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IYA09

The International Year of Astronomy 2009 Highlights

Dark Skies Rangers Program is now on-line!
Through the Dark Skies Rangers Program, students learn about the importance of dark skies and experience activities that illustrate proper lighting, light pollution’s effects on wildlife and how to measure the darkness of your skies. A highlight of the program is the citizen science project, GLOBE at Night, which enlists the help of students to collect data on the night sky conditions in their community and contribute to a worldwide database on light pollution. To learn more about the program and its activities, see http://www.darkskiesawareness.org/DarkSkiesRangers/.

A New Vision: Science and Tourism under the Stars
The StarLight Foundation has announced a new initiative to encourage the use of Science both as a resource for tourism and an essential part of sustainable tourism practices. The StarLight Tourism Certification System aims to ensure the quality of tourism experiences involving the nightscapes, the view of stars and the cosmos and the related scientific, cultural and environmental knowledge. Read more in their press release.

ESO Highlights in 2009
The year 2009 was celebrated as the International Year of Astronomy and has proved to be exceptional both for astronomy and for ESO. Read more here: http://www.eso.org/public/events/announcements/ann1001/index.html

100 Incredible Lectures from the World’s Top Scientists
Including 14 about Physics and Astronomy: http://www.bestcollegesonline.com/blog/2009/06/18/100-incredible-lectures-from-the-worlds-top-scientists/

Nightshade astronomy simulator launched
Nightshade is open source astronomy simulation and visualization software specifically tailored to digital planetarium and educator use. More information: http://nightshadesoftware.org/

StarPeace Newsletter
http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/710/

Big Dipper to Southern Cross: Remote Observing for All
Join others from around the world in sharing our sky — north and south — LIVE on 8 and 10 January

The southern Milky Way can be so bright that on a clear moonless night it will cause shadows, yet it is something people living in the northern hemisphere only hear stories of. In the same way, the beauty and objects of the northern sky are a mystery to southern residents.

Big Dipper to Southern Cross brings these two hemispheres together — truly One People, One Sky.

For this project there will be two telescopes — one in the northern hemisphere and one in the south — on two different nights. No experience is needed. This is a chance to watch as an experienced telescope operator and guide show how they capture the wonders of the night sky.

Join other members of AWB Affiliates around the world. Chat will be available between participants and with the telescope operator. Join in or just watch.

See the AWB Big Dipper to Southern Cross web page for more information: http://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/index.php/projects/remote-observing/188-big-dipper-to-southern-cross.html

New Website and Non-Profit To Help Sustain IYA2009 Legacy Projects
http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/712/

Celestron Celebrates Fifty Years of Optical Innovation
http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/713/

U.S. Legacy Includes Telescope Kit, Dark-Skies Awareness & More
http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/714/

Ric and Jean Edelman Give 15,000 Galileoscopes to Classrooms in the US
http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/715/

The Sky – Yours to Discover update
Children and young people from all five continents were invited to look directly at the skies, identify stars, connect stars with imaginary lines and create new constellations. The Penguin, the Elephant, the Mermaid and even Benjamin Franklin were found in the skies during 2009.

The special project “The Sky – Yours to Discover” involved associated partners in Australia, USA, Cuba, Brazil and Venezuela in America, Portugal, United Kingdom, Romania and Slovenia in Europe, Mozambique, South Africa, Uganda, Ghana and Kenya in Africa, India, Iraq, United Arab Emirates and Indonesia in Asia.

A NASA Goddard Finale to the International Year of Astronomy
The Visitor Center at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. presents a one-of-a-kind event featuring expert Hubble scientist Dr. David Leckrone on Wednesday, January 13, 2010.

Dr. Leckrone will recount his experiences as Senior Scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope for more than two decades. He will delve into the rollercoaster ride that was Servicing Mission 4—the last Shuttle servicing mission to the famed telescope. He will showcase some of the stunning images recently taken with Hubble’s newly installed and repaired instruments.

A special preview of Hubble’s successor, the James Webb Space Telescope, or JWST, will follow Dr. Leckrone’s presentation. Dr. Jonathan Gardner, JWST Deputy Senior Project Scientist, will discuss the next-generation space observatory that will explore deep space phenomena from distant galaxies to nearby planets and stars.

The Goddard Visitor Center will host this free, one-hour lecture on January 13, 2010, at 7:00 p.m. Arrive at 6:30 p.m. to enjoy a captivating visual experience, Science on a Sphere, and use astronaut gloves to examine and operate tools from Hubble Servicing Mission 4.

While the universe is infinite, space for this event is limited. To reserve your seat, go to: http://education.gsfc.nasa.gov/iyaf.

