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Here are the Editor's Picks articles for the Astronomy Site! These are the top ten articles that your Astronomy Editor feels are most important for you to read. Enjoy!
1. Astronomical Valentines
Valentine's Day. Is it a romantic day or one invented by greeting card companies and sellers of luxury goods? It certainly isn't an astronomical holiday, but whatever your view of the day, you can enjoy this selection of cosmic valentines.
2. Galileo's Daughter - book review
Most people think of Galileo as the man who is a symbol of the heroic voice of truth against a powerful reactionary Church. However this mythic Galileo is not the one Dava Sobel's book, "Galileo's Daughter", reveals through his faith, his work and his daughter's love.
3. Jupiter's Galilean Moons
Four moons circling Jupiter. It was a sensation when Galileo discovered them in the early 17th century – and they're still sensational! One is bigger than a planet. Another seethes with volcanic activity and has mountains taller than Everest. And which one has ocean that could harbor life?
4. What Color Is a Nebula
Nebulae are distant clouds of gas and dust. We see pictures of them in glorious color, but is that what we would we see with our own eyes if we were closer? If not, what color is a nebula?
5. Copernicus - His Life
The day job of Nicolaus Copernicus, the reluctant revolutionary, was canon of a cathedral. The last resting place of this man who turned astronomy on its head was unmarked. How did his student astronomy books help to identify his remains four and a half centuries later?
6. Scale of the Universe 2 - website
How big is the Universe? And how small? This website takes you from yoctometers - unbelievably small - to yottameters – just as unbelievably big. Navigate up or down from the human scale, with drawings and diagrams that make sense of the numbers. A great tour for everyone.
7. George & the Big Bang - book review
Will a secret organization and an evil genius succeed in destroying a big physics experiment and killing the scientists involved? Can George and Annie find and disarm the quantum bomb? How is Schrödinger's cat involved? Another great blend of fantasy and science from Lucy and Stephen Hawking.
8. Cassiopeia the Queen
High in the sky, circling the north celestial pole are the distinctive stars of Cassiopeia, the boastful queen who nearly destroyed her kingdom. The Milky Way runs through the constellation and it's full of star clusters, galaxies and evidence of the life cycles of stars.
9. Mizar and Alcor – Horse and Rider
The Big Dipper is part of the constellation Ursa Major. It's probably the best known item in the night sky after the Moon. More people could pick out its seven stars than could locate the Seven Sisters, the Pleiades. But are there only seven stars in the Big Dipper? What about the Horse and Rider?
10. Syon House
The Wizard Earl, the start of astronomy with a telescope, Sir Walter Raleigh, Virginia, the Gunpowder Plot, and the Smithsonian. What does all of this history have in common? Syon Park, a stately home on the River Thames.
Be sure to visit the Astronomy Archives for all the articles!
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