Home Planetarium — It might be hard to believe but there is enough entertainment in the night sky to replace at least some of the time kids spend with Facebook, video games, television and movies. See, I said it would be hard to believe! The stars and planets provide a different type of theater, and they can be explored without the cost of an expensive telescope or an expensive trip to a planetarium.
Of course, if you have access to a great telescope and a clear night sky that is the ultimate thrill. But for a smaller budget or a cloudy night, or just for fun in a cozy indoors environment, kids can take a tour of the solar system with a home planetarium.
A home planetarium is many things. Its most obvious use is as an educational tool. Children (and adults) can learn about the location of stars, planets, and constellations. It is an excellent way to discover the nine planets for kids. However, a home planetarium can also be a place of tranquility and peace, where you can rest in the awe and wonder of how the Lord put all the stars and planets in their perfect places… if only we could get the earth to be so perfect!
A home planetarium can begin with a visit to the library to find out how to make your own. Or you can shop online to buy a new one. At the library, you can find books on stars and constellations, star maps, and even stories about the history of astronomy. Astronomy has many historical roots in Greek tradition, as well as the Middle Ages and the early modern era. You can find books about stars and planets for kids.
The simplest home planetarium can be made out of an old cardboard oatmeal tube. Using a variety of pins and needles, poke holes in the top or bottom of the tube. Use a book or star map as a guide to create constellations, stars, and planets. Turn off all the lights in a small bedroom or bathroom and cover any windows with a heavy curtain.
Typically, a bathroom has fewer windows, but you may need to test your planetarium in multiple rooms. Mount a flashlight inside the oatmeal tube. Again, you may have to test your planetarium with different flashlights of differing levels of brightness. It may take a few attempts before you are able to accurately recreate the night skies, but this method costs virtually nothing.
The next step up is to use a low-cost cardboard globe. You will have to cut a hole in the base of the globe. Again, use pins and needles to poke holes in the globe that correspond with stars and planets. Use a flashlight or a flashlight bulb in a darkened room to create light within your planetarium.
With patience, a more accurate planetarium can be created with a metal earth globe. Though you may be able to find one of these globes for a low cost, it will cost more than a cardboard globe. You will need an electric drill with drill bits in a variety of sizes to accurately portray the stars and planets. Using your star maps and a marker, you can label the stars on the globe before you begin drilling.
Like the cardboard globe, you will need to cut a hole in the base of the globe where you can mount a flashlight or flashlight bulb in your planetarium. You will need to devote much time and patience to create this planetarium, but it will be durable and you will be able to use it for many years.
A home planetarium can bring the night skies to kids who otherwise might not notice the beauty and wonder that surrounds them. With a little creativity, a darkened bedroom can be filled with stars and planets for kids. It can even provide the catalyst to encourage a child to study astronomy!
Have you ever wondered if there is life on Mars? What are the rings around Saturn? How much would you weigh if you landed on Jupiter, the largest planet of the Solar System? On which planet would humans be the most likely to survive? What do the surfaces of planets look like?
You will be glad to know that a planets DVD called “3D Astronomer” has numerous guided tours of the Universe as well as a software that simulates a spacecraft flight into outer space. Using the space simulator software present on this planets DVD, you can sail through the entire Solar System and beyond.
You can even sail beyond the Milky Way. This enables you to discover the mysteries of the entire universe – the Sun, the Moon, the Planets, the natural satellites of all the planets, the Stars, the outer galaxies, and all other known celestial bodies.
This Planets DVD contains real data that has been collected by NASA from the numerous space exploration missions, and by the European Space Agency (ESA) from its Hippacros (High Precision Parallax Collection Satellite) Astrometry Project. You will find real, high resolution images taken from space exploration missions, powerful telescopes, and man-made satellites. The surface images of various planets and their moons are truly breathtaking and have been taken by various space probes.
Your journeys to the planets will be made exciting by guided tours, which will keep you thrilled for weeks or even months. The astronomical software present on this planets DVD will enable you to see how a planet might have looked in the past. It will also enable you to see how a planet might look in the future. You can view a planet from multiple angles in outer space. This creates an awesome three-dimensional view of the planet.
