WPBT2's Star Gazers

Episode #14-06 "The False Dusk and the Moon Finds Four Fabulous Planets"
Air Dates February 10, 2014 - February 16, 2014



FIVE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
MARLENE: HEY THERE STAR GAZERS, I'M MARLENE HIDALGO, SCIENCE TEACHER FROM MIAMI FLORIDA. WE'RE HERE TO TALK ABOUT THE FALSE DUSK OF OMAR KHAYYAM.

DEAN: I'M DEAN REGAS, ASTRONOMER FROM THE CINCINNATI OBSERVATORY. NEXT WEEK YOU'LL BE ABLE TO SEE THE FALSE DUSK BECAUSE THE MOON WILL BE OUT OF THE NIGHT SKY AND OUT OF THE WAY.

JAMES: AND I'M JAMES ALBURY DIRECTOR OF THE KIKA SILVA PLA PLANETARIUM IN GAINESVILLE FLORIDA. WE'RE GOING TO SHOW YOU HOW TO USE THAT OUT-OF-THE-WAY MOON TO FIND FOUR PLANETS.

MARLENE: LET'S GET STARTED.

STOP DROP

DEAN: WE'RE FACING WEST AFTER IT GETS DARK. YOU MUST HAVE A DARK SKY, FREE OF CITY LIGHTS, TO SEE THIS FALSE DUSK. A GOOD TEST FOR YOUR SKY IS WHETHER YOU CAN SEE THE MILKY WAY. IT WILL START AT THE HORIZON IN THE NORTHWEST, PASS HIGH OVERHEAD AND THEN DROP DOWN AND HIT THE HORIZON AGAIN IN THE SOUTHEAST.

MARLENE: IF YOU CAN'T SEE THE MILKY WAY, ASSUMING IT'S CLEAR AND CLOUD-FREE, MY SUGGESTION IS TO GET IN YOUR CAR AND GO FIND SOME DARK. YOU MAY HAVE TO DRIVE A GOOD DISTANCE BUT BELIEVE ME IT WILL BE WORTH IT.

JAMES: MANY PEOPLE DONT KNOW WHAT A GOOD DARK SKY LOOKS LIKE BECAUSE THEY HAVE NEVER SEEN ONE. MOST PEOPLE IN THE U.S. LIVE IN A FAIRLY URBANIZED, THAT IS, WELL LIT, AREA. LET'S TAKE A QUICK LOOK AT A SATELLITE VIEW OF NORTH AMERICA AT NIGHT.

MARLENE: WOW, I HADN'T REALIZED THERE WAS THAT MUCH WASTED LIGHT BEING SPRAYED OUT IN TO THE SKY.

DEAN: YEAH, JUST THINK OF HOW MANY POWER PLANTS IT TAKES TO PRODUCE THAT MUCH WASTED LIGHT. IT ISN'T DOING ANYBODY ANY GOOD ON THE GROUND.

STOP

JAMES: LET'S SAY YOU CAN SEE THE MILKY WAY. THEN JUST TAKE YOUR TIME AND LET YOUR EYES GET USED TO THE DARK.  TURN OFF THE FLASH LIGHTS, THE HEADLIGHTS, THE PHONE SCREENS AND JUST SOAK UP SOME DARK.

DEAN: FACING WEST AFTER IT GETS DARK YOU MAY SEE A RATHER RARE SKY PHENOMENON. STARTING AT THE HORIZON AND EXTENDING ABOUT HALF WAY UP IN THE SKY LOOK FOR A FAINT ROUNDED PYRAMID OF LIGHT. HIGHER IN THE WEST YOU SHOULD SEE THE PLEIADES. THE FALSE DUSK DOESNT EXTEND THIS HIGH UP SO CONCENTRATE YOUR SEARCH BELOW THE PLEIADES.

MARLENE: IT'S ALSO CALLED THE ZODIACAL LIGHT AND IT'S THE RESULT OF SUNLIGHT REFLECTING OFF OF DUST PARTICLES THAT LIE IN THE PLANE OF THE ORBITS OF THE PLANETS. IT IS VISIBLE EVERY NIGHT THROUGHOUT THE YEAR FROM A DARK LOCATION BUT IN THE SPRING AND THE FALL IT'S AT ITS BEST...

JAMES: BECAUSE IT'S STRAIGHT UP FROM THE HORIZON. DURING SUMMER AND WINTER THE ZODIACAL LIGHT LIES AT AN ANGLE AND DOESN'T REACH SO HIGH.

