Science.gov

Sample records for largest astronomical project

  1. Astronomer's new guide to the galaxy: largest map of cold dust revealed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-07-01

    "pathfinder" for ALMA -- it is based on a prototype antenna constructed for the ALMA project, it is located on the same plateau and will find many targets that ALMA will be able to study in extreme detail. The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), an international astronomy facility, is a partnership of Europe, North America and East Asia in cooperation with the Republic of Chile. ESO is the European partner in ALMA. ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence, is a revolutionary telescope, comprising an array of 66 giant 12-metre and 7-metre diameter antennas observing at millimetre and submillimetre wavelengths. ALMA will start scientific observations in 2011. ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  2. Project ASTRO: How-To Manual for Teachers and Astronomers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Richter, Jessica; Fraknoi, Andrew

    Project ASTRO is an innovative program to support science education by linking teachers and students in grades 4-9 with amateur and professional astronomers with the overall goal being to increase students' interest in astronomy and science in general. This manual was designed for teachers, amateur and professional astronomers, youth group…

  3. The Russian-Ukrainian Observatories Network for the European Astronomical Observatory Route Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrievsky, S. M.; Bondar, N. I.; Karetnikov, V. G.; Kazantseva, L. V.; Nefedyev, Y. A.; Pinigin, G. I.; Pozhalova, Zh. A.; Rostopchina-Shakhovskay, A. N.; Stepanov, A. V.; Tolbin, S. V.

    2011-09-01

    In 2004,the Center of UNESCO World Heritage has announced a new initiative "Astronomy & World Heritage" directed for search and preserving of objects,referred to astronomy,its history in a global value,historical and cultural properties. There were defined a strategy of thematic programme "Initiative" and general criteria for selecting of ancient astronomical objects and observatories. In particular, properties that are situated or have significance in relation to celestial objects or astronomical events; representations of sky and/or celestial bodies and astronomical events; observatories and instruments; properties closely connected with the history of astronomy. In 2005-2006,in accordance with the program "Initiative", information about outstanding properties connected with astronomy have been collected.In Ukraine such work was organized by astronomical expert group in Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory. In 2007, Nikolaev observatory was included to the Tentative List of UNESCO under # 5116. Later, in 2008, the network of four astronomical observatories of Ukraine in Kiev,Crimea, Nikolaev and Odessa,considering their high authenticities and integrities,was included to the Tentative List of UNESCO under # 5267 "Astronomical Observatories of Ukraine". In 2008-2009, a new project "Thematic Study" was opened as a successor of "Initiative". It includes all fields of astronomical heritage from earlier prehistory to the Space astronomy (14 themes in total). We present the Ukraine-Russian Observatories network for the "European astronomical observatory Route project". From Russia two observatories are presented: Kazan Observatory and Pulkovo Observatory in the theme "Astronomy from the Renaissance to the mid-twentieth century".The description of astronomical observatories of Ukraine is given in accordance with the project "Thematic study"; the theme "Astronomy from the Renaissance to the mid-twentieth century" - astronomical observatories in Kiev,Nikolaev and Odessa; the

  4. The League of Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Nancy H.; Brandel, A.; Paat, A. M.; Schmitz, D.; Sharma, R.; Trujillo, J.; Laws, C. S.

    2014-01-01

    The League of Astronomers is committed to engaging the University of Washington (UW) and the greater Seattle communities through outreach, research, and events. Since its re-founding two years ago, the LOA has provided a clear connection between the UW Astronomy Department, undergraduate students, and members of the public. Weekly outreach activities such as public star parties and planetarium talks in both the UW Planetarium and the Mobile Planetarium have connected enthusiastic LOA volunteers with hundreds of public observers. In addition, collaboration with organizations like the Seattle Astronomical Society and the UW Society of Physics Students has allowed the LOA to reach an even greater audience. The club also provides opportunities for undergraduate students to participate in research projects. The UW Student Radio Telescope (SRT) and the Manastash Ridge Observatory (MRO) both allow students to practice collecting their own data and turning it into a completed project. Students have presented many of these research projects at venues like the UW Undergraduate Research Symposium and meetings of the American Astronomical Society. For example, the LOA will be observing newly discovered globular clusters at the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory (DAO) in Victoria, B.C. and constructing color-magnitude diagrams. The LOA also helps engage students with the Astronomy major through a variety of events. Bimonthly seminars led by graduate students on their research and personal experiences in the field showcase the variety of options available for students in astronomy. Social events hosted by the club encourage peer mentoring and a sense of community among the Astronomy Department’s undergraduate and graduate students. As a part of one of the nation’s largest undergraduate astronomy programs, members of the League of Astronomers have a unique opportunity to connect and interact with not only the Seattle public but also the greater astronomical community.

  5. Astronomers Break Ground on Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) - World's Largest Millimeter Wavelength Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2003-11-01

    , operations will be conducted from the Operations Support Facility ( ALMA OSF) , a compound located at a more comfortable altitude of 2,900 metres, between the cities of Toconao and San Pedro de Atacama. Phase 1 of the ALMA Project, which included the design and development, was completed in 2002. The beginning of Phase 2 happened on February 25, 2003, when the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and the US National Science Foundation (NSF) signed a historic agreement to construct and operate ALMA , cf. ESO PR 04/03 . Construction will continue until 2012; however, initial scientific observations are planned already from 2007, with a partial array of the first antennas. ALMA 's operation will progressively increase until 2012 with the installation of the remaining antennas. The entire project will cost approximately 600 million Euros. Earlier this year, the ALMA Board selected Professor Massimo Tarenghi , formerly manager of ESO's VLT Project, to become ALMA Director. He is confident that he and his team will succeed: "We may have a lot of hard work in front of us" , he said, "but all of us in the team are excited about this unique project. We are ready to work for the international astronomical community and to provide them in due time with an outstanding instrument allowing trailblazing research projects in many different fields of modern astrophysics" . How ALMA will work ALMA will be composed of 64 high-precision antennas, each 12 metres in diameter. The ALMA antennas can be repositioned, allowing the telescope to function much like the zoom lens on a camera. At its largest, ALMA will be 14 kilometers across. This will allow the telescope to observe fine-scale details of astronomical objects. At its smallest configuration, approximately 150 meters across, ALMA will be able to study the large-scale structures of these same objects. ALMA will function as an interferometer (according to the same basic principle as the VLT Interferometer (VLTI) at Paranal). This means that it

  6. Astronomy Legacy Project - Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barker, Thurburn; Castelaz, Michael W.; Rottler, Lee; Cline, J. Donald

    2016-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) is a not-for-profit public foundation in North Carolina dedicated to providing hands-on educational and research opportunities for a broad cross-section of users in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. In November 2007 a Workshop on a National Plan for Preserving Astronomical Photographic Data (2009ASPC,410,33O, Osborn, W. & Robbins, L) was held at PARI. The result was the establishment of the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) at PARI. In late 2013 PARI began ALP (Astronomy Legacy Project). ALP's purpose is to digitize an extensive set of twentieth century photographic astronomical data housed in APDA. Because of the wide range of types of plates, plate dimensions and emulsions found among the 40+ collections, plate digitization will require a versatile set of scanners and digitizing instruments. Internet crowdfunding was used to assist in the purchase of additional digitization equipment that were described at AstroPlate2014 Plate Preservation Workshop (www.astroplate.cz) held in Prague, CZ, March, 2014. Equipment purchased included an Epson Expression 11000XL scanner and two Nikon D800E cameras. These digital instruments will compliment a STScI GAMMA scanner now located in APDA. GAMMA will be adapted to use an electroluminescence light source and a digital camera with a telecentric lens to achieve high-speed high-resolution scanning. The 1μm precision XY stage of GAMMA will allow very precise positioning of the plate stage. Multiple overlapping CCD images of small sections of each plate, tiles, will be combined using a photo-mosaic process similar to one used in Harvard's DASCH project. Implementation of a software pipeline for the creation of a SQL database containing plate images and metadata will be based upon APPLAUSE as described by Tuvikene at AstroPlate2014 (www.astroplate.cz/programs/).

  7. Astronomical Prospecting of Asteroid Resources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elvis, M.

    2017-09-01

    To make asteroid mining profitable will require professional astronomers using some of the largest telescopes on Earth to make precision measurements. This "astronomical prospecting" information is cheaper to obtain than flying even one or two spacecraft and will drastically cut the number of space probes that have to be sent to find an ore-bearing rock in space. Astronomical prospecting could make the business case for asteroid mining a solid one.

  8. The Astronomical League

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevens, J. A.; Stevens, B. L.

    2000-10-01

    Founded over fifty years ago, the League is the largest general astronomy society in the world. It is a recognized non-profit, educational organization, promoting the science of astronomy. This includes astronomical education, research, individual observing of the heavens and coordination between the amateur and professional astronomy communities. The Astronomical League publishes a quarterly newsletter, the "Reflector", which details amateur activities and amateur collaboration with professional astronomers. The League's Observing Clubs hone the skills of the amateur astronomer in using their telescopes. These clubs provide awards to encourge observing and learning the sky. More general awards are presented to encourage amateur astronomy and the science of astronomy. These include the National Young Astronomer Award, amd the Horkheimer Planetary Imaging Award. They also sponsor conventions on both the National and Regional levels. This year's national is in Ventura, California, next year, near Washington, D.C.

  9. The PACA Project: When Amateur Astronomers Become Citizen Scientists

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, P. A.

    2014-12-01

    The Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy (PACA) project evolved from the observational campaign of C/2012 S1 or C/ISON in 2013. Following the success of the professional-amateur astronomer collaboration in scientific research via social media, it is now implemented in other comet observing campaigns. While PACA identifies a consistent collaborative approach to pro-am collaborations, given the volume of data generated for each campaign, new ways of rapid data analysis, mining access and storage are needed. Several interesting results emerged from the synergistic inclusion of both social media and amateur astronomers: (1) the establishment of a network of astronomers and related professionals, that can be galvanized into action on short notice to support observing campaigns; (2) assist in various science investigations pertinent to the campaign; (3) provide an alert-sounding mechanism should the need arise; (4) immediate outreach and dissemination of results via our media/blogger members; (5) provide a forum for discussions between the imagers and modelers to help strategize the observing campaign for maximum benefit. In 2014, two new comet observing campaigns involving pro-am collaborations have been initiated: (1) C/2013 A1 (C/SidingSpring) and (2) 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (CG), target for ESA/Rosetta mission. The evolving need for individual customized observing campaigns has been incorporated into the evolution of PACA portal that currently is focused on comets: from supporting observing campaigns of current comets, legacy data, historical comets; interconnected with social media and a set of shareable documents addressing observational strategies; consistent standards for data; data access, use, and storage, to align with the needs of professional observers. The integration of science, observations by professional and amateur astronomers, and various social media provides a dynamic and evolving collaborative partnership between professional and amateur astronomers

  10. Astronomy Against Terrorism: an Educational Astronomical Observatory Project in Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishitsuka, M.; Montes, H.; Kuroda, T.; Morimoto, M.; Ishitsuka, J.

    2003-05-01

    The Cosmos Coronagraphic Observatory was completely destroyed by terrorists in 1988. In 1995, in coordination with the Minister of Education of Peru, a project to construct a new Educational Astronomical Observatory has been executed. The main purpose of the observatory is to promote an interest in basic space sciences in young students from school to university levels, through basic astronomical studies and observations. The planned observatory will be able to lodge 25 visitors; furthermore an auditorium, a library and a computer room will be constructed to improve the interest of people in astronomy. Two 15-cm refractor telescopes, equipped with a CCD camera and a photometer, will be available for observations. Also a 6-m dome will house a 60-cm class reflector telescope, which will be donated soon, thanks to a fund collected and organized by the Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory in Japan. In addition a new modern planetarium donated by the Government of Japan will be installed in Lima, the capital of Peru. These installations will be widely open to serve the requirements of people interested in science.

  11. Historical Archives in Italian Astronomical Observatories: The ``Specola 2000'' Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chinnici, I.; Mandrino, A.; Bònoli, F.

    2006-12-01

    Italy's well-consolidated tradition in astronomy is fully witnessed by its rich archival heritage. Astronomical records are stored in many observatories and universities, as well as in libraries and in private institutions. In 2000 a project was promoted to arrange and produce inventories of all material kept in Italian observatory archives. The project was planned by the Società Astronomica Italiana, and financial support was provided by the Italian Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali. In this paper, the results obtained thus far are presented and commented on.

  12. Preservation and maintenance of the astronomical sites in Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2008-01-01

    Astronomy in Armenia was popular since ancient times. There are signs of astronomical observations coming from a few thousands years ago. Two ancient observatories, Karahunge and Metzamor are especially well known. Karahunge is the Armenian twin of the Stonehenge and is even older. However, there is no proper attention from the state authorities and efforts are needed for preservation of such historical-astronomical monuments. The Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO) is the modern famous Armenian observatory founded in 1946 by the outstanding scientist Victor Ambartsumian. It was one of the world astronomical centres in 1950-s to 1970-s, and at present is the largest observatory in the Middle East area. As the ancient astronomical sites, Byurakan also needs a proper attitude from the state authorities and corresponding international organizations to preserve its values and importance for the present and future astronomical activities in the region, including its rich observational archive, telescopes, and human resources. Despite all the difficulties, the Armenian astronomers keep high international level of research and display various activities organizing international meetings and schools, preparing new young generation for the future research. The Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS) is an affiliated member of EAS. Armenia has its Virtual Observatory project (ArVO) as well. The next Joint European and National Astronomy Meeting (JENAM-2007) will be held in Yerevan, Armenia, in August 2007. There are plans to organize astronomical tours to Armenia for making observations from various sites, including the ancient observatories. The future of astronomy in Armenia strongly depends on all of this activities and the proper attention both from state authorities and society.

  13. Astronomical large projects managed with MANATEE: management tool for effective engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Vargas, M. L.; Mujica-Alvarez, E.; Pérez-Calpena, A.

