Urban Astronomer

Ben Trefny

Paul Salazar, or – as he calls himself on his blog – the Urban Astronomer recently joined KALW’s Ben Trefny in studio to talk about what’s up with the universe.

Dave Dugdale / Flikr Creative Commons

This weekend, over 100 meteors per hour will descend on Earth in the annual Perseid Shower, otherwise known as the "fireball champion." This shower contains the highest concentration of bright meteors, called fireballs, which are known for leaving bright, visible streaks in the sky as they fall, more so than any other recurring meteor shower. San Francisco's "Urban Astronomer" Paul Salazar explained what you can see in the night sky over the weekend. 

UFOs may be a bit far fetched, but this week there is something else coming from outer space. The Comet PanSTARRS can be seen in western skies this week.  To learn more about the science behind the spectacle, KALW's Ben Trefny spoke with Urban Astronomer Paul Salazar.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user johncudw2399

Paul Salazar is a member of the San Francisco Amateur Astronomers and keeps a regular astronomy blog called the Urban Astronomer. He sat down with KALW’s Ben Trefny to talk about the upcoming solar eclipse. He also explained what he calls a "spectacular solar event" that only happens twice every hundred years. It's called the Transit of Venus and it's happening on June 5. Listen to find out where and when to watch.

It’s only once a year that you can experience almost complete darkness in the afternoon sky. This Sunday, the Western United States will experience a solar eclipse. But in a special path across Northern California, the moon will be almost fully enclosed by the disc of the sun, creating a “Ring of Fire” effect. To learn more about the science behind the spectacle – and another reason to look up later in May – KALW's Ben Trefny talked to our local expert, Paul Salazar. Salazar is a member of the San Francisco Amateur Astronomers and keeps a regular astronomy blog.