Author Archives: Gary Boyle

Perseid’s are underway

The annual Perseid meteor shower is currently underway and will peak on the night of August 12 into the morning of the 13th. The Perseids is the result of earth ploughing through the debris field of Comet Swift-Tuttle when this 26-kilometre wide mountain of rock and ice last rounded the sun in 1992. At its peak, the shower can produce up ...

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The Annual Perseid Meteor Shower

  You are taking a late-night stroll or sitting on your deck staring at the starry sky and whoosh, a quick streak of light catches your attention. You have just witnessed the fiery re-entry of space debris called a meteor. In a few cases, they can be nuts, bolts and wires from damaged satellites orbiting high above the earth. However, ...

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Big Bright Jupiter

On any clear night, look to the southern portion of the sky after sunset and you will come across a bright object. This is not a star but the planet Jupiter. Of the eight major planets in our solar system, Jupiter is literally the “king”. This fifth planet from the sun is so large; eleven earths can line up across ...

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Telescopes and Binoculars

Telescopes have come a long way since its invention in 1608. The simple refracting telescope consisted of two small lenses located at each end of a long tube. This `spyglass` was a great tool to magnify approaching enemy ships from a distance.   Galileo Galilei heard of this new instrument and in 1609 constructed his own without seeing the original. ...

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Our Moon

  Stargazing is a wonderful and peaceful past time that anyone can enjoy. From planets to star clusters, galaxies to nebulae, the night sky is a treasure chest of celestial delights. Although astronomy and star gazing are traditionally done in the dark countryside, our glorious moon can be enjoyed from the city as well. The moon was created about 50,000 ...

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The Sun – Our Life Giving Star

My passion for the night sky began at the tender age of 8 with an elementary school library book entitled “Stars”. I learned from that fateful day that the Sun is a typical star in the night sky and one of 200 billion stars of our Milky Way Galaxy. But not all stars are the same. They come in an ...

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Star Gazing – The Gemini Twins

Castor and Pollux are bright stars belonging to the constellation Gemini and are part of the dozen bright stars that light up the winter sky. They represent the heads of the twin which were actually half brothers as stated in mythology. Located 34 light years away, Pollux is a magnitude 1.14 orange coloured star, It has a diameter of 9 ...

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Plan for Magical Total Lunar Eclipse – January 20th

  A total lunar eclipse is a magical event to witness and our next chance comes on the night of January 20/21 with all of North America having a ring side seat for the entire show. An eclipse is a result of the perfect lineup of the sun, earth and moon. This does not occur every month as our moon ...

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Star Gazing – Bright Comet and Meteor Shower

    For thousands of years, the night sky has been a place of entertainment and guidance. It was also the foundation of myths and superstitions. Bright comets were deemed to be messengers of impending doom such as drought, disease, famine, war, etc. Located in the outer reaches of our solar system, comets are mountains of rock and ice that ...

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Star Gazing – Annual Perseids Show peaks this weekend

The weekend of August 11-13 will be a great time for heading out of town to the great outdoors, especially at night. This is the weekend of the annual Perseid meteor shower and during the peak nights of Aug 11/12 and Aug 12/13; more than 100 meteors (shooting stars) can be seen per hour. The shower is the result of ...

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Close Approach of Mars

Jun 22, 2018 @ 11:04   Hands down the biggest celestial event of the year will take place on the night of July 27 – the closest approach of Mars since 2003. The red planet is now seen rising in the south-east at midnight local time and will continue rising a bit earlier each night until the big night when ...

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The annual Geminid meteor shower

Dec 5, 2017 @ 08:08 Another great celestial event is poised to light up the night sky. The annual Geminid meteor shower will peak on the night of December 13 into the morning of the 14th. As Earth crosses the debris field of asteroid 3200 Phaethon we will enjoy a predicted rate of 120 meteors seen per hour or one ...

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Star Gazing – Not a UFO, Just The Planets

On the morning of November 13, look to the eastern horizon around 6 a.m. local time or an hour before sunrise and you will witness what seems to be an odd sighting in the sky. Like a pair of “spooky eyes” or even a “UFO”, they are simply the two brightest planets of our solar system passing each other so ...

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Star Gazing – Northern Lights

May 28, 2017 @ 13:36 On the night of May 27, sky watchers across Canada and as far south as Pennsylvania were treated to a beautiful light show – the aurora borealis.   Primarily seen as a greenish glow low in the north, the Aurora at times creates long spikes or columns of green, red, blue and violet that brighten ...

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