    2012-09-01

    This paper describes MANATEE, which is the Management project web tool developed by FRACTAL, specifically designed for managing large astronomical projects. MANATEE facilitates the management by providing an overall view of the project and the capabilities to control the three main projects parameters: scope, schedule and budget. MANATEE is one of the three tools of the FRACTAL System & Project Suite, which is composed also by GECO (System Engineering Tool) and DOCMA (Documentation Management Tool). These tools are especially suited for those Consortia and teams collaborating in a multi-discipline, complex project in a geographically distributed environment. Our Management view has been applied successfully in several projects and currently is being used for Managing MEGARA, the next instrument for the GTC 10m telescope.

  14. Model based systems engineering for astronomical projects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karban, R.; Andolfato, L.; Bristow, P.; Chiozzi, G.; Esselborn, M.; Schilling, M.; Schmid, C.; Sommer, H.; Zamparelli, M.

    2014-08-01

    Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) is an emerging field of systems engineering for which the System Modeling Language (SysML) is a key enabler for descriptive, prescriptive and predictive models. This paper surveys some of the capabilities, expectations and peculiarities of tools-assisted MBSE experienced in real-life astronomical projects. The examples range in depth and scope across a wide spectrum of applications (for example documentation, requirements, analysis, trade studies) and purposes (addressing a particular development need, or accompanying a project throughout many - if not all - its lifecycle phases, fostering reuse and minimizing ambiguity). From the beginnings of the Active Phasing Experiment, through VLT instrumentation, VLTI infrastructure, Telescope Control System for the E-ELT, until Wavefront Control for the E-ELT, we show how stepwise refinements of tools, processes and methods have provided tangible benefits to customary system engineering activities like requirement flow-down, design trade studies, interfaces definition, and validation, by means of a variety of approaches (like Model Checking, Simulation, Model Transformation) and methodologies (like OOSEM, State Analysis)

  15. Blind Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, Thomas A.

    2011-01-01

    The phrase "blind astronomer” is used as an allegorical oxymoron. However, there were and are blind astronomers. What of famous blind astronomers? First, it must be stated that these astronomers were not martyrs to their craft. It is a myth that astronomers blind themselves by observing the Sun. As early as France's William of Saint-Cloud (circa 1290) astronomers knew that staring at the Sun was ill-advised and avoided it. Galileo Galilei did not invent the astronomical telescope and then proceed to blind himself with one. Galileo observed the Sun near sunrise and sunset or through projection. More than two decades later he became blind, as many septuagenarians do, unrelated to their profession. Even Isaac Newton temporarily blinded himself, staring at the reflection of the Sun when he was a twentysomething. But permanent Sun-induced blindness? No, it did not happen. For instance, it was a stroke that left Scotland's James Gregory (1638-1675) blind. (You will remember the Gregorian telescope.) However, he died days later. Thus, blindness little interfered with his occupation. English Abbot Richard of Wallingford (circa 1291 - circa 1335) wrote astronomical works and designed astronomical instruments. He was also blind in one eye. Yet as he further suffered from leprosy, his blindness seems the lesser of Richard's maladies. Perhaps the most famous professionally active, blind astronomer (or almost blind astronomer) is Dominique-Francois Arago (1786-1853), director until his death of the powerful nineteenth-century Paris Observatory. I will share other _ some poignant _ examples such as: William Campbell, whose blindness drove him to suicide; Leonhard Euler, astronomy's Beethoven, who did nearly half of his life's work while almost totally blind; and Edwin Frost, who "observed” a total solar eclipse while completely sightless.

  16. Astronomical Station at Vidojevica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ninković, S.; Pejović, N.; Mijajlović, Ž.

    2007-05-01

    Recently a project was started aimed at building a new astronomical station at the mountain of Vidojevica in Serbia (ASV) as an extension of the Astronomical Observatory in Belgrade. The first phase - ASV1 - is planned to be finished during 2006. ASV1 will consist of one observatory dome, a reflector of 60cm aperture, and a dormitory. In this year, the Faculty of Mathematics and its Department of Astronomy applied for the project of reinforcing and upgrading it to ASV2. The project objective is to improve the research capacities in astronomy and applied mathematics in Serbia and Western Balkan.

  17. The PACA Project: Convergence of Scientific Research, Social Media and Citizen Science in the Era of Astronomical Big Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, Padma A.

    2015-08-01

    The Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy (PACA) project promotes and supports the professional-amateur astronomer collaboration in scientific research via social media and has been implemented in several comet observing campaigns. In 2014, two comet observing campaigns involving pro-am collaborations were initiated: (1) C/2013 A1 (C/SidingSpring) and (2) 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (CG), target for ESA/Rosetta mission. The evolving need for individual customized observing campaigns has been incorporated into the evolution of The PACA Project that currently is focused on comets: from supporting observing campaigns of current comets, legacy data, historical comets; interconnected with social media and a set of shareable documents addressing observational strategies; consistent standards for data; data access, use, and storage, to align with the needs of professional observers in the era of astronmical big data. The empowerment of amateur astronomers vis-à-vis their partnerships with the professional scientists creates a new demographic of data scientists, enabling citizen science of the integrated data from both the professional and amateur communities.While PACA identifies a consistent collaborative approach to pro-am collaborations, given the volume of data generated for each campaign, new ways of rapid data analysis, mining access and storage are needed. Several interesting results emerged from the synergistic inclusion of both social media and amateur astronomers. The PACA Project is expanding to include pro-am collaborations on other solar system objects; allow for immersive outreach and include various types of astronomical communities, ranging from individuals, to astronmical societies and telescopic networks. Enabling citizen science research in the era of astronomical big data is a challenge which requires innovative approaches and integration of professional and amateur astronomers with data scientists and some examples of recent projects will be highlighted.

  18. Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS) activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2016-09-01

    A review on the activities and achievements of Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS) and Armenian astronomy in general during the last years is given. ArAS membership, ArAS electronic newsletters (ArASNews), ArAS webpage, Annual Meetings, Annual Prize for Young Astronomers (Yervant Terzian Prize) and other awards, international relations, presence in international organizations, local and international summer schools, science camps, astronomical Olympiads and other events, matters related to astronomical education, astronomical heritage, amateur astronomy, astronomy outreach and ArAS further projects are described and discussed.

  19. Astronomers without borders

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Mike

    2011-06-01

    ``Astronomers Without Borders'' is a new global organisational dedicated to furthering understanding and goodwill across national and cultural boundaries using the universal appeal of astronomy and space science. A growing network of affiliate organisations brings together clubs, magazines and other organizations involved in astronomy and space science. Forums, galleries, video conferences and other interactive technologies are used to connect participants around the world. Sharing of resources and direct connections through travel programs are also planned. One project, ``The World at Night'' (TWAN), has become an Special Project of IYA2009. TWAN creates wide-angle images of the night sky in important natural and historic settings around the world, dramatically demonstrating the universal nature and appeal of the night sky. ``Astronomers Without Borders'' is also a leader of the 100 Hours of Astronomy IYA2009 Global Cornerstone Project.

  20. An Astronomer In The Classroom: Observatoire de Paris's Partnership Between Teachers and Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doressoundiram, A.; Barban, C.

    2006-08-01

    The Observatoire de Paris is offering a partnership between teachers and astronomers. The principle is simple: any teacher wishing to undertake a pedagogical project in astronomy, in the classroom or involving the entire school, can request the help of a mentor. An astronomer from the Observatoire de Paris will then follow the teacher's project progress and offer advice and scientific support throughout the school year. The projects may take different forms: construction projects (models, instruments), lectures, posters, exhibitions, etc. The type of assistance offered is as varied as the projects: lecture(s) in class, telephone and e-mail exchanges, visits to the Observatoire; an almost made-to-measure approach that delighted the thirty or so groups that benefited such partnership in the 2005-2006 academic year. And this number is continuously growing. There was a rich variety of projects undertaken, from mounting a show and building a solar clock to visiting a high altitude observatory, or resolving the mystery of Jupiter's great red spot. The Universe and its mysteries fascinate the young (and the not so- young) and provide a multitude of scientific topics that can be exploited in class. Astronomy offers the added advantage of being a multidisciplinary field. Thus, if most projects are generally initiated by a motivated teacher, they are often taken over by teachers in other subjects: Life and Earth Sciences (SVT), history, mathematics, French, and so forth. The project may consist in an astronomy workshop or be part of the school curriculum. Whatever the case, the astronomer's task is not to replace the teacher or the textbooks, but to propose activities or experiments that are easy to implement. Representing the Solar system on a school-yard scale, for instance, is a perfect way to make youngsters realize that the Universe consists mostly of empty space. There is no shortage of topics, and the students' enthusiasm, seldom absent, is the best reward for the

  1. Astronomical Software Directory Service

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.; Payne, Harry; Hayes, Jeffrey

    1997-01-01

    With the support of NASA's Astrophysics Data Program (NRA 92-OSSA-15), we have developed the Astronomical Software Directory Service (ASDS): a distributed, searchable, WWW-based database of software packages and their related documentation. ASDS provides integrated access to 56 astronomical software packages, with more than 16,000 URLs indexed for full-text searching. Users are performing about 400 searches per month. A new aspect of our service is the inclusion of telescope and instrumentation manuals, which prompted us to change the name to the Astronomical Software and Documentation Service. ASDS was originally conceived to serve two purposes: to provide a useful Internet service in an area of expertise of the investigators (astronomical software), and as a research project to investigate various architectures for searching through a set of documents distributed across the Internet. Two of the co-investigators were then installing and maintaining astronomical software as their primary job responsibility. We felt that a service which incorporated our experience in this area would be more useful than a straightforward listing of software packages. The original concept was for a service based on the client/server model, which would function as a directory/referral service rather than as an archive. For performing the searches, we began our investigation with a decision to evaluate the Isite software from the Center for Networked Information Discovery and Retrieval (CNIDR). This software was intended as a replacement for Wide-Area Information Service (WAIS), a client/server technology for performing full-text searches through a set of documents. Isite had some additional features that we considered attractive, and we enjoyed the cooperation of the Isite developers, who were happy to have ASDS as a demonstration project. We ended up staying with the software throughout the project, making modifications to take advantage of new features as they came along, as well as

  2. Armenian Astronomical Society Annual Activities in 2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2015-07-01

    A report is given on the achievements of the Armenian astronomy during the last year and on the present activities of the Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS). ArAS membership, ArAS electronic newsletters (ArASNews), ArAS webpage, annual meetings, Annual Prize for Young Astronomers (Yervant Terzian Prize) and other awards, international relations, presence in international organizations, summer schools, astronomical Olympiads and other events, matters related to astronomical education, astronomical heritage, astronomy outreach and ArAS further projects are discussed. The present meeting, BAO Science Camp, ArAS School lectures are among 2014 events as well.

  3. Astronomical Network for Teachers in Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kramer Hutawarakorn, Busaba; Soonthornthum, Boonraksar; Poshyachinda, Saran

    We report the latest development of a pilot project in establishing the astronomical network for teachers in Thailand. The project has been recently granted by the Institute for the Promotion of Teaching Science and Technology Thailand and operated by Sirindhorn Observatory Chiangmai University. The objectives of the project are (1) to establish a16-inch semi-robotic telescope which can be accessed from schools nationwide; and (2) to establish an educational website in Thai language which contains electronic textbook of astronomy online encyclopedia of astronomy observing projects astronomical database and links to other educational websites worldwide. The network will play important role in the development of teaching and learning astronomy in Thailand.

  4. AWOB: A Collaborative Workbench for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, J. W.; Lemson, G.; Bulatovic, N.; Makarenko, V.; Vogler, A.; Voges, W.; Yao, Y.; Kiefl, R.; Koychev, S.

    2015-09-01

    We present the Astronomers Workbench (AWOB1), a web-based collaboration and publication platform for a scientific project of any size, developed in collaboration between the Max-Planck institutes of Astrophysics (MPA) and Extra-terrestrial Physics (MPE) and the Max-Planck Digital Library (MPDL). AWOB facilitates the collaboration between geographically distributed astronomers working on a common project throughout its whole scientific life cycle. AWOB does so by making it very easy for scientists to set up and manage a collaborative workspace for individual projects, where data can be uploaded and shared. It supports inviting project collaborators, provides wikis, automated mailing lists, calendars and event notification and has a built in chat facility. It allows the definition and tracking of tasks within projects and supports easy creation of e-publications for the dissemination of data and images and other resources that cannot be added to submitted papers. AWOB extends the project concept to larger scale consortia, within which it is possible to manage working groups and sub-projects. The existing AWOB instance has so far been limited to Max-Planck members and their collaborators, but will be opened to the whole astronomical community. AWOB is an open-source project and its source code is available upon request. We intend to extend AWOB's functionality also to other disciplines, and would greatly appreciate contributions from the community.

  5. Korean Astronomical Calendar, Chiljeongsan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Eun Hee

    In fifteenth century Korea, there was a grand project for the astronomical calendar and instrument making by the order of King Sejong 世宗 (1418-1450). During this period, many astronomical and calendrical books including Islamic sources in Chinese versions were imported from Ming 明 China, and corrected and researched by the court astronomers of Joseon 朝鮮 (1392-1910). Moreover, the astronomers and technicians of Korea frequently visited China to study astronomy and instrument making, and they brought back useful information in the form of new published books or specifications of instruments. As a result, a royal observatory equipped with 15 types of instrument was completed in 1438. Two types of calendar, Chiljeongsan Naepyeon 七政算內篇 and Chiljeongsan Oepyeon 七政算外篇, based on the Chinese and Islamic calendar systems, respectively, were published in 1444 with a number of calendrical editions such as corrections and example supplements (假令) including calculation methods and results for solar and lunar eclipses.

  6. Latin American astronomers and the International Astronomical Union

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torres-Peimbert, S.

