September Meeting, Tuesday, September 22
First Christian Church, Fellowship Hall (Sixth and Osage)
(Please use the East entrance under the awning)
Informal Discussion: 7:00 p.m.
Bring anything you think might be interesting.
Meeting: 7:30 p.m.
Program: The Astronomy Club of Tulsa
Peggy Walker, ACT International Year of Astronomy 2009 Coordinator, and Rick Walker, ACT New Members co-Chairman, will present a brief overview of the Astronomy Club of Tulsa. They'll discuss their club's interests, activities and facilities, and describe their success with IYA 2009 public outreach efforts. In addition, details of the September 26 “SUN” DAY ON SATURDAY at Woolaroc, will be presented. ACT is eager to have Bartlesville volunteers help with solar observing and other daytime astronomical activities during this event, and has also invited us to participate in a catered evening meal followed by an evening of stargazing with ACT members, Woolaroc staff and Woolaroc donors. This will be a good opportunity for us to get to know and collaborate with ACT members, as well as experience the dark Woolaroc skies.
After the program, we will also briefly discuss the benefits for BAS to rejoin the Astronomical League, and then vote on this proposal.
Hubble's New Vision
The Hubble Space Telescope Repair mission last May has given the telescope a new suite of more sensitive and more efficient instruments that require less observing time than their predecessors. Although Hubble has just now completed final testing and calibration, the unexpected discovery of a dark impact spot on Jupiter by Australian amateur astronomer Anthony Wesley on July 19, prompted NASA to release the first public images from Hubble's new Wide Field Camera 3. On September 9 a set of dramatic new photos attesting to Hubble's enhanced capabilities were released at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C. The set includes multicolor images of galaxies, a densely packed star cluster, the "pillar of creation" and a "butterfly" nebula. With it's new instrumentation, Hubble will study Kuiper belt objects near the edge of the solar system, the birth of planets and the composition and structure of atmospheres around other planets. At the greatest distances, the telescope will make the deepest ever infrared image of the universe, perhaps revealing infant galaxies born when the universe was only 500 million years old. These new, advanced capabilities may also allow Hubble to provide important information about dark energy, the mysterious force accelerating the expansion of the universe.
Help Search for Lunar Ice
The Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) has been in orbit around the Moon since June 23, preparing for the impact of the upper stage of a Centaur rocket, and then itself, into the floor of crater Cabeus A. This crater lies in a region near the lunar south pole, where sunlight never reaches the crater's bottom. Scientists believe that this may be one of the most likely places on the Moon for water ice to accumulate and persist. Not only will LCROSS be diving into the plume caused by the Centaur's impact, attempting to sense hints of water molecules, professional and amateur astronomers on Earth will be observing the plume to gather additional information. NASA has established an observing campaign to encourage amateur astronomers to contribute to these observations. To find out more about how to participate in this opportunity, visit <http://lcross.arc.nasa.gov/observation.htm>.
BAS Yahoo Group Page: http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/BvilleAstro/
BAS Occultations Page: http://myweb.cableone.net/jrgrismore/BAS/Lamberta.html
BAS 2006 Forum Page: http://bas.basicreations.com/
The BAS Yahoo Group is our preferred method of communication, since it is a private site with categories for messages, photos, files and calendar. All members are encouraged to join, so that we can maintain more frequent communication about our astronomical activities and interests.