Science Night this week celebrates the 25th anniversary of one of NASA’s most beloved projects – the Hubble Space Telescope – on NOVA. Plus: the final installment of Nature’s Animal Homes, and the story of Hitler’s Seigfried Line.
Nature Animal Homes: Animal Cities at 7 pm
For some animals, living in the midst of huge colonies of their own kind is the most secure and rewarding housing arrangement. Icelandic puffins form nesting colonies of more than a million, providing shared information about food sources and reducing the odds of attacks on individual birds. But colonies are useful for predators, too. Social spiders in Ecuador work together to capture prey 20 times the size an individual might subdue on its own.
NOVA Invisible Universe Revealed at 8 pm
Twenty-five years ago, NASA launched one of the most ambitious experiments in the history of astronomy: the Hubble Space Telescope. In honor of Hubble’s landmark anniversary, NOVA tells the remarkable story of the telescope that forever changed our understanding of the cosmos and our place in it. From its inception through its early days, when a one-millimeter engineering blunder turned the telescope into an object of ridicule, to the five heroic astronaut missions that returned Hubble to the cutting edge of science, NOVA hears from the scientists and engineers on the front line who tell the amazing Hubble story as never before.
Nazi Mega Weapons: The Siegfried Line at 9 pm
Five times the length of Hadrian’s Wall, Hitler’s Siegfried Line was one of the greatest fortifications in the history of warfare. The campaign to breach it took six months and cost the American forces close to 140,000 casualties. This is the story of the men who built it and those who gave their lives fighting to defend it and destroy it.