    2017-07-01

    Selected aspects of the participation of the Latin American astronomers in the International Astronomical Union are presented: Membership, Governing bodies, IAU meetings, and other activities. The Union was founded in 1919 with 7 initial member states, soon to be followed by Brazil. In 1921 Mexico joined, and in 1928 Argentina also formed part of the Union, while Chile joined in 1947. In 1961 Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Venezuela were already member countries. At present (October 2016) 72 countries contribute financially to the Union. The Union lists 12,391 professional astronomers as individual members; of those, 692 astronomers work in Latin America and the Caribbean, from 13 member states (Argentina, Bolivia , Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Honduras, Mexico, Panamá, Perú, Uruguay and Venezuela) as well as from Ecuador and Puerto Rico. This group comprises 5.58% of the total membership, a figure somewhat lower than the fraction of the population in the region, which is 8.6% of the world population. Of the Latin American members, 23.4% are women and 76.6% are men; slightly higher than the whole membership of Union, which is of 16.9%. In the governing bodies it can be mentioned that there have been 2 Presidents of the Union (Jorge Sahade and Silvia Torres-Peimbert), 7 VicePresidents (Guillermo Haro, Jorge Sahade, Manuel Peimbert Claudio Anguita, Silvia Torres-Peimbert, Beatriz Barbuy, and Marta G. Rovira). The IAU meetings held in the region, include 2 General Assemblies (the 1991 XXI GA took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina and the 2009 XXVIII GA, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), 15 Regional Meetings (in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela and Uruguay), 29 Symposia (in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru and Mexico), 5 Colloquia (in Argentina and Mexico), 8 International Schools for Young Astronomers (in Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Honduras and Mexico), and 11 projects sponsored by the Office of Astronomy

  7. Student-to-Scientist (S2S) via the PACA Project: Connecting Astronomers, Educators and Students

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, P. A.

    2015-12-01

    Student to Scientist (S2S), provides pathways for observational and research tools for K-12 and undergraduate students to improve science proficiency through conducting real scientific observations. Our approach lies in the integration of professional and amateur astronomers, educators, students, and communicators to identify multiple paths for the student to become a scientist. I report on the ensuing project, also known as the PACA Project, which is an ecosystem of various activities that take advantage of the social media and immediate connectivity amongst amateur astronomers worldwide and that can be galvanized to participate in a given observing campaign. The PACA Project has participated in organized campaigns such as NASA Comet ISON Observing Campaign in 2013; NASA Comet Integrated Observations Campaign to observe Comet Siding Spring as it flew by very close to Mars on 19 October 2014. Currently the PACA Project is involved in the Ground-based Amateur campaign to observer ESA/Rosetta mission's target, 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (CG) that is en route to its perihelion on 13 August 2015 (at the time of abstract submission). The PACA Project provides access to the professional community and the student/educator and informal/public communities via various social media like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Pinterest, Vimeo, Google+. With the popularity of mobile platforms and instant connections with other peers globally, the multi-faceted social universe has become a vital part of engagement of multiple communities. The PACA project currently has initiated a Comet Tails and Disconnection Events campaign to relate to the changing solar wind conditions. Other PACA projects include Saturn Solstice 2017 and outreach projects with Astroproject (India). These and other citizen-science enabled activities and their integration with S2S project will be discussed.

  8. ESO Signs Largest-Ever European Industrial Contract For Ground-Based Astronomy Project ALMA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-12-01

    ESO, the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere, announced today that it has signed a contract with the consortium led by Alcatel Alenia Space and composed also of European Industrial Engineering (Italy) and MT Aerospace (Germany), to supply 25 antennas for the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) project, along with an option for another seven antennas. The contract, worth 147 million euros, covers the design, manufacture, transport and on-site integration of the antennas. It is the largest contract ever signed in ground-based astronomy in Europe. The ALMA antennas present difficult technical challenges, since the antenna surface accuracy must be within 25 microns, the pointing accuracy within 0.6 arc seconds, and the antennas must be able to be moved between various stations on the ALMA site. This is especially remarkable since the antennas will be located outdoor in all weather conditions, without any protection. Moreover, the ALMA antennas can be pointed directly at the Sun. ALMA will have a collecting area of more than 5,600 square meters, allowing for unprecedented measurements of extremely faint objects. The signing ceremony took place on December 6, 2005 at ESO Headquarters in Garching, Germany. "This contract represents a major milestone. It allows us to move forward, together with our American and Japanese colleagues, in this very ambitious and unique project," said ESO's Director General, Dr. Catherine Cesarsky. "By building ALMA, we are giving European astronomers access to the world's leading submillimetre facility at the beginning of the next decade, thereby fulfilling Europe's desire to play a major role in this field of fundamental research." Pascale Sourisse, Chairman and CEO of Alcatel Alenia Space, said: "We would like to thank ESO for trusting us to take on this new challenge. We are bringing to the table not only our recognized expertise in antenna development, but also our long-standing experience in

  9. Amateur Astronomers As Public Outreach Partners

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, M. A.

    2006-08-01

    Amateur astronomers involved in public outreach represent a huge, largely untapped source of energy and enthusiasm to help astronomers reach the general public. Even though many astronomy educators already work with amateur astronomers, the potential educational impact of amateur astronomers as public outreach ambassadors remains largely unrealized. Surveys and other work by the ASP in the US show that more than 20% of astronomy club members routinely participate in public engagement and educational events, such as public star parties, classroom visits, work with youth and community groups, etc. Amateur astronomers who participate in public outreach events are knowledgeable about astronomy and passionate about sharing their hobby with other people. They are very willing to work with astronomers and astronomy educators. They want useful materials, support, and training. In the USA, the ASP operates "The Night Sky Network," (funded by NASA). We have developed specialized materials and training, tested by and used by amateur astronomers. This project works with nearly 200 local astronomy clubs in 50 states to help them conduct more effective public outreach events. It has resulted in nearly 3,600 outreach events (reaching nearly 300,000 people) in just two years. In this presentation we examine key success factors, lessons learned, and suggest how astronomers outside the US can recruit and work with "outreach amateur astronomers" in their own countries.

  10. Project of space research and technology center in Engelhardt astronomical observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nefedyev, Y.; Gusev, A.; Sherstukov, O.; Kascheev, R.; Zagretdinov, R.

    2012-09-01

    Today on the basis of Engelhardt astronomical observatory (EAO) is created Space research and technology center as consistent with Program for expansion of the Kazan University. The Centre has the following missions: • EDUCATION • SCIENCE • ASTRONOMICAL TOURISM

  11. The Expansion of the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive at PARI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Barker, Thurburn; Castelaz, Michael

    2017-01-01

    A diverse set of photometric, astrometric, spectral and surface brightness data exist on decades of photographic glass plates. The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) was established in November 2007 and is dedicated to the task of collecting, restoring, preserving and storing astronomical photographic data and PARI continues to accept collections. APDA is also tasked with scanning each image and establishing a database of images that can be accessed via the Internet by the global community of scientists, researchers and students. APDA is a new type of astronomical observatory - one that harnesses analog data of the night sky taken for more than a century and making that data available in a digital format.In 2016, APDA expanded from 50 collections with about 220,000 plates to more than 55 collections and more than 340,000 plates and films. These account for more than 30% of all astronomical photographic data in the United States. The largest of the new acquisitions are the astronomical photographic plates in the Yale University collection. We present details of the newly added collections and review of other collections in APDA.

  12. Astronomical Archive at Tartu Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Annuk, K.

    2007-10-01

    Archiving astronomical data is important task not only at large observatories but also at small observatories. Here we describe the astronomical archive at Tartu Observatory. The archive consists of old photographic plate images, photographic spectrograms, CCD direct--images and CCD spectroscopic data. The photographic plate digitizing project was started in 2005. An on-line database (based on MySQL) was created. The database includes CCD data as well photographic data. A PHP-MySQL interface was written for access to all data.

  13. Effectiveness of Amateur Astronomers as Informal Science Educators

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gibbs, Michael G.; Berendsen, Margaret

    2007-01-01

    The Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) conducted a national survey of in-service teachers participating in Project ASTRO. The survey results document (1) the value that teachers place on supplemental astronomy education provided by professional and amateur astronomers, and (2) the difference that teachers perceive in the value provided by…

  14. Scalable Machine Learning for Massive Astronomical Datasets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ball, Nicholas M.; Gray, A.

    2014-04-01

    We present the ability to perform data mining and machine learning operations on a catalog of half a billion astronomical objects. This is the result of the combination of robust, highly accurate machine learning algorithms with linear scalability that renders the applications of these algorithms to massive astronomical data tractable. We demonstrate the core algorithms kernel density estimation, K-means clustering, linear regression, nearest neighbors, random forest and gradient-boosted decision tree, singular value decomposition, support vector machine, and two-point correlation function. Each of these is relevant for astronomical applications such as finding novel astrophysical objects, characterizing artifacts in data, object classification (including for rare objects), object distances, finding the important features describing objects, density estimation of distributions, probabilistic quantities, and exploring the unknown structure of new data. The software, Skytree Server, runs on any UNIX-based machine, a virtual machine, or cloud-based and distributed systems including Hadoop. We have integrated it on the cloud computing system of the Canadian Astronomical Data Centre, the Canadian Advanced Network for Astronomical Research (CANFAR), creating the world's first cloud computing data mining system for astronomy. We demonstrate results showing the scaling of each of our major algorithms on large astronomical datasets, including the full 470,992,970 objects of the 2 Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS) Point Source Catalog. We demonstrate the ability to find outliers in the full 2MASS dataset utilizing multiple methods, e.g., nearest neighbors. This is likely of particular interest to the radio astronomy community given, for example, that survey projects contain groups dedicated to this topic. 2MASS is used as a proof-of-concept dataset due to its convenience and availability. These results are of interest to any astronomical project with large and/or complex

  15. Future Directions for Astronomical Image Display

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mandel, Eric

    2000-01-01

    In the "Future Directions for Astronomical Image Displav" project, the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) and the National Optical Astronomy Observatories (NOAO) evolved our existing image display program into fully extensible. cross-platform image display software. We also devised messaging software to support integration of image display into astronomical analysis systems. Finally, we migrated our software from reliance on Unix and the X Window System to a platform-independent architecture that utilizes the cross-platform Tcl/Tk technology.

  16. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory: Re-engineering access to astronomical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, R. J.; Berriman, G. B.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Emery Bunn, S.; Evans, J.; McGlynn, T. A.; Plante, R.

    2015-06-01

    The US Virtual Astronomical Observatory was a software infrastructure and development project designed both to begin the establishment of an operational Virtual Observatory (VO) and to provide the US coordination with the international VO effort. The concept of the VO is to provide the means by which an astronomer is able to discover, access, and process data seamlessly, regardless of its physical location. This paper describes the origins of the VAO, including the predecessor efforts within the US National Virtual Observatory, and summarizes its main accomplishments. These accomplishments include the development of both scripting toolkits that allow scientists to incorporate VO data directly into their reduction and analysis environments and high-level science applications for data discovery, integration, analysis, and catalog cross-comparison. Working with the international community, and based on the experience from the software development, the VAO was a major contributor to international standards within the International Virtual Observatory Alliance. The VAO also demonstrated how an operational virtual observatory could be deployed, providing a robust operational environment in which VO services worldwide were routinely checked for aliveness and compliance with international standards. Finally, the VAO engaged in community outreach, developing a comprehensive web site with on-line tutorials, announcements, links to both US and internationally developed tools and services, and exhibits and hands-on training at annual meetings of the American Astronomical Society and through summer schools and community days. All digital products of the VAO Project, including software, documentation, and tutorials, are stored in a repository for community access. The enduring legacy of the VAO is an increasing expectation that new telescopes and facilities incorporate VO capabilities during the design of their data management systems.

  17. World's fastest and most sensitive astronomical camera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-06-01

    leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  18. Preserving and Archiving Astronomical Photographic Plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castelaz, M. W.; Cline, J. D.

    2005-05-01

    Astronomical objects change with time. New observations complement past observations recorded on photographic plates. Analyses of changes provide essential routes to information about an object's formation, constitution and evolution. Preserving a century of photographic plate observations is thus of paramount importance. Plate collections are presently widely dispersed; plates may be stored in poor conditions, and are effectively inaccessible to both researchers and historians. We describe a planned project at Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute to preserve the collections of astronomical plates in the United States by gathering them into a single storage location. Collections will be sorted, cleaned, and cataloged on-line so as to provide access to researchers. Full scientific and historic use of the material then requires the observations themselves to be accessible digitally. The project's goal will be the availability of these data as a unique, fully-maintained scientific and educational resource. The new archive will support trans-disciplinary research such as the chemistry of the Earth's atmosphere, library information science, trends in local weather patterns, and impacts of urbanization on telescope use, while the hand-written observatory logs will be a valuable resource for science historians and biographers.

  19. International Astronomical-Cultural Initiatives and Ukrainian Astronomical Heritage in the Context of World Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantseva, L.

    2011-09-01

    Astronomy as science of world view has left its mark in many areas of human culture. Astronomical movable and immovable monuments as cultural and scientific content recently started to be studied carefully, and finally receive their recognition for their further preservation. Various international organizations have initiated a diverse case studies of these monuments, produced some recommendations for their organization, typology, division into periods. In joint programs, experts of IAU, UNESCO, ICOMOS elaborate criteria for selection of monuments of global significance. Complete study of astronomical sights will allow to consider the history of scientific knowledge dissemination in time and in space. Ukraine has also carefully examined their stored astronomical monuments scattered in astronomical observatories, libraries, archives, museums, university collections, architectural ensembles, archaeological parks and cemeteries. In conditions of instability and crises it is important to establish uniqueness or typicality of certain historical sites, to study their characteristics and identity, relationship with global trends that will enable their successful promotion and protection. Part of these research works are conducted in our observatories, but not as intensively as in other countries. They have not engaged in related industries and professionals authorized state institutions. Not having used an active effort in this case, we can stay behind the big international project for study the intellectual and cultural heritage.

  20. Astronomical Data and Information Visualization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goodman, Alyssa A.

    2010-01-01

    As the size and complexity of data sets increases, the need to "see" them more clearly increases as well. In the past, many scientists saw "fancy" data and information visualization as necessary for "outreach," but not for research. In this talk, I wlll demonstrate, using specific examples, why more and more scientists--not just astronomers--are coming to rely upon the development of new visualization strategies not just to present their data, but to understand it. Principal examples will be drawn from the "Astronomical Medicine" project at Harvard's Initiative in Innovative Computing, and from the "Seamless Astronomy" effort, which is co-sponsored by the VAO (NASA/NSF) and Microsoft Research.

