Local astronomy events

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“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#1 Jan 30, 2011
One of my all-time favorite constellations will be featured!

-Free Star Party-

Program Name: Orion the Hunter.
February 5th
6:30 pm to 8:30 pm (or later)
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a tour of the winter sky. Orion and his companion constellations will be highlighted. Dress warmly, come early and enjoy a beautiful Dog Canyon Sunset. We will provide hot beverages.
For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#3 Feb 2, 2011
Kepler space telescope spots five Earth-sized planets in our galaxy

Are we alone in the universe? Findings by NASA's Kepler space telescope are making that seem less likely.

NASA scientists have announced Kepler has spotted five planets about the size of Earth, orbiting stars in our galaxy.

These planets are orbiting in what is known as the habitable zone, which puts them at a distance from their suns where liquid water could exist. Liquid water is a key ingredient for life to form.

"In a generation we have gone from extraterrestrial planets being a mainstay of science fiction, to the present, where Kepler has helped turn science fiction into today's reality," said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden.

For the rest of the story:

http://www.cnn.com/2011/US/02/02/nasa.kepler....

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#5 Feb 3, 2011
Bundle up and brave the cold with us. We'll provide the hot beverages to keep you warm!

-Free Star Party-

Program Name: Orion the Hunter.
February 5th
6:30 pm to 8:30 pm (or later)
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a tour of the winter sky. Orion and his companion constellations will be highlighted. Dress warmly, come early and enjoy a beautiful Dog Canyon Sunset. For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

“Sockpuppets SUCK!”

Since: Oct 08

Where my house is

#6 Feb 3, 2011
Wish I could come Barb.... GOnna be in Ohio for my brother's wedding... He scheduled a wedding on Super-Bowl Sunday!! OMG!!!
Tell me I don't love him for giving up the Super Bowl to be at his 3rd wedding!!!

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#7 Feb 3, 2011
WHAT??!! You're going to miss the Super Bowl?? I can't hardly believe that.

BTW, I'll be rooting for the Packers for ya!

;-P

“Sockpuppets SUCK!”

Since: Oct 08

Where my house is

#8 Feb 3, 2011
BarbMoore wrote:
WHAT??!! You're going to miss the Super Bowl?? I can't hardly believe that.
BTW, I'll be rooting for the Packers for ya!
;-P
Well,
Not EXACTLY missing it...
Heinz Field is showing the game, so we will brave the cold to watch it from the stadium.... But the STEELERS will win!

“Sockpuppets SUCK!”

Since: Oct 08

Where my house is

#9 Feb 3, 2011
BarbMoore wrote:
WHAT??!! You're going to miss the Super Bowl?? I can't hardly believe that.
BTW, I'll be rooting for the Packers for ya!
;-P
I was gonna take Heather to Dallas to see the game in person.....

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#10 Feb 4, 2011
The Oliver Lee Memorial State Park has cancelled the star party for Saturday February 5th due to the extremely cold weather.

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#11 Feb 27, 2011
***Free Star Party***

Program Name: The Great Hexagon.
March 5, 2011
Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (or later)
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a tour of the major constellations of the Great Hexagon, such as Taurus, Auriga and Gemini. Dress warmly, come early and enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. We'll provide the warm beverages!
For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#13 Mar 1, 2011
---Bump---

***Free Star Party***

Program Name: The Great Hexagon.
Saturday March 5, 2011
Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (or later)
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a tour of the major constellations of the Great Hexagon, such as Taurus, Auriga and Gemini. Dress warmly, come early and enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. We'll provide the warm beverages!
For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#14 Mar 3, 2011
***Free Star Party***

Program Name: The Great Hexagon.
Saturday March 5, 2011
Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (or later)
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a tour of the major constellations of the Great Hexagon, such as Taurus, Auriga and Gemini. Dress warmly, come early and enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. We'll provide the warm beverages!
For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#16 Mar 5, 2011
Last bump as a reminder

***Free Star Party***

Program Name: The Great Hexagon.
Saturday March 5, 2011
Time: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm (or later)
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: The Amateur Astronomers Group will be sponsoring a tour of the major constellations of the Great Hexagon, such as Taurus, Auriga and Gemini. Dress warmly, come early and enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. We'll provide the warm beverages!
For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

http://www.astronomersgroup.org/

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#18 Mar 18, 2011
Weekend full moon the biggest in about 20 years

(CNN)-- If the moon looks a little bit bigger and brighter this weekend, there's a reason for that. It is.

Saturday's full moon will be a super "perigee moon" -- the biggest in almost 20 years. This celestial event is far rarer than the famed blue moon, which happens once about every two-and-a-half years.

"The last full moon so big and close to Earth occurred in March of 1993," said Geoff Chester with the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington. "I'd say it's worth a look."

Full moons look different because of the elliptical shape of the moon's orbit. When it's at perigee, the moon is about 31,000 miles (50,000 km) closer to Earth than when it's at the farthest point of its orbit, also known as apogee.

"Nearby perigee moons are about 14% bigger and 30% brighter than lesser moons that occur on the apogee side of the moon's orbit," the NASA website says.

This full moon will rise in the east at sunset and should look especially big at that time because of what's known as the "moon illusion."

"For reasons not fully understood by astronomers or psychologists, low-hanging moons look unnaturally large when they beam through trees, buildings and other foreground objects," according to NASA.

