Small Business Saturday

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Name A Star Live is offered by Space Services, Inc., a small business that’s been launching payloads into space for decades! Take advantage of our Small Business Saturday sale and save 30% when you name a star! Good this Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 26 and 27, 2017.

Name A Star Live is the only star naming service that launches your star name into space! First, we provide you a letter-size Star Certificate that displays the name of your star, your star’s astronomical coordinates, and a personal message you write for your gift recipient. After we launch your star name, you get a  letter-size, Digital Launch Certificate confirming that your star name was part of a real space mission. You can even watch the launch online. What a wonderful Christmas gift!

A family stargazingWe offer 2 types of gifts:

  • Our Instant Gifts are provided to you via the Internet: Download, Print and Give right away, 24/7!
  • Our Keepsake Gifts are printed and shipped to you or to your gift recipient. We offer free Priority Mail shipping to U.S. addresses.

 

Featured Gift Set

Name A Star Live Ultimate Children's Gift Set
The Ultimate Children’s Gift Set. Click to see larger image.

Inspire your child and help them sleep with ease with the Ultimate Children’s Gift Set. Name A Star Live’s Twilight Turtle projects three constellations while the shell lights up to highlight five endangered sea animals. Any child would love to find this gift under the Christmas tree!

In addition to the Twilight Turtle Star Projector, the Ultimate Children’s Gift Set includes:

  • A letter-size, Framed Star Certificate, showing the name of your star, your star’s astronomical coordinates, and a personal message you can write for your gift recipient.
  • A Star Chart showing the location of your star within its constellation (area of the night sky, such as Aries or Taurus). You get to choose the constellation for your star.
  • Our award-winning Virtual Planetarium astronomy software that brings astronomy to life with seven great programs in one. Explore the Universe with interactive games, breathtaking NASA imagery, and the latest updates from exciting space missions. Plus see a display of which constellations and planets are visible from your home each night. Suitable for all ages.
Twilight Turtle Star Projector
The Twilight Turtle Star Projector included with the Ultimate Children’s Gift Set

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Black Friday Sale

Buy NowIt’s Black Friday, and you know what that means: Super savings when you name a star! Save 30% with our Black Friday sale — today only, Friday, November 24!

Name A Star Live is the only star naming service that launches your star name into space! First, we provide you a letter-size Star Certificate that displays the name of your star, your star’s astronomical coordinates, and a personal message you write for your gift recipient. After we launch your star name, you get a  letter-size, Digital Launch Certificate confirming that your star name was part of a real space mission. You can even watch the launch online. What a wonderful Christmas gift!

A bright star by a galaxyWe offer 2 types of gifts:

  • Our Instant Gifts are provided to you via the Internet: Download, Print and Give right away, 24/7!
  • Our Keepsake Gifts are printed and shipped to you or to your gift recipient. We offer free Priority Mail shipping to U.S. addresses.

 

Deluxe Gift Set
The Deluxe Gift Set starts at $54.95. Click to see larger image

Featured Gift Set

One of our most popular Keepsake Gifts is the Deluxe Gift Set, which starts at $54.95. Printed and shipped to you or your gift recipient, it includes everything you’ll need to make the stars come alive. It’s a great name-a-star gift for Christmas, Hanukkah, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, a birthday, graduation or any special occasion.

The Deluxe Gift Set includes:

  • A letter-size Star Certificate in display folder showing the name of your star, your star’s astronomical coordinates, and a personal message you can write for your gift recipient.
  • A Star Chart showing the location of your star within its constellation (area of the night sky, such as Aries or Taurus). You get to choose the constellation for your star.
  • Our award-winning Virtual Planetarium astronomy software that brings astronomy to life with seven great programs in one. Explore the Universe with interactive games, breathtaking NASA imagery, and the latest updates from exciting space missions. Plus see a display of which constellations and planets are visible from your home each night. Suitable for all ages.
  • A Digital Launch Certificate provided to you each time we launch your star name into space!
Launch Certificate
You get a Digital Launch Certificate each time we launch your star name into space — with Name A Star Live, you’re made part of real space missions!

