WPBT2's Star Gazers

Episode #14-36 "Super Sights on Autum Nights"
Air Dates September 8, 2014 - September 14, 2014


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.  THIS WEEK, WE'LL BE YOUR GUIDES TO AUTUMN SKIES.

JAMES: THIS IS THAT TIME OF YEAR WHEN ACROSS THE MIDDLE AND NORTHERN LATITUDES OF THE U.S., A STRANGE AND WONDERFUL PHENOMENON OCCURS. YOU SEE EVEN THOUGH THE DAYS AND NIGHTS HAVE BEEN GETTING CHILLIER AND CHILLIER AND IN SOME PLACES THE FIRST FROST MAY HAVE OCCURRED, NEVERTHELESS, OUT OF NOWHERE A FEW UNSEASONABLY WARM GOLDEN DAYS OCCUR.

DEAN: WHEN I WAS A KID I ALWAYS LOOKED FORWARD TO THIS LAST ECHO OF SUMMER, WHICH SEEMED TO BE A MINIATURE SEASON OUT OF TIME AND PLACE. INDEED, IT ALWAYS SEEMED LIKE SUMMER'S LAST HURRAH, ITS LAST ATTEMPT TO REMIND EVERYONE OF ITS WONDER BY SNEAKING INTO THE COLD DAYS OF AUTUMN AND BIDDING A FINAL FAREWELL. AND JUST AS SUMMER SEEMS TO HAVE A DIFFICULT TIME LEAVING, SO TOO DO SOME OF THE STARS AND PLANETS WHICH DOMINATED SUMMER NIGHTS. LET'S SHOW YOU.

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JAMES: WE'VE GOT OUR SKIES SET UP FOR ANY NIGHT THE NEXT FEW WEEKS ABOUT AN HOUR AFTER SUNSET, YOUR LOCAL TIME. AND IF YOU LOOK ALMOST OVERHEAD YOU'LL SEE 3 BRILLIANT STARS WHICH IF WE DRAW LINES BETWEEN THEM WOULD CREATE A GIANT TRIANGLE. A TRIANGLE TRADITIONALLY CALLED THE SUMMER TRIANGLE AND WHICH STRANGELY, IS STILL VERY HIGH IN THE HEAVENS AFTER SUNSET THROUGHOUT THE FALL.

DEAN: ITS BRIGHTEST STAR NAMED VEGA, BELONGS TO THE TINY CONSTELLATION LYRA THE HARP. ITS NEXT BRIGHTEST IS ALTAIR IN THE CONSTELLATION AQUILA THE EAGLE. AND THE THIRD BRIGHTEST, IS DENEB WHICH MARKS THE TAIL OF CYGNUS THE SWAN.

JAMES: NOW ALTHOUGH I SHOULDN'T PLAY FAVORITES MY FAVORITE IS THE BRIGHTEST, VEGA, THE 5TH BRIGHTEST STAR WE CAN SEE FROM EARTH. IT GLISTENS A CRISP SHARP BLUE WHITE WHICH TELLS US THAT IT IS A MUCH, MUCH HOTTER STAR THAN OUR OWN YELLOW-ORANGE SUN.

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DEAN ON SKYBOARD

DEAN: COMPARED TO OUR SUN'S SURFACE TEMPERATURE OF 10,000 DEGREES FAHRENHEIT, VEGA BURNS A FIERCE 17,000 DEGREES. AND WHILE OUR SUN IS JUST A LITTLE UNDER 1 MILLION MILES IN DIAMETER, VEGA IS ALMOST 3 MILLION MILES WIDE.  IF WE COULD PLACE OUR SUN AND VEGA SIDE BY SIDE, VEGA WOULD BE 60 TIMES BRIGHTER.

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JAMES: BUT THE THING I REALLY LIKE TO THINK ABOUT WHEN I GAZE UP AT VEGA ON THESE CRISP AUTUMN NIGHTS IS THAT OUR SUN AND ALL ITS PLANETS, INCLUDING OUR EARTH, ARE RACING HEAD-ON TOWARD VEGA AT THE INCREDIBLE SPEED OF 12 MILES PER SECOND, THAT'S OVER 43,000 MILES PER HOUR WHICH MEANS THAT EVERY YEAR WE GET ALMOST 400 MILLION MILES CLOSER. EVEN THOUGH VEGA IS ONLY 27 LIGHT YEARS AWAY, NEVERTHELESS AT THIS SPEED IT WOULD TAKE OUR SUN ALMOST HALF A BILLION YEARS TO REACH IT.

