WPBT2's Star Gazers

Episode #14-38 "Season Without Giants, or, Time of the Quiet Sky"
Air Dates September 22, 2014 - September 28, 2014


FIVE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
JAMES: GREETINGS, GREETINGS FELLOW 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.  IF YOU'RE ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE WHO LOVES THE CHANGE OF THE SEASONS, HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHETHER THE SKY CHANGES SEASONS TOO?

JAMES: IF SO, STICK WITH US, BECAUSE IN THIS EPISODE WE'LL LET YOU IN ON SOME OF THE SECRETS OF THE SEASONS AND HOW YOU CAN DOUBLE UP YOUR PLEASURE BY NOT ONLY WATCHING THE FACE OF THE EARTH CHANGE SEASON, BUT ALSO BY WATCHING THE FACE OF THE NIGHT SKY CHANGE AS WELL.

DEAN: AND WE'LL GIVE YOU A HEADS UP ABOUT A PLANET - STAR RENDEZVOUS THAT HAPPENS ONLY EVERY OTHER YEAR.

JAMES: LET'S SHOW YOU.

DEAN: YOU SEE IT ALL HAS TO DO WITH OUR EARTH'S YEARLY JOURNEY IN ITS ORBIT AROUND THE SUN. AS OUR EARTH ORBITS THE SUN, YOU'LL SEE A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT PART OF THE STARRY SKY EACH SUCCESSIVE EVENING. 

JAMES: THAT IS IF YOU GO OUTSIDE EVERY NIGHT AFTER SUNSET FOR A YEAR AND LOOK UP. YOU WILL NOTICE THAT THE VARIOUS CONSTELLATIONS SLOWLY BUT STEADILY SHIFT THEIR POSITIONS IN THE HEAVENS A LITTLE BIT WESTWARD EACH NIGHT.

DEAN: A GIVEN STAR PATTERN WILL FIRST APPEAR LOW IN THE EAST AND THEN GRADUALLY BECOME VERY PROMINENT AND HIGH UP IN EARLY EVENING AND THEN WILL CONTINUE THAT SLOW SHIFT WESTWARD AND THEN COMPLETELY DISAPPEAR FROM THE HEAVENS.

JAMES: NOW WHEN ASTRONOMERS TALK ABOUT SKY SEASONS THEY MEAN THAT THE PARTICULAR STAR PATTERNS OR CONSTELLATIONS OF THAT SEASON ARE THOSE THAT ARE HIGH ABOVE THE HORIZON IN EARLY EVENING HOURS DURING A GIVEN SEASON.

DEAN: FOR INSTANCE, IN SUMMER TIME WE KNOW THAT THE GREAT SUMMER TRIANGLE AND THE GIANT SCORPION ARE ALWAYS VERY HIGH AND DOMINANT IN EARLY EVENING SUMMER SKIES. AND IN WINTER, IN EARLY EVENING, THE GIANT ORION AND HIS DOG ALWAYS RIDE HIGH AND DOMINATE WINTER'S LANDSCAPE.

JAMES: SPRINGTIME ALWAYS HAS ITS WONDERFUL LEO THE LION AND THE BIG DIPPER TOWERING OVERHEAD IN EARLY EVENING; BUT THERE IS ONE SEASON WHEN THE SKY BECOMES QUIET... A SEASON WHEN THERE ARE FEWER BRIGHT STARS VISIBLE THAN AT ANY OTHER TIME OF YEAR AND, QUITE APPROPRIATELY I THINK THAT SEASON IS AUTUMN, THE SEASON WHEN THE EARTH TOO IS QUIETING DOWN. A SEASON OF MUTED SUN AND MUTED STARLIGHT, A SEASON WITHOUT CELESTIAL GIANTS; THE SEASON OF THE SOFT SKY.

DEAN: AND IF YOU DO WHAT I'M ABOUT TO SHOW YOU ON AT LEAST ONE EVENING IN AUTUMN EVERY AUTUMN FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, YOU WILL ADD YET ANOTHER DIMENSION TO YOUR ENJOYMENT OF THE EXQUISITE FEELINGS THAT AUTUMN BRINGS. SIMPLY GO OUTSIDE ANY AUTUMN EVENING JUST AFTER THE SUN HAS GONE DOWN AND LOOK FOR THE GIANT SUMMER SCORPION WITH HIS BRIGHT REDDISH-ORANGE HEART-STAR ANTARES AS THEY GET READY TO SET LOW IN THE SOUTHWEST.