  1. Astronomy for Astronomical Numbers: A Worldwide Massive Open Online Class

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Impey, Chris D.; Wenger, Matthew C.; Austin, Carmen L.

    2015-01-01

    Astronomy: State of the Art is a massive, open, online class (MOOC) offered through Udemy by an instructional team at the University of Arizona. With nearly 24,000 enrolled as of early 2015, it is the largest astronomy MOOC available. The astronomical numbers enrolled do not translate into a similar level of engagement. The content consists of 14…

  2. Serbian Astronomers in Science Citation Index in the XX Century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dimitrijevic, Milan S.

    The book is written paralelly in Serbian and English. The presence of works of Serbian astronomers and works in astronomical journals published by other Serbian scientists, in Science Citation Index within the period from 1945 up to the end of 2000, has been analyzed. Also is presented the list of 38 papers which had some influence on the development of astronomy in the twentieth century. A review of the development of astronomy in Serbia in the last century is given as well. Particular attention is payed to the Astronomical Observatory, the principal astronomical institution in Serbia, where it is one of the oldest scientific organizations and the only autonomous astronomical institute. Its past development forms an important part of the history of science and culture in these regions. In the book is also considered and the history of the university teaching of astronomy in Serbia after the second world war. First of all the development of the Chair of Astronomy at the Faculty of Mathematics in Belgrade, but also the teaching of astronomy at University in Novi Sad, Ni and Kragujevac is discussed. In addition to professional Astronomy, well developed in Serbia is also the amateur Astronomy. In the review is first of all included the largest and the oldest organization of amateur-astronomers in Serbia, founded in 1934. Besides, here are the Astronomical Society "Novi Sad", ADNOS and Research Station "Petnica". In Valjevo, within the framework of the Society of researchers "Vladimir Mandic - Manda", there is active also the Astronomical Group. In Kragujevac, on the roof of the Institute of Physics of the Faculty of Sciences, there is the "Belerofont" Observatory. In Ni, at the close of the sixties and the start of the seventies, there was operating a branch of the Astronomical Society "Rudjer Bokovic", while at the Faculty of Philosophy there existed in the period 1976-1980 the "Astro-Geophysical Society". In the year 1996 there was founded Astronomical Society

  3. US Gateway to SIMBAD Astronomical Database

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eichhorn, G.

    1998-01-01

    During the last year the US SIMBAD Gateway Project continued to provide services like user registration to the US users of the SIMBAD database in France. User registration is required by the SIMBAD project in France. Currently, there are almost 3000 US users registered. We also provide user support by answering questions from users and handling requests for lost passwords. We have worked with the CDS SIMBAD project to provide access to the SIMBAD database to US users on an Internet address basis. This will allow most US users to access SIMBAD without having to enter passwords. This new system was installed in August, 1998. The SIMBAD mirror database at SAO is fully operational. We worked with the CDS to adapt it to our computer system. We implemented automatic updating procedures that update the database and password files daily. This mirror database provides much better access to the US astronomical community. We also supported a demonstration of the SIMBAD database at the meeting of the American Astronomical Society in January. We shipped computer equipment to the meeting and provided support for the demonstration activities at the SIMBAD booth. We continued to improve the cross-linking between the SIMBAD project and the Astro- physics Data System. This cross-linking between these systems is very much appreciated by the users of both the SIMBAD database and the ADS Abstract Service. The mirror of the SIMBAD database at SAO makes this connection faster for the US astronomers. The close cooperation between the CDS in Strasbourg and SAO, facilitated by this project, is an important part of the astronomy-wide digital library initiative called Urania. It has proven to be a model in how different data centers can collaborate and enhance the value of their products by linking with other data centers.

  4. The Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy (PACA) Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, Padma A.

    2016-10-01

    The PACA Project is an ecosystem of several social media platforms (Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Flickr, Vimeo) that takes connects professional and amateur astronomers in a common observing campaign. It takes advantage of immediate connectivity amongst amateur astronomers worldwide, that can be galvanized to participate in a given observing campaign and provide observations/data that helps provide a long temporal backdrop for professional data. To date, The PACA Project has participated in organized campaigns such as NASA Comet ISON Observing Campaign in 2013; NASA Comet Integrated Observations Campaign to observe Comet Siding Spring flyby of Mars on 19 October 2014, and currently is participating in the ESA/Rosetta mission's ground-based amateur observing campaign, soon to finish. With several bright comets well placed in the sky, the PACA Project has focused groups for each comet of interest to its members. The PACA Project is now extending its observing campaigns to include planets, namely, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars. The 2014 observing campaign of comet Siding Spring included both comet and Mars amateur astronomers. With Mars, just past its recent opposition and heading towards its perihelic opposition, when it will be its largest size as viewed from Earth, in 2018; with NASA's JUNO spacecraft arrival at Jupiter on 4 July 2016 and NASA/ESA Cassini mission ending its mission to Saturn in 2017, all three planets are targets of amateur observers. The synergy between The PACA Project goals, amateur and professional astronomers translates well into a cohesive paradigm to monitor and observe comets and planets to increase the data on these targets for crowdsourcing. I shall highlight the results from the various campaigns, including various comets, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars and propose various science observing campaigns, resulting in both scientific research and citizen science.

  5. On AIPS++, a new astronomical information processing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Croes, G. A.

    1992-01-01

    The AIPS system that has served the needs of the radio astronomical community remarkably well during the last 15 years is showing signs of age and is being replaced by a more modern system, AIPS++. As the name implies, AIPS++ will be developed in a object oriented fashion and will use C++ as its main programming language. The work is being done by a consortium of seven organizations, with coordinated activities worldwide. After a review of the history of the project to this date from management, astronomical and technical viewpoints, and the current state of the project, the paper concentrates on the tradeoffs implied by the choice of implementation style and the lessons we have learned, good and bad.

  6. Alexander the Great's Tomb at Siwa: The Astronomical Orientation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papathanassiou, M.; Souvaltzis, Em.; Souvaltzi, L.; Moussas, X.

    A preliminary report on the possible astronomical orientation of the Tomb of Alexander the Great, recently found and excavated by the greek archaeologist Liana Souvaltzi. The tomb is a greek building of doric style. Its enormous dimensions make it the largest amongst the found macedonian tombs (much bigger than the tomb of Philip II, Alexander's father). The tomb faces generally south---west and its orientation could be related either to the constellation of Centaurus or to the star Canopus. The walls of the two long sides of the building have strickingly different widhts. Moreover each wall has three doors (opposite in pairs) of slightly different sizes. We examine the possibility the openings of the doors and their assymetries to be designed and constructed according to some astronomical (solar or stellar) orientations.

  7. Astronomical Orientation in the Ancient Dacian Sanctuaries of Romania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stănescu, Florin

    Sarmizegetusa Regia, the former capital city of the Dacians' kingdom, is situated in the Şureanu (Orăştie) Mountains in the Southern Carpathians, Romania. This chapter reviews, from the astronomical point of view, two of the monuments located on its Sacred Terrace - the altar known as the "Andesite Sun" and the Central Apse of the Great Round Sanctuary - as well as sanctuaries at the nearby site of Costeşti. Astronomical analyses taking into consideration (a) the astronomical-geometrical methods of the time (the analemma of a sundial after Vitruvius and the stereographical projection in the sense of Hipparchus), (b) astronomical instruments of the time (the gnomon, the sundial and the astrolabe), and (c) other instruments known to the Dacians (the compass), have concluded that these monuments may have enabled the Dacians to carry out a number of astronomical observations. This would confirm several reports by contemporary historians regarding the Dacians' knowledge of astronomy.

  8. Infrared Astronomical Satellite View of the Sky

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2009-11-03

    Nearly the entire sky, as seen in infrared wavelengths and projected at one-half degree resolution, is shown in this image, assembled from six months of data from the NASA Infrared Astronomical Satellite, or IRAS.

  9. The Most Popular Astronomical Web Server in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Chenzhou; Zhao, Yongheng

    Affected by the consistent depressibility of IT economy free homepage space is becoming less and less. It is more and more difficult to construct websites for amateur astronomers who do not have ability to pay for commercial space. In last May with the support of Chinese National Astronomical Observatory and Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope project we setup a special web server (amateur.lamost.org) to provide free huge stable and no-advertisement homepage space to Chinese amateur astronomers and non-professional organizations. After only one year there has been more than 80 websites hosted on the server. More than 10000 visitors from nearly 40 countries visit the server and the amount of data downloaded by them exceeds 4 Giga-Bytes per day. The server has become the most popular amateur astronomical web server in China. It stores the most abundant Chinese amateur astronomical resources. Because of the extremely success our service has been drawing tremendous attentions from related institutions. Recently Chinese National Natural Science Foundation shows great interest to support the service. In the paper the emergence of the thought construction of the server and its present utilization and our future plan are introduced

  10. The Ilgarijiri Project: A collaboration between Aboriginal communities and radio astronomers in the Murchison Region of Western Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldsmith, John

    2014-07-01

    The international radio astronomy initiative known as the Square Kilometre Array is a cutting-edge science project, aimed atdramatically expanding our vision and understanding of the Universe. The $2billion+ international project is being shared between Southern Africa and Australia. The Australian component, centred in the Murchison region of Western Australia, is based upon collaboration with Aboriginal communities. A collaborative project called "Ilgarijiri- Things Belonging to the Sky" shared scientific and Aboriginal knowledge of the night sky. Through a series of collaborative meetings and knowledge sharing, the Ilgarijiri project developed and showcased Aboriginal knowledge of the night sky, via an international touring Aboriginal art exhibition, in Australia, South Africa, the USA and Europe. The Aboriginal art exhibition presents Aboriginal stories relating to the night sky, which prominently feature the 'Seven Sisters' and the 'Emu', as well as the collaborative experience with radio astronomers. The success of the Ilgarijiri collaborative project is based upon several principles, which can help to inform and guide future cultural collaborative projects.

  11. Scalable Machine Learning for Massive Astronomical Datasets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ball, Nicholas M.; Astronomy Data Centre, Canadian

    2014-01-01

    We present the ability to perform data mining and machine learning operations on a catalog of half a billion astronomical objects. This is the result of the combination of robust, highly accurate machine learning algorithms with linear scalability that renders the applications of these algorithms to massive astronomical data tractable. We demonstrate the core algorithms kernel density estimation, K-means clustering, linear regression, nearest neighbors, random forest and gradient-boosted decision tree, singular value decomposition, support vector machine, and two-point correlation function. Each of these is relevant for astronomical applications such as finding novel astrophysical objects, characterizing artifacts in data, object classification (including for rare objects), object distances, finding the important features describing objects, density estimation of distributions, probabilistic quantities, and exploring the unknown structure of new data. The software, Skytree Server, runs on any UNIX-based machine, a virtual machine, or cloud-based and distributed systems including Hadoop. We have integrated it on the cloud computing system of the Canadian Astronomical Data Centre, the Canadian Advanced Network for Astronomical Research (CANFAR), creating the world's first cloud computing data mining system for astronomy. We demonstrate results showing the scaling of each of our major algorithms on large astronomical datasets, including the full 470,992,970 objects of the 2 Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS) Point Source Catalog. We demonstrate the ability to find outliers in the full 2MASS dataset utilizing multiple methods, e.g., nearest neighbors, and the local outlier factor. 2MASS is used as a proof-of-concept dataset due to its convenience and availability. These results are of interest to any astronomical project with large and/or complex datasets that wishes to extract the full scientific value from its data.

  12. The 100-C-7 Remediation Project. An Overview of One of DOE's Largest Remediation Projects - 13260

    SciTech Connect

    Post, Thomas C.; Strom, Dean; Beulow, Laura

    The U.S. Department of Energy Richland Operations Office (RL), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Washington Closure Hanford LLC (WCH) completed remediation of one of the largest waste sites in the U.S. Department of Energy complex. The waste site, 100-C-7, covers approximately 15 football fields and was excavated to a depth of 85 feet (groundwater). The project team removed a total of 2.3 million tons of clean and contaminated soil, concrete debris, and scrap metal. 100-C-7 lies in Hanford's 100 B/C Area, home to historic B and C Reactors. The waste site was excavated in two parts as 100-C-7 andmore » 100-C-7:1. The pair of excavations appear like pit mines. Mining engineers were hired to design their tiered sides, with safety benches every 17 feet and service ramps which allowed equipment access to the bottom of the excavations. The overall cleanup project was conducted over a span of almost 10 years. A variety of site characterization, excavation, load-out and sampling methodologies were employed at various stages of remediation. Alternative technologies were screened and evaluated during the project. A new method for cost effectively treating soils was implemented - resulting in significant cost savings. Additional opportunities for minimizing waste streams and recycling were identified and effectively implemented by the project team. During the final phase of cleanup the project team applied lessons learned throughout the entire project to address the final, remaining source of chromium contamination. The C-7 cleanup now serves as a model for remediating extensive deep zone contamination sites at Hanford. (authors)« less

  13. Detecting Moving Sources in Astronomical Images (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Block, A.

    2018-06-01

    (Abstract only) Source detection in images is an important part of analyzing astronomical data. This project discusses an implementation of image detection in python, as well as processes for performing photometry in python. Application of these tools to looking for moving sources is also discussed.

  14. Astronomers Without Borders: A Global Astronomy Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, M.

    2011-10-01

    Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) brings together astronomy enthusiasts of all types - amateur astronomers, educators, professionals and "armchair" astronomers for a variety of online and physicalworld programs. The AWB web site provides social networking and a base for online programs that engage people worldwide in astronomy activities that transcend geopolitical and cultural borders. There is universal interest in astronomy, which has been present in all cultures throughout recorded history. Astronomy is also among the most accessible of sciences with the natural laboratory of the sky being available to people worldwide. There are few other interests for which people widely separated geographically can engage in activities involving the same objects. AWB builds on those advantages to bring people together. AWB also provides a platform where projects can reach a global audience. AWB also provides unique opportunities for multidisciplinary collaboration in EPO programs. Several programs including The World at Night, Global Astronomy Month and others will be described along with lessons learned.

