The aluminum-domed Crosby Observatory atop Orlando Science Center houses Florida's largest publicly accessible refractor telescope. This one-of-a-kind custom-built telescope, along with several smaller scopes, are available at selected times for solar and night sky viewing.

Peer through the powerful, 10-inch lens of the refractor telescope to view the planets, the four moons of Jupiter, the rings of Saturn and deep sky objects such as galaxies, nebulas and double stars.

All activities and events in the Crosby Observatory
are weather permitting only.

  

SunWatch

October 4, 2014 - May 2, 2015
First Saturday of every month, 3:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Safely gaze upon the closest star to our home planet - the Sun. Our astronomers take aim at the sun to reveal the secrets hidden behind its glare. Take a peek at the Sun’s surface to see what kind of day the sun is having. Sometimes the surface is placid and serene but more often than not, it is boiling with sunspots and solar flares.

 

Science Night Live

Seasonal Event: Please Check Events Calendar

An “adult swim” of the science variety, the event features everything great about the Science Center. Experience all four floors of exhibits, films and hands-on programming aimed specifically for grown-ups, while enjoying adult food and beverages available for purchase. Must be 21 and older.

 

A new planet has been discovered recently by researchers at the University of Central Florida.

The planet, named UCF-1.01, is 33 light-years away in the constellation Leo the Lion. While scientists have been able to confirm that more than 700 exoplanets (planets outside of our solar system) have been found since 1995, many of them have been much larger than Jupiter. This new planet, however, may only be 5,200 miles across – about two thirds the size of Earth.

The planet currently orbits a star called GJ 436, and researchers at UCF have spent the last year watching it to confirm that it was indeed a distant planet. UCF-1.01 is not quite a hospitable planet for humans, as researchers calculate that it whisks around its host star in 1.4 Earth days and at a distance of about 1.6 million miles; Earth is about 93 million miles from our sun. Temperatures more than likely exceed 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit which raises the probability that the surface of UCF-1.01 is molten (covered in lava) and any atmosphere would have been boiled away long ago.

Still, there are many things scientists don’t know about UCF-1.01 such as its mass and physical appearance, which are difficult to calculate due to its distance. As it stands, technology is a long ways away from determining the answers to these questions, so it may be "light-years" before we know more about this astonishing discovery.

ucf1.01


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Before the invention of telescopes, viewing stars was a difficult task because they blurred together in a white streak formation across the sky. An ancient Greek myth states that this white streak was coined ‘Via Galactica’ or “road made of milk” and is how our galaxy came to be known as the Milky Way.

Milky_Way

Our solar system, along with hundreds of billions of stars, clouds of dust and gases lie throughout our Milky Way Galaxy. Imagine the galaxy like a pancake being stretched, with a huge bulge forming in the center. From there, huge groups of stars and dust particles fan out from the center, generating a spiral of curving, coiled and patterned arms.

Sometimes parts of the Milky Way can be viewed with the naked eye. On very clear, dark nights it appears as a band of milky starlight stretching across the sky. So the next time you look up at the night sky, you will know that the Milky Way is so much more than a candy bar!


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777 E. Princeton Street • Orlando, Florida 32803 • Phone: 407.514.2000 • TTY: 407.514.2005 • Toll Free: 888.OSC.4FUN • Email: gservices@osc.org
  Orlando Science Center is supported by United Arts of Central Florida, host of power2give.org/centralflorida and the collaborative Campaign for the Arts.
This project is funded in part by Orange County Government through the Arts & Cultural Affairs Program. Privacy Policy • Accessibility

A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION FOR ORLANDO SCIENCE CENTER, A FLORIDA-BASED NONPROFIT CORPORATION (REGISTRATION NO. CH2342), MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE OR VISITING THEIR WEBSITE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.