DEAN: ASTRONOMERS CALL THIS POINT IN SPACE TOWARD WHICH WE ARE RUSHING "THE APEX OF THE SUN'S WAY". AND IF YOU LOOK LOW IN THE WEST YOU'LL SEE TWO OF OUR FELLOW TRAVELERS ON THIS JOURNEY TOWARD VEGA. SATURN AND MARS ARE STILL VISIBLE IN THE EARLY EVENING SKY BUT NOT FOR LONG. WE'LL BE LOSING SATURN SOON BUT MARS WILL HANG ON LOW IN THE WEST FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR.

JAMES: AND BE SURE TO CATCH MARS' RENDEZVOUS WITH ANTARES AT THE END OF SEPTEMBER AND ESPECIALLY THE NIGHT OF SEPT. 29 WHEN ANTARES, MARS AND A CRESCENT MOON LINE UP IN A CLOSE PASS.

DEAN: WHILE BEFORE DAWN, JUPITER IS THE SUPER BRIGHT LIGHT YOU'LL SEE IN THE EAST. ON THE MORNINGS OF SEPTEMBER 18, 19 AND 20 GET UP AND WATCH A WANING CRESCENT MOON PASS CLOSE BY JUPITER.

JAMES: SEPT. 18TH A 24 DAY OLD CRESCENT MOON IS ABOVE JUPITER,

DEAN: A 25 DAY OLD MOON WILL BE EVEN CLOSER ON THE 19TH

JAMES: AND A SKINNIER 26 DAY OLD MOON WILL BE BELOW JUPITER ON THE 20TH.

DEAN: AND WHILE YOU'RE LOOKING AT JUPITER AND THE MOON, LOOK WHO IS SLOWLY RISING BACK INTO THE MORNING SKY, THE BIG DIPPER AND LEO THE LION.

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JAMES: SO THE SUMMER TRIANGLE IS STILL HANGING ON IN THE SKIES OF AUTUMN. ALTAIR, DENEB AND THE STAR WE'RE ALL HEADED FOR, VEGA. SO SOME NIGHT THIS MONTH, GO OUT JUST AFTER SUNSET, LOOK ALMOST OVERHEAD, FOCUS ON VEGA AND IF YOU HAVE A VIVID IMAGINATION, LET YOUR SPIRIT SOAR AND YOU MIGHT ALMOST FEEL OUR TINY EARTH HURTLING THROUGH SPACE TOWARD THIS MAGNIFICENT STAR, "THE APEX OF THE SUN'S WAY".

DEAN: WHAT A WONDERFUL VENTURE AWAITS YOU THESE AUTUMN NIGHTS IF YOU SIMPLY REMEMBER TO

BOTH: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

Episode #14-36 "Super Sights on Autum Nights"
Air Dates September 8, 2014 - September 14, 2014


ONE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
DEAN: EVEN THOUGH WE'RE WELL INTO AUTUMN THERE'S STILL A BIT OF SUMMER HANGING AROUND.

JAMES: THIS WEEK, WE WILL BE YOUR GUIDES TO AUTUMN SKIES. LET'S SHOW YOU.

STOP DROP

DEAN: JUST LOOK OVERHEAD AND YOU CAN SEE THREE BRILLIANT STARS WHICH WE CALL THE SUMMER TRIANGLE BUT WHICH IS STILL VERY HIGH IN THE EARLY EVENING THROUGHOUT FALL.

JAMES: ITS BRIGHTEST STAR VEGA, 3 TIMES THE DIAMETER OF OUR OWN SUN, IS MY FAVORITE BECAUSE OUR SUN AND ALL ITS PLANETS, INCLUDING OUR EARTH, ARE RACING HEAD-ON TOWARD VEGA AT THE INCREDIBLE SPEED OF 43,000 MILES PER HOUR WHICH MEANS THAT EVERY YEAR WE GET 400 MILLION MILES CLOSER.

DEAN: ASTRONOMERS CALL THIS POINT IN SPACE TOWARDS WHICH WE'RE RUSHING, "THE APEX OF THE SUN'S WAY". AND IF YOU LOOK LOW IN THE WEST YOU'LL SEE TWO OF OUR FELLOW TRAVELERS ON THIS JOURNEY TOWARD VEGA. SATURN AND MARS ARE STILL VISIBLE IN THE EARLY EVENING SKY.

JAMES: SO ENJOY AUTUMN NIGHTS AND REMEMBER TO

BOTH: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

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