The night sky for October 2017 (Audio)
... on a dark, moonless night. These are the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds, two small irregular dwarf galaxies that neighbour our own. Whilst these galaxies are much smaller than the Milky Way, they still contain billions of stars. To the top-right of the SMC you may spot a faint fuzzy 'star'. This object is not actually associated with the SMC but is a beautiful globular cluster called 47 Tucanae, or NGC 104 located just a tenth of the distance away on the outskirts of our own galaxy. At arou...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201710/ - [Duration: 19:11, 8.8 MB]
March 2016 (Audio)
... can see in the march night sky from Ian Morison and Haritina Mogusanu [05:58. 660 - 32:07. 621] and our live studio audience pose their questions to the largest ever Ask An Astronomer panel [1:03:52. 335 - 1:49:42. 400] .
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201603/ - [Duration: 154:44, 70.9 MB]
October 2012 (Audio)
... what to see in the night sky from Ian Morrison and John Field [41:03 - 58:21] and Megan gives us this month's astronomy news [00:46 - 09:17].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201210/ - [Duration: 60:36, 27.8 MB]
July 2016 (Audio)
... happening in the July night sky [59:24 - 1:33:24] and Fiona, Minnie and Alex consider the impact of the EU referendum on UK science.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201607/ - [Duration: 97:02, 44.5 MB]
April 2017 (Audio)
... can see in the April night sky from Ian Morison and Claire Bretherton [61:33 - 81:56], and we clear up some loose ends.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201704/ - [Duration: 83:46, 38.4 MB]
November 2012 (Audio)
... miss in the November night sky [36:53 - 55:53] and Megan gives us a round up of the latest astronomy news [02:12 - 09:22].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201211/ - [Duration: 58:16, 26.7 MB]
January 2014 (Audio)
... see in the January night sky from Ian Morison and John Field [30:29 - 45:34]. Meanwhile, we completely forget that it's the Jodcast's eighth birthday.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201401/ - [Duration: 49:54, 22.9 MB]
December 2009 (Audio)
... see in the December night sky [50:29-67:32]. Our cover art shows some of the presenters and audience who braved the rain at Jodrell Bank during Jodcast Live.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200912/ - [Duration: 88:45, 40.6 MB]
September 2010 (Audio)
... seen in the September night sky in the northern hemisphere from Ian Morison [37:03 - 47:12] and in the southern hemisphere from John Field at the Carter Observatory [47:33 - 52:58].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201009/ - [Duration: 57:59, 26.7 MB]
April 2014 (Audio)
Only Human. In the show this time, we conduct a linguistic interchange with Prof. Ian Shipsey regarding the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope [08:27 - 30:55], Indy issues a bulletin acknowledging the latest triumph of computational analysis in astronomy [01:31 - 08:13] and Ian Morison and John Field describe what the human eye can detect during the nocturnal hours of the lunar period known as April [31:18 - 48:09]. Meanwhile, our new, more efficient presenters bring us superior odds and ends.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201404/ - [Duration: 50:00, 22.9 MB]
December 2012 (Audio)
... bring us the December night sky [47:49 - 66:17] and Megan gives her last-ever round-up of the astronomy news [04:36 - 14:22].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201212/ - [Duration: 72:00, 33.0 MB]
August 2010 (Audio)
... seen in the August night sky in the northern hemisphere from Ian Morison [50:16 - 62:05] and in the southern hemisphere from John Field at the Carter Observatory [62:13 - 66:40].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201008/ - [Duration: 70:05, 32.1 MB]
July 2010 (Audio)
... be seen in the July night sky in the northern hemisphere from Ian Morison [46:24 - 61:43] and in the southern hemisphere from the Carter Observatory [61:52 - 67:18].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201007/ - [Duration: 71:40, 32.8 MB]
Ask an astronomer - craters and lights in the sky (Audio)
Tim O'Brien answers listener questions. Margaret Feaster asks about the formation of the dark "seas" or maria on the Moon and about the distribution of craters. Checkout the HD video of the Moon (and Earth) taken by the Kaguya spacecraft. Alistair Macpherson asks whether the two orange lights he saw in the sky from Cheshire (UK) could have been anything to do with the launch of the Ares I-X rocket. It all depends on whether the rocket was visible above his local horizon. Jeffery Smith writes in ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200911Extra/ - [Duration: 16:31, 7.6 MB]
November 2009 (Audio)
... see in the November night sky [43:53-57:24]. Our cover art shows Fox Mason at the control desk of the Parkes Telescope in 1970.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200911/ - [Duration: 70:07, 32.1 MB]
Ask an astronomer - gas giants, sounds from space and our local spiral arm (Audio)
... identify objects in the night sky. Smart phone apps such as Google Sky Map are also useful in these situations.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201101Extra/ - [Duration: 17:11, 7.9 MB]
The night sky for September 2017 (Audio)
... brightest star in the night sky, and the only, lonely bright star in its vicinity. Follow up observations, however, failed to confirm the planet and left many doubting its existence. It took until 2012 before Fomalhaut b was independently detected and confirmed. Its controversial past has earned it the nickname "the zombie planet", a planet resurrected from the dead. Wishing you clear skies from the team here at Space Place at Carter Observatory.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201709/ - [Duration: 19:47, 9.1 MB]
January 2010 (Audio)
... see in the January night sky [52:06-67:37]. Our cover art shows the logo of the International Year of Astronomy.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201001/ - [Duration: 71:55, 32.9 MB]
February 2010 (Audio)
... see in the February night sky [52:19-64:39]. Our cover art shows the Isaac Newton Group of telescopes from the air.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201002/ - [Duration: 70:09, 32.2 MB]
January 2011 Extra (Audio)
Stargazing. In this show we talk to the presenters of BBC Stargazing Live: Dara Ó Briain [03:20 - 18:29], Mark Thompson [19:28 - 34:45] and Professor Brian Cox [35:00 - 50:41]. As always, Dr Tim O'Brien answers your astronomical questions [56:14 - 73:01] and we report on some odds and ends from the world of astronomy
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201101Extra/ - [Duration: 76:22, 35.0 MB]
November 2009 Extra (Audio)
In this show we find out about the ongoing upgrades to the Very Large Array in New Mexico from Dr Rick Perley [00:51-31:20]. We put your astronomical questions to Dr Tim O'Brien [36:22-52:37], get a summary of recent news and events [31:21-36:22] and round-up the feedback we've received since the last show.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200911Extra/ - [Duration: 54:21, 24.9 MB]
The night sky for July 2017 (Audio)
... second brightest in the nighttime sky. Its Maori name is Atu tahi or Au tahi, which means to stand alone, because of its position just outside the main band of our Galaxy. In the other direction , the Milky Way drops down to the eastern horizon and the bright star Altair in the constellation of Aquila, the Eagle, which rises around 9pm at the start of the month. In the morning skies our last visible planet, brilliant Venus, rises after 4am. Venus is so bright that you can really only mistake i...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201707/ - [Duration: 17:52, 8.2 MB]
The night sky for August 2017 (Audio)
... sky for most of the night. A waxing gibbous moon passes close to Saturn on the 3rd and 31st of the month, whilst on the evening of the 25th, a thin 3 day old crescent Moon will sit just below Jupiter. The Moon - On the 22nd of August the Moon will pass directly between the Earth and the Sun, causing a total Solar eclipse. The eclipse path will run across the United States, but unfortunately no part of it will be visible from New Zealand. The next total Solar eclipse visible from our shores won'...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201708/ - [Duration: 18:17, 8.4 MB]
The night sky for June 2017 (Audio)
... compass, a map of the night sky that was used to navigate the Pacific Ocean and bring our ancestors to Aotearoa. Today Matariki is a chance for all New Zealanders to unite in celebration of this great land we all call home: its a chance to reflect on the state of the planet we live on and the bounty that we receive from Mother Earth, to celebrate our shared history and to reflect on our very unique place in the Universe. Nga mihi o Te Tau Hou ki a koutou katoaWishing you all a very Happy New Yea...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201706/ - [Duration: 23:24, 10.7 MB]
Interview with Toa Waaka (Audio)
... who were lost to the night; and about the ways migration has influenced different dialects and aspects of Maori culture on islands all over the Pacific Ocean, from New Zealand, to the Easter Islands, to Hawai'i. The interview begins with a Karakia: the Karakia of Creation.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201606/ - [Duration: 39:12, 18.0 MB]
March 2013 Extra (Audio)
Plancking. In the show this time, Dr Paddy Leahy [27:17 - 51:15] tells us about today's exciting new results from the Planck mission, Prof Richard Davis [1:50 - 27:06] tells us about the Planck instruments and satellite in this month's JodBite, and your astronomical questions are answered by Dr Iain McDonald [61:45 - 68:53] in Ask an Astronomer.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201303Extra/ - [Duration: 70:57, 32.6 MB]
Radio Astronomy (Video)
Dr Tim O'Brien presents a video all about the science of radio astronomy and its window on the invisible Universe: the history, the role of Jodrell Bank and some of the incredible objects in the radio sky.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/video/radioastronomy/ - [Duration: 09:34, 50.6 MB]
March 2011 Extra (Audio)
Glorious. In this show, Professor Derek Ward-Thompson tells us about the early stages of star formation [00:49 - 14:06] and Libby talks to Dr Jay Farihi about locating the remains of planets around white dwarfs [14:15 - 27:18]. Dr Iain McDonald answers your far-out questions [37:18 - 43:59], we bring you the latest astronomical odds and ends and there is a round up your feedback since the last show.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201103Extra/ - [Duration: 48:25, 22.2 MB]
December 2008 Extra (Audio)
It's the last show before Christmas so the show is a little shorter than usual. First up we bring news of two special video episode that will be out in the next few days. In our interview [04:27-27:17] we talk to Philip Best about galaxies and a new low-frequency telescope named LOFAR. We also bring you some stocking filler ideas [28:27-32:37] and round-up the feedback we've received since the last show.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200812Extra/ - [Duration: 37:39, 17.3 MB]
November 2016 Extra (Audio)
Sleeping Satellites. In the show this time, Katie Detwiler talks to us about the cultural anthropology of ALMA, Dr. Joe Zuntz tells us about weak lensing and his departure from Jodrell Bank and your astronomical questions are answered by Minnie, Ben and George in Ask an Astronomer.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201611Extra/ - [Duration: 90:18, 41.4 MB]
The night sky for May 2017 (Audio)
... magnitude almost overnight, and whilst it is always hard to predict how bright a comet is going to get, this one is definitely worth keeping an eye on. Wishing you clear skies from the team here at Space Place at Carter Observatory.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201705/ - [Duration: 19:41, 9.0 MB]
The night sky for April 2017 (Audio)
... left of Saturn on the night of the 16th. Venus is moving quickly into our morning skies, rising a little over an hour before the Sun at the start of the month and 3 hours before at the end, when it will be joined in the dawn skies by faint Mercury sat lower and to the right of bright Venus. Wishing you clear skies, and happy galaxy hunting, from the team here at Space Place at Carter Observatory.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201704/ - [Duration: 20:40, 9.5 MB]
March 2012 Extra (Audio)
The Light Side. In the show this time, Prof. Philippa Browning tells us about the upcoming National Astronomy Meeting and solar physics in the JodBite [2:07 - 15:52], we talk to Prof. Tom Shanks about cosmological theories that avoid the need for dark matter and dark energy [16:06 - 31:35] and Dr Cristiano Sabiu discusses how to study the large-scale Universe using observation and theory [31:47 - 39:14]. Your astronomical questions are answered by Dr Tim O'Brien [49:13 - 69:23] and we round up s...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201203Extra/ - [Duration: 73:09, 33.5 MB]
January 2012 Extra (Audio)
Bitten. In the show this time, Dr David Floyd [12:24 - 35:22] tells us about microlensing and we talk to Dr Tim O'Brien [01:22 - 12:17] about his role at Jodrell Bank in the first ever JodBite. Your questions are answered [43:53 - 55:39] by Dr Iain McDonald in Ask an Astronomer and we round up some odds and ends from the world of astronomy.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201201Extra/ - [Duration: 60:59, 28.0 MB]
October 2006 (Audio)
... you can see in the night sky and Nick gets Tim O'Brien to answer questions about coordinates and viewing the sky.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200610/ - [Duration: 74:44, 25.7 MB]
Ask an astronomer (Audio)
... while watching the night sky. These points of light do not return in the same spot. What I am seeing?"
