Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Live-Stream Web-Cast: NASA Artemis I to Orbit Moon - Launch Wed. 1:04 a.m.

By Glenn A. Walsh

Reporting for SpaceWatchtower

After several delays, the first launch in NASA's Artemis Space Program is scheduled for very early Wednesday Morning (shortly after Midnight). This test mission, called Artemis I, will include no human crew but will fly beyond the Moon before returning to Earth.

Late Monday afternoon (2022 November 14), N ASA managers gave the final "go" to proceed with the launch count-down. Two technical issues, regarding how the SLS rocket and Orion space capsule came through Hurricane Nicole, were closely examined by engineers before the final "go" was given.

According to a NASA blog news-release:

"Engineers examined detailed analysis of caulk on a seam between an ogive on Orion’s launch abort system and the crew module adapter and potential risks if it were to detach during launch. The mission management team determined there is a low likelihood that if additional material tears off it would pose a critical risk to the flight.

"Technicians also completed replacing a component of an electrical connector on the hydrogen tail service mast umbilical. While swapping the component did not fully fix the issue, engineers have redundant sources of information supplied through the connector."

Live coverage of the launch and other mission highlights will be provided on NASA Television, the NASA Telephone App, and the NASA Internet Web-site. The launch of Artemis I, from the historic Launch Complex 39B at the Kennedy Space Center near Cape Canaveral, Florida, is currently scheduled at the beginning of the first 2-hour launch window, which opens at 1:04 a.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) / 6:04 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) early on Wednesday Morning, 2022 November 16.

Internet Link to NASA-TV located near the end of this blog-post.

Artemis I consists of NASA's new Moon rocket, called the Space Launch System (SLS) and the new Orion space capsule. As a test mission, this mission could end prematurely if major problems are experienced.

We’re going to stress it and test it. We’re going make it do things that we would never do with a crew on it in order to try to make it as safe as possible,” NASA Administrator Bill Nelson told The Associated Press in August.

The primary mission of Artemis I is a proof-of-concept mission. NASA states on their Internet Web-site: “The primary goals for Artemis I are to demonstrate Orion’s systems in a spaceflight environment and ensure a safe re-entry, descent, splashdown, and recovery prior to the first flight with crew on Artemis II.”

The Artemis I mission is scheduled to last 25 days, 11 hours, and 21 minutes. In that amount of time, the Orion spacecraft is expected to travel 1.3 million statute miles / 2.09 kilometers. On the launch pad, the combined Orion space capsule and SLS rocket stand as tall as a 32-story building.

Now, Artemis I is scheduled to return to Earth for a splash-down on Sunday, 2022 December 11. A back-up launch opportunity is now scheduled for Saturday, 2022 November 19.

Major payloads aboard Artemis I include 10 small and low-cost Cube-Sat satellites to be deployed during the mission. Also, mannequins will take the place of live crew members in the Orion capsule, including "Captain Moonikin Campos" (named after Arturo Campos, an engineer who played a major role in resolving the emergency that occurred during the Apollo 13 mission), alongside NASA's Snoopy (the famous beagle from the Peanuts comic-strip) and the European Space Agency's Shaun the Sheep. In cooperation with the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the Israel Space Agency (ISA), a Matroshka AstroRad Radiation Experiment (MARE) will take place during the mission, which will measure tissue radiation doses aboard Artemis 1 and test the effectiveness of the AstroRad radiation vest.

For 6 days, Artemis I will be in a distant retrograde orbit of the Moon. While at one point this orbit will bring the spacecraft within about 60 statute miles / 96.56 kilometers of the lunar surface, the orbit will also take the spacecraft well beyond the Moon.

The cost of the Artemis I mission is $4 billion. The estimated cost of the Artemis Program up until a possible 2025 lunar landing is $93 billion. This includes cost-over-runs from several years of delays.

The Orion space capsule is designed to hold a maximum of 6 astronauts; but, again, the Artemis I test mission will hold no human crew. Orion is a partially re-usable spacecraft with a Crew Module and an European Service Module. It utilizes solar panels for electrical power, an automated docking system, and glass cockpit interfaces similar to the Boeing 787 Dreamliner jet aircraft.

Orion can be sustained for 21 days while not docked to a space station and can last up to 6 months while docked at a space station. As Artemis I is a test mission and carries no crew, the Orion capsule will actually remain in Outer Space for more than 3 weeks, to test all aspects of the spacecraft as well as all contingencies.

The Space Launch System (SLS), the heaviest rocket ever produced by NASA, will be the vehicle used to lift the Orion capsule from Earth to the Moon. As NASA's successor to the Space Shuttle, the SLS is meant to be NASA's primary rocket for Deep Space missions with astronauts going to the Moon, Mars, Asteroid Belt, and possibly beyond.

Unlike the Space Shuttle, the Orion spacecraft will return to Earth using parachutes and splashdown in an ocean, as did the Apollo Moon missions. The Artemis I Orion capsule, utilizing a heat shield, is scheduled to splashdown in the Pacific Ocean on 2022 December 11 (re-entry speed: 24,500 miles-per-hour / 39,428.928 kilometers-per-hour / Mach 32).

Before astronauts can land on the Moon, a small space station, called the Lunar Gateway, will be placed in orbit around the Moon. The Lunar Gateway Space Station is a cooperative project of NASA, European Space Agency (ESA), Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and Canadian Space Agency (CSA). As the Lunar Gateway Space Station has yet to be built, Artemis I tests will not include space station dockings.

A solar-powered communications hub, the Lunar Gateway Space Station will serve as a transfer station where astronauts from Earth will transfer to a shuttle-craft for the trek to the Moon's surface. The Lunar Gateway Space Station will also be a short-term habitation module and science laboratory, as well as a holding area for rovers and other robots. Last year, NASA awarded a $2.9 billion contract to Elon Musk's SpaceX, to produce a lunar lander spacecraft for the Artemis III mission.

If all goes well with the. Artemis I mission, astronauts will board Artemis II for a loop around the Moon in 2024. And, if that goes well, Artemis III will land astronauts on the Moon, probably near the Moon's South Pole, at the end of 2025 or in 2026, including the first female astronaut and the first astronaut of-color. 

Internet Link to NASA-TV Live Coverage of Artemis I Launch & Mission:

Link >>> https://www.nasa.gov/nasalive

Internet Links to Additional Information ---

Artemis 1 -

Link 1 (NASA) >>> https://www.nasa.gov/specials/artemis-i/ 

Link 2 (NASA - Artemis Blog) >>> https://blogs.nasa.gov/artemis/

Link 3 >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artemis_1

Orion Space Capsule: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orion_(spacecraft) 

Space Launch System (SLS) Rocket: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Launch_System

Lunar Gateway Space Station: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_Gateway 

Related Blog-Posts ---

"UPDATE: Live-Stream: NASA Artemis I to Orbit Moon - Launch Perhaps Nov. 16."

2022 Aug. 28. Update 10: 2022 Nov. 8.

"Public Comments Due May 31: NASA Plans to Explore Moon & Mars." Mon., 2022 May 23.


