STAR GAZER
THE INTERNATIONAL EDITION



STAR GAZER is seen nationally on most PBS stations. There is a five minute and a one minute version available each week. If it is not currently on your PBS station we suggest you contact your local PBS programming director and let them know it is available free to all PBS stations. You may take STAR GAZER off satellite for personal use, classroom use, astronomy club use, etc. without written permission.

Satellite feed info:

GE 3 - PBS Transponder 512 - Digital Only!

Friday 6/18/04 - 1800-1830 Eastern Time 4 Shows

Half Hour Feed - 4 shows


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE for $16.00 plus $6.00 shipping (within the U.S). Please send a VISA, MasterCard, check, money order or an official school purchase order to the address below:

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators

Lorain County JVS NASA CORE / 15181 Route 58 South / 440/775-1400 / FAX 440/775-1460 / nasaco@leeca.org / http://core.nasa.gov


Notice : These are working drafts of the scripts for STAR GAZER.
Changes may well be made as production requires.

STAR GAZER

Episode # 04-27 / 1387th Show
To Be Aired : Monday 7/5/2004 through
Sunday 7/11/2004

"Next Week The Morning Star Reaches
Its Greatest Brilliancy"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. Next week on Thursday July 15th the celestial object known as 'The Morning Star' for thousands of years will reach its greatest brilliancy only 10 1/2 weeks after the object known as 'The Evening Star' for thousands of years reached its greatest brilliancy, and it's not just by coincidence. So what's really happening? Let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for about 9 weeks ago, Sunday May 2nd an hour after sunset facing west where you would have seen the ringed planet Saturn, the red planet Mars, the red shoulder star of Orion, Betelgeuse and close to the horizon, Aldebaran the red eye star of Taurus the Bull. And above Aldebaran, the most brilliant object in the sky other than the Sun and the Moon, the object known to almost all of human history as 'The Evening Star'. I especially like the name the ancient Greeks gave ' The Evening Star', Hesperos which means westerly because 'The Evening Star' always appears in the west. Hesperos reached its greatest brilliancy on May 2nd. But next week its twin sister or brother star will reach its greatest brilliancy. Let me show you.

O.K., we're facing east next Thursday morning July 15th an hour before sunrise, where the most dazzling object will be 'The Morning Star' looking almost like a UFO or the landing light of an airplane because of its super brilliancy. And it would seem logical that if the ancient Greeks had a name for the evening star, they would have also named its twin, the morning star. And in fact they named it Phosphoros which means 'the light bearer' because Phosphoros always makes its appearance an hour or two before sunrise. So in a sense Phosphoros is the bearer of the morning light. Now if you look closely above the morning star you will see the red star Aldebaran which nine weeks ago was below the evening star which would lead one to suspect that perhaps the evening star and the morning star are not separate objects but are one and the same. And in fact, such is the case. A case put forward by the ancient Greek mathematician, Pythagoras. Indeed the name we now give to the morning star and the evening star is the name the Romans gave it, Venus.

And although our ancestors thought Venus was a star we now know that it is an 8,000 mile wide Earth-sized planet. And since Venus and Earth constantly change their positions in their orbits on May 2nd Venus was to the east of the Sun as seen from Earth and thus visible as the evening star in the west after sunset. It appeared lower each night throughout the rest of May and finally disappeared below the horizon in early June. Then on June 8th it passed directly between our Earth and Sun which was an event we could actually see. And then it slowly moved to the other side of the Sun and is now west of it and thus is visible as the morning star in the east before sunrise. So enjoy Venus at its greatest brilliancy next week when it will be as bright and as close to Earth as it was on May 2nd. Isn't astronomy fun? Keep Looking Up!


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"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.


