EYES TO THE SKY May 14 – 27, 2018

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As twilight deepens, the starlike light of bright Jupiter appears above the southeastern horizon. Jupiter climbs to its highest point around midnight, then descends toward the southwest. On May 8-9, Jupiter, Earth and the Sun lined up, a momentous celestial phenomenon known as “opposition.” Around this time of opposition, the planet is brightest for the […]

EYES TO THE SKY April 30 – May 13, 2018

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     The Northeast Astronomy Forum (NEAF) is a magnet for amateur astronomers, professionals and those simply curious about astronomy and space exploration. Over Earth Day weekend, which included worldwide Astronomy Day, April 21, I was one of thousands who streamed along the paths to NEAF venues on the Rockland Community College campus, an hour northwest […]

EYES TO THE SKY April 16 – 29, 2018

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Towers of house lights, office tower lights, store lights, floodlights, streetlights, car lights, stadium lights, illuminated signage, decorative lights. Artificial light at night, indoors and outdoors, is second nature to us. But now that we’ve conquered darkness we’re learning that darkness is necessary to life on Earth – and becoming scarce. For
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EYES TO THE SKY April 2 – 15, 2018

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The pattern of a great lion outlined in stars, from billowy mane to tucked tail, climbs in the east-southeast as darkness deepens on early spring evenings. The head of Leo the Lion is a broad arc of stars that leads down to the constellation’s brightest star, bluish-white Regulus, Latin for “little king.” Leo’s body stretches […]

EYES TO THE SKY March 19 – April 1, 2018

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Spring begins tomorrow when the Sun crosses the celestial equator from the southern to the northern hemisphere; the precise moment is 12:15pm EDT. Take part in the Vernal Equinox by observing sunrise due east at 7:00am, sunset due west at 7:07pm and the Sun at its highest point at midday, 1:03pm EDT While the Sun’s […]

EYES TO THE SKY

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Viewing all five naked-eye planets might fit more easily into our days with the beginning of Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) this coming Sunday, the 11th. Venus and Mercury appear in evening twilight, about half an hour after sunset, and sunset will be an hour later – artificially changed from 5:51pm today to nearly 7pm on […]

EYES TO THE SKY February 19 – March 4, 2018

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A rare and extraordinary celestial event in 2018 doesn’t require masterminding a trip to a faraway destination like many of us undertook last year to see the Great American Eclipse.   This year, between now and the end of July, a big change will be observable in the sky in our home location. Planet Earth […]

EYES TO THE SKY February 5 – 18, 2018

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Moonlight had streamed in the windows all night, at times brilliant, from a clear sky, then muted through haze or clouds and falling snow in the Berkshire countryside. It was the eve of the Super Blue Moon Eclipse. I was looking forward to going out at dawn to see the eclipse of the second full […]

Eyes to the Sky January 22 – February 4, 2018

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The Sun, our star, is returning to the northern hemisphere at a steady clip, rising noticeably north of its furthest south of east marker and setting north of its furthest southwest reach on the horizon. Each day, sunrise is a minute earlier and sunset a minute or two later. By February 4, we will enjoy […]

EYES TO THE SKY January 8 – 21, 2018

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The phrase “once in a blue moon” has evolved to describe an unusual occurrence. True blue-colored moons are rare, for example, the moon may appear blue when seen through volcanic or fire ash in the atmosphere. In popular astronomy, a Blue Moon is the second of two full moons in a month. January’s first full […]