"Roll-Out Thur.: NASA's New Moon Rocket / Fly Your Name Around Moon on Artemis I." Tue., 2022 March 15.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2022/03/roll-out-nasas-new-moon-rocket-thur-fly.html

Source: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, a project of Friends of the Zeiss          

               Tuesday, 2022 November 15.


                             Like This Post?  Please Share!

           More Astronomy & Science News - SpaceWatchtower Twitter Feed:
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gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Informal Science Educator & Communicator                                                               (For more than 50 years! - Since Monday Morning, 1972 June 12):
Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/weblog/spacewatchtower/gaw/
Electronic Mail: < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >
Project Director, Friends of the Zeiss: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/fotz/
SpaceWatchtower Editor / Author: Link >>> http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/
Formerly Astronomical Observatory Coordinator & Planetarium Lecturer, original Buhl Planetarium & Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), America's fifth major planetarium and Pittsburgh's science & technology museum from 1939 to 1991.
Formerly Trustee, Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, Pittsburgh suburb of Carnegie, Pennsylvania, the fourth of only five libraries where both construction and endowment funded by famous industrialist & philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.
Author of History Web Sites on the Internet --
* Buhl Planetarium, Pittsburgh: Link >>>  http://www.planetarium.cc  Buhl Observatory: Link >>>  http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2016/11/75th-anniversary-americas-5th-public.html
* Adler Planetarium, Chicago: Link >>> http://adlerplanetarium.tripod.com
* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear: Link >>> http://johnbrashear.tripod.com
* Andrew Carnegie & Carnegie Libraries: Link >>> http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc

* Other Walsh-Authored Blog & Web-Sites: Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/gawweb.html

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Laser Pulses Provide Time in New 'Quantum Watch'

                  http://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/sundial/carnpa/libpk/pix/lsw/sundial26lsw.jpg   
Photograph of an Open Armillary Sundial (which tells both time and date) located at the northern tip of Library Park, near the center of the Pittsburgh suburb of Carnegie, Pennsylvania; at the top of Library Hill is the historic Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, the fourth (of only five) Carnegie libraries where both construction and endowment were funded by famous industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. Telling time has come a long way since sundials were in use for determining the time-of-day. Now, a Quantum Watch can tell time using laser pulses.
(Image Source: Friends of the Zeiss; Photographer: Pittsburgh-Area Free-Lance Photographer Lynne S. Walsh) 

By Glenn A. Walsh

Reporting for SpaceWatchtower

A completely new way to tell time has been developed by what scientists call a “Quantum Watch”.

Lead author of the published research and experimental physicist Marta Berholtz describes this as a Quantum Watch rather than a Quantum Clock, because a watch “provides time” while a clock requires keeping track of time. The scientific paper was published in the research journal, Physical Review Research.

Dr. Berholtz conducted this post-doctoral research, after moving to Uppsala University (Uppsala, .Sweden – the oldest university in Sweden), coming from Tartu University (Tartu, Estonia). She conducted the research during the COVID-19 Pandemic, when she had extra time to spend in a laser lab.

Most clocks depend on a mechanical or electronic beat to measure time, measuring the time between two intervals. From the tick of a traditional clock or wristwatch, to the swing of a pendulum in a grandfather clock, time is measured from one event to another event.

When dealing in Quantum Mechanics, traditional time measurement is not possible. In the new Quantum Watch there is no “time zero”. Time is determined by the evolution of a Quantum System of Rydberg Atoms. Rydberg Atoms, atoms where the electrons are in a special excited state, are then measured by laser pulses.

Time is reckoned in a Quantum Watch by determining how long a state of Rydberg Helium Atoms has lived, described as a “time fingerprint” which represents a specific time. Unlike optical atomic clocks which measure time, this is just a new way of detecting time, according to Johan Soderstrom of Uppsala University and co-author of the research paper.

The original experiment was not about trying to find a Quantum Watch. They were simply studying the dynamics of how very short laser bursts affect electrons. It was only after reviewing and analyzing the results where a surprising conclusion was the possibility of a Quantum Watch.

Practical applications for a Quantum Watch are unknown at this time. However, it could be useful in Quantum Computers.

Internet Links to Additional Information ---

More details on the Quantum Watch:

Link 1 >>> https://www.sciencealert.com/scientists-just-discovered-an-entirely-new-way-of-measuring-time

 Link 2 >>> https://www.vice.com/en/article/dy7kyv/scientists-invent-quantum-watch-a-mind-bending-new-way-to-measure-time

 Link 3 >>> https://phys.org/news/2022-10-rydberg-states.html

Source: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, a project of Friends of the Zeiss          

               Sunday, 2022 November 13.


                             Like This Post?  Please Share!

           More Astronomy & Science News - SpaceWatchtower Twitter Feed:
            Link >>> https://twitter.com/spacewatchtower

        Astronomy & Science Links: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/#sciencelinks

                Want to receive SpaceWatchtower blog posts in your in-box ?
                Send request to < spacewatchtower@planetarium.cc >.

gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Informal Science Educator & Communicator                                                               (For more than 50 years! - Since Monday Morning, 1972 June 12):
Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/weblog/spacewatchtower/gaw/
Electronic Mail: < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >
Project Director, Friends of the Zeiss: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/fotz/
SpaceWatchtower Editor / Author: Link >>> http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/
Formerly Astronomical Observatory Coordinator & Planetarium Lecturer, original Buhl Planetarium & Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), America's fifth major planetarium and Pittsburgh's science & technology museum from 1939 to 1991.
Formerly Trustee, Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, Pittsburgh suburb of Carnegie, Pennsylvania, the fourth of only five libraries where both construction and endowment funded by famous industrialist & philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.
Author of History Web Sites on the Internet --
* Buhl Planetarium, Pittsburgh: Link >>>  http://www.planetarium.cc  Buhl Observatory: Link >>>  http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2016/11/75th-anniversary-americas-5th-public.html
* Adler Planetarium, Chicago: Link >>> http://adlerplanetarium.tripod.com
* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear: Link >>> http://johnbrashear.tripod.com
* Andrew Carnegie & Carnegie Libraries: Link >>> http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc

* Other Walsh-Authored Blog & Web-Sites: Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/gawweb.html

 

Friday, November 4, 2022

Total Lunar Eclipse Early Tue. Morning w/ Live-stream Web-casts

       File:Full Eclipse of the Moon as seen in from Irvine, CA, USA (52075715442) (cropped).jpg

Image from the last Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon, which occurred on 2022 May 15; image taken from Irvine, California. (Image Sources: Wikipedia.org, By Sergei Mutovkin from Irvine, California, United States - Full Eclipse of the Moon as seen in from Irvine, CA, USA, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=118047426)

By Glenn A. Walsh

Reporting for SpaceWatchtower

A Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon occurs early Tuesday morning, well visible in North America (including Alaska and Hawaii), parts of northern and eastern Europe, Asia, and Australia, as well as much of South America, Arctic region, Antarctica, and from the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans, weather-permitting. Live-stream web-casts of the event will be available, for areas of the world where the Eclipse is not visible, or where the weather is not amenable to viewing the Eclipse.

A Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon is the only category of Eclipses which is safe to view with the unaided eyes (one-power), binoculars, and a telescope. While binoculars or a telescope can assist in seeing lunar details, a good view of such an Eclipse can be had by just using the unaided eyes.

Of course, a Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon can only be observed, if the Moon has risen at a certain locale, weather-permitting. Near the end of this blog-post is an Internet link to a map(s) showing where such an Eclipse can be observed, and whether the entire Eclipse can be observed, or if only a portion of the Eclipse can be observed. Also, near the end of this blog-post is an Internet link to a U.S.  Naval Observatory web-page, where you can plug-in your location to determine the times of moonrise and moonset.

Live-stream Web-casts of this Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon will be available for observers not in a region where the Eclipse is visible in the sky, or where weather conditions make such an observation impossible (Internet links to these Live-stream Web-casts near the end of this blog-post).

A Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon occurs when the orbit of the Moon brings our natural satellite into the Earth's shadow (shadow caused by the Earth completely blocking light from the Sun). The Earth's shadow, extending into Outer Space from the dark or night side of Earth, is divided into two sections: the dim Penumbra or Penumbral Shadow, which encircles the deeper Umbra or Umbral Shadow.

A Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon always occurs near the time, and including the time, of a Full Moon. The Moon's orbit is slightly tilted, so most months at the Primary Moon Phase of Full Moon, the Moon moves above or below the Earth's shadow, with no Eclipse occurring.

A Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon is when the Earth's deep shadow, or Umbra, completely envelops the Moon. Of course, "Totality" / Total Phase of a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon is the most impressive part of this type of Eclipse, what most people wait to see.

The Partial Phases of a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon, are when a piece of the Moon seems missing, as the Moon moves farther into the Earth's main shadow known as the Umbra, or as the Eclipse is ending and the Moon is further moving out of the Earth's Umbra.

Usually, a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon only occurs once every 2.5 years, approximately, as seen from someplace in the world. The last two happened on 2021 May 26 and on 2022 May 15 / 16.

However, the 2022 November 8 Eclipse will be the last Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon until 2025 March 14. Although, Partial and Penumbral Lunar Eclipses / Eclipses of the Moon will still occur before 2025.

All eclipses come in pairs (a Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun comes a couple weeks before, or after, a Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon), sometimes even in threes. In the current case, a Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun occurred early on the morning of 2022 October 25. An Internet link to the blog-post regarding the October 25 Eclipse is located near the end of this blog-post.

When the Earth's deep shadow, known as the Umbra, falls on only part of the Moon's surface, this is known as a Partial Lunar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Moon. This is more easily visible, if you are in the right location and weather conditions are acceptable.

When the Earth's dim shadow, known as the Penumbra, falls on the Moon, it is called a Penumbral Lunar Eclipse / Penumbral Eclipse of the Moon. Because the Earth's shadow is dim in this case, this type of Eclipse is difficult to discern.

A Penumbral Lunar Eclipse / Penumbral Eclipse of the Moon, and the Penumbral Phases of the Total or Partial Lunar Eclipses / Eclipses of the Moon, are difficult to see, as the Moon moves into or out of the Earth's secondary shadow or Penumbra. In this case, one would not see any chunks or bites taken out of the Moon's disk, as one would see when the Moon moves into the Umbra shadow during the Partial Phases. Instead, if your eyes are very good, you may notice a slight dimming of the light coming from the Moon, as the Moon moves farther into the Penumbral Shadow.

Although no direct sunlight reaches the Moon during the Totality phase of a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon, the Earth's atmosphere refracts the sunlight around our planet allowing a portion of the sunlight to continue to be transmitted to the Moon. However, the refracted light reaching the Moon is primarily in the yellow, orange, and red portions of the electromagnetic spectrum (the Earth's atmosphere filters-out the violet, blue, and green colors), as with orange or red-tinted sunrises and sunsets (during such a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon, a person standing on the side of the Moon facing Earth could see all Earth sunrises and sunsets simultaneously, as they viewed the Earth in a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun --- but, even on the Moon, a person would need to take strong precautions to ensure their eye-sight is not damaged by such a view). Hence, it is orange or red light that is reflected from the Moon back into your eyes during a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon.

Again, particularly during the middle of a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon, the Moon will not disappear from view but can be seen with an orange or reddish tint, what some call "blood red" (this is sometimes referred to as a “Blood Moon”). If the Earth had no atmosphere, likely no sunlight would reach the Moon during a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon, and there would be no "Blood Moon;" the Moon would seem to completely disappear.

Here are the major stages of this Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon –--

Early Tuesday Morning, 2022 November 8 -

[Eastern Standard Time (EST) / Coordinated Universal Time (UTC)]

Note: A Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon is the only type of Eclipse where the times of Eclipse are the same world-wide, when using Coordinated Universal Time. Everyone on the dark or night side of Earth can view, at least a portion of, this type of Eclipse in the sky, weather-permitting.

Penumbral Eclipse Begins: 3:01:52 a.m. EST / 8:01:52 UTC

Partial Eclipse Begins: 4:08:49 a.m. EST / 9:08:49 UTC

Total Eclipse Begins: 5:16:12 a.m. EST / 10:16:12 UTC

Time of Greatest Eclipse: 5:59:11 a.m. EST / 10:59:11 UTC

Primary Phase of Full Moon: 6:02 a.m. EST / 11:02 UTC

Total Eclipse Ends: 6:41:52 a.m. EST / 11:41:52 UTC

Partial Eclipse Ends: 7:49:24 a.m. EST / 12:49:24 UTC

Penumbral Eclipse Ends: 8:56:32 a.m. EST / 13:56:32 UTC

At the time of Greatest Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon on November 8 at 6:02 a.m. EST / 11:02 UTC, the Moon will be 100 per-cent obscured by the Earth's Umbral Shadow. It may appear dark with a reddish or orange tint; some refer to this as a “Blood Moon.” In fact, the Moon's disk actually passes through the axis of Earth's Umbral Shadow, which means this will be a very deep and dark Eclipse.

And, at the time of Greatest Eclipse, the Moon is farther from the Earth than normal. In fact the Moon reaches the monthly point of apogee, in the lunar orbit, 5.8 days after the Eclipse. So, the Moon will appear a wee-bit smaller than it may appear at other times of the month.

During this Eclipse, the Moon is located in the direction of the constellations Aries the Ram and Taurus the Bull. A Full Moon can only lie in front of one or two of three constellations; the third is Cetus the Whale.

The overall duration of the 2022 November 8 Eclipse is predicted to be 5 hours and 54 minutes. The expectation for the duration of --- Totality: 1 hour, 25.7 minutes (one of the longest Total phases possible); both Partial Phases: 2 hours, 15 minutes; and both Penumbral Phases: 2 hours, 14 minutes.

