On Sunday evening, a rocket lit up Florida’s nighttime sky as it ferried a spacecraft toward a first-of-its-kind adventure to the sun.

A new study of Greenland's shrinking ice sheet reveals that many of the island's glaciers are not only retreating but are also undergoing other physical changes. An independent review indicates NASA is ready to undertake its Mars Sample Return campaign to bring pristine samples from Mars to Earth. You may have marveled at how brightly a full Moon can light up a nighttime landscape, but have you noticed how Earth can illuminate the night side of the Moon? Hanukkah will begin toward the end of Kislev.

Meanwhile, SolO’s polar observations could add a crucial, missing piece to the puzzle of the sun’s magnetic cycle.

For the Washington, D.C. area the Moon will appear about 18 degrees above the south-southwestern horizon as evening twilight ends at 5:53 p.m. EST. It’s not as bright as Jupiter yet, but it soon will be, for about a month surrounding mid-October 2020.

“It’ll give us that contextual info, and then Parker will be there, measuring the actual plasma as [the SolO] orbiter images it.”.

You may have noticed the sun is very hip right now.

And according to Daniel Swain, a UCLA climate scientist, smoke and ash are now traveling up to 50,000 feet—“20,000 above cruising altitude of jet airliners,” he wrote in a recent tweet. Why is Mars bright in some years, but faint in others? It was even brighter than the second-brightest planet, Jupiter. “Having this sort of coordinated push makes huge, huge changes in the amount of science you can do.”.

It's located a bit more than 400 light-years away. The red planet is now bright and fiery red and will be for weeks to come. This is Mars’ opposition, when it appears opposite the sun in our sky.

New results from NASA's Juno mission suggest that either "sprites" or "elves" could be dancing in the upper atmosphere of Jupiter.

With enough warning, vulnerable satellites and power grids could be proactively taken offline, and any humans who happened to be either in orbit or in deep space could take cover.

Sometime around Monday, Nov. 23, 2020 (2020-Nov-23 12:53 UTC with 1 day, 18 hours, 20 minutes uncertainty), Near-Earth Object (2017 WJ16), between 120 to 269 feet (37 and 82 meters) across, will pass the Earth at between 4.1 and 6.1 lunar distances (nominally 4.9) traveling at 10,630 miles per hour (4.75 kilometers per second). Read more about this image. Just after midnight on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, at 12:07 a.m. EST, will be the new Moon, when the Moon passes between the Earth and the Sun and will not be visible from the Earth.

The Moon will set first in the west-southwest at 8:11 p.m. By Thursday evening, Nov. 19, 2020, the waxing crescent Moon will have shifted to the left of Jupiter and Saturn, appearing 24 degrees above the south-southwestern horizon as evening twilight ends (at 5:52 p.m. EST for the Washington, D.C. area). Over its seven-year journey, it will swing closer and closer to the sun during each orbit, eventually coming within four million miles of our star’s blazing surface. The 5-day Hindu festival of lights, Diwali or Dipavali, is celebrated around the night of this new Moon, considered the darkest night of the Hindu lunisolar calendar.

This week, a special issue of The Astrophysical Journal unveiled four dozen additional studies about the mission. In movie form, those images reveal the sun’s skin to be a slowly bubbling, patchworked surface, with plasma cells the size of Texas. Retired NASA manager Gordon Johnston explains the Moon, asteroids, and much more. Now called the Carrington Event, these types of space weather occurrences are exactly what scientists are hoping to predict as far ahead of time as possible.

This site is maintained by the Planetary Science Communications team at, Download the video & transcript in English & Spanish, NASA's Curiosity Takes Selfie With 'Mary Anning' on the Red Planet, Hubble Sees Unexplained Brightness from Colossal Explosion, Review Indicates NASA Prepared for Mars Sample Return Campaign, Europa Glows: Radiation Does a Bright Number on Jupiter's Moon, Hubble Launches Large Ultraviolet-Light Survey of Nearby Stars, NASA Missions Help Pinpoint the Source of a Unique X-ray, Radio Burst, NASA Contacts Voyager 2 Using Upgraded Deep Space Network Dish, First Scientific Instrument Installed on NASA's Lucy Spacecraft, New Evidence Our Neighborhood in Space Is Stuffed With Hydrogen, Hubble Captures Luminous Beauty in a Galaxy Collision, Impact Craters Reveal Details of Titan's Dynamic Surface Weathering, OSIRIS-REx Successfully Stows Sample of Asteroid Bennu, OSIRIS-REx is Working to Store Sample of Asteroid Bennu, Juno Data Indicates 'Sprites' or 'Elves' Frolic in Jupiter's Atmosphere, NASA Scientists Discover ‘Weird' Molecule in Titan's Atmosphere, Greenland's Retreating Glaciers Could Impact Local Ecology, October 2020 - Part II: The Next Full Moon is a Halloween Hunter's Moon and "Micro" Moon, NASA's Perseverance Rover Is Midway to Mars, Jezero Crater Was a Lake in Mars' Ancient Past, NASA's SOFIA Discovers Water on Sunlit Surface of Moon, NASA's OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft Goes for Early Stow of Asteroid Sample, Sensors on Mars 2020 Spacecraft Answer Long Distance Call from Earth. Jupiter always looks bright, because it’s so big.

