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UMass Dartmouth Observatory Open House is May 15

The UMass Dartmouth Observatory and the Astronomical Society of Southern New England (ASSNE) are pleased to invite the general public to the last open house and night-sky viewing session this season. The Observatory open house is Saturday, May 15, at 8:30 p.m. Viewing will take place through the Observatory's 16-inch telescope and other telescopes operated by ASSNE members.

The UMass Dartmouth Observatory and the Astronomical Society of Southern New England (ASSNE) are pleased to invite the general public to the last open house and night-sky viewing session this season. The Observatory open house is Saturday, May 15, 2010 starting at 8:30 p.m.. Viewing will take place through the Observatory's 16-inch telescope and other telescopes operated by ASSNE members.


This event will take place only if the weather permits (clear skies and non-frostbite temperature). In the event of cancellation, an announcement will be available Saturday around 5 PM at www.assne.org or by calling (508) 999-8715 for a recorded message.

The Observatory is located in the field to the right of the main entrance to UMass Dartmouth off Old Westport Rd., North Dartmouth, Massachusetts. Parking is available in designated spaces on the campus Ring Road or in lot 17.  Admission is free, but donations to support the Observatory's educational programs are strongly encouraged. Children are welcome, if accompanied by an adult.

The Astronomical Society of Southern New England is a non-profit club of amateur astronomers who serve Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts with educational outreach programs and public viewing. ASSNE assists UMass Dartmouth in operating the University Observatory and telescope for public viewings. The ASSNE motto is "To Educate and Inspire." For more information about the Astronomical Society of Southern New England, check online at http://www.assne.org/.

For more information about the UMass Dartmouth Observatory or to become an individual or corporate sponsor, please contact Prof. Alan Hirshfeld at ahirshfeld@umassd.edu or 508-999-8715.

ASTRONOMY WEBSITE OF THE MONTH:

The high-flying Hubble Space Telescope (HST) just passed its 20th year in operation, having been lofted into orbit by the Space Shuttle on April 24, 1990. Images from this orbiting observatory have provided astronomers with a host of scientific discoveries and the general public with eye-popping scenes of celestial wonder. Explore the HST web site, which is filled with beautiful photographs and videos of phenomena in outer space:

http://hubblesite.org/

At the HST web site, you can view and download the 20th anniversary image of the so-called Mystic Mountain region of the Carina nebula, where stars are presently being formed:

http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2010/13/image/a/

Hubble's namesake, Edwin Hubble, was the foremost observational astronomer of the 1920s and 1930s. Working with what was then the world's largest telescope -- the still-operating 100-inch reflector on Mount Wilson in California -- Hubble and his colleagues measured the first distance to a galaxy and subsequently proved that galaxies are flying apart from one another: the universe is expanding. These findings burst into the newspaper headlines and made Edwin Hubble a scientific celebrity on par with Albert Einstein. Naming the space telescope after Hubble is an appropriate honor for one of the great astronomers of the age.       


 

Author:  "Alan Hirshfeld"
Date:  12-May-2010
Department:   Physics

You can find this article at:
http://www.umassd.edu/communications/articles/showarticles.cfm?a_key=2756