Aristotle Discovers World is Round Due, in Part, to Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon

Civilized society has known that the Earth is not flat, but is round, for about 2500 years. The famous Greek philosopher and academic, Aristotle who lived between 384 and 322 B.C., used a Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon as one demonstration that the Earth is round.

This was documented in a book he published around 350 B.C. As he observed the Earth's shadow pass across the face of the Moon during a Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon, he noticed that the shadow is curved, which is one of three indications he found that the Earth is round.

One of the other two indications were the concept that gravity required a common center for a planetary body such as Earth. He also noticed that different stars were seen from different locations on our planet, and some stars cannot be seen from certain locations.

Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon Saves Christopher Columbus & Crew

On Christopher Columbus' fourth and last voyage to the New World (which he still believed was part of India or Asia) in 1502, he lost all four of his ships due to an epidemic of ship-worms eating holes in the wood planks of his vessels. He had to beach the last two ships on an island now known as Jamaica on 1503 June 25.

While waiting for a relief caravel to arrive from Hispaniola (island now occupied by the Dominican Republic and Haiti), the native Arawak Indians helped the castaways with food and provisions, in exchange for trinkets and other goods from the last two ships. However, after more than six months, the Arawaks got tired of helping the Spaniards, particularly after half the crew mutinied and robbed and murdered several Arawaks. With the Arawaks no longer providing food to the ships' crew, Columbus was now desperate.

From a German almanac carried on voyages by all navigators of this era, Columbus determined that a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon would be visible around moonrise in Jamaica on Thursday, 1504 February 29. Three days before the Eclipse, Columbus told the Arawak Chief that the Christian God was angry with the Arawaks for no longer providing the needs of Columbus' crew, and the God would make his anger known when the rising Full Moon is obliterated; the Moon would appear “inflamed with wrath”, illustrating what could happen to the Arawak people.

As Columbus had predicted, on February 29 the rising Moon appeared in an inflamed and bloody state. The terrified Arawaks immediately came running with provisions and requesting that Columbus intercede on their behalf with the Christian God. The Arawaks promised to cooperate with the ship-wrecked crew, so long as the Moon is returned to the sky in normal state.

Columbus retired to his ship cabin, to confer with the Christian God. He used an hour-glass to time the phases of the Eclipse. Just before the end of the Total Phase of the Eclipse, Columbus announced that the Christian God had pardoned the Arawaks, and the Moon would gradually return to normal, which, of course, did occur. From then on, the Arawaks did keep Columbus' crew well-supplied until the relief ship arrived on 1504 June 29.

In 1889, Mark Twain (a.k.a Samuel Clemens) used a similar ploy in his famous novel, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. To avoid being burned at the stake, main character Hank Morgan claimed the power to take away the Sun, at a time he knew a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun would occur. Hank Morgan said he would return the Sun to normal, in return for his freedom and the position of “perpetual minister and executive to the king.”

However, Mark Twain did not consult an almanac, when writing the story. The date he used for the Eclipse, A.D. 528 June 21, was the first full day of Summer but not the date of any Eclipse. In fact, that date was three days after a Full Moon phase, when no Eclipse is possible.

Two Taurid Meteor Showers

Two Taurid Meteor Showers (South Taurid and North Taurid) may be slightly visible during this Eclipse. Although Lunar Eclipses / Eclipses of the Moon are not usually the best time to see Meteors (as a bright Moon often drowns-out the dimmer Meteors), some Meteors may still be visible, particularly during the time of greatest Eclipse.

The South Taurid Meteor Shower peaks on Saturday, 2022 November 5 at 1:00 p.m. EST /18:00 UTC. The peak of the North Taurid Meteor Shower comes on Saturday, 2022 November 12 at 1:00 p.m. EST /18:00 UTC.

Full Moon of November

The Full Moon of November, in the Northern Hemisphere, is generally known as the Beaver Moon. This was the time when Native Americans set-out beaver traps, before creeks and swamps froze-over, to ensure a good supply of warm furs and pelts for the coming Winter. Although beavers do not hibernate, by the following month the beavers would be in their lodges for the Winter, difficult for hunters to trap.

This beaver fur was its most usable at this time of year, both waterproof and warm. The furs also provided a special oil, used as a hair protector. The beaver was revered by the Americans Indians, spiritually.

The Beaver Moon occurs this year on 2022 November 8 at 6:02 a.m. EST / 11:02 UTC.

While most people consider the Full Moon as the Beaver Moon, the Native Americans actually considered the whole Moon cycle (all four Moon phases) as the Beaver Moon (i.e. the Beaver Month for the 28.5-day lunar cycle). Other researchers believe the Beaver Moon name came from the fact that beavers, themselves, are active building water dams, preparing for Winter.

This month's Full Moon sometimes is also referred to as the Frost or Frosty Moon. And, some Indian tribes referred to the November Full Moon as the Deer-Mating Moon or the Fur-Pelts Moon.

For years when the Harvest Moon occurs in October (when the October Full Moon date is closer to the Autumnal Equinox than the September Full Moon date, which occurs about one-third of the time), the November Full Moon is then also known as the Hunter's Moon. If the November Full Moon occurs before November 7, then it is a Hunter's Moon. However, this was not the case this year.

In the Southern Hemisphere, the Full Moon of November is known as the Corn Moon, Milk Moon, Flower Moon, and Hare Moon.

Daylight Saving Time Ends

Just before this Eclipse occurs, Daylight Saving Time (there is no letter “s” at the end of the word “Saving” in Daylight Saving Time) ends in the majority of the United States, which observe Daylight Saving Time from the second Sunday of March to the first Sunday of November each year. “Summer Time” ended in the United Kingdom and most of Europe the previous weekend, when America's Daylight Saving Time used to end before a change in U.S. Federal law effective beginning in 2007.

Mexico also changed their clocks from Daylight Saving Time to Standard Time last weekend, permanently! On October 26, the Mexican Senate approved a law that abolishes Daylight Saving Time over the entire country. However, northern regions of Mexico, along the American border, are permitted to continue observing Daylight Saving Time, to be consistent with the American time zone across the border. Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, President of Mexico, called Standard Time, "God's time".

Daylight Saving Time ends at 2:00 a.m. Daylight Saving Time, which then becomes 1:00 a.m. Standard Time, on Sunday Morning, 2022 November 6. This is effective in all American states except in two states where Standard Time is observed year-round: Arizona (although tribal nations in Arizona do observe Daylight Saving Time) and Hawaii (which does not consider Daylight Saving Time necessary, due to the state's proximity to the Equator).

The American dates and times of Daylight Saving Time are also effective in most of Canada, except most of the province of Saskatchewan and the Yukon territory which stay on Standard Time all year. Some areas of the provinces of British Columbia and Quebec and Southampton Island (Kilvalliq Region of the territory of Nunavut) also remain on Standard Time year-round.

Mars Closest Approach to Earth & Opposition at End of Month & Beginning of December

The planet Mars will be at its closest approach to Earth, for the last two years and two months, on Wednesday, 2022 November 30 at 9:00 p.m. EST / December 1, 2:00 UTC. Mars will be at a Magnitude of -1.8 with the Martian disk appearing as large as 17.2 seconds-of-arc in diameter, just 4.5 light-minutes away (distance of 0.544 Astronomical Units).