  15. ALMA Partners Break Ground on World's Largest Millimeter Wavelength Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2003-11-01

    thinner. Extensive tests showed that the sky above the high-altitude Chajnantor plain in the Atacama Desert has the unsurpassed clarity and stability needed to perform efficient observations with ALMA. ALMA OPERATION ALMA will be the highest altitude, full-time ground-based observatory in the world. Work at this altitude, however, is very challenging. To help ensure the safety of the scientists and engineers at ALMA, operations will be conducted from the Operations Support Facility, a compound located close to the cities of Toconao and San Pedro de Atacama, which is at a more comfortable 2,900 meters (9,500 feet) above sea level. Phase 1 of the ALMA Project, which included the design and development, was completed in 2002. The beginning of Phase 2 of this project happened on February 25, 2003, when the NSF and ESO signed an agreement to construct and operate ALMA. Construction will continue until 2012; however, initial scientific observations are planned in 2007, with a partial array of the first antennas. ALMA's operation will progressively increase until 2012 with the installation of the remaining antennas. The entire project will cost approximately $552 million U.S. (in FY 2000 dollars). Earlier this year, the ALMA Board selected Professor Massimo Tarenghi, formerly manager of ESO's VLT (Very Large Telescope) Project, to become ALMA Director. He is confident that he and his team will succeed. "We may have a lot of hard work in front of us," he said, "but all of us in the team are excited about this unique project. We are ready to work for the international astronomical community and to provide them in due time with a unique instrument allowing trailblazing research projects in many different fields of modern astrophysics." HOW IT WILL WORK ALMA will be composed of 64 high-precision antennas, each 12 meters in diameter. The ALMA antennas can be repositioned, allowing the telescope to function much like the zoom lens on a camera. At its largest, ALMA will be 14

  16. AAS Publishing News: Astronomical Software Citation Workshop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-07-01

    Do you write code for your research? Use astronomical software? Do you wish there were a better way of citing, sharing, archiving, or discovering software for astronomy research? You're not alone! In April 2015, AAS's publishing team joined other leaders in the astronomical software community in a meeting funded by the Sloan Foundation, with the purpose of discussing these issues and potential solutions. In attendance were representatives from academic astronomy, publishing, libraries, for-profit software sharing platforms, telescope facilities, and grantmaking institutions. The goal of the group was to establish “protocols, policies, and platforms for astronomical software citation, sharing, and archiving,” in the hopes of encouraging a set of normalized standards across the field. The AAS is now collaborating with leaders at GitHub to write grant proposals for a project to develop strategies for software discoverability and citation, in astronomy and beyond. If this topic interests you, you can find more details in this document released by the group after the meeting: http://astronomy-software-index.github.io/2015-workshop/ The group hopes to move this project forward with input and support from the broader community. Please share the above document, discuss it on social media using the hashtag #astroware (so that your conversations can be found!), or send private comments to julie.steffen@aas.org.

  17. Sociological profile of astronomers in Spain.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Ussel, J. I.; Trinidad, A.; Ruíz, D.; Battaner, E.; Delgado, A. J.; Rodríguez-Espinosa, J. M.; Salvador-Solé, E.; Torrelles, J. M.

    In this paper the main findings are presented of a recent study made by a team of sociologists from the University of Granada on the professional astronomers currently working in Spain. Despite the peculiarities of this group - its youth, twentyfold increase in size over the last 20 years, and extremely high rate of specialization abroad - in comparison with other Spanish professionals, this is the first time that the sociological characteristics of the group have been studied discretely. The most significant results of the study are presented in the following sections. Section 1 gives a brief historical background of the development of astronomy in Spain. Section 2 analyzes the socio-demographic profile of Spanish astronomy professionals (sex, age, marital status, etc.). Sections 3-5 are devoted to the college education and study programs followed by Spanish astronomers, focusing on the features and evaluations of the training received, and pre- and postdoctoral study trips made to research centers abroad. The results for the latter clearly show the importance that Spanish astronomers place on having experience abroad. Special attention is paid to scientific papers published as a result of joint research projects carried out with colleagues from centers abroad as a result of these study trips. Section 6 describes the situation of astronomy professionals within the Spanish job market, the different positions available and the time taken to find a job after graduation. Section 7 examines astronomy as a discipline in Spain, including the astronomers' own opinions of the social status of the discipline within Spanish society. Particular attention is paid to how Spanish astronomers view the status of astronomy in Spain in comparison with that of other European countries.

  18. Sociological Profile of Astronomers in Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iglesias de Ussel, Julio; Trinidad, Antonio; Ruiz, Diego; Battaner, Eduardo; Delgado, Antonio J.; Rodriguez-Espinosa, José M.; Salvador-Solé, Eduard; Torrelles, José M.

    In this paper the main findings are presented of a recent study made by a team of sociologists from the University of Granada on the professional astronomers currently working in Spain. Despite the peculiarities of this group - its youth, twentyfold increase in size over the last 20 years, and extremely high rate of specialization abroad - in comparison with other Spanish professionals, this is the first time that the sociological characteristics of the group have been studied discretely. The most significant results of the study are presented in the following sections. Section 1 gives a brief historical background of the development of Astronomy in Spain. Section 2 analyzes the socio-demographic profile of Spanish Astronomy professionals (sex, age, marital status, etc.). Sections 3-5 are devoted to the college education and study programs followed by Spanish astronomers, focusing on the features and evaluations of the training received, and pre- and postdoctoral study trips made to research centers abroad. The results for the latter clearly show the importance that Spanish astronomers place on having experience abroad. Special attention is paid to scientific papers published as a result of joint research projects carried out with colleagues from centers abroad as a result of these study trips. Section 6 describes the situation of Astronomy professionals within the Spanish job market, the different positions available and the time taken to find a job after graduation. Section 7 examines Astronomy as a discipline in Spain, including the astronomers' own opinions of the social status of the discipline within Spanish society. Particular attention is paid to how Spanish astronomers view the status of Astronomy in Spain in comparison with that of other European countries.

  19. The War's Positive Impact on the Canadian Astronomical Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Broughton, Peter

    2015-01-01

    At the beginning of WWI, the Canadian astronomical community was tiny and astrophysical research was just beginning. By the end of the war, the country had established the forerunner of its National Research Council and had the world's largest fully operational telescope, thanks to the late entry of the USA into the conflict. By 1918, Canada was on the verge of making significant contributions to science.In spite of the immense loss of life in this pointless war, I am aware of only one casualty affecting Canadian professional astronomers, and that was the indirect death of James Chant, son of University of Toronto's only professor of astronomy. Other Canadian astronomers, including Tom Parker, Bert Topham, and Harry Plaskett were on active service; each of their stories is unique.Among those engaged in scientific work during the war were two Canadians temporarily in England: John McLennan whose helium research for dirigibles led him to establish a cryogenic lab in Toronto where the green line in the spectrum of the aurora was identified in 1925, and Allie Douglas who worked as a statistician in the War Office. Later work with Eddington led her to become his biographer and to her distinction as the first person in Canada to earn a PhD in astronomy (in 1926).

  20. ``Orion, I Don't Love You'': The Astronomical Legacy of Carl Sandburg

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricca, B.

    2013-04-01

    Can poetry provide an accurate means of representing the scientific universe? This paper looks at the astronomical poetry of Carl Sandburg and how the poet employs a scientific framework to deepen his work. Sandburg's method is then compared to a class project of middle school students who use his poetry (and their own) to learn and understand astronomical facts.

  1. Profiling Some of the Lesser-Known Historical Women Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pagnotta, Ashley

    2016-01-01

    Although some historical women astronomers such as Henrietta Swan Leavitt and Cecilia Payne Gaposchkin have recently become somewhat well known among the astronomical community, many others--especially those from non-Western cultures--remain a mystery even to those of us who are actively aware of and interested in the role of early women in astronomy. As part of a project to educate myself on some of these women, I started a blog series (http://ashpags.tumblr.com/tagged/lady-astronomers) to share this newfound knowledge with a population that is on average relatively young, extremely tech savvy, and generally would not consider themselves to be science-inclined. I will discuss some of the more interesting women I have profiled, as well as my observations on the efficacy of this method of history education.

  2. Achievements of the Armenian Astronomy and the Present Activities of the Armenian Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2014-10-01

    A report is given on the achievements of the Armenian astronomy during the last years and on the present activities of the Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS). ArAS membership, ArAS electronic newsletters (ArASNews), ArAS webpage, international collaboration, Armenian Virtual Observatory (ArVO), membership in international organizations, grants, prizes, meetings, summer schools, astronomical Olympiads, other matters related to astronomical education, archaeoastronomy, astronomy outreach and ArAS further projects are discussed.

  3. Astronomical observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponomarev, D. N.

    1983-01-01

    The layout and equipment of astronomical observatories, the oldest scientific institutions of human society are discussed. The example of leading observatories of the USSR allows the reader to familiarize himself with both their modern counterparts, as well as the goals and problems on which astronomers are presently working.

  4. On Tokugawa Bakufu's astronomical officials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Keiji

    2005-06-01

    Tokugawa Bakufu's astronomical office, established in 1684, is the post for calendar reform. The reform was conducted when the calendar did not predict peculiar celestial phenomena, such as solar or lunar eclipses. It was, so to speak, the theme of the ancient astronomy. From removal of the embargo on importing western science books in 1720, Japanese astronomers studied European astronomy and attempted to apply its knowledge to calendar making. Moreover, they knew the Copernican system and also faced several modern astronomical subjects. The French astronomer Lalande's work "ASTRONOMY" exerted particularly strong influence on astronomers. This paper overviews the activities of Paris observatory and French astronomers in the 17th and 18th centuries, and survey what modern astronomical subjects were. Finally, it sketches a role of the Edo observatory played in the Japanese cultural history.

  5. Methods in Astronomical Image Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jörsäter, S.

    A Brief Introductory Note History of Astronomical Imaging Astronomical Image Data Images in Various Formats Digitized Image Data Digital Image Data Philosophy of Astronomical Image Processing Properties of Digital Astronomical Images Human Image Processing Astronomical vs. Computer Science Image Processing Basic Tools of Astronomical Image Processing Display Applications Calibration of Intensity Scales Calibration of Length Scales Image Re-shaping Feature Enhancement Noise Suppression Noise and Error Analysis Image Processing Packages: Design of AIPS and MIDAS AIPS MIDAS Reduction of CCD Data Bias Subtraction Clipping Preflash Subtraction Dark Subtraction Flat Fielding Sky Subtraction Extinction Correction Deconvolution Methods Rebinning/Combining Summary and Prospects for the Future

  6. The Networks and Services of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manning, J. G.; Fraknoi, A.; Gibbs, M. G.; Gurton, S.; Hurst, A.; Berendesen, M.; Deans, P.; White, V.

    2008-11-01

    Founded in 1889, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) is an international organization dedicated to advancing science literacy through engagement in astronomy. Its programs, many with sponsorship from the National Science Foundation, NASA, and astronomical institutions around the world, are particularly designed to assist those who work to improve the public understanding of science. In recent years, the ASP has been expanding the impact of its diverse projects through a variety of networks and services.

  7. Astronomers' Do-It-Yourself Project Opening A New Window on the Universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1999-05-01

    at 74 MHz greatly improves our knowledge of its extent and properties. This is crucial to figuring out how the halo got there in the first place," Kassim said. In the region of the Coma Cluster, the scientists made a "super" wide-field image. This image, showing an area some 15 degrees on a side, shows hundreds of radio-emitting objects, including extremely distant galaxies. Dubbed the "VLA Coma Deep Field," the image is "one of the most spectacular made recently at the VLA," Kassim said. "The amount of information obtained from only a single pointing of the VLA is awesome. Images like this will be extremely valuable in learning about the early universe," he said. All of these results came about because of the astronomers' persistence in pursuing a long-sought goal of equipping the VLA to observe at the new frequency. Erickson has been a long-time proponent of low-frequency radio astronomy. Both Perley and Kassim were Ph.D students of Erickson at the University of Maryland. The 330-MHz capability, also supported by NRL, was added to the VLA in the 1980s, and the group managed to install equipment for 74 MHz on eight of the VLA's 27 antennas a few years ago. They still wanted all the antennas equipped, however. "We knew we could use off-the-shelf components and equip antennas for about a thousand dollars each," said Perley, "but we just couldn't seem to squeeze the loose change out of anyone." Then Kassim pursuaded the Naval Research Laboratory to provide funding for the project. The astronomers then went to work to get the most performance for the money. Erickson, aided by NRL engineer Brian Hicks and Kassim, did the actual construction of 74-MHz receivers at NRL. The astronomers also worked alongside engineers and technicians, climbing on the VLA's giant dish antennas to install the new equipment. Hicks is presently constructing additional 74 MHz receivers at NRL for eventual tests on Very Long Baseline Array antennas The result, Perley said, "is not bad for a do

  8. The Practical Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koester, Jack

    "The Practical Astronomer" by Thomas Dick, LLD, E.C. & J. Biddle, Philadelphia, 1849, is reviewed. Information on telescope makers and astronomers can be found. Mentioned are: Fraunhofer; John Herschel; Lawson; Dollond; Tulley; W. & S. Jones; and S.W. Burnham.

  9. The Rare Book Collection of Capodimonte Astronomical Observatory Will be on the Web: Ancient Science Available to Everyone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cirella, E. O.; Caprio, G.

    2015-04-01

    This paper describes a project for the preservation, promotion, and creation of a website for the rare book collection of Capodimonte Astronomical Observatory. The project, promoted by INAF—Capodimonte Astronomical Observatory, was supported by the Campania Region through European funds. The final component of the project was the publication of a bibliographical catalog, Le Cinquecentine dell'Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, which was addressed to specialized users, including historians of science and bibliophiles.

  10. The Role in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory in the Era of Massive Data Sets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.

    2012-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is realizing global electronic integration of astronomy data. One of the long-term goals of the U.S. VO project, the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO), is development of services and protocols that respond to the growing size and complexity of astronomy data sets. This paper describes how VAO staff are active in such development efforts, especially in innovative strategies and techniques that recognize the limited operating budgets likely available to astronomers even as demand increases. The project has a program of professional outreach whereby new services and protocols are evaluated.

  11. The role in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory in the era of massive data sets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.

