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Seeing in the Dark - book review
Does amateur equal incompetence? No, says Timothy Ferris in a superb book exploring the role of amateur astronomers in probing the heavens. He reminds us that the root of the word amateur is love, and interweaves the stories of these lovers of astronomy with a grand tour of the universe.
Searching for Extrasolar Planets
Only a few dozen planets orbiting stars outside the Solar System were directly imaged. But astronomers have discovered nearly nine hundred of them. How do they find what they can't see?
Science Fair Astronomy Projects
Attention, educators and students! Need help with astronomy ideas for a science fair? Wonder about how to do a project or investigation? Here are some useful sites with suggestions for astronomy-themed projects, as well as plenty of how-to on researching and presenting work.
Saturn Facts for Kids
Saturn is golden in the sky, and a telescope shows a ring system to take your breath away. If you could find enough water Saturn would float, and its moons are amazing. But if you don't like freezing weather, 1000-mph winds and lightning storms the size of continental USA, don't plan any visits.
Royal Observatory Greenwich
It's the place where time begins: The Royal Observatory, Greenwich, England. Here you can stand on the Prime Meridian of the world with one foot in the western hemisphere and the other in the eastern hemisphere. It represents over three hundred years of astronomical and maritime history.
Royal Observatory Cape of Good Hope
Why did the British government in 1820 want to build an astronomical observatory eight thousand miles from home? Which astronomers are buried on the premises and which one went home after a year in the "dismal swamp"? Here are some of the stories of the Royal Observatory at the Cape of Good Hope.
Royal Greenwich Observatory Photography 2010
An ancient tree is young compared to the center of the Galaxy. The Sun shines through dark clouds as a perfect ring in an annular eclipse. These are two of the dazzling images in the Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition 2010. You can see the exhibition online.
Rhea Moon of Saturn
Rhea was Saturn's wife in classical mythology. Rhea the moon zips around Saturn in four and a half days. Although it has an oxygen atmosphere, we won't be moving there anytime soon. Even in direct sunlight, it's -281 degrees Fahrenheit and the "atmosphere" is similar to a vacuum on Earth.
Quasar Facts for Kids
Quasars are the brightest and most distant objects in the universe. And when we see them we are looking into the past, to a time even before our Sun and Solar System existed.
Polaris - 10 Fascinating Facts
Today we travel paved roads using good maps or a GPS system to find the way. Imagine sailing uncharted waters or journeying through trackless deserts without such help. In the northern hemisphere one of the greatest of navigational aids has for nearly two thousand years been the north star Polaris.
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