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. Visit http://www.pbs.org/stationfinder/index.html for help in locating your local PBS station. 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!

OneHour Feed STAH 909
Friday February 19, 2010, 1100-1200/SD06
Includes episodes 1009, 1010, 1011, 1012, 1013


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE (Contact us for current price)

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators (CORE)
Lorain County JVS-CORE
15181 Route 58 South
Oberlin, OH 44074

Phone: (440) 775-1400
Fax: (440) 775-1460
E-mail: NASA_order@lcjvs.net
http://www.nasa.gov/education/core

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

"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

 

 
 

STAR GAZER 5 MINUTE

Episode # 10-09 / 1682nd Show
To Be Aired : Monday 3/1/2010 through
Sunday 3/7/2010

"Fun Facts And Things To Do
On The First Day Of Spring"

Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. This year the first moment of spring officially arrives at 1:32 p.m. Eastern time or your local equivalent, on Saturday March 20th because at that precise moment our Sun will lie smack dab on the celestial equator which officially marks the first moment of spring for the northern hemisphere. So happy spring to everybody above the equator. But if we could go back in time to just before the American Revolution I'd also wish you Happy New Year! Let me explain.

O.K., if someone asked you why is spring called spring? Would you have the right answer? Well simply put we use the word spring because it is an abbreviation for the two phrases "spring of the leaf" and "spring of the year". Now "spring of the leaf" is pretty obvious because at this time of year in the northern hemisphere leaves literally do spring up out of branches and grass and flowers spring up out of the ground. That's why we call spring, spring. But why was this time also called "the spring of the year"? Well before 1752 in England and America the new year actually began close to the first day of spring, on March 25th. Or to put it quite simply the new year sprang up at the same time the leaves and the grass did.

In fact when George Washington and Ben Franklin were young whippersnappers they and all American colonists wished each other happy new year and happy spring on the same day, March 25th until English Parliament declared that beginning in 1752 the new year would no longer begin in March but would be celebrated on January 1st, which was actually a tradition begun by the Romans in 153 b.c.

But lest we forget, the first moment of spring is strictly speaking an astronomical event which marks one of the two days when our Sun lies smack dab on the celestial equator, the other day being the first day of autumn. You see these are the only two days of the year when the Sun rises exactly due east and sets due west and were just two of several astronomical events our ancient ancestors used to help them determine the seasons, and when to plant and harvest various crops. Today the first day of spring barely gets a mention in the media.

But you can see for yourself just how dramatic the arrival of spring is visually if you drive to and from work on a due east / west highway at sunrise and sunset. Because on the first day of spring and autumn the Sun will rise and set directly over the yellow line in the middle of the road. Try it yourself. Starting next week if you go to work around sunrise on a due east / west highway notice just how close the Sun rises to the center of the road each day and then as it gets closer to March 20th watch it rise even closer to the yellow line until on Saturday the 20th it will rise directly over the yellow line. And vice versa, watch the Sun set closer and closer to the yellow line as you drive home on a due west highway. Ladies and gentlemen, start your Sun visors now! Happy spring to you and yours, and Happy New Year, Ben and George. Keep looking up!

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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

Check Out WPBT's Version

 
 
 
 

Star Gazer Minute

#10-09 M

3/1/2010 thru 3/7/2010

"Fun Facts And Things To Do
On The First Day Of Spring"

Horkheimer: This year spring officially begins at 1:32 p.m. Eastern Time Saturday March 20th, which is the precise moment our Sun crosses the celestial equator. But our Sun crosses the celestial equator not only on the first day of spring but also on the first day of autumn, which makes for a strange phenomenon. You see on these two days only the Sun will rise exactly due east and set due west, which means that if you are driving east at sunrise on a due east highway the sun will rise directly over the yellow line in the middle of the road and vice versa will set directly over the yellow line on a due west highway. If it doesn't your highway is not true due east and west. Ladies and gentlemen start your sun visors now. Happy first day of spring on March 20th and keep looking up!

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

 

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


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. Visit http://www.pbs.org/stationfinder/index.html for help in locating your local PBS station. 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!