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201303Extra/ - [Duration: 07:24, 3.5 MB]
The night sky for November 2016 (Audio)
... and setting after midnight. Mercury also makes an appearance this month. On the 20th it moves between Saturn and Antares forming a line of similar brightness "stars" along the dusk horizon, before continuing to move up away from the pair. Unfortunately, Mercury's evening appearance this month will not be as favourable as that of August this year, as Mercury will set before twilight ends. Look out for the Leonid meteor shower, which peaks around the 17th of the month, when the Earth passes throu...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201611/ - [Duration: 17:19, 7.9 MB]
The night sky for August 2016
... and a dark tranparent night it should even be possible to spot its moon Triton. August 1st after sunset: Jupiter, Mercury, Regulus and Venus form a line in the Western Sky. Given a clear sky and a very low western horizon you may be able to spot a line of Jupiter, Mercury and Venus along with Regulus in Leo. Binoculars may well be needed, but please do not use them until the Sun has set. August 5th after sunset: Jupiter and a thin waxing crescent MoonAs Jupiter slowly sinks into the Sun's glare,...
MercuryMercury reaches greatest elongation from the Sun on August 16th but, sadly, never gets that high above the horizon in the western sky. It magnitude falls throughout August from -0.2 to +1.1 whilst its angular size increases from 6 to 9.5 arcseconds.
The night sky for June 2016 (Audio)
... just after the longest night of the year, the winter solstice, which is also occurring in June. The next new Moon after the 5th of June is on 4th of July. Technically, the period of the new year lasts for about a month from one new Moon to the other and for some tribes was the time in between the years, when everything would reset and people would visit the year that has passed and think ahead to the year that would follow. You can hear more about Matariki and Maori astronomy in this month's in...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201606/ - [Duration: 28:25, 13.0 MB]
The night sky for March 2017 (Audio)
... on a dark, moonless night. These are the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds, two small irregular dwarf galaxies that neighbour our own. Whilst these galaxies are much smaller than the Milky Way, combined they still contain billions of stars. The best time to look out for these galaxies is around the new moon on the 28th of the month, when they will be high in the south after dark. Alpha and Beta Centauri are the first and second brightest stars in the constellation of Centaurus. The constellat...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201703/ - [Duration: 19:07, 8.8 MB]
The night sky for February 2017 (Audio)
... brightest star in our night sky. It is about 35 light years away from us, whilst Castor is in fact a sextuple star system located 52 light years from Earth. Nearby to Eta Geminorum, at the foot of the twin of Castor, is the open star cluster M35, covering an area almost the size of the full moon. Under good conditions it can be seen with the unaided eye as a hazy star, but binoculars or a wide-field telescope will reveal more detail and are the best way to view this lovely cluster. Next to Gemini...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201702/ - [Duration: 20:24, 9.4 MB]
The night sky for February 2016
... northern hemisphere night sky during February 2016. Highlights of the monthFebruary - a great month to view JupiterThis is a great month to observe Jupiter. It now lies low down in Leo and so is still reasonably high in the ecliptic and hence, when due south, at an elevation of ~45 degrees. The features seen in the Jovian atmosphere have been changing quite significantly over the last few years - for a while the South Equatorial Belt vanished completely, but has now returned to its normal wide st...
April 2006 (Audio)
... you can see in the night sky during April. As a special treat we also get Ian and Tim's commentary from the 29th March total solar eclipse.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200604/ - [Duration: 74:34, 25.6 MB]
Interview with Prof Mike Lockwood (RAL and Southampton University) (Audio)
David Boyce talked to Mike Lockwood about the highly energetic particles from the Sun that will affect human spaceflight. He talks about the need for shielding, some of the difficulties involved and the possible use of electric fields to repel the particles.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704NAM/ - [Duration: 05:23, 1.9 MB]
January 2010 Extra (Audio)
We talk to Stewart Eyres about Sakauri's Object [01:07-18:08], we put your astronomical questions to Tim [22:22-46:18], and round-up your feedback. Apologies for the audio quality this time; one of our microphones has been playing up.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201001Extra/ - [Duration: 51:04, 23.4 MB]
June 2009 Extra (Audio)
Meteorites can tell us a surprising amount about our solar system and its environment. In this episode we talk to Ernst Zinner about his studies of pre-solar grains from meteorites [00:53-26:17]. As always we put your questions to Dr Tim O'Brien [27:37-41:56] and round-up the feedback we've received since the last show. We also chat about Jodcast Live!
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200906Extra/ - [Duration: 44:38, 20.5 MB]
March 2009 Extra (Audio)
With the 100 Hours of Astronomy quickly approaching, we find out what will be happening over the course of the four days [01:08-07:06] and get details about a 24 hour observatory webcast [07:38-13:21]. We chat about the launch of NASA's Kepler spacecraft to search for Earth-like planets and ESA's GOCE probe to map the Earth's gravity field. On a recent trip to the Netherlands Roy caught up with Gijs Nelemans to find out about the future LISA spacecraft to hunt for gravitational waves [30:50-53:4...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200903Extra/ - [Duration: 57:34, 26.4 MB]
February 2015 Extra (Audio)
User-friendly. In the show this time, we talk to Prof. Chris Lintott about the Zooniverse project [16:47 - 43:20], Dr. Bhaswati Bhattacharyya tells us about her search for nature's best clocks in this month's JodBite [00:49 - 16:40], and your astronomy questions are answered by Dr. Iain McDonald in Ask an Astronomer [58:45 - 68:25].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201502Extra/ - [Duration: 72:30, 33.2 MB]
NAM 2007 (Audio)
We're on the road in Preston at the UK's National Astronomy Meeting. Our first special show describes what NAM is and what happened on the first day. In our second show we catch up with Chris Wareing who announced results about the wakes left by dying sun-like stars as they pass through the interstellar medium. On the third day David Boyce (University of Leicester) and Paul Steele (University of Leicester) join us to chat about the various sessions that took place. We find out about the organisa...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704NAM/ - [Duration: 25:43, 8.8 MB]
Interview with Katie Detwiler (Audio)
... conditions of Chile's night sky- an important project for a country which considers the sky to be one of its natural resources.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201611Extra/ - [Duration: 38:23, 17.6 MB]
February 2012 Extra (Audio)
Turtle. In the show this time, Dr Danielle Fenech [11:32 - 27:15] tells us about starburst galaxies and we talk to Dr Ant Holloway [01:20 - 11:25] about his role at Jodrell Bank in the JodBite. Your astronomical questions are answered [33:26 - 44:42] by Dr Tim O'Brien in Ask an Astronomer and we round up some odds and ends from the world of astronomy.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201202Extra/ - [Duration: 48:19, 22.1 MB]
Interview with Mark Thompson (Audio)
... years staring up at the night sky, he tells us why seeing it for yourself is the best way to look at the Universe, and speaks about the ease with which anyone can make beautiful images of space with simple equipment. He discusses how todays connected World allows people to share the excitement of astronomy, even when it means they are talking about him missing a meteor on live television. Along the way, Mark talks about stargazing from a plane, being the real astronomer on Stargazing Live...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201101Extra/ - [Duration: 15:34, 7.2 MB]
September 2006 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky this month and Nick and Tim discuss the Moon receding from the Earth and they work out how many stars are larger and smaller than the Sun.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200609/ - [Duration: 73:44, 25.3 MB]
March 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky during March. We also get an alert about a total lunar eclipse taking place on 3rd March 2007 (check out the links in the show notes for more details).
