Science

Crescent Moon

Posted by on September 21, 2017 at 11:24 am

With clear skies over the next 5-6 days, we will start seeing the waxing crescent moon with increasing visibility every night, low in the southwest sky: The full harvest moon this year is on October 5th, Thursday night.

Moisture From Irma

Posted by on September 11, 2017 at 4:55 pm

While the deep, rain-producing moisture with now Tropical Storm Irma is confined to the Tennessee Valley and southeast states, some of the moisture very high aloft is getting spun off as far north as Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, and Arkansas. Because there is plenty of moisture available aloft where most of the commercial jet traffic […]

Eclipse Effects

Posted by on August 22, 2017 at 1:06 pm

While the light did look a little “odd” at maximum, the effect on backyard thermometers was certainly definitive. Look at this temperature trace thanks to Doug Miller in Holmes County via Twitter (used by permission). NASA’s photo of the eclipse was photobombed by the International Space Station yesterday! If you have an interesting photo, upload […]

Life Of A Sunspot

Posted by on August 13, 2017 at 7:00 am

Here’s a really neat video depicting the life of a sunspot crossing the surface of the sun.

Giant “Sprites”

Posted by on July 26, 2017 at 8:29 pm

They are even bigger and brighter than the “sprites” discovered shooting far into the ionosphere from very large, electrically active thunderstorms. They are called “jets,” and they are so bright, they can easily be seen by the naked eye. Check out this image snapped from the summit of Mauna Kea in Hawaii. You can read […]

Small Full Moon

Posted by on May 9, 2017 at 8:48 am

The near full moon (full on Wednesday) is certainly beautiful, but did you notice how “small” it is? That’s because the moon is cycling near its apogee (farthest distance from the Earth at roughly 250,000 miles). The next lunar perigee is May 25 (closest distance to Earth at roughly 222,000 miles). Unfortunately, we won’t see […]

Orion Bidding Goodbye

Posted by on April 17, 2017 at 1:24 pm

With clear skies tonight, stargazing fans ought to take time to wave goodbye to a winter favorite, the constellation of Orion. It is low in the western sky after sunset. By mid-May, it will be too close to the setting sun to be visible and won’t be visible again until we see it emerge in […]

First Sign

Posted by on March 23, 2017 at 12:36 pm

Usually, the first sign of a front moving in is an increase in high cirrus clouds (and subsequently, commercial jet condensation trails). Why? As the air becomes more saturated with moisture above 5 miles high, that moisture now has condensation nuclei on which to condense. That’s why we call them “contrails” (short for condensation trails). […]

Venus Transitioning

Posted by on March 22, 2017 at 12:15 pm

So where is that beautiful, bright “evening star” (Venus) we’ve been seeing in the last few months? I looked for it while Sally and I were in Lynchburg, Virginia over the weekend. I was surprised that I could not find it. Was it that low in the sky and in the process of transitioning back […]

Young Meteorologist

Posted by on February 13, 2017 at 1:15 pm

On Sunday, I met Kyle Williams, a very young meteorologist-to-be. It so so exciting to see so much passion and wonder about weather in someone so young. He reminds me of what I must have been like at his age. There is no doubt in my mind where I will find Kyle in 10-15 years. […]

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