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The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) is Now Available On Amazon

September 18, 2014 Leave a comment

The Astronomical Year

The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019)

Designed for astronomers of all levels, the almanac provides details of thousands of astronomical events from 2015 through to 2019.

Written by a former freelance writer for Astronomy magazine, the guide includes almost daily data and information on the Moon and planets, as well as Pluto, Ceres, Pallas, Juno and Vesta.

  • The phases of the Moon
  • Conjunctions between the Moon, planets and asteroids (including angular separation for conjunctions involving the planets and asteroids.)
  • Lunar and Solar eclipses
  • Annual summaries of when to observe the planets and asteroids
  • Annual summaries of notable close planetary conjunctions
  • Peak dates for the major meteor showers with moon phase
  • Dates of perihelion, aphelion, perigee and apogee for the planets and asteroids
  • Inferior and Superior conjunction for Mercury and Venus
  • Greatest Eastern and Western elongation for Mercury and Venus
  • Opposition and solar conjunction dates for the outer planets and asteroids
  • Apparent diameter…

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Categories: Uncategorized

2015 Astronomical Guide Now Available As Free Download


2015 An Astronomical Year - CoverTo commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, 2015 An Astronomical Year is now available as a free download between July 20th and July 24th.

This comprehensive, quick reference guide provides nearly 300 pages of night sky events for 2015, including many that are easily visible with just the naked eye.

To download your copy, go to:

(US) http://www.amazon.com/2015-Astronomical-Year-Reference-Astronomy-ebook/dp/B00LVEUJI2

(UK) http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00LVEUJI2

 

AstroNews – Under New Management

July 27, 2012 2 comments

Hello folks,

Without trying to sound like Steve Jobs, I’ve realised the day has come when I just can’t keep AstroNews running any more. My work and personal commitments have left me with little or no time on a daily basis to keep up with the blog, and so, it’s with great regret that I’m “standing down.”

That being said, George Arnold had graciously agreed to step into my shoes; I don’t know if it will be something permanent for him, but he’s willing to see how things go.

I’m sure George will want to make some improvements and he’s free to make whatever changes he sees fit; I’m completely confident that he’ll do the right thing and give AstroNews the attention it deserves.

If you’d like to contribute in some way, I’m sure he’ll appreciate the help – you can either leave a comment below or email me at astronews.us@gmail.com

It might take a few weeks for the transition to fully take place, so please bear with us during the change. Your best option would be to visit this blog to keep up with the latest news, as I know George will be posting stories here regularly.

Otherwise, i’d like to thank everyone for their support – I truly appreciate it – and I want to sincerely wish George the very best for the future.

Clear skies – and ad astra!

Richard

Categories: Site News

NASA Lends Ultraviolet Space Telescope to Caltech


Caltech has taken over operation from NASA of the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX), a space telescope that for the last nine years has been surveying the cosmos in ultraviolet light. In this first agreement of its kind, NASA is lending the telescope to Caltech, which has led the mission and will continue operating and managing it through the support of private funders.

Launched in April 2003, GALEX was designed to study how galaxies change and evolve over time. Because young, high-mass stars are especially hot, they radiate a lot of ultraviolet light, meaning that the brighter the ultraviolet light from a galaxy, the faster its stars are forming. By observing in ultraviolet wavelengths, GALEX has been able to measure the formation rates of stars in millions of galaxies. The telescope has helped astronomers determine how the rates of star formation in other galaxies have changed over the last eight billion years and how that process leads to the evolution of those galaxies.

Now, GALEX is embarking on a new phase in its mission.

Full Story: http://features.caltech.edu/features/372

AstroNews Is Coming Back Online


Okay, so it’s been awhile but I’ve got some help and we’re looking to get AstroNews back up ‘n running today…

…so I want to say a big thanks to James Smith and George Arnold for volunteering and being willing and able to post some of the stories for me.

Thanks guys, it’s very much appreciated!

Clear skies,

Richard

Categories: Site News

AstroNews Needs Your Help

April 30, 2012 1 comment

Okay, so here’s the deal…

I need help maintaining this blog. I can’t do this on my own.

Unfortunately, I just don’t have the time to update AstroNews anymore… there are a couple of reasons why…

  1. The number of daily stories seems to be increasing
  2. I’ve been working some very odd hours recently and I just don’t know from one week to the next how much time I’ll have to work on the blog – or even when, for that matter.
  3. I’ve also had to travel for my work and that makes maintaining this blog difficult
  4. My personal time is also becoming more limited and I have to concentrate on other issues first…
  5. I have another blog, and for personal reasons, that blog has become pretty important to me and has to take priority right now.