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200703/ - [Duration: 67:23, 23.1 MB]
Interview with Dr Monica Grady (Open University) (Audio)
David Boyce chatted to Monica Grady about astro-biology including summer schools, ALH84001 (the meteorite from Mars), what meteorites can tell us, the possibility of life on Europa, her latest research and what she thinks may be the next big discoveries.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704NAM/ - [Duration: 08:01, 2.8 MB]
Ask an astronomer - flashes, bodies, Jovian aurorae and spiral arms (Audio)
... flashes across the night sky. Hope you can inform me what this may have been."Robyn asks about whether the unprotected human body would freeze on exposure to space or to the Martian surface. Interesting article about exposure to space. Michael Mouat from Shetland asks "How do Jupiter's satellites generate spots of aurorae at its poles?". Great picture of this on APOD. Sean asks about the route to becoming a professional astronomer. The Royal Astronomical Society have a good article about this (fr...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201001Extra/ - [Duration: 24:13, 11.1 MB]
December 2006 (Audio)
... can see in December's night sky. As we were feeling festive this month, we suggest some great, free, astronomy software (Stellarium, Google Earth and Celestia) that nobody should be without. We've also replaced our usual sci-fi style intro/outro with a Jodcast pantomime. It's certainly a long way from Kansas...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200612/ - [Duration: 68:25, 23.5 MB]
Interview with Prof. Chris Lintott (Audio)
Professor Chris Lintott from the University of Oxford talks to us about his citizen science project ‘The Zooniverse’ in this record-breaking, sixth interview. On becoming the most interviewed person on the Jodcast, he talks about the research, participants and unexpected discoveries in The Zooniverse. We learn about the variety of projects available, including new ones outside of Astronomy, and why citizen science is so valuable to the scientific world. He also discusses The Sky at Night and...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201502Extra/ - [Duration: 26:52, 12.3 MB]
July 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky this month. With so much to do, we might just have time to get it all done before quidditch practice.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200707/ - [Duration: 53:53, 18.5 MB]
Interview with Dr Chris Lintott (Oxford University) (Audio)
Stuart talked to Chris Lintott about his research into astro-chemistry. They also chatted about the fiftieth anniversary of the BBC's Sky At Night television programme and the special episodes that have been recorded.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704NAM/ - [Duration: 07:56, 2.7 MB]
Ask an astronomer - two suns, other side of planets, disappearing Sun, gravitational lensing and dark matter. (Audio)
Dr Tim O'Brien answers your astronomical questions:The first question this month is from Hayley. She wrote in to say 'Today around about 3pm the sun appeared to have a strip of colour to its side. It was like a mini rainbow but not as colourful. Also, it seemed to reflect causing it to look like there were two suns in the sky. What could cause this?'. The next question is from Patrick who asks 'What is the most interesting thing that you could find on the other side of planets that you wouldn't...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201202Extra/ - [Duration: 11:33, 5.3 MB]
Ask an astronomer - Software and Telescopes (Audio)
... your way around the night sky using binoculars or a small telescope with planetarium software. They talk about telescope mounts (azimuth-elevation and equitorial) and how they relate to celestial coordinate systems.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200610/ - [Duration: 12:23, 4.3 MB]
February 2006 (Audio)
... you can see in the night sky during February*. We also get a round up of all the latest news from the planets to the closing of the London planetarium.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200602/ - [Duration: 45:34, 15.7 MB]
Ask an astronomer - relativity, black holes, the Big Bang and extrasolar planets (Audio)
... general direction in our night sky is this star system? (I know I can't see it, but I just want to know which way!) Oh, and how old is the planet?
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201010Extra/ - [Duration: 25:59, 11.9 MB]
Interview with Prospery Simpemba (Astronomers Without Borders) (Audio)
... share the beauty of the night sky.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201005/ - [Duration: 03:29, 1.6 MB]
Ask an astronomer - interferometry, gravitational waves, and a ball of fire (Audio)
... "At around 10pm last night I sat out in the garden as I looked out into the sky there was a big bright orange ball like there was something on fire, so I rushed in to get my binoculars and looked at the object, it looked at about 32,000 feet probably more. The object WAS on fire and it was a dark triangular shape. Was anything reported your end? Thanks for your time on this. The area I live in is Leek in Staffordshire"
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200906Extra/ - [Duration: 14:36, 6.7 MB]
Interview with Ian Morison (Audio)
Our own night sky expert, Ian Morison, followed in the footsteps of Captain Cook by observing a transit of Venus at Astronomer's Point in the Dusky Sound fjord of New Zealand on the 6th of June. In this interview, he tells us about his voyage and how he attempted to measure the astronomical unit by combining his transit timings with those of a fellow observer in Alaska. He also explains why a Venus transit is a special event, and talks about historical attempts to measure the distance from the E...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201207/ - [Duration: 10:03, 4.7 MB]
Ask an astronomer - angular resolution, meteorites and exoplanets. (Audio)
... was looking at the night sky, a dim star suddenly became extremely bright and then suddenly disappeared like a lightbulb blowing. Could you please give me some further information?" In his answer, Iain refers to some publicly available tools that can be used to track satellites: Heavens-Above and SpaceWeather. Pat O'Grady emailed us and asks: "For exoplanets, the search is to find stars with planets by why not start from the opposite assumption? Why is a planetless star not the exception rather...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201207Extra/ - [Duration: 10:40, 4.9 MB]
Interview with Dr Lucie Green (Mullard Space Science Laboratory) (Audio)
Stuart Lowe talked to Lucie Green about the Sun and International Heliophysical Year. Lucie tells us what it is and why there is a big connection between the Sun and Earth.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704NAM/ - [Duration: 06:44, 2.3 MB]
Interview with Dr Chris Wareing (University of Manchester) (Audio)
Nick Rattenbury talked to Chris Wareing about his numerical simulations of the wakes left by star near the end of their lives moving quickly through the interstellar medium. This research was presented at the UK National Astronomy Meeting on 17th April 2007.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704NAM/ - [Duration: 09:35, 3.3 MB]
May 2010 Extra (Audio)
In this episode we have an audio tour of an exhibition of portraits of astronomers [02:08-31:10], we hear about some of the latest results from the Herschel space observatory [31:43-36:10], and Tim answers your questions [40:21-63:37].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201005Extra/ - [Duration: 00:17, 0.1 MB]
Interview with Mike Simmons (Astronomers Without Borders) (Audio)
... chance to view the night sky. If you have a telescope you can host an event in your neighbourhood and register it on the global list. April 5th is not just Sunday but Sun Day and will be a chance to enjoy and appreciate our local star (note that looking at the Sun is dangerous so make sure that you observe the Sun safely).
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200903Extra/ - [Duration: 06:14, 2.9 MB]
October 2010 Extra (Audio)
Have a nice day! In this show we talk to Dr Ronnie Jansson about magnetic fields in space [01:01 - 14:20], Professor Dennis Zaritsky tells us about the evolution of galaxies [14:20 - 26:24] and Professor Andrew MacFadyen talks about the deaths of stars [26:24 - 34:13]. As always, Dr Tim O'Brien answers your astronomical questions [36:11 - 61:54], we report on some odds and ends from the world of (astro)physics and we round up your feedback since the last show.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201010Extra/ - [Duration: 68:38, 31.5 MB]
Interview with Dr Greg Sloan (Audio)
... out of the visible night sky! Dr Sloan also talks about the data he accumulated from the Spitzer Space Telescope and the possibilities of using ALMA (a topical telescope at the moment) and the Planck satellite for his research.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201110/ - [Duration: 21:18, 9.8 MB]
Interview with Professor Vik Dhillon (Audio)
... take images of the night sky every 5 milliseconds. It has travelled the world observing compact phenomena, such as black holes and neutron stars which vary on second or even millisecond scales. More recently, he has been involved with HiPERCAM, which can capture 1000 images per second.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201610/ - [Duration: 31:52, 14.6 MB]
July 2012 Extra (Audio)
Anti-ageing. In this episode we talk to Dr Fraser Clarke [14:37 - 24:05] about the E-ELT telescope, Dr Lisa Kaltenegger [24:28 - 29:40] about rocky exoplanets, and Dr Michelle Collins [29:58 - 42:49] about dwarf galaxies. We also talk to Kim Mance [1:53 - 14:27] about life as a controller at Jodrell Bank Observatory in this month's JodBite, and your astronomical questions are answered by Dr Iain McDonald in Ask an Astronomer [51:41 - 62:44].
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201207Extra/ - [Duration: 64:33, 29.6 MB]
Spring 1990 (Audio)
... look out for in the night sky during spring and summer [35:21-43:21], and answer your questions [46:01-56:26]. Our sleeve notes show an artist's impression of the Hubble Space Telescope.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201004/ - [Duration: 57:52, 26.5 MB]
August 2006 (Audio)
... August from 9pm until midnight and we also mention our exciting plans to podcast from the International Astronomical Union's General Assembly this month.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200608/ - [Duration: 61:11, 21.0 MB]
January 2007 (Audio)
... can see in January's night sky. We also get a round up of interesting astronomy podcasts and set our first ever competition. You'll have to listen to find out what the question is!
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200701/ - [Duration: 71:20, 24.5 MB]
The night sky for December 2016 (Audio)
... and sets close to midnight. Mars is much fainter and to the top right of Venus, moving through Capricorn and into Aquarius over the course of the month The Phoenicids reach their peak on 6th December and are thought to be associated with the comet D/1819 W1 (Blanpain). With the radiant in the constellation of Phoenix, not far from Achernar, this shower is well placed for southern hemisphere observers throughout the hours of darkness. The minor Puppid-Velids meteor shower also reaches its peak ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201612/ - [Duration: 21:33, 9.9 MB]
The night sky for October 2016 (Audio)
... always visible in our night sky, the Large and Small Magellanic clouds, which are circumpolar here in New Zealand. To find the Magellanic Clouds, first look for the bright star Canopus, twinkling colourfully, low in the southeast. The Magellanic clouds appear as two small smudges of light above it, they are irregular dwarf galaxies that neighbour our own. Whilst these galaxies are much smaller than the Milky Way, they still contain hundreds of millions of stars. The Large Magellanic Cloud, or L...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201610/ - [Duration: 23:22, 10.7 MB]
The night sky for May 2016 (Audio)
... what to see in the night sky is Philips's Night Sky Atlas, by Robin Scagell and with maps by Will Tirion. Every time someone asks me what telescope to buy, I ask them if they do have a pair of binoculars. If the answer is no, then I always say don't buy a telescope if you have not looked at the sky with binoculars. Even if you only used them to locate objects that are too faint for the naked eye or hidden by light pollution. Some of the best views of the larger star clusters, bright nebulae and...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201605/ - [Duration: 33:02, 15.2 MB]
The night sky for September 2016 (Audio)
... always visible in our night time skies. Vega, in the constellation of Lyra, is the fifth brightest star in the sky, and at just 25 light years away, one of the brightest in our local neighbourhood. It is also one of the best studied, and was the first star outside our Sun to be photographed in 1850. Vega is also extensively used by astronomers for photometric calibration. It is used as a zero point to define the UBVRI photometric system first introduced in the 1950s, and extended in the 1970s, t...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201609/ - [Duration: 19:16, 8.9 MB]
The night sky for July 2016
... CopernicusThese are great nights to observe two of the greatest craters on the Moon, Tycho and Copernicus, as the terminator is nearby. Tycho is towards the bottom of Moon in a densely cratered area called the Southern Lunar Highlands. It is a relatively young crater which is about 108 million years old. It is interesting in that it is thought to have been formed by the impact of one of the remnents of an asteroid that gave rise to the asteroid Baptistina. Another asteroid originating fr...
The night sky for April 2016 (Audio)
... the luminary of the night sky. Jupiter is in Leo. Neighbouring Leo are Sextans and Hydra. Sextans is a "minor" equatorial constellation, a designation that made me smile. This constellation was actually invented by the famous stellar cartographer Johannes Hevelius to celebrate his sextant, a beloved instrument he used to map the sky. A copy of his famous maps adorns the ceiling of our beautiful library inside Space Place at Carter Observatory. Unknown to Hevelius, inside the celestial Sextant t...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201604/ - [Duration: 36:58, 17.0 MB]
The night sky for January 2016
... northern hemisphere night sky during January 2016. The StarsIn the mid to late evening January sky the brilliant constellation of Orion may be seen in the south. Moving up and to the right - following the line of the three stars of Orion's belt - brings one to Taurus; the head of the bull being outlined by the V-shaped cluster called the Hyades with its eye delineated by the orange red star Aldebaran. Further up to the right lies the Pleiades Cluster. Towards the zenith from Taurus lies the cons...