Star Gazer Minute

#04-27 M

7/05/2004 thru 7/11/2004

"Next Week The Morning Star Reaches
Its Greatest Brilliancy"

 

Horkheimer: On July 15th the morning star will reach its greatest brilliancy! On May 2nd the Evening Star which the Greeks named Hesperos reached its greatest brilliancy above the red star Aldebaran. And next Thursday the Morning Star, which the Greeks called Phosphoros, reaches its greatest brilliancy below Aldebaran. And although the ancient Greeks thought the Morning Star and Evening Star were separate objects, we now know that they're one and the same and not a star but the 8,000 mile wide planet Venus. In May Venus was to the east of the Sun and visible as the Evening Star. Then it disappeared and on June 8th passed directly between our Earth and Sun and is now west of it and visible as the Morning Star. Keep Looking Up!

How did you like this episode?
Please give us your comments. (Click Here)

 

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.


Don't miss the cartoon version of
'STAR GAZER' in each monthly issue of


* This week's Sky At A Glance and Planet Roundup from Sky & Telescope.
This week's Sky At A Glance displays current week only.

Starry Night Deluxe was used to produce this episode of Star Gazer







STAR GAZER
THE INTERNATIONAL EDITION

STAR GAZER is seen nationally on most PBS stations. There is a five minute and a one minute version available each week. If it is not currently on your PBS station we suggest you contact your local PBS programming director and let them know it is available free to all PBS stations. You may take STAR GAZER off satellite for personal use, classroom use, astronomy club use, etc. without written permission.

Satellite feed info:

GE 3 - PBS Transponder 512 - Digital Only!

Friday 6/18/04 - 1800-1830 Eastern Time 4 Shows

Half Hour Feed - 4 shows


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE for $16.00 plus $6.00 shipping (within the U.S). Please send a VISA, MasterCard, check, money order or an official school purchase order to the address below:

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators

Lorain County JVS NASA CORE / 15181 Route 58 South / 440/775-1400 / FAX 440/775-1460 / nasaco@leeca.org / http://core.nasa.gov


Notice : These are working drafts of the scripts for STAR GAZER.
Changes may well be made as production requires.



 

STAR GAZER

Episode #04-28 /1388th Show
To Be Aired : Monday 7/12/2004 through Sunday 7/18/2004

"Planet Hopping With The Moon This July!"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. And even though the Sun sets quite late in the summer time at mid northern latitudes, nevertheless you can still use the Moon to do some planet hopping before midnight this July. Indeed, you'll be able to use the Moon to find both the M&M planets and good old Jupiter.

O.K., we've got our skies set up facing west about 30 to 40 minutes after sunset any night this week and if you have a relatively clear unobstructed horizon you'll see four important cosmic lights, three of which are planets and one a star. Closest to the horizon and the dimmest of them all, tiny, reddish orange, 4,000 mile wide Mars. Above it is the planet which is never seen very far away from the Sun because it is the closest planet to the Sun, even tinier than Mars, 3,000 mile wide Mercury. And if you have a hard time seeing it I suggest using a pair of binoculars on both it and Mars. Then almost on a straight line with Mars and Mercury is the brightest star of Leo the Lion, the one that marks his heart, Regulus. But it is relatively dim only because it's so incredibly far away, 77 light years beyond. In reality, it dwarfs all the planets in our solar system and even our own Sun. In fact it is five times as wide as our Sun and 160 times brighter.

Next if you continue that straight line you'll bump into the brightest object in this part of the heavens, our old friend king of the planets, 88,000 mile wide Jupiter. And if you do happen to have your binoculars out, you'll actually be able to see the four largest of its several dozen moons. In fact you'll be able to watch them change their positions night after night as they move in constant orbit around Jupiter. So these are the four bright objects you'll see if you go out almost any night this week 30 to 40 minutes after sunset facing west. But if you're like many beginners and have a hard time making sure whether or not what you're looking at is really what you think you're looking at, then you can planet hop using the Moon starting this Sunday. Because on Sunday right after sunset an exquisite slender sliver of a crescent Moon complete with Earth shine which will look like a black full Moon nestled within the crescent will be parked right to the side of Mars. So you'll know for sure you've found Mars.