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Anniversary Sale!

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It’s Name A Star Live’s Anniversary Sale! We named our first star on November 21, 2004. In celebration, take 30% off the price of any of our gifts now through Thursday, November 23, 2017.

Name A Star Live is the only star naming service that launches your star name into space! First, we provide you a letter-size Star Certificate that displays the name of your star, your star’s astronomical coordinates, and a personal message you write for your gift recipient. After we launch your star name, you get a  letter-size, Digital Launch Certificate confirming that your star name was part of a real space mission. You can even watch the launch online. What a wonderful Christmas gift!

StarWe offer 2 types of gifts:

  • Our Instant Gifts are provided to you via the Internet: Download, Print and Give right away, 24/7!
  • Our Keepsake Gifts are printed and shipped to you or to your gift recipient. We offer free Priority Mail shipping to U.S. addresses.
Star Bear Gift Set
The Star Bear Gift Set starts at $39.95. Click to see larger image.

 

Featured Gift Set

A teddy bear always makes for a lovely Christmas gift. But naming a star really makes that teddy bear special! Let our lovable Star Bear deliver your holiday gift and make a memory that lasts a lifetime.

The Name A Star Live Star Bear Gift Set includes:

  • A loveable, cuddly 6″ bear holding a generic parchment certificate, and adorned with a gold ribbon and star.
  • A 5×7″ Printed Star Certificate displaying the name of your star, your star’s astronomical coordinates, and a personal message you can write for your gift recipient.
  • A letter-size Digital Star Certificate that you can download, print and give right away while your Star Bear and Printed Star Certificate are on the way in the mail.

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See Shooting Stars in Leo this weekend!

The “Leonid meteor shower” peaks this coming weekend! In this article we’ll discuss what a meteor shower is, how to view the shooting stars, and when to view them.

Watching a meteor shower
The best way to view a meteor shower is to lie back and look up — no telescope needed!

Continue reading “See Shooting Stars in Leo this weekend!”

Christmas Shipping Info

The Star Bear Gift Set
The Star Bear Gift Setclick for more info

Name A Star Live offers two types of gifts:

  • Instant Gift Sets — Download, Print and Give 24/7! Provided via the Internet only.
  • Keepsake Gift Sets — Printed and shipped either to you or to your gift recipient. FREE Priority Mail shipping to U.S. addresses! For addresses outside the U.S., we ship via the postal systems of the U.S. and the destination country.

US Postal ServiceShipping Cutoff Time for Keepsake Gifts each business day is 2 PM Central, 3 pm Eastern, 8 pm GMT. All packages are shipped from Houston, Texas, USA. Note that we cannot guarantee delivery time frames.

Keepsake Gift Order Deadlines for Christmas Eve 2017 Delivery

To the 48 Contiguous States:

The Lower 48
The 48 Contiguous States
  • Free Priority Mail — Dec. 20
  • Express Mail — Dec. 22

Alaska: For Alaskan addresses the order deadlines are Dec. 20 for Priority Mail and Dec. 21 for Express Mail.
Hawaii: For Hawaiian addresses the order deadlines are Dec. 15 for Priority Mail and Dec. 20 for Express Mail.
U.S. Military: For most, but not all, U.S. military addresses the order deadlines are Dec. 11 for Priority Mail and Dec. 16 for Express Mail.

To Canada:Canadian flag

  • Priority Mail International — Dec. 9
  • Priority Mail Express International — Dec. 16

To Europe:Europe

  • Priority Mail International — Dec. 9
  • Priority Mail Express International — Dec. 14

To Australia/New Zealand/Asia/Pacific Rim:Pacific Rim

  • Priority Mail International — Dec. 7
  • Priority Mail Express International — Dec. 14

 

For all other destinations, please contact us for order deadlines.

