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Astronomy Picture of the Day – Diamond Ring in a Cloudy Sky

Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2017 August 25

Diamond Ring in a Cloudy Sky
Image Credit & Copyright: Ashley Marando


Explanation: As the Moon’s shadow swept across the US on August 21, eclipse chasers in the narrow path of totality were treated to a diamond ring in the sky. At the beginning and end of totality, the fleeting and beautiful effect often produces audible gasps from an amazed audience. It occurs just before or after the appearance of the faint solar corona with a brief ring of light and glimpse of Sun. In this scene from the end of totality at Central, South Carolina, clouds drift near the Sun’s diamond ring in the sky.


Earth Sky News for August 25th: A really big asteroid is about to pass Earth

A really big asteroid is about to pass Earth

Named for Florence Nightingale, asteroid 3122 Florence is the biggest near-Earth object to pass this close since this category of objects was discovered over a century ago! It might be visible in binoculars.

The next attraction coming up in our skies might be an asteroid big enough to be seen in small telescopes, and maybe even in binoculars, as a small, very slow-moving “star.” Asteroid 1981 ET3 – also known as 3122 Florence – is a huge space rock at least 2.7 miles (4.35 km) in diameter. According to Paul Chodas at the Center for Near Earth Object Studies:

Florence is the largest asteroid to pass this close to our planet since the first near-Earth asteroid was discovered over a century ago.

Asteroid 3122 Florence will safely pass by our planet on September 1, 2017 at over 18 times the Earth-moon distance. The asteroid will not be visible to the unaided eye. It will, however, become visible in small amateur telescopes by late August, in the course of what will become the closest encounter to Earth by this asteroid since 1890.

It won’t come this close again until after the year 2500.

The Virtual Telescope Project will offer a live stream of the asteroid pass on August 31, 2017, beginning at 19:30 UTC; translate to your time zone.

Among the near-Earth asteroids classified as Potentially Hazardous, Florence is one of the biggest. Bigger asteroids include 1999 JM8 (4.3 miles or 7 km), 4183 Cuno (3.5 miles or 5.6 km) and 3200 Phaeton (3.2 miles or 5.1 km), which is thought to be the parent body of the Geminid meteor shower.

Of these, however, Florence is brightest, making it an excellent target for possible glimpses via small telescopes and binoculars.

Its size of about half the elevation of Mount Everest should allow it to reach a visual magnitude of +8.75 to +9, making it a relatively easy target for experienced observers at sites with dark skies.

Astronomers will study the flyby of the huge asteroid. Radar observations are scheduled from NASA’s Goldstone Radar between August 29 to September 8, 2017. The Arecibo Observatory will also analyze Florence from September 2 – 5, 2017. Paul Chodas of the Center of NEO Studies said:

The September 1 flyby of Florence will provide astronomers with an excellent opportunity to make detailed measurements of a large near-Earth asteroid. In particular, radar scientists expect to obtain high-resolution images of Florence that could reveal surface features as small as about 10 meters (30 feet).

The asteroid rotates in about 2.5 hours and radar observations may reveal if Florence is a close or contact binary, or even if the space rock has its own small orbiting “moon.”

Closest approach to Earth is expected to occur at about 8:06 am EDT on September 1, 2017, but backyard observers using a telescope can try to get a glimpse of the space rock a few nights before that date.

On the night of August 27, the asteroid is in the constellation of Piscis Austrinus reaching about 19º above the southern horizon as seen from central U.S. Late in the night of August 29, the space rock gets into Capricornus and reaches an elevation of 33º as seen from Kansas.

Its distance will make it difficult to detect its slow motion across the stars, unless you are using at least a 5″ diameter or bigger telescope and observe in the right direction.

Although asteroid Florence is travelling at 30,266 miles per hour (48,708 km/h), the distance will make it appear so slow that observers should keep watching the fairly bright asteroid for about 5 to 10 minutes to detect its movement across the stars.

Florence was discovered on March 2, 1981 from the Siding Spring Observatory in Australia. It is named in honor of Florence Nightingale (1820-1910), the founder of modern nursing.

