Focusing on the Brightest Gamma-ray Burst of All Time
Gamma-ray bursts are the most luminous explosions in the universe, and we’ve learned much about these superlative outbursts since their discovery in 1967.
This Week's Sky at a Glance, March 31 – April 8
Mercury emerges this week far below Venus at dusk, while Venus makes its way toward the Pleiades. Orion turns his belt horizontal for the warming weather.
The First Stars Weren’t Born Alone
New evidence suggests the first stars to shine in the universe formed in groups.
Pleasures of Lunar Pareidolia
Do you still see animal shapes in clouds? If so, you'll enjoy doing the same with the Moon, home to the Moon Maiden, a giant pair of scissors, and other fantastic specters of light and shadow.
Exoplanet TRAPPIST-1b Has No Atmosphere
The TRAPPIST exoplanets offer the James Webb Space Telescope some of the best opportunities to observe rocky worlds. But Webb images show the innermost planet b has no atmosphere.
Satellites and Space Debris Are Polluting Our Night Skies
Astronomers are sounding the alarm about low-Earth orbit satellites and space debris as significant contributors to light pollution that will affect even the remotest earthbound stargazer.
This Week's Sky at a Glance, March 24 – April 2
The Winter Hexagon fills the west after dark. The waxing Moon steps east across the evening sky from Venus past the Pleiades, then past Mars.
The Northeast Astronomy Forum Is Back in 2023
The Northeast Astronomy Forum in Suffern, NY, welcomes visitors from across the world on April 15–16, and we'll be there — will you?
The Odd Behavior of Interstellar Object 'Oumuamua, Explained
It wasn't aliens after all — an astrochemist and an astronomer have teamed up to explain why the interstellar object 1I/'Oumuamua behaved the way it did.
Analysis of Asteroid Ryugu Reveals Prebiotic Compounds
Prebiotic compounds previously found in meteorites have now turned up in pristine samples from the asteroid Ryugu, confirming their extraterrestrial origin.
This Galaxy Is Powerful, But Lonely Too
A large elliptical galaxy spewing a black hole–powered jet might have eaten its neighbors, leaving it on its own.
Rosalind Franklin Rover Targeting 2028 Launch to Mars
The European Space Agency is working to get its ambitious Mars rover back on track after complex delays.
This Week's Sky at a Glance, March 17 – 26
The crescent Moon visits Venus. The Orange Triangle turns nearly equilateral. And as evening grows late, Arcturus begins to dominate the low northeast. It's turning spring.
Anticipating Comet Tsuchinshan-ATLAS (C/2023 A3)
Newly discovered Comet C/2023 A3 might reach naked-eye brightness when it flies past Earth in 2024. Check out our forecast of what to expect to see in the months ahead.
Finally! Scientists Find Active Volcano on Venus
After decades of searching, scientists have finally found a clear sign of active volcanism on Venus.
Explore the Night with Bob King
Tell Time with the Big Dipper; See Ceres Transit a Spiral Galaxy
Phone battery dead? Learn how to tell time with the Big Dipper. Also, don't miss a remarkable transit of Ceres in front of the bright spiral galaxy M100.
Amateur Astronomers Help Provide Uninterrupted View of Venus’s Clouds
The newest observations will help astronomers understand a planetary-scale wave in the atmosphere of our sister planet.
Water on Earth Might Predate the Solar System
Astronomers studying the water vapor around a newborn star find that it’s chemically similar to ice in solar system comets, a possible source of Earth’s oceans.
This Week's Sky at a Glance, March 10 – 19
Venus and Jupiter widen in twilight. Mars, Aldebaran, and Betelgeuse form a triangle of similar orange sparkles. And there's lots to explore with optical aid off the trailing foot of Gemini, including the Toes.
Do Diamonds Rain on the Ice Giants?
New research shows diamonds might condense out of Neptune's mantle, but not Uranus', explaining a decades-old discrepancy.