Home > Ephemeris Program, NASA, Planets, Pluto > 03/09/2017 – Ephemeris – More on the definition of a planet controversy

03/09/2017 – Ephemeris – More on the definition of a planet controversy

March 9, 2017

Ephemeris for Thursday, March 9th.  The Sun will rise at 7:05.  It’ll be up for 11 hours and 35 minutes, setting at 6:41.  The Moon, 3 days before full, will set at 6:03 tomorrow morning.

Last Friday’s Weekly Space Hangout, on Google Hangouts featured Dr. Alan Stern, principal Investigator of the New Horizons Mission to Pluto and beyond.  Dr. Stern considers himself a planetary scientist, rather than an astronomer, and doesn’t much care for the IAU or International Astronomical Union’s definition of a planet.  To him and other planetary scientists: if it’s round and not a star… it’s a planet.  They’re are more concerned about what it is than where it is, or what it’s orbiting.  Planetary science encompasses geology, climatology,  chemistry, and astrobiology among others.  For instance astrobiology is looking at the origin of life on the Earth and looking for life on other worlds like the planet Mars and at least three moons, Jupiter’s Europa and Saturn’s Enceladus and Titan.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Check out last Friday’s Weekly Space Hangout here

For the latest on astronomical, space events and discoveries this is a good place to go.

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