Mercury on New Year’s Day will shine at magnitude -0.4 about 7 degrees above the south-western horizon 30 minutes after sunset. Binoculars will be probably needed to spot it but please do not use them until after the Sun has set. Over the next week it falls back towards the horizon with a much reducing magnitude (down to +1.8) and will be increasingly difficult to spot. It passes through inferior conjunction with the Sun on January 14th and might be just possible to spot in the east before dawn at the end of the month shining at at magnitude 0.0. At its next inferior conjunction on May 9th it will be seen to transit across the face of the Sun, its first transit for 10 years.Mars, moving eastwards relative to the stars, starts the month in Virgo, 6 degrees from Spica, but moves into Libra mid month. Its brightness increases slightly from magnitude +1.3 to +0.8 during the month as the angular size of its disk increases from 5.6 to 6.8 arc seconds. Mars rises about 01:30 on New Year's Day and around half an hour earlier by month's end when it will lie just 1.3 degrees north of the double star Alpha Librae. Given really good seeing, some details on the surface such as Syrtis Major and the polar caps may be visible with a telescope, but will be far better seen at opposition in May when it will appear around three times wider.
The night sky for March 2016 (Audio)
... visibility as a test of the night-sky brightness near the horizon. I said earlier that at this time of the year, the Milky Way is splitting the sky into two almost equal sides. We just looked at the part that holds the ecliptic, which in the Southern hemisphere, here in Wellington New Zealand, is located on the North part of the sky. Let’s do some star hopping to get to the other side, in the South. One of my favourite sports, star hopping is jumping from bright star to bright star, to reach ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201603/ - [Duration: 26:31, 12.2 MB]
The night sky for October 2015 (Audio)
... on a dark moonless night. And finally, the planetsBright planets appear in the eastern dawn sky. Brilliant silver Venus rises two hours before the Sun through October. That's around 5 a. m. at the beginning of the month. Golden Jupiter is on the dawn horizon at 6 a. m. below and right of Venus. Between the two bright planets, at the beginning of the month, are the white star Regulus and the reddish planet Mars. Beyond Mars, Jupiter moves up the dawn sky. By mid-month it is passing Mars. The pa...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201510/ - [Duration: 37:15, 17.1 MB]
The night sky for November 2015 (Audio)
... were placed in the night sky so long ago. A tall mast rises from the canoe all the way to the star Achernar, which marks in the Northern World the end of the river Eridanus. The two beautiful galaxies that we know as the Magellanic Clouds are the sails of the waka. Atutahi, also known as Canopus, is the second brightest star in the sky and is the chief of all stars as well as the navigator of the canoe. Orion makes the stern post, it is elaborately carved and it goes all the way from Betelgeuse,...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201511/ - [Duration: 26:49, 12.3 MB]
The night sky for September 2015 (Audio)
... so that night after night the center of the galaxy appears lower and lower in the evening sky. Here, in the Southern Hemisphere, we are very lucky to see the Milky Way in all its brightness and beauty. The StarsMany of the brightest stars are scattered along or near the Milky Way. Starting from North is Albireo, the beautiful orange and blue double star, in the constellation of Cygnus or the Northern Cross. On the left hand side and close to the Milky Way lays Vega, due north at dusk and settin...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201509/ - [Duration: 24:54, 11.4 MB]
The night sky for August 2015 (Audio)
... seen in our southern night sky as they are circumpolar, meaning they never set below our horizon. A Final Note From Claire... Thank you for listening to the August jodcast. I will shortly be heading off on maternity leave so our new Curator of Science, Haritina Mogosanu will be stepping in to produce the Southern skies section over the next few months. I look forward to catching up with you all again when I return in the New Year.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201508/ - [Duration: 18:37, 8.6 MB]
The night sky for May 2015 (Audio)
... and is the brightest night-time star. Following the Belt left leads to the V-shaped head of Taurus the Bull, with the orange star Aldebaran marking his Eye, and then to Matariki as it rises in the east-north-east. The Pleiades disappear from the sky in April, and their reappearance in early June indicates that the new year is approaching, with the next New Moon (or, in some areas, the next Full Moon) marking the actual turn of the year. This month, the New Moon happens on the 17th. Matariki, Ta...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201506/ - [Duration: 19:45, 9.1 MB]
The night sky for July 2015 (Audio)
... brightest star in the night sky at magnitude -0. 27. Beta Centauri appears almost as bright, with a combined magnitude of +0. 6. Using these stars to find the Southern Cross is as easy as ABC - Alpha, Beta, Crux.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201507/ - [Duration: 21:17, 9.9 MB]
The night sky for December 2015
... Over the next two nights following the 3rd/4th the dark crater Plato and the young crater Copernicus will come into view. This is a very interesting region of the Moon! Observe the International Space StationUse the link below to find when the space station will be visible in the next few days. In general, the space station can be seen either in the hour or so before dawn or the hour or so after sunset - this is because it is dark and yet the Sun is not too far below the horizon so that it c...
MercuryMercury, at magnitude -5 may be seen at the end of the month low in the south-western sky as it reaches greatest elongation on the 29th of December when it lies 20 degrees from the Sun. It will be only a few degrees above the horizon at twilight and so the use of binoculars and a low horizon will be needed to spot it - but please do not try until after the Sun has set!
The night sky for May 2015 (Audio)
... visible throughout the night and largely unhindered by the thin crescent Moon, it provides no more than 5 meteors per hour. To the lower-left of Saturn, in the constellation of Serpens, is the globular cluster M5, also called NGC 5904. At magnitude +5. 7, binoculars can be used to view it, while a small telescope picks out some of its hundreds of thousands of stars. It is home to over one hundred variable stars, the brightest of which is called Variable 42 and changes from magnitude +10. 6 to +12...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201505/ - [Duration: 18:46, 8.7 MB]
The night sky for April 2015 (Audio)
... during April 2015. The night of the 4th-5th sees the first lunar eclipse of the year, and also the backward move of the clocks in parts of the southern hemisphere. In Wellington, New Zealand, the penumbral phase begins at 22:03 NZDT (New Zealand Daylight Time, 13 hours ahead of Universal Time) as the Earth begins to obscure sunlight from the Moon's surface. The umbral phase, when sunlight is fully blocked from part of the Moon, starts at 23:17. The Moon is cast into total shadow for 7 minutes, f...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201504/ - [Duration: 14:52, 6.9 MB]
The night sky for January 2015 (Audio)
... before dawn or after nightfall. Red Mars is above and to the right of Venus and Mercury, and approaches Venus during the month. At a present distance of around 300 million kilometres from Earth, its disc appears tiny in a telescope. It sets at about 23:30 NZDT (New Zealand Daylight Time, 13 hours ahead of Universal Time) at the beginning of January, but by the end can only just be seen only as daylight vanishes. Jupiter becomes more prominent in the evening sky this month, rising in the east-nort...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201501/ - [Duration: 18:13, 8.4 MB]
The night sky for February 2015 (Audio)
... in the north as the night wears on, and it also contains the Leo Triplet, consisting of the interacting spiral galaxies M65, M66 and NGC 3628. At 35 million light-years away, these provide the opportunity to witness the gravitational dance of galaxies in the local Universe. All three show tidal disturbance, with NGC 3628 exhibiting a tidal tail 300,000 light-years long. The Leo Triplet appears near the bright star Denebola and about halfway between the stars Theta Leonis (Chertan) and Iota Leon...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201502/ - [Duration: 15:56, 7.3 MB]
The night sky for November 2014 (Audio)
... and setting around midnight NZDT (New Zealand Daylight Time, 13 hours ahead of Universal Time). It is moving away from the Earth and becoming smaller in our telescopes. Venus is just visible at the end of the month, setting 50 minutes after the Sun in the west-south-west. Jupiter rises around 03:00 NZDT at the beginning of November, and around 01:00 by the end. Its four largest moons are visible in binoculars, orbiting around the giant planet. HighlightsThe Leonid meteor shower peaks around the 1...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201411/ - [Duration: 19:47, 9.1 MB]
The night sky for March 2015 (Audio)
... the east before midnight NZDT (New Zealand Daylight Time, 13 hours ahead of Universal Time) at the beginning of March, and before 22:00 at the end. It sits just below the Claws of Scorpius the Scorpion, which is a winter constellation known as Te Matau a Maui to Maori. This represents a mythological hook that was used by Maui to catch a large fish that became the North Island of New Zealand. The red star Antares is higher and further south than Saturn, and represents the Scorpion's Heart - to M...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201503/ - [Duration: 14:26, 6.6 MB]
The night sky for December 2014 (Audio)
... best seen after midnight on the 14th. The constellation is low in the north, even at its highest point at around 03:00 NZDT, so only around half the visible meteors can be seen from New Zealand.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201412/ - [Duration: 16:39, 7.7 MB]
The night sky for February 2014 (Audio)
... the east around midnight, and is in the constellation of Virgo. Saturn rises in the east some time after Mars, and lies in Libra. Like Mars, it will be better placed for viewing in the evening sky during autumn and winter. Venus reappears in the morning sky this month, climbing higher as the month progresses. Mercury also becomes visible in the pre-dawn sky towards the end of the month.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201402/ - [Duration: 16:47, 7.7 MB]
The night sky for May 2014 (Audio)
... Universal Time) on the night of the 14th-15th. The event is visible to the unaided eye, but its progress will be spectacular when viewed through binoculars. Autumn is a prime time to observe the Aurora Australis, or Southern Lights. Caused by the interaction between the solar wind and the Earth's atmosphere, the phenomenon can sometimes be seen from southerly parts of New Zealand, Australia and South America, consisting of a red glow, or even moving sheets of red and green light, on the southern...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201405/ - [Duration: 17:28, 8.0 MB]
The night sky for October 2014 (Audio)
... of the Earth on the night of the 8th-9th, beginning some two hours after moonrise for observers in New Zealand. As the Moon moves through the Earth's shadow, a penumbral phase (beginning around 21:15 NZDT) is seen when the Earth blocks only part of the Sun's light, an umbral phase (around 22:14) follows when the centre of the Earth begins to cast its shadow, and totality (23:25 to 00:24) occurs when the Earth puts the Moon into full darkness. Even then, refraction of sunlight by the Earth's atm...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201410/ - [Duration: 18:23, 8.5 MB]
The night sky for August 2014 (Audio)
... the second brightest night-time star, Canopus, can be found in the constellation of Carina. To Maori in Aotearoa (New Zealand), this star is Atutahi or Ao-tahi, which means 'to stand alone'. Running back along the Milky Way towards Scorpius, we pass the False and Diamond Crosses before arriving at Crux, the Southern Cross. The smallest of the 88 official constellations, it has the appearance of a diamond shape of four bright stars along with a fifth fainter star. It is known to Maori as Te Pung...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201408/ - [Duration: 18:40, 8.6 MB]