Even though it may look close enough to touch, Saturday's full moon will still be at a healthy distance -- some 211,600 miles (356,577 km) away.

As rare as it is, it may be worth a look. Miss it and you'll have to wait until 2029 to see it again

http://www.cnn.com/2011/US/03/18/nasa.moon/in...

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#20 Mar 19, 2011
Don't forget to go outside and check out the super "perigee moon".
WARRIOR

Washington, DC

#21 Mar 20, 2011
BarbMoore wrote:
Don't forget to go outside and check out the super "perigee moon".
We saw it rise above the Sacramentos last night. It was pretty. It wasn't as big as I thought it would be and I can not honestly say it was the biggest moon I have ever seen. What do you think?
Coolrocketdude

Albuquerque, NM

#22 Mar 20, 2011
The perigee (when the Moon is closest to Earth) of the Moon's orbit occurred last night, however it was extremely difficult to tell the difference. The Moon appeared about 2% bigger than the last month's full Moon and next month's full Moon. That's one part in fifty. You couldn't tell the difference if you put them side by side.

However, the difference between the Moon at perigee and apogee (its farthest from Earth each month, just two weeks before and after every perigee), is roughly 14%, and is quite noticeable.
This is because the Moon does not travel around the Earth in a circle, but an elipse.

The takeaway message from all this? Astronomy stories should inspire people to look up and consider the larger universe, but these stories can also educate people in practical thinking for getting through life.

The "supermoon" is similar to the "Mars as big as the Moon" story, a harmless bit of hype.

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#23 Mar 20, 2011
It looked beautiful coming up over the Sacramento mountains last night.

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#24 Mar 27, 2011
-*-*-*Free Star Party*-*-*-

Program Name: The Night Sky a Cultural Clock
Date: April 2, 2011
Time: 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: Enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. Learn about celestial cycles and how early cultures used the night sky to time their daily lives. Join the Amateur Astronomers Group for a tour of the stars and constellations in the dark skies over Oliver Lee Memorial State Park. Hot beverages will be provided.

For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#26 Mar 30, 2011
NASA Spacecraft Snaps 1st Photo of Mercury from Orbit

The first spacecraft ever to circle Mercury has beamed home the first-ever photo taken of the small rocky planet from orbit, showing a stark landscape peppered with craters.

NASA's Messenger spacecraft snapped the new Mercury photo today (March 29) at 5:20 a.m. EDT (0920 GMT). The photo shows the stark gray landscape of southern Mercury, a view that is dominated by a huge impact crater.[See the first photo of Mercury from orbit]

"This image is the first ever obtained from a spacecraft in orbit about the solar system's innermost planet," Messenger mission scientists explained in a statement.

The new Mercury photo shows a region around the south pole of Mercury. A 53-mile (85-kilometer) wide crater called Debussy clearly stands out in the upper right of the image, with bright rays emanating from its center.

A smaller crater called Matabei, which is 15 miles (24 km) wide and is known for its "unusual dark rays," is also visible in the image to the west of the Debussy crater, mission managers explained.

The new Mercury photo was posted to the Messenger mission website managed by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, which is overseeing the flight for NASA.

The photo is the first of 363 snapshots Messenger took during six hours of observations around Mercury. The images are expected to cover previously unseen areas of Mercury, terrain that was missed by Messenger during three previous flybys before it entered orbit.

Messenger arrived at Mercury on March 17, more than 6 1/2 years after its launch from Earth.

The spacecraft paused in its Mercury photo reconnaissance work just long enough to beam the new images back to Earth, mission managers said.

"The Messenger team is currently looking over the newly returned data, which are still continuing to come down," Messenger mission scientists said.

NASA plans to hold a teleconference with reporters on Wednesday to review the latest Mercury discoveries by the Messenger probe. The spacecraft's name is short for the bulky moniker MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging.

The $446 million Messenger probe is expected to spend at least one Earth year studying Mercury from orbit. The spacecraft is in an extremely elliptical orbit that brings it within 124 miles (200 kilometers) of Mercury at the closest point and retreats to more than 9,300 miles (15,000 km) away at the farthest point.

The primary science mission phase will begin on April 4, when Messenger will start mapping the entire surface of Mercury, a process that is expected to require around 75,000 images. Scientists hope the spacecraft will help answer longstanding mysteries over the planet's geology, formation and history.

While Messenger is the first mission ever to orbit around Mercury, it is not the first spacecraft to visit the planet. NASA's Mariner 10 spacecraft flew by the planet three times in the mid-1970s.

Follow SPACE.com for the latest in space science and exploration news on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20110329/sc_spa...

“Our nearest star”

Since: May 09

Alamogordo, NM

#28 Mar 31, 2011
-*-*-*Free Star Party*-*-*-

Program Name: The Night Sky a Cultural Clock
Date: April 2, 2011
Time: 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm
Location: Oliver Lee Memorial State Park Group Shelter

Description: Enjoy the beauty of Dog Canyon at sundown. Learn about celestial cycles and how early cultures used the night sky to time their daily lives. Join the Amateur Astronomers Group for a tour of the stars and constellations in the dark skies over Oliver Lee Memorial State Park. Hot beverages will be provided.

For information call:
5 7 5 - 4 3 7 - 8 2 8 4

http://www.astronomersgroup.org/

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