Robert Makemson Guide to Astronomy in Jacksonville


Robert Makemson Designs Dome Homes
Observational Physics
Earth and Planetary Science
Outer Limits of Space
Tonight's Sky for Jacksonville Astronomy
Virtual Interactive Solar-system Telescope

The Northeast Florida Astronomical Society Florida Community College Astronomy Club Ancient City Astronomy Club

For beginners

For Everyone!!!

Amateur Astronomy Info

Amateur Astronomy Orgs



Basics of Astronomy

Beyond the solar system

Cosmology and miscellaneous info

History of Astronomy


K-12 Teachers

Observatories, et al.

Online 'scopes the public can use

Other Instruments

Radio Astronomy

Research Astronomy

Solar system topics

Space Art

Spacecraft/Satellite info (past)

Spacecraft/Satellite info (operational)

Spacecraft/Satellite info (future missions)

  • ALOS-2 - Advanced Land Observing Satellite - 2.
  • Andromeda - A satellite designed to look for gamma-ray bursts in the Andromeda galaxy.
  • Astro-G - Japanese radio-astronomical satellite.
  • BepiColombo - To orbit Mercury, if it gets funded.
  • Chandrayaan-2 - A lander/rover mission to the Moon by India.
  • Cross-Scale - 7 spacecraft forming 2 nested tetrahedra to quantify plasmas on different scales.
  • Cryosat-2 - Follow-on to Cryosat. A synthetic aperture radar designed to measure ice-sheet elevation and sea-ice height protruding the water.
  • DESDynI (Deformation, Ecosystem Structure and Dynamics of Ice) - Gathering info to understand Earth's active processes and environmental change.
  • DSCOVR - Deep Space Climate Observatory will go to the Lagrange-1 point (L-1) and look at the earth.
  • EarthCARE - Earth clouds, aerosol and radiation explorer.
  • EJSM (Europa Jupiter System Mission) - What were the conditions for the frormation of the Jupiter system? Is Europa habitable?
  • Elisa - 4 microsatellites will map the positions of radar and other transmitters and their characteristics.
  • Euclid - To map the geometry of the dark Universe.
  • ExoMars - To further characterize the biological environment of Mars leading the human exploration, eventually.
  • GAIA - To create the largest and most precise 3-D chart of our Galaxy.
  • GCOM-C - Global change observation mission - Climate satellite.
  • GCOM-W - Global change observation mission - Water satellite.
  • GIOVE-A2 - Galileo In-Orbit Validation Element preparing for testing a European satellite navigation system.
  • GPM - Global precipitation measurement satellite.
  • ILN - International Lunar Network - A global luner network of ground stations.
  • IXO (International X-ray Observatroy) - To answer: What ar s the fundamental physical laws of the Universe? and How did the Universe originat and what is it made of?
  • HY-2A - A Chinese satellite for marine remote sensing.
  • HY-2B - A Chinese satellite for marine remote sensing. Follow-on to HY-2A.
  • HY-2C - A Chinese satellite for marine remote sensing. Follow-on to HY-2B.
  • HY-2D - A Chinese satellite for marine remote sensing. Follow-on to HY-2C.
  • Jason-3 - An oceanography mission to discover the tie between oceans and atmosphere, etc.
  • Jason-CS - Jason-CS (Continuity of Service) is to ensure overlap of data from Jason-3.
  • JWST - James Webb Space Telecsope - To examine the first light of the Universe - objects which formed shortly after the Big Bang.
  • KOMPSAT-5 - A Korean for all-weather day/night monitoring of the Korean peninsula.
  • LADEE - Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer - Will orbit to Moon to characterize it's atmosphere.
  • LISA - Laser Interferomer Space Antenna - To search for gravity waves from black holes.
  • Marco Polo - To return to Earth an unaltered sample from a near-Earth asteroid.
  • Megha Tropiques - Will provide scientific data on the contribution of the water cycle to the tropical atmosphere.
  • MICROSCOPE - To compare the effects of a gravitational acceleration on bodies of different composition.
  • Moonrise - Moonrise would focus on the Aitken Basin at the Moon's South Pole and return samples to Earth.
  • MSG (Meteosat Third Generation) - Dedicated to operational metrology to monitor climate and improve weather forecasting.
  • NuStar - Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array - To study the sky through high energy x-rays.
  • Orbiting Carbon Observatory - Mission failed when the payload failed to separate from the launch vehicle.
  • PHOBOS GRUNT - Probing the origins of Mars' small moon.
  • Plato - To discover and characterize a large number of close-by exoplanetary systems.
  • PLEIADES - Optical satellites that will provide imagery with a resolution of 0.7 meters.
  • RadioAstron - An international project to launch a 10 m radio telescope into a high apogee orbit around the Earth.
  • SAFIR - Single Aperture Far Infrared Observatory - Will study the earliest phases of galaxy formation.
  • SAGE (Surface and Atmosphere Geochemical Explorer) - To study Venus' surface, climate and atmosphere.
  • Saral (Satellite with ARgos and ALtika) - Complementary to Jason-2. To make measurements of sea surface height, wave heights and wind speed.
  • SIM-Lite - Astrometric Observatory - Will determine the positions and distances of nearby stars and look for Earth-like planets.
  • SMAP (Soil Moisture Active Passive) - To provide global mapping of soil moisture and freeze/thaw state.
  • Solar Orbiter - To produce images of the Sun and the closest in situ measurements.
  • Solar Probe - To study the Sun's corona by flying through it.
  • Space Technology 7 - Will demonstrate trajectory control and formation-flying position control.
  • Spectr-R - Also known as RadioAstron. An international project to launch a 10 m radio telescope into a high apogee orbit around the Earth.
  • Spectrum-X-Gamma Coordination facility - An international high-energy astrophysics observatory being built.
  • Spica - To understand how galaxies, stars and planets form and evolve.
  • SWARM - 3 satellites in different orbits to monitor changes in the Earth's magnetic field over time.
  • Tandemi/TSSM - Titan and Enceladus Mission. Studying a couple moons of Saturn.
  • VENμS - Vegetation and Environment monitoring on a New Micro-Satellite.

Terrestrial events

Weather Resources


Stellarium - Probably the best planetarium software available, providing a photorealistic night sky (Windows, Mac and Linux) - Free too!

Registax - The best image stacking software for CCD/Webcam imaging.


Astronomy Picture of the Day Calendar


Real Time Satellite Tracking


Nasa Space Calendar


The International Astronomical Union Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams