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Cosmic Challenge: Shadow Bands

Aug 03 2017 10:35 AM | PhilH in Phil Harrington's Cosmic Challenge

Enthusiasts think nothing of jetting around the world just to witness the few brief moments of a total solar eclipse. And with good reason, for all who behold the majesty of totality will give impassioned testimony to its unbridled glory. A total solar eclipse is the most beautiful and emotionally charged celestial event of all.

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August 2017 Skies

Aug 03 2017 10:30 AM | cookman in This Month

Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Solar Eclipse, Planet Plotting, August Moon Focus Constellations: Perseus, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Cygnus, Lyra, Aquila, Ophiuchus, Hercules, Corona Borealis, Bootes, Draco, Ursa Minor, Ursa Major, Camelopardalis

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July 2017 Skies

Jul 02 2017 09:00 AM | cookman in This Month

Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Planet Plotting, July Moon Focus Constellations: Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Cygnus, Lyra, Aquila, Ophiuchus, Virgo, Hercules, Corona Borealis, Bootes, Draco, Ursa Minor, Ursa Major, Camelopardalis

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Cosmic Challenge: M13's propeller

Jul 01 2017 09:33 AM | PhilH in Phil Harrington's Cosmic Challenge

In last month's column, we paid a visit to the Moon and the crater pair of Messier and Messier A. This month, we head back out into deep space to examine one of the most spectacular entries in Charles Messier's catalog: M13, the Great Hercules Globular Cluster.

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Cosmic Challenge: Lunar Craters Messier and Messier A

May 31 2017 01:20 PM | PhilH in Phil Harrington's Cosmic Challenge

Summer is in the offing here in the Northern Hemisphere and the longest day of the year is at hand. While many of us enjoy the warmer weather, the dark of night comes late in the evening and leaves all too early the following morning. So while deep-sky observing is limited, we can still enjoy viewing our Moon even if the sky is still bright. Yes, observing challenges await us on our nearest neighbor in space.

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June 2017 Skies

May 31 2017 08:01 AM | cookman in This Month

Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Summer Solstice, Planet Plotting, June Moon Focus Constellations: Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Auriga, Perseus, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Cygnus, Lyra, Draco, Hercules, Bootes, Ursa Minor, Ursa Major, Camelopardalis, Lynx

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The Ages of Astrophotography 1839-2015

May 06 2017 07:36 AM | RefractorPhill in Books & Software

The author, Stefan Hughes, is a historian/ astronomer with a passion for astrophotography and genealogy (family tree research). His interest for ancestral research and the lineage of families gave rise to his first book "Catchers of the Light - The Forgotten Lives of the Men and Women who First Photographed the Heavens" in which he focuses on the background of the first astro photographers and astronomers 19th and 20th centuries. The second book, "The Ages of Astrophotography" is a must-read sequel which fits well on every astronomer's book shelf!

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May 2017 Skies

May 04 2017 09:27 AM | cookman in This Month

Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Planet Plotting, May Moon Focus Constellations: Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Auriga, Perseus, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Cygnus, Lyra, Draco, Hercules, Bootes, Ursa Minor, Ursa Major, Camelopardalis, Lynx

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Cosmic Challenge: The Antennae

May 01 2017 12:45 PM | PhilH in Phil Harrington's Cosmic Challenge

Seven decades ago, while scanning a Palomar Sky Survey plate of the area around brilliant Regulus in Leo the Lion, astronomers Robert Harrington (no relation) and A.G. Wilson noticed a faint blur of light just 1/2° north of the star. They may have thought at first that the glow was just an internal lens flare caused by stray starlight, but it soon became apparent that they had discovered something very real.

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April 2017 Skies

Apr 08 2017 08:02 AM | cookman in This Month

Highlights: Comet Journal, Martian Landers, Meteor Showers, Planet Plotting, April Moon Focus Constellations: Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Auriga, Perseus, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Draco, Hercules, Bootes, Ursa Minor, Ursa Major, Camelopardalis, Lynx

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