Dave Eicher, editor of Astronomy magazine and science popularizer, brings you thoughts about astronomy, cosmology, nature, the hobby of astronomy, the sometimes disturbingly pseudoscientific culture we live in, and more.
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Starmus set to commence with unprecedented, all-star lineup

Posted 4 days ago by David Eicher
On Saturday my wife Lynda and I will fly to Chicago, then to London, and then to Tenerife, in preparation for the third Starmus Festival in the Canary Islands. This unique science festival celebrates stars and music (thus, Starmus), and is the brainchild of good friend Garik Israelian, an astronomer at the Institute for Astronomy in Tenerife. This year’s Starmus Festival (June 27–July 2, 2016) will pay tribute to the great Stephen Hawking, who is already on the island. The career tri...
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Watch Starmus LIVE via streaming online!

Posted 5 days ago by David Eicher
Can’t come to Starmus? Watch it LIVE via streaming online!!Join us as history happens in the Canary Islands! You can stream Starmus on your computer or phone from June 27 through July 2, 2016, with an incredible, all-star lineup:• All speaker presentations in real time• Select performances in the Sonic Universe Concert! • The Stephen Hawking Award presentations• The GTC Round Table at the world’s largest telescope• And much more! • All the excitemen...
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Astronomy magazine Associate Editor job opening

Posted 6 days ago by David Eicher
Our loss could be your gain. Our wonderful Associate Editor Korey Haynes has given her notice at Astronomy magazine, as her better half (husband) has accepted a job in the Twin Cities. So we regretfully will let her go, and will lose Korey as a staff member in mid July. (She will continue as an active contributor to the magazine, though — so you will continue to see her byline.)This means the magazine is seeking an associate editor right away. Please see the press release below, and g...
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Hundreds of events worldwide scheduled for Asteroid Day 2016

Posted 6 days ago by David Eicher
SAN FRANCISCO, CA USA (June 20, 2016) – What began as a passion of a handful of individuals, a musician, filmmaker, technologist, scientist and astronaut, has become a global movement by thousands to increase awareness and education about asteroids. Supported by 22 global partners, scores of international agencies, 72 space travelers from 12 nations, leaders in business and finance, parents and youth, Asteroid Day 2016 will include hundreds of events on and around June 30, 2016. Profe...
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Cool new book: Andrew Fazekas’ Star Trek: The Official Guide to Our Universe

Posted 6 days ago by David Eicher
My friend Andrew Fazekas has just published a really wonderful new book that I know you will enjoy. Andrew’s Star Trek: The Official Guide to Our Universe, just out, blends two things most all of us love — the cosmos and Star Trek! How can you lose? The book was published by National Geographic Books (237 pp., hardcover, Washington, 2016, $25, ISBN 978–1–4262–1652–7). The book is a cool book — and I will describe it in a moment. But here’...
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Guest blog: Ben Palmer on outreach astronomy

Posted 6 days ago by David Eicher
You may recall a young friend of Astronomy magazine, Ben Palmer of Queensbury, New York, who won Astronomy’s 2011 Youth Essay Contest. Ben has subsequently become an active part of the Astronomy Foundation. He is a great young man and full of energy and enthusiasm for sharing the excitement of astronomy. I’d like to share his blog here . . . From Sky to Screen: Outreach Astronomy in the Digital AgeBy Benjamin Palmer Virtual. Simulated. Instantaneous. The consummate keywords of the 21...
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Stephen Hawking medal recognizes Jim Al-Khalili, Hans Zimmer and the documentary film Particle Fever to be a model for disclosure of science in their respective areas

Posted 7 days ago by David Eicher
•    2016 is the first edition of these awards which recognizes the contribution to science communication across different media, whether in writing, broadcasting, music, film, or fine art•    In the Science category, the medal has been awarded to Jim Al-Khalili, physicist, writer and broadcaster, for his treatment of complex physics concepts through science documentaries•    The medal of Arts has been awarded to Hans Zimmer, film and t...
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Stephen Hawking medal for science communication

Posted 7 days ago by David Eicher
STEPHEN HAWKING STATEMENTIn collaboration with the Starmus festival here in Tenerife, I am pleased to announce the first recipients of the Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication. In this special inaugural year of the awards, I have been invited to personally select the awardees. The winners have made outstanding contributions in the articulation and portrayal of science to the public, within the three categories of science, art, and film. The winners are.Professor Jim Al-Khalili, in the...
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Dr. John H. Eicher, 1921–2016

Posted 18 days ago by David Eicher
The world has lost a great and a good man with the passing on Tuesday, June 7, of Dr. John H. Eicher, organic chemist, Manhattan Project scientist, mineralogist, historian, philosopher of science, and promoter of sharing the joy of knowledge with his fellow human beings. Eicher was the father of Astronomy Editor David Eicher and served as the original publisher of Deep Sky Monthly magazine, started by his son as a high school project. That magazine grew into Deep Sky magazine, and John Eicher wa...
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Starmus seats available — last chance for superstar extravaganza!

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
The greatest science festival of them all is rapidly approaching: Starmus 3, to be held June 27–July 2, 2016. Never before has an all-star lineup like this existed!! You will see and meet: Stephen Hawking, Roger Penrose, Richard Dawkins, Jill Tarter, Brian May, Rick Wakeman, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Sarah Brightman, Alexei Leonov, Hans Zimmer, Adam Riess, May-Britt Moser, Kip Thorne, Carol Greider, Chris Hadfield, Brian Greene, Brian Cox, Brian Eno, Martin Rees, Rusty Schweickart, and many oth...
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Starmus seats still available — last chance for superstar extravaganza!

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
The greatest science festival of them all is rapidly approaching: Starmus 3, to be held June 27–July 2, 2016. Never before has an all-star lineup like this existed!! You will see and meet: Stephen Hawking, Roger Penrose, Richard Dawkins, Jill Tarter, Brian May, Rick Wakeman, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Sarah Brightman, Alexei Leonov, Hans Zimmer, Adam Riess, May-Britt Moser, Kip Thorne, Carol Greider, Chris Hadfield, Brian Greene, Brian Cox, Brian Eno, Martin Rees, Rusty Schweickart, and many oth...
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Watch Dave Eicher’s Harvard talk online

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
Many thanks to all of you who came to my talk last week at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. It was a wonderful experience, with great crowd participation and terrific questions. Thanks also to the Harvard Coop Bookstore for bringing along copies of The New Cosmos — I think I signed nearly 50 of them. Altogether, we had 250 people in Phillips Auditorium and in the two overflow rooms, and I have rarely seen such enthusiasm. What a great night. I spoke on my new book and the m...
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Starmus 3 full schedule announced!

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
The third Starmus Festival is fast approaching, just six weeks away now. It will take place again in the Canary Islands, on Tenerife and La Palma, and will bring together a spectacular assortment of scientists, musicians, and artists to celebrate the cosmos. The tribute this year will honor the magnificent career of Stephen Hawking. I will be there and will look forward to seeing many of you. Please see the following for the program announcement . . . STARMUS III PRESENTS:  BEYOND THE HORIZ...
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Jordan Rice to become Astronomy’s first student science writer

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
This summer the Astronomy staff will be aided by our first ever student fellow, Jordan Rice of Lee’s Summit, Missouri. Jordan is a junior at Carthage College in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where she is studying astrophysics and math. The program enabling Jordan to join the Astronomy staff for 10 weeks this summer resulted from the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium, based at Carthage College. Jordan is a teaching assistant at Carthage and president of the Society of Physics Students. She is also tea...
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AstroCATS meeting set for London, Ontario

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
If you’re in the area of Toronto next week, you’ll definitely want to attend the AstroCATS astronomy meeting. This meeting has grown over the past several years to become a significant telescope show, much like the Northeast Astronomy Forum in New York. (The CATS part of the name stands for Canadian Astronomy Telescope Show.) The meeting will be held May 21–22, 2016, at Fanshawe College, in London, Ontario, in conjunction with the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada General As...
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Dave Eicher to speak next week at Harvard

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
Join David Eicher for a lecture, book signing, and celebration of the stars at Harvard University’s Phillips Auditorium, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Thurs., May 19, 2016, 7:30 p.m. Monthly Observatory Night Thursday, May 19, 20167:30 p.m.: Author’s Night. The New Cosmos: Answering Astronomy’s Big QuestionsDavid Eicher, Astronomy magazineOver the past decade, astronomers have answered — or are closing in on the answers to &md...
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Follow Max Alexander in Chicxulub

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
You can follow Asteroid Day’s Max Alexander as he travels around the Yucatán Peninsula this week during a particularly exciting time. Scientists are drilling into the Chicxulub Crater, some 200 kilometers wide, to gain information about its nature in the most detailed way yet. Some 66 million years ago, a 10km asteroid plunged into the Yucatán, forming the crater, and causing a prolonged nuclear winter that killed much of life on Earth, including the dinosaurs. Discover magaz...
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Starmus in the New York Times!

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
Please read this story just out a few days ago in the New York Times, written by Nina Burleigh. It describes the great evolution of the Canary Islands into a stargazer’s paradise, and specially talks about our friend Garik Israelian and the Starmus Festival. What a wonderful story! And I do hope that you will be coming to the Starmus Festival, June 27–July 2, 2016, in Tenerife. It will be a magnificent time.Follow Dave Eicher on Twitter, and please check out his Author Page on Facebo...
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RIP Harry Kroto, 1939 - 2016

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
The world of science lost a great man this weekend with the death of Sir Harold Kroto, FRS, an exceptional professor of chemistry and an amazing thinker. Harry was a Nobel Prize laureate for his 1985 co-discovery of carbon-60, which he named buckminsterfullerene, after the molecule’s shape, which resembled a geodesic dome. You may know the molecules as a buckyball. Laboratory research leading to the discovery that such molecules could form spontaneously from carbon vapor followed simulatio...
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Uwingu says - Make an impact on mom with an Uwingu Mother's Day gift!

Posted one month ago by David Eicher
We have a new campaign to honor moms for Mother’s Day 2016 with place names on its Mars map or subscriptions to its daily emailed space image service.Today through Mother’s Day on May 8th, Uwingu is offering decorative Mother’s Day certificates for anyone choosing to honor a mom with a named crater on our Mars map. Two certificate options are available: an electronic downloadable version and a beautifully printed and framed keepsake version. Uwingu’s Mars Map will be...
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Win a copy of THE NEW COSMOS!

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
Here’s your chance to pick up an autographed copy of my latest book, The New Cosmos: Answering Astronomy’s Big Questions. You can visit (and like!) my official Facebook page between April 18 and May 2, 2016, for your chance to win! Follow Dave Eicher on Twitter, and please check out his Author Page on Facebook....
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Stephen Hawking will be honored at Starmus by the Oscar-winning composer Hans Zimmer, global recording artist Sarah Brightman, and Anathema

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
  Starmus will have its musical agenda through shows like the Sonic Universe concert, in which Hans Zimmer, Sarah Brightman, and Anathema will offer exclusive performances.   From June 27 to July 2, Tenerife will become the meeting place for the brightest minds in the world in the fields of science and music. Madrid, April 26, 2016. Make science accessible and enjoy exclusive artistic performances inspired by the universe is the spirit of Starmus Festival. And in its third editio...
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Win a signed copy of THE NEW COSMOS!

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
Here’s your chance to pick up an autographed copy of my latest book, The New Cosmos: Answering Astronomy’s Big Questions. You can visit (and like!) my official Facebook page between April 18 and May 2, 2016, for your chance to win! Follow Dave Eicher on Twitter, and please check out his Author Page on Facebook....
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Astronomy online story an award finalist

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
Congratulations to Eric Betz, Chuck Braasch, Marie Kieckbusch, and the entire Astronomy magazine team that assembled our online feature story on the movie The Martian. This interactive digital story has been named a finalist in the Magazine Publishers Association Imagination Awards 2016, which recognize projects that capture the essence of a magazine brand, demonstrating innovative thinking and imaginative tactics. Eric has since moved over to become an associate editor of Discover magazine, acr...
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Is It Just Me, Or Are Asteroids More Dangerous Than They Used to Be?

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
Every week we read about dangerous asteroids that whiz past our planet. How dangerous are the actual threats? Courtesy of the team at Asteroid Day, please enjoy the blog, which lays out a straight and sober reality. Thanks to Eric Christensen, director of the Catalina Sky Survey in Tucson, for writing such a nice piece. And for all on Asteroid Day, see Asteroidday.org.Follow Dave Eicher on Twitter, and please check out his Author Page on Facebook....
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Starmus Festival to address global concerns

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
I hope many of you will attend the Starmus Festival in Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain, June 27–July 2, 2016. I have written extensively about the festival in the April issue of Astronomy. In addition to the previous Starmus plans, Garik Israelian has announced a series of high-level talks on global issues — cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, global warming, threat from asteroids, and status of the global economy. For more on Starmus, see starmus.com. Press release follows ...
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Northeast Astronomy Forum 2016

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
The largest telescope show in the United States, the Northeast Astronomy Forum celebrated its 25th anniversary this year with a bang. The show took place at Rockland Community College in Suffern, New York, hosted by the Rockland Astronomy Club as always, and capably managed by Ed Siemenn and his talented staff. One of the show’s driving forces, Al Nagler of Tele Vue Optics, was present and all smiles as usual, with a huge crowd surrounding the Tele Vue booth. David and Sandy Nagler also bu...
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Eicher book signing at Northeast Astronomy Forum

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
This weekend I’ll be pleased to see many of you at the Northeast Astronomy Forum in Suffern, New York. The event will be held Saturday and Sunday at Rockland Community College and constitutes the largest gathering of astronomy enthusiasts in the country, built around a telescope show. More than 100 telescope manufacturers and dealers will be set up to show their wares. Cambridge University Press has set up a book signing for my new title The New Cosmos, at the Cambridge booth, at 11:30 AM ...
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Read Mark Boslough’s blog on the Jupiter impact

Posted 2 months ago by David Eicher
As many of you know, a small solar system body impacted Jupiter once again, this time on March 17, 2016, St. Patrick’s Day. Austrian amateur astronomer Gerrit Kernbauer was the first to observe the impact scar. I encourage you to read Mark Boslough’s blog on the Asteroid Day website.Boslough is chair of the Asteroid Day Expert Panel, and a physicist and authority on impacts at Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico. You can also read an interview with the discoverer.Follow Dave E...
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Asteroid Day’s Don Yeomans: Will asteroid 2013 TX68 strike Earth?

Posted 3 months ago by David Eicher
Please read the expert panel story from JPL’s Don Yeomans, one of Earth’s greatest authorities on asteroid science. Don gives you the straight story on asteroid 2013 TX68, which originally showed a remote possibility of striking Earth, and the confusion and misinformation that has followed. There’s so much poor quality stuff out in social media now that it’s important to get the real story from those who know. This blog will give it to you! Follow Dave Eicher on Twitter, ...

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