Let’s Celebrate the Official Start of Summer

(Photo by Flickr user mommamia)

Summer 2012 begins officially on June 20th when the Earth catches up with the correct position in its orbit around the sun. This is when the sun is at the highest point in the sky all year. What can we see on these starry summer nights? There are plenty of planets including Mars and Saturn in the West and in the morning you will see Jupiter and Venus, since the recent transit brought Venus around to the morning sky. Also, find out how to tell the distance between those twinkling stars. The most distant object that can be seen with the naked eye is the Andromeda galaxy just 2.9 million light years away. All this and more on this week’s Sky Talk.

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  • Jim M

    Derrick, you lost your chance to correct Dave and a common misperception about summer. Dave asked “what’s the correlation between summer temperatures and proximity to the sun and the amount of daylight per day?” You should’ve responded: the proximity to the sun has nothing to do with it and the extra hours of sunlight have a slight impact. It’s the tilt of the earth toward the sun in summer which is most important…

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