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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. Why the Sky Looks Blue
A sunny day with a beautiful blue sky may prompt a child to wonder why the sky is blue. It's a good question. After all, the Sun isn't blue, and even if the sky above us looks blue, the air around us doesn't. The answer has to do with sunlight, Earth's atmosphere, and our eyes.
2. Solar System Discoveries Quiz
Since prehistoric times people have known the Sun, the Moon and five planets. The rest of the Solar System had to await discovery by people with telescopes. How many of the discoverers can you identify?
3. Canis Major - the Greater Dog
In a sky full of gods, heroes and wronged women, there are also four dogs. We have Canis Minor and the two dogs of Canes Venatici, but Canis Major is definitely top dog. It's a prominent constellation that has represented a dog from early Greek times.
4. Life and Death of Massive Stars Facts for Kids
Stars are all born in the same way, but they live and die in different ways. A star's mass rules how hot it will be, how long it will shine, and how it will end.
5. Astronomy ABC - H for Herschel Space Observatory
The Herschel Space Observatory is the largest telescope ever sent into space. It's an infrared telescope named in honor of William Herschel who discovered infrared radiation, and his sister Caroline who worked with him. What's infrared? Who launched the telescope? What did we learn from it?
6. Enceladus 10 Amazing Facts
Saturn's moon Enceladus is a strange one. There are eruptions of cold volcanoes. This adds snow to a surface so bright it reflects 99% of the Sun's light, and supplies particles to maintain one of Saturn's rings. And does the moon harbor life in the salty ocean that lies under the ice?
7. Titan - Planet-sized Moon of Saturn
Titan was a mystery for three and a half centuries. It's a giant moon shrouded in impenetrable clouds, and has only recently begun to share its secrets. Why do scientists say it's like Earth? Is it time to book a vacation to visit the lakes and mountains of Titan?
8. Coma Berenices Berenice's Hair
A dazzling queen of ancient Egypt was the inspiration for the constellation Coma Berenices. It's small and dim, but contains the Galactic North Pole and multitudes of galaxies.
9. Doodles for Women Astronomers
Since 2013 four outstanding women astronomers have been honored by a Google Doodle. None of the Doodles have had a worldwide reach, but there is a link to each delightful drawing and I've given some biographical details. Read on to meet this stellar quartet.
10. 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.
Be sure to visit the Astronomy Archives for all the articles!
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