Spring is here and ready to capture the world’s attention with a total lunar eclipse. The eclipse will begin early on the morning of April 15 at approximately 2 a.m. EDT. If you have questions about the eclipse, this will be your chance!
NASA will host two events for NASA moon experts to answer your questions. On Monday, April 14 from 2-3 p.m. EDT, NASA planetary scientist Renee Weber will take your questions via a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything). The Reddit page will be live on April 14 at approximately 1:45 p.m. EDT.
NASA astronomer Mitzi Adams and astrophysicist Alphonse Sterling will also answer questions in a live web chat, beginning on April 15 at 1 a.m. EDT and continuing through the end of the eclipse (approximately 5 a.m. EDT). The chat module will go live on this page at approximately 12:45 a.m. EDT.
Marshall scientist Bill Cooke and his team, from the Meteoroid Environment Office at Marshall Space Flight Center, watched the sky during the peak of the Perseid meteor shower. The team used the Marshall meteor cameras the evening of August 12 and into the early morning August 13 to capture images of the Perseids.
Meteor over Tullahoma, Tennessee
(Courtesy: NASA/MSFC/Meteoroid Environment Office)
The Perseids have been observed for about 2,000 years. The source of the annual meteor shower is the debris trail left behind comet Swift-Tuttle. Each year in August, the Earth passes through a cloud of the comets debris. These bits of ice and dust burn up in the Earth’s atmosphere. Most of the Perseid meteors that we observe now were ejected from Swift-Tuttle about 1,000 years ago.
Cooke and his team answered questions about the Perseids during an Up All Night with NASA web chat. You can read a transcript of the web chat (PDF, 550 Kb) to learn more about the Perseids: what creates them, their composition, how old they are, how fast they travel and other fascinating facts.
On the night of July 26, allsky cameras of the NASA fireball network detected three Perseid meteors in the skies above Tennessee and Alabama. The first seen by the cameras this year, these meteors are the “advance guard” of the Perseid meteor shower, which will peak on the night of Aug. 12.
A bright Perseid meteor crosses the sky over Huntsville, Ala. on July 26, 2011
Credit: NASA/MSFC/Meteoroid Environment Office
Want to watch the Perseids with NASA astronomy experts? Make plans to join astronomer Bill Cooke and his team from NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center for an “up all night” Web chat on the night of Aug. 12 and into the early morning of Aug. 13. You can ask your questions and also view a live Ustream view of the Perseids in the skies over Huntsville, Ala.
If you or another astronomy group is planning a live Web view of the Perseids, please leave us a comment and let us know — we’ll feature a link to your live Perseids Web stream!
More information about the chat is located here: https://www.nasa.gov/connect/chat/perseids_2011.html