Thursday, July 1, 2010

Total solar eclipse, bright star asteroid occultations, planet 'dance' highlights of July

A lot will happen this month, though most of the highlights are not global events - as was the partial lunar eclipse last month: stories here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here, picture collections here, here, here, here and in this forum and good individual pictures or sets here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here (the latter from the ISS), scenic views here, here, here, here and here and some less convincing samples here, here and here and esp. here and here. The highlights for July (see summaries here, hier, hier, here, here, hier und hier) also include the beginning of many planet constellations in the evening sky as discussed hier and here.Comet McNaught has faded instead of brightened and thus remained stuck at 5th mag. as this analysis and these data show - thus it's extremely unlikely that it will be spotted during the solar eclipse when it is close to Mercury. Nonetheless the tail remained nice as pictures from the nights of June 29/30, June 27/28, June 24/25, June 23/24 (also a movie and more, more and more pics), a visual report from June 22/23 and pics from June 21/22 (more, June 19/20, June 18/19 (more) and June 16/17 (more, more) show. Also a Russian article, a pic w/weird colors, a German radio report - and a paper on comet C/2010 A2 (LINEAR) arguing for more than just an asteroid collision.

SEB-free Jupiter remains impressive as pictures e.g. from June 29, June 28 (note the chain of dark dots!) and June 25 (more and one year earlier) show. Also the history of these SEB fadings, an animation from last year and an ESA Release and article on the June 3 impact. • Also more on the star occultation by a KBO in a Williams College Release, a Stuttgart Univ. PM and stories here, here, here, here and hier. • On the Sun prominence sequences from June, a CME in May, solar sonifications (more) and a visualization of the solar cycle which is making more strange headlines.

In other news a Brazilian meteorite fall right after a bolide, a bolide in Washington, the - invisible - AMNH meteorite collection, a meteor tracking system at NMSU, more Giacobinids nonsense and a video report on the 2002 fullmoon Leonids. • The NLC season is now clearly underway (125 years after these clouds were first noted): great pictures from several nights in June (dito, earlier, still earlier, even earlier) and from the nights of June 28/29 (more, more), June 25/26, June 24/25, June 20/21, June 19/20 and June 18/19. And July may well be the best month to watch!

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