Actually the 3D Astronomer Planets DVD is not just about the planets. It is about the entire universe. It contains data about the Sun, the Moon, the moons of all the planets, 3840 near-earth asteroids, comets, meteors, more than 100,000 stars, distant galaxies, red dwarfs, white dwarfs, red giants, quasars, pulsars, black holes, and everything else that is known about the universe.
You can have fun with this planets DVD or you can use it to gain an in-depth knowledge about the universe. It is used by experts such as professional astronomers and astrophysicists. However its ease of use makes it very popular among amateur astronomers and among children who love the night-sky and want to learn astronomy.
It is a great educational tool that makes learning astronomy fun. Unlike a dumb computer game, this application is full of informative facts that are often amazing. Some facts are so amazing you will have to agree that sometimes truth is stranger than fiction!
You get life time free updates and upgrades on this planets DVD. It can be delivered to your doorstep or you can download the contents of this planets DVD in a few minutes from the Internet.
Not long ago, a dwarf planet was a cosmic joke for most people. Of the nine planets everyone got to know during science class, the smallest and most distant – Pluto – was simply considered just that, slightly diminutive. Once Eris entered the field in 2005 (discovered in Cal Tech labs), there was a major problem. Though it was larger than Pluto, few scientists thought of giving Eris full planetary status. Thus, both became what is known as dwarf planets.
The Reasoning Behind Dwarf Planet Status
Rather than upset the entire way we conceive of the solar system, astronomers believed the move to make was to designate Pluto (which has a moon nearly the same size as the planet itself) a dwarf planet. While disagreements with this verdict have been lodged ever since the discovery of Eris, it appears Pluto will never regain its footing among the solar system’s elite celestial bodies. In total, only five bodies are recognized as dwarf planets, with Ceres, Makemake and Haumea rounding out the list.
Understanding the Fall of Pluto
For a planet to be on the same level as, say, Earth and Neptune, it must be able to dominate its area in an unmistakable way. Pluto’s position and prominence in the Kuiper Belt don’t quite add up to these criteria. Consider the size and position of its moon Charon.
Charon isn’t much smaller than Pluto and travels in retrograde orbit with the dwarf planet. Pluto’s dominance of the body is thus called into question. Compared to Neptune, thought to have pulled dwarf planet Triton into its midst as a moon, has a much greater power. Pulling Triton closer gravitationally will allow Neptune to eventually have the moon within its sphere – the destruction of Triton is expected to occur at exactly this moment.
Pluto cannot wield the same kind of force in the Kuiper Belt, where a dark flurry of asteroids and comets are observed. Pluto, Charon and Eris dominate the area on some level, but only at a slightly greater level than other Kuiper Belt bodies.
The Entry of Eris to the Field
Despite the size of Eris, it was never a candidate to be named the solar system’s tenth planet. Comparing the mass of Eris to Pluto, the former is the clear winner. Eris has more rock within its core and thus less transitory materials, such as ice. Eris makes its orbit around the sun in an even more extended trip, taking 550+ years to complete the cycle.
Ceres, Haumea and Makemake
The remaining three dwarf planets will likely have planets join their company in the coming decades. As of now, Ceres, Haumea and Makemake complete the list.
Hammea, a spherical ice-covered dwarf, has nearly the same width as Pluto and travels at a very rapid speed. Because a powerful form of energy must be behind this orbit, scientists posit that large stores of radioactive material are present underneath Haumea’s surface.
Makemake has a brightness to the eye and overall size much like that of Pluto, yet resides further from the sun than its Kuiper Belt neighbor. There have been no moons identified near Haumea.
Ceresmakes its orbit far from the Kuiper Belt, closer to the asteroids near Mars and Jupiter. Because of the contents of this dwarf planet, many believe it had the potential to be a real planet before Jupiter controlled the asteroid belt.
While the list of dwarf planets will likely grow, these five celestial bodies continue to spark controversy and debate within the scientific community.