Neil Armstrong Planetarium

Neil Armstrong Planetarium The Neil Armstrong Planetarium at Altoona Area High School hosts high school Astronomy classes and public and private sky shows- come "Inside Outer Space!"
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The Neil Armstrong Planetarium at Altoona Area High School (AAHS) is an active part of the Altoona and wider Blair County community. During the school day, approximately 150 high school students are educated in the Planetarium's 2 year-long Academic Astronomy classes (level 3) an 3 semester-long Astronomy classes (level 2). Astronomy is an elective at AAHS, but does count for science credits for participating students. Elementary school groups often visit the Planetarium in the afternoon, particularly students from nearby Penn-Lincoln Elementary, who all make the short walk to the Planetarium with their teachers 3x per year. The Planetarium has hosted groups from every public elementary school in Altoona, as well as Parochial and homeschool groups. A typical evening may see the Planetarium play host to a birthday party, visiting Cub Scout, Boy Scout, Brownies, or Girl Scout group, private sky show, or even a night of our new Adult Night Sky Study course! The Planetarium has truly become a cross-curricular facility, with interactive modules designed for mythology, history, English, and environmental sciences classes. We are expanding our community partnerships, and have worked with the Altoona Public Library, Quaint Corner Children's Museum, Fort Roberdeau, Indian Caverns, and the Church in the Middle of the Block community center. So come visit the Planetarium! There's always something to explore "Inside Outer Space!"

Mission: Our mission is to promote the science and history of astronomy, and a better understanding of our place in the Cosmos, to students and guests alike!

05/08/2020
Starlink Discussion National Academy of Sciences

https://www.spacex.com/news/2020/04/28/starlink-update

Really well-written article from SpaceX which may explain at least some of the "fleet of UFOs" sightings we've had across Central PA over the past 2-3 months!

I was initially skeptical that these small cube satellites were naked eye visible, but according to SpaceX, sunlight especially reflects off of their surfaces- and the larger solar panels powering them- while they are ascending to their "parking orbit" above the Earth.

Once the satellites designed to provide worldwide internet actually reach their final height, they are likely no longer naked eye visible.

SpaceX is launching Starlink to provide high-speed, low-latency broadband connectivity across the globe, including to locations where internet has traditionally been too expensive, unreliable, or entirely unavailable. We also firmly believe in the importance of a natural night sky for all of us to e...

Awesome naked eye comet alert! Comet SWAN now visible in the constellation Pisces. However, since Pisces is a fall const...
05/04/2020
SWAN comet 2020: Space rock now visible to the naked eye - how to see

Awesome naked eye comet alert! Comet SWAN now visible in the constellation Pisces. However, since Pisces is a fall constellation and we are in spring, you have to be up early (5:00-5:30AMish) to see it.

1st article gives an overview, and 2nd article explains how the Coronavirus quarantine helped an amateur astronomer discover it!

https://www.express.co.uk/news/science/1276081/swan-comet-2020-atlas-comet-how-to-see-comet-f8-location-space-weather

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-05-02/coronavirus-restrictions-lead-to-victorian-man-discovering-comet/12181100

COMET SWAN, the space rock which took over from Comet ATLAS in terms of astronomical interest, is now visible to the naked eye, astronomers have revealed.

Two short, interesting articles to pass the time...1. Didn't realize they were ready, but NASA and SpaceX are preparing ...
04/30/2020
Crew Dragon Will Be Launching on May 27th - Universe Today

Two short, interesting articles to pass the time...

1. Didn't realize they were ready, but NASA and SpaceX are preparing for the first US-manned launch into space in nearly a decade this upcoming month!

https://www.universetoday.com/145764/crew-dragon-will-be-launching-on-may-27th/

2. If you think working from home has been hard on you, imagine trying to pilot an SUV-sized rover on Mars from home.

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/nasas-curiosity-keeps-rolling-as-team-operates-rover-from-home

NASA and SpaceX are targeting May 27, 2020 for an historic mission: the launch of the first astronauts on the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft, with the destination as the International Space Station (ISS). The crew, NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley, are scheduled to launch on a Falcon...

