moon

Sky-watchers can rejoice at the change of seasons this week, seeing the moon join forces with Mars and Saturn, just as one of the sky’s most brilliant stars is eclipsed. Moon joins Spica. Late at night on Monday, March 17, look for the waning gibbous moon to rise in the eastern sky with two bright celestial…

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With a change of seasons only days away, mid-March skies offer celestial sights that even the novice stargazer will find easy to enjoy. Lunar rectangle. After nightfall on Monday, March 10, look for the waxing gibbous moon to form a corner of a rectangle with Jupiter and the Gemini twins, Castor and Pollux, high in the southern…

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A final glimpse of the seventh planet from the sun comes this week, and the moon takes sky-watchers on a celestial tour of some stunning star clusters. Last-chance green giant. After dusk on Monday, March 3, the razor-thin crescent moon acts as convenient guidepost to the fast-fading planet Uranus, which will hang just below the moon….

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This artwork depicts the blast formed from an impacting meteor on the lunar surface. Credit: NASA Anyone looking up at the right moment on September 11, 2013, may have caught sight of a brief flash of light on the moon. The flash was the biggest and brightest lunar impact ever observed by astronomers, a new Monthly…

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A crescent moon snuggles up to the innermost planets this week, while sky-watchers will also see mythical twins reveal two stellar wonders. Zodiacal lights. With the moon out of the early evening sky this week, ideal sky conditions prevail for hunting down the elusive zodiacal lights. This ethereal glow across the sky is caused by sunlight…

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NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has snapped an image of both the Chinese lander and the hibernating Yutu, or Jade Rabbit, rover sitting among the craters on the surface of the moon. (Related: “Cool Video: Watch HD Footage of China’s Historic Moon Rover Landing.”) Although the six-wheeled robotic geologist is only a scant 5 feet…

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  The New Year promises a pair of lunar disappearing acts and a potential surprise meteor shower, among other celestial delights. While scores of amazing astronomical phenomena are in the offing, here are our picks for sky-watching events worth circling on your calendar for 2014. 1. Total Eclipse of the Moon This year sky-watchers will…

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China’s Chang’e-3 spacecraft performed a  nerve-wracking 12 minute descent and touched down safely on the lunar surface on Saturday, December 14 at 8:11 am EST. Several hours later, a 140-kilogram (300-pound) six-wheeled rover named Jade-Rabbit rolled down a ramp to begin its 3-month mission exploring the lunar rocks and soil. China joins an elite club of nations–just…

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The waxing crescent moon appears to play peek-a-boo with the planet Venus through a natural rock arch in this dramatic snapshot taken in Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada. Sky-watchers this week got to see Earth’s lone natural satellite glide past the second planet from the sun in the southwestern skies. The two worlds…

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As we head toward the final days of November, skywatchers spy pretty planetary and lunar pairings and a mythical hunter, while anxiously waiting to learn of the fate of comet ISON as it rounds the sun. Moon and Regulus. In the hours before sunrise on Tuesday, November 26, look for the last quarter moon to…

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Sky-watchers will see a sprinkling of shooting stars, bask under autumn’s brightest star pattern, and take a dip in a cosmic lagoon. Taurid meteors. Look toward the southeast sky on Monday, November 4, and into the following morning to catch sight of the minor South Taurid meteor shower. A moonless night means darker skies, which…

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The Earth’s moon plays hide and seek with distant stars and our sun this week, and the nighttime sights include a double comet show in the pre-dawn skies. Lunar Trio. In the early morning hours of Tuesday, October 29 the moon will form a stunning triangular pattern with ruddy Mars and blue-white star Regulus in…

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The Earth’s moon plays hide and seek with distant stars and our sun this week, and the nighttime sights include a double comet show in the pre-dawn skies. Lunar Trio. In the early morning hours of Tuesday, October 29 the moon will form a stunning triangular pattern with ruddy Mars and blue-white star Regulus in…

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