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Solar System Topics

  • Ursid Meteor Surprise

    2000Sept. 20, 2011

    The normally meek Ursid meteor shower could surprise sky watchers with a powerful outburst on Dec 22nd when Earth passes through a dust stream from periodic comet Tuttle.

  • Some CometsLike it Hot

    2000April 6, 2011

    Amateur astronomers are discovering pieces of a giant comet that broke apart in antiquity as the fragments zoom perilously close to the Sun. You can join the hunt, too. All you need is a computer and an internet connection to view realtime data from the orbiting ESA/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory.

  • 5/5/2000: The Meteor Shower

    2000April 6, 2011

    The eta Aquarid meteor shower, caused by bits of debris from Halley's Comet, will peak on May 5-6, 2000. Lunar observers will be watching The Moonon the nights after the shower for possible signs of meteorite impacts.

  • From the Drawing Board to the Stars

    2000April 6, 2011

    In this scientific human interest story, Dr. Jim Burch describes what it's like to visualize a modern space mission and then, years later, to make it happen. Burch shares his experiences as a competitor for mission funding, as a coordinator of far-flung personnel, and as an onlooker during launch.

  • June's Invisible Meteors

    2000April 6, 2011

    During the next week thousands of Meteorswill streak through the sky, but don't expect to see many. They are the Arietid and zeta Perseid Meteors-- the most intense daytime meteor showers of the year. For many meteor enthusiasts, the best way to enjoy the show could be by listening to meteor echoes on a ham or common FM radio.

  • A Rare Meteor Shower

    2003Sept. 20, 2011

    Earth is approaching a cometary debris stream that might trigger an unusual Antarctic meteor shower this weekend.

  • Genesis Reentry

    2004April 6, 2011

    On September 8th, a daylight fireball will streak across the western United States. It's Genesis, returning samples of the Sun to Earth.