Bartlesville Public Library Meeting Room A
7:00 p.m. - Casual Conversation and Informal Discussion: This will be a good time to talk with other members, share observing experiences and ideas, show your favorite astrophotos or astronomical equipment, and ask questions.
7:30 p.m. - Search for a Dark Observing Site
Steve Plank will summarize recent efforts by the club to find a suitable location for astronomical observing. The continued advance of light pollution has made it increasingly difficult to observe and photograph faint celestial objects from within city limits. Steve will explain the current status of our search for a dark observing site, possible locations already identified and possible collaborations with other organizations. He will be encouraging meeting attendees to offer feedback and suggestions. The meeting is open to the public.
After the program there will be a brief business meeting to discuss several club items, including the need to update our bylaws, a request for feedback on ways to improve the newsletter, and a discussion about what directions our club activities should take. Members are encouraged to come with ideas to share.
Night Sky Program for Schools
Joyce Ritchie has recently been in contact with Wayside Elementary School to offer a one-time night sky observing session presented by our club. This would include basic constellation familiarization, as well as observing with binoculars and telescopes. She will give an update of the current plans for this event at the meeting.
Our second attempt at a winter star party was, like the first, a victim of the weather. This time we were not just clouded out - we were fogged out. At this rate, our best chance of clear skies may be to reschedule our "winter" star party for June. :-)
Now that we have recovered our club bylaws from the mists of time (1989), we need to take a closer look at them. Several volunteers are needed to review the bylaws in detail, formulate a plan to update them and bring them into the 21st century, and present the results to club members for discussion, revision, and approval. Please consider volunteering. Thanks.
Armchair Meteorite Collecting
After last month's program on meteorite collecting by Rick Bryant, I was excited about the prospect of finding my very own "space rocks". Before the meeting ended, we briefly discussed the idea of a club meteorite collecting expedition. This could be a really fun and interesting club event, and I encouraged Rick to think about planning such an excursion to a relatively nearby location, some time in the future. Of course, if resources were unlimited and money was no object, we could increase our chances by going to Antarctica, where meteorites remain exposed on top of the ice. However, it now appears that there may be a closer destination for successful meteorite collecting. An article at Universe Today <http://www.universetoday.com/2010/01/21/meteorite-smashes-through-roof-of-doctors-office-video/> reports that a meteorite about the size of a tennis ball smashed through the roof of a doctor's office in Lorton, Virginia. The half pound rock was confirmed as a chondrite meteorite with a fusion crust, by planetary scientist Cari Corrigan, at the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of Natural History. Be sure to watch the video at the link above.
Bartlesville Sky (looking south) February 15, 2010 at 8:00 p.m.
(source: Stellarium 0.10.2, see http://www.stellarium.org/ )
February Astronomical Calendar
d h d h
4 6 Spica 3.2N of Moon 15 1 Jupiter 4.6S of Moon
5 23 LAST QUARTER 16 14 Uranus 5.4S of Moon
7 19 Antares 1.2S of Moon Occn 17 2 Venus 0.5S of Jupiter
8 5 Venus 1.0S of Neptune 22 0 FIRST QUARTER
8 14 Moon furthest South (-25.7) 23 5 Moon furthest North (25.6)
12 4 Mercury 2.2S of Moon 26 3 Mars 5.2N of Moon
13 1 Moon at apogee 27 13 Mercury 1.7S of Neptune
14 2 NEW MOON 27 20 Moon at perigee
14 4 Neptune 3.4S of Moon 28 0 Regulus 3.8N of Moon
14 20 Venus 5.0S of Moon 28 10 Jupiter at conjunction
14 23 Neptune at conjunction 28 16 FULL MOON
March 1 in the Bartlesville Public Library Meeting Room (tentative). Program to be determined (volunteers appreciated).
BAS Public Website: http://sites.google.com/site/bartlesvilleastronomyclub/
BAS Yahoo Group: http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/BvilleAstro/
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