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Latest Naked eye Stories

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2008-04-05 17:05:00

The date was March 8th, less than a month ago. In a remote corner of Kansas, the sun was going down and the deepening twilight beckoned to photographer Doug Zubenel driving through the countryside. Something photogenic, he knew, was about to happen. He turned his car onto an unfamiliar dirt road and proceeded into the sunset. "The brilliant sun did not allow me to see the cement railings on a bridge over a small creek. The next thing I knew, I had totaled my car!" Zubenel emerged from the...

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2007-12-13 00:00:00

Mark your calendar: The best meteor shower of 2007 peaks on Friday, December 14th. "It's the Geminid meteor shower," says NASA astronomer Bill Cooke of the Marshall Space Flight Center. "Start watching on Thursday evening, Dec. 13th, around 10 pm local time," he advises. "At first you might not see very many meteors"”but be patient. The show really heats up after midnight and by dawn on Friday, Dec. 14th, there could be dozens of bright meteors per hour streaking across the sky." The...

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2007-08-07 15:51:18

As the Perseid meteor shower becomes visible in all its glory on August 13, natural fireworks will fill the sky. Showers of meteors, or "Ëœshooting stars', appear as bright streaks of light in the sky. The display runs through the night. Dust trails are left behind by every comet as it nears the Sun. As Earth's orbit crosses the dust ejected by the comet Swift-Tuttle, a regular occurrence every August, it provides a fabulous spectacle for viewers on Earth. As the particles enter the...

2007-04-11 16:00:00

Venus Express, Europe's first mission to Venus, has now successfully orbited our closest neighbour 355 times during the past year. Coincidentally on its first anniversary on 11 April, Venus and the constellation Pleiades are very close in the sky, for your viewing pleasure. The celestial spectacle is clearly visible with the naked eye "“ provided that there are no clouds to cover it. Venus and Pleiades can be seen drawing closer together in the western sky; after sunset and before...

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2006-04-13 10:41:09

This month, Venus can guide you to a naked-eye planet that ancient astronomers inexplicably failed to see. Ancient people didn't have TV or electric lights. So, when the sun went down every night, they got their entertainment by watching the sky. And it was entertaining. Without city lights to interfere, the Milky Way was spectacular. Meteors flitted across the sky. Zodiacal lights chased the sunset. Of special interest were the five naked-eye planets, the ones you could see without a...

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2006-02-10 06:40:00

NASA -- A celestial swarm of stars will hover near a honey-colored Saturn for the next several months. Sky watchers will see the ringed planet together with the Beehive cluster, or M44, a group of stars that also make their home in the Milky Way galaxy. Saturn and the fainter cluster of stars can be spotted below the moon on Feb. 10. On Feb. 11, Saturn will be visible above the moon. And at sunset on Feb. 12, the full moon will rise to join Saturn, a pale golden glow in the eastern sky. A...

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2005-03-04 08:05:00

Cambridge, MA -- In the March 4th issue of Science, astronomers report that they have measured the slowest ever motion of a galaxy across the plane of the sky. This distant whirlpool of stars appears to creep along despite its actual speed through space because it is located so far from the Earth. Measuring this galaxy's glacial pace of only 30 micro-arcseconds per year stretched current radio astronomy technology to its limit. "A snail crawling on Mars would appear to be moving across the...


Word of the Day
bodacious
  • Remarkable; prodigious.
  • Audacious; gutsy.
  • Completely; extremely.
  • Audaciously; boldly.
  • Impressively great in size; enormous; extraordinary.
This word is probably from the dialectal 'boldacious,' a blend of 'bold' and 'audacious.'
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