn’t so easy. Were [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover has reached the Red Planet’s Mount Sharp, a Mount-Rainier-size mountain at the center of the vast Gale Crater and the rover mission’s long-term prime destination. “Curiosity now will begin a new chapter from an already outstanding introduction to the world,” said Jim Green, director of NASA’s Planetary Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington. [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Imagine living on a planet that has two suns. One you orbit, and the other is a very bright, nearby neighbor looming large in your sky. With this “second sun” in the sky, nightfall might be a rare event, perhaps only coming seasonally to your planet. A new study suggests that this could be far more common than we realized. NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope has confirmed about 1,000 [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

The Impressionist movement of the late 19th century takes its name from French artist Claude Monet’s moody, dreamlike painting “Impression, Soleil Levant” (“Impression, Sunrise”). Now, Texas State University astronomer and physics professor Donald Olson has applied his distinctive brand of celestial sleuthing to Monet’s masterpiece, uncovering new details about the painting’s [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

NASA’s Pluto-bound New Horizons spacecraft has traversed the orbit of Neptune. It is due to make a close encounter with distant Pluto on July 14, 2015. The sophisticated piano-sized spacecraft, which launched in January 2006, reached Neptune’s orbit on Aug. 25, 2014, in a record eight years and eight months. New Horizons’ milestone matches precisely the 25th anniversary of the historic [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

The Whirlpool Galaxy Messier 51 (M51) is seen from a distance of approximately 30 million light-years. This galaxy appears almost face-on and displays a beautiful system of spiral arms. A European team of astronomers was able to observe M51 with the International LOFAR Telescope in the frequency range 115-175 MHz, just above the normal commercial FM radio frequency band of 88-108 MHz. The team [...]

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