Today’s News of The Daily Star at a Glance provides you with all the latest information on Astronomy and the stars. You can find all the latest news from the Astronomical Society, the news on the NASA Space Program and much more in this article.
Sky at a Glance
Sky at a Glance is the weekly observing update from Sky and Telescope. This week’s offerings include a few of the more noteworthy astronomical events from the past month and some of the more memorable planetary pass-bys. While it’s still the season of Birak, it’s not yet peak time to take in the sights. The good news is that the sun is a relatively low-key luminary at night, albeit one that’s slowly fading away. Thankfully, January is a relatively warm month, with no smog to speak of. Aside from the usual suspects (Mars and Venus) there is a decent array of bright stars in the east before the sun sets. For those of us lucky enough to live on the fringes, the stars of the night are a close cousin.
As the sun drops, the stars of the night sky take center stage. While Mars is not yet on par with the stars of the night, it remains a bright orange beacon at night. Other notables are Venus, Saturn, and Jupiter, with the latter’s Galilean moons in full view for the observant astronomer in the flesh. On a clear night, you can even see the galaxies, if you know where to look.
Using your binoculars, a telescope, or a pair of cheapo binoculars, you should be able to see the stars of the night sky and the constellations of the night by the time you go to bed. To make things easier, a star chart may be helpful.
Astronomy in the news
Astronomy in the news: NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope – a mission to study exoplanets and distant galaxies – has dominated the American Astronomical Society meeting in Seattle. It is one of the most ambitious projects in astronomy.
The telescope is a 10-billion-dollar project that aims to image galaxies billions of light-years away from Earth. This mission will also look back to the early days of the universe.
A new study suggests that super-Earths may not be dangerous to planetary systems. Instead, they may be more habitable than Earth. These newly discovered planets have water oceans a few hundred miles deep. They’re 50 percent larger than Earth and have thousands of times more water.
In a paper published in Nature, an international team of astronomers found “normal” matter in the space between stars. The researchers concluded that this missing material was a result of the long-hidden process of star formation.
Using data from two of the most promising exoplanets, astronomers have observed that some of them are much larger than Earth. Their atmospheres might be denser, too. However, scientists aren’t sure what the atmospheres are made of.
One of the most exciting discoveries of the JWST mission was the discovery of a ‘black widow binary’. This type of rapidly spinning neutron star is slowly devouring its smaller companion star.
Astronomy in the stars
As you gaze at the sky tonight, keep in mind that there is a lot more to astronomy in the stars than just the ones you can see from Earth. In fact, scientists are using a vast array of telescopes to study hundreds of distant galaxies, as well as many of the stars in our own Milky Way galaxy.
The first astronomical survey of the entire night sky was conducted in 1887. Astronomers pooled images from telescopes across the globe and used the results to map the night sky.
Today, astronomers use a parallax experiment to determine the distance of a star from two different locations. This is the most accurate way to determine the distances of stars, but it’s still not perfect.
There are over a million variable stars in the night sky. These are stars that brighten and dim over time. They can last months or even weeks. Scientists have also spotted signals from the earliest stars in the Universe.
Many cultures around the world have used constellations to identify animals and gods. However, in modern times, astronomers have taken a more scientific approach to naming and identifying these constellations.
Most of the stars in the night sky are part of a constellation. Some are just stars, while others are part of asterisms, which are stars that aren’t a part of a constellation.