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Category: Astronomy

Pedestrians walking (during Chicagohenge) across a crosswalk while the Sun sets in the distance with the Willis Tower in view.

AstroFan: Understanding Chicagohenge

Thursday March 12th
Bianca Anderson

Header Image: Chicagohenge as seen from West Adams Street. Image Credit: Tim Hara Update: This blog is revised each year with updated dates of Chicagohenge and the equinoxes. Greetings fellow Chicagoans! It is almost that time of year when nature and architecture harmoniously come together to create the phenomenon known as Chicagohenge. For those who […]

Look Up at the Big Dipper and the Little Dipper.

AstroFan: Tale of the Drinking Gourd

Tuesday February 18th
Bianca Anderson

Arguably, one of the most well-known fixtures of our night sky is the Big Dipper. But did you know that this night-sky staple once served as a beacon to freedom here in America during the time of the Underground Railroad? In the early-to-mid 19th century, countless American slaves used the Big Dipper⁠—aka the Drinking Gourd⁠—as […]

Hubble Deep Field Image

AstroFan: Galaxy Types!

Friday January 24th
Bianca Anderson

Header Caption: This Hubble Deep Field image shows a snapshot of the diverse types of galaxies in our universe. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/STScI Hubble Deep Field Team Did you know that up until the last century, humans believed that our Milky Way was the only galaxy in the known universe? Today, we now know that this […]

Adler Skywatch: January 2020

Wednesday January 1st
Karen Donnelly

Happy New Year! Though you likely won’t be able to tell the difference, Earth is at its closest to the Sun for the year this month, January 2020. Perihelion, the point in Earth’s annual orbit where it’s closest to the Sun, occurs each year in early January. This year, perihelion occurs at 1:48 a.m. Chicago time on […]

2017 Total Solar Eclipse

10 Astronomical Discoveries and Historic Space Events to Close Out the Decade

Tuesday December 31st
Colleen Cesaretti

Header Image: Total solar eclipse that occurred on August 21, 2017. Image Credit: NASA Out with the old and in with the new decade! As 2019 comes to a close, we’re reflecting on monumental astronomical discoveries and historic space events that happened over the last 10 years. We asked our stellar staff members to tell […]

This is an image of the Pleiades star cluster. You can see in this image faint clouds of bluish nebulae and dozens of bright stars scattered in the distance.

AstroFan: The Interstellar Medium and Nebulae

Saturday December 28th
Bianca Anderson

Image Caption: An example of nebulae (and the interstellar medium) can be found in this picture of the Pleiades, an open cluster consisting of approximately 3,000 stars at a distance of 400 light-years (120 parsecs) from Earth in the constellation of Taurus. Image Credit: NASA, ESA, AURA/Caltech, Palomar Observatory Even the most novice of stargazers are […]

Guests dressed up in costume at Adler After Dark: Go Boldy in 2016.

Does The Multiverse Exist?

Thursday December 12th
Megan Lothamer

Header Image: Guests dressed up in costume at Adler After Dark: Go Boldy in 2016. If you’re even a little bit into sci-fi, then there’s a good chance you’ve watched, read, or consumed SOMETHING that references multiverses. In fact, multiverse theory has gained popularity as of late. From Marvel comics to Doctor Who to Rick and […]

An artist’s illustration of Kepler-452b.

Exoplanets: Sci-Fi vs. Fact

Thursday December 5th
Grace Wolf-Chase, Ph.D.

Header Image: An artist’s illustration of Kepler-452b. Image Credit: NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle Editor’s Note: Updated in May 2023. I was an undergraduate physics major at Cornell University, with my eye on a career in astronomy, when I saw the original Star Wars movie following its release in 1977. A rather famous astronomer and science popularizer […]

This image depicts the thick ring of dust that can obscure the energetic processes that occur near a supermassive black hole of an active galactic nuclei.

AstroFan: A Feast Fit For A Black Hole

Friday November 29th
Bianca Anderson

Header Image: An artist’s illustration of a thick ring of dust near the supermassive black hole of an active galactic nuclei. Image Credit: NASA / SOFIA / Lynette Cook   Ah yes, it is the day after Thanksgiving, and I bet you’re currently dealing with the inevitable ‘post-feast malaise’. What if I told you that at this […]

Understanding Planet Transits

Friday November 8th
Megan Lothamer

Planet transits are unique celestial events that allow us to measure the geometry of our own Solar System and beyond! Catch the next transit of Mercury at the Adler Planetarium this November!


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