Mars will be in Opposition (with the Earth lying directly between Mars and the Sun - Mars visible all-night-long, approximately local sunset to local sunrise) on Thursday, 2022 December 8 at 1:00 a.m. EST / 6:00 UTC. The Red Planet will appear fairly close to the December Full Moon (Full Moon on Wednesday, 2022 December 7 at 11:08 p.m. EST / December 8, 4:08 UTC).

In fact, the Moon will completely cover the planet Mars, in what astronomers call an Occultation, on Wednesday, 2022 December 7 at 11:00 p.m. EST / December 8 at 4:00 UTC. This Lunar Occultation should be visible, weather-permitting, in most of the United States (except Alaska), Canada, Greenland, northwestern portion of Mexico, Svalbard (archipelago part of Norway), much of Europe, western portion of Russia, and a portion of northern Africa. For other observers, Mars will be in Conjunction with the Full Moon (Mars 0.5 degree south of the Moon).

On Saturday, 2022 November 19, a $4.48 million exhibit on the planet Mars will open at Pittsburgh's Carnegie Science Center. On Saturday, 2022 October 15, a $2.7 million Moonshot Space Museum, regarding robotic missions to the Moon, opened in Pittsburgh.

Internet Links to Determine Where an Eclipse can be Observed ---

Map (NASA): Link >>> https://moon.nasa.gov/news/185/what-you-need-to-know-about-the-lunar-eclipse/

U.S. Naval Observatory Moonrise / Moonset Calculator:

Link >>> https://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/RS_OneDay

Internet Links to Live-stream Web-casts of 2022 Nov. 8 Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon ---

TimeandDate.com: Link >>> https://www.timeanddate.com/live/eclipse-lunar-2022-november-8

Nevada Desert Skies (YouTube): Link >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=scNwWmAOlFs

Kopernik Observatory (YouTube): Link >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05vdJJN5WzM

High Point Scientific (YouTube): Link >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LdBGWLjecAY

Cosmosapiens (YouTube): Link >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hph8JCS2w3c 

Internet Links to Additional Information ---

Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_eclipse

More Information - Eclipse of 2022 November 8 ---

NASA: Link >>> https://moon.nasa.gov/news/185/what-you-need-to-know-about-the-lunar-eclipse/

TimeandDate.com: Link >>> https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/lunar/2022-november-8 

EarthSky.org: Link >>> https://earthsky.org/astronomy-essentials/total-lunar-eclipse-nov8-2022/ 

Wikipedia.org: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/November_2022_lunar_eclipse 

Related Blog Posts ---

"Partial Solar Eclipse Early Tue. Morning, w/ Live-stream Web-casts." Mon., 2022 Oct. 24.

Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun, 2022 Oct. 25.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2022/10/partial-solar-eclipse-early-tue-morning.html

 

"Moonshot Space Museum Opens in Pittsburgh." Thur., 2022 Oct. 20.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2022/10/moonshot-space-museum-opens-in.html

 

"Early Fri. Lunar Eclipse Longest in 1,000 Years." Wed., 2021 Nov. 17.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2021/11/early-fri-lunar-eclipse-longest-in-1000.html

 

"Great American Solar Eclipse Next Monday: Some Ways to See It Safely." Mon., 2017 Aug. 14.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2017/08/great-american-solar-eclipse-next-mon.html

Source: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, a project of Friends of the Zeiss          

               Friday, 2022 November 4.


                             Like This Post?  Please Share!

           More Astronomy & Science News - SpaceWatchtower Twitter Feed:
            Link >>> https://twitter.com/spacewatchtower

        Astronomy & Science Links: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/#sciencelinks

                Want to receive SpaceWatchtower blog posts in your in-box ?
                Send request to < spacewatchtower@planetarium.cc >.

gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Informal Science Educator & Communicator                                                               (For more than 50 years! - Since Monday Morning, 1972 June 12):
Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/weblog/spacewatchtower/gaw/
Electronic Mail: < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >
Project Director, Friends of the Zeiss: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/fotz/
SpaceWatchtower Editor / Author: Link >>> http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/
Formerly Astronomical Observatory Coordinator & Planetarium Lecturer, original Buhl Planetarium & Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), America's fifth major planetarium and Pittsburgh's science & technology museum from 1939 to 1991.
Formerly Trustee, Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, Pittsburgh suburb of Carnegie, Pennsylvania, the fourth of only five libraries where both construction and endowment funded by Andrew Carnegie.
Author of History Web Sites on the Internet --
* Buhl Planetarium, Pittsburgh: Link >>>  http://www.planetarium.cc  Buhl Observatory: Link >>>  http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2016/11/75th-anniversary-americas-5th-public.html
* Adler Planetarium, Chicago: Link >>> http://adlerplanetarium.tripod.com
* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear: Link >>> http://johnbrashear.tripod.com
* Andrew Carnegie & Carnegie Libraries: Link >>> http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc

* Other Walsh-Authored Blog & Web-Sites: Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/gawweb.html

Monday, October 24, 2022

Partial Solar Eclipse Early Tue. Morning, w/ Live-stream Web-casts

http://andrewcarnegie2.tripod.com/SolarEclipseSafetyCanali.GIF
A Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun will be visible (weather-permitting) early Tuesday morning in Europe, Africa, Middle East, and western Asia

NEITHER THIS PARTIAL SOLAR ECLIPSE / PARTIAL ECLIPSE OF THE SUN, NOR ANY PARTIAL PHASE OR ANNULAR PHASE OF ANY SOLAR ECLIPSE / ECLIPSE OF THE SUN, IS SAFE TO LOOK AT DIRECTLY, UNLESS YOU HAVE THE PROPER EQUIPMENT AND PROPER TRAINING TO DO SO SAFELY; OTHERWISE EYE-SIGHT COULD BE DAMAGED PERMANENTLY.

 This graphic shows one way to safely view the partial phases of a Solar Eclipse by building a Solar Pinhole Viewing Box (a.k.a. Pinhole Camera) as shown above. After building this box, you must turn your back to the Sun and allow the light from the Sun to go through the pinhole and shine on a white piece of paper on the other end of the box (NEVER LOOK THROUGH THE PINHOLE AT THE SUN!).
(Graphic Source: Eric G. Canali, former Floor Operations Manager of the original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), America's fifth major planetarium and Pittsburgh's science and technology museum from 1939 to 1991, and Founder of the South Hills Backyard Astronomers amateur astronomy club.)

By Glenn A. Walsh

Reporting for SpaceWatchtower

A Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun will be visible (weather-permitting) Tuesday over Europe, Africa, Middle East, and western Asia. Live-stream web-casts are available of the event, for those not in view of the event or where weather conditions are not amenable.

