July 4, 2012
Re "Long night? It was, by a second," July 1 You tell us that timekeepers have added a leap second to our clocks to match the Earth's spin, saying we are rotating "a bit slowly. " The phrase should have been that we are rotating a bit slower and will continue to do so. The moon, which has a tremendous gravitational effect on our planet, is moving away at the rate of nearly three inches per year, and as it does so, Earth's spin slows. The moon, which is now 240,000 miles away, was created when the Earth was young, and it loomed as a giant in our skies, being only a few thousand miles away.
October 25, 2012 |
Not long ago, while sorting through old books, I found a copy of Eric Carle's “Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me,” dedicated to his daughter Kirsten and first published in 1986. This was one of my favorite books to read to my son Noah when he was little, the story of a father, his daughter Monica and the moon. Part of what attracted me to the book was what attracted me to pretty much every other Carle title I can remember - its quality of tactile interaction, of literally pulling its readers in. And yet "Papa" is different, because the story it tells, with its various fold-ins and fold-outs, is not about a hungry caterpillar or a grouchy ladybug, but rather about a father so in love with his child that he will do anything for her, even capture the moon.
July 2, 2013 |
All the Pledge in the world couldn't keep the dust off a lunar rover parked in the wrong part of the moon, according to a new study. Presenting at a meeting of the Royal Astronomical Society in Scotland, Farideh Honary of the University of Lancaster used computer simulations to show that moon dust becomes electrically charged, like a plasma, in a region of the moon called “the terminator.” This region is at the boundary between night and...
November 19, 2009
'The Twilight Saga: New Moon' MPAA rating: PG-13 for some violence and action Running time: 2 hours, 10 minutes Playing: In general release
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 1, 2010 |
New Year's Eve celebrations were a bit brighter this year with a blue moon shining in the sky Thursday night. A blue moon -- the second full moon in a month -- isn't really uncommon, occurring on average every 2 1/2 years. But "on New Year's Eve it is very rare," said Scott Kardel, a spokesman for the Palomar Observatory in San Diego County. The last one was in 1990. The name is a bit misleading -- the moon does not appear blue. Rather, the name refers to the expression "once in a blue moon."
November 8, 2009 |
James May begins his new documentary, "James May on the Moon" (BBC America, 8 p.m. Tuesday), where he belongs: in a car, on the ground. He's a host of "Top Gear," the cheeky British automobile variety show, and on that show, he passes for unambitious, the lumbering turtle up against Jeremy Clarkson's fox and Richard Hammond's rabbit. But May, it turns out, wants to go faster than any "Top Gear" segment could allow. A space enthusiast, he's used his bully pulpit to film "James May on the Moon," about the Apollo moon landings and his fascination with Earth's satellite, where -- spoiler alert -- he does not in fact end up. This extravagant hourlong program is actually three documentaries in one, leaving what must certainly be a tremendous amount of footage unused.