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BellaOnline's Astronomy Editor

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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

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Astronomy Books as Gifts
What about some astronomy-related books for presents? Here are some recommendations that include something for readers from eight to eighty and beyond. Maybe an astronomy book would suit somebody on your list.

Exploring Stars and Planets - book review
Looking for an astronomy book for readers 8-14? Philip's has a brand new edition of Ian Ridpath's best seller. Clearly written and illustrated with up-to-date images, it's the story of the Solar System. But there are also glimpses into galaxies, exploding stars and the history of the Universe.

Thanksgiving in Space
Many foods are associated with a traditional American Thanksgiving dinner. But what do you suppose would be on the menu for Thanksgiving in space? Would you have to squeeze turkey paste out of a tube and get gelatin-covered dessert cubes? No. Food has improved since the early days of space flight.

Volcanoes - Fire and Ice
A volcano can produce a fiery sky with ash and deadly gases. The biggest one on Earth is Mauna Loa, but it's dwarfed by Olympus Mons on Mars which is three times the height of Everest. There are many volcanoes in the Solar System, including ice volcanoes.

Could you survive unprotected in space
Movies show people being expelled unprotected into space - they explode, they freeze instantly, their blood boils. It's not a pretty sight. Would this actually happen? Not necessarily, but I wouldn't recommend trying it out.

George's Secret Key to the Universe - book review
In Lucy & Stephen Hawking's book, the hero George used to have a quiet life, but now he's trying to rescue his next door neighbor from a black hole. Here's a lively illustrated story, beautiful color images of the universe, and from the man who knows, a great explanation of what a black hole is.

Cosmic Halloween Tour
Join us on a Halloween astronomical tour. See a cosmic witch and cosmic ghosts, spiders and snakes, and fiery skull. But have no fear. It's a virtual tour and all these objects are a very long way away.

Exploring the Apollo Landing Sites
NASA sent the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) to the Moon to spy out sites for future manned missions. It doesn't look like they'll be sending anybody to the Moon, but LRO has documented the Apollo landing sites. Astronomy writer and space expert Ian Ridpath takes us to the Moon for a look.

Herschel Museum of Astronomy
In 1781 William Herschel was the first person in history to discover a new planet. He was observing in the back garden of his home in Bath, England. The house where history was made is a museum and its new Caroline Lucretia Gallery is named for William's sister, the first woman to discover a comet.

Exotic Exoplanets Tour
We're used to a tidy Solar System. But there are some pretty strange planets orbiting stars far, far away. On one it doesn't rain water, it rains rock. Another has the density of cork. One has a double sun. And what would you do with a diamond the size of a planet?

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