News: Page 1
C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy) Reaches Naked Eye Visibility
December 28, 2014 - A new comet, C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy), has brightened more quickly than anticipated. Discovered in August, it was originally expected to peak at a fairly dim magnitude 8, but the comet has already reached magnitude 5.1, having brightened for the past several months at a rate of n=9.5 (where n=2 for a simple reflecting body like an asteroid). If the present rate of brightening continues, we anticipate a... Read more...
Comet Jacques Returns
July 14, 2014 - After spending a month on the far side of the Sun, comet C/2014 E2 (Jacques) is back, now in the morning sky. It's presently hovering at around magnitude 6 to 7 and will remain so for the rest of the month as it climbs higher. This difference image by NASA's STEREO A spacecraft on July 11 shows a better view from the far side of the Sun (click for more images from STEREO): The tail s... Read more...
New Supernova in M82
January 22, 2014 - A new supernova was discovered January 22, 2014 in the nearby galaxy M82 located in the constellation Ursa Major. Based on pre-discovery observations, the supernova had been brightening since about a week prior to being reported. The supernova was observed to be magnitude 14 on the 15th, reached 13 by the 17th and has since brightened to magnitude 12 at discovery. Recent observations suggest the s... Read more...
Nova in Delphinus
August 16, 2013 - A new star has appeared in the little-known constellation of Delphinus, the dolphin -- except it's not really a new star per-se. It's actually a white dwarf -- the age-old remnant of a long-deceased star that had used up all its fuel temporarily bursting back into life with bang as material raining down from its alive-and-well companion destabilizes its structure causing an explosion known as a no... Read more...
Solar Cycle 24: Solar Maximum
July 25, 2013 - Solar cycle 24 is believed to be approaching solar maximum at the present time. This cycle is predicted to be the weakest in 100 years and is predicted by some researchers to mark the end of the Modern Maximum period in solar activity that dominated the 20th century. This weak solar maximum, at just half the strength of the previous one, followed the deepest solar minimum in over a century. Dur... Read more...
C/2012 S1 (ISON): Updates from Spitzer
July 24, 2013 - Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON), popularly known as just Comet ISON, had been, at the time of its discovery in 2012, been referred to as the "Comet of the Century." Since then, the comet has experienced a downturn in activity, falling behind predictions by 2 magnitudes in brightness (a factor of six) by Spring of 2013. In the past few weeks, the comet passed behind the Sun, as viewed from Earth, and thus, ... Read more...
Upcoming Comets
March 03, 2013 - The year 2013 is headed to a strong start as a year of comets. There are already two bright comets visible without optical aid with a third on its way for the end of the year. C/2011 L4 (PANSTARRS) C/2011 L4 was discovered all the way back in June of 2011 by the Pan-STARRS team in Hawaii. The comet was originally on track to be magnitude -1 this month, but its brightening trend slowed during ... Read more...
Quadrantids, 2013
December 31, 2012 - The new year is almost here again and that means the return of the Quadrantid meteor shower. The shower is named for the now-defunct constellation Quadrans Muralis from where meteors of the shower appear to radiate from. A clear view of this radiant is optimal but unnecessary as meteors may appear throughout the sky. The Quadrantids are characterized by a very short peak period of just a few ho... Read more...
Perseids Meteor Shower, 2012
July 24, 2012 - The annual Perseids meteor shower has once again begun. This year's display is expected to be a normal one, peaking on August 12, 2012 at 12-14:00 UTC with a maximum zenith hourly rate of about 100 meteors, or about 1.7 meteors every minute. A waning crescent moon will rise an hour past local midnight in the Northern Hemisphere which may interfere with observations. A daily Perseids rate chart sho... Read more...
Caglow Website Update
July 22, 2012 - A few weeks ago, the Caglow website turned three years old. During those three years, the site received only a few additions such as the projects section, the info pages and the image gallery. Much of the site, including the overall design and structure stayed the same. So with its fourth year in progress, the site needed an update. The most prominent change is that logo has been updated with a... Read more...
Pluto With 5 Moons
July 12, 2012 - It wasn't all that long ago when scientists using the Hubble Space Telescope discovered a fourth moon on Pluto. Now, less than one year later, a fifth moon has showed up. Provisionally named S/2012 P 1, the moon is less than 25 km in diameter and orbits ~42000 km from Pluto making it the second closest known moon to Pluto. The New Horizons spacecraft is expected to arrive at the Pluto system in... Read more...
Transit of Venus, 2012
June 04, 2012 - In under 24 hours, Venus will begin its journey across the face of the Sun as seen from the Earth. Such transits last about 6.5 hours and generally occur in pairs separated by 8 years which are in turn, separated by gaps of 105.5 and 122.5 years. The upcoming transit is the second of an 8 year pair with the first having occurred on June 08, 2004. The following transit after this one will occur on ... Read more...
June, 2012 Lunar Eclipse
May 28, 2012 - With so much attention being focused on the June 5 Transit of Venus, the June 4 partial lunar eclipse has gone almost unnoticed. The reason for this is quite simple: it is a partial lunar eclipse. In other words, not only does this eclipse occur during the middle of the night when everyone is asleep but the moon is not even completely covered making the effort to be awake seem all the less rewardi... Read more...
May, 2012 Solar Eclipse
May 12, 2012 - On May 20, 2012, an annular solar eclipse will be visible to those positioned along its path which runs from Hong Kong to Texas. During this eclipse, the moon will be too small to fully cover up the sun and so will instead leave a ring of sun visible referred to as an annulus. Those located up to several thousand miles from the central track from thr North Pole to Hawaii will be able to see a part... Read more...
Solar Activity Jump
March 10, 2012 - The Sun has entered into another active period with a spike in the number of strong solar flares and geomagnetic storms. In the past week, numerous M-class flares have taken place topped by an X5 flare in the middle of the week. There has not been any further X-class flaring but the M-class flares continue. In fact, an M8.4 flare is currently (18:25 UT, March 10, 2012) in progress. Flares in th... Read more...
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