AURORA WATCH: High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras tonight and tomorrow. A solar wind stream is buffeting Earth's magnetic field and this could spark magnetic storms around the Arctic Circle: gallery.
SPROUTING GRASS MOON: According to folklore, tonight's full Moon is the "Sprouting Grass Moon"--so-called because it shines down on the sprouting grasses of northern Spring. Some of those young blades are silhouetted beautifully in this photo taken hours ago by Elias Chasiotis of Keratea, Greece:
"We had a very beautiful moonrise tonight," says Chasiotis. "The Moon was dimmed by thin clouds, so I set my Canon EOS 450D at ISO 400 and it worked perfectly."
more images: from Dennis Put of Brielle, Zuid-Holland, The Netherlands; from Doug Zubenel of Lenexa, Kansas; from Abraham Tamas of Zsámbék, Hungary
3DEEP MINIMUM: "When the sun is in the pits of the deepest solar minimum in nearly 100 years, solar photographers have to get creative," says Greg Piepol of Rockville, Maryland. "Yesterday, I photographed the sun using a Lunt Solar Systems LS100 and rendered it as a 3D anaglyph." Put on your red-blue glasses and behold the composition Piepol calls 3Deep Minimum:
Click to view the full-sized anaglyph
If you don't have 3D glasses, you can use your imagination. It looks like a ball. Of course, the sun has more relief when sunspots are present. Browse Piepol's 3D archives to see what's missing.
Explore the Sunspot Cycle
UPDATED: April 2009 Aurora Gallery
[previous Aprils: 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002]