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

FaviconStrangely Familiar 23 Aug 2014, 3:10 am

A powerful camera that is helping astronomers probe the mystery of dark energy snapped this image of NGC 1398, a spiral galaxy that is about 65 million light-years from Earth. It closely resembles our home galaxy, the Milky Way. Both are barred spirals, with delicate spiral arms wrapping around a thick bar of stars in the middle. NGC 1398 is slightly larger than the Milky Way, with a diameter of roughly 135,000 light-years. The image was taken with the Dark Energy Camera, which is surveying distant galaxies to provide new details about the accelerating expansion of the universe. [Dark Energy Survey]

NGC 1398, a spiral galaxy in the constellation Fornax

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

FaviconPlanet Bonanza 23 Aug 2014, 1:00 am

The Summer Triangle is one of the skywatching treats of the season. Its stars are among the brightest in the night sky, so they’re visible even from light-polluted cities. And they bound a region that’s yielded more than a thousand confirmed exoplanets — planets orbiting stars other than the Sun.

That’s mainly because that region of the sky was the target for Kepler, a planet-hunting space telescope. In four years of searching, it discovered more than 5,000 possible planets there. About a thousand have been confirmed, with the rest awaiting follow-up observations from the ground.

Kepler’s list of discoveries includes the first Earth-size planet found in its star’s habitable zone — the distance from the star where temperatures are just right for liquid water.

The list also includes star systems with as many as six planets, planets that orbit two stars, and planets that are so close to their stars that radiation is vaporizing their atmospheres; we’ll talk about a system with two of these doomed planets tomorrow.

Kepler’s pointing system failed last year, so it can no longer maintain its gaze on the Summer Triangle. It can lock onto a patch of sky for a few weeks, though, so it’s hopscotching around the sky in search of more new worlds.

The Summer Triangle is high in the east at nightfall. Its brightest star, Vega, is high overhead, with Deneb to its lower left and Altair farther to the lower right — outlining a zone with lots of 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

FaviconMoon and Planets 22 Aug 2014, 1:00 am

If you happen to be up and about at the crack of dawn tomorrow, then you might want to take a glance at the eastern horizon. The three brightest objects in the night sky are congregating within a few degrees of each other — the Moon and the planets Venus and Jupiter. They’re quite low in the sky at first light, and fade from view as the growing twilight banishes the darkness.

Jupiter, the solar system’s largest planet, is close to the upper left of the crescent Moon. Brighter Venus, our nearest planetary neighbor, is a little farther to the lower left. Both planets outshine all the other planets and stars in the night sky, so there’s never any trouble spotting them.

Venus is dropping toward the Sun right now, and will disappear in the Sun’s glare in a few weeks. Jupiter, on the other hand, is pulling away from the Sun, climbing a little higher into the sky each morning.

Over the months, it will begin rising before midnight, then in early evening, and then it’ll already be in the sky by the time night falls. Jupiter will finally vanish from view around the first of next August as it begins to pass behind the Sun. The giant planet will return to view in September, as it begins another year-long sojourn across the night sky.

For now, enjoy Jupiter and its companions at first light. Venus and Jupiter will remain fairly close together for a few days more as they inexorably head in opposite directions across the sky.

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

FaviconMars and Saturn 21 Aug 2014, 1:00 am

Summer still has a month to go here in the northern hemisphere of Earth, but the northern hemisphere of Mars is already seeing the cooler days of autumn. The season arrived earlier this week. It’ll last about five months — shorter than any other Martian season.

Like Earth, Mars has seasons mainly because it’s tilted on its axis. It’s summer in the north when the north pole tilts most directly toward the Sun, and winter when the south pole aims at the Sun.

But the Martian seasons are exaggerated by the planet’s orbit. While Earth’s distance from the Sun varies by only about three million miles, the distance from Mars to the Sun varies by 26 million miles.

Mars is closest to the Sun when it’s winter in the northern hemisphere, and farthest when it’s summer, so that half of the planet sees mild winters and summers. The south, on the other hand, has short but warm summers and long, cold winters. And the longest season of all on the Red Planet is northern spring, which stretches across almost 200 Earth days — a long time to thaw out after the Martian winter.

And Mars is staging a nice encounter with Saturn in the evening sky. Mars looks like a bright yellow-orange star. Slightly brighter Saturn is close to the upper left of Mars tonight. Mars will swing beneath Saturn over the next few nights, then pull away from it through the rest of the summer and into autumn.

We’ll talk about an even brighter encounter in the morning sky tomorrow.

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

FaviconGreat Red Spot III 20 Aug 2014, 1:00 am

Jupiter’s Great Red Spot appears to be on a diet. It’s slimmed down by thousands of miles, and the loss has accelerated in recent years. Planetary scientists say there’s no way to know what will happen next.

Back in the 19th century, the oval-shaped storm was roughly 25,000 miles wide — about three times the diameter of Earth. By the time the Voyager spacecraft flew past Jupiter in the 1970s, the spot had shrunk to twice the diameter of Earth. And this year, Hubble Space Telescope measured its length at not much more than one Earth diameter.

The Great Red Spot is flanked by strong jet streams. Interactions between the jet streams and the spot spin off eddies. They travel all the way around the planet, and then merge with the red spot, adding energy to the system. But Rita Beebe of New Mexico State, an expert on Jupiter’s atmosphere, says that fewer of these big eddies have merged with the red spot in recent years.

BEEBE: We really think the way it has lived all these years is the same life cycle as in the ocean: big fishes eat little fishes. Big eddies eat little eddies on Jupiter, and the little eddies are not coming in so he can grab them right now. So we think the red spot has gone on a diet.

The Great Red Spot may eventually begin growing again. Or it may stabilize at a smaller size. Or it could even disappear. About the only thing we can say for sure is that astronomers will keep an eye on it to see what happens.

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

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 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.

FaviconESOcast 62: Three planets found in star cluster 15 Jan 2014, 6:00 am

In this ESOcast we look at how astronomers have used ESO's HARPS planet hunter in Chile, along with other telescopes around the world, to discover three planets orbiting stars in the cluster Messier 67. Although more than one thousand planets outside the Solar System are now confirmed, only a handful have been found in star clusters. Remarkably one of these new exoplanets is orbiting a star that is a rare solar twin — a star that is almost identical to the Sun in all respects.

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.

FaviconThe Rosetta Mission Asks: What is a Comet? 6 Aug 2014, 3:00 am



Scientists attempt to answer questions and more as the Rosetta Mission's Orbiter arrives and escorts comet 67/p Churyumov Gerasimenko into our inner solar system.



FaviconCuriosity Rover Report (Aug. 5, 2014): A Softer Trek to Mount Sharp 5 Aug 2014, 3:00 am



On the second anniversary of NASA Curiosity on Mars, the rover navigates a sandy valley on its way to Mount Sharp.



FaviconWhat's Up - August 2014 1 Aug 2014, 3:00 am



Planets pair up at dawn and dusk. Perseids peak Aug 12/13, visible almost all month



FaviconFlash from Curiosity Rover's Laser Hitting a Martian Rock 16 Jul 2014, 3:00 am



The sparks that appear on the baseball-sized rock result from the laser of the ChemCam instrument on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover hitting the rock.



FaviconNEOWISE Spies Comet Pan-STARRS Against Galaxy Backdrop 3 Jul 2014, 3:00 am



NASA's NEOWISE mission captured a series of infrared images of comet C/2012 K1 -- also referred to as comet Pan-STARRS -- as it swept across our skies in May 2014.