The night sky for September 2014 (Audio)
... western horizon night by night, with Orion rising opposite them as they set. Between them are Capricornus, Aquarius and Pisces. Capricornus, often depicted as a cross between a goat and a fish, appears as an elongated triangle of stars, while a smaller triangle marks its head and horns. Its brightest star is Delta Capricorni or Deneb Algedi, and it changes significantly in brightness because it is an eclipsing binary, in which two stars partially block one another from our view as they orbit. Th...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201409/ - [Duration: 18:24, 8.5 MB]
The night sky for April 2014 (Audio)
... high in the sky by midnight and above Mars is a kite-shaped quartet of stars in the constellation of Corvus the Crow. Delta Corvi is a wide double star, but there are few other easily-observed objects in the vicinity. Nearby is Hydra the Water Snake, a long path of stars with a distinct group of five stars forming its head. The winter constellation of Scorpius rises in the east in the evening. Its brightest star, at magnitude +1, is the red supergiant Antares, known as the Rival of Mars because ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201404/ - [Duration: 17:11, 7.9 MB]
The night sky for August 2013 (Audio)
... the north. Over the night, the Southern Cross and the Pointer Stars turn about a point called the South Celestial Pole. This point would appear directly overhead if you were at the South Pole, and all the stars in the southern sky appear to circle around it as the Earth rotates. HighlightsA number of bright aurorae have recently been visible from the lower North Island and the South Island of New Zealand, including four observed in Wellington. These can now be forecast, and may contain over the ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201308/ - [Duration: 16:25, 7.6 MB]
The night sky for June 2014 (Audio)
... south on a moonless night, and are small galaxies not far outside our own. The planet Saturn is towards the north in the evening, in front of the stars of Libra, and Mars can be seen in a nearby part of the sky. Saturn is fading and shrinking as it recedes from us, but a small telescope can still pick out the disc of the planet, as well as its rings and its largest moon, Titan. Venus rises around 05:00 NZST (New Zealand Standard Time, 12 hours ahead of Universal Time) at the beginning of the mon...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201406/ - [Duration: 17:30, 8.1 MB]
The night sky for November 2013 (Audio)
... lowest point in the night sky. It is sometimes seen as the anchor of the Waka (canoe) of Tamarereti, who sailed across the sky placing Nga Whetu (the stars) across the body of Ranginui. The Diamond Cross and False Cross asterisms can also be seen low in the south, and the bottom star of the Diamond appears slightly fuzzy due to its being surrounded by a cluster of dimmer stars. Between these crosses lies the Carina Nebula, in which binoculars or a telescope can pick out swirls of luminosity and...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201311/ - [Duration: 17:53, 8.2 MB]
The night sky for October 2013 (Audio)
... to the horizon at midnight, but never sets over New Zealand. Travelling along the Milky Way from the pointers and Crux, we come to the Carina Nebula, a vast star-forming region which appears as a bright haze in the sky. Binoculars or a small telescope show dark lanes and star clusters among numerous stars. One of the most massive stars in the Galaxy, Eta Carinae, sits within this nebula. It is bright orange and has brightened over the last 20 years to become visible to naked eye. The two Magell...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201310/ - [Duration: 17:52, 8.2 MB]
The night sky for April 2013 (Audio)
... naked eye on a moonless night. Near to the Small Magellanic Cloud is the globular cluster 47 Tucanae, also visible by eye and containing over a million stars, mostly very old. A telescope shows the density of stars decreasing from its centre. Omega Centauri is another globular cluster apparent to the naked eye, near to the Pointer Stars. Alpha Centauri, the brighter and lower of the two Pointer Stars, is the nearest star to Earth that can be seen without a visual aid. It is actually a binary st...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201304/ - [Duration: 19:15, 8.8 MB]
The night sky for February 2013 (Audio)
... east from around midnight, and will become an evening object as it moves through the constellation of Libra during the southern hemisphere winter of 2013. At the same time, Saturn's rings will continue to tilt towards us, giving a better view of them. HighlightsComet PANSTARRS should, according to predictions, become visible in the morning sky in mid-to-late February.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201302/ - [Duration: 17:38, 8.1 MB]
The night sky for January 2014 (Audio)
... planetsMars rises after midnight NZDT (New Zealand Daylight Time, 13 hours ahead of Universal Time), near to the star Spica in Virgo. Saturn comes up around 02:00 NZDT.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201401/ - [Duration: 15:25, 7.1 MB]
The night sky for November 2012 (Audio)
... south-east after midnight. Nearby are the similarly shaped asterisms of the Diamond Cross and the False Cross. HighlightsAustralia, New Zealand and most of the Pacific islands see a solar eclipse on the 14th, which is total in parts of northern Australia. Cairns and Port Douglas experience just over 2 minutes of totality around 06:39 EST (Eastern Standard Time, 10 hours ahead of Universal Time), when the Sun's corona may be visible, as well as bright stars and planets. In New Zealand, the time o...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201211/ - [Duration: 19:21, 8.9 MB]
The night sky for May 2013 (Audio)
... visible throughout the night, appearing as a yellow star in the east during Twilight. Jupiter sets shortly after the Sun. Venus becomes visible later in the month, climbing higher as the month progresses. On the 28th, it is just over 1 degree below Jupiter in the sky. Mercury completes the planetary trio by appearing in the west at sunset, producing a conjunction that can be seen for about an hour after sunset late in the month. Binoculars may be required to see Mercury, 3 degrees to the right of ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201305/ - [Duration: 22:05, 10.1 MB]
The night sky for October 2012 (Audio)
... spotted, rising around midnight near the Great Square of Pegasus. A dark sky and a low northern horizon are needed to spot it from Wellington.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201210/ - [Duration: 17:40, 8.2 MB]
The night sky for June 2013 (Audio)
... northerly points and the night hours are at their longest. This date was celebrated in many cultures. In Aotearoa (New Zealand), the dawn rising of Matariki (the Pleiades Cluster) and Puanga (the star Rigel) coincide with the winter solstice, and mark the beginning of the new calendar year in the Maori system known as Te Maramataka.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201306/ - [Duration: 15:15, 7.0 MB]
The night sky for December 2013 (Audio)
... seen by eye on a dark night, and binoculars reveal many more. Crux is low in the south-east in the evening, with the dark Coalsack Nebula beside it. The darkness is caused by clouds of material which may one day collapse under gravity and form stars. The Large and Small Magellanic Clouds (LMC and SMC) appear as bright clouds in the southern hemisphere sky, and are satellite galaxies of the Milky Way. The LMC is near to the bright star Canopus in the south-east, and binoculars or a small telescop...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201312/ - [Duration: 18:24, 8.5 MB]
The night sky for March 2014 (Audio)
... south-east around midnight UT at the end of the 20thVenus is less than 3 degrees below a waning crescent Moon in the south-east one hour before dawn on the 27th.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201403/ - [Duration: 12:00, 5.5 MB]
The night sky for July 2014 (Audio)
... low in the west at nightfall, but larger surface features, such as Syrtis Major, may be spotted through a telescope. Venus rises in the east-north-east at morning twilight, and is 20 degrees above the horizon at sunrise. It decreases in angular size from 12 to 11" over the month as it moves away from the Sun, but the illumination of its gibbous disc increases from 85 to 92 percent over the same period, so its brightness drops only slightly, from magnitude -0. 9 to -0. 8. Venus is close to Aldebara...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201407/ - [Duration: 11:22, 5.2 MB]
The night sky for November 2011 (Audio)
... descends during the night but never sets. Taurus the Bull and Orion the Hunter stand to the north-east of Sirius, with the Hyades Cluster forming the Bull's head. The brightest star in this region is Aldebaran (the Follower), which lies between Earth and the Hyades, and is named for following the Pleiades Cluster across the sky. The Pleiades are part of the Bull's back, and are also known as the Seven Sisters in Greek mythology, as Matariki to the Māori and as Subaru to the Japanese. Near ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201111/ - [Duration: 19:25, 9.0 MB]
The night sky for March 2013 (Audio)
... 20th, when the day and night will be of almost equal length and the Sun will rise due east and set due west. The planet Mercury appears in the morning twilight this month, making its best appearance of the year and rising due east at dawn by the middle of the month. An orange-looking star to the naked eye, it resembles a tiny crescent Moon when viewed through a small telescope. Venus and Mars, meanwhile, are almost behind the Sun from our perspective and are therefore hidden.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201303/ - [Duration: 16:40, 7.7 MB]
The night sky for January 2013 (Audio)
... The second-brightest night-time star, Canopus, is almost overhead in the evening sky. The PlanetsSaturn rises well before dawn. It will move through Libra during 2013, and its rings will continue to become more visible as they open out to our line of sight.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201301/ - [Duration: 16:40, 7.7 MB]
The night sky for September 2013 (Audio)
... the second-brightest night-time star, moves along the southern horizon. The planets Venus and Saturn are in the west after sunset, and are joined by Mercury early in the month. The Moon sits between Saturn and Venus on the 9th, while Mercury is near to the bright star Spica on the 25th. Venus moves past Saturn during September, setting around 23:30 NZST (New Zealand Standard Time, 12 hours ahead of Universal Time) by month's end. Saturn moves closer to the Sun, setting earlier and becoming faint...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201309/ - [Duration: 16:46, 7.7 MB]
The night sky for July 2012 (Audio)
... southern hemisphere night sky during July 2012. New Zealand now contains a newly recognised dark sky area, the Mackenzie Starlight Reserve. From this area, which contains the Mount John Observatory, faint phenomena such as the zodiacal light can be observed. The brightest region of the Milky Way, between Scorpius and Sagittarius, is in the south-east after sunset. It is rich in bright star clusters and nebulae, even though much of it is obscured by interstellar dust. The Milky Way, as we see it i...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201207/ - [Duration: 15:41, 7.2 MB]
The night sky for December 2012 (Audio)
... southern hemisphere night sky during December 2012. The northern sky is dominated by the consellations of Orion, Taurus, Canis Major and Canis Minor. The summer part of the Milky Way passes through them and stretches along the southern horizon, with bright regions of combined starlight and dark patches where clouds of interstellar dust and gas obscure the stars beyond. Orion's Belt is in the north, consisting of three giant blue stars. Alnitak, the easternmost of the three, is a double star syst...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201212/ - [Duration: 18:50, 8.7 MB]
The night sky for March 2012 (Audio)
... equinox, when day and night are of almost identical length and the Sun moves from due east to due west during the day. In Mā legend, Te-Rā - the Sun - had a summer wife call Hine-raumati and a winter wife called Hine-takurua. From the time of the summer solstice he begins moving from Hine-raumati to Hine-takurua, and begins to journey back again from the point of the winter solstice.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201203/ - [Duration: 17:59, 8.3 MB]
