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

Stellar Fingerprints

Spectral Types For Spring Nights

Hidden within the subtle hues of the stars are the keys to their temperatures and compositions. Get acquainted with the classic OBAFGKM spectral sequence through real stars you can see on a spring night.

This Week's Sky at a Glance logo

This Week’s Sky at a Glance, March 25 – April 2

Friday, March 25 • By 11 p.m. now, the bowl of the Big Dipper stands upside down high in the north-northeast, straight over the bowl of the dim Little Dipper as if dumping water into it. In the fall, they do the reverse. Saturday, March 26 • The huge, bright Winter Hexagon is still in…

Trifid Nebula sketch

The Trifid Nebula

Here's some further reading on the stages of star formation visible in the Trifid Nebula, subject of the May 2016 issue's Going Deep column.