A really quick round up of the week in space including a black hole swallowing a star, the Mars dust storm and Hayabusa’s journey to Ryugu.
Hayabusa2 is about to have a close up and personal experience with the asteroid Ryugu. In this mission the spacecraft will collect a bit of the asteroid and return to Earth.
Now that your telescope is all ready, take it outside and start viewing the night sky.
Using a telescope for the first time can be quite daunting. So it’s worth taking the time to get familiar with the telescope and the mount and all of the accessories, so that you can make the most of your time outside and don’t hurt yourself or your new expensive equipment.
New Horizons will make its next encounter on 1 January next year as it approaches the Kuiper Belt Object Ultima Thule, formerly known as 2014 MU69.
The Pleiades are a fascinating star cluster that is easily spotted not far from the Hyades cluster in Taurus and is visible in the Southern Hemisphere summer, Northern Hemisphere winter.
The night sky this week is a great opportunity to get your binoculars and telescopes out to see the fantastic nebulae that sit between Scorpius and Sagittarius.
A summary of the week in space in a minute. This week it was the return of Expedition 55 from the International Space Station, a meteorite puts on a display over Botswana and SOFIA arrives in New Zealand.
The night sky this week has a few treats including the asteroid Vesta, Mars and the Moon getting close, Jupiter’s moons crossing the planet and the fantastic nebulae in Sagittarius showing off.
Vesta is at opposition in June and will be easy to spot with binoculars.
The night sky this week will be dominated by the Moon, so it’s a good time to get out and appreciate the planets that are getting into a more favourable position for viewing.
Ian Cooper is a giant in New Zealand astrophotography. He has been capturing the night sky since the 1970s and in this article he takes us through some of the highlights and give us some tips.
Stellar evolution is a fascinating topic and what happens in the last phases of a star’s life is mind boggling. Some stars are so big that their collapsing core turns straight into a black hole that suppresses the supernova.
ESA is planing on launching the CHEOPS satellite later this year. It will be used to collect more accurate information on exoplanets from systems known to already have exoplanets.
Space exploration drives a lot of technological development that has spinoffs for Earth-bound applications.
The week in space includes the launch of the Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket, the planned helicopter for Mars and the BepiColombo mission is getting closer to launch.
A short video of some highlights of the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere from 11 May 2018.
Supernovae are quite amazing but there are even bigger and weirder events in the universe that occur when neutron stars and black holes get a bit too close for comfort.
A short video highlighting some of the events in the last week in space, including this morning’s launch of Mars InSight.
Supernovae cause the biggest explosions in the universe, often out shining their host galaxies. There’s plenty of flavours of supernova and they aren’t all just big stars blowing up.
Our Sun has had a few outbursts that have knocked out power grids and telegraph networks as well as disrupted satellite communications. These are nothing compared to what stars similar to our Sun have been observed doing.