Wednesday, Apr. 23, 2014

NAKED EYE
Naked eye: Nothing eclipses this event

Naked eye: Nothing eclipses this event

By David Ward
We do not usually think about Earth having a shadow, even though we live in it half the time. Our shadow extends almost a million miles into space, and every now and then when the sun, Earth and the moon …
Bright planets and more in March skies

Bright planets and more in March skies

By David Ward
As usual, lots of things are happening up there this month. Here are some of the highlights. All of the bright planets are visible in their glory. At dusk, Jupiter is high overhead. It has been hanging out in the constellation Gemini, the twins, all winter, and it is the brightest...
Betelgeuse is the star of February

Betelgeuse is the star of February

By David Ward
February nights are mostly cloudy and we are all getting tired of this quasi-winter we’re having, so if you stay inside and watch TV all month, I will not blame you. Speaking of TV, here is a scary thought …
Winter’s brightest stars put on a show

Winter’s brightest stars put on a show

With not very much snow on the ground in the valley, it may not feel like winter has really arrived, but the stars tell a different story. All the bright stars of winter are on display up there and on a clear, cold night, they are spectacular.
Return of the Seven Sisters

Return of the Seven Sisters

By David Ward One of my favorite celestial objects is making an appearance this time of year. Early in the evening look to the east for a tiny cluster of stars about the size of the full moon. It almost looks like a small dipper, and in fact many people mistake it for the Little...
Comet ISON: big show or big bust?

Comet ISON: big show or big bust?

By David Ward A special guest is coming for a visit during the holidays – Comet ISON. Will it be the most amazing celestial spectacle any of us have ever seen in our lifetimes, or a complete dud? That question is being hotly debated in astronomical circles right now and nobody has a clue. Here...
The amazing story  of Deneb

The amazing story of Deneb

By David Ward One of these fine October evenings, look straight up over head for one of the most amazing stars in the sky, Deneb. It belongs to three different star groupings – the head of the Northern Cross, the tail of Cygnus the Swan, and one of the three points of the Summer Triangle....

All about Andromeda

By David Ward Rising in the east this time of year are a whole group of constellations representing one of the more elaborate myths of the ancient Greeks. Central to that story is Andromeda, the beautiful daughter of Queen Cassiopeia. To find Andromeda in the sky, first look for Pegasus, the flying horse, outlined by...

Best ‘star show’ of summer in August

By DAVID WARD August is that perfect month for stargazing when the nights are still delightfully warm, darkness comes at a more reasonable hour and shooting stars blaze across the nighttime sky. The biggest attraction this month up above is the “Old Faithful” of meteor showers, summer’s grand shooting star show, the Perseid meteor shower....

Finding Scorpius

July is a great time to look for the constellation Scorpius the scorpion, one of the few constellations that actually looks like what it is supposed to. On one of our balmy summer evenings look low in the southern sky for a fairly bright orange-looking star. That is Antares, the heart of the scorpion. His...