Then on Monday night the 19th, a slightly bigger crescent with Earthshine will be parked right above Mercury and in fact will make an exquisite triangle with Mercury and Regulus so you can make sure you've identified both Mercury and Regulus. Then on Tuesday night the 20th, the Moon will be half way between Regulus and Jupiter. And on the 21st an even fatter crescent will be parked up to Jupiter's left. So there you have it, the Moon and Mars; the Moon, Mercury and Regulus; the Moon to the right of Jupiter and the Moon to Jupiter's left. Planet hopping with the Moon is always great fun so why not give it a try? Keep Looking Up!

How did you like this episode?
Please give us your comments. (Click Here)

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

 

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.



Star Gazer Minute

#04-28 M

7/12/2004 thru 7/18/2004

"Planet Hopping With The Moon This July!"

Horkheimer: You can use the Moon to do some fancy planet hopping before midnight next week. This Sunday an exquisite slender sliver of a crescent Moon will be parked right next to Mars. And on Monday night a slightly bigger crescent will make a triangle with the planet Mercury and the brightest star of Leo the lion, Regulus. On Tuesday the Moon will be half way between Regulus and the king of the planets Jupiter. And on Wednesday an even fatter crescent will be parked up to Jupiter's left. The Moon and Mars on Sunday; the Moon, Mercury and Regulus on Monday; the Moon to the right of Jupiter on Tuesday and the Moon to Jupiter's left on Wednesday. Planet hopping with the Moon is always great fun. So Keep Looking Up!


Please give us your comments. (Click Here)


For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

 

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.

 


Don't miss the cartoon version of
'STAR GAZER' in each monthly issue of




 
* This week's Sky At A Glance and Planet Roundup from Sky & Telescope.

This week's Sky At A Glance displays current week only.


Starry Night Deluxe was used to produce this episode of Star Gazer






STAR GAZER
THE INTERNATIONAL EDITION


STAR GAZER is seen nationally on most PBS stations. There is a five minute and a one minute version available each week. If it is not currently on your PBS station we suggest you contact your local PBS programming director and let them know it is available free to all PBS stations. You may take STAR GAZER off satellite for personal use, classroom use, astronomy club use, etc. without written permission.

Satellite feed info:

GE 3 - PBS Transponder 512 - Digital Only!

Friday 6/18/04 - 1800-1830 Eastern Time 4 Shows

Half Hour Feed - 4 shows


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE for $16.00 plus $6.00 shipping (within the U.S). Please send a VISA, MasterCard, check, money order or an official school purchase order to the address below:

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators

Lorain County JVS NASA CORE / 15181 Route 58 South / 440/775-1400 / FAX 440/775-1460 / nasaco@leeca.org / http://core.nasa.gov



Notice : These are working drafts of the scripts for STAR GAZER.
Changes may well be made as production requires.



STAR GAZER

Episode # 04-29 / 1389th Show

To Be Aired : Monday 7/19/2004 through Sunday 7/25/2004

"The Moon Visits My Favorite Summer
Star And Constellation!"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. Every summer in late July my favorite summer star and constellation reach their highest points above the horizon just after dark. And next week you can use the Moon to find them. Let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for any night in late July just after dark which is about 9 to 10 p.m. depending on where you live. And if you face due south you'll see a pattern of bright stars shaped like a giant fish hook or the capital letter j. It's my favorite summer constellation Scorpius the Scorpion and it contains my favorite summer star Antares which marks his heart if you imagine the scorpion looking something like this. And not only is Antares in the right place for a scorpion's heart but it's also the right color, red. And the reason it's my favorite summer star is because it's the biggest star we can see in summer's skies. In fact it is 700 times wider than our own almost one million mile wide Sun. So huge we could fit 350 million Suns inside it.Or if you like to think of it this way, it is so gigantic that if we placed one edge of it where our Sun is it would reach out past the orbits of Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars even beyond the orbit of Jupiter. Wow!

