test

Jack Horkheimer: Star Gazer

Star Gazer is the world's only weekly television series on naked eye astronomy. Each weekly episode features selected objects for naked eye viewing for the following week. This video podcast contains the 10 most recent episodes of Jack Horkheimer: Star Gazer.

FaviconStar Gazers 1 Min. Dec. 30, 2013- Jan 5, 2013 13 Nov 2013, 4:10 pm

Here Comes The Sun

(video/mpeg)

FaviconStar Gazers 5 Min. Dec. 30, 2013- Jan 5, 2013 13 Nov 2013, 4:09 pm

Here Comes The Sun

(video/mpeg)

FaviconStar Gazers 1 Min. Dec. 23-29, 2013 13 Nov 2013, 4:08 pm

Bye-Bye Venus,Good-bye And Celebrate The New Year With The New Year's Eve Star

(video/mpeg)

FaviconStar Gazers 5 Min. Dec. 23-29, 2013 13 Nov 2013, 4:06 pm

Bye-Bye Venus,Good-bye And Celebrate The New Year With The New Year's Eve Star

(video/mpeg)

FaviconStar Gazers 1 Min. Dec. 16-22, 2013 13 Nov 2013, 4:03 pm

Off To The Races With Venus And Jupiter

(video/mpeg)

Science @ NASA Feature Stories Podcast

The mission of Science@NASA is to help the public understand how exciting NASA research is and to help NASA scientists fulfill their outreach responsibilities.

FaviconGeminid Meteors Defy Explanation 9 Dec 2010, 3:00 pm

The annual Geminid meteor shower peaks this year on Dec. 13th and 14th. Researchers don't fully understand the Geminids, and new measurements make it more mysterious than ever.

Please vote for this podcast at PodcastAlley!

Get this podcast story.

(audio/mpeg; 3.66 MB)

Favicon"Arsenic-Bug" Redefines Life as We Know It 2 Dec 2010, 3:00 pm

NASA-supported researchers have discovered the first known microorganism on Earth able to thrive and reproduce using the toxic chemical arsenic. The microorganism, which lives in California's Mono Lake, substitutes arsenic for phosphorus in the backbone of its DNA.

Please vote for this podcast at PodcastAlley!

Get this podcast story.

(audio/mpeg; 3.66 MB)

FaviconAlien Comets Invade the Solar System 23 Nov 2010, 3:00 pm

Some of the comets in our Solar System probably came from other stars, according to new research by NASA-supported scientists. Studying these 'alien' comets, they say, could reveal new information about stellar systems far, far away.

Please vote for this podcast at PodcastAlley!

Get this podcast story.

(audio/mpeg; 3.66 MB)

FaviconHubble Observes Possible Asteroid Collision 13 Oct 2010, 2:00 am

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has captured rare images of a suspected asteroid collision. The snapshots show a bizarre X-shaped object at the head of a comet-like trail of material. Their findings will be published in the Oct. 14th issue of Nature.

Please vote for this podcast at PodcastAlley!

Get this podcast story.

(audio/mpeg; 3.18 MB)

StarDate Online

FaviconDistant Hub 30 Sep 2014, 1:00 am

27,000 years ago, Earth was locked in an Ice Age. Glaciers covered much of North America, and sea level was hundreds of feet lower than it is today. People were painting in caves and on canyon walls, and they were developing such weapons as the bow and arrow.

Scientists have pieced together that view of the ancient past through centuries of excavations and lab work. But they can see one remnant of that time directly — the light from the heart of the Milky Way galaxy.

That illustrates the vastness of our home galaxy. Light travels at 670 million miles per hour — almost six million million miles in a year. Yet it takes light about 27,000 years to cross the great gulf from the galactic center to Earth, which is a little more than half-way out to the galaxy’s edge. So if a star explodes in the galactic center tonight, no one on Earth will see the fireworks for another 27,000 years.

Unfortunately, we can’t see the center of the Milky Way with our eyes alone because it’s veiled by vast clouds of dust. To study it, astronomers must use instruments that are sensitive to wavelengths that are invisible to the human eye.

We can see where the galactic center is, though. It’s just above the “spout” of teapot-shaped Sagittarius, which is low in the south-southwest as night falls. That’s right about where the Moon stands this evening — pointing the way to the distant hub of the Milky Way galaxy.

