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!

Wednesday 4/20/05 - 1100-1200 Eastern Time 5 Shows

One Hour Feed - 5 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 5 MINUTE

Episode # 05-18 / 1430th Show
To Be Aired : Monday 5/02/2005 through
Sunday 5/08/2005

"Arc To Arcturus, Then Speed On To Spica,
An Easy Way To Find Two Wonderful Stars
By Using the Big Dipper"

Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. You know spring time is always a good time to play the old Big Dipper ­ arc to Arcturus ­ then speed on to Spica game which is simply the easiest way to find two of the most wonderful stars of spring. Let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for the first two weeks of May, 9 to 10 p.m. your local daylight savings time facing due north where you'll see the Big Dipper almost directly above the North Star, its cup pointed down in such a way that if it were filled full of water the water would be pouring out directly on to the ground below. And, as always, if we shoot an arrow through the two end stars in the cup about 5 and a half times the distance between them, we always land smack dab on the North Star. About the easiest way to find it I can imagine.

But aside from using the cup as an easy way to find the North Star we can use its handle to find two even more wonderful stars. Simply draw an imaginary line through the handle of the Big Dipper and extend it in the same curve or arc and you'll arc to the bright star Arcturus. Then if you extend that arc from Arcturus you can speed on to Spica the brightest star of Virgo the Virgin. Once again using the handle and its curve arc to Arcturus then speed on to Spica. Now brighter Arcturus is relatively close, only 35 light years away, which means we actually see the light that left it 35 years ago, whereas Spica is almost 8 times farther away than Arcturus, 260 light years away, which means we see the light that left it 260 years ago.

And while Spica is a whopping 8 times as wide as our Sun, Arcturus is a staggering 21 times as wide. But size isn't everything because even though Arcturus is much, much larger than Spica it is a much, much cooler star with a surface temperature of only 9,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Spica on the other hand has a surface temperature of 46,000 degrees, which actually makes Spica 20 times intrinsically brighter than much bigger Arcturus. The reason Spica doesn't look as bright is because it is so much farther away.

But the really mind boggling thing about these two stars is their incredible speed in relation to our Earth. You see while more distant Spica is flying away from us at a speed of 2000 miles per hour, Arcturus is actually racing toward us at the incredible speed of 12,000 miles per hour, so fast that Arcturus will eventually pass us in several thousand years. In fact in a few hundred thousand years Arcturus will no longer be visible to the naked eye. So before it's too late, see it now. Remember find the Big Dipper first, arc to Arcturus then speed on to Spica. And by the way, as an added treat this year you'll see the super bright biggest planet Jupiter parked right above Spica. Wow! What could be easier and more fun? Keep looking up!

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

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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

#05-18 M

5/02/2005 thru 5/08/2005

"Arc To Arcturus, Then Speed On To Spica,
An Easy Way To Find Two Wonderful Stars
By Using the Big Dipper"

Horkheimer: Did you know you can use the Big Dipper to find two of the most wonderful stars of spring? Look north for the Big Dipper then shoot an arrow through its handle and you'll arc to Arcturus the brightest star of Bootes. Continue that arrow and you'll speed on to Spica the brightest star of Virgo. Spica is 8 times as wide as our Sun but Arcturus is 20 times as wide. And while Spica is flying away from Earth at the speed of 2000 miles per hour, Arcturus is actually racing toward us at the incredible speed of 12,000 miles per hour. So fast that Arcturus will eventually pass us and disappear from sight. So arc to Arcturus then speed on to Spica. 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.


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!

Wednesday 4/20/05 - 1100-1200 Eastern Time 5 Shows

One Hour Feed - 5 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 #05-19 /1431st Show
To Be Aired : Monday 5/09/2005 through Sunday 5/15/2005

"How To Use Planet #4 To Find Planet #7 This Weekend"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers and yes indeed this weekend Saturday and Sunday the 14th and 15th and Monday the 16th you can use tiny planet #4 Mars to find planet #7 Uranus because Mars and Uranus will be huddling together for these three days only one degree apart. But you'll have to get up with the chickens to see them.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for this Saturday May 14th 4 a.m. facing east where about 15 degrees above the horizon, which is about a fist and a half width holding your arm stretched out, you'll see a bright reddish orange light, our old friend tiny 4,000 mile wide Mars which is racing closer to us every day and which will be brighter than even the brightest stars in early November. And up to its left little more than one degree away, which is about 2 full moon widths away, is the third largest planet 32,000 mile wide pale green Uranus 8 times the width of Mars.

