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Night Sky Sights

This Week's Sky at a Glance, September 4 – 12

Mars is big, bright and close as it nears opposition! It nears the gibbous Moon this weekend.

Antares, imaged

Bright Stars

Meet Antares: The Star That Is Not Mars

Antares is a red supergiant that — like Betelgeuse — will one day go supernova.

Sky Tour Astronomy Podcast

September 2020: Four Planets & More!

Take advantage of September's beautiful evenings to gaze upward as you listen to our guided tour of the star-filled sky.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, August 28 – September 5

Betelgeuse is dimming again. . . somewhat. After its historic fade last winter to magnitude +1.6, Orion's red supergiant Betelgeuse fully recovered, to +0.4, before it disappeared into the sunset for the season. But now as it emerges low in the east before dawn, it seems to have faded back…

Algol

Celestial News & Events

Take a Roller Coaster Ride with Algol, a Fast Eclipsing Binary

How would you like to see a star drop two magnitudes in the time it takes to eat dinner? Easy to do. Just check out one of these fast eclipsing binaries — they'll make your head spin.

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, August 21 – 29

After dark, Jupiter and Saturn shine in the southeast to south, lined up almost level now. And Fomalhaut, the Autumn Star, is making its inevitable appearance above the southeast horizon.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, August 14 – 22

Jupiter and Saturn line up level in the south earlier in the evening now, as summer proceeds. How early in twilight can you see them both? High upper left of them shines Altair. As night comes on, look for the Sagittarius Teapot to Jupiter's lower right.

407 Perseid composite

Explore the Night with Bob King

Perseids Peak August 11–12 — Get Ready for the Show

The Perseid meteor shower is like no other. Every August it delivers up to 100 meteors an hour in pleasant weather conducive to getting outside and staying up late. What's more, most kids still aren't in school, making it possible for the entire family to enjoy the event.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, August 7 – 15

It's Perseid meteor week! The shower peaks on the night of August 11th, but you may see the occasional Perseid any night and perhaps already have. Jupiter and Saturn shine in the southeast after dark. Bright Vega passes closest to overhead around 10 or 11 p.m.

Sky Tour Astronomy Podcast

August 2020: Planets & Perseids

The Perseids are upon us — and as you're looking out for shooting stars, look for Jupiter and Saturn low in the southeast as soon as night begins to fall.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, July 31 – August 8

Mars rises in the east around 11 p.m. daylight saving time this week, in Pisces. Watch for it to come up below the Great Square of Pegasus.

Looking back at Pluto

Solar System

Cool Off with Pluto This Summer

Pluto might be a challenging target but it's well worth the effort. Grab your telescope and see if you can spot this distant, chilly world.

Planets

Ice Giants: Neptune and Uranus

Spot Uranus and Neptune, and relive the original discoveries.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, July 24 – August 1

All this summer, there's no missing Jupiter and Saturn on any clear evening. Jupiter is the brightest point in the evening sky. Saturn is left of it.

people in a small boat pass in front of a large iceberg

Celestial Objects to Observe

500 Days Until the Total Solar Eclipse Over Antarctica

Travel to the ends of the Earth to experience a special — but risky — total solar eclipse in Antarctica.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, July 17 – 25

The waxing crescent Moon swells back into the evening sky this week, and Jupiter and Saturn are at opposition on the nights of July 13th and 20th, respectively.

Sharing Comet NEOWISE

Celestial News & Events

Comet NEOWISE Dazzles at Dusk

Comet NEOWISE has captivated skywatchers with its stunning tail. Now that it's moved into the evening sky and climbing higher each night even more people will get a chance to see it.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week's Sky At a Glance

This Week's Sky at a Glance, July 10 – 18

Jupiter and Saturn rise in twilight this week. Mars is a fire-beacon high in the southeast by the beginning of dawn. Venus, low as dawn begins to brighten, passes just 1° from Aldebaran on Saturday and Sunday mornings July 11th and 12th.

Comet NEOWISE

Comets

Comet NEOWISE Delights at Dawn

Skywatchers are treated to a naked-eye comet as NEOWISE emerges into the the dawn sky.

M85 supernova

Explore the Night with Bob King

Two Bright Supernovae Light Up Nearby Galaxies

Two bright new supernovae — 2020nlb in M85 and 2020nvb in NGC 4457 — are now within the range of amateur telescopes in the western sky at nightfall.

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