Tuesday, October 16, 2018

King of the System


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a view of Jupiter (and moons) courtesy of the Hubble Space Telescope (knock on astronomical wood that it may long continue!).

Monday, October 15, 2018

Great Bird


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day brings us a colorful image of Messier 16, the Eagle Nebula (found in the constellation of Serpens).

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Forty-Two


Long-time readers will know that The Great Nebula in Orion is one of my all-time favorite sights in the sky. So, I take particular pleasure whenever the Astronomy Picture of the Day brings us a new view of a familiar, yet unfamiliar, friend.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Launch to Orbit


Today's Astronomy  Picture  of the Day shows a view from a beach walk: the recent launch of a Falcon 9 from Vandenburg Air Force Base is caught by a dog (and a couple of human types).

Friday, October 12, 2018

Transient


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the exhaust cloud from this week's launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9. Amazing sight in the night sky!

Thursday, October 11, 2018

I Will Never Not Be Astounded


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is an image that has become, to many, routine. SpaceX is shown here, in a timelapse image, launching and recovering the first stage of a Falcon 9. I will never not be astounded to see these images and view footage of launches (especially from the actual vehicle involved).

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

It's a Gas Gas Gas

Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a short video that shows the odd behavior of a solar prominence as observed by the Solar Dynamic Observatory vehicle. Dig around for more video: prominences seem to flow up, flow down, appear from nowhere and shoot sideways or down, loop around and more. What an odd thing our Quiet Sun is!

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Monday, October 8, 2018

Between the Nebula


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows an interloper, Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner passing between the Rosette Nebula and the Cone Nebula.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Pond Life


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a frog's-eye view of the night sky over a pond in Kiruna, Sweden. Nice observatory! Nice auroral activity!

Friday, October 5, 2018

Heading to Conjunction


That's no Moon, that's a planet! Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day captures a crescent Venus as it moves ever closer to conjunction and an eventual shift from being the "Evening Star" to being the "Morning Star".

Thursday, October 4, 2018

The Sleeping Rover


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is brought to us by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and shows the MER Opportunity. Opportunity was caught in the recent globe-girdling dust storms which cut the amount of sunlight reaching the surface of Mars effectively to zero. As a result, the rover was put in sleep mode in the hopes that its solar panels would be brushed clean by the wind (as has happened in the past), allowing the rover to recover as power was again generated. Mission controllers are both signaling to and listening for the rover in the hopes that this "90 day mission" can continue even longer.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Bridges


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows multiple rainbows appearing in the skies of New Jersey as Hurricane Florence passed by.

Monday, October 1, 2018

To the Edge of Space


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the first launch from Cape Canaveral in 1950. Project Bumper combined "liberated" V-2 rockets with the U.S. Army's WAC Corporal to create a two-stage vehicle to touch the edge of space.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

The Beads of Time


Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a time lapse showing the path of Saturn (Cronos, Time) across the night sky. "Mouseover" the image in the link to show a "true image" showing the wavering path across the heavens.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Galactic Triangle


If Messier 33, The Triangulum Galaxy, was as bright to our eyes over its "surface" as Sirius was, today's Astronomy Picture of the Day would be the sight that greeted us in our evening skies. Oh, to be on some extra-galactic wanderer with that as your sight!

Monday, September 24, 2018

Rock Hoppers



On occasion, classic science fiction refers to asteroid miners as "rock hoppers" (usually the term is "belter", but there's a lot of classic science fiction). Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day brings us actual rock hoppers in the form of micro probes exploring the surface of Asteroid Ryugu.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Figure Eight



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows an analemma (the path of the Sun in the sky) over the standing stones of Callanish. "Mouseover" the image in the link to match snapshots of the Sun with dates of the year.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Sky Drapes



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows auroral activity spotted over the skies of Hudson Bay. Alas, while I was recently fairly north, we did not see anything like this!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Deep Look



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day probes the subtle beauty of IC 5146 in the constellation of Cygnus. Astounding work!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Monday, September 17, 2018

Saturday, September 15, 2018

The Cruel Sky



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the snow-capped peak of Mont Blanc, scuddering clouds, the serene Milky Way and a transient interloper in the form of a fleeting Perseid.

Friday, September 14, 2018

HALO



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day breaks down the details of a Sun Halo. "Mouseover" the image in the link to see what is what.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

The Crowded Sky



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows a crowded sky. Off in the galactic distance, the nebula and rich starfields of the constellation of Auriga. Close in, relatively speaking, a visitor to the inner system, Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Phasing



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a short video showing the nightly shifts in the appearance of the Moon. Click on the link in order to see the video.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Monday, September 10, 2018

View from the Ridge



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a short video showing the full panoramic view from Vera Rubin Ridge of Mount Sharp, the current area of operations for MSL Curiosity. Click on the link to see the video (image above is static).

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Falling, Falling



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows a Perseid meteor captured "live" as it burned up in our atmosphere this past August.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Hex



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the North Polar Hexagon of Saturn, as taken by the Cassini Orbiter in 2012. And you thought Jupiter's Great Red Spot was a planetary oddity!

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Bowshock Filaments



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows filaments of the Veil Nebula, the "western" part of the overall structure. The nebula is remnants of a supernova event, marking the progress of the shockwave through interstellar space.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

On the Edge



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is of NGC 3682, a spiral galaxy in the constellation of Leo. I will gladly pay you Tuesday for a cheeseburger today.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Lava Moon



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows a full Moon rising over a lava fountain. It puts me in mind of the birth of the Moon as depicted in the cheesy classic One Million Years B.C. and the birth of a second moon as depicted in the equally cheesy classic Crack in the World. Ah, the cinema!


Monday, September 3, 2018

Halo Effect



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is an image from the lamented Cassini Orbiter, taken in 2017, and combined with an image from the venerable (and still functioning, long may it do so!) Hubble Space Telescope.

What is happening on Saturn? Auroral activity. Imagine being on the "surface" (well, maybe in a balloon!) and being able to view both those auroras and those rings!

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Outburst



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a short video showing a 2003 flare on our home star. Currently in a "quiet period", the Sun can surprise us with outbursts. In fact, today marks one of the most powerful outbursts, in the year 1859.

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Wisps



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day combines data from Earth-observing satellites to show the presence and pathways of sea salt aerosols, carbon aerosols and dust aerosols across our blue planet.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Mars AS BIG AS the Moon



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the Angry Red Planet, still bright and (relatively) close to us in the night skies. For once we seem to have escaped the (false) internet meme that Mars would be "as big as the Moon!" during opposition.

Surface features are starting to peak through as the global dust storm subsides. Still no word (knock on wood) from Opportunity!

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Deep Reds and Subtle Blues



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day brings us NGC 6914 in the constellation of Cygnus. What a mix of reds and blues, stars, gas and dust!

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Glow



Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day brings us the glow of car lights scattered through dense fog and the biological glow of small organisms in the water along the coast of Oregon. Above, the glow of the Milky Way.