NEITHER THIS PARTIAL SOLAR ECLIPSE / PARTIAL ECLIPSE OF THE SUN, NOR ANY PARTIAL PHASE OR ANNULAR PHASE OF ANY SOLAR ECLIPSE / ECLIPSE OF THE SUN, IS SAFE TO LOOK AT DIRECTLY, UNLESS YOU HAVE THE PROPER EQUIPMENT AND PROPER TRAINING TO DO SO SAFELY; OTHERWISE EYE-SIGHT COULD BE DAMAGED PERMANENTLY. GO TO THE FOLLOWING INTERNET LINK FOR TIPS ON SAFE VIEWING OF A SOLAR ECLIPSE / ECLIPSE OF THE SUN:

Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/FAQ/soleclipse/solareclipseviewingtips.html

Internet links to Live-stream Web-casts of this eclipse located near the end of this blog-post.

Of course, a Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun can only be observed (if, you are using a safe observing technique), if the Sun has risen at a certain locale, weather-permitting. Near the end of this blog-post is an Internet link to a map(s) showing where such an Eclipse can be observed, and whether the entire Eclipse can be observed, or if only a portion of the Eclipse can be observed. Also, near the end of this blog-post is an Internet link to a U.S.  Naval Observatory web-page, where you can plug in your location to determine the times of sunrise and sunset.

A Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun occurs at the New Moon primary phase of the Moon, when the Moon comes between the Earth and the Sun and blocks the Sun's light from a portion of the Earth's surface. The reason a Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun does not happen during every New Moon phase is because the Moon's orbit around the Earth is not a perfect circle and in the same orbital plane as the Earth. The Moon's orbit is tilted about 5 degrees to Earth's orbit; hence, the lunar shadow caused by sunlight usually misses the Earth's surface.

A Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun occurs when the the Sun's light is completely blocked from a portion of the Earth's surface. A Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun (including the partial phases of a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun) occurs when only a portion of the Sun's light is blocked from a portion of the Earth's surface.

An Annular Solar Eclipse / Annular Eclipse of the Sun occurs when the Moon is too far away from the Earth to completely cover the Sun's light; a dangerous annulus of sunlight, or “ring of fire”, is visible around the edge of the Moon during such an eclipse. This occurs as the Moon's orbit around the Earth is an ellipse, not a circle. Thus at certain times during the nearly-month long lunar orbit (known as a Tropical Month or Sidereal Month: ~27.32 days), the Moon is farther from the Earth than at other times of the month. When the time the Moon is farther from the Earth than average coincides with a Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun, the result is an Annular Solar Eclipse / Annular Eclipse of the Sun.

A rare type of Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun is the Hybrid Solar Eclipse / Hybrid Eclipse of the Sun (also known as an Annular / Total Solar Eclipse / Annular / Total Eclipse of the Sun). With this type of eclipse, at certain places on Earth it appears as a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun, while at other areas of the Earth's surface it appears as an Annular Solar Eclipse / Annular Eclipse of the Sun.

One of the greatest coincidences in nature is the fact that the Sun's distance from the Earth is about 400 times the distance from Earth to the Moon --- AND, the Sun's diameter is about 400 times the diameter of the Moon. This allows for the occurrence of a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun. Hence, even before humans had advanced technology, early scientists could learn more about the Sun and the Moon by observing a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun.

As early as the 4th Century B.C., Chinese astronomers were able to predict the dates and times of a Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun. Today, such eclipses can be predicted, accurately, far into the future.

During a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun on 1919 May 29, English astronomer Arthur Eddington made stellar observations which confirmed the General Theory of Relativity proposed by Albert Einstein in 1915. An experiment that could only occur during a Total Solar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Sun, Dr. Eddington was able to confirm Dr. Einstein's theoretical prediction of gravitational lenses, which shows that a large mass in Outer Space is capable of bending the light seen by an observer, from a light source beyond the large mass.

All eclipses come in pairs (a Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun comes a couple weeks before, or after, a Lunar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Moon), sometimes even in threes. In the current case, a Total Lunar Eclipse / Total Eclipse of the Moon will occur early on the morning of 2022 November 8, visible in North America, most of South America, Asia, Australia, and parts of northern and eastern Europe, weather-permitting.

The following are the times, in Eastern Daylight Saving Time (EDT) and Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), for the second and last Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun of 2022 (both a Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun):

Tuesday, 2022 October 25 – Eastern Daylight Saving Time (EDT) / Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) ---

Partial Solar Eclipse Begins: 4:58:20 a.m. EDT / 8:58 :20 UTC

Primary Moon Phase: New Moon – Lunation #1235: 6:49 a.m. EDT / 10:49 UTC

Maximum Eclipse (82 per-cent obscuration by Moon): 7:00:16 a.m. EDT / 11:00:16 UTC

Partial Solar Eclipse Ends: 9:02:16 a.m. EDT / 13:02:16 UTC

2022 October 25 also marks the 83rd anniversary of the grand public opening of the original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science in Pittsburgh, which occurred on 1939 October 25. The official dedication ceremony had occurred at 8:30 p.m. the previous evening, before an invitation-only list of VIPs. However, the dedication ceremony was broadcast on three Pittsburgh radio stations: KQV, KDKA, and WWSW. The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), the fifth major planetarium in America, was Pittsburgh's science and technology museum from 1939 to 1991.

Internet Links to Live-stream Web-casts of 2022 Oct. 25 Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun ---

Link >>> http://time.unitarium.com/events/eclipse/102022/live.html

Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun: Tips for Safe Viewing ---

Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/FAQ/soleclipse/solareclipseviewingtips.html

Internet Links to Determine Where an Eclipse can be Observed ---

Map (NASA): Link >>> 

U.S. Naval Observatory Sunrise / Sunset Calculator:

Link >>> https://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/RS_OneDay

Internet Links to Additional Information ---

Partial Solar Eclipse / Partial Eclipse of the Sun of 2022 Oct. 25 -

NASA: Link >>> https://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEsearch/SEsearchmap.php?Ecl=20221025 

TimeandDate.com: Link >>> https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/solar/2022-october-25 

Wikipedia.org: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse_of_October_25,_2022 

Solar Eclipse / Eclipse of the Sun: Link >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse

Related Blog Posts --

"100 Years Ago: U.S. Scientist Questions Evidence Proving General Theory of Relativity." Wed., 2019 Nov. 13.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2019/11/100-years-ago-us-scientist-questions.html 


"Great American Solar Eclipse Next Monday: Some Ways to See It Safely." Mon., 2017 Aug. 14.

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2017/08/great-american-solar-eclipse-next-mon.html

Source: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, a project of Friends of the Zeiss          

               Monday, 2022 October 24.


                             Like This Post?  Please Share!

