You can see planets without a telescope. People have been seeing Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn for thousands of years. Even though Uranus was the first planet discovered by telescope, sometimes it can be seen without one.
Google doodles are little drawings and animations that incorporate the Google name into a presentation of a person or event of note. Here are five doodles with an astronomy theme, including asteroids, a lunar eclipse and how the speed of light was calculated by observing Jupiter and Io.
October 4, 1957. A small object had people around the globe looking excitedly - or anxiously - up at the sky. Satellites are now such a fact of life, it's hard to imagine the effect of the first one. In sending up Sputnik, the USSR had thrown down the gauntlet for the Cold War space race.
Most of our knowledge of Neptune and Uranus is based on Voyager 2's visits. Its grand tour of the four giant planets used a rare alignment of the planets that let the gravity of each one boost the spacecraft to the next one. No other probe has been to either of the ice giants.
Rosetta, the European Space Agency (ESA) spacecraft, traveled for ten years and billions of miles with its lander in order to rendezvous with a comet, and accompany it as it moved through the inner Solar System past the Sun.
Caroline Herschel was an intelligent young woman trapped in domestic servitude by her mother. Her brother William rescued her and trained her as a singer. After he discovered the planet Uranus, the two of them ended up forming a great partnership whose work revolutionized the study of astronomy.
Saturn's rings, spiral galaxies, solar flares. Astrophotography has shown us some wonderful images, but it's more than pretty pictures. It has allowed us to discover objects too dim for the human eye to see. Partnered with spectroscopy, it moved astronomy from mapping to understanding the stars.