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The Sky This Month - October 2007

Milky Way (North)


We have all enjoyed the long months of summer, especially the awe-inspiring views of the Milky Way Galaxy. This mystical glow of millions of distant suns now stands directly overhead as the sky darkens and sets before the break of dawn. This is also your last chance to catch Scorpius, the planet Jupiter and Sagittarius in that order, located in south-west skies.


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The Sky This Month - October 2009

A Real Time Lunar Impact


On the morning of October 9th, the Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) will crash land into the moon. Is this spacecraft out of control you might ask? On the contrary. This deliberate impact is a planned end to a mission that had a bit of a hiccup last month.


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The Sky This Month - November 2008

Cetus – A Whale Of A Constellation

This month’s constellation plays a role in the famous mythological story called the “Royal Family of Constellations”. As the fable went, King Cepheus and Queen Cassiopeia sacrificed their daughter Andromeda to the Sea Monster, Cetus. Our hero Perseus happened by with his slain prize - the Medusa’s head, stowed in a potato sack.

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The Sky This Month - November 2007

What a Comet !!!


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The Sky This Month - November 2009

The Legend Continues


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The Sky This Month - May 2009

The Leo/Virgo/Coma Galaxy Fest

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The Sky This Month - May 2008

The High Riding Bear

About an hour after sunset local – lookup, way up. What greets you is the most recognized constellation in the sky, Ursa Major – aka the Big Dipper or Big Bear. Taking up 1,280 square degrees of sky, it ranks third behind first-place Hydra and second place Libra. With the great beast prancing overhead, you will have a great opportunity to examine its many galaxies through the least amount of atmospheric turbulence and distortion.

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The Sky This Month - March 2009

Thanks Charles

The name Charles Messier is familiar with amateur and professional astronomers alike. Charles was bitten by the astronomy bug in his younger years, similar to the same way we got hooked on the wonders of the night sky. He had an early passion for the stars and such but two spectacular events swayed him to his future. First was the jaw-dropping Great Comet of 1744. It was discovered independently in December of 1743 by Dirk Klinkenberg and then four days later by Jean-Philippe de Chéseaux.

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The Sky This Month - March 2008

A Faint Constellation


The Winter Triangle consists of three bold, bright suns named Betelgeuse, Sirius and Procyon which are the alpha stars belonging to Orion, Canis Major, and Canis Minor respectively. These guideposts are amongst the eighteen brightest stars that make up the winter sky - Taurus, Auriga, Gemini, and the three previously mentioned constellations. However, embedded in this triangle is a dim constellation called Monoceros. In fact, its alpha star only registers magnitude 4.1, but somehow the asterism depicts a Unicorn.

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The Sky This Month - July 2008

Globulars A-Plenty


Over the course of the past few months, I have pointed out one or two globular clusters associated with a particular constellation. However, as the months' tick by, we come to that time of year where these starry blobs containing tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of stars are seen in greater numbers. One reason why summertime is best for viewing globular clusters is they tend to populate in most part, around the heart of our galaxy, near the nucleus.


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