Books & Music
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
News & Politics
Religion & Spirituality
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies
Here are the top ten articles for the Astronomy Site! These rankings are live and get reset at the beginning of each month, so check back often to see what your fellow visitors are most interested in!
1. Sputnik – The Space Race Begins
On October 4, 1957 a small object had people around the globe looking excitedly – or anxiously – up at the sky. It's so common now that people today could scarcely imagine the effect that the first artificial satellite had. Sputnik began the Cold War's space race.
2. Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2016
The Sun as you've never before seen it. A twilight aurora, lunar landscapes, and galaxies far far away. There's all that and more in the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2016 exhibition at the Royal Observatory Greenwich.
3. Europa Facts for Kids
Astronomers are very interested in Jupiter's moon Europa. They think that it has a large ocean covering the moon under its icy crust, and that it would be a good place to look for life.
4. Autumnal Equinox
Autumn begins on the equinox, the day the Sun crosses the equator. Equinoxes were celebrated by the earliest known civilizations, and are still in many places. One of the biggest celebrations is the Chinese Moon Festival. A traditional Chinese palace or garden has a moon-watching pavilion.
5. M1 Crab Nebula
Messier's catalog of nebulous objects begins with M1 the Crab Nebula. In 18th-century telescopes it was just a fuzzy patch, yet imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope, it's fascinating and intricate. But what is it? Why is it called the Crab Nebula? And what amazing secret does it hide?
6. Orionids – Crumbs of Halley's Comet
The most famous comet is Halley's Comet. English astronomer Edmond Halley didn't discover it, but did discover that it came visiting every 75-76 years. If you can't wait until 2062 for the next visit, you can see the Orionid meteor shower which is created by debris from Halley's Comet.
7. Cosmonauts - Birth of the Space Age
The starter's pistol for the space race was fired on October 4, 1957. It was in the form of a small highly-polished sphere that orbited the Earth every 98 minutes. This was the Soviet Union's Sputnik, Earth's first artificial satellite. It shook up the United States, and there was more to come.
8. ABC of Astronomy – B Is for Bok Globule
B is for Bok globule, a kind of dark nebula studied by Bart Bok. B is for Bayer who invented a handy system of star designations beginning with a Greek letter. And B is for Baily's beads. You won't find them in a jewelry shop, but you might see them in a solar eclipse, as Francis Baily did.
Easter Island and a distant dwarf planet – what do they have in common? The answer is Makemake – the creator god in the Rapa Nui mythology of Easter Island. How did his name come to be given to a small frozen body seven billion kilometers (four billion miles) from the Sun?
10. Mars Myths – Would You Believe Them
Which famous astronomer kept seeing canals on Mars, even when they couldn't be seen with the world's biggest telescope? What was the tragic outcome of a fictional invasion from Mars? Is NASA hiding evidence of an ancient Martian civilization? Does Mars ever look as big as a full Moon?
Be sure to visit the Astronomy Archives for all the articles!
Website copyright © 2016 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.