           More Astronomy & Science News - SpaceWatchtower Twitter Feed:
            Link >>> https://twitter.com/spacewatchtower

        Astronomy & Science Links: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/#sciencelinks

                Want to receive SpaceWatchtower blog posts in your in-box ?
                Send request to < spacewatchtower@planetarium.cc >.

gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Informal Science Educator & Communicator                                                               (For more than 50 years! - Since Monday Morning, 1972 June 12):
Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/weblog/spacewatchtower/gaw/
Electronic Mail: < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >
Project Director, Friends of the Zeiss: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/fotz/
SpaceWatchtower Editor / Author: Link >>> http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/
Formerly Astronomical Observatory Coordinator & Planetarium Lecturer, original Buhl Planetarium & Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), America's fifth major planetarium and Pittsburgh's science & technology museum from 1939 to 1991.
Formerly Trustee, Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, Pittsburgh suburb of Carnegie, Pennsylvania, the fourth of only five libraries both constructed and endowed by Andrew Carnegie.
Author of History Web Sites on the Internet --
* Buhl Planetarium, Pittsburgh: Link >>>  http://www.planetarium.cc  Buhl Observatory: Link >>>  http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2016/11/75th-anniversary-americas-5th-public.html
* Adler Planetarium, Chicago: Link >>> http://adlerplanetarium.tripod.com
* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear: Link >>> http://johnbrashear.tripod.com
* Andrew Carnegie & Carnegie Libraries: Link >>> http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc

* Other Walsh-Authored Blog & Web-Sites: Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/gawweb.html

 

Thursday, October 20, 2022

Moonshot Space Museum Opens in Pittsburgh

                     

Observation windows looking into the Astrobotic Clean Room, from the new Moonshot Space Museum, located on Pittsburgh's Lower North Side. In this photograph, two Astrobotic engineers are working on the Peregrine Moon Lander, scheduled to go to the Moon early in 2023.

More photographs of the Moonshot Space Museum, and the Museum's Dedication Ceremony, at the following Internet Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/Moon/Moonshot_Museum/opening.html

(Image Source: Friends of the Zeiss; Photographer: Glenn A. Walsh)

By Glenn A. Walsh

Reporting for SpaceWatchtower

Pennsylvania's first space exploration museum, and the first museum to concentrate on “career readiness for the contemporary space industry” according to the museum publicity, opened in Pittsburgh on Saturday, 2022 October 15. Pittsburgh's Space Museum, the Moonshot Museum, was developed by Astrobotic Technology, which is building robotic space probes for missions on Earth's Moon.

The Moonshot Space Museum, which is located within the same building as the Astrobotic headquarters and manufacturing facility, includes large windows for public viewing of the construction of Moon-bound spacecraft, being built inside a Clean Room.

By necessity, the museum is smaller than most museums, about 3,000 square feet in size. This is approximately the size of the Bowdish Gallery, in Pittsburgh's original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science / Buhl Science Center, which many will remember as the former home of the very popular Miniature Railroad and Village.

However, the small size of the museum's gallery belies the great educational experience that can be found in the Moonshot Space Museum. About a dozen educational exhibits, along with four tables for children's activities, can be found in this gallery.

The museum's first day was well attended, and the public was delighted to learn that everyone visiting the first day received free admission. Additionally, each person attending the museum's Dedication Ceremony received a commemorative patch with a drawing of a lunar lander on the Moon, with the Earth and stars shown in the background, and the patch says: “MOONSHOT MUSEUM, FIND YOUR PLACE IN SPACE”.

Normal admission charges are $10 for adults, $5 for children ages 3 to 17, and children under the age of 3 are free-of-charge. Although the museum opened at 9:00 for the first day, normal visiting hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Prevailing Time, Wednesday through Sunday; the museum is closed Monday and Tuesday.

The Moonshot Space Museum is located at 1016 North Lincoln Avenue, one block from Allegheny Avenue, in the Manchester section of Pittsburgh's Lower North Side. Although the site has limited parking, public parking is available, along with a Pittsburgh Regional Transit (a.k.a. Port Authority of Allegheny County Transit) Light Rail Station at the corner of Allegheny Avenue and Reedsdale Street, three blocks from the museum; less than a block from the Allegheny Light Rail Station, in the opposite direction towards the Ohio River, is The Carnegie Science Center.

Astrobotic created the Moonshot Space Museum as an independent, non-profit organization. The initial $2.7 million capital campaign, for the museum, has been completed, with funding coming from the Richard King Mellon Foundation, Henry L. Hillman Foundation, Allegheny Foundation, Burke Foundation, Howmet Aerospace Foundation, and Buhl Foundation, among several others.

Each public visit begins with a ten-minute video, in a mini-theater, regarding the future of space exploration and the burgeoning commercial space industry. Upon leaving the mini-theater, visitors can immediately see the construction of Astrobotic spacecraft in a Clean Room, through large observation windows. Currently, Astrobotic engineers and technicians can be seen working on the Peregrine Moon Lander, which is set to go to space next year. To maintain an ultra-clean environment in the Clean Room, the engineers and technicians must be clad in white lab coats, hair-nets, blue gloves, and blue booties. Additionally, they must wear a special band on their wrist, which can be grounded, to eliminate static electric sparks.

A nearby exhibit shows a 1:30 model replica of the United Launch Alliance (ULA) Vulcan Centaur Rocket, which will launch Astrobotic's Peregrine Moon Lander into Outer Space early in 2023. This will be the first American spacecraft to land on the Moon in 50 years, since the Apollo 17 landing in December of 1972. Although no people will be with the Peregrine Moon Lander, 24 payloads will be carried including scientific equipment from NASA, other national space agencies, and Carnegie Mellon University.

Another nearby exhibit shows the CubeRover, a new Moon rover which Astrobotic describes as a cost-effective way for companies, governments, universities, non-profits, and individuals to send payloads to the Moon.

Large interactive maps of the Moon, one map showing the near-side hemisphere of the Moon and the other map showing the far-side, highlight lunar landing missions. Special note is given that the far-side of the Moon is NOT the dark-side of the Moon, as made famous in the Pink Floyd rock-and-roll band's hit song; both lunar hemispheres experience nightfall for about half a month, each month.

Another exhibit, called “Space Debates”, allows members of the public to consider a broad range of legal and social issues that will be encountered as humans further explore and commercialize Outer Space. The issues considered come under four categories: Governance and Law, Science and Technology, Environment and Nature, and Health and Medicine.

“Hydration Station” describes the importance of finding water (H2O) on the Moon and beyond, for future space travelers – for producing drinking water, rocket fuel, and breathable oxygen (O). This exhibit includes the museum's public drinking fountains!

“Hope Moonshot” allows visitors to write messages of hope for the future and submit them for archiving on the Moon. Each message will be transcribed to a memory-card and sent with one of the Astrobotic missions going to the Moon.

Other exhibits talk about mapping the Moon, exploring the lunar surface, and possible future lunar habitats. One exhibit describes some historic astronomers and space explorers, including Pittsburgh's Phoebe and John Brashear. John Brashear created a world-renowned company that produced telescopes and other precision scientific instruments; he also fund-raised for, and helped develop, the new Allegheny Observatory in the North Side's Riverview Park.

