Declassified: The True Tale of Project Orion.
Artist's conception of an Orion vessel about to depart from Mars orbit. (Credit: NASA). Ever wondered if man will ever head to the stars? Certainly, the magnitude… [more]
Astro-Challenge: Daytime Planet Spotting!
A daytime Venus post-occultation in 2007! (Photo by Author). Here’s a fine neighborhood experiment to try. Next time the Moon is around 1st or Last Quarter, show… [more]
Astro-Event: What’s in a Name? Black & Blue Moons through 2020.
The August 2011 Full Moon rising as seen from Astroguyz HQ. (Photo by Author). (Note: This week’s lunar-related event is a fitting tribute to the life of astronaut… [more]
30.10.2012: A Weekend of Apocalyptic Fun at the NecronomiCon!
How many Baktuns in a Pectun again? (Credit: Stone Hill.org). The “busy ‘Con season” for Astroguyz has arrived. Sure, it may have came and went with only one event,… [more]
Week 4-The Quest for Dark Skies: Into the Appalachians.
A very slender Moon... (All photos by Author). The mountains always beckon. In the end, all astronomers must heed the call of dark, pristine skies and head into… [more]
The Top Astronomy Events for 2013.
It has arrived. Welcome to our official guide to the fascinating, the unique, and the down right bizarre in the realm of astronomy coming to a sky near you in 2013.… [more]
An excellent collection! Some years ago, we toyed with the idea of writing a post on Science Fiction poetry. As it came up in the queue, we pondered if there would even be enough to write an entire blog post about. We’d encountered a few examples of sci-fi poetry over the years, but it still [...]
On Sale Now! Author Mary Roach has a knack for taking our modern manicured life and looking just underneath its surface for the truly bizarre. Fans of this space will remember our review of her previous space-based opus, Packing for Mars. For her latest adventure, the author takes us from the depths of outer space [...]
Welcome to a new and exciting monthly feature from yours truly here at Astroguyz.com. As you know, when we’re not creating science and science fiction literature, we’re consuming it with gusto. This is a tradition that goes back to the halcyon pre-internet days of our youth, when books and Space: 1999 reruns were “what there [...]
On sale now! Many scientific discoveries often come out of left field. The history of science (if we learn any of the history of science at all in school) is often depicted as a neat, tidy progression from ignorance to enlightenment. How could Isaac Newton not have formulated his laws of gravity and motion, or [...]
Ready for the first solar eclipse of 2013? As we head toward the start of today’s annular solar eclipse, we thought we’d do something special and offer you an embedded player to watch the eclipse live from Australia. There’s no word on whether the broadcast embedded below will be live from the path of annularity [...]
Why yes, we HAVE seen the ISS! You just never know when you’ll come face-to-face with Woo. We recently wrote about Comet ISON on Universe Today and how conspiracy crackpots are already lining up to capitalize on the projected “Comet of the Century.” It’s really win-win for them; if the comet lives up to expectations, [...]
On sale now! Cosmology is “where it’s at” in modern astronomy. With advent of observatories such as Planck, COBE and WMAP, the study of the origin, nature and fate of the universe has gone from the prevue of late night philosophers to a mature science backed by hard data.
Out now from Baen Books! Word is out in the cosmos; humans are first class criminals. This week’s review offers an interesting insight into a question astrobiologists and science fiction fans have often pondered; how would we stack up against other alien species? Are we smarter, dumber, faster or the only race dexterous to play [...]
On Sale Now! It’s always great to see major world cities laid to waste all in the name of an apocalyptic science fiction saga. Perhaps, the promise of an eventual Armageddon is comforting in a way, a realization that the mundane drudgery of daily life may yet come to pass. Hey, there’s no shortage of [...]
On Sale Now! Always count on a spec ops team to get the job done. Or, as in the case of this week’s review, deliver the goods on action and adventure. Tiger by the Tail by John Ringo and Ryan Sear is a first rate, no-holds-barred action-fest that spans Southeast Asia. Out from Baen Books, [...]
1st band in space? (Credit: NASA/STS-110). What did you want to be when you grew up? Of course, this tired old saw of a question assumes that you’re already a mortgage-paying, car-pooling adult who has had those childhood dreams tempered by reality. Hey, we all know that one guy or gal in our home town [...]
On sale now! Nothing says science fiction like old school world-building. Through the use of a thoroughly constructed backdrop, the reader soon gets lost in a world as familiar as their own neighborhood. Some of our faves in terms of science fiction world building include Dune, City without End and The Quiet War saga.
On sale now! Thank our good fortune for our one large Moon. While many an astronomer might curse its presence in the night sky, its very existence gives us an astronomical phenomenon that may well be unique in our neck of the galaxy; total solar eclipses. And that happy coincidence of having a Moon [...]
On sale now! It’s time to go back to the Moon. With the recent passing of Neil Armstrong, it’s a bit disconcerting to think that in a decade or so to come, we may inhabit a world where no living human has walked on the Moon’s surface.
On sale now! Heinlein is one of the greats, an American Science fiction master on par with Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov. I grew up reading such works by the seminal great at Space Cadet, Farmer in the Sky, and Friday. To date, die-hard fans still rave about his Starship Troopers as “Star Wars [...]
On sale now! It seems that the further back you go, the less certain we are of facts in our very own history. Stories become more legendary, tales more fantastical. History seems to love a good story and never cares for any of the pesky hard truths that sometimes get in the way.
Smartphones in Action! (All photos by author.) Ah, the romantic life of a free-lance science writer. Writing offers you the freedom to set your own hours and wake up slowly when you feel like it; it also earns one the right to “sing for their supper” and starve feral and in the wild, often on [...]