But if you're one of those beginning star gazers who has a hard time finding the stars next Monday you can use the Moon as a finder because on Monday night July 26th an exquisite ten day old Moon will be just to the right of the three stars that mark the top of the scorpion. Plus on Tuesday the 27th an 11 day old Moon will be just to the left of super humongous Antares. And although they'll look close, keep in mind it's just an illusion because our tiny 2,000 mile wide Moon will be only 227,000 miles away whereas Antares will be a whopping 13 1/2 billion times farther away, 520 light years beyond. Or if you like to think of it this way, it takes only 1 1/5 seconds for light to reach us from the Moon, but it takes 520 years for light to reach us from Antares which means that when we look at Antares we see it not as it exists now but as it existed 520 years ago, just before Columbus set sail.

Now if you look at Scorpius on a night when there's no Moon out during the time of the new Moon and if you're far from city lights you will notice that the bottom half of Scorpius, including all of the stinger is located in that faint ribbon of light we call the Milky Way. And if you have really good eyesight or a pair of binoculars you'll see two fuzzy clouds just above the stinger. They're called M-6 and M-7 and they're wonderful. Indeed M-7 is a cluster of 80 stars about 800 light years away which means that the light we see right now is the light that left it in 1200 A.D. M-6 likewise has 80 stars in it but it is 1600 light years away which means that the light we see now left it in 400 A.D.

So there you have it, the Moon visits Scorpius on the 26th and humongous Antares on the 27th and on a clear moonless night you can see two clusters of stars many hundreds of light years away. Now you know why Scorpius is my summer favorite. I'm Jack Horkheimer, Keep Looking Up!


How did you like this episode?
Please give us your comments. (Click Here)

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

 

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.


Star Gazer Minute

#04-29 M

7/19/2004 thru 7/25/2004

"The Moon Visits My Favorite Summer
Star And Constellation!"

Horkheimer: Next week you can use the Moon to find my favorite summer star and constellation. Around 9 to 10 face south and you'll see the giant fish hook shaped pattern of stars Scorpius the scorpion with my favorite summer star marking his heart, ruby red Antares, a star 700 times wider than our million mile wide Sun, so huge we could fit 350 million Suns inside it; so gigantic that if we placed one edge of it where our Sun is it would reach out past the orbits of Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars and Jupiter. On Monday the Moon will be parked just to the right of the top of Scorpius and on Tuesday just to the left of super humongous Antares which will be 13 1/2 billion times farther away than our Moon. Keep Looking Up!


How did you like this episode?
Please give us your comments. (Click Here)

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

 

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.

 


Don't miss the cartoon version of
'STAR GAZER' in each monthly issue of




 
* This week's Sky At A Glance and Planet Roundup from Sky & Telescope.

This week's Sky At A Glance displays current week only.


Starry Night Deluxe was used to produce this episode of Star Gazer




STAR GAZER
THE INTERNATIONAL EDITION



STAR GAZER is seen nationally on most PBS stations. There is a five minute and a one minute version available each week. If it is not currently on your PBS station we suggest you contact your local PBS programming director and let them know it is available free to all PBS stations. You may take STAR GAZER off satellite for personal use, classroom use, astronomy club use, etc. without written permission.

Satellite feed info:

GE 3 - PBS Transponder 512 - Digital Only!

Friday 6/18/04 - 1800-1830 Eastern Time 4 Shows

Half Hour Feed - 4 shows


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE for $16.00 plus $6.00 shipping (within the U.S). Please send a VISA, MasterCard, check, money order or an official school purchase order to the address below:

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators

Lorain County JVS NASA CORE / 15181 Route 58 South / 440/775-1400 / FAX 440/775-1460 / nasaco@leeca.org / http://core.nasa.gov



Notice : These are working drafts of the scripts for STAR GAZER.
Changes may well be made as production requires.


