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Battered Vesta

Explore the Night with Bob King

March — A Good Time to Visit Vesta

Dip into this easy guide to seeing the brightest asteroid, Vesta, and understanding what makes it unique.

Cool blue world

Explore the Night with Bob King

Tiny Asteroid Flora and Mighty Uranus Team Up

Both Uranus and the asteroid 8 Flora came to opposition on Halloween. Catch them both in the same corner of the sky the next clear night.

Occultations

Chase a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid As It Flies by Earth

Break out your binoculars or a small telescope, we've got a busy week ahead! Watch as a bright asteroid approaches Earth, the Moon steals a star, and Comet ATLAS's last hurrah.

Incoming point

Explore the Night with Bob King

"Potentially Hazardous" Asteroid Is Headed For Your Telescope

A potentially hazardous asteroid makes a flyby of Earth this Friday, offering amateurs with modest telescopes a chance to ride along.

Trojan asteroids

Asteroids

Be a Warrior — Tackle a Trojan Asteroid

You've seen Jupiter and its four brightest moons. Now meet the rest of the family — the Trojan asteroids.

Protoplanet of intrigue

Asteroids

Pop in on Pallas and Iris Tonight

Break out your binoculars or telescope the next clear night for a peek at the bright asteroids Pallas and Iris, both at opposition this spring. 

Asteroids

Vesta Gets Close and Bright

Vesta, the brightest asteroid, puts on one of its best shows ever in June, when it shines enough to see without optical aid.

Amalthea occultation chords

Celestial News & Events

Asteroid 113 Amalthea to Occult Star

Here's an opportunity for amateur astronomers to reveal more about asteroid Amalthea's satellite.

Explore the Night with Bob King

Asteroid 3200 Phaethon: Geminid Parent at Its Closest and Brightest!

The parent asteroid of next month's Geminid meteor shower, 3200 Phaethon, is about to make a historically close flyby. Get ready to watch it race across the sky.

Asteroids

Asteroid Florence Pays Earth a Visit

Florence, one of the largest Earth-approaching asteroids, gets close enough to see in a small telescope this week and next. Here's how to find it.

Just Saying Hello

Asteroids

See a Potentially Hazardous Asteroid From Your Backyard

Get ready for 2014 JO25, the biggest asteroid to fly this close to Earth since 2004. Good news — even a 3-inch telescope will show it! Update: See below for a radar image and animation of 2014 JO25 captured by NASA's Goldstone Solar System Radar on April 18, 2017. Every week, a…

Celestial Objects to Observe

Let's Get Serious About Ceres

We pay a visit to Ceres, now the apple of the Dawn Mission's eye, as it creeps through Sagittarius this month

Non-threatening, favorable pass

Asteroids

See Icarus Wing By Earth This Week

It's no myth. Icarus makes a rare flyby of Earth this week. Here's how to see it in your telescope and live online.

Celestial Objects to Observe

Do We Have Pieces of Pallas on Earth?

Chips of Pallas grace meteorite collections around the world. See where they all came from when the asteroid reaches opposition this spring.

Paths of Ceres and Vesta

Celestial Objects to Observe

Super-close Pairing of Ceres and Vesta

Two bright asteroids now appear extremely close to one another in the evening sky. Here's how to spot them in binoculars or a small telescope.

Asteroids

The Benson Prize

If saving the Earth from destruction isn't enough incentive to find near-Earth asteroids, there's a prize for the amateur who discovers one.

Comin' our way Friday

Celestial Objects to Observe

Hunting Asteroids From Your Backyard

You can discover an asteroid tonight. Digital technology and the CCD revolution have given amateurs the ability to do it. Here's how.

Asteroid 2 Pallas

Asteroids

Pallas in the Realm of the Galaxies

Catch Pallas, the year's brightest asteroid, as it traverses the Virgo Galaxy Cluster.

Asteroids

The Closest Whiz-by of Toutatis

An asteroid several kilometers wide will brighten to 9th magnitude and be visible in small telescopes when it passes Earth in late September.

Asteroids

Flora and Herculina meet Saturn

While checking out Saturn and Titan in the next few months, don't overlook two nearby minor planets: 8 Flora and 532 Herculina.

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