Shared by a friend. Hang in there everyone! 👽 🛸
04/27/2020

Shared by a friend. Hang in there everyone! 👽 🛸

Guesting on the Chris DePerno show at 7:00PM eastern tonight, talking about Apollo missions, UFOs, antigravity, and ever...
04/25/2020

Guesting on the Chris DePerno show at 7:00PM eastern tonight, talking about Apollo missions, UFOs, antigravity, and everything in between! Check it out if you’re bored in quarantine! https://kgraradio.com/project-aries-radio/

Able to guest on the Kevin Moore Show our of the UK, talking with him about the potential of extraterrestrial life on th...
04/21/2020

Able to guest on the Kevin Moore Show our of the UK, talking with him about the potential of extraterrestrial life on the Moon! He was very kind. I love the British. 👽 🛸 🌙 🇬🇧

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpCI1DAxv-8

Calling all AAHS Planetarium Alumni! Bummed that the NCAA Tournament was cancelled? Looking for something to do to pass ...
04/16/2020

Calling all AAHS Planetarium Alumni! Bummed that the NCAA Tournament was cancelled? Looking for something to do to pass the time at home? Want one last shot at re-living high school glory?

Look no further than 2020 Astronomy Madness! Read the directions, and join online. Your bracket will be automatically scored, and I will post video updates over the next few weeks. Please enter your name with (Alumni) beside it.

Brackets are due by 11:59PM next Tuesday, April 21st!

http://tinyurl.com/AstronomyMadness2020

The following is from Slooh (Moon image credit firstpost.com), and is about tonight's Pink Supermoon! Check it out...Sup...
04/07/2020

The following is from Slooh (Moon image credit firstpost.com), and is about tonight's Pink Supermoon! Check it out...

Supermoon Trilogy: Episode II - The Super Pink Moon
Join us on Tuesday, April 7th, starting at 7:30 PM EDT to watch the second of a Supermoon Trilogy.

Other timezones: 4:30 PM PDT ¦ 23:30UTC ¦ 5 AM IST (8th).

LARGEST FULL MOON OF 2020
Tuesday's Super Pink Moon is the second in a series of three supermoons and is the largest Full Moon of 2020.

This particular Full Pink Moon occurs when the Moon is closest to Earth in its elliptical orbit, making it a supermoon. Officially, the phenomenon is called a "perigee-syzygy moon", but we prefer supermoon!

MOON QUESTS
During the show, we'll be discussing the new Moon quests that were launched last week - the Lunar Phases and Lunar Features quests. Hundreds of members have already started to collect their Moon images but it's not too late to start now!

WHAT'S IT GOT TO DO WITH THE EASTER BUNNY?
The first Full Moon of northern astronomical spring is also the "Paschal Full Moon", which is used to determine the date of Easter (Easter is the first Sunday after the Paschal Full Moon). It's possible that the association of eggs and bunnies with Easter are from other names given to April's Full Moon - the Hare Moon and Egg Moon.

WHY PINK?
The Native American Algonquin tribe named the fourth Full Moon of the year the "Pink Moon" because it marked the appearance of early spring flowers such as the pink ground phlox. The Moon itself won't, unfortunately, be pink! Other tribes and cultures had different names for this particular Full Moon, which helped them mark the passage of time and the seasons. The Sioux named it the Sprouting Grass Moon, the Comanche tribe called it the New Spring Moon. Islamic communities around the world celebrate Bara’at Night, also known as the Night of Innocence, during April's Full Moon.

Quarantine is a great time to observe the night skies with family! Here, AAHS alum Jeff Lingafelt tracked the Moon throu...
04/04/2020

Quarantine is a great time to observe the night skies with family! Here, AAHS alum Jeff Lingafelt tracked the Moon through its waxing stages over multiple nights. (The mirrors of his reflector invert the image, making it appear waning at first glance.)

Last night, he snapped a great shot of Venus in conjunction in the Pleiades star cluster. He’s got a great, portable setup here, with most of his pictures snapped with his smartphone through his telescope’s eyepiece. Go Jeff! ✨ 🔭

Awesome conjunction tonight, courtesy of spaceweather.com, and Tom Kasner and our local Starlight Astronomy Club!Space W...
04/03/2020
SpaceWeather.com -- News and information about meteor showers, solar flares, auroras, and near-Earth asteroids

Awesome conjunction tonight, courtesy of spaceweather.com, and Tom Kasner and our local Starlight Astronomy Club!

Space Weather News for April 3, 2020
https://spaceweather.com
https://www.spaceweatheralerts.com

VENUS AND THE PLEIADES IN CONJUNCTION: When the sun goes down tonight, step outside and look west. Venus and the Pleiades star cluster are in conjunction--the best in 8 years. Viewed through binoculars, it will look like a supernova has gone off among the Seven Sisters. Visit Spaceweather.com for sky maps and observing tips.

Aurora alerts: Sign up for Spaceweather Alerts and receive a text message when auroras appear in your area.

