The reduced sunlight strength sufficiently cools the air above us that it’s increasingly common to stand below clouds made not of water droplets, but bits of ice. These crystals are almost always six-sided and have very specific (and glorious) effects on sunlight hitting them. One of them is to create the common 22° halo.
Almanac Weekly | Night Sky
The start of fall arrives with the autumnal equinox next Wednesday, September 22 at 3:21 p.m. That’s when the midday Sun hovers directly over the equator so that neither of Earth’s hemispheres gets more sunlight than the other.
This coming Tuesday, the 14th, Neptune reaches its closest approach to us for the year. It’s an enormous blue ball big enough to let 58 planet Earths fit inside.
Researchers recently found the farthest-ever galaxy, a Hubble smudge at a distance of around 13 billion light years.
Light determines what we see and know. But what is it?
Coastal civilizations forever noticed that the ocean’s rhythmic rise and fall mostly followed the Moon’s position. But how could this be? We orbit the huge massive Sun, not the lightweight Moon. Why should the Sun have the dominant gravitational effect on us — and yet the Moon boasts the greater tidal pull?
August is when the sky transitions from its least number of faint stars (in the spring) to its greatest number, from September through December.
One planet never disappoints. Through any telescope with more than 30x, Saturn elicits gasps. Oddly enough, photos of the ringed world do not pack the same punch. You have to see it for yourself.
You simply can’t travel far enough to escape Earth’s gravity.
What’s the most romantic gift for your sweetheart? A book of poetry? A candlelight dinner? Excellent choices — but as a nightcap, what’s better than the Goddess of Love in person?