Edelman Planetarium presents “Rising Star” to show constellations, planets and more

Every Sunday this fall semester, the Ric Edelman Planetarium will present “Rising Star.” The hour-long show highlights South African facilities that house some of the most technologically advanced telescopes. These telescopes showed scientists objects in space that would otherwise be unimaginable without them.

The show started with curator Charles Hughes projecting the night sky above to show what people don’t often see due to light pollution. To be able to see the stars so clearly and have the ability to zoom in on the recreation of our solar system is a completely captivating experience.

The public could see constellations such as the Big Dipper and the Little Dipper, Sagittarius, the big and the little dipper, O’Rien and many others. Additionally, we were able to zoom in on photos of Jupiter and Saturn, two planets that can usually appear as dots in the night sky and, of course, the moon.

Additionally, viewers got to see Cigar Galaxy (Messier 82), Bode’s Galaxy (Messier 81), and learn about a host of stars, moons, planets, and even black holes.

Soorya Baliga, a first-year Psychological Science and Mathematics student, came to see the show and shared what it was like to have this immersive experience.

“I thought it was really beautiful,” Baliga said. “I liked how they showed us the night sky today before showing the movie, because it helped ground us and understand what we understand about the universe today, and then the film showed us what we will understand in the future.”

“Rising Star” is narrated by Katlego Maboe, directed by Telmo dos Reis and produced by Daniel Cunnama.

“It’s a really interesting show because it not only addresses the developments that are happening in this area, but also the culture and wildlife of this whole area which is really interesting,” Hughes said.

It began by showing a depiction of a folk theory of star making. It was a heartwarming tale that depicted a young woman throwing dust particles into the sky, creating the stars in order to guide her tribesmen to her.

The film then goes on to show the most powerful radio telescope located in the southern hemisphere, known as MeerKAT. It also showed unrestricted images that had been captured by South Africa’s Large 10 Meter Class Telescope. The images captured were more than stunning and if looking up into the night sky wasn’t enough to convince you to watch this sight, these images are absolutely worth it.

You have the chance to learn how multi-wavelength and multi-messenger astronomy works, and what this means for the future of space knowledge. It was really fascinating to gain a new understanding of how different types of technology can work together to create better, clearer images.

All in all, it was a beautifully immersive experience that every astronomy enthusiast should see. With tickets priced at $3 for Rowan students and $5 for non-students, it’s an inexpensive way to enjoy an hour of enjoyable entertainment.

The Edelman Planetarium doesn’t stop at space shows. They also offer a multitude of different types of shows, including laser light shows tailored to the music of specific artists. Plus, there are shows for families and others on the moon.

Discover their website and check out their holiday program, which will include laser light experiences paired with popular Christmas songs and stargazing in the winter sky.

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Arline J. Mercier