The Santa Monica College John Drescher Planetarium will hold three feature shows — as well as the popular Night Sky Show — on Friday evenings in February. The shows will look at NASA’s Project Artemis to return to the Moon, and present updates on a variety of developments in space exploration.

The feature shows are at 8 p.m. and are preceded by “The Night Sky Show” at 7 p.m. with the latest news in astronomy and space exploration, a family-friendly “tour” of the constellations, and the chance to ask astronomy-related questions.

The February shows are:

• “Project Artemis: NASA’s Return to the Moon” on February 7 — The Trump administration announced a refocus of NASA crewed spaceflight on a return to lunar surface operations, with the goal of landing on the Moon in 2024 using the third flight of the SLS/Orion system, now being called Artemis 3. The show will cover the mission architecture and rationale, and the work that must be done to accomplish everything in a short time frame.

• “2020: Space Exploration Preview” on February 21 and 28 — An overview of the coming year’s multiple missions setting out for Mars, the samples taken from asteroids, a new solar probe launch, the first lunar sample return mission since the 1970s, and the first crewed flights of two American commercial crew taxis for the International Space Station.

The John Drescher Planetarium, which features a Digistar projection system, is located near the elevators on the second floor of Drescher Hall on the main SMC campus (1900 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica). Tickets are available at the door and cost $11 ($9 seniors and children) for the evening’s scheduled “double bill,” or $6 ($5 seniors age 60+ and children age 12 and under) for a single show or telescope-viewing session.

Please call 310-434-3005 or see smc.edu/eventsinfo or smc.edu/planetarium for information. All shows subject to change or cancellation without notice.

Santa Monica College is a California Community College accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

Submitted by Grace Smith, SMC Public Information Officer

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