Give me a lever long enough and a place to stand and I can move the Earth

— Archimedes 200 BC

Blogs

A Trip Through the Milky Way

A Trip Through the Milky Way

By Jane Houston Jones and Jessica Stoller-Conrad


Feeling like you missed out on planning a last vacation of summer? Don’t worry—you can still take a late summertime road trip along the Milky Way!

The waning days of summer are upon us, and that means the Sun is setting earlier now. These earlier sunsets reveal a starry sky bisected by the Milky Way. Want to see this view of our home galaxy? Head out toyour favorite dark sky getaway or to the darkest city park or urban open space you can find.

While you’re out there waiting for a peek at the Milky Way, you’ll also have a great view of the planets in our solar system. Keep an eye out right after sunset and you can catch a look at Venus. If you have binoculars or a telescope, you’ll see Venus’s phase change dramatically during September—from nearly half phase to a larger, thinner crescent.

Dimming stars, erupting plasma, and beautiful nebulae


Dimming stars, erupting plasma, and beautiful nebulae

By Marcus Woo

 

Boasting intricate patterns and translucent colors, planetary nebulae are among the most beautiful sights in the universe. How they got their shapes is complicated, but astronomers think they've solved part of the mystery—with giant blobs of plasma shooting through space at half a million miles per hour.

Planetary nebulae are shells of gas and dust blown off from a dying, giant star. Most nebulae aren't spherical, but can have multiple lobes extending from opposite sides—possibly generated by powerful jets erupting from the star.

The Loneliest Galaxy In The Universe

Spaceplace LogoThe Loneliest Galaxy In The Universe

By Ethan Siegel

 

How we know Mars has liquid water on its surface

How we know Mars has liquid water on its surface

Solar Wind Creates—and Whips—a Magnetic Tail Around Earth

Pluto Revealed!

Pluto July 13

 

Here is the best image of Pluto before its historic flyby of Pluto. This image was taken on July 13 and released on the morning of July 14.

 

New Horizons Plans to Return to Normal Science Operations

July 5, 2015New Horizons Plans July 7 Return to Normal Science Operations

Supercharged Large Hadron Collider Tackles Universe's Big Questions

Ramped up in power after a two-year upgrade, the world’s most powerful particle accelerator is once again doing science. Following its official restart on June 3, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, Europe’s particle-physics lab near Geneva, Switzerland, can smash protons together faster and with higher energies than during its first run, which ended in February 2013. Our graphical guide illuminates the discoveries that could lie ahead in the next run of the LHC.

 

Telescope Night Cancelled

Telescope Night for Feb 26, 2015 is cancelled due to poor weather conditions

Telescope Night Cancelled due to exteme weather conditions

Telescope Night for Feb 19, 2015 is cancelled due to extreme weather conditions. (Single dit temps and strong winds.)