    2012-09-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is realizing global electronic integration of astronomy data. One of the long-term goals of the U.S. VO project, the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO), is development of services and protocols that respond to the growing size and complexity of astronomy data sets. This paper describes how VAO staff are active in such development efforts, especially in innovative strategies and techniques that recognize the limited operating budgets likely available to astronomers even as demand increases. The project has a program of professional outreach whereby new services and protocols are evaluated.

  12. Managing distributed software development in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Janet D.; Plante, Raymond L.; Boneventura, Nina; Busko, Ivo; Cresitello-Dittmar, Mark; D'Abrusco, Raffaele; Doe, Stephen; Ebert, Rick; Laurino, Omar; Pevunova, Olga; Refsdal, Brian; Thomas, Brian

    2012-09-01

    The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is a product-driven organization that provides new scientific research capabilities to the astronomical community. Software development for the VAO follows a lightweight framework that guides development of science applications and infrastructure. Challenges to be overcome include distributed development teams, part-time efforts, and highly constrained schedules. We describe the process we followed to conquer these challenges while developing Iris, the VAO application for analysis of 1-D astronomical spectral energy distributions (SEDs). Iris was successfully built and released in less than a year with a team distributed across four institutions. The project followed existing International Virtual Observatory Alliance inter-operability standards for spectral data and contributed a SED library as a by-product of the project. We emphasize lessons learned that will be folded into future development efforts. In our experience, a well-defined process that provides guidelines to ensure the project is cohesive and stays on track is key to success. Internal product deliveries with a planned test and feedback loop are critical. Release candidates are measured against use cases established early in the process, and provide the opportunity to assess priorities and make course corrections during development. Also key is the participation of a stakeholder such as a lead scientist who manages the technical questions, advises on priorities, and is actively involved as a lead tester. Finally, frequent scheduled communications (for example a bi-weekly tele-conference) assure issues are resolved quickly and the team is working toward a common vision.

  13. Astronomical Video Suites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Francisco Salgado, Jose

    2010-01-01

    Astronomer and visual artist Jose Francisco Salgado has directed two astronomical video suites to accompany live performances of classical music works. The suites feature awe-inspiring images, historical illustrations, and visualizations produced by NASA, ESA, and the Adler Planetarium. By the end of 2009, his video suites Gustav Holst's The Planets and Astronomical Pictures at an Exhibition will have been presented more than 40 times in over 10 countries. Lately Salgado, an avid photographer, has been experimenting with high dynamic range imaging, time-lapse, infrared, and fisheye photography, as well as with stereoscopic photography and video to enhance his multimedia works.

  14. US Gateway to SIMBAD Astronomical Database

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eichhorn, G.; Oliversen, R. (Technical Monitor)

    1999-01-01

    During the last year the US SIMBAD Gateway Project continued to provide services like user registration to the US users of the SIMBAD database in France. Currently there are over 3400 US users registered. We also provide user support by answering questions from users and handling requests for lost passwords when still necessary. We have implemented in cooperation with the CDS SIMBAD project access to the SIMBAD database for US users on an Internet address basis. This allows most US users to access SIMBAD without having to enter passwords. We have maintained the mirror copy of the SIMBAD database on a server at SAO. This has allowed much faster access for the US users. We also supported a demonstration of the SIMBAD database at the meeting of the American Astronomical Society in January. We shipped computer equipment to the meeting and provided support for the demonstration activities at the SIMBAD booth. We continued to improve the cross-linking between the SIMBAD project and the Astrophysics Data System. This cross-linking between these systems is very much appreciated by the users of both the SIMBAD database and the ADS Abstract Service. The mirror of the SIMBAD database at SAO makes this connection faster for the US astronomers. We exchange information between the ADS and SIMBAD on a daily basis. The close cooperation between the CDS in Strasbourg and SAO, facilitated by this project, is an important part of the astronomy-wide digital library initiative called Urania. It has proven to be a model in how different data centers can collaborate and enhance the value of their products by linking with other data centers.

  15. The First School for Young Astronomers Organized by ESO and the Astronomical Council of the USSR Acadeny of Sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Odorico, S.

    1987-12-01

    The first international school for young astronomers organized jointly by ESO and the Astronomical Council of the USSR Academy of Sciences took place from the 22nd to the 29th of September at the Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory of the Academy of Sciences of Armenia and was dedicated to "Observations with Large Telescopes". It was appropriately closed with a oneday visit to the Special Astrophysical Observatory at Zelenchukskaja, in northern Caucasus, home of the 6-m telescope, the largest in the world. The lecturers came from ESO and from the Soviet Union; the 45 participants were from ESO member states, from Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, the German Democratic Republic, Poland, Spain and the USSR. After the welcome addresses by Academician V.A. Ambartsumian and by E. Ye Khachikian, Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee, the school was opened by M. Tarenghi of ESO who spoke on the characteristics of existing ESO telescopes and on the innovative features of the ESO 3.5-m New Technology Telescope, to be erected at La Silla next year. H. A. Abrahamian and J.A. Stepanian of the Byurakan Observatory presented the Byurakan 2.6-m telescope and the 1-m Schmidt respectively, illustrating the scientific programmes carried out in the recent past and presently at these two facilities.

  16. US Astronomers Access to SIMBAD in Strasbourg, France

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eichhorn, G.; Oliverson, Ronald J. (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    During the last year the US SIMBAD Gateway Project continued to provide services like user registration to the US users of the SIMBAD database in France. Currently there are over 4300 US users registered. We also provided user support by answering questions from users and handling requests for lost passwords when still necessary. Even though almost all users now access SIMBAD without a password, based on hostnames/IP addresses, there are still some users that need individual passwords. We continued to maintain the mirror copy of the SIMBAD database on a server at SAO. This allows much faster access for the US users. During the past year we moved this mirror to a faster server to improve access for the US users. We again supported a demonstration of the SIMBAD database at the meeting of the American Astronomical Society in January. We provided support for the demonstration activities at the SIMBAD booth. We paid part of the fee for the SIMBAD demonstration. We continued to improve the cross-linking between the SIMBAD project and the Astrophysics Data System. This cross-linking between these systems is very much appreciated by the users of both the SIMBAD database and the ADS Abstract Service. The mirror of the SIMBAD database at SAO makes this connection faster for the US astronomers. We exchange information between the ADS and SIMBAD on a daily basis. The close cooperation between the CDS in Strasbourg and SAO, facilitated by this project, is an important part of the astronomy-wide digital library initiative. It has proven to be a model in how different data centers can collaborate and enhance the value of their products by linking with other data centers. We continue this collaboration in order to provide better services to both the US and European astronomical community. This collaboration is even more important in light of the developments for the Virtual Observatory projects in the different countries.

  17. FITSManager: Management of Personal Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Chenzhou; Fan, Dongwei; Zhao, Yongheng; Kembhavi, Ajit; He, Boliang; Cao, Zihuang; Li, Jian; Nandrekar, Deoyani

    2011-07-01

    With the increase of personal storage capacity, it is easy to find hundreds to thousands of FITS files in the personal computer of an astrophysicist. Because Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) is a professional data format initiated by astronomers and used mainly in the small community, data management toolkits for FITS files are very few. Astronomers need a powerful tool to help them manage their local astronomical data. Although Virtual Observatory (VO) is a network oriented astronomical research environment, its applications and related technologies provide useful solutions to enhance the management and utilization of astronomical data hosted in an astronomer's personal computer. FITSManager is such a tool to provide astronomers an efficient management and utilization of their local data, bringing VO to astronomers in a seamless and transparent way. FITSManager provides fruitful functions for FITS file management, like thumbnail, preview, type dependent icons, header keyword indexing and search, collaborated working with other tools and online services, and so on. The development of the FITSManager is an effort to fill the gap between management and analysis of astronomical data.

  18. Tribute to an Astronomer: The Work of Max Ernst on Wilhelm Tempel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nazé, Yaël

    2016-05-01

    In 1964-1974, the German artist Max Ernst created, with the help of two friends, a series of works (books, movie, and paintings) related to the astronomer Wilhelm Tempel. Mixing actual texts by Tempel and artistic features, this series pays homage to the astronomer by recalling his life and discoveries. Moreover, the core of the project, the book Maximiliana or the Illegal Practice of Astronomy, actually depicts the way science works, making this work of art a most original tribute to a scientist.

  19. Reconstructing color images of astronomical objects using black and white spectroscopic emulsions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dufour, R. I.; Martins, D. H.

    1976-01-01

    A color photograph of the peculiar elliptical galaxy NGC 5128 (Centaurus A) has been reconstructed from three Kodak 103a emulsion type photographs by projecting positives of the three B&W plates through appropriate filters onto a conventional color film. The resulting photograph shows color balance and latitude characteristics superior to color photographs of similar astronomical objects made with commercially available conventional color film. Similar results have been obtained for color reconstructed photographs of the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. These and other results suggest that these projection-reconstruction techniques can be used to obtain high-quality color photographs of astronomical objects which overcome many of the problems associated with the use of conventional color film for the long exposures required in astronomy.

  20. A Workshop on High Energy Astrophysical for Amateur Astronomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fishman, Gerald J.; Mattei, J. A.; Rose, M. Franklin (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Amateur astronomers are, in general, an enthusiastic and dynamic group of individuals who can help greatly in astronomy public outreach and education programs. In the U.S., they outnumber professional astronomers by over a factor of ten. Over eighty amateur astronomers from all over the U.S. and abroad attended a unique workshop in Huntsville, Alabama in April of this year. Most attendees were provided with travel grants under the condition that they disseminate knowledge gained at the workshop to civic groups, astronomy clubs and science teacher groups in their home communities. Twelve lecturers were given over two days, primarily by active high-energy researchers from NASA-MSFC and NASA-GSFC. Funding for the workshop was provided by a variety of NASA-sponsored projects, offices within OSS and private funding sources. The workshop attendees were selected by the AAVSO, which also administered the funding for the workshop. This high-leverage educational and public outreach program was deemed to be highly successful and bodes well for similar, future workshops. Many of the participants have already begun to give public talks on HEA and GRBs.

  1. Recent Activity at the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, M.; Barker, T.

    2011-01-01

    The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) located at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) was established in November 2007. APDA is dedicated to the task of collecting, restoring, preserving and storing astronomical photographic data. APDA is also tasked with scanning each image and establishing a database of images that can be accessed via the Internet by the global community of scientists, researchers and students. APDA is a new type of astronomical observatory - one that harnesses analog data of the night sky taken for more than a century and making that data digitally available. APDA is housed in a newly renovated Research Building on the PARI campus. An award from the NSF allowed renovation of the heating and air conditioning. Plates in APDA are kept in a 20 C +/- 1 C area with humidity at 38% +/- 3%. Renovation of the electrical system with backup power allows for support of a data center with a networked storage system and software donated from EMC Corp. The storage system can hold more than 300 terabytes of research data which can be accessed through multiple gigabyte connectivity to the Internet. APDA has a collection of more than 100,000 photographic plates and film collections, as well as major instrumentation, from NASA, the STScI, the US Naval Observatory, the Harvard Smithsonian CfA and others. APDA possesses two high precision glass plate scanners, GAMMA I and GAMMA II, that were built for NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). The scanners were used to develop the HST Guide Star Catalog and Digitized Sky Survey. We will present the status of GAMMA II and the recent donations of astronomical plates and current research projects.

  2. Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harutyunian, H. A.; Mickaelian, A. M.; Parsamian, E. S.

    2014-10-01

    The book contains Proceedings of the Archaeoastronomical Meeting "Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture" Dedicated to Anania Shirakatsi's 1400th Anniversary and XI Annual Meeting of the Armenian Astronomical Society. It consists of 3 main sections: "Astronomical Heritage", "Anania Shirakatsi" and "Modern Astronomy", as well as Literature about Anania Shirakatsi is included. The book may be interesting for astronomers, historians, archaeologists, linguists, students and other readers.

  3. UkrVO astronomical WEB services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazhaev, A.

    2017-02-01

    Ukraine Virtual Observatory (UkrVO) has been a member of the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) since 2011. The virtual observatory (VO) is not a magic solution to all problems of data storing and processing, but it provides certain standards for building infrastructure of astronomical data center. The astronomical databases help data mining and offer to users an easy access to observation metadata, images within celestial sphere and results of image processing. The astronomical web services (AWS) of UkrVO give to users handy tools for data selection from large astronomical catalogues for a relatively small region of interest in the sky. Examples of the AWS usage are showed.

  4. Astronomical Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neuenschwander, D. E.; Finkenbinder, L. R.

    2004-05-01

    Just as quetzals and jaguars require specific ecological habitats to survive, so too must planets occupy a tightly constrained astronomical habitat to support life as we know it. With this theme in mind we relate the transferable features of our elementary astronomy course, "The Astronomical Basis of Life on Earth." Over the last five years, in a team-taught course that features a spring break field trip to Costa Rica, we have introduced astronomy through "astronomical ecosystems," emphasizing astronomical constraints on the prospects for life on Earth. Life requires energy, chemical elements, and long timescales, and we emphasize how cosmological, astrophysical, and geological realities, through stabilities and catastrophes, create and eliminate niches for biological life. The linkage between astronomy and biology gets immediate and personal: for example, studies in solar energy production are followed by hikes in the forest to examine the light-gathering strategies of photosynthetic organisms; a lesson on tides is conducted while standing up to our necks in one on a Pacific beach. Further linkages between astronomy and the human timescale concerns of biological diversity, cultural diversity, and environmental sustainability are natural and direct. Our experience of teaching "astronomy as habitat" strongly influences our "Astronomy 101" course in Oklahoma as well. This "inverted astrobiology" seems to transform our student's outlook, from the universe being something "out there" into something "we're in!" We thank the SNU Science Alumni support group "The Catalysts," and the SNU Quetzal Education and Research Center, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica, for their support.

  5. Preserving Astronomy's Photographic Legacy: Current State and the Future of North American Astronomical Plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osborn, W.; Robbins, L.

