Jul 2
Reaching the Stars – Lots of Talk but No Walk
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There are lots of shows on TV that talk about traveling amongst the stars and, according to http://www.direct2tv.com, there are dozens of science and sci-fi channels that feature programs on the topic exclusively. There’s even a channel with a feed into the ISS (International Space Station).

Lots of people are talking about space travel but no one really seems to be doing anything about that. Many are happy to engage in Astronomy, which is what this blog mostly focuses on, which is the study of space and stars and planets – however no one seems ready to make that leap.

Part of the problems stems from the aftermath of the Space Race with the Soviets. Back in the day, we had a clear objective to put a man on the moon before our “enemies” could do it first. It was a petty and vain grab at supremacy that required lots of money and effort.

However, once we got to the moon, we found a rock. An enormous, round, crater-filled rock. After that, interest slowly sank. No one wanted to fun trips into space when we could send robots or satellites and even those initiatives take decades to complete.

Even now, when it seems like space travel and expansion are becoming less like possibilities and more like mandates, we see little movement. And one must wonder what the early pioneers of science fiction would say if they could see our space programs now.

May 14
How To Use a Telescope For Star Gazing
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While anyone can casually gaze up at the heavens with their naked eyes to enjoy the beauty of the stars and constellations, a person who is serious about getting involved in astronomy must use a telescope for stargazing. Here are some tips to help you use your telescope to its fullest capabilities.

Not every telescope is designed for stargazing. Some are designed for terrestrial use, and others are more suitable for viewing the Moon. For deep-space objects such as stars, distant planets, nebulae and galaxies, you must Read the rest of this entry »

Mar 26
Watching The Night Sky Through The Seasons
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If you are someone who loves the night sky, do not simply restrict yourself to days when it is warm. The summer skies are lovely, but do remember that you will find that the view changes depending on what time of year you are considering! The tilt of the Earth and our position relative to the sun affects the constellations and planets we can see.

Just because you are going out in the middle of winter does not mean that you need to be uncomfortable. Make sure that you have a soft place to sit, and bundle up. One accessory that many amateur astronomers cannot live without are fingerless gloves which have a mitten top that can be flipped over the bare fingers. This means that you can make delicate calibrations with your fingers while still staying warm.

Bring some food. A thermos can keep your food warm even on very chilly nights, and sometimes, having a thermos full of hot soup or hot chocolate can make your expedition much more comfortable.

When you are thinking about going stargazing, consider doing it in the spring, fall and winter as well as the summer. This is a fantastic way to see the world and everything it has to offer.

Jul 25
Learning To Tell The Seasons By The Stars
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In this modern day of overflowing information the need to determine anything without the help of some kind of technology may seem superfluous. In most cases there will never be a real need for an ability to tell time by the sun, or what time of year it is by the stars, and yet over the course of human history this ability has been paramount to humanity’s survival. Despite the lack of need there are still men and women who find watching Read the rest of this entry »

Jul 11
Interesting Facts About Constellation Stories
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The stars visible in the sky seem almost endless, but a handful of them have been recognized and viewed by generation after generation as something else. Each culture had its own views of the constellations and all of those shapes in the sky have some story behind their formation.

In the west most of our legends about the constellations come from the ancient Greeks and Romans. You may not know the true myths behind some of the most famous heavenly figures. Take Ursa Major (a.k.a. Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 26
Interesting Historical Facts Related To Astronomy
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Astronomy is one of the oldest forms of natural science. This type of science goes back to the times of Antiquity. Ancient scientists would tell the difference between different planets and star types because they thought of them as places for the gods. The very first form of astronomy used was during the Bronze Age, and there are plenty of stars which still have names from this era in time. The ancient Greeks thought of Astronomy as a different type of mathematics and were strongly for it. Many mathematicians and philosophers of the time including Aristotle and Plato believed Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 13
Things To Learn At a Planetarium
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For many, the summer means vacations, the beach, cookouts and warm weather. For a select few, summertime means clear nights when the stars are visible. When you can see stars, you see constellations.

A constellation is nothing more than a specific group of stars. Many have names, such as the Big Dipper, Little Dipper, Orion, Pegasus, etc. Finding and naming the constellations is a difficult task. Enter the planetarium.

A planetarium is a special theater that allows people to see what the night sky looks like. Cast against a dome, the entire sky is laid out before the viewer, Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 1
The Best Times To Visualize Star Patterns
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Each constellation has a certain season in which it can be viewed better compared to others. It is best to view stars during late evenings or early mornings.

During the winter, constellations can be seen which include the Orion which represents a hunter with a sword on his belt. The three stars located along the Orion’s belt are the Orion Nebula.

During the fall, constellations that can be seen include the Andromeda and the Pegasus Read the rest of this entry »

May 28
Learning The Names Of The Planets
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One of the joys of astronomy is studying the planets in our own solar system. Scientists used to list nine planets in rotation around our sun. Pluto was demoted to “dwarf planet” status in 2006. As such, there are now only eight planets in the local neighborhood that is our solar system.

Of those eight, the Earth is one. Most of the rest are named after Roman gods. Mercury is closest to the sun. It is small and hot, and it moves quickly around the Sun. Venus is Read the rest of this entry »

May 26
Necessary Supplies For Avid Star Gazing
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The number one most important supply for an avid star gazer is a telescope. However, it is important to know what type of telescope to get before you buy one. Often times, people end up wishing they had done better research because their telescope isn’t performing very well, or it cost way too much money than the star gazer would have wanted to spend.

However, as an avid star gazer, you’re more likely to not be satisfied with the telescope’s performance. If you are just getting into star gazing but your pretty sure that this Read the rest of this entry »

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