The Night sky for August 2011 (Audio)
... the east around midnight and is high in the sky by sunrise. Binoculars reveal its four largest moons, and a small telescope shows the cloud bands on its surface. Mars follows a few hours behind Jupiter, rising red in the pre-dawn sky. HighlightsThe asteroid Vesta reaches opposition on the 5th, and, at magnitude 5. 6, is just visible to the naked eye in a dark sky. It passes close to Venus in the sky on the morning of the 10th, but both are too close to the Sun to be discerned. NASA's Dawn spacecra...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201108/ - [Duration: 17:06, 7.9 MB]
The night sky for June 2012 (Audio)
... eclipse occurs on the night of the 4th to 5th of June, with a maximum of 37 percent of the Moon's visible surface falling entirely under the Earth's shadow. The entire event is visible throughout New Zealand and most of Australia, with its maximum at 11:03pm NZST (New Zealand Standard Time, 12 hours ahead of Universal Time). The transit of Venus occurs during the day on the 6th, with the planet crossing the Sun over a period of around six hours. The sky will hopefully be clear, but the event wil...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201206/ - [Duration: 23:19, 10.7 MB]
The night sky for August 2012 (Audio)
... globular cluster in the night sky, which, at magnitude +5. 4, is just visible to the naked eye under a dark sky. Binoculars or a telescope may reveal curved lines and loops of stars. Nearer to the south celestial pole is Apus, the Bird of Paradise, which contains a double star of magnitude 4. 6 called Delta Apodis. It consists of a red and an orange star which may be connected but are not gravitationally bound, as they are at different distances from us. A telescope of 20 centimetres in diameter ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201208/ - [Duration: 18:11, 8.4 MB]
The night sky for September 2012 (Audio)
... in the north. By midnight NZST (New Zealand Standard Time, 12 hours ahead of Universal Time), Orion the Hunter and Canis Major, the larger of his dogs, are rising in the east as Scorpius and Sagittarius set in the west. The PlanetsSaturn and Mars are seen setting in the west not long after sunset. They have now separated after their conjunction in mid-August. Saturn is near the star Spica, in Virgo, while Mars has moved northwards into Libra. NASA's Curiosity rover is now exploring the surface o...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201209/ - [Duration: 17:02, 7.8 MB]
The night sky for January 2012 (Audio)
... visible throughout the night in the south. This comet may now have dropped in brightness as it moves away from the Sun, and might only be visible through telescopes.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201201/ - [Duration: 21:06, 9.7 MB]
The Night sky for February 2011 (Audio)
... constellation in the night sky. Virgo is marked by the bright star Spica and a faint, but easily seen, rectangle of stars. A much brighter object in Virgo is the planet Saturn, appearing as a yellow star that is similar in brightness to Spica. The Virgo Cluster is a group of up to 2000 galaxies whose center is about 54 million light-years away. It is the part of the larger Local supercluster, of which the galaxy is an outlying member. One of the brighter galaxies in this cluster is ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201102/ - [Duration: 18:06, 8.3 MB]
The night sky for April 2012 (Audio)
... in the north by midnight. With a telescope, Saturn's rings, its surface bands and its orangey largest moon, Titan, may be seen. Far from the Milky Way, Virgo is a good constellation in which to spot galaxies. 10 degrees west of Spica is the Sombrero Galaxy, visible through binoculars at magnitude +9 and with discernible features when using a medium-sized telescope. Above Spica is a small, kite-shaped constellation called Corvus, the Crow. In Greek mythology, the Crow, or Raven, was banished to t...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201204/ - [Duration: 17:17, 8.0 MB]
The night sky for July 2013 (Audio)
... during the long winter nights. At the apex of the Milky Way is Crux, or the Southern Cross, a diamond-shaped quartet of stars with a fifth, fainter star within. To MĔori in Aotearoa (New Zealand), it is Te Punga, the Anchor. To one side of this is a dark patch called the Coalsack Nebula, which is a cold and dark cloud of interstellar dust and gas that may one day form new stars. Running along the Milky Way to the east are the two bright stars Alpha and Beta Centauri, which point the way to ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201307/ - [Duration: 16:21, 7.5 MB]
The Night sky for May 2011 (Audio)
... 15th brightest in the night sky, which is a variable blue giant in a binary system 260 light-years away. The constellation of Capricorn, the Goat, rises later in the evening. Vesta, the brightest asteroid in the Solar System, currently resides there. Crux, the Southern Cross, is high overhead in the evening sky. The constellations of Carina, the Keel, and Vela, the Sails, are home to a number of bright stars, clusters and nebulae. Scorpius and Sagittarius rise in the east after sunset. The Plane...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201105/ - [Duration: 18:28, 8.5 MB]
The Night sky for November 2010 (Audio)
... catalogue in a one-night Messier marathon. In 1995, Sir Patrick Moore produced a similar compendium, the Caldwell Catalogue, containing objects from both hemispheres. M42, the Orion Nebula, is the outer edge of a molecular gas cloud about 1200 light-years from us and is visible as a haze above the three stars of Orions Belt. Stars are forming there, some of which can be seen to blow the edge of the cloud outwards. The nebula appears through binoculars as a bright knot with w...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201011/ - [Duration: 21:23, 9.9 MB]
The Night sky for March 2011 (Audio)
... which rises after midnight. For those up in the early morning, the planet Venus rises in the east around 04:00 NZDT (New Zealand Daylight Time) in New Zealand. On the 1st of March the crescent Moon is close to Venus. Mercury, Mars and Jupiter are too close to the Sun to be observed.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201103/ - [Duration: 19:19, 8.9 MB]
The night sky for May 2012 (Audio)
... north-east after midnight, and will be best seen around 03:00 NZST (New Zealand Standard Time, 12 hours ahead of Universal Time). The PlanetsMars is in the north in the evening, shining with a red glow. Saturn shines yellow in the same part of the sky as Mars, near to the bright star Spica. Venus becomes lost in the evening twilight, and next month will transit across the Sun.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201205/ - [Duration: 17:13, 7.9 MB]
The night sky for February 2012 (Audio)
... the eighth-brightest night-time star, in the constellation of Canis Minor, the Little Dog. The two dogs accompany Orion, the Hunter, while between them is Monoceros, the Unicorn. It contains a number of beautiful stars, including the triple system Beta Monocerotis, which can be separated in a telescope, and the double star Epsilon Monocerotis, with its yellow and blue components. The constellation also offers a number of star clusters as it is on the edge of the Milky Way. Between Sirius and Pr...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201202/ - [Duration: 21:43, 10.0 MB]
The Night sky for April 2011 (Audio)
... sixteenth-brightest star in the night sky. Antares is a red supergiant star about 600 light years distant; it has a diameter 800 times that of our Sun and is estimated to be 65,000 times brighter, with a mass up to 18 times greater. Although the core of this star is many times hotter than that of our star, the Sun, the expansion of its atmosphere makes the surface temperature much cooler and gives it a reddish hue. This colour gave rise to its name as the Rival of Mars. Antares is part of a bin...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201104/ - [Duration: 20:15, 9.3 MB]
The night sky for October 2011 (Audio)
... to east during the night but does not set, while the four stars forming the Great Square of Pegasus rise and move across the northern sky from east to west before setting again. The triple star Epsilon Pegasi is not in the Square but is the brightest star of the Pegasus constellation, and consists of a yellow supergiant at magnitude +2. 9 (visible with the naked eye), a blue companion at magnitude +8 (visible using binoculars) and a further companion at magnitude +11 (visible through a telescope...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201110/ - [Duration: 19:31, 9.0 MB]
The Night sky for July 2011 (Audio)
... suggest you check out the night sky podcast from the Sydney observatory instead. Hopefully we will be back to normal in August.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201107/ - [Duration: 11:58, 5.5 MB]
The Night sky for September 2011 (Audio)
... east just after midnight. Mars rises low in the north-east just before dawn, so it is not easily visible. Mercury rises just after Mars and so is even harder to spot before sunrise, while Venus is close to the Sun in the sky and so not visible.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201109/ - [Duration: 23:00, 10.6 MB]
The Night sky for September 2010 (Audio)
... by eye on a moonless night. Its scattered groups of stars can be seen through binoculars or a telescope, and three bright orange stars stand out within it. HighlightsSunspots are reappearing on the Sun as it emerges from solar minimum. A number of coronal mass ejections occurred during August, sending out charged particles into the Solar System. These can cause the Aurora Australis to be seen, although they must be bright to reach the northern latitudes of most land in the southern hemisphere. T...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201009/ - [Duration: 16:16, 7.6 MB]
The Night sky for June 2011 (Audio)
... sixteenth-brightest star in the night sky. It is about 800 times larger in diameter than our Sun, and intrinsically 10,000 times brighter. It has a fainter companion, but a medium-sized telescope is needed to distinguish it from the glare of Antares. Scorpius is seen as a fishing hook by Māori and many Polynesian cultures, and Antares is known to some Māori as Rehua, marking the eye of the hook. The Milky Way passes through Scorpius, so the constellation is host to a number of star cl...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201106/ - [Duration: 24:53, 11.5 MB]
The night sky for December 2011 (Audio)
... The ninth-brightest night-time star, a blue giant named Achernar, is high in the winding constellation of Eridanus, the River. It is not spherical, but is flattened by its high rotational speed. Hydrus, the Water Snake, contains three bright stars, each of around magnitude +3, in a triangle which crosses the constellation of Tucana and the Small Magellanic Cloud. Pi Hydri is a double star of magnitude +5. 5, consisting of unconnected red and yellow stars. Mensa, the Table, contains no stars brig...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201112/ - [Duration: 19:03, 8.8 MB]
The Night sky for August 2010 (Audio)
... east during the August nights. Its vanished South Equatorial Belt may return in the coming months, allowing an investigation into its transience.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201008/ - [Duration: 16:45, 7.7 MB]
The Night sky for October 2010 (Audio)
... change for the southern night sky. The winter constellations Scorpius and Saggitarius are descending in the west. The summer constellations Orion and Ursa Major are rising in the east. The PlanetsJupiter rises in the east. Uranus will be close to Jupiter and visible with a binoculars or a small telescope. HighlightsStar clusters are visible with binoculars or a telescope. Open clusters are found in the plane of the galaxy while globular clusters form a halo around the galaxy. Many clusters are vis...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201010/ - [Duration: 18:31, 8.5 MB]
The Night sky for July 2010 (Audio)
... approaches Saturn in the night sky. Jupiter is visible in the early morning, but rises at 10pm by the end of the month. HighlightsThe Milky Way stretches along the southern horizon before sunrise. From southern Australia's Blue Mountains, the Milky Way forms a spectacular ring around the horizon, revealing the structure of our galaxy.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201007/ - [Duration: 21:15, 9.8 MB]
The night sky for June 2009 (Audio)
