Astronomy February 2016

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Why we haven’t found another Earth. Yet.
by Nola Taylor Redd
The search for alien Earths is heating up. But there’s still no place like home.

Mercury: Land of mystery and enchantment
by Jesse Emspak
With MESSENGER behind us and BepiColombo to come, planetary scientists seek to understand the puzzling innermost planet.

Illustrated: What happens when stars collide
by David Stevenson
A cosmic star crash may light up the galaxy or be nearly undetectable.

Target 25 treats in Leo
by Michael E. Bakich
Pull out your biggest scope, and the galaxies in this kingly constellation will dazzle you.

Sharing the sky above Las Vegas
by Raymond Shubinski
This new observatory shows that what happens in Vegas also can inspire and educate.

Stargazing in the city
by Korey Haynes
Dark sites are great for veteran observers, but when throwing a star party for new friends, go where the people are.

11 top winter binocular treats
by Phil Harrington
Star clusters, asterisms, double stars, and even a nebula beckon cold-weather skygazers.

We test Nikon’s hot new astrocamera
by Tony Hallas
The D810A full-frame sensor produces colorful, ultra-low-noise images.

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