“Thomas Jefferson: His Interest in Astronomy in His Own Words.”
Presented by Dr. Edward Murphy, Associate Professor, UVA Astronomy Department
Thomas Jefferson was an avid astronomer. He conducted observations at Monticello and corresponded with many of the most important astronomers of his day. For the University of Virginia, he include astronomy in the early curriculum, he drew up plans for a permanent observatory, which would have been the first in the western hemisphere, and he proposed painting the night sky on the inside of the Rotunda Dome. In this talk, I will discuss Thomas Jefferson’s interest in astronomy and how it influenced the study of astronomy at the University of Astronomy since its founding.
“Observing at Steward Observatory’s 90″ Bok Telescope on Kitt Peak”
David Whelan, Doctoral Candidate, UVA Astronomy Department
I’ll give you the low down on what it’s like to observe for six nights running in the “bleak midwinter” (a.k.a. the longest nights of the year). The Bok telescope is a world-class, 2.3-meter reflecting telescope on the top of Kitt Peak. Situated in the saddle between two rises, it experiences straight winds across the desert in laminar flow and, therefore, excellent seeing. I’ll show some pictures of the telescope, the instrument I’m using, and then show off some cool science pictures, along with a brief description of what we are investigating.
Paul Martini – Visiting Professor from Ohio State
Clusters of galaxies have an extraordinarily large number of galaxies in a small region of space. I will describe how these galaxies are different from those found elsewhere in the universe, as well as how the environment of clusters may shape their evolution.
“Mirror & Lens”
Our Speaker this Month – John (pre-Galilean) Avellone, CAS Member
An inquiry concerning the design & performance of possible 16th century (pre-Galilean) telescopes.
Bill Phillips, CAS Member
We are going to talk about the basic optical principles that come into play when you use a telescope, including, most importantly, the optics of your eye. We will also cover the basic types of telescopes available today and the pros and cons of each. Lastly we will look at the process of imaging with a CCD camera, and how it leads to demands on the optical system that differ from a visual telescope. Fortunately there are some scope designs that do both jobs well.
Special Meeting at the John C. Wells Planetarium at James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA
Shanil Virani – director of the John C. Wells Planetarium at James Madison will be our host.
Shanil will provide an overview of the facility, a full dome video and a star talk using the planetarium skyball. See planetarium website for details and directions. 2 pm to 4:30-5:00 pm.
“Evolution Isn’t Just For Australopithecines -or- How to Blow Up a Star in One Easy Lesson” presented by Richard Drumm
The talk touches on the evolution of stars of various masses, low (up to ~ 4SM), medium (4-8 SM) & high (>8SM). The talk is mainly about Type II core collapse supernovae.
Rich is the current Vice-President and former President of the Charlottesville Astronomical Society.
Our August meeting guest speaker will be UVA Graduate Research Assistant Meredith Elrod. Meredith’s topic will be “Saturn’s Magnetosphere, Rings, and Moons”.
Start time is 6:45 pm.
Normally our monthly meetings occur on the first Wednesday of every month at McCormick Observatory starting a 6:45 pm. This month the meeting was moved to the second Wednesday to accommodate other University of Virginia scheduling.
Our September meeting guest speaker will be University of Virginia Graduate Student, Guillermo Damke. The meeting starts at 6:45 pm.
Guillermo will present Astronomy in the Southern Hemisphere, specifically Chile. He will discuss professional observatories in Chile, what telescopes/instruments are there, why they were built there (geographical/atmospheric conditions) as well as some of the very interesting astronomical objects that are only accessible from the Southern hemisphere. He will present pictures that he has taken from some telescopes while observing there plus pictures of different observatories. He will also show some amateur observatories that are run by municipalities that attract thousands of tourists per year. All of this is possible because of the exceptional conditions of the night skies. Finally, he will discuss the efforts made by observatories and government to keep the darkness of the skies by enacting a lighting law.
Our October meeting guest speaker will be UVA Graduate Student, John Allan.
Ph.D., Electrical Engineer, UVA
Research Professor and Lecturer, UVA Astronomy Dept.
Visiting Asst. Professor, Electrical Engineering, UVA
Research Engineer, NRAO, Central Developing Lab
“Lunar Planetary Institute Planetary Cave Conference “
Presented by CAS Member John Dedecker!
Anthony Remijan will be discussing AstroChemistry!
Tony is the Manager of Observatory Science Operations & an Associate Scientist at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO)