A thoroughly sporadic column from astronomer Mike Brown on space and science, planets and dwarf planets, the sun, the moon, the stars, and the joys and frustrations of search, discovery, and life. With a family in tow. Or towing. Or perhaps in mutual orbit.



Favorite posts
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  • Di/ astronomical discoveries


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  •  /four essays on the sizes of Eris and Pluto and their implications for planethood

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  • Na/series on how these objects get their crazy names, with examples.

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  • Sk/notice, if you look up
Yelping at saints (why is the full moon so bright?)
  • It's only a sliver moon (one of the most beautiful sights in the sky)
  • Look up! ( the odd wonders of Grand Central Station)
  • Heavens above! (what else is up there)
  • We'll always have Regulus (constellations from Paris)
  • Part 1: The discovery of Sedna
  • Part 2: What it means
  • Planetary placemats (understand the solar system in one picture)
  •  What is a dwarf planet? (it's like a real planet, only dwarfier)
  • What's in a name? (who should get to be called a planet?)
  • Ground rules for debating the definition of "planet" (if you learn these logical arguments you are ahead of 99% of the crowd, regardless of which side you are on)
  • Titan, my hobby, for when I need a break from the Kuiper belt
  • Lake effect clouds on Titan (and what happens when Science rejects your paper) 
  • The long road to a Titan storm (rain in the equatorial Titanian deserts)
  •  Fog! Titan! Titan fog! (discovery of fog on Titan and how to write a scientific paper)
  • My family
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