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Multiple Moons on View at Santa Monica College Planetarium Next Month  
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By Lookout Staff

April 28, 2017 -- If moons excite your curiosity, the Santa Monica College planetarium will showcase not only the early rising gibbous moon, but all four moons circling Jupiter next month.

The May 5 show kicks off a month of telescope viewing sessions and feature shows on Friday evenings John Drescher Planetarium, as well as our popular Night Sky Show.

Next month's events kick off next Friday with the Special Observing Event: “Gibbous Moon and Jupiter in the Eyepiece!”

The event provides a view of the 10-day-old waxing gibbous Moon, which is located in the sky relatively far from the sun and rises during the hours between noon and sunset.

The gibbous moon features "dramatic shadowing along the terminator -- the transition from lunar night to day -- and terraced craters and fault-wrinkled ancient basaltic lava," planetarium officials said.

Jupiter's Galilean Moons
Jupiter's Galilean Moons (Image courtesy of NASA)

The event also offers a look at "the largest planet, mighty Jupiter, and its main equatorial cloud bands and all four of its Galilean moons," organizers said.

On May 12, the planetarium offers another “Summer Star Party Planner” that provides tips on where and when to go, and what to bring to be a welcome star party visitor and participant during the warm summer months.

The party planner provides "good opportunities for beginners to attend these events without having to deal with winter’s cold and travel hazards."

The May 19 event -- a "NASA Human Spaceflight Update” -- looks at the future of the space flight six years after the shuttle made its final flight.

"Two different commercial spacecraft are in development for ISS 'taxi' duty, but funding has consistently fallen short of requests, so schedules have slipped," organizers said.

"Meanwhile, NASA’s Orion deep-space exploration capsule has a murky future and an uncertain first flight date with an ill-defined mission," organizer said.
"Will 'Journey to Mars' remain the NASA mantra, or is a return to the Moon in the offing?"

The John Drescher Planetarium, which features a Digistar projection system, is located near the elevators on the second floor of Drescher Hall, 1900 Pico Boulevard.

Tickets are available at the door and cost $11 ($9 seniors and children) for the evening’s scheduled “double bill," or $6 ($5 seniors age 60 and older and children age 12 and under) for a single show or telescope-viewing session.

For more information call (310) 434-3005 or visit www.smc.edu/planetarium. All shows are subject to change or cancellation without notice.


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