August 2012

Monday, August 6, 2012

Bartlesville Public Library Meeting Room

6:45 p.m.   Setup and Discussion
7:00 p.m.   Club Business
7:15 p.m.   Current Astronomy News
                    Object of the Month
7:00 p.m.

Figuring Telescope Mirrors

Fred Frey will talk about his experiences making and figuring telescope mirrors, complete with demonstrations of what a figured mirror would look like through a Foucault tester.


OETA - the Oklahoma PBS channel is beginning a SUMMER of Space Specials

More details and links to online play back at    Note: The times on the NOVA website are EDT  so most of the times are an hour earlier in Central Daylight Time

The OETA schedule page is  But does not extend into July yet. NOVA re-airs on the regular OETA station on Saturday at 3 PM and Sunday at 11 AM.   The OETA OKLA channel usually re-airs the same shows a day later so that  Weds 8 PM show is on Thurs at 8 PM  NOVA also appears after midnight 1:00 AM Thursday and 4:00 AM Friday   There may be more times  so Check your local listings


Hunting the Edge of Space: The Mystery of the Milky Way 

Wednesday, July 25 at 8 pm on PBS   NOVA  The Fabric of the Cosmos: Quantum Leap
    Take a wild ride into the quantum realm, where even the impossible seems possible.

The Elegant Universe: Welcome to the 11th Dimension Part 3

Wednesday, July 25 at 9 pm on PBS
The Fabric of the Cosmos: Universe or Multiverse?
Wednesday, August 1 at 8 pm on PBS   The Fabric of the Cosmos: Universe or Multiverse?
Is our universe unique, or could it be just one in an endless "multiverse"?

NOVA ScienceNow

Can We Make It to Mars?
Wednesday, August 1 at 9 pm on PBS

NOVA - Finding Life Beyond Earth

Wednesday, August 8 at 8 pm on PBS  

Scientists are on the verge of answering one of the greatest questions in history: Are we alone?

Times for July are estimated based on the PBS site – Check local schedules in July.

Enter the International Dark-Sky Association’s Darksky Giveaway for an astronomically grand prize— a set of eight TeleVue Ethos eyepieces valued at $5,665, generously donated by Televue Optics.

To enter the IDA's Darksky Giveaway, you must be an IDA member before the entry closeout date of August 31, 2012. If you are not a member, joining is easy and the cost of a one-year membership is only $35.00. To join or renew your membership, visit and select the “Join” tab at the top of the webpage. You can also join by calling the IDA office at (520) 293-3198. Entering to win is also a breeze. Visit where you can fill out the entry form online and read the official rules.

Individual memberships help IDA perform its mission in stopping light pollution and helps to support its many programs. Through the International Dark Sky Places program, IDA and its partners certify locations with exceptional nightscapes as International Dark Sky Communities, International Dark Sky Parks, and International Dark Sky Reserves. The Dark Sky Parks and Protected Area Program currently works with national parks to help them utilize quality outdoor lighting. IDA’s new Suburban Outreach Sites project partners with astronomy clubs to establish accessible programs for kids and their parents. These programs help IDA to engage communities and to raise awareness and ultimately “to preserve and protect the nighttime environment and our heritage of dark skies through environmentally responsible outdoor lighting.”

IDA members make a big difference in their communities and around the world, which is why IDA is thrilled to offer its members such a premium giveaway from Televue Optics. Make sure you enter the DarkSky Giveaway by the deadline and good luck!

To learn more, visit

The winner will be announced at the Pacific Astronomy and Telescope Show in September 2012, but does not need to attend PATS to win.


Current News from Sky and Telescope
Saturn's two-faced moon hosts extraordinary avalanches that cascade much longer than they should. Figuring out what makes them flow might help scientists better understand landslides on Earth.

Viewing the Flags of Apollo — July 30, 2012
It's a question that still gets asked: "Can you see the six flags left on the Moon by Apollo astronauts?" The surprising answer is "Yes".

A new study simulating stars as they orbit a black hole might provide the best explanation for how our nearest spiral galaxy neighbor grew its lopsided nucleus.

After seven years of construction, Lowell Observatory's Discovery Channel Telescope is about to come online. The DCT team expects the state-of-the-art 4.3-meter scope to breathe new life into the storied observatory and allow astronomers new views of comets, stars, and deep-space objects.

Do-It-Yourself Space Science — July 18, 2012
A California startup seeks to democratize space research by putting a tiny, custom-built satellite into orbit — and letting the public decide how to use it.

An ancient spiral galaxy offers another tantalizing clue to how nature might create these grand designs.

Seeing "Dark" Galaxies — July 17, 2012
After years of failure, astronomers have finally succeeded in imaging primeval clouds of gas like those that existed before there were stars.

AMA Addresses Light Pollution — July 16, 2012
The American Medical Association has released a report detailing several possible health concerns related to nighttime light exposure. But some lighting researchers worry the conclusions are more alarmist than is warranted.

Pluto's Moons: Five and Counting — July 11, 2012
When NASA's New Horizons spacecraft reaches Pluto in three years, it'll have one more object to check out: a tiny fifth moon discovered by the Hubble Space Telescope.