But there is one catch. Unless you're far away from city lights under really dark skies you won't be able to see it with the naked eye. So how do you see Uranus? Simple. Get out a pair of binoculars or a small telescope. But don't be fooled by the star Lambda Aquarii which is also close to Mars and is brighter than Uranus. Now Mars is brighter than Uranus because it is only 120 million miles away from us this week whereas Uranus is almost 16 times farther away, almost 2 billion miles beyond. In fact Uranus is not generally considered to be one of the naked eye planets because for thousands of years it was so dim people thought it was just another star. Indeed it wasn't known to be a planet until Sir William Herschel discovered its true nature in 1781 when he saw its disk shape for the first time and which you can see in a small telescope.

But he didn't call it Uranus, he named it Georgium Sidus, George's star after George the Third of England, a monarch who was not terribly popular with the American colonists. Other European astronomers didn't much like British chauvinism so they renamed it Herschel after its discoverer. But finally a bunch of astronomers got together and decided that it should have a mythological name like the other planets. So it was named Uranus for the ancient pre-Zeus Greek god of the heavens and father of the Titans.

And we had no idea what it really looked like until we visited it with our Voyager spacecraft only 20 years ago in January 1986. Now when I was a kid I was taught that Uranus has 5 moons but we now know it has 27. And many of them have their names taken from Shakespeare and Alexander Pope. The two largest Titania and Oberon are from "A Midsummer Night's Dream", Ariel and Miranda from "The Tempest" and Umbriel from "The Rape Of The Lock". For a complete list go to our website. Now on Sunday morning the 15th Mars and Uranus will be slightly closer and on Monday only a little bit farther apart. So if you're like most people and you've never seen the 7th planet live get out your binoculars or a small telescope now because now is your chance! 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

#05-19 M

5/09/2005 thru 5/15/2005

"How To Use Planet #4 To Find Planet #7 This Weekend"

Horkheimer: This weekend you can use planet #4 Mars to find planet #7 Uranus because they'll be huddled together only one degree apart. This Saturday and Sunday around 4 a.m. face east and you'll see reddish- orange 4,000 mile wide Mars. And if you have a pair of binoculars about two full moon widths away, 32,000 mile wide Uranus. You have to use binoculars to see it because while Mars is only 120 million miles away Uranus is almost 2 billion. Sir William Herschel discovered it in 1781 and named it after King George the third. European astronomers didn't like that much so they renamed it for the ancient Greek god of the heavens Uranus. It has 27 moons many of which are named after Shakespearean characters. Use Mars to find it now! 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. 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!

Wednesday 4/20/05 - 1100-1200 Eastern Time 5 Shows

One Hour Feed - 5 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 # 05-20 / 1432nd Show

To Be Aired : Monday 5/16/2005 through Sunday 5/22/2005

Star Gazer's "Star Gazing For Beginners" Part 1


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings beginning star gazers. Getting started star gazing is easy. All you need is clear starry nights, your naked eye and a little information. Mother nature will provide the starry nights, you have the naked eye and I'll provide the information. And before you know it you'll know an awful lot, from the origins, history and mythology of the stars to the super duper science behind them plus best of all you'll learn how to find them! Let's get star-ted.

O.K., just for illustration's sake we've got our skies set up for mid spring, late April, early May, in early evening approximately 8 to 10 p.m. facing due north, at mid latitudes across North America, which is where most North Americans live. We've taken the liberty of showing you the stars the way they'd be seen on a moonless night and away from city lights when there is no bright Moon light or urban sky glow to wipe out the fainter stars. You see if you do your star gazing from lit up urban areas or on nights of bright Moon light the stars will look like this and you'll see only the brightest stars and planets. We want to familiarize you with the stars under dark skies the way our ancestors saw them for thousands of years.

Now directly in front of you due north are seven stars all about the same brightness. Four of them make a small rectangle with three equally spaced stars to their right. Many stars in groups like this seem to form patterns and most North Americans refer to these stars as the Big Dipper. The four stars make a cup and the three stars make a handle. And a dipper with a handle was used for dipping water out of a bucket from a well and was a favorite star pattern of early American pioneers because the Big Dipper is always above the horizon every night of the year across most of North America although in different positions. This was very important because the Big Dipper is the easiest way to find the North Star which was extremely important to pioneers and navigators at night because it always showed them where north was and it still does!

