Night Sky Calendar - Northern Hemisphere
November 2009
Celestial Object

02 - Full Moon at 19:14 UT
05 - Taurid (south) meteor shower peaks. Active between 25 Sept and 25 Nov.
000 Associated with Comet 2P/Encke.
09 - Moon near Mars (morning sky) at 14h UT. Mag. +0.3.
12 - Taurid (north) meteor shower peaks. May produce the occasional bright fireball.
17 - Leonid meteor shower peaks at 9h UT. Arises from debris ejected by
000 Comet Tempel-Tuttle in 1533. Expect about 25 to 30 meteors per hour under
000 dark skies. Predictions of enhanced activity between 21-22h UT on 17 Nov
000 (favours sky watchers in Asia).
21 - Alpha Monocerotid meteor shower peaks at 15:25 UT. A usually minor
000 shower active 15-25 Nov. Radiant is near Procyon. Predictions of enhanced
000 activity this year. Timing favours Far East Asia, Australia and across the
000 Pacific to Alaska.
00 0 0 0 0 0// Get the complete calendar version at skymaps.com
7 -

The photo was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope and shows a detail of the nebula. This close-up shows a dense cloud of dust and gas, a stellar nursery full of embryonic stars. This cloud is about 8 light-years away from the nebula's central star, not shown in this picture. Located in Sagitarius, the nebula's name means "divided into three lobes".


Wednesday, October 18, 2006

 Hubble's View of Colliding Galaxies 

Image Credit: ESA/NASA

A new Hubble image of the Antennae galaxies is the sharpest yet of this
merging pair of galaxies. As the two galaxies smash together, thousand
of millions of stars are born, mostly in groups and clusters of stars. View the larger size here.

Full Story
Image Credit: ESA/NASA

Posted @ 1:39 PM by kinzi


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

 Confirmed by Hubble, Epsilon Eridani B is the Closest Exoplanet 

The planet that detected in 2000 and orbiting a Sun-like star is confirmed to co-exist with debris disks around the parent star. The planet orbits its star, Epsilon Eridani, every 6.9 years and has 1.5 times the mass of Jupiter. The star is located 10.5 light years away, that makes this planet to be the closest extrasolar planet to us. Observation from Hubble indicated that this star is young, only 800 million years old that is why it still retains its debris disk.

Epsilon Eridani has long captivated the attention of science fiction writers, as well as astronomers. In 1960, years before the first extrasolar planet was detected, astronomer Frank Drake listened for radio transmissions from inhabitants of any possible planets around Epsilon Eridani as part of Project Ozma's search for intelligent extraterrestrial life. In the fictional "Star Trek" universe, Epsilon Eridani is considered by some fans to be the parent star for the planet Vulcan, Mr. Spock's home.

Full Story...

Posted @ 7:08 PM by kinzi


Thursday, October 05, 2006

 Hubble Survey Finds Numbers of Extrasolar Planets 

A Hubble Survey called the Sagittarius Window Eclipsing Extrasolar Planet Search (SWEEPS) yielded a finding of Jupiter-sized planets orbiting very close to their parent stars in the central region of our galaxy. The survey covers 180.000 stars. The astronomers used a planet transit technique for the planet findings. Among the those new exoplanets, one has the shortest orbital period, named SWEEPS-10, swings around its star in 10 hours. Located only 740,000 miles from its star, the planet is among the hottest ever detected. It has an estimated temperature of approximately 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

More Story

Posted @ 2:40 PM by kinzi


 Hubble Eyes Dark Clouds on Uranus 

Hubble spotted dark cloud formation in Uranus atmosphere. Measuring 1,100 miles by 1,900 miles (1,700 kilometers by 3,000 kilometers), the dark cloud is located at a latitude of 27 degrees in Uranus's northern hemisphere, which is just now becoming fully exposed to sunlight after many years of being in shadow. The development of a dark spot may be a signal of the oncoming uranian northern spring, said researchers.

Image Credit: NASA

More Story

Posted @ 2:35 PM by kinzi


Sunday, October 01, 2006

 NASA's New Mars Camera Gives Dramatic View of Planet 

Mars is ready for its close-up. The highest-resolution camera ever to orbit Mars is returning low-altitude images to Earth from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.Rocks and surface features as small as armchairs are revealed in the first image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter since the spacecraft maneuvered into its final, low-altitude orbital path. The imaging of the red planet at this resolution heralds a new era in Mars exploration.

The image of a small fraction of Mars' biggest canyon reached Earth on Friday,
the beginning of a week of tests for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment
and other instruments on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. "We are elated at the sharpness of the image, revealing such fine detail in the landscape," said Dr. Alfred McEwen of the University of Arizona, Tucson, who is the principal investigator for this camera. The target area includes the deepest part of Ius Chasma, one portion of the vast Valles Marineris canyon. Valles Marineris is the largest known canyon in the solar system, as long as the distance from California to New York.

The image is available online at

and http://hiroc.lpl.arizona.edu/images/TRA/TRA_000823_1720/

The camera returned test images after Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter went into orbit around Mars on March 10, 2006, but those were from altitudes more than eight times as high as the orbiter is flying now. Since March, the spacecraft has shrunk its orbit by dipping more than 400 times into the top of the Martian atmosphere to shave
velocity. It is now flying in its final, nearly circular orbit at altitudes of 250 to 316 kilometers (155 to 196 miles). The orbit will remain this shape and size for the mission's two-year primary science phase, which begins in November.

During its primary science phase, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter will return more data about the red planet than all previous missions combined, pouring data to Earth at about 10 times the rate of any earlier Mars spacecraft. Scientists will analyze the information to gain a better understanding of the distribution and history of
Mars' water - whether ice, vapor or liquid - and of the processes that formed and modified the planet's surface. In addition to the high-resolution camera, the orbiter's science payload includes a mineral-identifying spectrometer, a ground-penetrating radar, a context camera for imaging wide swaths of the surface, a wide-angle color imager for monitoring the entire planet daily, and an instrument for mapping and monitoring water vapor
and other constituents in the atmosphere.

For most of October, Mars will be passing nearly behind the sun from Earth's perspective. Communication will be intermittent. Activities will be minimal for Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and other spacecraft at Mars during this time, and they will resume in early November.

JPL Newsletter

Posted @ 9:01 PM by kinzi



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    ryan kinzi
    Nightsky calendar (a brief version) by Skymaps & NASA's Space Calendar | Image of FCO - credit: NASA. Design & page layout © kinzi - 2009 | Contact me? xeno@(no-spam)cougars.com


    Trifid Nebula
    M20 | NGC 6514
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    The Oort cloud, is a postulated spherical cloud of comets situated about 50,000 to 100,000 AU from the Sun. This is approximately 1000 times the distance from the Sun to Pluto or roughly one light year, almost a quarter of the distance from the Sun to Proxima Centauri, the star nearest the Sun. The Oort cloud would have its inner disk at the ecliptic from the Kuiper belt. Although no direct observations have been made of such a cloud, it is believed to be the source of most or all comets entering the inner solar system (some short-period comets may come from the Kuiper belt), based on observations of the orbits of comets.
    Source: Wikipedia

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