Additional scientists and space explorers are highlighted with special citations on the front of the museum's admissions and gift counter. This includes Emsworth, Pennsylvania-native Mike Fincke, a NASA Space Shuttle Astronaut who logged over a year in Outer Space, conducted 9 space-walks, and commanded the International Space Station (ISS); he cites the original Buhl Planetarium as inspiration for becoming an astronaut. Mount Washington's Jack Kinzler, known as NASA's “Mr. Fix-It”, is credited with creating an extending rod at the top of the flag poles mounted on the lunar surface, so the American flag appears to be flying, although there is no air or wind on the Moon.

Although Astrobotic, Moonshot Space Museum's parent, is not shy about displaying their space hardware and space exploration mission plans in this museum, they are really more interested in future staff for their space endeavors. They want the museum to inspire young people to consider possible careers with Astrobotic or other careers in the space industry. STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education for young people is a major thrust for the Moonshot Space Museum.

The Moonshot Space Museum was created by Astrobotic Technology, a spin-off company from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). Founded in 2007 by famed CMU robotics professor Red Whittaker, the privately-held company is now lead by President John Thornton. Astrobotic concentrates on robotics missions to the Moon, and eventually other planetary missions. In addition to the Peregrine Moon Lander mission scheduled for early next year, Astrobotic has a contract with NASA to carry the NASA VIPER Rover, which will look for water ice in the permanently-shadowed areas of craters near the Moon's South Pole; this mission is scheduled for November of 2024..

The Dedication Ceremony, held outside the entrance to the Moonshot Space Museum and Astrobotic Technology (their entrances are co-located), was hosted by Moonshot Space Museum Executive Director Sam Moore. Allegheny County Chief Executive Rich Fitzgerald and City of Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey addressed the on-lookers.

The Keynote Address was delivered by Dr. Lori Glaze, Director of the Planetary Science Division, Science Mission Directorate, for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). She spent several minutes explaining how curiosity is important for discovery and her hope that this new museum will spur curiosity in visitors. She said she hopes that visitors to the museum, particularly young people, will ponder how they can fit into the new space exploration profession.

A cheer-leading unit of young people, from the North Side's Manchester neighborhood where the Moonshot Space Museum is located, provided cheers for the opening of the museum.

Instead of a ribbon-cutting, the Moonshot Space Museum was launched by a science experiment performed by students from the North Side's Perry High School. The result of the science experiment was colored foam being launched several feet in the air, from four large science beakers.

Several tables, under a tent, were staffed by local non-profit organizations supporting the opening of the Moonshot Space Museum. These organizations included Assemble, A Community Space for Arts and Technology from Penn Avenue in Garfield, The Carnegie Science Center from just a few blocks down the hill, and theatrical group Attack Theatre from 45th Street in Lawrenceville. There was also a table with children's activities.

Some non-profit organizations provided volunteers to assist with the Moonshot Space Museum's first day, including the Amateur Astronomers Association of Pittsburgh and The Carnegie Science Center.

Curiously, Pittsburgh seems to have a habit of the public opening of science museums on a day ending in the number “5” in the month of October! The Moonshot Space Museum opened to the public on 2022 October 15.

The grand public opening of the original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science occurred on 1939 October 25. The official dedication had occurred at 8:30 p.m. the previous evening, before an invitation-only list of VIPs. However, the dedication was broadcast on three Pittsburgh radio stations: KQV, KDKA, and WWSW.

The Carnegie Science Center officially opened to the public on 1991 October 5. The retired U.S. Navy submarine, USS Requin, docked in the Ohio River next to the new science center building, had been available for public tours since September of 1990, operated by the Buhl Science Center (a.k.a. The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science) until the new science center opened.

Even The Carnegie Museum of Natural History opened on a day ending in “5”, but 5 days after October had ended. The Carnegie Institute, which includes The Carnegie Museum of Natural History and The Carnegie Library, as well as The Carnegie Music Hall and The Carnegie Museum of Art, opened to the public on 1895 November 5. Andrew Carnegie, a proud native of Scotland, chose November 5 to open some of his early libraries [including libraries in Homestead, Pennsylvania (1898) and Canton, Ohio (1905), in addition to Pittsburgh]. In Scotland, November 5 is known as Guy Fawkes Day, commemorating the failed plot (Gunpowder Plot of 1605) to blow-up the British Parliament and assassinate James Charles Stuart, who was Scotland's King James IV and King James I of England and Ireland (after the 1603 union of the English and Scottish Crowns).

 

                 

Commemorative patch given to each person who attended the Dedication Ceremony of the Moonshot Space Museum.

More photographs of the Moonshot Space Museum, and the Museum's Dedication Ceremony, at the following Internet Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/Moon/Moonshot_Museum/opening.html

(Image Source: Friends of the Zeiss; Photographer: Glenn A. Walsh)

Internet Links to Additional Information ---

ADDENDUM: Photographs of the Moonshot Space Museum and the Museum's Dedication Ceremony:

Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/Moon/Moonshot_Museum/opening.html

Moonshot Space Museum: Link >>> https://moonshotmuseum.org/

Astrobotic Technology -

Link 1 >>> https://www.astrobotic.com/

Link 2 >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astrobotic_Technology

History of The Buhl Planetarium & Institute of Popular Science / Buhl Science Center:

Link >>> http://www.planetarium.cc/

Astronomer & Telescope Maker John Brashear: Link >>> https://johnbrashear.tripod.com/

NASA Astronaut Mike Fincke: Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/bio/Pghastronauts.html#fincke

History of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh: Link >>> https://andrewcarnegie.tripod.com/cfl.html#clp

Related Blog-Posts ---

"Science Museums Rebound After Worst of Pandemic." Tue., 2022 Sept. 27.

Association of Science & Technology Centers (ASTC) 2022 Conference in Pittsburgh

Link >>> https://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2022/09/science-museums-rebound-after-worst-of.html


"Pittsburgh Museum Displays Historic Apollo 11 Moon Mission Artifacts." Wed., 2018 Oct. 24.

Source: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, a project of Friends of the Zeiss          

               Thursday, 2022 October 20.


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gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Informal Science Educator & Communicator                                                               (For more than 50 years! - Since Monday Morning, 1972 June 12):
Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium2.tripod.com/weblog/spacewatchtower/gaw/
Electronic Mail: < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >
Project Director, Friends of the Zeiss: Link >>> http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/fotz/
SpaceWatchtower Editor / Author: Link >>> http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/
Formerly Astronomical Observatory Coordinator & Planetarium Lecturer, original Buhl Planetarium & Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), Pittsburgh's science & technology museum from 1939 to 1991.
Formerly Trustee, Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, Pittsburgh suburb of Carnegie, Pennsylvania.
Author of History Web Sites on the Internet --
* Buhl Planetarium, Pittsburgh: Link >>>  http://www.planetarium.cc  Buhl Observatory: Link >>>  http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com/2016/11/75th-anniversary-americas-5th-public.html
* Adler Planetarium, Chicago: Link >>> http://adlerplanetarium.tripod.com
* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear: Link >>> http://johnbrashear.tripod.com
* Andrew Carnegie & Carnegie Libraries: Link >>> http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc

* Other Walsh-Authored Blog & Web-Sites: Link >>> https://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/gawweb.html