'Dark Side of the Moon' laser show at Mueller Planetarium October 30th
Showing Saturday night, October 30, 2005, at 8 and 9:30 p.m.
See the real "Dark Side of the Moon" on October 27th with a total eclipse of the Moon and then celebrate it in laser light in Mueller Planetarium on Saturday night, October 30th. There will be a total eclipse of the Moon visible in Lincoln and all of Nebraska and surrounding states on Wednesday, Oct. 27 from 7:24 p.m. through midnight. Area observatories will provide opportunities for viewing the eclipse through telescopes (weather permitting). And then Mueller Planetarium will celebrate the eclipse, and Halloween with a showing of the classic laser show featuring the music of Pink Floyd on Saturday night Oct. 30th at 8 and 9:30 p.m. Only the laser show requires an admission fee.
Both the UNL Student Observatory (on the parking garage west of the stadium) and Hyde Memorial Observatory (in Holmes Park) will be open that night for the eclipse. Partial eclipse (when the Moon is partly darkened) begins at 8:21 p.m. and totality (total eclipse) is from 9:29 to 10:55 p.m. The Moon then becomes partially eclipsed till midnight. This is the last total eclipse of the moon visible from Lincoln for almost three years. UNL astronomer Dr. Martin Gaskell welcomes visitors to the observatory: “This eclipse will be darker than the one last November, but I do not expect the moon to turn a really deep blood red this year." Astronomer Fred Espanek at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center points out that: “An eclipse of the Moon can only take place at Full Moon, and only if the Moon passes through some portion of Earth's shadow. The shadow is actually composed of two cone-shaped parts, one nested inside the other. The outer shadow or penumbra is a zone where Earth blocks some (but not all) of the Sun's rays. In contrast, the inner shadow or umbra is a region where Earth blocks all direct sunlight from reaching the Moon. This event is a total eclipse of the Moon which will be visible from North and South America as well as Europe, Africa and Antarctica.”
Remember that optical telescopes cannot see through clouds, so viewing of the eclipse is weather-permitting. There is no danger in directly viewing the Moon during a Moon eclipse (unlike an eclipse of the Sun). Mueller Planetarium Coordinator Jack Dunn mentions: “you can see the eclipse with your normal eyesight or binoculars at home. But for a telescope view, join the public at one of the two observatories.” Dress warmly and bring your family. You can visit the UNL student Observatory from 7:30 p.m. till midnight with the same hours for the Hyde Memorial Observatory. Admission at both facilities is free. So go out an enjoy one of nature’s spectacles on the night of Wednesday, Oct. 27th. This is the last total eclipse of the moon visible from Lincoln for almost three years.
Then, on the evening of Saturday, October 30th, you can celebrate the darkening of the Moon and all the spirit of Halloween with a performance of what Planetarium Coordinator Jack Dunn calls: “probably the most classic of our laser shows.” The laser light show of Pink Floyd’s album: “Dark Side of the Moon” will be performed in Mueller Planetarium at 8 and 9:30 p.m. Admission is charged and tickets are sold beginning at 7:30 p.m. at the Museum front desk. Mueller Planetarium is located in the University of Nebraska State Museum (Morrill Hall) on the UNL city campus at 14th and U. Streets. Running time of the show is 55 minutes.
TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE MOON: See the eclipse at home or at the UNL Student Observatory or Hyde Memorial Observatory on Wednesday night October 27th. Both observatories are open from 7:30 p.m. to midnight (weather permitting). No fee for admission.
LASER SHOW: See it at Mueller Planetarium on Saturday night, October 30th at 8 or 9:30 p.m. Admission: $5 Adults; $4 all students and college students with I.D.
For more information:
Jack Dunn, Mueller Planetarium, firstname.lastname@example.org or 472-2641
Dr. Martin Gaskell, UNL Dept of Physics and Astronomy, email@example.com or 472-4788
Fred Espenak’s Eclipse pages at NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center