This year’s highlights in the world of astronomy include:
1) An image of the shadow of a black hole resembles an ‘orange doughnut.’ A supermassive Black Hole was seen in silhouette against the background of its surrounding accretion disk.
2) Liquid water is identified at Saturn’s moon Enceladus.
3) The New Horizons spacecraft flew past Pluto in 2016, then flew past an even more distant object on New Year’s Day 2019 – a double-lobed Kuiper Belt object now known as Arrokoth. Its shape resembles the BB-8 droid from the recent ‘Star Wars’ chapters. It features a small circle atop a larger circle, except it’s flattened.
Assessing the night sky: Venus and the Moon are visible tonight in the southwest just after sunset.