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Looking Up: Happy 250th!

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1min 30sec

This week Looking Up reaches a milestone episode.

For some reason that I’m sure sociologists and anthropologists fully understand, humans tend to like things in nice round numbers, or at least I do. And so, the topic of this week’s episode of Looking Up is, well, Looking Up, as we’ve reached the 250th edition of our little astronomy show.

The very first episode aired on February 2nd, 2015, which means Looking Up is now in its 5th year on air. That first episode talked about Comet Lovejoy, a very interesting ball of ice and dirt zipping around our Sun in January of 2015, and as the Sun heated it, it spewed off into space sugars, alcohol, and other materials at a rate of 18 tons per second. Or, as a Paris-based astronomer put it, 500 bottles of wine per second. Comet Lovejoy is now back in the cold depths of space, on its 622-year long orbit. You’ll see it again in 2633.

I’ve been honored to present Looking Up with my regular once a month contributor, Bruce Bookout, as well as a number of other nice folks, including my own dear wife Dana, who lent their voices to the cause.]

Given the speed of light, Looking Up episodes have now caught up with and passed the Voyager 1 spacecraft, more than 9.5 billion miles from Earth, and indeed, has even passed by the nearest star to our Sun, Proxima Centauri.

It’s been a great deal of fun bringing you the wonders of the night sky, and I can’t wait until the 500th episode. Until then, …   

If you’d like to take a closer look at any of the other wonderful and amazing things in the sky, please visit csastro.org for a link to information on our monthly meetings and our free public star parties.