SolO is launching during an especially hot moment in solar monitoring; it’s just one of several new projects set on staring at the sun, offering opportunities for even more robust scientific exploration of our home star. See more photos of last weekend’s moon and Mars. What’s more, 2 other planets – Jupiter and Saturn – are up at the same time as Mars. “Hopefully, we’re filling in that gap with Solar Orbiter.”. On Saturday morning, Nov. 14, 2020, at 6:44 a.m. EST, the Moon will be at perigee, its closest to the Earth for this orbit.

NASA Official: Aclima, which measures pollution, had an explanation.

Those of us living in urban and suburban environments surrounded by light sources will probably not have much luck seeing these meteors.

See more photos of last weekend’s moon and Mars. Thursday morning, Nov. 26, 2020, will be the last morning that the planet Mercury will be above the east-southeastern horizon when morning twilight begins for this apparition.

If you start watching Mars in September 2020, you can see it at its best and enjoy it for the remaining months of this year. The next full Moon will be on the morning of Halloween, Saturday, Oct. 31, 2020, The Moon will appear full for about three days, making this a full Moon weekend.

Preston Dyches, Christopher Harris, and Lisa Poje are the science communicators and space enthusiasts who produce this monthly video series for NASA at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

“Understanding these fundamental processes, the physical processes taking place in the inner region of the solar atmosphere, is really going to help us,” says Holly Gilbert, NASA project scientist for SolO.

The tenth month of the Chinese calendar starts on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020 (at midnight in China's time zone, which is 13 hours ahead of EST). Bottom line: Mars alternates years in appearing bright and faint in our night sky. “That’s really been our blind spot.”. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says. It will also help answer what controls the sun’s 11-year magnetic cycle, which varies in intensity and creates unanticipated fluctuations in solar activity. Now is the time to start watching Mars. Together, the spacecraft pair will assemble high-resolution observations of what could be the most dynamic, extreme environment in the solar system. Earthshine is easiest to observe in the few days before and after the new Moon, when the part of the Moon that's directly lit by the Sun appears as a slim crescent. Opposition for Mars – when Earth passes between Mars and the sun – happens every two years and 50 days.

The unusual orange and red … That’s partly because of its 13-foot mirror, which is far larger than even the Hubble Space Telescope’s. Longer Distance to Travel

It was barely noticeable in our sky.

Earth will pass between Mars and the sun next on October 13, 2020. Learn about the star at the center of our solar system, and how it is critical to all life as we know it. Retired NASA Program Manager Gordon Johnston provides the daily guide.

If you missed Mars last weekend near the moon, don’t worry. Director, NASA Planetary Science Division: Artist’s concept of Earth (3rd planet from the sun) passing between the sun and Mars (4th planet from the sun). Used with permission. That was really something. The best times to observe Earthshine in November are after sunset on the 17th through the 20th. This festival will run from Nov. 12 through Nov. 16, 2020. Not so for little Mars. And now Mars is bright again, brighter than all the stars. Over the next five years, Venus’s gravity will propel the probe into an inclined orbit that will bring the solar poles into view, with the first glimpse of the poles expected in 2025. “Each orbit will get higher and higher, so in a way we’re kind of unwrapping the polar regions, bit by bit,” Gilbert says. You may have noticed the sun is very hip right now. Photos of bright Mars in 2018, from the EarthSky community. Mark your calendars: NASA's latest rover has only about 100 days to go before it touches down on the Red Planet, becoming history's next Mars car. You can’t miss all 3 planets, no matter where you are on Earth, but their orientation with respect to your horizon will shift, depending on where you are. It’s rising in the east now not long after the sun goes down.

“(It was) definitely in line with everything going on in 2020,” said Sebastian Matthews, who saw the sun after just waking up Tuesday morning.

It’s very bright, and it’s very red in color. And that has applications for other stars in other stellar systems.”. On Monday morning, Nov. 16, and again on Tuesday morning, Nov. 17, 2020, the bright star Spica will appear about 4 degrees to the lower right of the bright planet Venus.

National Weather service meteorologist explains why our sun looks particularly red right now.

Right now, humans are not so good at predicting when or how strongly those eruptions will affect the planet. As of June 2020, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory – SDO – has now been watching the Sun non-stop for over a full decade. End of world: Why is the sky glowing a sickly YELLOW over Britain RIGHT NOW? A handful of the brightest stars in the cluster are visible with the unaided eye, and with binoculars or a telescope, you can see hundreds.

“As we get more and more dependent on satellites for communication, and go to the moon and Mars and become a spacefaring people, we really have to understand the dangers to crew as well as our own electronic assets in space.”.

Right now that field indicates the sun will be as active in 2025 as it was in 2014.

From the Northern Hemisphere, Jupiter and Saturn are in the south as Mars is ascending in the east. Maybe you can see that – in years when we pass between Mars and the sun, when Mars is also closest to the sun – Earth and Mars are closest. Perhaps the upcoming solar minimum in 2020 will help answer that question." © 1996-2015 National Geographic Society, © 2015-

It's a great time to look for the Pleiades, plus Jupiter and Saturn. That may be about to change.


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