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Planets

Venus at Its Best

Venus is readily visible in the evening sky until late May during this most favorable apparition of its eight-year cycle.

Celestial Objects to Observe

One Planet, Two Moons, Three Shadows

This coming weekend, weather permitting, almost anyone with a telescope in North America (and northwestern South America) can see the shadows of three Jovian moons at once.

Planets

One Planet, One Moon, and Three Shadows

Clouds and poor seeing plagued much of North America on the night of March 27–28, 2004, but some observers still managed to see the remarkable triple shadow transit on Jupiter.

Planets

A Disturbance In Jupiter's Clouds

A new, 40°-long, diffuse blue feature is currently visible at the interface between Jupiter's South Equatorial Belt and the Equatorial Zone.

Celestial Objects to Observe

Storm Watch on Mars

If events of the past 30 years are an indication, there's a good chance that the Martian landscape may soon be cloaked by a major dust storm.

Planets

Moon Occults Mars

During the predawn hours of Thursday, July 17th, the waning gibbous Moon will cover Mars for skywatchers in southeastern Florida, the Caribbean, and parts of Central and South America.

Planets

Dust Storm on Mars

A large regional dust storm has enveloped several thousand square kilometers of the red planet and shows no signs of abating.

Planets

Mars: The Show Continues

Mars will remain a fiery yellow-orange beacon in the evening sky during the first half of September and will shrink and fade only a little until well into October.

Celestial Objects to Observe

Another Martian Dust Storm

Less than one month after a localized dust storm appeared on the Martian surface, another dust cloud has spring up.

Celestial Objects to Observe

Mercury Transits the Sun

When this innermost planet passes between the Earth and the Sun on May 7th, it will appear as a tiny black "sunspot" in small telescopes.

Planets

Jupiter's Moon Dances

Every six years, for a few months at a time, Jupiter's satellites engage in a wonderful variety of alignments. They're starting up again.

Planets

An Observer's Guide to Mars

In 2001 the red planet swung closer to Earth than it had since 1988. It'll be even better in 2003. Here's an observer's guide from the 2001 opposition to whet your appetite for 2003.

Celestial Objects to Observe

Mercury Transit Tales

Mostly clear skies in Europe, the Far East, and Australia meant that many amateurs were able to view this rare event.

Planets

Viewing Mercury at Its Best

Fast-moving Mercury can be elusive. But spotting this sparkling little planet is easy if you know where and when to look.

Celestial Objects to Observe

Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto in 2003

With our detailed charts, you'll be able to locate the outer planets Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto the rest of the year.

Planets

Mars Glides Between Two Nebulae

During the predawn hours of March 5th and 6th, watch as Mars glides between a close pair of nebulae — the Lagoon (M8) and the Trifid (M20).

Celestial Objects to Observe

Crescent Moon Joins Three Planets at Dawn

The waning crescent Moon helps point the way to Mars, Venus, and Mercury before sunrise on Monday through Wednesday mornings.

Planets

Moon Pairs with Jupiter and Venus

The crescent Moon forms two beautiful conjunctions with the two brightest planets during twilight Wednesday and Thursday.

Planets

All Eyes on Pluto

July's encounters with two 12th-magnitude stars could rewrite the textbooks on the Pluto-Charon system.

Planets

Dance of the Planets Concludes

The grand and beautiful planetary lineup is drawing to a close as Venus approaches Jupiter in the western sky at dusk.

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