Lowell Observatory's Pro-Am Initiative — July 10, 2012
If you're a serious stargazer with good gear, a passion for observing, and some free time, a team of astronomers at Lowell Observatory hope to hear from you.

Impossibly Aligned Galaxies — July 6, 2012
Astronomers have found an alignment of galaxies along our line of sight that’s so rare, it ought to be impossible. Is it just luck — or does it tell us something more?

Physicists using the Large Hadron Collider announced yesterday their discovery of a particle consistent with the Higgs boson. The find was expected, but it's still a big deal.

Skyweek from Sky and Telescope Magazine also presents a variety of astronomical events for the naked eye as well as telescope viewing.

Let’s Go Stargazing

Lots of activities and information for families and novice astronomers.

Courtesy of John Land, Astronomy Club of Tulsa.

  • July 28, 29 - Southern Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower. The Delta Aquarids can produce about 20 meteors per hour at their peak. The shower usually peaks on July 28 & 29, but some meteors can also be seen from July 18 - August 18. The radiant point for this shower will be in the constellation Aquarius. The near first quarter moon will set shortly after midnight, leaving dark skies for what should be a good show. Best viewing is usually to the east after midnight.
  • August 2 - Full Moon. The Moon will be directly opposite the Earth from the Sun and will be fully illuminated as seen from Earth. This phase occurs at 03:27 UTC.
  • August 6 - Curiosity Rover at Mars. NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) is scheduled to land on the red planet between August 6 and August 20, 2012. Officially named Curiosity, it is an autonomous rover similar to the Spirit and Opportunity rovers that previously visited Mars. This much larger rover will carry many more instruments and experiments than its previous cousins. Curiosity’s high definition color cameras will photograph the Martian surface while a host of instruments will sample the soil and air and search for organic compounds.
  • August 12, 13 - Perseids Meteor Shower. The Perseids is one of the best meteor showers to observe, producing up to 60 meteors per hour at their peak. The shower's peak usually occurs on August 13 & 14, but you may be able to see some meteors any time from July 23 - August 22. The radiant point for this shower will be in the constellation Perseus. The near last quarter moon will be hanging around for the show, but shouldn’t be too much of a problem for a shower with up to 60 meteors per hour. Find a location far from city lights and look to the northeast after midnight
  • August 17 - New Moon. The Moon will be directly between the Earth and the Sun and will not be visible from Earth. This phase occurs at 15:54 UTC.

  • August 24 - Neptune at Opposition. The blue planet will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. This is the best time to view Neptune. Due to its distance, it will only appear as a tiny blue dot in all but the most powerful telescopes.

  • August 31 - Full Moon. The Moon will be directly opposite the Earth from the Sun and will be fully illuminated as seen from Earth. This phase occurs at 13:58 UTC. Since this is the second full moon in the same month, it is known as a blue moon. This rare calendar event only happens once every few years, giving rise to the term, “once in a blue moon.”

  • September 16 - New Moon. The Moon will be directly between the Earth and the Sun and will not be visible from Earth. This phase occurs at 02:11 UTC.

  • (Source:

  • 2012 Programs

    Month Program Presenter
    JanOKC Astronomy and The Night Sky NetworkChristian
    FebAstronomy and WeatherGeorge Flickinger
    MarStellar Life CyclesDaryl Doughty
    AprNative American Star/Sky StoriesLynn Moroney
    MayTelescope CollimationArden Strycker
    JunInformal Meeting
    JulSolar Eclipse and Venus Transit ResultsRick Bryant
    AugBuilding a TelescopeFred Frey
    SeptDigital Image ProcessingBob Young

    NovNucleosynthesis: The Universe as a Chemical FactoryVirgil Reese
    DecThe Star of Bethlehem (DVD)Daryl Doughty

    Next Meeting

    August 6, Monday. Bartlesville Public Library Meeting Room (tentative)


    Newsletter Contributions Needed

    Our club newsletter is reaching more people each month, and member contributions in the form of short articles, interesting news items, alerts of upcoming astronomical events or activities, descriptions of personal observations or useful equipment, and observing tips, are encouraged. Recurring columns or multipart articles are also welcome. Please submit your contributions to Mike Woods or to .

    Bartlesville Astronomical Society - Membership

    B.A.S. is an organization of people interested in Astronomy and related fields of science.

    The current officers are:


    John Grismore

    Program Chair & Vice President

    Daryl Doughty

    Information Officer (Newsletter)

    Mike Woods


    Vicky Travaglini / Milt Enderlin

    The current board members are:
    Arden Strycker
    Steve Plank
    James Campbell
    Duane Perkins

    Additional club positions:
    Publicity/Newspaper Carroll Ritchie
    Public Website John Grismore
    Member Observing Program Steve Plank & Arden Strycker
    Meeting Room Arrangements Steve Plank
    On-Line Media James Campbell

    Membership is open to everyone interested in any aspects of astronomy.

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    Magazine Subscription (reduced rate for members)

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    Astronomy Technology Today Magazine. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $14.00

    Astronomy Magazine. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $34.00/yr


    If you want to have your email address removed from the Bartlesville Astronomical Society mailing list, please send an email requesting removal to

    If you want to have your email address removed from the Bartlesville Astronomical Society mailing list, please send an email requesting removal to