Script by Damond Benningfield, Copyright 2014


For more skywatching tips, astronomy news, and much more, read StarDate magazine.
The one constant in the Universe: StarDate magazine

FaviconMoon, Mars, and Antares 29 Sep 2014, 1:00 am

There’s a sweet alignment in the southwest as night falls this evening: the Moon, the planet Mars, and the star Antares. Mars and Antares are among the brightest pinpoints of light in the night sky, and both shine with a distinctly orange color. They line up below the Moon.

Although Mars and Antares look almost identical, they couldn’t be more different. Mars is a planet — a ball of rock that’s about half as big as Earth. It shines only by reflecting sunlight.

Antares, on the other hand, is a star — a ball of hot, glowing gases. Not only that, but it’s a supergiant star that’s many hundreds of times wider than the Sun.

To put that in perspective, imagine placing Antares so that its surface was the same distance as Mars is right now — about 140 million miles, or roughly half-again the distance from Earth to the Sun. At that range, Antares would span half of the daytime sky. And it would shine thousands of times brighter than the Sun. It would be so bright, in fact, that you’d probably need to wear a helmet with dark, thick glass to keep you from going blind.

No matter how you looked at it, though, the view wouldn’t last long. The star’s tremendous heat would quickly vaporize Earth’s atmosphere and oceans, leaving nothing more than a hot, barren rock.

And even that wouldn’t last long. Sometime in the next million years or so, Antares will explode as a supernova — a blast that will pulverize any nearby planets.

Script by Damond Benningfield, Copyright 2014

 

For more skywatching tips, astronomy news, and much more, read StarDate magazine.
The one constant in the Universe: StarDate magazine

FaviconComet Target 28 Sep 2014, 3:36 am

Mission scientists have chosen a landing spot for Philae, a small probe that's scheduled to land on Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko on November 12. Marked by a cross on this image, it features a relatively smooth surface, which provides a safe landing spot. The probe will fire a harpoon into the comet to prevent it from drifting away, then will study the comet's surface and sub-surface. [ESA/Rosetta]

Landing site for the Rosetta comet probe

Text ©2014 The University of Texas at Austin McDonald Observatory

For more skywatching tips, astronomy news, and much more, read StarDate magazine.
The one constant in the Universe: StarDate magazine

FaviconMoon and Planets 28 Sep 2014, 1:00 am

The Moon cruises between two planets early this evening. Saturn looks like a bright star to its lower right, with slightly brighter Mars to its left. The star Antares is below Mars, and shines almost the same color — bright orange.

Saturn has more than 60 moons of its own. Mars has only two, but their discovery presents an interesting history.

Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's travels, and the Mars moons Phobos (top left) and DeimosJonathan Swift, Gulliver's travels, and the Mars moons Phobos (top left) and DeimosJonathan Swift wrote about them in his 1726 novel, Gulliver's Travels. Although his descriptions of the moons were accurate, there was a problem: The moons had not yet been discovered. American astronomer Asaph Hall found them in 1877.

Swift based his descriptions of the moons on the astronomical knowledge of the day. Earth had one moon, and Jupiter was known to have four. Since Mars was between them, many assumed that it would have two moons. But since no one had yet discovered them, Swift deduced that they were small and close to Mars, where they were hidden in the planet’s glare.

Swift was right. Hall found the moons by blocking out Mars itself and scanning the space near the planet. He named his discoveries Phobos and Deimos — fear and panic — after two attendants to the god Mars.

Both moons may be asteroids that Mars captured early in its history. Many impact craters mark their surfaces. One of the biggest craters on Deimos is named for a man who wrote about the moons long before their discovery: Jonathan Swift.

Script by Damond Benningfield, Copyright 2014


For more skywatching tips, astronomy news, and much more, read StarDate magazine.
The one constant in the Universe: StarDate magazine

FaviconMoon and Saturn 27 Sep 2014, 1:00 am

Saturn is encircled by beautiful rings and more than 60 known moons. And there may be a link between the two — an idea supported by what appears to be a small moon taking shape inside the rings.

The possible moon is less than a mile across — too small to see directly. Last year, though, images from the Cassini spacecraft revealed a bright arc at the outer edge of Saturn’s A ring, the outermost of the planet’s main rings. The arc was hundreds of miles long, and may have formed when something hit the small moon and kicked off debris from its surface.

