WPBT2's Star Gazers

Episode #13-23 "Does That Moon Look Super to You?"
Air Dates June 10, 2013 - June 16, 2013



FIVE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
JAMES: HEY THERE STAR GAZERS. I'M JAMES ALBURY, DIRECTOR OF THE KIKA SILVA PLA PLANETARIUM IN GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA.

DEAN: AND I'M DEAN REGAS, ASTRONOMER FOR THE CINCINNATI OBSERVATORY. FELLOW STAR GAZER, MARLENE HIDALGO, WILL JOIN US TO HELP YOU FIND YOUR WAY AROUND THE SKY. WELL JAMES, IT’S ALMOST THAT TIME AGAIN.

JAMES: WHAT TIME IS THAT?

DEAN: TIME FOR THE SUPERMOON PHENOMENON!

JAMES: OH RIGHT. FOR THE PAST FEW YEARS THE MEDIA HAS HYPED THE FACT THAT THE MOON CHANGES ITS DISTANCE FROM US AND THEREFORE ITS SIZE IN THE SKY.

DEAN: AND WHEN YOU COMBINE A FULL MOON ON THE THE NIGHT IT'S CLOSEST TO US FOR THE YEAR,  YOU GET A…

BOTH: SUPERMOON!

DEAN: PEOPLE REALLY SEEM TO LOVE WHEN THIS OCCURS, AND THIS YEAR, IT'LL HAPPEN ON THE NIGHT OF JUNE 22ND.

JAMES: BUT IS A SUPERMOON THAT SUPER TO BEHOLD?

DEAN: LET'S SHOW YOU.

DEAN: OKAY WE HAVE OUR SKY SET FOR JUNE 17TH FACING SOUTH AT 10:30PM. THE MOON HAS LEFT ITS FIRST QUARTER PHASE AND IS NOW A WAXING GIBBOUS.

JAMES: THAT MEANS EACH DAY MORE OF THE LUNAR SURFACE WILL APPEAR LIT TO US ON EARTH - UNTIL THE FULL MOON ON JUNE 22ND.

DEAN: ON JUNE 18TH, SAME TIME OF NIGHT, THE MOON WILL APPEAR BETWEEN TWO BRIGHT STARS. THE ONE ON THE RIGHT WITH THE BLUE-ER TINT IS CALLED SPICA AND IT'S THE BRIGHTEST STAR IN THE CONSTELLATION VIRGO THE MAIDEN.

JAMES: THE THING ON THE LEFT WITH THE YELLOWISH COLOR IS REALLY A PLANET. THE PLANET SATURN. WE'RE STILL IN THE HEART OF SATURN SEASON, SO GET TO A TELESCOPE THAT NIGHT AND BEHOLD THE MAGNIFICENT RINGED PLANET. YOU CAN EVEN SEE ITS MERCURY-SIZED MOON, TITAN NEARBY.

DEAN: MOVING FORWARD IN TIME, ON JUNE 19 THE MOON WILL BE FULLER AND HAVE SHIFTED OVER TO THE LEFT OF SATURN. ON THE 20TH IT'LL BE APPROACHING THE STARS  ZUBENESCHAMALI AND ZUBENELGENUBI. AND ON THE 21ST IT'LL BE ABOVE THE RED HEART OF THE SCORPION, THE SUPERGIANT STAR ANTARES.

JAMES: THAT BRINGS US TO JUNE 22ND, THE NIGHT OF THE SUPERMOON. HMM, DID YOU NOTICE ANY BIG CHANGE IN THE SIZE OF THE MOON BETWEEN JUNE 17TH AND NOW? I DEFINITELY DIDN'T. LET'S LET MARLENE TAKE US IN FOR A CLOSER LOOK AT THIS SO-CALLED SUPERMOON.

