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10 Things for the Week of May 5 - 11
Columnist: Autumn Burdick

10 Things for the Week of May 5 - 11
3 May 2013

1. CATCHING CONSTELLATIONS

Our very own Jane Houston Jones explains how to use the moon to spot some significant constellations this month.

2. METEOR SHOWER

The Eta Aquarid meteor shower peaks on Sunday (May 5). Get up before dawn and look East to catch this sky show courtesy of Halley's comet.

3. OH MY DARLING
Nineteen years ago this week, the Clementine Lunar Orbiter, the first U.S. lunar mission in over two decades, left the moon en route to an asteroid. A computer malfunction doomed the bonus asteroid mission, but Clementine did contribue the finding of water ice on the moon.

4. PSYCHEDELIC SATURN

NASA's long-lived Cassini orbiter has been busy lately with new science discoveries and amazing images of the ringed giant and its intriguing moons.

5. EXPENSIVE VACATION

Twelve years ago on May 6, the world's first space vacation ended. Space tourist Dennis Tito returned to Earth in the Soyuz TM-31 spacecraft with it's Russian crew after spending more than a week on the International Space Station.

6. FIVE DECADES OF EXPLORATION

We're well into our 50th year out there exploring our cosmic neighborhood. Check out the best images and stories from five decades beyond Earth orbit.

7. SOLAR ECLIPSE

If you're reading this from Down Under or somewhere in the South Pacific, look for an annular solar eclipse on May 10.

8. LIGHT THOSE CANDLES

On May 11, thousands of student teams launch model rockets for scholarship money in one of the largest science competitions in the world.

9. "RULES OF THE GAME"

Raise a virtual glass on May 11 to physicist Richard Feynman, who laid out the first rules of quantum mechanics. "We can imagine that this complicated array of moving things which constitute 'the world' is something like a great chess game being played by the gods, and we are observers of the game. We do not know what the rules of the game are; all we are allowed to do is to watch the playing. Of course, if we watch long enough, we may eventually catch on to a few of the rules. The rules of the game are what we mean by fundamental physics."

10. STAR PARTIES

It's a good week for star parties. Here are a few:


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About: Autumn Burdick
Photo of Autumn Burdick
Autumn is the science writer who enjoys bringing this weekly look at upcoming events and stories from around our solar system to you. Follow SSE on Twitter: @NASASolarSystem
Read More by Autumn Burdick
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Last Updated: 3 May 2013