Planetary scientists think this part of the A ring is ripe for forming new moons. That’s because a larger moon, Janus, orbits beyond the A ring’s outer edge. The gravitational pull of Janus causes ring particles to crowd together. Some of these particles may merge, forming an ever-growing ball. Eventually, the ball may get big enough to form a moon.

Scientists don’t know when the new moon formed. It could have been during the past decade, or it could have been millions of years ago. Scientists hope to use Cassini to verify the discovery. It’s scheduled to pass close to the rings in 2016, possibly allowing it to see the moon directly — confirming what may be Saturn’s newest moon.

And Saturn is quite close to our own Moon this evening. The giant planet looks like a bright golden star close to the upper left of the crescent Moon as night falls. They set about an hour later.

Script by Ken Croswell, Copyright 2014


For more skywatching tips, astronomy news, and much more, read StarDate magazine.
The one constant in the Universe: StarDate magazine

ESOcast HD

ESOcast is a video podcast series dedicated to bringing you the latest news and research from ESO, the European Southern Observatory. Here we explore the Universe's ultimate frontier with our host Doctor J, a.k.a. Dr. Joe Liske.

FaviconESOcast 67: ESO People at Work and Play 11 Sep 2014, 6:00 am

This new ESOcast features six specialists in different areas who work at ESO in Germany and in Chile. Get to know the work they do at ESO, but also learn about interesting hobbies they pursue in their free time and how these hobbies may be connected to their work.

FaviconESOcast 66: A Groundbreaking Event for the E-ELT 2 Jul 2014, 9:00 am

On 19 June 2014, a major milestone on the road to the construction of the European Extremely Large Telescope was reached. Part of the 3000-metre peak of Cerro Armazones was blasted away as a step towards levelling the summit. This paves the way for the largest optical/infrared telescope in the world.

FaviconESOcast 65: The Chilean Sky in Ultra High Definition 30 May 2014, 12:00 pm

In the Spring of 2014, a team of ESO Photo ambassadors embarked on a pioneering expedition to ESO's three observatories in Chile. Their mission was to capture a wide range of images and time-lapses of the magnificent Chilean night sky and landscape in crisp Ultra High Definition. Join our heroes in their adventures in the arid Atacama Desert as they bring our Universe closer than ever before.

FaviconESOcast 64: First Ring System Around Asteroid 26 Mar 2014, 2:00 pm

This ESOcast shows how observations at many sites in South America, including ESO's La Silla Observatory, have made the surprise discovery that the remote asteroid Chariklo is surrounded by two dense and narrow rings.

FaviconESOcast 63: Flexible Giants — The Evolution of Telescope Mirrors 19 Feb 2014, 5:00 am

The clear night sky offers one of the most beautiful views in nature. The eye adapts to the dark and the pupil widens to collect more light and thus allow fainter stars to become visible. But the light-collecting area of the human eye is tiny. To peer much deeper into the night sky astronomers need telescopes with enormous primary mirrors to do a much better job.

HD - NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

High-definition (HD) videos from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory feature the latest news on space and science findings from JPL and NASA. Topics include discoveries made by spacecraft studying planets in our solar system, including Mars, Saturn and our home planet, Earth. Missions also study stars and galaxies in our universe.

FaviconCuriosity Rover Report: A Taste of Mount Sharp 25 Sep 2014, 3:00 am



NASA's Curiosity Mars rover has collected its first sample from the base of Mount Sharp.



FaviconWe made it! Curiosity reaches Mount Sharp 11 Sep 2014, 3:00 am



After 2 years and nearly 9 kilometers of driving, NASA's Mars Curiosity has arrived at the base of Mount Sharp.



FaviconA New Measure of Ocean Winds 2 Sep 2014, 3:00 am



A new tool for tracking hurricanes and tropical storms, ISS-RapidScat is the first instrument specifically created to watch Earth from the International Space Station.



FaviconWhat's Up - September 2014 29 Aug 2014, 3:00 am



Red star(Antares) meets red planet(Mars) and view the zodiacal light that points towards Jupiter.



FaviconThe Rosetta Mission Asks: What Can We Learn From Comets? 27 Aug 2014, 3:00 am



The Rosetta mission will give us an unprecedented look inside a comet, watching the icy traveler become active as it nears the sun.