Above: Venus approaching the Pleiades on April 1st. Photo credit: Fred Espenak of Portal, Arizona [photo gallery]

Apollo 21 capsule: Splashing down at a Planetarium near you...sometime in 2020 at this point. #Apollo21 #AAHSastronomy @...
03/31/2020

Apollo 21 capsule: Splashing down at a Planetarium near you...sometime in 2020 at this point. #Apollo21 #AAHSastronomy @ West Wheatfield Township, Indiana County, Pennsylvania

The original quarantine suit. #Apollo @ Neil Armstrong Planetarium
03/28/2020

The original quarantine suit. #Apollo @ Neil Armstrong Planetarium

If you are bored stuck indoors and want to brush up on your history of the Legend of Nibiru / Planet X, check out this 2...
03/25/2020

If you are bored stuck indoors and want to brush up on your history of the Legend of Nibiru / Planet X, check out this 2-hour interview I did with Aquarian Radio out of Hawaii two weeks ago! It’s definitely a New Agey channel, but the hosts are super kind, and we talked some good Astronomy!

https://youtu.be/qe7ThJAk744

Great Astronomy Club field trip to Davey Lab at Penn State. Too bad The Creamery was closed! That burned. That burned de...
03/12/2020

Great Astronomy Club field trip to Davey Lab at Penn State. Too bad The Creamery was closed! That burned. That burned deep. @ Penn State Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics

Juniata Elementary School 4th Grade absolutely CRUSHED IT at the Planetarium this week! Here, Mr. Perino’s students inve...
03/11/2020

Juniata Elementary School 4th Grade absolutely CRUSHED IT at the Planetarium this week! Here, Mr. Perino’s students invented games like “Astronomy Sorry” to learn the winter sky, while Ms. Mohler’s students decked out in Astronomy swag for their big visit. #aahsastronomy @ JuniataElementarySchool

Tom Kasner and his wife Karen were back at work this afternoon, adding the stainless steel hardware to our Apollo capsul...
03/05/2020

Tom Kasner and his wife Karen were back at work this afternoon, adding the stainless steel hardware to our Apollo capsule base. Also in the picture, you can see the metal grounding rod Mr. Doug Endler and AASD Maintenance were kind enough to install for us. Thanks everyone!

A lot of our display case lighting was somehow lost during renovations this past summer, but we’ve gotten replacements, ...
03/04/2020

A lot of our display case lighting was somehow lost during renovations this past summer, but we’ve gotten replacements, and will make our displays better than ever! Thanks for your patience. #SpaceRaceMuseum

Had a wonderful visit with Ms. Lauri Mohler’s 4th Grade class last week, during which we learned about animal astronauts...
03/03/2020

Had a wonderful visit with Ms. Lauri Mohler’s 4th Grade class last week, during which we learned about animal astronauts and the wintertime sky. Students had time for Q&A, and their questions were detailed and thought-provoking. They even got to try on real astronaut gloves as a special treat. Keep up the great work, Juniata 4th grade! @ JuniataElementarySchool

Adult PIZZA PARTY about to go down during the final night of our 9-week “Mystery of Apollo” course! #safetyfirst #domino...
03/02/2020

Adult PIZZA PARTY about to go down during the final night of our 9-week “Mystery of Apollo” course! #safetyfirst #dominospizza

Neil Armstrong Planetarium: We order popcorn by the 50 lb bag, and don’t think twice about it. #poppin #reppin
03/02/2020

Neil Armstrong Planetarium: We order popcorn by the 50 lb bag, and don’t think twice about it. #poppin #reppin

Despite a blizzard, we had nearly 50 guests and AAHS Astronomy Club students make our “Mountain Pies and Night Skies” ni...
02/29/2020

Despite a blizzard, we had nearly 50 guests and AAHS Astronomy Club students make our “Mountain Pies and Night Skies” night a success! Thanks to presenter Tim Gleason, who guided guests in creation of their own spectroscopes, Tom Kasner who was back in the Observatory, and the Fort’s own Karen Morrow, who oversaw the evening. Great people, great Astronomy. @ Fort Roberdeau

Astronomy Club is the most elite club of AAHS 😎#toughingoutthecold #fortroberdeauteam #yummymountainpies 👽🪐🌙✨☄️ 🚀 🔥
02/28/2020

Astronomy Club is the most elite club of AAHS 😎#toughingoutthecold #fortroberdeauteam #yummymountainpies 👽🪐🌙✨☄️ 🚀 🔥

Sooooooon. #mountainpies #nightskiee
02/28/2020

Sooooooon. #mountainpies #nightskiee

02/27/2020

Don’t forget! “Mountain Pies and Night Skies” this Friday, February 28th, at White Oak Hall and the Mt. Lion Observatory at Fort Roberdeau. Hope to see you there!

