Moon to Eclipse Aldebaran
Astronomers are preparing for April 18th, when the moon will pass in front of Aldebaran, one of the brightest stars in the sky. The Midwestern US will be late evening for the occultation, making it dark enough to see without a telescope.
Spiral Star Found
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Probably caused by the gravitational interaction of two stars orbiting closely, astronomers have found a spiral-shaped star called Wolf-Rayet 104. The star burns much hotter than average and ejects a spiral stream of superheated dust around it.
FUSE Satellite Readied for Launch
The Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) has been transferred to NASA’s Hanger AE at Cape Canaveral for prelaunch preparations. Expected to launch on May 20th, the satellite will help answer questions about the origin of the universe by examining the presence of hydrogen and deuterium.
FUSE Home Page
Final Titan Launch
Lockheed Martin is preparing to launch its final Titan IV rocket from Cape Canaveral on April 9th. The rocket will carry an Air Force early warning satellite into space, after which the launch facility will be deactivated, and prepared for Lockheed’s newer Atlas V rocket.