JAMES:  THIS YEAR THERE IS AN ADDITIONAL POINT OF LIGHT JUST ABOVE ANTARES. IT'S THE REDDISH-ORANGE PLANET MARS WHICH THE GREEKS NAMED ARES, THEIR GOD OF WAR. IT'S COMMONLY STATED THAT THE HEART OF THE SCORPION, ANTARES WAS NAMED AS THE RIVAL OF ARES, BECAUSE THEY APPEAR SO MUCH ALIKE IN THE SKY.

DEAN: MARS PASSES CLOSE TO ANTARES ROUGHLY EVERY TWO YEARS BECAUSE ANTARES LIES JUST SOUTH OF THE PATH OF THE PLANETS. THIS COMING MONDAY SEPTEMBER 29TH BE SURE TO CATCH MARS AND A CRESCENT MOON IN LINE WITH ANTARES. MARS WILL COME BACK TO ALIGNMENT WITH ANTARES IN AUGUST OF 2016 AND NEXT TIME SATURN WILL BE RIGHT THERE TO MAKE IT EVEN BETTER.

JAMES: SO BE SURE TO GET OUT AND WATCH ANTARES, MARS AND THE MOON NEXT WEEK. WATCH ANTARES AND MARS SET AS THE EVENING GOES ALONG. THEN IN THE HOURS BEFORE MIDNIGHT YOU WILL SEE FOR YOURSELF THE SOFTEST OF SKIES WITH A MINIMUM OF BRIGHT STARS, A TIME WHEN YOU'LL BE ABLE TO DELIGHT IN THE EXQUISITE BEAUTY OF THE SEVEN SISTERS RISING.

DEAN: THEN, AROUND MIDNIGHT THE AUTUMN SKIES WILL SLOWLY GIVE WAY TO A PREVIEW OF WINTER AS ORION, THE WINTER GIANT, BOLDLY RISES IN THE SOUTHEAST. HOW FITTING. HOW POETIC THAT THE SKY SEASONS COINCIDENTALLY MATCH OUR EARTH'S AS REGULAR AS CLOCK WORK.

JAMES: YES, EVERY OCTOBER OF YOUR LIFE SUMMER'S SCORPION WILL SET AT SUNSET AND WINTER'S ORION WILL RISE AT MIDNIGHT. AND THE HOURS IN BETWEEN WILL BE THE PALETTES OF A CELESTIAL IMPRESSIONIST.

DEAN: SO GET OUTSIDE UNDER THE HEAVENS SOFTLY AND REMEMBER TO

BOTH: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

Episode #14-38 "Season Without Giants, or, Time of the Quiet Sky"
Air Dates September 22, 2014 - September 28, 2014


ONE MINUTE EPISODE SCRIPT
DEAN: HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHETHER THE SKY CHANGES AS THE EARTH GOES THROUGH THE SEASONS?

JAMES: IF SO, STICK WITH US, WE'LL LET YOU IN ON SOME OF THE SECRETS OF THE SEASONS OF THE NIGHT SKY. LET'S SHOW YOU.

STOP AND DROP

DEAN: AS EARTH ORBITS THE SUN, YOU'LL SEE A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT PART OF THE SKY EACH SUCCESSIVE EVENING. 

JAMES: IN SUMMER  WE KNOW THAT THE SUMMER TRIANGLE AND THE SCORPION ARE ALWAYS HIGH IN EARLY EVENING. AND IN WINTER, ORION AND HIS DOG ALWAYS RIDE HIGH AND DOMINATE WINTER'S LANDSCAPE.

DEAN:: SPRING HAS ITS LEO THE LION AND THE BIG DIPPER  OVERHEAD IN EARLY EVENING; BUT AUTUMN IS THE ONE SEASON WHEN THERE ARE FEWER BRIGHT STARS VISIBLE THAN AT ANY OTHER TIME OF YEAR, A SEASON OF MUTED SUN AND MUTED STARLIGHT, A SEASON WITHOUT CELESTIAL GIANTS.

JAMES: YES, EVERY OCTOBER SUMMER'S SCORPION WILL SET AT SUNSET AND WINTER'S ORION WILL RISE AT MIDNIGHT. AND THE HOURS IN BETWEEN WILL BE LIKE THE PALETTES OF A CELESTIAL IMPRESSIONIST.

DEAN: SO GET OUTSIDE THIS FALL AND REMEMBER TO

BOTH: KEEP LOOKING UP!

 

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