General Interest

General interest stories.

We held 2 events this weekend

We held 2 events this weekend and a Big Thank YOU goes out to:

Dick Swan, Lori Cutright, Don Taylor, Joe Tarkany, Mike Baker, Carl Allen, John d'Entremont, Jim Ventling, Mark Forsthoefel for their help with the Boy Scouts at JB. With 50 in attendance they were shown around the observatory and even were able to view Saturn before the clouds took over.

At Buck Creek we had Rick Weiss, Linda Weiss and Bob Connell the Boy Scouts there weren't so lucky the clouds filled the night sky.

Apollo Rendezvous 2009

Thank You
The Miami Valley Astronomical Society
The Astronomical League

Messier Marathon is Saturday

Saturday is the Messier Marathon at JB. The weather looks like it is going to co-operate this year. The MVAS Messier Marathon is held always held on the weekend of the new moon in March. It is possible on this weekend to see all of the Messier objects in one night. (Yes, this is an all night event.) This event is closed to the general public, but you are welcome to bring a personal friend.

International Year of Astronomy links

Check out these International Year of Astronomy links: -- International Year of Astronomy website -- IYA guide for March -- link to IYA activities at Boonshoft -- a blog about the daily life of professional astronomers

The Archaeoastronomy of SunWatch

by Wade Allen, former Curator of Astronomy for the Dayton Society of Natural History

SunWatch will capitalize on the worldwide celebration, the International Year of Astronomy, honoring the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s first use of an astronomical telescope, for the 2009 Lecture Series Archaeoastronomy in the Americas.

Interestingly, native cultures have studied the night sky for thousands of years and utilized astronomical markers to keep track of the seasons as they laid our their communities. As an archaeoastronomy site, SunWatch was constructed in a complex way by the Fort Ancient people using the Sun to chart the location of its structures, as well as to plan planting and harvesting schedules.

The SunWatch Lecture Series is free and open to the public, beginning at 10:30 a.m. and concluding by 12:00 noon. Admission fees apply for guests wishing to explore the Village or the Interpretive Center before or after the presentations.

Please visit their site at

BoonShoft Museum Newsletter features Astronomy Department

This month's newsletter for the Boonshoft Museum features its Astronomy Department. Please check out the newsletter at

Solar Flare Surprise

Hubble Telescope Finds Carbon Dioxide on an Extrasolar Planet

December 09, 2008

PASADENA, Calif. -- NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of a planet orbiting another star. This breakthrough is an important step toward finding chemical biotracers of extraterrestrial life.

The Jupiter-sized planet, called HD 189733b, is too hot for life. But the Hubble observations are a proof-of-concept demonstration that the basic chemistry for life can be measured on planets orbiting other stars.

Preparing for a Walk on the Moon

Astronomers Discover that the Earth's Magnetotail Charges the Surface of the Moon
October 1, 2008

Astrophysicists found that the moon's surface becomes electrified during each full moon. The moon passes through the Earth's magnetotail, a cone of highly-charged particles, for about 6 days each month. On the side of the moon facing the sun, ultraviolet particles disrupt the electromagnetic effect, keeping the voltage at low levels, but on the dark side, the voltage can reach hundreds or thousands of volts.

Biggest Full Moon of the Year

Biggest Full Moon of the Year

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