Image of Mars, Venus, and Uranus This Week

— Alan Dyer (@amazingskyguy) March 4, 2015

Here’s a fine image by astrophotographer Alan Dyer of the rendezvous of Mars, Venus, and Uranus in the western sky after sunset. Tonight, Uranus passes just half a degree southeast of Venus. Grab a pair of binoculars and have a look for yourself…

The Sky This Month – March 2015

Spring “star stuff”

If nothing else this month, spring arrives for us beleaguered stargazers in eastern North America who have endured another absurdly cold winter. This month’s Full Moon is called the “Worm Moon” because the ground thaws and earthworms begin to do their business at this time of year. Though as March begins, in this part of the world, the worms are still under four feet of snow. But planets abound this month, with brilliant Jupiter still resplendent, Saturn rising in the pre-dawn sky, and Mars and Venus still visible in the western sky after sunset. The planet Uranus also makes an appearance early in the month less than a degree from Venus, so if you’ve never seen this distant ice giant, this is your chance. Here’s what to see in the night sky this month…

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‘Leave Home’ – A Timelapse of New Zealand

L E A V E H O M E – A NEW ZEALAND TIMELAPSE PROJECT from Manoj Kesavan on Vimeo.

Thanks to photographer Manoj Kesavan for sharing this timelapse of beautiful New Zealand. He worked on this project from mid-2013 until late 2014, and the results are mesmerizing. Called ‘Leave Home’, the timelapse was shot from many locations in Palmerston North, New Zealand as well as Taupo and Auckland. Early in the timelapse you see daytime views of the New Zealand landscape but halfway through the night views of the southern skies commence.

All-Sky View of the Southern Summer Skies

An awesome all-sky view of the southern summer stars from from their location at Siding Spring in Australia. You can see the southern Milky Way from the two bright stars of Centaurus, at left, moving right to the Southern Cross and the Coalsack, into the thick star fields of Carina and Vela. Sirius and Orion are at right. The Magellanic Clouds at lower left. And at top you see the full constellation Leo and brilliant Jupiter just a few days past opposition. Just to the lower right of Jupiter, you can see the faint fuzzy patch of the Beehive Cluster. At extreme right are the bright stars Castor and Pollux in the constellation Gemini. A great image for armchair stargazers.