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Your online destination for news articles on planets, cosmology, NASA, space missions, and more. You’ll also find information on how to observe upcoming visible sky events such as meteor showers, solar and lunar eclipses, key planetary appearances, comets, and asteroids.

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Scanning Mars for microhabitats that could host microbial life

It may seem counterintuitive, but new research shows that observations taken from a great distance, even from orbit, may allow researchers to zoom in on martian microhabitats for the tiniest forms of life: microbes too small to see with the naked eye...
Monday, March 20, 2023

Observe the Virgo Cluster of galaxies: This Week in Astronomy with Dave Eicher

Hi folks, tune in every week of 2023 for the best in astronomy from Astronomy Editor Dave Eicher, brought to you by Celestron. This week, we'll discuss the Virgo Cluster of galaxies, which has the greatest assortment of galaxies you could imagine....

Next generation Event Horizon Telescope aims to get videos of black holes

In 2019, the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) collaboration produced the first-ever image of a black hole, stunning the world. Now, scientists are taking it further. The next generation Event Horizon Telescope (ngEHT) collaboration aims to create high-...
Friday, March 17, 2023

The Sky This Week: It’s Messier marathon time!

Friday, March 17 Mercury reaches superior conjunction at 7 A.M. EDT. The small planet will return after sunset near the end of March. The waning Moon means evening skies are completely clear for stargazing. After dark, you’ll have some time t...

Run a Messier marathon in honor of co-inventor Don Machholz

Last summer, the global amateur astronomer community was rocked when it lost one of its giants. Don Machholz from Arizona passed away suddenly on Aug. 9, 2022, at the age of 69. Don was a preeminent visual comet hunter with 12 discoveries to his cred...

Sporty new spacesuits revealed for Artemis 3 Moon mission

Since long before the first segment of International Space Station was launched in 1998, NASA astronauts have depended on the same spacesuit technology. However, that will soon change, as NASA has spent the past few years working with the private com...
Thursday, March 16, 2023

NASA’s oldest Mars orbiter just got a new lease on life

For more than 20 years, NASA’s Mars Odyssey orbiter has been circling the Red Planet, mapping the martian surface to help astronomers untangle the mysteries of Mars’ history. But in January 2022, engineers calculated that Odyssey only had...

'Goldilocks' star reveals hidden step in how water gets to planets like Earth

Without water, life on Earth could not exist as it does today. Understanding the history of water in the universe is critical to understanding how planets like Earth come to be. Astronomers typically refer to the journey water takes from its formatio...
Wednesday, March 15, 2023

A scientific salad for astronauts in deep space

An international team of scientists have developed a “space salad” that can keep astronauts well-nourished on future missions into deep space. The salad consists of seven ingredients — soybeans, poppy seeds, barley, kale, peanuts, sunflower seeds, a...

Star on the brink of going supernova spotted by James Webb Space Telescope

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has captured a stunning view of an exceptionally massive and hot star that’s well on its way to going supernova. The star, Wolf-Rayet 124 (WR 124), is located some 15,000 light-years away in the constellation Sag...
Tuesday, March 14, 2023

A brief history of the UK's Winchcombe meteorite

On Feb. 28, 2021, for the first time in 30 years, a meteorite fell in the U.K. and was later recovered by scientists. Today, there’s an international effort to study this space rock and learn more about its place in the early solar system. This meteo...

Will we ever figure out how to defy gravity?

The gravitational force is by far the weakest of the four forces of nature. It’s simple to defy gravity: just lift something in the air. But the annoying thing about gravity is that it’s both persistent and has an infinite range, which takes a surpri...

Astronomy magazine seeks Associate Editor and Staff Writer

Astronomy magazine currently has two open positions for space enthusiasts with the right combination of skills and experience. If you or someone you know would be a good fit for one of the roles, we encourage you to apply. Associate Editor: Kalmbach...
Monday, March 13, 2023

Super-Earths and the quest to understand our place in the cosmos

There are countless worlds beyond our own in the universe’s vast expanse. And among the most intriguing are super-Earths, a type of exoplanet that has captured the attention of scientists and stargazers alike since their initial discovery more ...

Did the Big Bang really happen? This Week in Astronomy with Dave Eicher

The Big Bang happened. The evidence is clear, ranging from the underpinnings of Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity, to the detection of the cosmic microwave background by Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson in the 1960s, to the confirmation of...
Friday, March 10, 2023

The Sky This Week: Catch the zodiacal light

Friday, March 10 This week, the Moon doesn’t rise until well after sunset, so it’s the perfect time to try viewing the zodiacal light, generated by sunlight scattering off dust in the inner solar system. At this time of year, the cone-...

Paradox of ultramassive black hole formation solved by supercomputer

With a gravitational field so strong that not even light can escape its grip, black holes are probably the most interesting and bizarre objects in the universe. Due to their extreme properties, a theoretical description of these celestial bodies is ...
Thursday, March 9, 2023

Radio interference from satellites is threatening astronomy

Visible light is just one part of the electromagnetic spectrum that astronomers use to study the universe. The James Webb Space Telescope was built to see infrared light, other space telescopes capture X-ray images, and observatories like the Green B...

Snapshot: Feather-shaped cloud soars over Mars

NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover added another feather to its cap after photographing wispy and colorful clouds on Mars, building upon a cloud survey done in 2021. In the panoramic mosaic photo taken last month, the cloud's fluttery shape displays...

Milky Way stars found nearly halfway to Andromeda Galaxy

Astronomers have discovered a slew of stars lingering in the far fringes of our galaxy. And when we say far, we mean far. The most distant of these stars is located more than 1 million light-years away. That’s almost halfway to our largest gal...
Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Animal astronomers: A bird’s eye view of the night sky

Humans have a complicated relationship with the night. We schedule most of our important tasks in the daylight hours, reserving the darkness for rest, relaxation, and, on clear nights, wonder. For many animals, however, the night is anything but rest...

Two potentially habitable planets found orbiting distant star

NASA recently announced the discovery of a new, Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a nearby star called TOI-700. We are two of the astronomers who led the discovery of this planet, called TOI-700 e. TOI-700 e is just over 100 light-years fro...

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