Bottom line: Asteroid 3122 Florence will safely pass by our planet on September 1, 2017 at over 18 times the Earth-moon distance. It’s the largest asteroid to pass this close to our planet since the first near-Earth asteroid was discovered over a century ago and might be visible to observers at dark sites using small telescopes, and even binoculars.

Published on EarthSky.org

Your Karmic Number for the Day is Seven

Your Karmic Number of the Day

Your hands may be tingling and feeling hot because you are a natural healer right now, says 7. A course in energy healing, massage, or reflexology may help your personal growth or even lead you toward a new career. Even just researching these online can be greatly beneficial and fun. Go into this as an adventure in self-exploration and kindness toward others. You will find new people who will be supportive of you regardless of how you decide to move forward with this gift. They could become friends for life – maybe even more!

Your Weekend Influences for August 25th

Your Weekend Influences for August 25th


Tarot Influence

Ten of Cups Reversed

Betrayal and failure. The loss of freindship and love.











Astrological Influence


While Gemini always has its duality to keep under control, it does manage to bring both humor and intelligence into any situation.










Element Influence

Air reversed

Air reversed denotes a lack of freedom to move through life as you want.

Your Weekend Love Tarot for August 25th is The Hanged Man

Your Weekend Love Tarot for August 25th

The Hanged Man

The Hanged Man asks, “What do you see from a new perspective?” If you look, you catch sight of the truer nature of a union. You feel yourself relax. You live in the future now, and not in the past. You learn not to get excited over every little upturn and downturn. This is the message of the card today: focus your eyes on the moment and nothing slips beyond the radar of awareness.

Your Daily Rune for Friday, August 25th is Berkano

Your Rune for Today



“Burr-can-oh” – Literally: “Birch Goddess” – Esoteric: Birth, Sanctuary

Rune of continued growth and continual rebirth or renewal in all things. The rune of becoming.

Psi: secrecy, silence, safety, mature wisdom, dependence

Energy: container/releaser, female fertility, trees and plantlife

Mundane: motherhood, healing, gardening, child raising, the womb

Divinations: Birth, becoming, life changes, shelter, liberation, sanctuary, secrets; or blurring of consciousness, deceit, sterility, stagnation, conspiracy, insecurity

Rebirth in the spirit
Strengthens the power of secrecy
Works of concealment and protection
To contain and hold other powers together
Realization of stillness, the Now-ness of all things
Bringing ideas to fruition in the creative process

Learn the Tarot: Heal Yourself With the Tarot

Heal Yourself With the Tarot

Use the power of the Tarot find inner peace


We’ve all been there. That feeling of not being able to sleep, or concentrate, or feel a sense of inner peace. Whether it’s because of problems at work, issues in your relationship, or things going on in the news, it’s easy to feel anxious about what the future holds for you. This is a time when many people decide to turn to the Tarot.

Tarot cards have been used for centuries to give people peace of mind in times of uncertainty. There are many people who don’t know what Tarot is, or worse, are fearful of it. Rest assured, there’s no need to be scared of this ancient divination! Think of a Tarot as a tool for healing, one that gives you guidance for any situation in your life.

So, how does it work? First, you must ask a question. The Tarot cards are shuffled and arranged into a pattern with each position in that pattern relating to a specific aspect of your question. The symbols on each Tarot card are then analyzed to give you insight and advice based on the question you asked.

If you’re ready to give Tarot a try, get started below! If you’ve revealed the meaning of your first three cards and need additional insight, you can by getting a full Celtic Cross reading! All you need to do is choose the remaining seven cards just below your spread.

Do you still have questions about how the Tarot can help you? Keep reading..

Part of the Daily Insight Group ©2017

Tarot Card of the Day for August 25th is Ace of Wind

Tarot Card of the Day

Ace of Wind

August 25th, 2017

This suit represents the rational mind and its ability to discriminate. Swords cut through things in order to pierce illusion, to differentiate between fantasy and reality.

In the image of this Ace, a single upraised sword represents your prime motive or guiding ideal — the vision that guides you through life’s changing fortunes with single-minded clarity.

The sword is sometimes shown piercing a silver and/or laurel crown, a symbol of optimism implying evolution, progress, a sense of hope and victory. It is occasionally shown pointed downwards — a darker message, which refers to sacrifice, challenges and a critical environment.


Part of the Daily Insight Group ©2017