I’ve thought long and hard about AstroNews and what to do with it… I don’t want to abandon it completely but I can’t keep this blog going by myself.

I know I’ve mentioned this before and unfortunately no one was able to help out… but I’m kinda down to the crunch now.

If there’s anyone out there, amongst the hundreds of people who read this on WordPress, follow the site on Twitter, like it on Facebook or watch for the news in the Windows sidebar gadget, who can help post stories, then please let me know. My email address will follow.

I’m not looking for anyone to take over the site, just to post stories on a completely voluntary basis. I may not be able to get you on the Press Release email distribution list from the American Astronomical Society, but I can forward the emails to you. You can also subscribe to news releases from NASA and check the news on the ESA’s website etc 🙂

So that’s about it… without help, AstroNews will be on hold until a point in the future when I can get it going again.

If you’d like to help, please feel free to email me at astronews.us “at” gmail.com

Thank you for your support,

Richard J.  Bartlett

International Dark Sky Week 14 – 20 April, 2012

April 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Celebrate the stars! Created in 2003 by high-school student Jennifer Barlow, IDSW has grown to become a worldwide event and a key component of Global Astronomy Month. The goals of IDSW are to appreciate the beauty of the night sky and to raise awareness of how poor-quality lighting creates light pollution.

Light pollution is a growing problem. Not only does it have detrimental effects on our views of the night sky, but it also disrupts the natural environment, wastes energy, and has the potential to cause health problems.

Full Story: http://www.darksky.org/idsw

NASA’s WISE Mission Sees Skies Ablaze With Blazars

April 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Astronomers are actively hunting a class of supermassive black holes throughout the universe called blazars thanks to data collected by NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). The mission has revealed more than 200 blazars and has the potential to find thousands more.

Blazars are among the most energetic objects in the universe. They consist of supermassive black holes actively “feeding,” or pulling matter onto them, at the cores of giant galaxies. As the matter is dragged toward the supermassive hole, some of the energy is released in the form of jets traveling at nearly the speed of light. Blazars are unique because their jets are pointed directly at us.

“Blazars are extremely rare because it’s not too often that a supermassive black hole’s jet happens to point towards Earth,” said Francesco Massaro of the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology near Palo Alto, Calif., and principal investigator of the research, published in a series of papers in the Astrophysical Journal. “We came up with a crazy idea to use WISE’s infrared observations, which are typically associated with lower-energy phenomena, to spot high-energy blazars, and it worked better than we hoped.”

Full Story: http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2012-103

NASA Goddard Engineers Testing Webb Telescope’s OSIM and BIA Instruments

April 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Image Credit: NASA Goddard/Chris Gunn

Image Credit: NASA Goddard/Chris Gunn

Several critical items related to NASA’s next-generation James Webb Space Telescope are being tested in the giant thermal vacuum test chamber at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

These photos show the OTE (Optical Telescope Element) Simulator or OSIM wrapped in a silver blanket on a platform, being lowered down into a vacuum chamber (called the Space Environment Simulator, or SES) by a crane to be tested to withstand the cold temperatures of space.

The OSIM simulates the Webb telescope for the purposes of testing the science instruments that will fly on the observatory. The OSIM itself will never fly into space, but it is a vital part of the testing program to verify that the science cameras and spectrographs will function as planned.

Full Story: http://www.nasa.gov/topics/technology/features/webb-osim.html

‘Time Machine’ Will Study the Early Universe

April 16, 2012 Leave a comment

A new scientific instrument, a “time machine” of sorts, built by UCLA astronomers and colleagues, will allow scientists to study the earliest galaxies in the universe, which could never be studied before.
The five-ton instrument, the most advanced and sophisticated of its kind in the world, goes by the name MOSFIRE (Multi-Object Spectrometer for Infra-Red Exploration) and has been installed in the Keck I Telescope at the W.M. Keck Observatory atop Mauna Kea in Hawaii.
MOSFIRE gathers light in infrared wavelengths — invisible to the human eye — allowing it to penetrate cosmic dust and see distant objects whose light has been stretched or “redshifted” to the infrared by the expansion of the universe.

Full Story: http://newsroom.ucla.edu/portal/ucla/time-machine-will-study-the-early-231810.aspx