(Editor's note: This post was updated to correct location of event)
From afar, shimmering stars set in the night sky seem peaceful and tranquil. However, telescopic images can paint a different picture, showing us star “oddities.” For instance, older stars can become unstable and even explode. Many stars have doubles; there’s at least one instance of a person describing a “star within a star.”
Some stars are outright dangerous, too. In 2004, a star exploding over 50,000 light-years away affected Earth’s atmosphere and another potentially hazardous star could send a burst of gamma rays directly towards us.
Mt. Hood Community College Planetarium Sky Theater Director Pat Hanrahan will present “Space Oddities: Stars That Are Stranger Than Fiction” on Tuesday, Nov. 6, and Friday, Nov. 9, with shows at 6 and 7:15 p.m. on both days on the MHCC campus in Gresham. Hanrahan will also identify stars in the current night sky and show observers where to find some of these curious stars and other attractions.
Visitors are encouraged to ask questions during each 45-minute live program. Children are welcome to attend.