Saturday, September 12, 2009
Westin SFO Hotel, Millbrae
Astronomy enthusiasts of all ages are invited to join a gathering of local professional and amateur astronomers for an exciting day of astronomy lectures, demonstrations and family activities, followed by a night of stargazing through an impressive array of telescopes. This gathering is sponsored by the Astronomical Association of Northern California (AANC), in collaboration with the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP). It is an opening event of the ASP Annual Meeting, September 12-16.
Speakers confirmed for attendance are:
• Dr. Peter Jenniskens, senior research scientist at SETI Institute's Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe and at NASA Ames Research, will describe his expedition to hunt for meteorite fragments in Sudan and their significance for Solar System research.
• Brian Day, NASA Ames Educator Resource Center, will update us on the NASA LRO and LCROSS mission to look for signs of water ice on the Moon's surface. Brian will also sponsor a brown-bag lunch workshop for amateur astronomers, focusing on observational and data submission protocols for the LRO/LCROSS mission.
• John Dillon, Randall Museum San Francisco, will present his illustrated talk The Autopsy of Heaven: Galileo, Telescopes and the Beginning of Modern Science.
• Christopher Go, astrophotographer, will present his talk Adventures of an Amateur Planetary Imager and discuss Solar System imaging with the Hubble Space Telescope (live video/audio feed)
• Kris Koenig, video producer and CEO of Interstellar Studios, discusses the making of his recent PBS documentary in his talk 400 Years of the Telescope: An International Year of Astronomy Celebration.
• Avani Bedagkar, high school student and astronomy enthusiast, will discuss the elementary school astronomy program she conceived and implemented, and how you can start a similar program in your own school.
Other daytime activities include sun-viewing through safe solar telescopes, make-and-take art projects for kids, and opportunities to meet and speak with representatives from local astronomy clubs and dealers. There will also be an astronomy raffle offering thousands of dollars in prizes.
As a special bonus, registrants will receive free admission to the following ASP-sponsored events on Sunday, September 13:
• LRO/LCROSS mission workshops sponsored by NASA and the ASP will focus on engaging the public with the NASA LRO/LCROSS mission.
• Dr. Frank Drake, Director of SETI Institute's Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe, Reflections on the Drake Equation.
• Dr. Jon Jenkins, Co-Investigator and Data Analysis Lead for the NASA Kepler Mission, Finding a Home for ET: The Kepler Mission .
• Dr. Seth Shostak, Senior Astronomer at the SETI Institute, The Real ET.
• Dr. Margaret Race, Principal Investigator at SETI Institute's Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe, Discovering ET: What's Next?
What: AANC Annual Meeting 2009: Year of Astronomy
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