OneHour Feed STAH 909
Friday February 19, 2010, 1100-1200/SD06
Includes episodes 1009, 1010, 1011, 1012, 1013


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE (Contact us for current price)

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators (CORE)
Lorain County JVS-CORE
15181 Route 58 South
Oberlin, OH 44074

Phone: (440) 775-1400
Fax: (440) 775-1460
E-mail: NASA_order@lcjvs.net
http://www.nasa.gov/education/core

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


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

 

 
 

STAR GAZER

Episode #10-10 /1683rd Show
To Be Aired : Monday 3/08/2010 through Sunday 3/14/2010

"The Moon Visits The Seven Sisters On The First Night Of Spring: A Super Sight In Your Binoculars"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. This Saturday March 20th is the date of the vernal equinox for 2010 or as it is more commonly called, the first day of spring. At which time the hours of daylight will be equal to the hours of night. But this year something special will happen on the first night of spring, something which is almost as beautiful cosmically as spring itself. Indeed on Saturday evening the 20th an exquisite 5 day old crescent Moon, will huddle up next to the tiny star cluster called The Pleiades, The Pleiades. Let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for Friday March 19th which is officially the last night of winter for the northern hemisphere, an hour after sunset. We're facing west and if it's clear out you will see an exquisite 4 day old waxing, that is growing, crescent Moon, complete with earthshine, which will look like a blackish gray almost full Moon nestled within the bright crescent. And if you look just above the Moon about a fist width away you'll see the tiny but exquisite group of stars that has been called The Pleiades for thousands of years. Some people say they look like a little milk dipper, or a cluster of grapes, even a swarm of celestial fireflies. And we have records of them going back as far as the Old Testament.

Now although you need nothing but the naked eye to appreciate their beauty if you look at them through even the cheapest pair of binoculars you will be absolutely awed because you'll see many more than seven stars here and they'll appear much brighter. Make a mental note of where the Moon and The Pleiades are on Friday night the 19th and then 24 hours later go out again and I think the sight will take your breath away because then a 5 day old slightly fatter crescent Moon complete with earth shine will be right next to The Pleiades, a fabulous sight to the naked eye but one which will simply stun you through binoculars!

Our ancestors would have said the Moon is 'visiting' The Pleiades as if the Moon and The Pleiades were really close to each other. But we today know that this is not true and that their visual closeness is simply an optical illusion, and that although the Moon appears to be the bigger celestial object, just the opposite is also true. Indeed our Moon is a cosmic orb only 2,000 miles wide which shines by reflected Sunlight and is only a quarter of a million miles away, which means we see the light that left it less than 2 seconds ago.

Each of The Pleiades however is a giant star each of which makes its own light like our Sun but which are much larger than our almost one million mile wide Sun. Indeed each of The Pleiades is 3 to 10 times as wide as our Sun and so far away that it takes their light over 400 years to reach us. So the light we see now is the light that left them when Galileo first turned his telescope toward the heavens. Wow! So start your first night of spring right with the cosmic light of the Moon and The Pleiades. Keep looking up!

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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

Check Out WPBT's Version

 
 
 
 

Star Gazer Minute

#10-10 M

3/08/2010 thru 3/14/2010

"The Moon Visits The Seven Sisters On The First Night Of Spring: A Super Sight In Your Binoculars"

Horkheimer: On the first night of spring Saturday March 20th an exquisite crescent Moon will huddle up next to the tiny star cluster called The Pleiades, the Seven Sisters. An hour after sunset face west and you won't be able to miss them. The Seven Sisters have been described many ways since the time of the Old Testament, as a tiny dipper, a cluster of grapes, even a swarm of celestial fireflies. But through binoculars you'll see many more than seven stars. Each is a giant star three to 10 times as wide as our million mile wide Sun. And so far away it takes their light over 400 years to reach us, the Moon is so close it takes less than 2 seconds for its light to reach us. So start spring right with cosmic light, of the Moon and the Seven Sisters. Keep looking up!


Please give us your comments. (Click Here)


For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


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. Visit http://www.pbs.org/stationfinder/index.html for help in locating your local PBS station.

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!

