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Planetarium

 J​uly 2014​

Trivia

The Temperature Range of the Moon
The Moon has no atmosphere to protect it from the Sun. Temperatures range from about -150 degrees F all the way up 280 degrees F. It is doubtful that life ever existed on the Moon - that is, except for a few brief days in the 20th Century. Twelve men, during six Apollo missions, walked and existed on its surface in specially designed space suits that protected them from the harsh conditions.

What to See in the Sky during July
You can’t miss Venus climbing in the southeastern sky before sunrise.

Look for Mars halfway up the southeastern sky after sunset.  Its distinctive red disk can be easily located to the right of the Moon (very close) on the evening of the 5th.

Saturn seems to be chasing after the red planet this month and you’ll be able to spot it a bit lower in the sky than Mars.  If you have trouble picking out the beautiful ringed planet, look for it above the Moon on the evening of the 7th. Its rings will be visible even in small telescopes.

Jupiter sets in the west right about sunset, but will be visible again in September before sunrise.

Full Moon – July 12
New Moon – July 26

July 4th -  Happy birthday USA!
July 19th – 45th anniversary of the first Moon landing

Summer is an excellent time to observe the night sky. If you don’t have a telescope, try viewing the sky with binoculars. But the sky is still wondrous to observe, even in the city, with the unaided eye. You’ll be surprised what you can see and learn just by taking the time to look up. See if you can spot a planet or two. Look for the outlines of constellations. It’s easy to find star maps online, at the library or in astronomy magazines.

Some Local Events
Find out if there’s a star party in your area. Star parties are scheduled for June 21 in Black Star Canyon and in Anza on June 28th. Contact the Orange County Astronomers for more information (Starline 714-751-6867) or go to www.ocastronomers.org.

Visit the Heritage Museum in Santa Ana on Aug. 1st for a beginner’s class.

And don’t forget to see one of our planetarium shows when we re-open later this year. Watch this website or follow us on Facebook (“Tessmann Planetarium”) for the latest updates.