TELESCOPES! MAKE THEM-USE THEM-FIX THEM!
Next session - Wednesday, June 1st - 7:00pm
TAAS has a wonderful special interest group-Amateur Telescope Making/Maintenance-which meets the first and third Wednesdays of each month (see our calendar). Members and the public alike are welcome to visit, learn more about the opportunities, bring in a telescope for assistance, begin a telescope from scratch or just ask questions.
OAK FLAT PUBLIC STAR PARTY
SATURDAY, JUNE 11th-OAK FLAT PICNIC GROUNDS
We again forward to the dark skies of Oak Flat, the many and varied TAAS telescopes surrounding the observing field and thank the Tijeras Ranger Station for their generosity in donating this area. The Oak Flat Star Parties are a tradition of the season, and we anticipate clear skies and just enough rain in between to keep the area out of fire danger!
Go nine miles south of Tijeras on #337 to the Oak Flat exit on the left; one mile more to the Oak Flat Picnic Grounds, turn left and follow the signs. Gates to parking and field access will open at 5:30pm and sunset is at 8:21pm--be sure to arrive early to get parked, oriented and talk with members and visitors.
We will have both the Juniper and Yucca areas available for parking ( restrooms are at Yucca only). There will be signs at the entrance to Oak Flat Picnic grounds indicating directions for parking and for telescope owners to access the field. Remember to bring water, any food you wish (there are picnic tables available) and warm layers for the evening chill.
Our first Oak Flat Star Party of the year was smaller than usual, due to cloudy skies (which then opened for us for about an hour and a half) and a motorcycle accident closing the #337 road for hours.
We hope for another season as successful as the one in 2015, giving us the opportunity to observe with the public and show them--and ourselves-- the wonders of New Mexico skies, the planets, the Milky Way and all the deep-sky objects.
The dates for the rest of the summer are as follows: . July 23rd, August 27th and September 10th
See below for map.
TAAS GENERAL MEETING
JUNE 18, 2016 - 7:00PM - SCIENCE AND MATH LEARNING CENTER
Featuring our guest speaker, Author Loretta Hall
"Anniversaries and Activities in Space Exploration"
Since 1961, many remarkable events have taken place in space exploration. The United States sent its first astronauts into space 55 years ago. Ten years later, the Apollo 14 crew explored the Moon’s surface with a hand-pulled equipment cart and performed extraterrestrial athletic events; since then, America and other countries have accomplished important missions and experienced a few disasters. Unmanned space probes and both ground-based and orbiting telescopes are revealing enormous amounts of information about the extraterrestrial universe.
In this presentation, space history author Loretta Hall will describe half a dozen of these milestones and offer ideas for how all can participate in space experiences from the past, present, and future. Join her in celebrating the human desire to understand what lies beyond our own planet.
See below for bio and map
TAAS ASTRONOMY 101
SATURDAY, JUNE 18TH - 6:00pm - SCIENCE & MATH LEARNING CENTER, UNM CAMPUS
"HOW DO WE KNOW?" - Barry Spletzer
Astronomers make some pretty wild statements, like that Saturn weighs 600 septillion tons, the surface of Sirius is 18,000 F, and the Sun's atmosphere contains iron. No one has ever weighed Saturn, taken a thermometer to Sirius or sampled the Sun's atmosphere so how do astronomers figure this stuff out?
Come to Astronomy 101 and find out. Barry will explain this and much more about how we've determined so much about the universe without ever leaving home.
Solar Astronomy, observing our nearest star, the Sun, is a very active and popular part of TAAS. Its events are too numerous to list here, so please go to the "Solar Astronomy" link on the left of the main page for a full schedule of solar observing.
Remember, you don't have to stay up late at night to see a star!
Friday Nights at the UNM Observatory will take a break until the beginning of the fall semester after a very active spring semester. Enjoy the summer and the New Mexico night skies and see you in August!
The TAAS-UNMO coordinator, Fernando Torres, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions or need further information
See below for details and map
The Challenge is now available for May 2016, and archives of past months are at your fingertips.
Every month this information is changed to whet your appetite for even more observing so get that scope out and take advantage of those clear nights! This does not appear by magic, but is sustained thanks to Gordon Schaefering and Dee Friesen.
Each month, there is a test for Binoculars, Double Star, Deep Sky Object and the Challenge Object--think of it as a game for your telescope or binoculars. If you combine this with your GNTO, Star Party and Observer SIG stargazing, you are getting quite a workout!
So take the Challenge.