The Astronomy Show 18.03.19
On the Astronomy Show tonight news from NASA that a meteor exploded around 15 miles above the Bering Sea off the Russian Kamchatka Peninsula on December 18th 2018. The explosion which had as much energy as 10 Hiroshima bombs was caused by an object only around half the size of the Chelyabinsk meteor in February 2013 which also air burst and injured around 1,000 people with flying glass due to the sonic booms that shattered windows. By good fortune this one exploded over the sea. This is the second large object in just 5 years. Is this normal or are there more lumps of rock hitting the Earth than in the past?
The regular features include the astronomy news with stories including Cosmic Ray Neutrons have been detected on high flying aeroplanes which poses the question how safe is to fly at these high altitudes for long periods. There is evidence that a major solar storm hit the Earth more than 2,000 years ago and a dust ring has been discovered in the planet Mercury's orbit.
I will be looking at what we can see in the night sky during the next 7 nights plus news that sometimes it is possible to see the planet Uranus without binoculars and how the constellation of Cancer used to be used by astronomers as an ancient weather forecasting guide.The constellation profile this week will be Canis Minor the Lesser Dog.
The Astronomical Scrapbook which looks at anniversaries this week includes the first space walk in 1965, the solar eclipse of 1140 AD which astrologers said forecast the capture of King Stephen and Edward Pigott discovered M 64 the Black Eye Galaxy in 1779. The Messier marathon is now at M 97 the Owl Nebula in Ursa Major and there will be the round up of news from astronomical societies in the north of England.
The Astronomy Show every Monday evening between 7.00 pm and 9.00 pm only on Drystone Radio 103.5 FM. You can hear the show live on line at www.drystoneradio.com or listen to the show later on the Drystone Radio Podcast.