    2009-08-01

    This book contains articles on preserving astronomy's valuable heritage of photographic observations, most of which are on glass plates. It is intended to serve as a reference for institutions charged with preserving and managing plate archives and astronomers interested in using archival photographic plates in their research. The first portion of the book focuses on previous activities and recommendations related to plate archiving. These include actions taken by the International Astronomical Union, activities in Europe and a detailed account of a workshop on preserving astronomical photographic data held in 2007 at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute, North Carolina. The workshop discussions covered a wide range of issues that must be considered in any effort to archive plates and culminated in a set of recommendations on preserving, cataloging and making publicly available these irreplaceable data. The second part of the book reports on some recent efforts to implement the recommendations. These include essays on the recently established Astronomical Photographic Data Archive, projects to make photographic collections available electronically, evaluations of commercial scanners for digitization of astronomical plates and the case for the continuing value of these data along with a report on the census of astronomical plate collections in North America carried out in 2008. The census cataloged the locations, numbers, and types of astronomical plates in the US and Canada. Comprehensive appendices identify all the significant collections in North America and detail the current contents, state and status of their holdings.

  6. "She is an astronomer" in Spain; the International Year of Astronomy 2009 and beyond

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Márquez, I.

    2011-11-01

    The work of the Spanish node for the IYA2009 Cornerstoneproject, "She is an Astronomer" is presented. Our team developedseveral projects with the common goal of promoting gender equality andwomen participation in professional and amateur astronomy, andsupporting the training of young women researchers andtechnologists. The main ones were: 1)Calendar "Women astronomerswho made history". We highlighted exceptional women, fromdifferent epochs and countries, whose contributions to theadvancement of science deserve to transcend anonymity and occupy aplace in history.2) "Women in the stars" was a series of 8 TV programsdevoted to the contribution of Spanish women astronomers, made incollaboration with the UNED.3) "Women in Spanish Astronomy: analysis of a peculiar situation: A universe to discover", was the first sociological study of this type, including quantitative and qualitative (individual and group interviews) analyses. 4) The exhibit "She Astronomer", was aimed at teaching astronomy from a new perspective: the relevant contributions by women astronomers from different times and places.The main aims of the "Commission for Women and Astronomy",recently created within the Spanish Astronomical Society (SEA), are alsodescribed.

  7. An astronomical observatory for Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    del Mar, Juan Quintanilla; Sicardy, Bruno; Giraldo, Víctor Ayma; Callo, Víctor Raúl Aguilar

    2011-06-01

    Peru and France are to conclude an agreement to provide Peru with an astronomical observatory equipped with a 60-cm diameter telescope. The principal aims of this project are to establish and develop research and teaching in astronomy. Since 2004, a team of researchers from Paris Observatory has been working with the University of Cusco (UNSAAC) on the educational, technical and financial aspects of implementing this venture. During an international astronomy conference in Cusco in July 2009, the foundation stone of the future Peruvian Observatory was laid at the top of Pachatusan Mountain. UNSAAC, represented by its Rector, together with the town of Oropesa and the Cusco regional authority, undertook to make the sum of 300,000€ available to the project. An agreement between Paris Observatory and UNSAAC now enables Peruvian students to study astronomy through online teaching.

  8. Accelerating the Rate of Astronomical Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, Ray P. Ruggles, Clive L. N.

    2010-05-01

    Special Session 5 on Accelerating the Rate of Astronomical Discovery addressed a range of potential limits to progress - paradigmatic, technological, organisational, and political - examining each issue both from modern and historical perspectives, and drawing lessons to guide future progress. A number of issues were identified which potentially regulate the flow of discoveries, such as the balance between large strongly-focussed projects and instruments, designed to answer the most fundamental questions confronting us, and the need to maintain a creative environment with room for unorthodox thinkers and bold, high risk, projects. Also important is the need to maintain historical and cultural perspectives, and the need to engage the minds of the most brilliant young people on the planet, regardless of their background, ethnicity, gender, or geography.

  9. Using Modern Technologies to Capture and Share Indigenous Astronomical Knowledge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakata, Martin; Hamacher, Duane W.; Warren, John; Byrne, Alex; Pagnucco, Maurice; Harley, Ross; Venugopal, Srikumar; Thorpe, Kirsten; Neville, Richard; Bolt, Reuben

    2014-06-01

    Indigenous Knowledge is important for Indigenous communities across the globe and for the advancement of our general scientific knowledge. In particular, Indigenous astronomical knowledge integrates many aspects of Indigenous Knowledge, including seasonal calendars, navigation, food economics, law, ceremony, and social structure. Capturing, managing, and disseminating this knowledge in the digital environment poses a number of challenges, which we aim to address using a collaborative project emerging between experts in the higher education, library, archive and industry sectors. Using Microsoft's WorldWide Telescope and Rich Interactive Narratives technologies, we propose to develop software, media design, and archival management solutions to allow Indigenous communities to share their astronomical knowledge with the world on their terms and in a culturally sensitive manner.

  10. Astronomical Software Directory Service

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hanisch, R. J.; Payne, H.; Hayes, J.

    1998-01-01

    This is the final report on the development of the Astronomical Software Directory Service (ASDS), a distributable, searchable, WWW-based database of software packages and their related documentation. ASDS provides integrated access to 56 astronomical software packages, with more than 16,000 URL's indexed for full-text searching.

  11. New Life for Astronomical Instruments of the Past at the Astronomical Observatory of Taras Shevchenko

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantseva, Liliya

    2012-09-01

    Astronomical instruments of the past are certainly valuable artifacts of the history of science and education. Like other collections of scientific equipment, they also demonstrate i) development of scientific and technical ideas, ii) technological features of the historical period, iii) professional features of artists or companies -- manufacturers, and iv) national and local specificity of production. However, astronomical instruments are also devices made for observations of rare phenomena -- solar eclipses, transits of planets of the solar disk, etc. Instruments used to study these rare events were very different for each event, since the science changed quickly between events. The Astronomical Observatory of Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University has a collection of tools made by leading European and local shops from the early nineteenth century. These include tools for optically observing the first artificial Earth satellites, photography, chronometry, and meteorology. In addition, it has assembled a library of descriptions of astronomical instruments and makers'price-lists. Of particular interest are the large stationary tools that are still active in their pavilions. Almost every instrument has a long interesting history. Museification of astronomical instruments gives them a second life, expanding educational programs and tracing the development of astronomy in general and scientific institution and region in particular. It would be advisable to first create a regional database of these rare astronomical instruments (which is already being done in Ukraine), then a common global database. By combining all the historical information about astronomical instruments with the advantages of the Internet, you can show the full evolution of an astronomical instrument with all its features. Time is relentless, and much is destroyed, badly kept and thrown in the garbage. We need time to protect, capture, and tell about it.

  12. The Amateur Astronomer's Introduction to the Celestial Sphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Millar, William

    2005-12-01

    This introduction to the night sky is for amateur astronomers who desire a deeper understanding of the principles and observations of naked-eye astronomy. It covers topics such as terrestrial and astronomical coordinate systems, stars and constellations, the relative motions of the sky, sun, moon and earth leading to an understanding of the seasons, phases of the moon, and eclipses. Topics are discussed and compared for observers located in both the northern and southern hemispheres. Written in a conversational style, only addition and subtraction are needed to understand the basic principles and a more advanced mathematical treatment is available in the appendices. Each chapter contains a set of review questions and simple exercises to reinforce the reader's understanding of the material. The last chapter is a set of self-contained observation projects to get readers started with making observations about the concepts they have learned. William Charles Millar, currently Professor of Astronomy at Grand Rapids Community College in Michigan, has been teaching the subject for almost twenty years and is very involved with local amateur astronomy groups. Millar also belongs to The Planetary Society and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific and has traveled to Europe and South America to observe solar eclipses. Millar holds a Masters degree in Physics from Western Michigan University.

  13. Astronomers Find World with Thick, Inhospitable Atmosphere and an Icy Heart

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-12-01

    , USA). ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory, and VISTA, the world's largest survey telescope. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  14. What Lies Behind NSF Astronomer Demographics? Subjectivities of Women, Minorities and Foreign-born Astronomers within Meshworks of Big Science Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guillen, Reynal; Gu, D.; Holbrook, J.; Murillo, L. F.; Traweek, S.

    2011-01-01

    Our current research focuses on the trajectory of scientists working with large-scale databases in astronomy, following them as they strategically build their careers, digital infrastructures, and make their epistemological commitments. We look specifically at how gender, ethnicity, nationality intersect in the process of subject formation in astronomy, as well as in the process of enrolling partners for the construction of instruments, design and implementation of large-scale databases. Work once figured as merely technical support, such assembling data catalogs, or as graphic design, generating pleasing images for public support, has been repositioned at the core of the field. Some have argued that such databases enable a new kind of scientific inquiry based on data exploration, such as the "fourth paradigm" or "data-driven" science. Our preliminary findings based on oral history interviews and ethnography provide insights into meshworks of women, African-American, "Hispanic," Asian-American and foreign-born astronomers. Our preliminary data suggest African-American men are more successful in sustaining astronomy careers than Chicano and Asian-American men. A distinctive theme in our data is the glocal character of meshworks available to and created by foreign-born women astronomers working at US facilities. Other data show that the proportion of Asian to Asian American and foreign-born Latina/o to Chicana/o astronomers is approximately equal. Futhermore, Asians and Latinas/os are represented in significantly greater numbers than Asian Americans and Chicanas/os. Among professional astronomers in the US, each ethnic minority group is numbered on the order of tens, not hundreds. Project support is provided by the NSF EAGER program to University of California, Los Angeles under award 0956589.

  15. Research on schedulers for astronomical observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colome, Josep; Colomer, Pau; Guàrdia, Josep; Ribas, Ignasi; Campreciós, Jordi; Coiffard, Thierry; Gesa, Lluis; Martínez, Francesc; Rodler, Florian

    2012-09-01

    The main task of a scheduler applied to astronomical observatories is the time optimization of the facility and the maximization of the scientific return. Scheduling of astronomical observations is an example of the classical task allocation problem known as the job-shop problem (JSP), where N ideal tasks are assigned to M identical resources, while minimizing the total execution time. A problem of higher complexity, called the Flexible-JSP (FJSP), arises when the tasks can be executed by different resources, i.e. by different telescopes, and it focuses on determining a routing policy (i.e., which machine to assign for each operation) other than the traditional scheduling decisions (i.e., to determine the starting time of each operation). In most cases there is no single best approach to solve the planning system and, therefore, various mathematical algorithms (Genetic Algorithms, Ant Colony Optimization algorithms, Multi-Objective Evolutionary algorithms, etc.) are usually considered to adapt the application to the system configuration and task execution constraints. The scheduling time-cycle is also an important ingredient to determine the best approach. A shortterm scheduler, for instance, has to find a good solution with the minimum computation time, providing the system with the capability to adapt the selected task to varying execution constraints (i.e., environment conditions). We present in this contribution an analysis of the task allocation problem and the solutions currently in use at different astronomical facilities. We also describe the schedulers for three different projects (CTA, CARMENES and TJO) where the conclusions of this analysis are applied to develop a suitable routine.

  16. Astronomical Instrumentation System Markup Language

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldbaum, Jesse M.

    2016-05-01

    The Astronomical Instrumentation System Markup Language (AISML) is an Extensible Markup Language (XML) based file format for maintaining and exchanging information about astronomical instrumentation. The factors behind the need for an AISML are first discussed followed by the reasons why XML was chosen as the format. Next it's shown how XML also provides the framework for a more precise definition of an astronomical instrument and how these instruments can be combined to form an Astronomical Instrumentation System (AIS). AISML files for several instruments as well as one for a sample AIS are provided. The files demonstrate how AISML can be utilized for various tasks from web page generation and programming interface to instrument maintenance and quality management. The advantages of widespread adoption of AISML are discussed.

  17. Instrument Remote Control via the Astronomical Instrument Markup Language

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sall, Ken; Ames, Troy; Warsaw, Craig; Koons, Lisa; Shafer, Richard

    1998-01-01

    The Instrument Remote Control (IRC) project ongoing at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's (GSFC) Information Systems Center (ISC) supports NASA's mission by defining an adaptive intranet-based framework that provides robust interactive and distributed control and monitoring of remote instruments. An astronomical IRC architecture that combines the platform-independent processing capabilities of Java with the power of Extensible Markup Language (XML) to express hierarchical data in an equally platform-independent, as well as human readable manner, has been developed. This architecture is implemented using a variety of XML support tools and Application Programming Interfaces (API) written in Java. IRC will enable trusted astronomers from around the world to easily access infrared instruments (e.g., telescopes, cameras, and spectrometers) located in remote, inhospitable environments, such as the South Pole, a high Chilean mountaintop, or an airborne observatory aboard a Boeing 747. Using IRC's frameworks, an astronomer or other scientist can easily define the type of onboard instrument, control the instrument remotely, and return monitoring data all through the intranet. The Astronomical Instrument Markup Language (AIML) is the first implementation of the more general Instrument Markup Language (IML). The key aspects of our approach to instrument description and control applies to many domains, from medical instruments to machine assembly lines. The concepts behind AIML apply equally well to the description and control of instruments in general. IRC enables us to apply our techniques to several instruments, preferably from different observatories.

  18. Astronomical photography. Part A: Gum nebula, galactic cluster, and zodiacal light photography

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mercer, R. D.; Dunkelman, L.; Mattingly, T. K.

    1972-01-01

    It is reported that the Apollo 16 command module astronomical photography was performed with the specific objective of capitalizing on the uniqueness of the double umbra as a vantage point to collect astronomical data that are obtainable only near our Moon. For this reason, these data will be compared directly to analogous photography performed from Earth orbit during Project Mercury and the Gemini Program as well as to the Apollo-duplicated photography taken from sites on the Earth surface. Comparison with Earth-based photography should yield direct information on the Earth airglow layer and on atmospheric scattering and extinction.

