Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 21, 2021

On this date in 1961, the unmanned Mercury-Atlas 2 (MA-2) flight launched from Cape Canaveral; this flight was done to check maximum temperatures Mercury could encounter in the coming flights. For more information about the Mercury program, visit NASA’s pages here.

Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 20, 2021

For those interested in learning about meteor showers, one great resource is the American Meteor Society. Here you can learn about observing meteor showers, find a meteor shower calendar and report any fireballs (bright meteors) you happen to see while observing.  Check out their homepage here.

Night Sky Update: February 19 – February 27, 2021

This is the Saint Louis Science Center’s NIGHT SKY UPDATE for the week of Friday, February 19, 2021. Information updated weekly or as needed. Times given as local St. Louis time which is Central Standard Time (CST). For definitions of terminology used in the night sky update, click the highlighted text. If relying on times… Continue reading

Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 19, 2021

In 2017 on this date, SpaceX launched Dragon Crew Resupply Spacecraft 10 (CRS-10) to the International Space Station. This was the first non-NASA launch operation ever from the Kennedy Space Center, as well as the first launch from KSC since 2011. Visit SpaceX’s official website, with information about all its spacecraft, here.

Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 18, 2021

Tonight the Moon and Mars will exhibit an appulse. An appulse is when two or more astronomical objects appear close together in the sky. Tonight, the Moon and Mars will be separated by about 3.46°. You will be able to see them together in a binocular field of view.

Hafted Ax – Colorado Cliff Dwellings, ca. 1200-1300

Held by 20 inch leather thongs to a wooden handle, this granite stone ax is a wonderful example of craftsmanship and function. Early indigenous groups in North America worked extensively with wood to build houses, temples, fences, and other structures. They developed handled tools which allowed them to work with large pieces of timber for… Continue reading

Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 17, 2021

On this date in 1965, NASA launched Ranger 8, one in a series of unmanned lunar probes. Ranger probes were intended to take close-up photos of the lunar surface before intentionally crashing into the Moon. Ranger 8 successfully returned 7,137 photos before lunar impact. For a highly detailed description of the flight, its goals and… Continue reading

Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 16, 2021

On February 18, NASA’s newest Mars rover Perseverance is expected to land in a crater called Jezero. This crater is believed to have once been flooded with water. You can watch a live broadcast from NASA right here, starting at 1:15 pm CST.

Astronomy Fact of the Day: February 15, 2021

In 1935 on this date, Dr. Roger Bruce Chaffee was born. He became an American pilot astronaut from 1963 to 1967. In July of 1967, he died in the Apollo 1 launchpad fire, alongside Virgil I. “Gus” Grissom and Edward H. White II.