Category Archives: Astronomy

On My Bookshelf: Pearls of the Southern Skies

This is an excellent indulgence in astronomy eye candy. Photographer Dieter Willasch presents seventy-one images of galaxies and nebulae. Auke Slotegraaf adds a page of commentary on each. This is one of the better coffee table books on astronomy I’ve … Continue reading

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Priest and Scientist

I recommend the brief Crux article on people who were both priests and scientists. I suggest skipping the commentary, though. A few Jesuits were among the clergy listed, but one of my favorites was a diocesan priest: Georges Lemaître (1894-1966) The … Continue reading

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On My Bookshelf: The Copernicus Complex

Science writer and astrobiologist Caleb Scharf tackles the question of life in the universe. Is it common? Is it rare? Are we unique, here on Earth? The simple answer is: we don’t know. The more complex answer is that we … Continue reading

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Immense Heaven

The astronomy picture of the day is Laniakea, the newly discovered/defined super-structure that includes our Milky Way Galaxy. There’s already a Wikipedia entry. The massive Virgo Supercluster is now just an “appendage” in the bigger scheme of things. It’s hard … Continue reading

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Look Up, Look Southwest

Western European readers, you don’t have much time to catch this, but the moon crashes a close visual encounter with Mars and Saturn after sunset tonight in the southwest. Amateur astronomer Bob King has a nice blog post at Universe … Continue reading

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Before the Big Bang, There Was a Cosmic Egg

The twentieth-century Belgian priest and physicist lends his name to the European supply ship for the International Space Station. He should be more famous, as he developed many of the explanations that describe the expanding universe. Msgr. Lemaitre’s calculations suggested that … Continue reading

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Interviewing Vatican Astronomers

America has a nice brief interview with two American Jesuits in Italy, at the Vatican Observatory at Castel Gandolfo. Astronomer Guy Consolmagno is the recent recipient of the Carl Sagan Medal. Paul Mueller is the head of the Jesuit community … Continue reading

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