OneHour Feed STAH 909
Friday February 19, 2010, 1100-1200/SD06
Includes episodes 1009, 1010, 1011, 1012, 1013


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE (Contact us for current price)

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators (CORE)
Lorain County JVS-CORE
15181 Route 58 South
Oberlin, OH 44074

Phone: (440) 775-1400
Fax: (440) 775-1460
E-mail: NASA_order@lcjvs.net
http://www.nasa.gov/education/core

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


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

 

 
 

STAR GAZER

Episode # 10-11 / 1684th Show

To Be Aired : Monday 3/15/2010 through Sunday 3/21/2010

"Saturn At Its Closest, Biggest And Brightest For The Year
And Mars Still Brighter Than Every Visible Star Except One"

Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. This Sunday my favorite planet, the ringed planet Saturn is officially at opposition and is at its closest, biggest and brightest for all of 2010, which means that Saturn is at its viewing best for the next few weeks. Plus, because Mars was at opposition only 7 weeks ago on January 29, it is still super bright, brighter in fact than any visible star except the brightest of them all, the dog star Sirius, which marks the eye of Orion's bigger dog, Canis Major . And what's even better is that both of these planets are easy to find in early evening. Let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for any night the next two weeks about an hour after sunset facing south where the brightest thing you'll see will be the brightest star Sirius. Up above it you'll see dimmer Procyon which marks the eye of Orion's smaller dog. And up above it, second only to Sirius in brightness, 4,000 mile wide rouge gold Mars. And up above it, much dimmer Castor and Pollux, the two brightest stars of Gemini the twins. Now you'll notice they're almost but not quite in line and I suggest you watch Mars sooner than later because it is rapidly moving away from Earth and by mid May will only be as bright as Pollux. You can use the Moon to find Mars next week because on Wednesday the 24th a 9 day old Moon will be just to Mars' right and on Thursday the 25th will be lined up in a row with Mars, Pollux and Castor.

And now to find my favorite planet, ringed 75,000 mile wide Saturn, go out any night the next few weeks about two hours after sunset, face east and it will be the brightest star like object in this part of the sky. You can use the Moon as a finder on Sunday the 28th when an almost full Moon will be just up to its right. Now whenever a planet is at opposition as Saturn is this Sunday the 21st, it is always at or very near to being at its closest, biggest and brightest for the year. And although we say that a planet is at opposition for only one day, nevertheless for visual purposes it is almost as good for viewing for a couple of weeks before and after opposition. This Sunday on the day of opposition Saturn is directly opposite the Sun and thus visible in the sky all night long. So when the Sun sets in the west Saturn will rise in the east, travel up the sky until it reaches its highest point at midnight and then will slowly descend until it sets in the west just as the Sun rises in the east.

It will still be visible almost all night long for a few weeks after opposition. But if you want to see Saturn at its best, especially through a telescope, look around midnight when it reaches its highest point because all planets are better for viewing when they are at their highest because then we see them through fewer layers of our Earth's turbulent and blurry atmosphere. So get out a small telescope now and enjoy this ringed wonder, which this Sunday will be only 791 million miles away. That's 180 million miles closer than only 6 months ago. Wow! Two planets for your early evening viewing, the lord of the rings and rouge gold Mars. Keep looking up!


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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

Check Out WPBT's Version

 
 
 
 

Star Gazer Minute

#10-11 M

3/15/2010 thru 3/21/2010

"Saturn At Its Closest, Biggest And Brightest For The Year
And Mars Still Brighter Than Every Visible Star Except One"

Horkheimer: This Sunday March 21st ringed 75,000 mile wide Saturn is at its closest, biggest and brightest for the year. Plus 4,000 mile wide Mars is still brighter than any visible star except Sirius. About two hours after sunset face east and Saturn will be the brightest object you'll see. It will be in the sky all night long rising in the east at sunset, at its highest point at midnight and setting at sunrise. And it is 180 million miles closer now than it was six months ago. Face south and you'll see Sirius, Procyon, super bright Mars and Gemini's Castor and Pollux. And on Thursday the 25th the Moon will be lined up in a row with Mars, Castor and Pollux. Wow! Saturn at its best and Mars still super bright. Keep looking up!