How We Launch Your Star Name Into Space

Name A Star Live launch
Name A Star Live launch on an UP Aerospace SpaceLoft XL rocket from Spaceport America, New Mexico

Name A Star Live launches your star’s name into space, and provides you a launch certificate after each launch occurs.  We’re operated by Space Services, Inc. – a real aerospace company that has been launching payloads into space since 1982. No other Name A Star company has such a record of space launch success.

We’re often asked by our customers how, exactly, we launch the star names.

First, we launch more than just your star’s name: We launch all of the unique information from your Star Certificate, including the star’s name, what the star is named in honor of, the star’s registration date, the message you write for your gift recipient, the star’s astronomical coordinates and your order number.  We save all of this information in our database of stars — our star register, or “archive of star names”: Your star will be assigned the name you give it, and will never be assigned any other name in our star register.

Star Certificate
A Name A Star Live star certificate

Second, for each mission we save our star database onto a data storage device.  We then ship this device to the facility where the rocket is assembled.  Technicians integrate the device into the rocket as a “secondary payload” — we ‘piggyback’ on rockets that carry scientific or communications “primary payloads” into space.  The technicians must integrate the device into the rocket weeks, or even months before liftoff.  So there necessarily is a delay between the time you name your star and the time it is launched.

Chip
Name A Star Live flies its customers’ star names into space using a data storage device, much like NASA did using this chip when it included people’s names on the Mars Curiosity rover.

Scheduling a rocket launch is not like booking a flight on an airplane.  While airline flights may be delayed a few minutes or hours due to weather or other flight delays, normally your airplane flight will take off from your airport at least on the same day your flight is scheduled for departure.  In contrast, rocket launches often are delayed for days, weeks, months or even years due to a variety of technical or other reasons inherent in spaceflight.  You can find information about our upcoming missions by visiting our online launch schedule.

Third, depending on the mission, your star name will:

  • Fly on a brief trip to space and return to Earth,
  • Orbit the Earth (as an “orbital archive”),
  • Fly to the Moon, or
  • Fly into deep space.

In most cases you can attend each launch in person!  Our parent company, Space Services, Inc., has had payloads launched from locations around the world, including: Cape Canaveral, Florida; Spaceport America, New Mexico; Vandenberg Air Force Base, California; New Zealand; and the Marshall Islands.  But if you can’t join us for the launch, you can usually view the launch live via webcast.

No matter the mission, after each liftoff you will receive a letter-size, Digital Launch Certificate confirming that your star name flew in space.  This is provided to you via the Internet: You can even order a Printed or Framed Launch Certificate.  This certificate displays your star’s name and astronomical coordinates, as well as information about the launch.

Launch Certificate
A Name A Star Live launch certificate

Launching your star’s name and other details into space is part of what sets Name A Star Live apart from other star-naming companies: Through our launches, we make the symbolic gesture of naming a star a real and exciting experience!

Shooting Stars in Orion!

The Orion Meteor Shower peaks the morning of Saturday, October 21, 2017. In this article we’ll discuss what a meteor shower is, how to view the meteor shower, and when to view it.

Watching a meteor shower
The best way to view a meteor shower is to lie back in a comfy lawn chair and look up — no telescope needed!

Meteor Showers 101

Halley's Comet
Halley’s Comet left a lot of dust particles in its wake: Every year, Earth flies through those dust particles, which burn up in our atmosphere as “shooting stars.”

Shooting stars are meteors — small pieces of dust in space that quickly burn up in Earth’s atmosphere. The dust particles for the Orion meteor shower (or “the Orionids” for short) are leftover bits of Halley’s Comet. As the Earth orbits the Sun, every year at about this time we pass through the dust left behind by Halley’s many visits to our neck of the galactic woods.

Orion
The most prominent stars of the constellation Orion. Image Credit: NASA

It’s called the “Orionids” because the shooting stars in this meteor shower all appear to fly toward us from the constellation Orion. In classical mythology Orion was a hunter, and is depicted in astronomy as a man wearing a belt of three stars, holding a shield with one arm, and holding a club with his other arm to fight the constellation Taurus (the bull). He’s alternatively depicted as a hunter about shoot an arrow at Taurus.

