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Death Valley claims the world record for hottest temperature

SACRAMENTO, CA    Death Valley, California is known for its extreme heat. It holds the all-time record high for the United States and now it holds the world record.

The hottest temperature didn't occur today in the midst of this late summer heat. It actually occurred on July 10, 1913 when Death Valley hit a high temperature of 134 degrees.

The previous record was held by El Azizia, Libya when the thermometer hit 136 degrees at an Italian army base. Several pieces of documentation didn't add up to the extreme reading though and had long been debated.

After an in-depth investigation, meteorologists at the World Meteorological Organization felt there was enough persuading evidence to overturn the previous record.

Blue Moon appears Friday night

SACRAMENTO, CA - Friday night will bring the second full moon of the month. This is popularly referred to as a blue moon, but this definition has only recently come about.

It was perpetuated by a 1946 article in Sky & Telescope magazine. The traditional definition comes from the Maine Farmer's Almanac. It states that the blue moon is the third full moon in a season of four full moons. So why two definitions?

The more recent definition was a mistake. An amateur astronomer, James Hugh Pruett, mistakenly wrote an erroneous definition some 60 years ago in Sky & Telescope magazine. The author referred to the second full moon of the month as a "blue Moon." The idea caught on and spread, so much so that most people use this definition over the traditional one relating to the Christian calendar.