The cover of the February 2023 issue

Nightscapes, Winter Outreach, and Wolf-Rayet Stars

In the February 2023 issue of Sky & Telescope, Alan Dyer shares his tips and tricks for creating incredible nightscapes and stunning panoramas. While we’re capturing bits and pieces of the sky from Earth, the European Space Agency’s Gaia mission is mapping stars along the entire celestial sphere. We’re covering the enormous contribution this space observatory has made to astronomy so far. Even as Gaia takes us into the future of star maps, we’re celebrating their history with a look at the astronomer who introduced 16 of our modern constellations. From constellations to star maps, we’re on the path to an improved picture of what our galaxy looks like from the outside. Recently, astronomers charted a previously unknown structure, a bridge between the Local Arm and the Perseus Arm that they’re calling the Cepheus Spur.


The Allure of Wolf-Rayet Stars

These rare jewels create powerful winds and mesmerizing dust spirals.

By Greg Bryant

Winter Outreach

Showing the public celestial sights through a telescope can be a wonderfully rewarding experience.  

By Ted Forte

The Constellations of Petrus Plancius

A little-known astronomer introduced 16 of our 88 constellations. Who was he?

By Ray Harris

The Cepheus Spur

This feature in our galaxy drapes distant luminaries across the northern sky from Cepheus to Orion.

By Ken Croswell

The Gaia Revolution

The prolific surveyor has mapped the universe and unraveled our galaxy’s history.

By Govert Schilling

Sewing Up Nightscapes

Panoramic mosaics can show far more than a single image ever can. 

By Alan Dyer

Beyond the Printed Page:

Photos of the DART Impact

See the stunning images of NASA’s DART mission colliding with Dimorphos.

Laser Pointers

Read our guide to using laser pointers safely.

Wolf-Rayet Stars

Check out this catalog of Wolf-Rayet stars.

The Astronomer’s Telegram

Find out about supernova detections as they are reported.


A Naked-Eye Cluster Quest

These celestial treasures are yours for the taking if your skies are dark enough.

By Fred Schaaf

Comet Prospects for 2023

Eight icy visitors are expected to be bright enough for modest backyard scopes.

By Bob King

Hidden Maria

Look for tiny clues that reveal the true nature of light plains.  

By Charles Wood

The Simplest Astrophotography

Great night-sky shots can be made with just a camera, lens, and tripod.

By Tony Puerzer

Table of Contents

See what else February’s issue has to offer.


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