Astronomy Fact of the Day: August 5, 2020

On this date in 1930, Neil Alden Armstrong was born. Flying to the moon along with Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins aboard Apollo 11, Armstrong became the first person to step onto the Moon. During his spaceflight career, he also flew to orbit on Gemini 8, becoming a member of the first crew to… Continue reading

Astronomy Fact of the Day: August 4, 2020

Tonight, the first few objects that will be visible after sunset are the planets Jupiter and Saturn, and the stars Arcturus and Vega. Both planets will be visible in the southeast;  the stars will be seen overhead, with Arcturus in the west and Vega in the east.  

Astronomy Fact of the Day: August 3, 2020

In 2004 on this date, the Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging (MESSENGER) probe was launched, becoming the first spacecraft to orbit Mercury. Its primary goal was to study the geology, magnetic field, and chemical composition of the planet.

Astronomy Fact of the Day: August 1, 2020

On this date in 1944, German Me-163B ‘Komet’ rocket-powered fighters first attacked American bomber formations over Europe. The Me-163 had sweptback wings, a Walther liquid-fuel rocket motor, a top speed of 590 mph, and a powered flight duration of 8-10 minutes.

Night Sky Update: July 31 – August 08 2020

This is the Saint Louis Science Center’s NIGHT SKY UPDATE for the week of Friday, July 31, 2020. Information updated weekly or as needed. Times given as local St. Louis time (CDT).  For definitions of terminology used in the night sky update, click the highlighted text. Star parties at the Saint Louis Science Center have… Continue reading

Astronomy Fact of the Day: July 31, 2020

In 1934 on this date, Gerhard Zucker, a German businessman and rocket engineer, announced a demonstration of his rocket that would launch it over 1600 meters of water between the town of Harris and the Isle of Scarp. At the moment of launch, government officials watched as the rocket exploded, scattering the burning payload of… Continue reading

Astronomy Fact of the Day: July 30, 2020

On August 1st, you can watch the Moon pass near Jupiter and Saturn in the sky! The Moon and Jupiter rise together in conjunction on this date, becoming visible around 7:30pm. As the night goes on, you will see the moon get closer to Saturn until the Moon sets around 4:30am.

Astronomy Fact of the Day: July 29, 2020

On this date in 1901, Florence Lowe “Pancho” Barnes was born. An American barnstormer, air racer and Hollywood stunt flier, she pioneered new air routes into Mexico. In the 1930s, she opened a desert flying dude ranch which later became a legendary watering hole for Edwards Air Force Base test pilots.