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5 Sky Events This Week: Ice Giant, Lunar Wonder, Ex-Comet Shower

Sky-watchers get a chance to see a giant lunar wall, hunt down a distant world, and the moon makes for a convenient guidepost in hunting down a distant planet. Green Giant. Late night on Tuesday, January 7, the seventh planet from the Sun, Uranus, will pass near the moon. The green giant will appear about 9 degrees…

Skywatchers Enjoy Comet Bonanza

Backyard astronomers in the Northern Hemisphere get an eyeful this week, when four comets will be visible with binoculars or small telescopes in the early morning sky. First up, the most famous of the bunch is Comet ISON, which is currently speeding towards its close encounter with the sun on November 28. While it has…

5 Sky Events This Week: Morning Comets and Solar Eclipse

The Earth’s moon plays hide and seek with distant stars and our sun this week, and the nighttime sights include a double comet show in the pre-dawn skies. Lunar Trio. In the early morning hours of Tuesday, October 29 the moon will form a stunning triangular pattern with ruddy Mars and blue-white star Regulus in…

5 Sky Events This Week: Comet Buzzes Mars, False Dawn, Green Giant

As the calendar turns to a new month, sky-watchers get a chance to see not only a sprinkling of shooting stars and some ghostly glows, but also a distant gas giant in its best appearance of 2013. Comet buzzes Mars. In the predawn skies on Tuesday, October 1, famed Comet ISON (C/2012 S1) will be barnstorming…

Comet ISON: Pop or Fizzle?

Will the much talked about comet ISON, discovered by Russian amateur  astronomers last year, turn out to be what some are calling the ‘comet of the century’ ? Not likely, says one researcher who has just concluded a preliminary study using the latest observations of the icy interloper. (Related: “New Comet Discovered.”) Astronomer Ignacio Ferrin,…