To find the North Star simply take the two stars at the end of the cup, measure the distance between them mentally five and a half times then shoot an arrow through them and you'll land smack dab right on the North Star no matter where the dipper happens to be, any hour of the night, any season of the year. If we set up our skies for early evening mid summer we see that the Big Dipper and all the other stars except the North Star have moved from east to west and the dipper is to the left, that is west, of the North Star. And once again we shoot an arrow through the two stars at the end of the cup five and a half times away and bingo! We land on the North Star. If we set our skies for early evening mid autumn when the Big Dipper is underneath the North Star our arrow trick still works and even in the cold of mid winter when the Big Dipper is to the right, that is east, of the north star, our arrow trick still finds the North Star. So your first step in star gazing is to find the North Star using what else? The Big Dipper. But why you may ask do the stars change their positions with the seasons and in fact every hour of the night? That's our second step in "Star Gazing For Beginners!" 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

#05-20M

5/16/2005 thru 5/22/2005

Star Gazer's "Star Gazing For Beginners" Part 1

Horkheimer: Getting started stargazing is easy. Your first step in stargazing is to find the Big Dipper and the North Star. We've set our skies up for mid spring, early evening facing north. Directly in front of you you'll see four stars which make a cup, and three, which make a handle. Early American pioneers called this the Big Dipper. It was very important to them because they could always use the Big Dipper to find the North Star, which is always due north. To find it yourself measure the distance between the two stars at the end of the cup, shoot an arrow through them five and a half times that distance and bingo! It will always land on the North Star, any hour of the night, any season of the year, in mid summer, mid autumn, even the dead of winter. 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. 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!

Wednesday 4/20/05 - 1100-1200 Eastern Time 5 Shows

One Hour Feed - 5 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 #05-21 / 1433rd Show
To Be Aired : Monday 5/23/2005 through Sunday 5/29/2005

"Three Wonderful Planets And
Several Bright Stars For Your
Memorial Day Weekend"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. If you want to have some extra fun this Memorial Day weekend we have three wonderful planets that are super easy to find, plus several bright stars just begging to be seen let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for this weekend Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights about an hour after sunset facing due west where you'll see several bright stars. Directly above due west will be the star Procyon which marks the eye of Orion's little dog but alas, since Orion is a winter constellation, he has set for the season along with his big dog. Almost directly northwest you'll see another bright star Capella, the brightest star of auriga the charioteer. And above and directly between Capella and Procyon, you'll see Pollux and Castor the two brightest stars of Gemini the Twins, which stand upright on the western horizon every Memorial Day just after sunset. And this year to the left and below Pollux you'll see the planet that has made all the news this past year because we've been visiting it with our Cassini spacecraft, the wonderful ringed planet, 75,000 mile wide Saturn, and if you or a friend have a small telescope please look at Saturn now before it disappears below the horizon because its rings are in one of the best positions possible for viewing. And as an extra added attraction, up to Saturn's, Procyon's, and Pollux and Castor's left forming a great triangle with them, you'll see the brightest star of Leo the Lion, Regulus, which marks Leo's heart.

Then if you simply face 90 degrees to their left due south the brilliant king of the planets 88,000 mile wide Jupiter will be staring you in the face just begging you to get out your telescope which will show you the biggest four of Jupiter's several dozen moons. Plus if that's not enough, to Jupiter's left you'll see Spica the brightest star of Virgo and way up to Jupiter's left the brightest star of Bootes the Herdsman, Arcturus. And do you remember how easy it is to find Arcturus and Spica by using the Big Dipper? Simply turn around and face north, find the Big Dipper, then shoot a curved arrow through its handle and that arrow will arc you to Arcturus and then speed you on to Spica. Of course this weekend as a bonus attraction in their vicinity is super bright Jupiter.