MARLENE: HERE'S THE ZOOMED IN VIEW OF THE MOON FROM JUNE 18TH. AT THIS POINT, THE MOON IS ABOUT 229,000 MILES FROM US. LET'S SKIP TWO DAYS AHEAD AND ON JUNE 20TH THE MOON IS GETTING FULLER AND SLIGHTLY CLOSER TO US - AT ABOUT 223,000 MILES. AND ON THE SUPERMOON NIGHT OF JUNE 22ND HERE IS THE FULL MOON AT ONLY 220,500 MILES FROM EARTH. THAT'S HARDLY A SUPER DIFFERENCE! BUT WHAT IF WE COMPARE A SUPERMOON TO A WIMPY MOON - A FULL MOON THAT IS FARTHEST FROM THE EARTH? THE NEXT, WIMPY-EST FULL MOON WILL BE ON JANUARY 15TH,  2014. IF WE PUT THIS WIMPY MOON NEXT TO THIS YEARS SUPERMOON… WELL, NOW THAT'S A NOTICEABLE DIFFERENCE. THE WIMPY MOON IS ALMOST 252,000 MILES AWAY! THAT'S
OVER 31,000 MILES FARTHER THAN THE SUPERMOON. THIS MAKES THE DIAMETER OF OUR SUPERMOON APPEAR 14% LARGER THAN THE WIMPY MOON AND, IN TOTAL, MAKES THE SURFACE AREA 30% LARGER. SO A SUPERMOON IS SIGNIFICANTLY BRIGHTER THAN YOUR AVERAGE FULL MOON. YOU MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO DETECT THE CHANGES DAY TO DAY, BUT THEY ARE REAL!.

DEAN: THE BEST TIME TO SEE THE SUPERMOON IN ALL ITS GLORY, IS JUST AS IT RISES. NOW WE'RE FACING EAST AT 8:30PM ON JUNE 22ND. ITS NOT COMPLETELY DARK OUTSIDE SO YOU MIGHT HAVE TROUBLE FINDING THE MOON RIGHT ON THE HORIZON. BUT AS THE SUN SETS BELOW THE WESTERN HORIZON YOU'LL START TO SEE THE BIGGEST FULL MOON OF THE YEAR CREEP ABOVE THE EASTERN HORIZON.

JAMES: THE MOON ALWAYS LOOKS LARGER TO US WHEN IT'S NEAR THE HORIZON. THAT'S CALLED THE "MOON ILLUSION", BUT… THAT'S A TOPIC FOR ANOTHER SHOW.

DEAN: IF IT'S CLOUDY ON JUNE 22ND, NEVER FEAR. THE VERY NEXT DAY, JUNE 23RD, THE MOON WILL BE ALMOST EXACTLY AS CLOSE AS IT WAS ON JUNE 22ND. IN FACT, IT'LL BE LESS THAN 1% FARTHER, SO YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO TELL THE DIFFERENCE.

JAMES: PLUS THE MOON ON THE EVENING OF JUNE 23RD WILL CLEAR THE HORIZON AT ABOUT 9:30PM - SO THE SKY WILL BE DARKER AND THE MOON WILL BE EASIER TO SPOT. IT WON'T BE THE FULLEST MOON…

DEAN: OR THE SUPER-EST… BUT YOU CAN DEFINITELY GET OUTSIDE AND HOWL AT IT.

BOTH: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

Episode #13-23 "Does That Moon Look Super to You?"
Air Dates June 10, 2013 - June 16, 2013



ONE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
DEAN: SATURDAY JUNE 22 IS THE NEXT SUPERMOON.

JAMES: THAT'S WHEN WE HAVE THE CLOSEST FULL MOON OF THE YEAR.

DEAN: BUT HOW MUCH BIGGER AND BRIGHTER WILL IT LOOK?

JAMES: LET'S SHOW YOU!

DEAN: WE'RE LOOKING SOUTH AFTER SUNSET ON JUNE 18TH. THE WAXING GIBBOUS MOON WILL BE
BETWEEN THE BLUE STAR SPICA AND THE RINGED PLANET SATURN.

JAMES: THE MOON WILL GET FULLER AND FULLER EACH DAY UNTIL THE NIGHT OF JUNE 22. THAT NIGHT THE MOON WILL BE JUST UNDER  221,000 MILES FROM US. COMPARE THAT TO THE FARTHEST FULL MOON, THE WIMPY MOON OF JANUARY 15, 2014, WHICH WILL BE ABOUT 252,000 MILES AWAY.

DEAN: IF WE PUT THE SUPER AND WIMPY MOONS SIDE BY SIDE WE CAN DEFINITELY SEE THE DIFFERENCE. THE SUPERMOON'S DIAMETER APPEARS 14% LARGER AND SHINES SOMEWHAT BRIGHTER THAN A WIMPY MOON.

JAMES: IF YOU MISS IT ON THE 22ND, THE MOON ON THE NIGHT OF JUNE 23RD WILL BE ALMOST AS FULL AND ALMOST AS CLOSE.

DEAN: SO YOU CAN HOWL AT THE MOON AS YOU…

BOTH: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

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