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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


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. Visit http://www.pbs.org/stationfinder/index.html for help in locating your local PBS station.

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!

OneHour Feed STAH 909
Friday February 19, 2010, 1100-1200/SD06
Includes episodes 1009, 1010, 1011, 1012, 1013


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE (Contact us for current price)

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators (CORE)
Lorain County JVS-CORE
15181 Route 58 South
Oberlin, OH 44074

Phone: (440) 775-1400
Fax: (440) 775-1460
E-mail: NASA_order@lcjvs.net
http://www.nasa.gov/education/core

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



"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

 

 
 

STAR GAZER

Episode # 10-12 / 1685th Show

To Be Aired : Monday 3/22/2010 through Sunday 3/28/2010

"Leo The Lion Chases Orion / A Sure Sign That Spring Is Here"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. Well it's that time of year again when the night skies almost shout "spring is here" because springtime's Leo the Lion is chasing winter's Orion and replacing him as the major constellation for early evening viewers. Let me show you.

Now most of you know that Orion the hunter is winter's most famous star pattern. Indeed if you go outside in early evening in December you'll see Orion climbing up the eastern skies as a celestial announcement of the imminent arrival of winter. And in the depths of winter, in January and February, Orion reaches his highest point in the heavens in early evening, almost bragging that he is master of the season. But then as March begins things start to change because all throughout March Orion slowly relinquishes his high flying position in early evening and by the beginning of April is tipped over on his side in the southwest almost hanging on to the sky for dear life as if he knows that in just a few weeks he will be gone from evening skies until next winter. And it is this position of Orion in the southwestern heavens in early evening that always tells us that winter is coming to an end.

And although I am always sad to see Orion's bright stars go, nevertheless I'm happy to see a much bigger although less bright constellation take his place almost overhead in early evening, Leo the Lion roaring that he is master now and that he will dominate spring skies. In fact if you go out any night in late March or April in early evening you will see Leo casually reclining almost overhead just as the ancient Egyptians depicted him in a regal sphinx like position, very self assured that winter and Orion will soon be history. His head and forequarters are indicated by a backward question mark with the bright blue white star Regulus marking his heart. His rear is marked by a triangle of stars with Leo's second brightest star Denebola marking his tail.

Now in ancient times lions were often associated with royalty. And in fact Leo's brightest star Regulus means "the little king". But little it is not. Some latest measurements indicate that it is more than one and a half times the diameter of our almost one million mile wide Sun. But because it is a much hotter star it is actually 140 times brighter. And because it is a whopping 80 light years away this means that when we look up at Regulus this spring we see the light that left it 80 years ago. Curiously, however, even though Denebola is twice as close, only 40 light years away, and even though it is much bigger than Regulus, it nevertheless appears dimmer than Regulus. Why? Because it is much cooler, only 20 times brighter than our Sun. Even so if we moved either Denebola or Regulus as close to Earth as our Sun is we'd all be crispy critters.

So welcome in spring the cosmic way. Simply go outside in early evening any night in late March and April look toward the southwest and you'll see Orion the master of winter on his way out and almost overhead, Leo the Lion, the king of spring. Keep looking up!


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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

Check Out WPBT's Version

 
 
 
 

Star Gazer Minute

#10-12 M

3/22/2010 thru 3/28/2010

"Leo The Lion Chases Orion / A Sure Sign That Spring Is Here"

Horkheimer: You can tell spring is here because Leo the Lion is replacing Orion. In early evening look southwest and you'll see winter's super star Orion the Hunter getting ready to exit while almost overhead Leo is roaring that he is the king of spring. Reclining like a giant cosmic sphinx Leo's two brightest stars put our sun to shame. His heart star Regulus is 4 _ times bigger and 140 times brighter, whereas his tail star Denebola is 2 times bigger and 14 times brighter. And think of this, if we replaced our Sun with either Regulus or Denebola we'd all be crispy critters. So welcome back springtime's Leo the Lion, and wave bye-bye to winter's Orion. Keep looking up!


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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


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. Visit http://www.pbs.org/stationfinder/index.html for help in locating your local PBS station.

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!

