Apollo Rendezvous 2011

The Miami Valley Astronomical Society

The 41st Annual Apollo Rendezvous

Hosted by

June 10-11, 2011

Apollo Rendezvous is one of the premier annual gatherings of amateur astronomers in the United States. Each year these amateur astronomers meet with friends and colleagues from around the country and the world at the birthplace of aviation, Dayton, Ohio.

This year's event has 4 great speakers presenting a variety of topics followed by our Star Gaze and BBQ at John Bryan State Park Observatory

Door Prizes
Apollo Rendezvous wouldn’t be what it is without door prizes. Be sure to attend and enrich your observing inventory with our great door prizes provided by the MVAS, our vendors, and friends in the astro community. Door Prizes will be drawn at the conclusion of our speaker session on Saturday.

Once again we have great raffle prizes. Watch the website for a list of raffle items.

"Moons of the Solar System."
Speaker: Joe Childers
Using NOAA's Science On a Sphere® projection system, Joe will lead us on a realistic tour of many noteworthy moons relating what is so surprising and amazing about them.

Residing in the education department of the Boonshoft Museum of Natural History, Joe can be found leading students on a Lego Robotic League challenge, presenting spherical data with the Science on a Sphere system, or discussing astronomical events. He holds a M.S. in Physics from Ball State University.

"A Very Large Binocular Telescope"
Speaker: Father James Fahey C.S.C
Notre Dame University has been involved in the Large Binocular Telescope project, which provoked Father Fahey's interest in its design and fabrication.   A visit last September prompted his presentation on the making of this 580 ton instrument. Father Jim Fahey, CSC is a priest of the Congregation of Holy Cross out of Notre Dame Indiana who has been making telescopes and their accessories for 25 years or so. He has many prizes for his work, especially from the Northern Indiana Astronomical Group (NIAG), the Great Lakes Region of the Astronomical League, the Texas Star party and even Australia.

"Roaming Mars, A Personal Perspective"
Speaker: Scott Lever
Scott, a Mission Manager on the Mars Exploration Rovers project, will discuss getting to Mars, working a remote robot on Mars, and some of the science results. Images from the red planet including several 3D images will be displayed.
Currently a Mission Manager on the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) project, Scott joined the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 1984 as a member of the Voyager project team working with the Computer Command Subsystem group. Since Voyager and before MER, he has worked on other projects including Mars Observer, Topex/Poseidon, Cassini/Huygens, and Spitzer. Scott usually works with ground software development and maintenance (command sequence simulation and flight rules) or with flight operations. After graduating from Fairmont East High School (Kettering), Scott received a presidential appointment to the United States Naval Academy in 1979, and holds a MSCS from Azusa Pacific University.

"The Search for Gravitational Waves"
Speaker: Dr. Dale L. Partin
A previous Apollo Rendezvous presenter, Dr. Dale Partin has returned as a presenter for Apollo Rendzvous 2011.

Dr. Partin’s talk will describe various types of astronomy with an emphasis on gravitational wave astronomy and the people who have been involved in it. Dr. Partin has degrees in physics and electrical engineering, and has worked as an applied scientist for 32 years. He is the Outreach Director of the Warren Astronomical Society in Michigan. He is also a fellow of the American Physical Society and a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

"Space Debris in Near-Earth Orbit"
Speaker: Dr. Tamara Whitacre Payne
Dr. Tamara (Mara) Whitacre Payne grew up in Kansas City and her father, a watchmaker, fostered her interest in the Apollo Space Program and astronomy. She graduated from University of Kansas with a Master’s degree in Computational Physics and Astronomy. While there she was the president of the local amateur astronomy club, the Astronomy Associates of Lawrence. At this club, she learned about the night sky, observing techniques, and operating and maintaining telescopes and observatories, star parties, and public lectures. She also directed summer workshops for elementary students in Physics and Astronomy, and was the lead instructor for the KU Summer Astronomy Camp for high school students. She was granted the N. Wyman Storer award for Outstanding Public Service in Astronomy and the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award. For her master’s thesis work, she observed with the .9-meter telescope at the Cerro Tololo Observatory in Chile and studied the pre-Main Sequence population of the open cluster NGC3293.

Her doctorate work at New Mexico State University in astrometry and planetary atmospheres, resulted in a dissertation on solar energetic phenomena in the chromosphere and photosphere. Awarded an Air Force Palace Knight position to complete her research and study space weather and solar energetic activity prediction methods, led to a position on Air Force Laboratory Star Team researching in solar environmental disturbances. She completed her dissertation work in 1993.

After graduation, she moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico and then Maui, Hawaii, to participate in research efforts to explore the spectral characteristics of satellites using the skills she developed in multi-wavelength analysis. She has worked in this field for fourteen years during which, she’s had observing experience on the several Air Force telescopes. While in Albuquerque, she was a research associate for the University of New Mexico Institute for Astrophysics. She taught introductory astronomy and observed with the UNM Capilla Peak Observatory’s 1.2-meter telescope.

Continuing this research in Dayton with her colleague, Dr. Anil Chaudhary at Applied Optimization, she leads the development of two telescope systems, one of which is located at John Bryan Observatory. This research supports the global and national need to track and monitor all man-made objects in space in order to protect human life and billions of dollars of assets world-wide.

Food and Drink
A box lunch will be available for purchase in advance. Please see the Box Lunch Order Form for choices.

As always we will have vendors on site to help with your astronomy needs. Watch the website for a list of vendors who will be attending.

Swap Meet
We will once again have an area set up for our Swap Meet. Have any items you're not using? Bring them to the swap meet to sell. Please mark the registration for if you plan to participate in the swap meet.

Stargaze and BBQ
As with past Apollo Rendezvous we will hold a star gaze and BBQ on Saturday night for all who attend Apollo Rendezvous. The BBQ is held at our dark sky site, John Bryan Observatory inside John Bryan State Park. Bring your scope or check out the views from the many club scopes on display--weather permitting of course. See the BBQ Flyer for more details.

For Information on Apollo Rendezvous contact Bob Connell at ar@mvas.org