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Saturn's Hexagon Viewed from the Ground

Leigh Fletcher • February 01, 2013

For the first time, amateur astronomers are capturing spectacular images of Saturn's bizarre north polar hexagon.

Astrophotos making the web - the good, the bad and the ugly ...

Daniel Fischer • October 10, 2012

Space blogger Daniel Fischer writes about the problem of composited astrophotos being distributed through social media channels by people unaware that they are artworks, not documentary photographs.

Adventures in urban astrophotography

Jason Davis • February 20, 2012

Just because you live in an urban area with skyglow doesn't mean you can't have fun with astrophotography. How to capture the planets, constellations and the ISS.

Checking up on Jupiter and Saturn

Emily Lakdawalla • February 10, 2012

It's amateur astronomers, not professionals, who are shouldering the burden of constant monitoring of the weather on Jupiter and Saturn. What's going on these days in the outer solar system?

Lovely Lovejoy pictures

Emily Lakdawalla • December 27, 2011

Just a few of the amazing photos of Comet Lovejoy that have been taken from the southern hemisphere over the last few days. Comet Lovejoy is the first Kreutz sungrazer to have been discovered from the ground in 40 years, and after its surprising survival of its passage close to the Sun, it has been putting on a spectacular show in southern skies.

Comet Garradd in 3D (sort of)

Emily Lakdawalla • August 12, 2011

Amateur astronomer Patrick Wiggins sent me this neat little animation of comet Garradd moving against background stars through an hour's worth of observing. I'm not any kind of astronomer but if I were I think I would get a kick out of looking at things that appear to move within one night of watching -- asteroids, comets, Jupiter's spots. I'm impatient that way.

Jupiter's southern belt is coming back

Emily Lakdawalla • August 01, 2011

In a story that I've been following for quite a while, Jupiter's southern equatorial belt, having faded to white in 2009, is now well on its way back to its former red glory.

Lovely giant full Moon photo

Emily Lakdawalla • April 01, 2011

Here's a photo worthy of hanging on the wall: a gorgeous, 4000-pixel-square portrait of the full Moon captured by Rolf Hempel from Germany on the night of the "Supermoon."

Checking in on Jupiter: the belt is coming back

Emily Lakdawalla • March 25, 2011

Since it's been several months since I last took a look at Jupiter, I thought it was time to see what's up with the South Equatorial Belt.

Some recent pictures of Saturn's northern storm

Emily Lakdawalla • February 07, 2011

There is a huge storm that's spreading across so much of Saturn that it's been readily visible even from Earth-based telescopes. Over the past couple of days a couple of new images of Saturn have appeared that show just how enormous the storm is today.

Jupiter's outbreak is spreading

Emily Lakdawalla • November 22, 2010

Jupiter, always a pretty sight in the sky, is now worth visiting every day; the "outbreak" that heralds the return of Jupiter's formerly red, now fadedsouth equatorial belt is expanding and multiplying.

The Disturbance is Starting

Emily Lakdawalla • November 11, 2010

Jupiter's faded belt may be coming back.

Three days until Deep Impact's encounter with Hartley 2

Emily Lakdawalla • November 01, 2010

The week is finally here: Deep Impact flies past Hartley 2, the smallest comet yet to be visited by a spacecraft, on Thursday, November 4 at 13:50 UTC.

Early warning for close approaches of two house-sized asteroids

Emily Lakdawalla • September 08, 2010

Most of you have probably heard by now of two small asteroids, both in the neighborhood of 10 meters in diameter, recently discovered on trajectories that pass unusually close to Earth.

The August 20, 2010 Jupiter fireball -- and the March 5, 1979 one

Emily Lakdawalla • August 24, 2010

Following up on the story I first posted on August 22, the Jupiter impact fireball first noticed by Japanese amateur astronomer Masayuki Tachikawa has been independently confirmed by two other Japanese astronomers.

Yet another Jupiter impact!? August 20, seen from Japan

Emily Lakdawalla • August 22, 2010

This may be a very common event after all: another optical flash has been observed on Jupiter, again from an observer far east of the Greenwich meridian, though it was not Anthony Wesley (for once).

The June 3 Jupiter Impact: 22 hours later

Emily Lakdawalla • June 04, 2010

Time to take stock of what happened a day ago. The worldwide, round-the-clock nature of planetary science is both exhilarating and challenging!

Confirmation of the Jupiter impact from Christopher Go

Emily Lakdawalla • June 03, 2010

The impact flash on Jupiter observed earlier today by Anthony Wesley has been confirmed by Philippines-based amateur astronomer Christopher Go.

A NEW! Impact on Jupiter

Emily Lakdawalla • June 03, 2010

On the same day as a team of astronomers released new Hubble Space Telescope images of last year's Jupiter impact, the original discoverer of the 2009 impact scar, Anthony Wesley, reported on an amateur astronomy forum that he had observed a new impact on Jupiter.

Jupiter has lost a belt!

Emily Lakdawalla • May 10, 2010

Via Daniel Fischer's Tweet about a blog entry by Astro BobI learned of something which should be obvious to anyone who has trained even a rather small telescope on Jupiter over the past few weeks: one of its iconic stripes is just plain gone.

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