... month to observe the night sky from the Southern Hemisphere. Towards the north you'll see Leo and Saturn above it. Towards the south is the most beautiful skyscape with the Milky Way arcing across the southern sky. Scorpius is above Sagittarius down in the south east. High up in the sky are Crux and Centaurus. Towards the south west is the beautiful region around Carina and Vela with the Eta Carina Nebula. Low in the south is the Small Magellanic Cloud and the Large Magellanic Cloud up and to t...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200906/ - [Duration: 17:43, 8.1 MB]
The night sky for April 2010 (Audio)
... horizon and a clear night you will have a chance to see Venus and Mercury just a few degrees apart about 30 minutes after sunset. Until April 7th both are moving away from the Sun so getting higher in the sky after sunset. From the 8th April, Mercury begins to move back toward the Sun and by the 21st of the month will be very difficult to spot in glare of the sunset. On the 15th April, Mercury is just below a very thin (one day old) crescent Moon. You will need a very clear low western horizon...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201004/ - [Duration: 10:40, 4.9 MB]
The night sky for August 2009 (Audio)
... worth looking out any night from the 10th to the 15th of August. This last day could well be the best as the Moon will be rising later and be less bright. Southern HemisphereLooking north at about 8pm in mid-August you have a lovely view of the Milky Way arcing high overhead. Below Sagittarius we have Aquila the Eagle and lower in the north east is Lyra. Down to the right of Aquila is Delphinus the dolphin. Looking towards the south there is the Milky Way dropping down to the south west. There a...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200908/ - [Duration: 23:32, 10.8 MB]
The night sky for December 2009 (Audio)
... the south-east by midnight and is due south and thus highest in the sky in the early hours of the morning. HighlightsThe early morning of December 14th will give us the chance, if clear, of observing the peak of the Geminid meteor shower. Happily, this year, the Moon is just two days before full moon and so its light will not intrude! You could see more that 60 meteors an hour in the early hours of the morning when Gemini is high in the sky! An observing location well away from twos or cities ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200912/ - [Duration: 17:23, 8.0 MB]
The night sky for May 2010 (Audio)
... Sun!!These are two good nights to observe an interesting feature on the Moon if you have a small telescope. Close to the limb (on the 25th May) is the bright crater Aristachus, some 41km in diameter. It is a young crater, some 450 million year old and shows some rays projecting from it. It lies close to the 36km diameter crater Herodotus which is close to the starting point for the very interesting "Schroter's Valley". In the early hours of the morning on the 28th of May the full Moon, seen low ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201005/ - [Duration: 16:05, 7.4 MB]
The night sky for March 2010 (Audio)
... +0. 6 for much of the night. It reaches opposition on March 21st. The angular size stays pretty constant at 19. 5 arcseconds and the extent of the rings is 44 arcseconds. The rings are close to edge on, at about 4 degrees and will drop to 3 degrees by the end of the month. Mercury passes behind the Sun on March 14th but reappears again in the twilight sky along with Venus in the last week of March. Might spot it with binoculars on March 22nd about 20 mins after sunset. Mars is fairly high in the so...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201003/ - [Duration: 13:58, 6.4 MB]
The night sky for June 2010 (Audio)
... observe. Over the next two nights the dark crater Plato and the young crater Copernicus will come into view. This is a very interesting region of the Moon!In the early hours of the morning this month, binoculars should help you spot a comet. During June, Comet McNaught passes low in the north-east through the constellations of, first, Andromeda,then Perseus and finally through Auriga. By the beginning of June it should have reached magnitude 8, so will be fairly obvious in binoculars. Probably ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201006/ - [Duration: 14:44, 6.8 MB]
The night sky for May 2009 (Audio)
... supercluster. On the night sky pages you'll find some of the nice things you can see in these constellations with binoculars or a small telescope. Jupiter is a morning object. It rises before the Sun but because the ecliptic is fairly low, it will only be around 20 or so degrees above the horizon before dawn. Even so, you'll have a chance to look at the Galilean moons. On May 17th Jupiter is just below the last quarter Moon in the pre-dawn sky. Mars is also low in the pre-dawn sky and is beginni...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200905/ - [Duration: 14:38, 6.7 MB]
The night sky for July 2009 (Audio)
... a particularly good night, a small telescope might be able to make out some of the features but we really have to wait a few months to see it at its best. Venus is now easily visible in the pre-dawn sky. It is about 20 degrees above the horizon as the Sun rises on the first of July, so will be easier to spot later in the month. It is at magnitude -4. 1. The highlights this month:On July 10th there is a very nice line up of Jupiter's Galilean satellites. At the same time, Jupiter is as close as it ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200907/ - [Duration: 13:37, 6.3 MB]
The night sky for March 2009 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky during March 2009. Northern HemisphereWe have a wonderful sky-scape centred on Orion and that has been discussed last month and the month before. To the lower left of Gemini, in the south east at about 10pm, is the constellation of Leo. The question mark shape of the head drops down to the star Regulus. To the lower left of Leo is the constellation of Virgo. There isn't a lot to see by eye but between the tail of Leo and Virgo is the realm of the galaxies. Moving...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200903/ - [Duration: 14:53, 6.8 MB]
The night sky for January 2010 (Audio)
... in the sky around midnight. It crossed from the constellation Cancer into Leo on the first of December and continued to move eastwards into Leo until December 20th when it begins its retrograde path westwards and returns into Cancer on January 9th. Venus is passing behind the Sun during January and is at Superior Conjunction (when it lies behind the Sun) on January 11th. We will have to wait until the middle of February before we will have a reasonable chance of spotting it in the evening sky af...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201001/ - [Duration: 15:52, 7.3 MB]
The night sky for April 2009 (Audio)
... 22nd. HighlightsOn the night of April 22nd/23rd is the Lyrid meteor shower peaking in the early morning. It isn't very spectacular although the peak of activity is just before new Moon. On April 26th Mercury is at its greatest elongation. It remains in the sky after sunset for about 2 hours. Also on 26th April, the Moon is going to be very close by and later in the evening it will occult some of the stars in the Pleiades Cluster. Saturn is below Leo at magnitude +0. 6Southern HemisphereVenus is rath...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200904/ - [Duration: 15:44, 7.2 MB]
The night sky for November 2009 (Audio)
... highlights!Southern HemisphereThe nights are getting shorter in the southern hemisphere. After sunset, in the north, you'll see the Square of Pegasus. Below that and to the right is Andromeda. Snaking around over to the north west is the Milky Way with Deneb in Cygnus and Aquila the Eagle above. High in the sky is the planet Jupiter with Neptune is down to the right. Towards the south, reasonably high, is the Small Magellanic Cloud with nearby globular cluster 47 Tucanae. Lower to the left is t...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200911/ - [Duration: 18:26, 8.5 MB]
The night sky for October 2009 (Audio)
... the hours after midnight. Southern HemisphereTowards the north you can see Cygnus low above the horizon with Lyra to the north west. Over in the north-eastern sky is Pegasus. The circlet of Pisces is well visible so a good chance of finding Uranus. Higher up towards the zenith is the wonderful constellation of Sagittarius. Looking south you've got the Milky Way stretching from the south over towards the south west. East of south you can see the Large Magellanic Cloud. Just to the lower right is ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200910/ - [Duration: 13:52, 6.4 MB]
The night sky for December 2008 (Audio)
... for Neptune on the night sky pages for December. In the mid early evenings you can see the Andromeda galaxy. To the left of the tiny constellation Triangulum is the Star Algol in Perseus. It is an eclipsing binary and every 2. 87 days its brightness drops by more than a magnitude and then rises again. In December you can watch this happen over a period of hours around 20:17 UT on the 7th and 17:06: UT on the 10th and 18:50 on the 30th. The early morning of December 14th may give us the chance, i...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200812/ - [Duration: 17:51, 8.2 MB]
The night sky for September 2009 (Audio)
... due south around midnight UT) last month and so will be seen in Capricornus towards the south in the late evening during September. It lies just over 2 degrees above the +2. 8 magnitude star Delta Capricorni - so will be easily spotted using binoculars at magnitude +7. 8 towards the top of the field of view if the star is placed in the lower centre of the field. Southern HemisphereLooking to the north you'll see many stars that are also seen in the northern hemisphere. Looking south you'll see th...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200909/ - [Duration: 17:32, 8.1 MB]
The night sky for January 2009 (Audio)
... above Uranus over the nights of January 21-23 so, if clear, will easily be seen at magnitude 5. 9 with a pair of binoculars. A small telescope will show a tiny turquoise disc. Do have a try - it will be one of the easiest times ever to spot Uranus!Southern HemisphereJust to the east of south at around 10pm you will see Alpha Centauri. Alpha Centauri is actually a triple system, one of which is Proxima Centauri - the nearest star to the Sun. Up to the left of Alpha Centauri you'll see Beta Centau...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200901/ - [Duration: 12:52, 5.9 MB]
The night sky for February 2010 (Audio)
... 2010. Northern HemisphereAs night falls the constellations of Pegasus and Andromeda are setting towards the west. High in the south is Orion. The three stars of its belt point down to Sirius in Canis Major. Up to the right they point to Taurus the Bull with the Hyades and Pleiades. High above Orion is Auriga with the bright star Capella. Up to the left of Orion are the Twins - Gemini. Over towards the eastern sky is Procyon in Canis Minor and then a very faint area - the constellation of Cancer ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201002/ - [Duration: 12:40, 5.8 MB]
The night sky for October 2008 (Audio)
... in the south west as night begins. Saturn is now visible in the pre-dawn sky and will get higher in elevation as the month progresses. Mercury passes between us and the Sun on the 6th October and reaches western elongation on the 22nd October. Mars is too close to the Sun to observe. Venus is very low in the west after sunset and is gradually moving, in angle, away from the Sun. Around 26th October Saturn, Mercury and the Moon will make a very nice skyscape in the hours before dawn. Vesta is th...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200810/ - [Duration: 14:59, 6.9 MB]
The news - November 2016 (Audio)
In the news this month: The Schiaparelli Lander, The Lyman Alpha Blob, and More galaxies than we thought.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201611/ - [Duration: 09:18, 4.3 MB]
The night sky for October 2007 (Audio)
... On October 11th, the night of new moon, Uranus, with a magnitude of 5. 8, lies just over 3 degrees up and to the left of the 4th magnitude star Lambda Aquarii. To the left of the tiny constellation Triangulum is the star Algol in Perseus. It is an eclipsing binary and every 2. 87 days its brightness drops by more than a magnitude and then rises again. In October you can watch this happen over a period of hours around 22:50 UT on the 21st and 19:38 UT on the 24th.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200710/ - [Duration: 10:39, 3.7 MB]
The night sky for June 2007 (Audio)
