Observing

The sky is always changing. Planets dance in the evening, stars explode as supernovae, and new comets grace dawn skies. Here we bring together all the astronomy tips and resources you’ll need to observe the glories that light up the heavens.

Sky at a Glance – Our most popular column. Find out what’s up in the sky tonight!
Sky Tour Podcasts – Discover your night sky in a guided monthly tour led by J. Kelly Beatty
Interactive Observing Tools – Plan your observing tonight with our sky chart and other tools
Celestial Objects to Observe – A treasure chest of observing advice categorized by object type
Astronomy and Stargazing Projects – Find blueprints for observing projects

October 2014's partial solar eclipse

Solar and Lunar Eclipses in 2016

There will be four eclipses in 2016. Highlights are a total solar eclipse on March 9th (visible from Indonesia) and an annular solar eclipse on September 1st (central Africa). But we'll see just two barely-there penumbral eclipses, on March 23rd and September 16th.

What - No Meatballs?

Picking Plums in the Galactic Anticenter

In winter, we face the Milky Way's anticenter, a little-explored region offering goodies for telescopes both large and small. Few give much thought to the Milky Way's anticenter, a lonely locale 180° opposite the busy metropolis of Sagittarius, where the summer Milky Way glitters like Vegas. On winter nights, Sagittarius lies behind us, hidden by Earth's bulk. Step outside around...