Out in March! You can’t go home again as the old cliché says, but what if you were trapped there permanently? We’re uniquely adapted for life on our tiny blue-green planet, but one often wonders if our space-faring descendants might see it as otherwise. Would a living on the Earth be seen as a blessing [...]
On sale now! Anyone that follows this space knows that we love us some dystopian science fiction. From 1984 to The Hunger Games, there’s just something that’s oddly comforting about a warning presented by a frightening future heeded. But what is it that makes us think that doom and destruction is always just around the [...]
Have scope, will observe! (Photo by Author). Nothing in this universe is permanent. Stars are born, happily fusing hydrogen for the majority of their Main Sequence lives, only to swell into bloated Red Giants and perhaps engulfing the occasional civilization orbiting them. It’s sobering to think that billions of years from now, the only evidence [...]
In Power Under Pressure, the third in Andrew P. Mayer’s Society of Steam trilogy, the steampunk super heroes known as the Society of Paragons is all but eliminated by Lord Eschaton and his growing army. The battle continues between good and evil in the forms of fortified steam and fortified smoke. Lord Eschaton is furthering [...]
Passage of 2012 DA14 by the Earth. (Credit: NASA/JPL). By now, you’ve heard the news. On the night of February 15th, Near Earth Asteroid 2012 DA14 will make a close passage by our fair world. It happens sometimes; hey, it’s a shooting gallery out there, with rogue space rocks roaming the inner solar system at [...]
On sale now! History is filled with “What Ifs”. What if Einstein had never immigrated to the US? What if Lincoln had never gone to Ford’s Theatre? While many decisions in history might have been inconsequential, others may have radically altered the course of history and our role in it today.
Mercury as seen by Messenger during its 3rd flyby in 2009. (Credit: NASA/JPL). I SEE IT! Catching a glimpse of fleeting Mercury can be an unforgettable experience; orbiting the Sun once every 88 days, the innermost planet never strays far from its perch low in the dawn or dusk sky. February offers your first shot [...]
On sale now! It is one of the biggest questions in science. How unique are we? Has the drama of life and intelligence played out countless times in the history of the cosmos, or are we so improbable that we are effectively alone? Either answer is a stunning relation. In this week’s review, Perfect Planet, [...]
The Daniel Observatory open & ready for action! (All photos by Author except as noted). We love telescopes, old and new. Recently, we had a chance to explore a gem of an observatory nestled in the foothills just outside of Greenville, South Carolina. As we reported in Week 3 of our journey throughout the U.S. [...]
Comet Lemmon (arrowed) passes through the Southern Cross on January 20th. Photo by Luis Argerich. Used with permission. Astronomy in 2013 already has one great thing going for it; the potential for several bright comets. While the astro-pundits debate the potential for comets C/2011 L4 PanSTARRS later this Spring and C/2012 S1 ISON later this [...]
Sam Sykes’ The Skybound Sea, Book Three of the Aeons’ Gate Trilogy, is a remarkable cap to an absolutely action-packed trilogy. First, the title is very enigmatic. The explanation comes well into the book as our adventurers work their way — individually or in teams — to the island of Jaga to stop Ulbecetonth, the [...]
The January 26th path of the 106 Dione occultation over the US SE. (Created by the author using Google Earth). You asked, and we answered. No sooner than our “Astronomy Top 100” hit the cyber-doorstep than we received “what about event X?” from several astute readers and lovers of the cosmos. We love the feedback. [...]
On sale now! Ah, it’s the bane of many a writer, science fiction or otherwise; just how do you write a good sex scene? How do you “come at it” (bad pun intended) without sounding like the letters to the editor in the Penthouse forum? Where does romance end and erotica begin, and for us [...]
Sights near & far! (All photos by Author). Home. As Mad Max might say, “wherever you go, well, there you are,” but in the end, it’s great to come back into your own domain. Well, at least until you look at the pile of mail and backed up writing projects (such as finishing this six [...]
Jupiter & moons + shadow transit. (Photo by Author). These next few weeks are a great time to keep an eye on the largest planet in our solar system. The planet is fresh off of opposition, which occurred on December 2nd of last year, and resumes direct motion eastward through Taurus towards quadrature on February [...]
Katniss kicks butt in 2012! (Credit: Lionsgate). Ah 2013… at last, another Trek Year is upon us. And with the flip of a calendar, we realize that we’re ritualistically late for our yearly roundup of the Year in Science Fiction and a look at the year ahead. And like previous years, this list is a [...]
A transit classic! By now, you’d think that there was nothing new left to say about the transit of Venus. Fans of this space will remember our adventures chasing down the groundbreaking event last year as well as our reviews of the two landmark books The Transits of Venus & The Day the World Discovered [...]
The author & friends at the DoubleTree Hotel in downtown Charleston, South Carolina! (All pics by author). It’s never too early to start planning, especially when it comes to solar eclipses. Week five of our southeastern sojourn saw us travel down the same path that the 2017 total solar eclipse will take over the Carolinas. [...]
Artist’s conception of a flare star in action. (Credit: NASA). It’s ironic that the most common type of star also lies hidden from view in the night sky. Our Sun and others like it make up a paltry ~20% of the fusion-burning stellar engines in the Milky Way; the vast majority of stars are red [...]
We love it when obscure defunct constellations work their way into modern usage. This week brings with it the first meteor shower of 2013 by way of the Quadrantids. And let’s get the most frequent question out of the way right now, one that we always get around the beginning of each year; where the [...]