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.
September 5, 2015 - May 7, 2016
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.
November 20, 2015 - February 27, 2016
Fridays & Saturdays, 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Join our astronomers in the Crosby Observatory for a night full of wonder. Enjoy views of the celestial objects while you take in the glittering Orlando skyline. Peer through the powerful, 10-inch lens of the refractor telescope to view the planets like Jupiter, Mars and Venus and deep sky objects such as galaxies, nebulas and more. This activity is weather-permitting.
Please note admission to the Science Center can be purchased until 9:00 p.m. Guests already in the building are welcome to enjoy the observatory until 10:00pm.
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.
24 July 2012
Posted in Crosby Observatory
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.