When the sun sets on Stonehenge on the shortest day of the year, it’s rays align with several important stones. Twice a year, the streets of Manhattan also line up with the setting sun, a phenomenon dubbed “Manhattanhenge”. Really, most cities with grid systems will see a similar effect (though it’s most dramatic in cities with tall buildings and a view of the true horizon). You can use a great tool called The Photographer’s Ephemeris to find out the “henge” dates for your city grid - or even individual streets.
Yesterday, (Friday, January 24th) the sun lined up with New York Avenue, a street in DC that runs diagonally up to the White House. (The orange line indicates alignment with the setting sun).
I went out with our multimedia intern Meg Vogel, and captured some images of the sun setting in line with a rather Stonehenge-y sculpture that sits in the middle of that street.
Here are dates for sunset “henge” events in some cities this year:
Manhattan May 25th, July 17th
Philadelphia April 5th, September 6th
Washington DC March 18th, September 24th
Chicago March 16th, September 26th
Phoenix March 20th, September 22nd
Portland, OR March 18th, September 24th
Is your city/town a grid? When’s your henge?
Picture found on NPR’s "What Came Out Of World War I?" quiz: World War I was when the old world became the new. Here, a German cavalryman wears a gas mask and carries a long spear or lance, from two different ages of war.
These artworks speaks close to me on a personal level, the artist really captured the scandinavian environment while mixing it with sci-fi elements.
By Shan Jiang
In an unlikely corner of our solar system, scientists have discovered evidence of what they believe is a subterranean ocean. The water means a tiny moon orbiting Saturn could be one of the few places in the solar system with the right ingredients for life.
The moon Enceladus is only 300 miles wide—it would fit between New York City and Charlottesville, Va. It’s a mini-world with a bright, icy, frigid surface, and it is just one of an astounding 62 moons orbiting the ringed planet. But it is not just a static, boring ice ball. Fractures on the moon’s surface—evocatively named “tiger stripes”—emit jets of frozen water that help form one of the bands in Saturn’s rings.
Almost makes one wonder if the 1961 movie somehow inspired a movie of the same name (or at least the story the movie is based on) 33 years later