 

STAR GAZER

Episode #04-30 / 1390th Show
To Be Aired : Monday 7/26/2004 through Sunday 8/1/2004

"How To Find The Heart Of The Scorpion
And The Heart of Our Galaxy With
A Cosmic Bow And Arrow"

Horkheimer: Greetings greetings, fellow star gazers. If you go out any moonless night, any August you will see an ancient constellation pointing the way to the hearts of two cosmic wonders. Let me show you. O.K., we've got our skies set up for mid evening around 10 p.m. in early August or just after sunset late August, facing south where you will see almost everyone's two favorite star patterns of summer. The constellation which looks like a fish hook or the capital letter 'j', Scorpius, the Scorpion and directly behind it several bright stars which if connected by lines look like a tea pot.

Now Scorpius is officially called a constellation but the teapot is not. It is called an asterism, which means that it is a small pattern of stars within a constellation. And the constellation to which the teapot belongs is a very large pattern of stars named thousands of years ago for a mythical creature called a centaur, a creature which was half man and half horse. Now this particular centaur was named Sagittarius and was known to be a great master with the bow and arrow, a centaur archer. His bow is marked by 2 stars of the teapot's lid and the star at the bottom of the spout. The arrow starts at the top star in the handle with its tip marked by the star at the tip of the spout.

And you can see that it is aimed at the red star which marks the heart of the scorpion, Antares, which is a giant star 700 times as wide as our Sun. But on clear moonless nights far from city lights you'll also see that the tip of Sagittarius' arrow is embedded in the widest and densest part of the great ribbon of light called the Milky Way which stretches all the way from the southern horizon up to the zenith and back down to the northeast horizon. In fact if you look more closely at Sagittarius and Scorpius you will see that most of the Teapot and the bottom half of Scorpius are embedded in the Milky Way.

And if you take a pair of binoculars and look here or anywhere along the Milky Way you will see that it is made up of millions of pin points of light. Each one of which is a distant star. And which along with our Sun all belong to a great cosmic spiral family of 200 billion stars we call a galaxy, the Milky Way Galaxy. Our Sun is located about 2/3rds of the way out from the center so when we look at Sagittarius and Scorpius the reason the Milky Way appears thickest and widest here is because the bulging center of our galaxy lies in this direction. In fact the tip of Sagittarius' arrow is pointed directly at it as well as at Antares. So find these two cosmic wonders with the help of an ancient archer. I'm Jack Horkheimer, Keep Looking Up!

How did you like this episode?
Please give us your comments. (Click Here)

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

 

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.


Star Gazer Minute

#04-30 M

7/26/2004 thru 8/1/2004

"How To Find The Heart Of The Scorpion
And The Heart of Our Galaxy With
A Cosmic Bow And Arrow"

Horkheimer: On any moonless night in August you can see an ancient archer's arrow aimed at two cosmic wonders. Look south for the fish hook shaped constellation Scorpius and directly behind it the teapot portion of Sagittarius. Sagittarius was a mythical creature half man and half horse, a master archer whose bow and arrow are marked by the front half of the teapot. The tip of his arrow points at both Antares the giant red heart star of Scorpius and also at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy, which is the family of 200 billion stars to which we and our Sun belong. The Milky Way is widest in Sagittarius and Scorpius because the great bulging central hub of our galaxy is in this direction. Keep Looking Up!

How did you like this episode?
Please give us your comments. (Click Here)

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here

"Jack Horkheimer : Star Gazer" is underwritten by a grant from Meade Instruments, the world's largest manufacturer of telescopes for amateur astronomers. Meade telescopes automatically locate 1000's of celestial wonders at the push of a button. It's astronomy made simple.

 


Don't miss the cartoon version of
'STAR GAZER' in each monthly issue of


* This week's Sky At A Glance and Planet Roundup from Sky & Telescope.
This week's Sky At A Glance displays current week only


Starry Night Deluxe was used to produce this episode of Star Gazer


[SmilinJack]Return to the [STAR GAZER Main Page]