And now for those of you who like to do your viewing in early, early morning especially if you're out camping, face east about 4 a.m. and just above the horizon you'll see reddish orange 4,000 mile wide Mars which is racing toward us every day and will become brighter than any star in the heavens during the first week of this November. And if you need some help finding it, on Monday morning the 30th a last quarter Moon will be parked just to its right and on Tuesday morning the 31st will be parked directly underneath it. How easy to find Mars is that? So get thee out this Memorial Day weekend for three wonderful planets and several wonderful stars. 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

#05-21 M

5/23/2005 thru 5/29/2005

"Three Wonderful Planets And
Several Bright Stars For Your
Memorial Day Weekend"

Horkheimer: This Memorial Day weekend we have three wonderful planets plus several bright stars for you. This weekend just after sunset face west and you'll see Procyon the star which marks the eye of Orion's little dog. To his right the brightest star of Auriga the Charioteer, Capella. And between Capella and Procyon, Pollux and Castor the two brightest stars of Gemini the Twins. And to their left, 75,000 mile wide ringed Saturn. Plus up to their right forming a triangle Leo's brightest star Regulus. Due south you'll see 88,000 mile wide Jupiter, brilliant Arcturus and Virgo's Spica. At 4 a.m. face east and red-orange Mars glows brightly and is joined by a last quarter Moon on both Monday and Tuesday mornings. What a weekend! 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. 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!

Wednesday 4/20/05 - 1100-1200 Eastern Time 5 Shows

One Hour Feed - 5 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 #05-22 / 1434th Show
To Be Aired : Monday 5/30/2005 through Sunday 6/05/2005

"An Absolutely Spectacular Month
For Venus, Saturn, And Mercury"


Horkheimer: Greetings, greetings fellow star gazers. And believe me when I say that this June 2005 will be an absolutely spectacular month for three planets: the brightest of them all Venus, the most beautiful of all, ringed Saturn and the most elusive of them all tiny closest to the Sun Mercury. Let me show you.

O.K., we've got our skies set up for next week Tuesday June 7th facing west northwest 30 to 45 minutes after sunset while there is still some twilight out. And if you have a fairly clear unobstructed horizon, you'll see the planet which is often mistaken for a UFO, Earth's so-called twin because it is the same size 8,000 miles wide, brilliant Venus. And if you have a really clear unobstructed horizon just below Venus to its right you'll see a slender sliver of a very young crescent Moon. Plus if you have a clear flat water horizon without clouds you may even see tiny Mercury peeking just above the horizon. But if you can't see it don't fret because it will be much higher a couple weeks later.

Next look up to Venus' left and you'll see the planet we've been visiting with our Cassini spacecraft, incredible ringed Saturn which still looks spectacular through a small telescope. Now on Wednesday June 8th the crescent Moon will be easier to find because it will have moved up above Venus and will be slightly larger and breathtakingly beautiful. Then the next night Thursday June 9th it will be parked right alongside Saturn. So don't miss next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights to get familiar with Saturn, Venus and Mercury because these are the three planets which are going to absolutely blow you away towards the end of the month. In fact mark the last week of June as the one week of the year you'll have to go out every night just after Sunset to watch an incredible dance and meeting of these three planets.

On Friday night June 24th Saturn will have moved way down in the heavens and Mercury will have moved way up and will join with Venus in a spectacular compact trio. And according to astronomer Fred Schaaf they'll be so close you'll be able to hide them with your little finger tip at arm's length. Then for the next seven nights Venus and Mercury will be less than one degree apart from each other and you can watch Mercury and Venus as they come closer to each other and Saturn as it slowly drifts away from them. Saturday June 25th, Mercury and Venus are closer still and ta da! on Sunday and Monday June 26th and 27th they'll be so close, only one tenth of one degree apart, that the Old Farmer's Almanac claims they may even appear to merge into one star. In fact they won't be this close again until 2070. If you have a pair of binoculars use them please because this is a sight you'll see only twice in a lifetime. And to top it off on the 27th, 28th and 29th they'll still be breathtakingly close. So start your Venus, Saturn, Mercury watch next week on the 7th, 8th and 9th and mark the last of June as the week you must 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

#05-22 M

5/30/2005 thru 6/05/2005

"An Absolutely Spectacular Month
For Venus, Saturn, And Mercury"

Horkheimer: This June three planets will come super close together: Venus, Saturn and Mercury. On Tuesday June 7th during twilight look for Venus, a crescent moon, Mercury if you've got a water horizon and Saturn. On Wednesday the Moon will be even more beautiful above Venus and on Thursday will be parked right along side Saturn. But the last week of June is the best. On the 24th the three planets will be huddled together in a spectacular compact trio. And on Sunday and Monday June 26th and 27th they'll be so close only one tenth of one degree apart that they may even appear to merge into one star. And they won't be this close again until 2070! Start your Venus, Saturn, Mercury watch next week. 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]