Sky Guide April 2014




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What to look out, and up, for in April.

We start with the constellation of Ursa Major in our beginner’s and young observer’s guide.

Next up is the moon and our round up of the craters and interesting lunar features you can explore with a small telescope.

Mars, Venus, Saturn & Jupiter feature in the planetary round up for Northern Hemisphere observers this month and we finish off with some suggestions around the constellation Boötes.

#21 – March 2014




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This month we talk science outreach in Wiltshire and have an audio report on the aurora from Iceland

In the news, we have a supernova for amateur observers in a ‘nearby’ galaxy and Europe’s Herschel Observatory finding water plumes on dwarf planet Ceres. China’s Chang’e-3 moon mission finds itself in trouble (in more ways than one!) and the European Space Agency gives the green light to the exoplanet and star characterising PLATO mission.

In the 5 Minute Concept, Paul poetically explains the history and science behind one of astronomy’s greatest ever discoveries, as he unwraps the concept of redshift.

We interview Carole Mundell, Professor of Extragalactic Astronomy at Liverpool John Moore’s University, about the most violent explosions in the universe and promoting equality in science & astronomy.

And in Q&A, we answer listeners’ questions on the likelihood of fatalities from the M82 supernova and why the sun doesn’t just float away.

Sky Guide March 2014

What to look out, and up, for in March.

We start with the constellation of Leo in our beginner’s and young observer’s guide, and end it with a few deep sky challenges for the more advanced amateurs to hunt down.

Next up is the moon and our round up of the craters and interesting lunar features you can explore with a small telescope.

While Jupiter, Mars and Saturn feature in the planetary round up for Northern Hemisphere observers this month.

#20 – February 2014




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This month, our captured Earthling Damien brings us a stargazing report from Pakistan.

News includes a new planet hunting instrument in Chile, a best-yet candidate for a naked-eye visible supernova, the progress of commercial space-flight and public access to space, China’s Chang’e-3 rover’s discoveries and ESA’s Rosetta and Gaia missions.

In his 5 Minute Concept, Paul explains our solar systems ring of icy debris – the Kuiper Belt – and the need for a good publicist!

We have lots of goodies to give away to one listener in our European Southern Observatory competition and Ralph interviews Dr Joe Liske, from ESO, about the world’s biggest telescopes and finding ET in our lifetime.

And in listeners’ Q&A we answer questions about ice on Mercury and the expansion of the universe.

Sky Guide February 2014




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What to look out, and up, for in February 2014.

We start with a new feature the beginner’s – or young observer’s – guide, and a tour of the constellation Orion.

Next up is our round up of the planets available this month to northern hemisphere observers, interesting lunar features and meteor showers.

And we finish off with the best stars and deep sky objects on offer in the constellations Monoceros and Cancer.

#19 – January 2014




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Happy New Year!

The sky guide has Jupiter at its very best, Venus, Saturn & Mars on offer along with the deep sky objects in Orion and Canis Major.

The news has a Comet ISON saga round-up, China’s Chang’e-3 moon lander, Jupiter’s moon Europa spewing water into space & new exoplanet updates.

In the 5MC, Paul explains the mystery and awe of Pulsating Stars – Pulsars.

Ralph interviews astrophysicist & The Sky at Night host, Dr Chris Lintott.

And the Q&A has questions on Martian meteor showers and the difference between open and globular clusters.

2013 End of Year Special




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This pantomime of an episode contains some mild bad language and puerile humour.

Join us for a round up of the best astronomy news from 2013, a look forward to the highlights in 2014 and a glimpse inside the normally secretive Cydonia Base at Christmas time.

Naturally, no end of year Awesome Astronomy show would be complete without the habitual gaffes and outtakes.

Happy Holidays, thank you for downloading and listening to us in 2013 and best wishes for 2014.

#18 – December 2013

We have the planets, meteors showers and moon phases to look out for in December and a look at the deep sky objects in the constellations, Taurus & Gemini.

In the news we have Comet ISON at perihelion, a guide to comets, the Indian Mars Orbiter Mission and NASA’s MAVEN both setting sail for Mars and a bizarre asteroid that thinks it’s a comet. In the 5MC, Paul explains the mysterious and awe-inspiring majesty of a familiar object in the night sky – The Orion Nebula. Perfect to listen to as you observe it!

We open up our Christmas competition to win a year’s subscription to Astronomy Now magazine and the European Southern Observatory’s 2014 calendar.

We have two interviews this month – Dr Gareth Williams, who officially calculated Comet ISON’s trajectory, tells us all about the comet; and Dr Gerhard Schwehm, ESA Project Scientist on the Giotto and Rosetta comet-chasing spacecraft missions.

Finally, we answer listeners’ questions about the evidence for ancient alien visitors and the visibility of merging inactive black holes.

#17 – November 2013




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This month we have the planets, meteor showers and moon phases to look out for in November and a look at the deep sky objects in the Cetus, Pisces & Sculptor constellations.

In the news we have the sad death of Scott Carpenter, the US government shutdown, water in Martian rocks, the completion of ESO’s ALMA  array & ESA’s upcoming GAIA mission.

In the 5MC, Paul reveals all we know about dark energy: a cosmological constant, a qualtum vacuum energy or quintessence (you decide).

We interview Pauline Gagnon from CERN about the Higgs and how we find dark matter, supersymmetry and extra dimensions; and we round off with listeners’ questions on rogue planets, the Earth’s gravity & observing.

#16 – October 2013




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Highlights of September’s skies at the AstroCamp star party with the BBC TV cameras. The Sky at Night team joinined us for some observing in Wales.

A penumbral lunar eclipse, a round up of the planets visible in the northern hemisphere this month, a couple of meteor showers to get you outside, and the deep sky treats in Perseus, Camelopardalis and Auriga in our October sky guide.News that Voyager 1 is in interstellar space, NASA’s latest mission to explore the thin lunar atmosphere and moon’s dust and some research to get us hopeful for a fine display from Comet ISON later this year.

The violent but universe enriching ‘Death of Stars’ is explained in Paul’s 5 Minute Concept.

An interview on the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation, astronomy research funding cuts and the Planck and Herschel space telescopes in this month’s interview with researcher, writer and broadcaster Dr Chris North.

And in Q&A we answer listeners’ questions on brown dwarfs and Saturn’s rings.