OneHour Feed STAH 909
Friday February 19, 2010, 1100-1200/SD06
Includes episodes 1009, 1010, 1011, 1012, 1013


Star Gazer is also available from NASA CORE. A videotape of the current month is available from NASA CORE (Contact us for current price)

NASA Central Operation of Resources for Educators (CORE)
Lorain County JVS-CORE
15181 Route 58 South
Oberlin, OH 44074

Phone: (440) 775-1400
Fax: (440) 775-1460
E-mail: NASA_order@lcjvs.net
http://www.nasa.gov/education/core

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



"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

 

 
 

STAR GAZER

Episode # 10-13 / 1686th Show

To Be Aired : Monday 3/29/2010 through Sunday 4/4/2010

"Planets #1 and #2 Pair Up In A Super Close Meeting
This Weekend"

Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. This weekend all of us on the third rock from the Sun will be able to watch the first and second rocks from the Sun pair up in a beautiful close evening encounter which won't happen again until November of 2011. Let me show you!

O.K., we've got our skies set up for this Saturday and Sunday April 3rd and 4th, 45 minutes to one hour after sunset, facing west where you'll be absolutely dazzled by planet #2, 8,000 mile wide Venus, and down to its right, planet #1 the smallest planet, 3,000 mile wide Mercury. Now Venus will be a brilliant white and brighter than any star or planet in the sky. But tiny Mercury will look pinkish although it's not really pink. The reason it looks pink is because it never gets very high above the horizon so we always see it through thicker layers of our Earth's murky atmosphere which gives it this strange coloration. Sometimes when Mercury gets a bit higher above the horizon it loses its pink.

Now this Saturday and Sunday they will be at their closest for this meeting, only 3 degrees apart. And since a full Moon is 1/2 a degree wide this means we could fit only six full Moons between them which is pretty close astronomically speaking. But if you miss this pairing this weekend they'll still be almost as close at the beginning of next week. After which they'll slowly pull away from each other, but will still be only 4 degrees apart Saturday and Sunday April 10th and 11th, which means we could fit 8 full Moons between them instead of 6. They'll appear much brighter through binoculars and because they go through phases just like our Moon.

Through a small telescope Mercury will look like a tiny crescent Moon and Venus will look like a nearly full, gibbous Moon. But remember even though they appear very close to each other visually they are actually very far apart from each other. Now when we talk about planet distances we frequently mean planet distances relative to the Sun. For instance Mercury's average distance from the Sun is 36 million miles, Venus' average distance is 67 million miles and Earth's aver age distance is 93 million miles. But because the planets are always moving in orbit about the Sun their distances from each other constantly change so that while we usually think of Venus as being closer to us than Mercury that's not always true depending on where each one is in its orbit.

This weekend Mercury will actually be closer to us than Venus, only 91 million miles away, about the same distance as our Earth is from the Sun. But Venus will be much farther away in its orbit, a whopping 146 million miles away! Which means they will actually be 55 million miles apart from each other even though they look super close. Wow! So get thee out this weekend and all next week to watch this exquisite pairing of planets #1 and #2. It's a great view from planet #3. Keep looking up!


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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


"Star Gazer" is available with iTunes,
for downloading with Quicktime
and we're now on YouTube

Check Out WPBT's Version

 
 
 
 

Star Gazer Minute

#10-13 M

3/29/2010 thru 4/04/2010

"Planets #1 and #2 Pair Up In A Super Close Meeting
This Weekend"

Horkheimer: This weekend planets #1 and #2 pair up in an evening encounter which won't happen again until November 2011. Saturday and Sunday April 3rd and 4th about an hour after sunset face west and you'll see dazzling planet #2, 8,000 mile wide Venus and down to its right planet #1, 3,000 mile wide Mercury, only three degrees apart from each other, which means we could fit only six full Moons between them. Mercury will look pink to the naked eye, but through a telescope it will look like a tiny crescent Moon. And Venus will look like an almost full moon. And although they'll look super close they'll actually be 55 million miles apart from each other. Wow! So catch planets #1 and #2 from planet #3. Keep looking up!


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

For GRAPHICS for this script (Click) Here


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]