Tuesday September 30th 2014
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Staff

Publisher and Editor - Judith Martin-Straw

The Skinny - Amy Brunell

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

Look low in the west-northwest after sunset in late May, and you can watch Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury pirouetting through the tightest gathering of three naked-eye planets that the world will see until 2026. “Here’s a beautiful chance to see three planets all together,” says Alan MacRobert, a senior editor at Sky & Telescope magazine. “Add the Earth under your feet, and you’re [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

The team operating NASA’s Curiosity rover on Mars has selected a second target rock for drilling and sampling. The rover will set course to the drilling location in coming days. This second drilling target, called “Cumberland,” lies about nine feet west of the rock where Curiosity’s drill first touched Martian stone in February. Curiosity took the first rock sample ever collected on [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

NASA and the UK Space Agency are jointly developing a spacecraft, named Sunjammer (after Arthur C. Clarke’s 1963 short story by that name), which will use a 13,000-square-foot solar sail (see photo) to propel itself nearly two million miles toward the sun. The sail will then help keep the spacecraft in a steady position. Sensitive instruments on board will provide scientist with an early [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has provided scientists the first close-up, visible-light views of a behemoth hurricane swirling around Saturn’s north pole. In high-resolution pictures and video, scientists could see that the hurricane’s eye is about 1,250 miles wide—20 times larger than the average hurricane eye on Earth. Thin, bright clouds at the outer edge of the hurricane are traveling [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Scientists eagerly await the arrival of a recently discovered, highly active comet that will skim 730,000 miles above the Sun’s surface on Nov. 28 and has the potential to be readily visible from Earth. The comet, C/2012 S1 (ISON), is highly unusual in that it comes to the inner solar system for the first time and will skirt around the Sun within less than two solar radii from its [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

This intriguing new picture from European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) shows the glowing green planetary nebula IC 1295 surrounding a dim and dying star located about 3,300 light-years away in the constellation of Scutum (the Shield). This is the most detailed picture of this object ever taken. Stars the size of the Sun end their lives as tiny, faint, and extremely dense [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

One of 35 meteorites of mysterious origin found in the Moroccan desert. This piece weighs 100 grams. The alphabet block to the right is a centimeter on a side. Early in 2012, someone in Southern Morocco picked up 35 greenish stones. Purchased by a dealer in Erfoud, Morocco, one of them was then resold to Stefan Ralew, a meteorite collector from Berlin. The dealer was demanding a high price, [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is scheduled to launch the asteroid explorer “Hayabusa2” on the H-IIA Launch Vehicle in 2014. The spacecraft will arrive at an asteroid in 2018 to investigate it for one and a half years—and to leave there a collection of messages from the general public—before returning to Earth in 2020. JAXA will record and load names, messages and [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Rising above the present location of NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity, higher than any mountain in the 48 contiguous states of the United States, Mount Sharp is featured in new imagery from the rover. A pair of mosaics assembled from dozens of telephoto images shows Mount Sharp in dramatic detail. This layered mound, also called Aeolis Mons, in the center of Gale Crater rises more than 3 miles [...]

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

Looking Up – Bob Eklund

A team of international scientists using the  W. M. Keck Observatory has made the most detailed examination yet of the atmosphere of a Jupiter-size planet beyond our solar system. According to lead author Quinn Konopacky, an astronomer with the Dunlap Institute for Astronomy & Astrophysics, University of Toronto, “We have been able to observe this planet in unprecedented detail because [...]

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