STOP

DEAN: O.K. WE'VE ESTABLISHED THAT THIS 'FALSE DUSK' IS A NEAT THING TO SEE BUT MOST OF OUR STAR GAZERS LIVE IN AREAS WHERE THEY JUST CAN'T SEE IT. WE'VE GOT TO DO BETTER.

MARLENE: O.K. LET'S FOCUS ON THE PLANETS. THE NEXT FEW WEEKS GIVE US A RARE OPPORTUNITY TO SEE ALL FIVE PLANETS FROM SUNSET TO THE FOLLOWING SUNRISE.

JAMES: AND THE MOON WILL HELP US SPOT THE DIM ONES.

DEAN: OK, PLANET #1 IS JUPITER. IT'LL BE NEARLY OVER HEAD AFTER SUNSET WHEN YOU GO OUT TO LOOK FOR THE FALSE DUSK. SO WE WON'T NEED ANY HELP FROM THE MOON FOR JUPITER.

JAMES: THE OTHERS ARE EARLY MORNING THINGS, SO PLAN ACCORDINGLY. WE'RE LOOKING SOUTH ON THE 19TH AT 6 A.M. AND A WANING MOON WILL BE JUST TO THE RIGHT OF MARS. THE NEXT DAY THE 20TH THE MOON WILL BE TO THE LEFT OF MARS.

MARLENE: THE NEXT DAY THE 21ST THE MOON WILL BE TO THE RIGHT OF SATURN AND THEN THE FOLLOWING DAY WILL BE TO THE LEFT OF SATURN AND WILL BE AT LAST QUARTER.

DEAN: LET'S SKIP A FEW DAYS AND LOOK SOUTHEAST ON THE MORNING OF FEB. 25TH AND A REALLY SKINNY MOON WILL BE JUST TO THE RIGHT OF VENUS. AND SURPRISE, SURPRISE,  ON THE 26TH IT WILL BE TO THE LEFT OF VENUS AND WILL BE EVEN SKINNIER.

MARLENE: THE LAST PLANET WILL BE VERY LOW IN THE PREDAWN SKY BUT THE MOON WILL STILL HELP US FIND MERCURY. GET OUT AROUND 5:40 ON THE MORNING OF FEB 27TH AND A SUPER SKINNY MOON WILL BE JUST A BIT UP AND TO THE RIGHT OF MERCURY. THE FOLLOWING MORNING MERCURY WILL BE A BIT HIGHER AT THE SAME TIME BUT THE MOON WILL BE SO CLOSE TO THE SUN THAT IT WILL  PROBABLY BE A NO-SHOW.

JAMES: SO TO SEE THE FALSE DUSK

DEAN: AND ALL FIVE PLANETS

ALL: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

Episode #14-06 "The False Dusk and the Moon Finds Four Fabulous Planets"
Air Dates February 10, 2014 - February 16, 2014



ONE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
MARLENE: WE'RE HERE TO TALK ABOUT THE FALSE DUSK OF OMAR KHAYYAM.

DEAN: YOU CAN SEE THE 'FALSE DUSK' BECAUSE THE MOON WILL BE OUT OF THE WAY. AND YOU CAN USE THAT OUT-OF-THE-WAY MOON TO FIND FOUR PLANETS.

STOP DROP

DEAN: WE'RE FACING WEST AFTER DARK AND YOU MUST HAVE A DARK SKY TO SEE THIS FALSE DUSK. STARTING AT THE HORIZON AND EXTENDING ABOUT HALF WAY UP IN THE SKY LOOK FOR A FAINT ROUNDED PYRAMID OF LIGHT.

MARLENE:  LOOKING SOUTH ON THE 19TH AT 6 A.M. WE'LL SEE THE MOON TO THE RIGHT OF MARS. THE NEXT DAY IT WILL BE TO THE LEFT.

DEAN: ON THE 21ST AND THE 22ND THE MOON WILL BRACKET SATURN.

MARLENE: THEN LOOK SOUTHEAST ON THE MORNINGS OF FEB. 25TH AND 26TH AND THE MOON WILL BRACKET VENUS.

DEAN:  AROUND 5:30 ON THE MORNING OF FEB 27TH A SUPER SKINNY MOON WILL BE UP AND TO THE RIGHT OF MERCURY.

MARLENE: SO TO SEE THE FALSE DUSK

DEAN: AND SOME PLANETS

ALL: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

Star Gazers Home Page Back to WPBT2.org Miami Science Museum Kika Silva Pla Planetarium | Santa Fe College The Cincinnati Observatory Support Star Gazes with your donation