For directions to the Goddard Visitor Center, please visit: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/visitor/directions/index.html

Cosmic Diary Closing Ceremony Live Blog

Follow the adventures of the intrepid IYA2009 Secretariat staff writer and Cosmic Diary live blogger Lee Pullen, as he tells all you need to know about what is going on in Padova, Italy, before, during and after the IYA2009 Closing Ceremony.

http://cosmicdiary.org/closing_ceremony/

Closing Ceremony Streaming
For those who are not able to attend, the Closing Ceremony will be broadcasted live on the official website: http://www.beyond2009.org/

Galilean Nights: Get Ready for a Galileo Experience!

www.iau.org/public_press/news/release/iau0922/

 

Galilean Nights: Get Ready for a Galileo Experience!

 

21 October 2009, Paris: The International Year of Astronomy 2009 Cornerstone project, Galilean Nights, begins tomorrow. Hundreds of thousands of people all around the world will experience their own “Galileo moment” when they look up at the sky through a telescope for the first time. Galilean Nights will be a global experience, with more than 800 public observing events in over 50 countries, and this number is still increasing each day.

 

The Galilean Nights is a Cornerstone project of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009) and takes place from 22–24 October 2009. From stargazing in the deserts of Iran to the culinary delights of food and star parties in rural Australia, and from large observing parties in the busy capital city of Uruguay to neighbours in China studying craters on the Moon, Galilean Nights is an event for people from all walks of life, all around the globe. Visit the website for information on all activities and to find an event near you: www.galileannights.org.

 

Amateur astronomers, societies and other groups will be setting up telescopes in public places to allow as many people as possible to look at the heavens. Astronomy enthusiasts will be taking their telescopes to shopping centres, busy streets, schools or even the squares of capital cities. The hard work of hundreds of organisers in every country will culminate over these three days when people of all ages will share the wonders of the night sky and see the objects that Galileo first observed 400 years ago. For many, it will be their first glimpse of the marvels of the heavens through a telescope, seeing breathtaking sights such as the cloud bands of Jupiter, and intricate details on our cratered Moon.

 

As well as seeing our planetary neighbours through a telescope, people are encouraged to photograph what they see and share the sights with the wider world through the Galilean Nights astrophotography competition. Astrophotographers of all levels of experience are enthusiastically taking part in the competition as they try to produce their own captivating photographs of the Universe. Anybody with a camera and an appreciation of the night sky can take part!

 

In addition to these great activities, observatories are making their facilities available to the world, for remote observing sessions. As well as attending local Galilean Nights observing events, anybody with access to the internet will be able to control telescopes on the other side of the world. Those taking part in remote observing sessions will be able to take photographs of astronomical objects from their own personal computers.

 

Galilean Nights is a truly global event, with hundreds of thousands of people discovering our Universe from all sorts of locations and settings around the world. Get involved, and experience your own Galileo moment!

 

Links

·         Galilean Nights website: www.galileannights.org

·         Galilean Nights Astrophotography Competition: www.galileannights.org/competition.html

·         IYA2009 website: www.astronomy2009.org

·         List of Remote Observatories: www.galileannights.org/remote_observing.html

 

Notes

The vision of the IYA2009 is to help the citizens of the world rediscover their place in the Universe through the day and night-time skies the impact of astronomy and basic sciences on our daily lives, and understand better how scientific knowledge can contribute to a more equitable and peaceful society.

 

The aim of the IYA2009 is to stimulate worldwide interest, especially among young people, in astronomy and science under the central theme‚”The Universe, Yours to Discover”. IYA2009 events and activities will promote a greater appreciation of the inspirational aspects of astronomy that embody an invaluable shared resource for all countries.

 

The IYA2009 activities are taking place at the global and regional levels, and especially at the national and local levels. National Nodes in each state have been formed to prepare activities for 2009. These Nodes establish collaborations between professional and amateur astronomers, science centres, educators and science communicators in preparing activities for 2009. The International Year of Astronomy was proclaimed by the United Nations on 20 December 2007.

Galilean Nights: Invites the World to Discover Our Universe

www.iau.org/public_press/news/release/iau0918/

Galilean Nights: Global Astronomy Event Invites the World to Discover Our Universe

 

17 September 2009, Paris:  Wind the clock back 400 years and follow in the footsteps of a giant ? experience now just what first amazed Galileo in 1609!  The latest Cornerstone project of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009), Galilean Nights, will see thousands of public observing events around the world replicating Galileo’s  observations and bringing what he saw 400 years ago to the public of today. From 22 to 24 October, amateur and professional astronomers, science centres, schools and all interested groups are invited to be part of the Galilean Nights project and to register their events on the project website www.galileannights.org.  We can all make
this a worldwide success.

