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Archive for the ‘GTAS Outreach Event’ Category

11/02/2018 – Ephemeris – Back to basics tonight at the GTAS meeting

November 2, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Friday, November 2nd. The Sun will rise at 8:22. It’ll be up for 10 hours and 7 minutes, setting at 6:30. The Moon, 2 days past last quarter, will rise at 3:27 tomorrow morning.

Tonight at this month’s meeting of the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society at 8 p.m. at Northwestern Michigan College’s Rogers observatory we will get back to basics for anyone wondering about the skies visible from one’s backyard. Learn the constellations by building your own star finder that shows where the stars are any night of the year. We’ll also show you how to use it. We will let you experiment with moon-balls, that will show the light and shadow of the Moon’s phases. Afterward, if it’s clear you’ll have a chance to use those star finders during the observation period starting around 9 p.m. The observatory is south of Traverse City, on Birmley Road, between Garfield and Keystone roads.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

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10/19/2018 – Ephemeris – Last 2018 outings for the GTAS this weekend

October 19, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Friday, October 19th. The Sun will rise at 8:03. It’ll be up for 10 hours and 47 minutes, setting at 6:51. The Moon, 3 days past first quarter, will set at 3:32 tomorrow morning.

Clouds willing, the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will host two events this weekend. The first is Saturday night on the sidewalk on the 200 block of Front Street in Traverse City. It’s the International Observe the Moon Night, celebrated around the world. The event will begin at 8 p.m. Again the sky has to be at least partially clear for this event to happen.

Sunday night, again skies willing, members of the society will be at the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Dune Climb for the final star party of the year celebrating the 48th anniversary of the establishment of the park. On tap will be the Moon, Mars and Saturn plus some of the brighter wonders of the heavens including colorful binary stars and star clusters.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

10/05/2018 – Ephemeris – All about telescopes for the gift giving season

October 5, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Friday, October 5th. The Sun will rise at 7:45. It’ll be up for 11 hours and 30 minutes, setting at 7:15. The Moon, halfway from last quarter to new, will rise at 4:28 tomorrow morning.

We at the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society get asked a lot about what kind of telescope to get for their beginning astronomer, whether young or old. With the gift-giving season coming upon us, now is the time to plan ahead. This month’s meeting at 8 p.m. at the Northwestern Michigan College’s Rogers Observatory there will be several types of telescopes there, including one of mine*. There is no right telescope, but there are lots of wrong telescopes, and its not always the telescope itself, but the mounting that’s the problem. Society members will show you what the various telescopes can do, what you need, and don’t need. What’s the best telescope for what price range.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

* I’m currently suffering from a sprained wrist, so I may not be able to bring in my 11″ Dobsonian telescope, but will bring in a much smaller (3″) telescope of similar design instead.

10/02/2018 – Ephemeris – I will give a talk on Saturn at the Traverse Area District Library tomorrow night

October 2, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Tuesday, October 2nd. The Sun will rise at 7:42. It’ll be up for 11 hours and 39 minutes, setting at 7:21. The Moon, at last quarter today, will rise at 12:55 tomorrow morning.

Tomorrow night October 3rd at 7 p.m. I’ll be giving a talk at the main branch of the Traverse Area District Library on Woodmere Avenue, about the amazing discoveries made about Saturn, its rings and moons by the Cassini spacecraft and its Titan lander Huygens, spanning 7 years to get there and 13 orbiting Saturn among its rings and moons. The spacecraft made a planned plunge into Saturn’s atmosphere a year ago. The illustrated talk is called Remembering Cassini. Besides the numerical data sent back were images, some of which were made into videos, such as the landing of the Huygens probe on Titan. After the talk, if it will be clear, Saturn will be visible in the telescopes of the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society, along with other wonders of the skies.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendu

Cassini and Huygens
Cassini and Huygens from Remembering Cassini

09/28/2018 – Ephemeris – The GTAS will be at the Acme Fall Festival tomorrow

September 28, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Friday, September 28th. The Sun will rise at 7:37. It’ll be up for 11 hours and 51 minutes, setting at 7:28. The Moon, half way from full to last quarter, will rise at 9:44 this evening.

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will be at the Acme Fall Festival tomorrow, that’s Saturday September 29th from 10 to 4 p.m. It will be held at Flintfields Horse Park on Bates Road, north of M72. The society members will bring their telescopes which will be used to view the Sun, and Venus if it’s clear. There will also be exhibits of astronomical photos from NASA, professional and our own amateur astronomers. As the festival and star party year winds down and the school year begins members of the society can bring astronomy and space to the classroom. Plus the society is beginning to plan for next year. Contact the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society via email at info@gtastro.org.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

09/21/2018 – Ephemeris – Twilight talk and star, actually planet, party tonight in Thompsonville

September 21, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Friday, September 21st. The Sun will rise at 7:28. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 13 minutes, setting at 7:42. The Moon, 3 days before full, will set at 4:44 tomorrow morning.

Tonight members of the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will hold a twilight talk and a star party at the Betsie Valley District Library in Thompsonville. It starts at 7 p.m. with a talk about how the Moon came to be and the features that will be visible tonight by yours truly. Where did the Moon come from? That mystery has baffled astronomers for ages. The rocks the Apollo astronauts brought back from the Moon offer clues to a possible answer. After which the Moon, Mars and Saturn will be visible. If cloudy, the talk will go on as scheduled, though the observing part of the evening will be replaced with a look at the skies via computer projection and a preview of the autumn season in the skies.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

09/18/2018 – Ephemeris – Moon and planet party tomorrow night

September 18, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Tuesday, September 18th. The Sun will rise at 7:25. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 22 minutes, setting at 7:47. The Moon, 2 days past first quarter, will set at 1:53 tomorrow morning.

Tomorrow evening the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will set up their telescopes at the Traverse Area District Library Central Library on Woodmere Avenue from 7 to 8:30 p.m. weather permitting for a star party, though it won’t actually feature stars. It will feature the Moon in its gibbous phase and the planets Jupiter, Saturn and Mars after 7:30 p.m. The evening will start with a twilight talk by yours truly about the Moon. Also Mars is showing some features now that it is still relatively close to the Earth at 49 and a half million miles away, and the global dust storm on the planet has subsided. On the face of Mars tomorrow night is the large formation Syrtis Major, sounds nice, but it means the Great Swamp.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.