October 12 2011 Astronomy Newsletter
Last weekend I was in the city of Bath, a beautiful Georgian city in the southwest of England. Its attractions are numerous, but one of my favorites is a house where William and Caroline Herschel lived, now a museum. My latest article tells you a bit about this interesting place.
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.
*Tonight the Moon looks smaller*
Tonight, October 12, the Moon is full and it's the smallest Moon of the year.
I think I'd better clarify this! Of course, no, the Moon doesn't change its size, but its apparent size can change. Tonight it's at apogee, which means at its farthest from us. In this picture you can compare the Moon at apogee with the Moon at perigee (at its closest to us): http://www.universetoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/twomoon-580x307.jpg Wow! Why don't we ever notice the difference? It's because we can't see two Moons at the same time and have no size references for the Moon, so it tends to look much the same when it's high in the sky.
*Landscapes and skies*
I can't resist the beautiful Arizona scenery, sunsets and starry nights. If you share my delight, Dustin Farrell's time lapse video is for you: http://vimeo.com/29950141 Be sure to put it on full screen. BTW if you're wondering how you can get so many stars during the day, you can't. The scenes that show stars and blue skies are shot by moonlight. Great effect!
That's all for now. Wishing you clear skies.
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