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Celestial News & Events

M101's Supernova Shines On

As of October 3rd the supernova in the galaxy M101 was down to about magnitude 11.1, after peaking in mid-September at 9.9. It's fading by about 0.1 magnitude every two days now, and it has changed from white to strikingly orange-red.

Celestial News & Events

Antiope Occultation Yields Double Bonanza

When observers fanned out last July 19th to record a binary asteroid's passage across a distant star, they hoped to gain scientifically important new findings. The results are in, and they've scored big-time!

Celestial News & Events

Comet Elenin Self-Destructs

It was going to be the celestial highlight of 2011. Now Comet Elenin appears to have broken into pieces just two weeks prior to its perihelion.

Celestial News & Events

Perseids: Looking Up, Looking Down

Earthbound observers struggled to see August's famous "shooting stars" through a sky awash with moonlight. But a shutterbug astronaut aboard the International Space Station had the best view of all!

Celestial News & Events

Off Year for the Perseid Meteor Shower

The year's best-known display of shooting stars is usually dramatic and dependable. But even though light from a full Moon will wash out the fainter arrivals when the shower peaks early in the morning of August 13th, you'll still see the shower's brightest meteors streak across the sky.

Celestial News & Events

Rare Occultation by a Double Asteroid

Early on Tuesday, July 19th, lucky observers along a 120-mile-wide path from north-central California to central Saskatchewan have a chance to watch a big, enigmatic double asteroid briefly cover a relatively bright star in Aquarius.

Even if you're nowhere near the path, one enterprising observer plans a live webcast of the view through his telescopes during the event.

Celestial News & Events

Happy Birthday, Neptune!

On July 12th, Neptune completed one full circuit around the Sun since its discovery on the night of Sept 23-24, 1846.

Celestial News & Events

Asteroid To Buzz Earth Monday, June 27th

Asteroid 2011 MD is expected to pass less than 8,000 miles above Earth's surface around 1 p.m. EDT (17:00 UT) on Monday.

Celestial News & Events

June 15th Lunar Eclipse Observed

Many people in the Eastern Hemisphere enjoyed a long, satisfying, and extraordinarily dark lunar eclipse on June 15, 2011.

Comet PANSTARRS

Celestial News & Events

A Comet Worth Waiting For?

Observers using the automated Pan-STARRS 1 telescope in Hawaii have found a new comet. As of right now, it might brighten to 1st magnitude in early 2013, but it's far too early to be certain of that.

Celestial News & Events

June 15th's Deep, Eastern Lunar Eclipse

Those of you in the Eastern Hemisphere are in for a treat: the deepest, longest total lunar eclipse in more than a decade.

Where to spot Eta Aquariid meteors

Celestial News & Events

See the Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower

The Eta Aquarids might be the best meteor shower that you've never heard of. Best viewed at southerly latitudes, this shower is strong in the predawn hours from May 4th through May 8th.

Celestial News & Events

A Great Time for Space-Station Watching

For the next week, the enormous International Space Station will be slam-dunk easy to spot in the evening sky — if you know where and when to look for it.

Celestial News & Events

The Fickle Lyrid Meteors

Even though moonlight will interfere with this year's Lyrid meteor shower, skywatchers should be alert for a possible outburst on the mornings of April 22nd and 23rd.

Celestial News & Events

Lyrid Meteor Shower in 2013

Even though moonlight will interfere with this year's Lyrid meteor shower, skywatchers should be alert for a possible outburst on the night of April 21–22.

Celestial News & Events

T Pyxidis Finally Blows Again

A very overdue recurrent nova is having its long-awaited outburst. You can follow it with binoculars right after dark.

Celestial News & Events

March 19th's "Super Moon" Over Boston

S&T senior editor Dennis di Cicco took full advantage of a crystal-clear sky and a panoramic setting to record breathtaking views of an extra-big full Moon rising over the Boston skyline. Here's the story of how he did it!

Celestial News & Events

Mercury at Its Evening Highest

This week, Mercury reaches its highest in the evening sky for observers in the Northern Hemisphere.

Occultation of Mu Geminorum Sunday, March 13th

Celestial News & Events

Watch a Star Wink Out on Sunday

On Sunday, March 13th, not long after sunset, a 3rd-magnitude star will disappear suddenly as it's covered by the dark edge of the Moon for parts of eastern North America.

Celestial News & Events

Best Mercury of 2011

Mercury's best evening apparition of 2011 for Northern Hemisphere observers takes place this March. And with Jupiter to point the way, Mercury is unusually easy to locate from March 12–18.

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