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February 2010

 
February Meeting
Monday,  February 1
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.

Club Business
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.

Fogged Out!
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.   :-)

Club ByLaws
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



Bartlesville Astronomical Society - Membership

B.A.S. is an organization of people interested in Astronomy and related fields of science.
The current officers are:

President
John Grismore
Vice President
Mike Woods
Secretary/Editor
Fred Frey
Treasurer
Milt Enderlin (acting)
Member at Large
Joyce Gray - Education Coordinator
Program Chairman
James Vogh
Astronomical League
John Grismore
Newsletter
James Vogh (acting)

Membership is open to everyone interested in any aspects of astronomy. 
Adult. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  $12.00
Students (through 12th grade) . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  $ 5.00
Magazine Subscription (reduced rate for members)
Sky & Telescope . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . .  $32.95

B.A.S. is a registered, non-profit organization.


Next Meeting
March 1 in the Bartlesville Public Library Meeting Room (tentative).  Program to be determined (volunteers appreciated).



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