Astronomy

Marjan Lazarevski / Flickr

Lately, Lake Effect has been talking with astronomy contributor Jean Creighton about how things form in the universe – things such as stars.

This month, the focus is a little closer to home, or maybe a lot closer to home. How do planets, like our own, come to be? Lake Effect astronomy contributor Jean Creighton is the director of the Manfred Olson Planetarium, and she explains that stars come before planets:

Uriel Sinai / Getty Images

Last week was a great one for fans of the aurora borealis.  The Northern Lights were visible far further south than normal, thanks to increased solar activity. Ambient light made seeing them basically impossible in metro Milwaukee, but out in the country, there were lots of sightings.

So what’s responsible for the shimmering, colorful atmospheric magic?  Astronomy contributor and director of the Manfred Olson Planetarium at UW-Milwaukee, Jean Creighton, explained to Bonnie North exactly how they work - starting with two basic ingredients: the sun and the earth's atmosphere.

NASA's Marshall Flight Space Center / Flickr

Jean Creighton, Lake Effect astronomy contributor and director of the Manfred Olson Planetarium at UW-Milwaukee, joins Bonnie North every month to discuss the many different topics the universe and space exploration has to offer.

nasa.gov

From landing a probe on a comet to even more discoveries on Mars, it’s been quite a year for astrophysics and cosmology.

ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO

It was big news last week when the European Space Agency landed a probe on a comet. 

NASA

The Rosetta mission - the first probe ever to land on the surface of a comet - had no people aboard.  

NASA/JPL/MSSS

There was much excitement in India yesterday when that country’s first effort to send an orbiter to Mars succeeded. 

Ryan Wick, flickr

Astronomy contributor Jean Creighton joined us to talk about what stars and constellations are visible to us in the night sky this month. 

"It’s going too fast and the isotope ratios are different; this one came from elsewhere," says Creighton. "That means that you can look up at a really bright star. Arcturus is really bright, and pretty, and you’re looking at a piece of another galaxy."

Wikimedia Commons

After a long winter of what felt like Wisconsin’s own “Polar Vortex,” it’s time to escape from under our roofs and enjoy the longest day of the year. 

How Astronomers Conduct Research

Feb 28, 2014
Bill Jacobus, flickr

When the whole universe is out there to explore, how do astronomers decide what questions they want to ask?

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