The Sun’s gravity ensures that many asteroids and comets move on paths that can intersect the Earth. Most of the resulting cosmic impacts are inconsequential but some are devastating to life, as new evidence reveals. Ages 8 and older, please.
Seeing the sky darken in midday from a total eclipse is the most remarkable thing that you can see. I will describe this August 21st’s solar eclipse — with totality visible southwest of Asheville or in Charleston, SC — and what the 93% partial eclipse in Raleigh will be like, with photos of past eclipses.
On Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, the moon will pass in front of the sun and cast a shadow upon all of North America, creating what could well be the best viewed eclipse of all time. Solar eclipses occur when the moon blocks any part of the sun and – weather permitting – the entire continent will have the opportunity to view this once-in-a-lifetime eclipse. NOTE: This is a Skype presentation. Ages 12 and older, please.
Since the advent of the optical telescope, ordinary people have made extraordinary contributions to astronomy. This presentation highlights these advancements and explores how you can get involved in discovering our universe. All ages are welcome.
Dr. Smith will present some of the current astronomical techniques and tools used to observe young stellar systems that are still in the formation process. She will include some of her latest research results from observations at the Keck Observatory. Ages 8 and older, please.
Dr. Treuthardt will discuss some of the strange galaxies observed in the Universe, including the newly discovered PGC 1000714, and what they can tell us. Ages 12 and older, please.
A billion here, a billion there — hear about state-of-the-art advances in how astronomers can turn a pinprick of starlight into an estimate of a star’s age. All ages are welcome.
Europa’s global ocean contains twice the liquid water of all Earth’s oceans combined, and this moon of Jupiter may be the most likely place for the first detection of extraterrestrial life. The new Europa Clipper spacecraft mission has recently been approved by Congress, including a mandate for a lander to be included as part of the mission. Ages 12 and older, please.
Asteroids are the remains of incomplete planet formation, and thus provide keys to the processes and materials that created the Earth and other rocky planets. Meteorites are samples of asteroids, and their various types can be related to the history, structure, and compositions of their parent bodies. Ages 12 and older, please.
The latest news about Gravitational Waves, Lenses, Black Holes, Dark Energy and Matter, and other things. Ages 8 and older, please.
Did you know there are currently dozens of NASA spacecraft along with spacecraft from space agencies in Europe, Japan, and India exploring our solar system and beyond? You’ll learn about their most recent discoveries and what to look forward to in 2017. All ages welcome.
Solar Eclipses aren’t just a fantastic event to observe and enjoy, they are a rare opportunity for doing real science. You’ll learn more about how revealing the sun’s atmosphere enables study of magnetic fields and even as a test of Einstein’s general theory of relativity as well citizen science opportunities you can contribute to. All ages welcome.
The total Solar Eclipse of August 21, 2017 is a once in a lifetime event for most of us. Learn how you can best see it, what to expect, where to go and strategies for staying ahead of the weather. All ages are welcome.
A look at NASA’s human spaceflight plans for the 21st century, with a focus on NASA’s new crewed vehicle, Orion, and the new heavy lift launch vehicle, the Space Launch System. All ages welcome.
A look at this year’s exciting developments in the commercial space industry, with a focus on SpaceX and Orbital Sciences, as well as the Commercial Crew projects. All ages welcome.
A humorous look at the good and bad science in recent space movies. All ages welcome.
There are two rovers exploring Mars currently. What have they found? All ages welcome.
Monday, August 21: be ready for the once-in-a-lifetime Great American Eclipse. Find out about safe viewing techniques and where to go in order to best observe this event. All ages welcome.
How to most effectively use the visit to the planetarium to enhance learning opportunities and enjoy the visit. Also, find out what planetariums can do to enhance science instruction. All ages welcome.
NASA studies our Sun and alien suns in many ways. Why? And what have we learned? Two spacecraft missions specifically, Genesis and Kepler, are highlighted in this presentation. All ages are welcome.
Pluto is still providing surprises to scientists. Learn about the latest news of this far away world. Ages 8 and older, please.
Recent studies of the Sun and other solar stars have hinted that the Sun is entering a new evolutionary phase which would significantly affect its magnetic field. Ages 12 and older, please.
The European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA are working together to create a mission to impact the moon of an asteroid… and watch it up close. Can the things we learn protect our planet from disaster? Ages 12 and older, please.
For the past 21 months, the Dawn spacecraft has been orbiting Ceres, the biggest protoplanet in the Main Asteroid Belt of the Solar System. We’ve discovered all sorts of things, like bizarre ice crystals and subsurface oceans; what can they teach us about how planets are structured? Ages 12 and older, please.
Scientists have long believed Mars was once “Earth-like” with a dense atmosphere and liquid water, a theory supported by recent rover missions on the red planet’s surface. The MAVEN spacecraft was sent to investigate the mystery of the missing Mars atmosphere and the impact of the solar wind on Mars. Findings from the mission reveal the mechanisms that over time have dramatically reduced the density and affected the composition of the Mars atmosphere as we see it today. All ages are welcome.
Qualls will discuss the key features of the OSIRIS-Rex mission to visit the asteroid Bennu and return a sample to Earth for analysis, and will update the mission since its launch. Ages 8 and older, please.
Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at the amazing world of Kennedy Space Center in 1969 as 24,000 people got Apollo 11 ready to fly to the Moon. We’ll also look at some actual equipment from the launch control center. Book signing to follow presentation. Ages 12 and older, please.
Discover some crucial ways the Earth is affected by our biggest and closest neighbors: orbit, rotation, axis, tides, currents, winds, solar storms and more. All these things profoundly influence life as we know it on our planet. Ages 12 and older, please.
This presentation will describe the top 10 ways our Sun and other stars can kill you.
NOTE: Sensitive youth may be affected by this information. Ages 12 and older, please.
Tips on how to get started in astronomy and what you can observe from your own home. All ages welcome.
Binoculars are a very convenient tool for observing the night sky, and they provide excellent views of many celestial objects. Learn how to use binoculars to observe the night sky. Ages 12 and older, please.
Activities and classroom-ready materials aligned to the NGSS. Ages 12 and older, please.