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Latest amateur astronomer Stories

6b9c5bf5f2932c5d75daf20bb39e4827
2010-09-09 14:40:00

Amateur astronomers working with professional astronomers have spotted two fireballs lighting up Jupiter's atmosphere this summer, marking the first time Earth-based telescopes have captured relatively small objects burning up in the atmosphere of the giant planet. The two fireballs "“ which produced bright freckles on Jupiter that were visible through backyard telescopes "“ occurred on June 3, 2010, and August 20, 2010, respectively. A new paper that includes both pros and...

97bcd14f10bcba4490aaf372a8f764c31
2010-06-04 12:00:00

An amateur astronomer in Australia reported witnessing a bright flash from an object hitting Jupiter and apparently burning up in the atmosphere. "When I saw the flash, I couldn't believe it," said amateur astronomer Anthony Wesley. "The fireball lasted about 2 seconds and was very bright." Wesley, a computer programmer with a good reputation among professional astronomers, recently made professional and amateur sky-gazers aware of the cosmic collision.  Another amateur astronomer in...

a373b9151166d30a4a1f72543a8b76c11
2007-04-04 13:20:00

In a galaxy far, far away, a massive star suffered a nasty double whammy. On Oct. 20, 2004, Japanese amateur astronomer Koichi Itagaki saw the star let loose an outburst so bright that it was initially mistaken for a supernova. The star survived, but for only two years. On Oct. 11, 2006, professional and amateur astronomers witnessed the star actually blowing itself to smithereens as Supernova 2006jc. "We have never observed a stellar outburst and then later seen the star explode," says...


Word of the Day
toccata
  • In music, a work for a keyboard-instrument, like the pianoforte or organ, originally intended to utilize and display varieties of touch: but the term has been extended so as to include many irregular works, similar to the prelude, the fantasia, and the improvisation.
This word is Italian in origin, coming from the feminine past participle of 'toccare,' to touch.
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