Northern Skies

The Sky This Month - July 2018

The Milky Way and Big Bold Mars

Opposed to the Big Dipper that is seen all year round, Sagittarius the Archer appears low in the south skies for only a few months. With so many celestial objects to hunt down, we definitely have our work cut out.

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The Sky This Month - June 2018

Bootes And Serpens

This month the constellation Bootes is high in the sky and just past the meridian. Its prominent star called Arcturus is 37 light years (ly) away and shines at zero magnitude. Simply follow the stars in the Big Dipper’s handle as it arcs down to Arcturus. This spectral class K0 supergiant shines 113 times brighter than our Sun measure 26 solar diameters across or one quarter the size of the orbit of Mercury.

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The Sky This Month - May 2018

A Time For Galaxies

The most abundant celestial objects to hunt are galaxies. Of the estimated two trillion galaxies that make up the known universe, the average telescope has the ability to see only a small tiny of this number. The New General Catalogue (NGC) contains 7,840 objects with more that 80% being galaxies. Mind you, the catalogue encompasses both north and south hemispheres.

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The Sky This Month - April 2018

Hydra

Hydra is the largest constellation in the night sky measuring 104 arc minutes in length and takes up 1,303 square degrees in area. This constellation is dotted with numerous galaxies, nebulae and star clusters

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The Sky This Month - March 2018

Moving into Spring,

One of the fainter constellations located in the sky this time of year is Cancer the Crab. Consisting of six moderately bright stars, one would have a difficult time searching for it in highly lit suburban skies. A great aid is first locating the main stars of Gemini the Twins namely Castor and Pollux off to the Crab’s right. Under country skies on a moonless night, the Cancer is easier to find along with its premiere object – M44, the Beehive Cluster.

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The Sky This Month - February 2018

Lepus the Hare

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The Sky This Month - January 2018

Canis Major

Most of the constellations we see can be located from moderate light polluted skies. If you are new to astronomy, this is a good way to study the constellations which are highlighted for the most part by bright stars. Once you move to the dark countryside on a moonless night, standing under two thousand stars can be overwhelming.

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The Sky This Month - December 2017

Taurus the Bull

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The Sky This Month - November 2017

Pegasus

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The Sky This Month - October 2017

Aquarius 

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