Friday, February 28, 2020:  Mountain Pies and Night SkiesHost:  Mr. Tim Gleason, Eberly College of Science, Office of Sc...
02/20/2020

Friday, February 28, 2020: Mountain Pies and Night Skies

Host: Mr. Tim Gleason, Eberly College of Science, Office of Science Outreach, Penn State University

Cost: $4.00/adult, $3.00/student

Time: 6:00 PM

The heart of February brings with it our most breathtaking views of the skies of winter! Join us at 6:00 PM in White Oak Hall where our guest speaker - Mr. Tim Gleason - will lead guests through an interactive inside presentation, with participants building and taking home free spectroscopes with them as parting gifts. Then warm up outside around campfires overlooking the Fort. Toast pizza or cheese mountain pies - or bring your own toppings - and finish with a classic S'more. Bundle up and trek down to the Observatory as we star hop through darkened skies containing stellar nurseries, star clusters, and even the exploded remains of a once-massive star.

Vintage Altoona Area High School, courtesy of the Regis Huschak collection. This book is a PHENOMENAL read, and still hi...
02/16/2020

Vintage Altoona Area High School, courtesy of the Regis Huschak collection. This book is a PHENOMENAL read, and still highly accurate today.

Honestly, things are still happening at the Planetarium! Used previous in-service time today to reattach historical news...
02/13/2020

Honestly, things are still happening at the Planetarium! Used previous in-service time today to reattach historical newspapers and magazines to the wall, after allllllll 75+ of them had to be removed for painting and renovation. #whew

We are so excited to partner with Jr.’s Garage in Bellwood for the restoration of this rare Lunar Rover tire, which was ...
02/03/2020

We are so excited to partner with Jr.’s Garage in Bellwood for the restoration of this rare Lunar Rover tire, which was intended for one of the unflown Apollo missions! Jr. and his son Danny are designing a special rim that will allow guests to spin the tire in an interactive display.

(They are also pretty much the best mechanics on Earth.)

Sooooooooon. #Apollo21 @ Blairsville, Pennsylvania
01/29/2020

Sooooooooon. #Apollo21 @ Blairsville, Pennsylvania

Finally starting to resemble a museum again! Thank you for your patience during this renovation. #AAHSastronomy @ Neil A...
01/18/2020

Finally starting to resemble a museum again! Thank you for your patience during this renovation. #AAHSastronomy @ Neil Armstrong Planetarium

When you’ve got to disassemble some vintage Apollo artwork because a bug picked it as the perfect place to bite the dust...
01/17/2020

When you’ve got to disassemble some vintage Apollo artwork because a bug picked it as the perfect place to bite the dust. #smallmuseumstruggles #AAHSastronomy

Well hello there. #newaddition #NASA #MMU #AAHSastronomy
01/11/2020

Well hello there. #newaddition #NASA #MMU #AAHSastronomy

Soooooooon. #Apollo21 #AAHSastronomy @ Neil Armstrong Planetarium
01/10/2020

Soooooooon. #Apollo21 #AAHSastronomy @ Neil Armstrong Planetarium

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Altoona, PA
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Comments

I was wondering if your boilerplate is on this list.
Even though the Moon was so bright, we tried to catch a glimpse of the Perseids Meteor Shower last night. The highlight was that we saw an amazing fireball that left a long bright trail in the sky. The trail remaind long enough in the sky to be able to point it out to others! It was somewhere between 1:20am and 1:45am Sunday night into Monday. Did anyone else see it??? Thanks to all of you and your programs at the Planetarium and Observatiory our 11 year old and 5 year year old boys have shown great interest in the night sky!
Will there be any events to watch the Perseids meteor shower on it's peak nights of Aug 11-12 & 12-13? (maybe better show 12-13)
Hello everyone I will be hosting a live Open House meet and greet to help Home Educators, Military members and Missionaries share ideas, teach, keep in touch, etc. The live chat rooms/presentation rooms hold up to 500 participants. Please let me know if you would like to join.
My friend, Karen, wants to come to a sky show with her kids. When is the next one?
when is your next public sky show?
I loved going to the planetarium when I was a student.
Wanted to give a shout out to Mr. James Krug, the parties involved at Fort Roberdeau Historical Site, the AASD students, and the other friends, volunteers, and support personnel that help make the “Haunted Tours” possible! The event was a blast, and was done quite professionally “scares, screams, and scenes” but (no physical contact)-professional! Again thank you to everyone involved, you (pl.) should be proud of yourselves for putting on such a great event! -Justin Cooney (2006 AASD Alumni)
Hello, am enquiring to know: Is Mr Neil Armstrong still alive? Pls extend my well wishes to him