The Galilean Nights builds on the unprecedented success of April’s 100 Hours of Astronomy, another IYA2009 Cornerstone project. Over three nights amateur and professional astronomers, and enthusiasts, will share their knowledge and enthusiasm for the Universe by encouraging as many people as possible to look through a telescope at our neighbouring planets. The focus for the Galilean Nights is on the observations made by the Italian astronomer Galileo 400 years ago, including those of Jupiter and the Moon, which will be well-positioned in the night sky for observing during the event. For many members of the public it will be their first look through a telescope, when they can see such breathtaking sights such as the cloud bands of the gas giant, Jupiter, and intricate details on our cratered Moon. It will be an unforgettable experience.

Anyone, from any background and with any level of experience is encouraged to organise events, from one person sharing the night sky through a telescope with a small group of neighbours and friends, to large astronomical groups holding major observing sessions in public areas. To keep track of developments, assist with promotion and to help people to find local Galilean Nights activities, all events should be registered on the project website:
www.galileannights.org. Hundreds of events all over the world have already been registered and the number is increasing every day.

IYA2009 Executive Committee Chair, Catherine Cesarsky says, “Amateur observations have always played an important role in astronomy, a fact highlighted by one of the most exciting events of this year when it was an amateur astronomer who noticed that Jupiter had suffered a massive impact by an asteroid or comet. So it is fitting that Galilean Nights continues this tradition as thousands of amateur astronomers and the public will turn their attention to Jupiter and other objects that Galileo observed 400 years ago.”

Stunning images of distant objects in the Universe are well known around the world and do more to bring astronomy to the wider public and to inspire future astronomers than words ever could. The public have been set the challenge of capturing the inspirational nature of our local solar neighbourhood in the worldwide Galilean Nights photography
competition. Run in partnership with Europlanet, the Galilean Nights competition encourages anybody with an enthusiasm for astronomy to try a different approach to their observations and create their own inspirational photographs of our planetary neighbours. The contest is being officially launched today during Europlanet’s European Planetary Science Congress, held this year in Potsdam, Germany.

Four hundred years since Galileo’s telescopic observations revolutionised our view of the Universe, the public will once again be turning their attention to the heavens. People all around the world are encouraged to take part in the Galilean Nights Cornerstone project and experience for themselves the same sense of awe and wonder that Galileo must have felt.

Links
* Galilean Nights website: www.galileannights.org
* IYA2009 website: www.astronomy2009.org
* Galilean Nights Astrophotography Competition http://www.galileannights.org/competition.html

* European Planetary Science Congress website: http://meetings.copernicus.org/epsc2009/

Notes
The vision of the IYA2009 is to help the citizens of the world rediscover their place in the Universe through the day and night-time skies the impact of astronomy and basic sciences on our daily lives, and understand better how scientific knowledge can contribute to a more equitable and peaceful society.

The aim of the IYA2009 is to stimulate worldwide interest, especially among young people, in astronomy and science under the central theme‚”The Universe, Yours to Discover”. IYA2009 events and activities will promote a greater appreciation of the inspirational aspects of astronomy that embody an invaluable shared resource for all countries.

The IYA2009 activities are taking place at the global and regional levels, and especially at the national and local levels. National Nodes in each state have been formed to prepare activities for 2009. These Nodes establish collaborations between professional and amateur astronomers, science centres, educators and science communicators in preparing activities for 2009. The International Year of Astronomy was proclaimed by the United Nations on 20 December 2007.

For more information
Catherine Moloney
Galilean Nights Task Group Chair
Cellular: +44 7881861400
E-mail: cmoloney@eso.org

Shoppers in the U.S. to see “The World at Night”

Shoppers across the U.S. to experience “The World at Night”

An exhibit of stunning photographs of the night sky as viewed over many of the most beautiful natural, historic and cultural landmarks in the world is being shown at 24 shopping centres across the United States from now through November 8. Read more here:

http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/425/

Astrocast.TV Episode 10 – January 2009

From all of us here at Astrocast.TV Happy New Year!

Get the Flash Player to see the wordTube Media Player.

January 1, 2009 – Episode 10STS-119 heads for ISS to install it’s the final backbone. IYA 09 is here and Lori gives us more on the International Year of Astronomy 2009. Check out Lori’s Blog for more links and coverage of IYA09.

Greg reports on Dark Energy and NASA’s recent findings on the effects of this mysterious energy. Also Asteroids are in the News, Greg fills us in.

Our Special Guest Dr. Phil Plait aka "The Bad Astronomer" talks about Bad Astronomy and his new book "Death From The Skies"

- Katie Moore tells us all about Our Winter Night sky.

-Dr. Geller tells answers a viewers question about binary Star Systems

 

Follow our Blog for more links and information in Episode 10.

Survey - Tell us what you think of Astrocast.TV and how we can better serve your interests in Astronomy.

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