Category Archives: Stars 2009

Monthly blogs on the stars to promote astronomy in St Catherine, Sinai

The ghoul

According to Arabic legend a ghoul is an evil demon that lurks in graveyards and feeds off the dead, a chilling thing to see, eyeing you from the shadows! Yet Arabic astronomers named a star after it because it winks … Continue reading

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Sun Spots

Over a repeating cycle of 11 years, the sun develops a chronic case of recurring acne, its face becoming pockmarked with ugly black spots and blemishes which eventually fade away only to reappear again in the following cycle. These “sun … Continue reading

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Red Dwarfs

Red Dwarfs may need orbiting satellite telescopes to be viewed, but they are more like our own sun than the colossal stars that make up most of the visible stars. Of the 375 stars that have been identified by telescopes to … Continue reading

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Solar Eclipse 2009

On Wednesday, 2009 July 22, a total eclipse of the Sun was visible from within a narrow corridor that traversed half of Earth. The maximum duration of totality was 6 min 39 seconds, something that won’t be repeated again this century – … Continue reading

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Scorpio and Gould’s Belt

Scorpio belongs to a massive belt of stars forming a halo 2000 light years across, known as Gould’s belt, the most prominent feature in our region of the Milky Way. On one side lies Scorpio, on the other Orion, with … Continue reading

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Extra solar planets

  A minor star, τ Bootis, in the constellation of Bootes, has emerged from relative obscurity to instant celebrity by having a planet detected in orbit around it. Since 1995, over 300 stars have been identified with accompanying planets. Planets … Continue reading

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Moon rock

Many still believe the moon landing in 1969 was a hoax, though the colossal conspiracy required beggars belief. And what about the 385 kilograms of moon rock stored in laboratories around the world? Such cynicism devalues a stunning achievement. Not … Continue reading

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Moons of Saturn

As shifting positions between Earth and Saturn bring our planet in line with the plane of Saturn’s ring, they are seen edge on, which happened in 2009. This is the best time to view the moons when they appear strung out … Continue reading

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