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Glenn Chaple's observing basics: The wow factor

June 2006: Let me introduce you to a draw-dropping object.
In spring 1993, I hosted an informal star party for a group of my 8th-grade science students. Following the "wow" principle described here last month, I began with the Moon. As expected, the students' first close-up views of this magnificent, cratered world elicited gasps of awe and wonder. Next on the docket was Jupiter. The "wows" continued when I informed the fledgling skygazers that the banded disk they were looking at could hold 1,300 Earths.

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