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Cosmic Ghosts Ghouls and Vampires
Astronomers use colorful language for cosmic objects. But unlike ghosts, ghouls and vampires in horror stories, the cosmic ones aren't scary late at night. Here are tales of the birth, evolution and death of stars, a blinking demon and a star that, at Halloween, seems like the Sun's ghost.
Distances in Space - Facts for Kids
How tall are you? How far away is New York City? How far away is the Moon? How about the nearest planet, star, or galaxy? Do we measure them in inches, kilometers or light years? Find out why we choose some measuring units and not others.
Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013
Gasp at the Galaxy's starry glow. Be awed by aurorae. Marvel at meteors. Be dazzled by deep space. It's the Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013 competition winners. The exhibition was in Greenwich, England, but the pictures are still online.
Full Meridian of Glory - book review
What was the Paris Meridian? The “Full Meridian of Glory” tells its story and the stories of those who surveyed it. It's a saga of love and betrayal, dedication and deprivation, heroism and pettiness, and sometimes death. Truth really is stranger than fiction.
Comets - Facts for Kids
People once thought that comets were the messengers of major disasters. Today we know that they are visitors from the most distant regions of the Solar System. Other stars have exoplanets and they seem to have exocomets too.
Galileo's Daughter - book review
Most people think of Galileo as the man who is a symbol of the heroic voice of truth against a powerful reactionary Church. However this mythic Galileo is not the one Dava Sobel's book, "Galileo's Daughter", reveals through his faith, his work and his daughter's love.
Voyagers - Preparing for the Grand Tour
In 2013 Voyager 1 became the first starship as it slipped into interstellar space, the space between the Sun and the stars. What was a NASA probe doing twelve billion miles from home? What was the origin of its 36-year mission?
Centaurus the Centaur
Half-man, half-horse, Centaurus strides across the southern sky. Its myths and legends go back thousands of years and it's full of marvelous sights. Planets, black holes, an enormous diamond and colliding galaxies are just some of them.
Maria Mitchell was a true pioneer woman. She didn't brave a physical wilderness. Hers was the harder job of pioneering higher education for women. She was the first American woman to discover a comet, the first to be elected to scientific societies and the first woman professor of astronomy.
Once in a Blue Moon
"Once in a blue moon" is a common English expression and it refers to a rare event. But why a blue Moon? And what is a blue Moon if it isn't blue? There is no unique answer, but here are a few things it could be.
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