... in the sky around midnight is the constellation of Virgo. Between Virgo and the tail of Leo is the centre of our local supercluster of galaxies and this region of sky is named the "realm of the galaxies". We are now coming up to the constellations Libra, Ophiuchus, Scorpius and Sagittarius. The red star Antares, in Scorpius, is difficult to see from the UK as it is a bit too far south. The star fields around Scorpius and Sagittarius - towards the centre of our galaxy - are some of the richest i...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200706/ - [Duration: 11:37, 4.0 MB]
The night sky for March 2008 (Audio)
... binoculars, on a dark night, you will pick up a number of open clusters. Later in the evening we see Leo rising. To the lower left (east) of Leo is the constellation Virgo. The Virgo Super Cluster of galaxies lies beyond the constellation of Virgo. To the left of the star Denebola, towards Spica is a region we call "The Realm of the Galaxies". High above Leo is the constellation Ursa Major which contains the asterism known as The Plough (UK) or The Big Dipper (US). Venus and Mercury are togethe...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200803/ - [Duration: 08:58, 4.1 MB]
The night sky for July 2008 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during July 2008. At the beginning of July, Leo is setting in the west. Next to Leo is a rather blank area of sky named Virgo which actually contains a giant cluster of galaxies named the Virgo Cluster. Low in the sky are the constellations of Scorpius and Sagittarius and the further south you are the better view you'll have. Above those is the constellation of Ophiuchus; one of the constellations of the ecliptic. Above Ophiuchus is the c...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200807/ - [Duration: 10:21, 4.8 MB]
The night sky for June 2008 (Audio)
... Ursa Major. As the night goes on, the constellations of Cygnus, Lyra and Aquila the Eagle become visible. The brightest stars of these constellations make up the Summer Triangle. The Ring Nebula M57 is visible with a telescope in Lyra. Saturn is close to the star Regulus in Leo. Mars is moving up into Leo and by the end of the month will be only three quarters of a degree from Regulus. Venus passes behind the Sun on June 9th so we will have to wait until the end of July before we can see it aga...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200806/ - [Duration: 08:23, 3.9 MB]
The night sky for December 2007 (Audio)
... around due south at midnight. The Geminids meteor show should be visible around December 14th. Finally, one can still observe Uranus and Neptune in the hours after sunset.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200712/ - [Duration: 13:53, 6.4 MB]
The night sky for November 2007 (Audio)
... solar system in one night - Venus, Saturn and Mercury before dawn, Jupiter low in the south-west at 5:30 pm, Uranus in the south-east and Neptune in the south just after 6 pm with Mars rising in the east after 10 pm. We have an comet in the sky - visible to the unaided eye! A comet, 17P Holmes, which is around 240 million km from the Earth has undergone a major outburst and at the time of recording was at magnitude 3 appearing as a new star in the constellation Perseus. During November it will ...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200711/ - [Duration: 11:38, 4.0 MB]
The night sky for September 2008 (Audio)
... and not long after night fall you can see Cygnus, Lyra and Aquila high in the south-west forming the Summer Triangle. In the south-east is the winged horse Pegasus, Cassiopeia and Andromeda. Here we find the Andromeda Galaxy, M31, which appears as a faint fuzzy oval. M31 is the nearest large galaxy to us and the photons from it having been travelling for over two and a half million years. Jupiter is the planetary highlight of the month. On September 7th Jupiter begins to move eastwards and is a...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200809/ - [Duration: 11:29, 5.3 MB]
The night sky for January 2008 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during January 2008. The Orion Nebula can be found below the belt of Orion. Moving up to the right of the belt takes us to Taurus the Bull. The eye of the Bull - Aldebaran - is a red giant star half way between us and the Hyades open cluster. Further up to the right is the lovely Pleiades cluster. Up to the left of Taurus the Bull is Auriga with Capella at the head. This is part of the Milky Way and there are several very nice open cluste...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200801/ - [Duration: 13:01, 6.0 MB]
The night sky for September 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during September 2007. In the south, as the Sun sets, is a very nice region of the sky containing the stars Deneb, Vega and Altair: the Summer Triangle. About a third of the way from Altair to Vega is an "upside down coathanger" - Brocchi's Cluster - a nice asterism of stars. Albireo - the head of Cygnus the Swan - is a lovely double star which can be seen in a small telescope. Between Deneb and Altair is the constellation of Delphinus th...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200709/ - [Duration: 11:00, 3.8 MB]
The night sky for July 2007 (Audio)
... now rising around midnight. The disc is around 6. 3 arcseconds across and you might just see the poles with a telescope. Venus shines brightly in the western sky after sunset although you will start to need a good clear western horizon to see it now. The Moon can be fun to observe and is probably best to observe at first quarter around July 22nd. Jupiter is seen in the south at about 10pm and is up and to the left of Antares in Scorpius. Sadly, Jupiter is not very high in the sky for observers a...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200707/ - [Duration: 08:02, 2.8 MB]
The night sky for March 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during March 2007. In the early evening in the southern sky we can see Orion, Taurus and the Pleiades cluster. To the lower left of Orion is Sirius - the brightest star in the sky. To the upper left of Orion is Gemini. In the late evening we can see the constellation of Leo. Between Leo and Gemini, in a darker area, is the constellation Cancer. With binoculars you can see the Beehive cluster there. High above Leo is the constellation Ursa...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200703/ - [Duration: 08:05, 2.8 MB]
The night sky for September 2006 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during September 2006. In the late evening sky we can see Cygnus, Lyra and Aquila and the stars of the summer triangle. Ian explains a good way to find M31 - the Andromeda Galaxy - using the constellations of Andromeda or Cassiopeia. The most visible planet in the evening sky this month is Jupiter which can be found low in the south-west after sunset. The highlights of the month include Uranus (which you can see with binoculars or a small...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200609/ - [Duration: 06:51, 2.4 MB]
The night sky for April 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during April 2007. The constellation of Orion is now low in the south west after sunset. Above and to the left of Orion is the constellation Gemini and to the left and south of that is Leo the lion. Between Gemini and Leo, on the boundary of Leo and Cancer is the planet Saturn. Looking to the right of Saturn you can see the Beehive cluster with binoculars. Low to the left of Leo is Virgo and its brightest star Spica. Between Leo and Spica...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200704/ - [Duration: 09:42, 3.3 MB]
The night sky for May 2008 (Audio)
... rises just before midnight. Mars is in the constellation of Gemini. On May 5th it moves into the constellation of Cancer and will form a line with the stars Castor and Pollux. Venus is very low above the horizon so is almost impossible to observe due to the glare of the Sun. Ian also answers a listener question about good beginner telescopes that can be used to take astronomical photographs.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200805/ - [Duration: 13:00, 6.0 MB]
The night sky for December (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during December 2006. Around the middle of December we have the shortest day, so the evenings are better for observing and you can still see Vega and the rest of the summer triangle. In the south after sunset in Pegasus - the winged horse - and Andromeda where you can see the Andromeda Galaxy. Soon after sunset, rising in the north-east, are the Pleiades and then the Hyades. Rising later is the brightest star in the northern hemisphere, S...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200612/ - [Duration: 10:12, 3.5 MB]
The night sky for November (Audio)
... sisters. Later on in the night the Hyades cluster will appear. Nearly all the planets, except Saturn, are passing by the Sun this month so will not be easily visible. Saturn's rings are currently at an angle of about 15 degrees to our line-of-sight and over the next few years they will be closing so have a look at them now. On November 8/9th is the last transit of Mercury that will be seen until around 2016. It can be seen (taking proper precautions not to look directly at the Sun) from New Ze...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200611/ - [Duration: 10:52, 3.7 MB]
The night sky for May 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during May 2007. From around the middle of May, in northern England, it doesn't get truely dark for about six weeks. As the Sun sets, in the south west we see the constellation of Gemini and high in the south is Leo. Between them is the constellation Cancer and with binoculars you may see a very nice star cluster called the Beehive Cluster. On the boundary between Leo and Cancer is Saturn. Between the bright star Spica - in the constellat...
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200705/ - [Duration: 09:43, 3.4 MB]
The night sky for August 2007 (Audio)
... rising at around midnight but is reasonably bright and gets its closest to the Sun on August 19th. Highlights include the Perseid meteor shower and asteroid Vesta. The peak of the Perseids is 11-13th August which coincides with the new Moon on August 12th so viewing should be good. Vesta will be close to Jupiter, so should be easier to find towards the end of the month.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200708/ - [Duration: 08:24, 2.9 MB]
The night sky for January 2007 (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during January 2007. In the south, in the late evening, is the constellation of Orion the hunter. Orion is holding a sheild against the onslaught of Taurus. The Hyades cluster makes up the face of Taurus. To the right of the Hyades is the Pleiades or Seven Sisters. Above Taurus is Auriga containing the bright yellow star Capella and the open clusters M36, M37 and M38. Up to the left of Orion are Castor and Pollux - the heads of the twins....
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200701/ - [Duration: 11:14, 3.9 MB]
The night sky for August (Audio)
... what we can see in the night sky from northern latitudes during August 2006. This month we see the constellations of Cygnus, Lyra and Aquila which give us the summer triangle. Jupiter can be seen in the evening and Venus before dawn in the north-east. Other highlights this month include a conjunction of Venus and Mercury (9-12th August), the Perseid meteor shower (although it will be affected by the Moon) and on August 21st/22nd we get Mercury, Venus and Saturn all lined up.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200608/ - [Duration: 06:56, 2.4 MB]
The news - October 2015 (Audio)
In the news this month: a new state of affairs on Mars, gravitational waves revisited and Indian astronomy takes flight
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201510/ - [Duration: 08:33, 3.9 MB]
The news - August 2012 (Audio)
In the news this month: planetary orbital alignments, spiral galaxies at high redshift and protogalactic clouds.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201208/ - [Duration: 07:59, 3.7 MB]
The news - September 2011 (Audio)
In the news this month: supernova spotted in the Pinwheel galaxy, the discovery of antimatter in the Earth's Van Allen belts and a planet darker than coal.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/201109/ - [Duration: 09:13, 4.3 MB]
The news - February 2007 (Audio)
In the news this month: the first triple quasar system is discovered; Hubble maps dark matter in 3D; new dwarf galaxies found in the local group; lakes found on Titan; Comet McNaught provides great views; the Hubble Space Telescope suffers problems and the Sky At Night reaches 50.
http://www.jodcast.net/archive/200702/ - [Duration: 08:24, 2.9 MB]