How to view the meteor shower

So consider going outside under the night sky with your significant other, and make some wishes upon every shooting star you see! No telescope or binoculars needed: Just bring along a lawn chair or long towel on which to lie down. You might want to bring along some food and drink and, depending on where you live in the world, either some mosquito repellant or warm clothing. Then, just look up.

When to look for the Orionids

Under perfect conditions — a clear sky, far from city lights, and viewing just before dawn the morning of October 21 — you might see as many as 20 shooting stars per hour. But you can still see an above average number of shooting stars no matter what time of the night you look. And you should be able to see an above-average number of shooting stars from now through the first week of November.

Clear skies to you!

Fall begins!

Fall begins at 4:02 pm in Eastern, 3:02 pm Central, 1:02 am Pacific, 8:02 pm GMT on September 22, 2017. Here in the northern hemisphere this is called “fall equinox.”

“Equinox” means equal night, because the Sun is exactly over the equator, the Earth’s terminator runs exactly from pole to pole, with all parts of earth receiving 12 hours of daylight and 12 of dark… but wait!  Look at your newspaper.  The time from sunrise to sunset on Sept 23 is actually LONGER than 12 hours, by about 6-7 minutes.  Why?

Equinox
On an equinox, sunlight falls directly over the Earth’s equator.  The “terminator” — the line dividing daylight from nighttime — runs vertically from pole to pole.

Answer:  Actually the answer has two causes.  One is the finite size of the sun.  Sunrise is defined as the first part of the Sun peeking over the Eastern horizon, and sunset as the last part of the Sun slipping below the western horizon.  This is twelve hours PLUS the time that the Sun takes to move its width across the sky.  The Sun is a half-degree across and the Earth rotates 15 degrees per hour (360 degrees in 24 hours), so the Earth rotates a half-degree in two minutes.  So two minutes of the difference is just from the finite size of the Sun.   What is the rest?   REFRACTION.

Light refracts when passing through a medium.  If the medium is uniform, light just slows down a little. But if the medium is not uniform in density or thickness, the light bends.  Since the air is more dense near the Earth’s surface, the light moves more slowly there than in higher elevations, causing the wave front to tip forward, following the curvature of the Earth.  So we actually see the sun BEFORE it actually breaks our horizon, and we see it for a few minutes after sunset too..  And that’s the other 5 minutes!  The refraction depends on the air temperature, surface temperature, etc, but in general is just larger than the diameter of the Sun – we see all of the Sun before any of the Sun really is above the horizon!

More info: www.weather.gov/cle/Seasons and www.timeanddate.com/calendar/september-equinox.html

View the Solar Eclipse anywhere on Monday!

Everybody’s talking about it. It’s going to be one of the most spectacular astronomical events in American history! On Monday, August 21, 2017 a total solar eclipse will be visible along a narrow path going across the U.S., from Oregon to South Carolina. But did you know that you can see at least a partial eclipse that day no matter where you live in North America? And, of course, no matter where you live in the world, you can watch it online.

Global eclipse map
On August 21 people throughout North America, Central America and northern South America will see at least a partial eclipse of the Sun, weather permitting. Image Credit: NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio

As viewed from land, the total solar eclipse (“totality,” where the Moon completely covers the Sun) begins near Lincoln City, Oregon, at 10:15 a.m. PDT (1:15 p.m. EDT). Totality ends at 2:48 p.m. EDT near Charleston, South Carolina. That roughly 70-mile wide path is represented by the darkest line in the image above. But those above and below the path of totality can see a partial eclipse of the Sun, weather permitting. Continue reading “View the Solar Eclipse anywhere on Monday!”

See shooting stars this weekend!

The famous “Perseid meteor shower” peaks this coming weekend! In this article we’ll discuss what a meteor shower is, the mythology behind the “Perseids,” how to view the shooting stars, and when to view them.

Watching a meteor shower
The best way to view a meteor shower is to lie back and look up — no telescope needed!

Continue reading “See shooting stars this weekend!”