Auburn Astronomical Society E-Newsletter
In this Issue
We’ll hold our March meeting on Friday, March 6, at 7:45PM in room 215 of Davis Hall, the Aerospace Engineering Building. The doors to the building automatically lock at 8:00PM, so if you’re running late, rap on the door nearest our meeting room and we’ll let you in.
Our new moon star party this month will be on Saturday, March 28, and will be in conjunction with our Forest Preserve stargaze at the Mary Olive Thomas Demonstration Forest (see below).
March 1-15, Venus gets closer/larger. Crescent
phase visible in binoculars
Jason Hill, Ray Kunert, Mike Holley, Jennifer Reuss, Perry Myer, Charles Floyd, and Joe Albree have renewed their memberships. We also welcome Aniket Shirgaokar as a new member. This brings our 2009 membership to twenty-one.
New on mail list:
Elliot Errera wrote:
I recently moved to Auburn, to work as a mainframe Computer Programmer for Northrop Grumman. I've always had an interest in astronomy. I thought that now would be a good time to get involved.
I'm Denise and my husband, Jim, and daughter, Maggie are new to Auburn. My husband is a fisheries faculty member. Maggie has always been fascinated with the night sky and asked for a telescope from Santa. we, uh, I mean Santa gave her a Bushnell 525 X 3 Voyager Reflecting scope (We got a phenomenal price and it came recommended as a first scope). We went out with the scope to a place near Society Hill last nite to use the scope for the first time.
Just wanted to share some pics. I recently decided to sell the SN10 and go with a refractor for imaging. I've been working on getting my system down and also learning post-processing techniques. Hopefully we'll have good weather this weekend, if so I'll come out for this month's star party. Here's some images taken with the new scope.
In the February Astrofiles, we discussed the possibilities of an expanded role in astronomy education at our Astronomy Day event in recognition of the International Year of Astronomy. We continued the discussion at the February meeting. To be honest, there was not much enthusiasm for an hour or two of lectures. I think one person offered to give a talk. The consensus seemed to be that most of our guests at Astronomy Day come only to look through the telescopes. We’re considering this alternative to the auditorium lectures:
We usually schedule the "Telescope Clinic" at 5:00. In the past, this has been for folks with telescopes that were in need of instruction, repair, or assembly. Rhon suggested that this year, we expand the telescope clinic to include a walking tour of our telescopes, stopping at each for the owner to describe his/her telescope, why they selected the one they did, and its assets and liabilities. If it works out that there are six SCT's, some owners could use their time to explain:
• Why they have a box full of eyepieces and filtersAt five minutes or so at each telescope, we could impart a lot of information about telescopes without taxing the visitors' attention spans, and finish in time for Rick to start the indoor shows at 6:00 . When Rick turns them loose to come back out to the telescopes at 8:00, they should have a better appreciation of what they're looking through.
We still have plenty of time, so if anyone has ideas, we're still open to them. Let us know what you have in mind.
Ira Hostetter has been trying for several months to find a mutually convenient time for AAS and the students at Eastwood School to meet at his home in southern Macon County, for an evening under the stars. In our most recent attempt, Ira suggested Friday, March 27th. He anticipates 20-30 students.
The skies are very dark there. We’ll need 3-4 scopes. Unfortunately, your editor will be out of town that week. If you can help, please let me know so that we can finalize the details.
Jennifer Lolley wrote:
I would like to schedule our next astronomy night. Already have a Scout troop interested. I looked at the calendar and noticed that it is feeling up quick. I would love to have March 28th if possible. April 25th is Auburn City Fest, so I think that would hurt our attendance. If a quarter moon is OK, May 2nd would be another possible date. May 23rd is another possibility. Would you check it out with everybody and give me some dates. The public is already asking about it! Nice to have such a popular event!
Vote for Serenity!!! http://www.nasa.gov/externalflash/name_ISS/index.html
RegiStax 5 (beta) has been released. You can download this latest version free from http://registax.astronomy.net
Comet Lulin finder chart: http://media.skyandtelescope.com/documents/Comet_Lulin_Mar1.pdf
Here are Scott Thompson’s images of comet Lulin:
Hoping to see everyone at the meeting,