  19. The League of Astronomers: Outreach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paat, Anthony; Brandel, A.; Schmitz, D.; Sharma, R.; Thomas, N. H.; Trujillo, J.; Laws, C. S.; Astronomers, League of

    2014-01-01

    The University of Washington League of Astronomers (LOA) is an organization comprised of University of Washington (UW) undergraduate students. Our main goal is to share our interest in astronomy with the UW community and with the general public. The LOA hosts star parties on the UW campus and collaborates with the Seattle Astronomical Society (SAS) on larger Seattle-area star parties. At the star parties, we strive to teach our local community about what they can view in our night sky. LOA members share knowledge of how to locate constellations and use a star wheel. The relationship the LOA has with members of SAS increases both the number of events and people we are able to reach. Since the cloudy skies of the Northwest prevent winter star parties, we therefore focus our outreach on the UW Mobile Planetarium, an inflatable dome system utilizing Microsoft’s WorldWide Telescope (WWT) software. The mobile planetarium brings astronomy into the classrooms of schools unable to travel to the UW on-campus planetarium. Members of the LOA volunteer their time towards this project and we make up the majority of the Mobile Planetarium volunteers. Our outreach efforts allow us to connect with the community and enhance our own knowledge of astronomy.

  20. Astronomical catalog desk reference, 1994 edition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    The Astronomical Catalog Desk Reference is designed to aid astronomers in locating machine readable catalogs in the Astronomical Data Center (ADC) archives. The key reference components of this document are as follows: A listing of shortened titles for all catalogs available from the ADC (includes the name of the lead author and year of publication), brief descriptions of over 300 astronomical catalogs, an index of ADC catalog numbers by subject keyword, and an index of ADC catalog numbers by author. The heart of this document is the set of brief descriptions generated by the ADC staff. The 1994 edition of the Astronomical Catalog Desk Reference contains descriptions for over one third of the catalogs in the ADC archives. Readers are encouraged to refer to this section for concise summaries of those catalogs and their contents.

  1. The Astronomy Genealogy Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenn, Joseph S.

    2014-01-01

    The Astronomy Genealogy Project, to be known as AstroGen, will list as many as possible of the world's astronomers with their academic parents (aka thesis advisors) and enable the reader to trace both academic ancestors and descendants. It will be very similar to the highly successful Mathematics Genealogy Project (MGP), available at http://genealogy.math.ndsu.nodak.edu. The MGP, which has been in operation since 1996, now contains the names of about 170,000 "mathematicians." These include many physicists and astronomers, as well as practitioners of related sciences. Mitchel Keller, the director of the MGP, has generously shared the software used in that project, and the American Astronomical Society (AAS) will host AstroGen, a project of the Historical Astronomy Division, on its website. We expect to start seeking entries soon, depending on the availability of computational assistance from the AAS IT department. We are seeking volunteers to help run the project. If you are interested, please contact me at joe.tenn@sonoma.edu.

  2. Final Status Survey for the Largest Decommissioning Project on Earth

    SciTech Connect

    Dubiel, R.W.; Miller, J.; Quayle, D.

    2006-07-01

    To assist the United States Department of Energy's (US DOE's) re-industrialization efforts at its gaseous diffusion site in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, known as the East Tennessee Technology Park (ETTP), the US DOE awarded a 6-year Decontamination and Decommissioning (D and D) contract to BNG America (formerly BNFL Inc.) in 1997. The ETTP 3-Building D and D Project included the removal and disposition of the materials and equipment from the K-33, K-31, and K-29 Gaseous Diffusion Plant buildings. The three buildings comprise more than 4.8 million square feet (446,000 square meters) of floor surface area and more than 350 million poundsmore » (148 million kilograms) of hazardous and radioactively contaminated material, making it the largest nuclear D and D project in progress anywhere in the world. The logistical hurdles involved in a project of this scope and magnitude required an extensive amount of Engineering and Health Physics professionals. In order to accomplish the Final Status Survey (FSS) for a project of this scope, the speed and efficiency of automated survey equipment was essential. Surveys of floors, structural steel and ceilings up to 60 feet (18 meters) were required. The FSS had to be expanded to include additional remediation and surveys due to characterization surveys and assumptions regarding the nature and extent of contamination provided by the US DOE. Survey design and technical bases had to consider highly variable constituents; including uranium from depleted to low enrichment, variable levels of Technetium-99 and transuranic nuclides, which were introduced into the cascade during the 1960's when recycled uranium (RU) from Savannah River was re-enriched at the facility. The RU was transported to unexpected locations from leaks in the cascade by complex building ventilation patterns. The primary survey tool used for the post remediation and FSS was the Surface Contamination Monitor (SCM) and the associated Survey Information Management System

  3. Computer version of astronomical ephemerides.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choliy, V. Ya.

    A computer version of astronomical ephemerides for bodies of the Solar System, stars, and astronomical phenomena was created at the Main Astronomical Observatory of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine and the Astronomy and Cosmic Physics Department of the Taras Shevchenko National University. The ephemerides will be distributed via INTERNET or in the file form. This information is accessible via the web servers space.ups.kiev.ua and alfven.ups.kiev.ua or the address choliy@astrophys.ups.kiev.ua.

  4. The Selection and Protection of Optical Astronomical Observing Sites in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wenjing, Jin; Bai, Jinming; Yao, Yongqiang

    2015-03-01

    Before 1950 there are two observatories, Shanghai and Purple Mountain Astronomical Observatories (SHAO and PMO), and two observing stations, Qingdao and Kunming stations in China. With the requirements of astronomical research, two observatories, Beijing and Shaanxi Astronomical Observatories (BAO and SXAO) and two artificial satellite stations, Urumqi and Changchun, were established about 1960. Based on the current management, now there are 4 observatories, SHAO, PMO, NAOC(National Astronomical Observatories), which was grouped from BAO, YNAO and 2 others, as well as XAO (Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory). The optical 1-2 m class telescopes are being operated at former four observatories. SXAO is changed as National Time Service Center. Because of city expansion as well as the traveling and economic developments, these observatories are suffered severe light pollution. For example, Zo Ce is located at the suburb of Shanghai city. A 40 cm double astrograph was installed in 1900 and a 1.56 m optical reflector have been operated since November 1987. In 1994 the seeing is better than 1 and the night sky brightness in V is about 19 mag/arcsec 2, stars fainter than 20 mag with CCD are visibles. In 2007 a large playground was built in Zô Cè area. The light pollution is severe gradually. The night sky brightness has been increased to 15.8 mag/arcsec 2. The other observatories have similar situation. New site surveys and found new stations to solve the problem. Except the solar and radio stations of each Astronomical Observatory, now there are 3 optical observing sites at PMO (Hong-He, Xu-Yi and Yaoan), 2 at SHAO (Zô Cè and Tian Huang Ping) and 2 at YNAO (Kunming and Gao-Mei-Gu) as well as 1 optical observing site at BAO (Xing-Long). The best observing site is Gao-Mei-Gu, which is selected as the optical observing site of YNAO and where atmospheric turbulence distribution is 0.11 near ground with heights from 6.5m to 2.7m during night. Sky brightness in B and V band

  5. Integrated optics applied to astronomical aperture synthesis III: simulation of components optimized for astronomical interferometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nabias, Laurent; Schanen, Isabelle; Berger, Jean-Philippe; Kern, Pierre; Malbet, Fabien; Benech, Pierre

    2018-04-01

    This paper, "Integrated optics applied to astronomical aperture synthesis III: simulation of components optimized for astronomical interferometry," was presented as part of International Conference on Space Optics—ICSO 1997, held in Toulouse, France.

  6. Polishers around the globe: an overview on the market of large astronomical mirrors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Döhring, Thorsten

    2014-07-01

    Astronomical mirrors are key elements in modern optical telescopes, their dimensions are usually large and their specifications are demanding. Only a limited number of skilled companies respectively institutions around the world are able to master the challenge to polish an individual astronomical mirror, especially in dimensions above one meter. This paper presents an overview on the corresponding market including a listing of polishers around the globe. Therefore valuable information is provided to the astronomical community: Polishers may use the information as a global competitor database, astronomers and project managers may get more transparency on potential suppliers, and suppliers of polishing equipment may learn about unknown potential customers in other parts of the world. An evaluation of the historical market demand on large monolithic astronomical mirrors is presented. It concluded that this is still a niche market with a typical mean rate of 1-2 mirrors per year. Polishing of such mirrors is an enabling technology with impact on the development of technical know-how, public relation, visibility and reputation of the supplier. Within a corresponding technical discussion different polishing technologies are described. In addition it is demonstrated that strategic aspects and political considerations are influencing the selection of the optical finisher.

  7. Amateur Astronomers: Secret Agents of EPO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berendsen, M.; White, V.; Devore, E.; Reynolds, M.

    2008-06-01

    Amateur astronomers prime the public to be more interested, receptive, and excited about space science, missions, and programs. Through recent research and targeted programs, amateur astronomy outreach is being increasingly recognized by professional astronomers, educators, and other amateurs as a valued and important service. The Night Sky Network program, administered by the ASP, is the first nationwide research-based program specifically targeted to support outreach by amateur astronomers. This Network of trained and informed amateur astronomers can provide a stimulating introduction to your EPO programs as Network members share the night sky with families, students, and youth groups.

  8. Astronomical Research with the MicroObservatory Net

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brecher, K.; Sadler, P.; Gould, R.; Leiker, S.; Antonucci, P.; Deutsch, F.

    1997-05-01

    We have developed a fully integrated automated astronomical telescope system which combines the imaging power of a cooled CCD, with a self-contained and weatherized 15 cm reflecting optical telescope and mount. The MicroObservatory Net consists of five of these telescopes. They are currently being deployed around the world at widely distributed longitudes. Remote access to the MicroObservatories over the Internet has now been implemented. Software for computer control, pointing, focusing, filter selection as well as pattern recognition have all been developed as part of the project. The telescopes can be controlled in real time or in delay mode, from a Macintosh, PC or other computer using Web-based software. The Internet address of the telescopes is http://cfa- www.harvard.edu/cfa/sed/MicroObservatory/MicroObservatory.html. In the real-time mode, individuals have access to all of the telescope control functions without the need for an `on-site' operator. Users can sign up for a specific period of ti me. In the batch mode, users can submit requests for delayed telescope observations. After a MicroObservatory completes a job, the user is automatically notified by e-mail that the image is available for viewing and downloading from the Web site. The telescopes were designed for classroom instruction, as well as for use by students and amateur astronomers for original scientific research projects. We are currently examining a variety of technical and educational questions about the use of the telescopes including: (1) What are the best approaches to scheduling real-time versus batch mode observations? (2) What criteria should be used for allocating telescope time? (3) With deployment of more than one telescope, is it advantageous for each telescope to be used for just one type of observation, i.e., some for photometric use, others for imaging? And (4) What are the most valuable applications of the MicroObservatories in astronomical research? Support for the Micro

  9. Astronomical Data Center Bulletin, volume 1, no. 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Warren, W. H., Jr. (Editor); Nagy, T. A. (Editor); Mead, J. M. (Editor)

    1980-01-01

    Information about work in progress on astronomical catalogs is presented. In addition to progress reports, an upadated status list for astronomical catalogs available at the Astronomical Data Center is included. Papers from observatories and individuals involved with astronomical data are also presented.

  10. Thomas Kuhn's Influence on Astronomers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shipman, Harry L.

    2000-01-01

    Surveys the astronomical community on their familiarity with the work of Thomas Kuhn. Finds that for some astronomers, Kuhn's thought resonated well with their picture of how science is done and provided perspectives on their scientific careers. (Author/CCM)

  11. Harvey Butcher: a passion for astronomical instrumentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhathal, Ragbir

    2014-11-01

    This paper covers some aspects of the scientific life of Harvey Butcher who was the Director of the Research School for Astronomy and Astrophysics at the Australian National University in Canberra from September 2007 to January 2013. He has made significant contributions to research on the evolution of galaxies, nucleosynthesis, and on the design and implementation of advanced astronomical instrumentation including LOFAR (Low Frequency Array Radio telescope). He is well known for his discovery of the Butcher-Oemler effect. Before coming to Australia he was the Director of the Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy from September 1991 to January 2007. In 2005 he was awarded a Knighthood in the Order of the Netherlands Lion for contributions to interdisciplinary science, innovation and public outreach.This paper is based on an interview conducted by the author with Harvey Butcher for the National Project on Significant Australian Astronomers sponsored by the National Library of Australia. Except otherwise stated, all quotations used in this paper are from the Butcher interview which has been deposited in the Oral History Archives of the National Library.

  12. Developing an astronomical observatory in Paraguay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troche-Boggino, Alexis E.

    Background: Paraguay has some heritage from the astronomy of the Guarani Indians. Buenaventura Suarez S.J. was a pioneer astronomer in the country in the XVIII century. He built various astronomical instruments and imported others from England. He observed eclipses of Jupiter's satellites and of the Sun and Moon. He published his data in a book and through letters. The Japanese O.D.A. has collaborated in obtaining equipment and advised their government to assist Paraguay in building an astronomical observatory, constructing a moving-roof observatory and training astronomers as observatory operators. Future: An astronomical center is on the horizon and some possible fields of research are being considered. Goal: To improve education at all possible levels by not only observing sky wonders, but also showing how instruments work and teaching about data and image processing, saving data and building a data base. Students must learn how a modern scientist works.

  13. Science Initiatives of the US Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, R. J.

    2012-09-01

    The United States Virtual Astronomical Observatory program is the operational facility successor to the National Virtual Observatory development project. The primary goal of the US VAO is to build on the standards, protocols, and associated infrastructure developed by NVO and the International Virtual Observatory Alliance partners and to bring to fruition a suite of applications and web-based tools that greatly enhance the research productivity of professional astronomers. To this end, and guided by the advice of our Science Council (Fabbiano et al. 2011), we have focused on five science initiatives in the first two years of VAO operations: 1) scalable cross-comparisons between astronomical source catalogs, 2) dynamic spectral energy distribution construction, visualization, and model fitting, 3) integration and periodogram analysis of time series data from the Harvard Time Series Center and NASA Star and Exoplanet Database, 4) integration of VO data discovery and access tools into the IRAF data analysis environment, and 5) a web-based portal to VO data discovery, access, and display tools. We are also developing tools for data linking and semantic discovery, and have a plan for providing data mining and advanced statistical analysis resources for VAO users. Initial versions of these applications and web-based services are being released over the course of the summer and fall of 2011, with further updates and enhancements planned for throughout 2012 and beyond.

  14. Advances in Exoplanet Observing by Amateur Astronomers (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conti, D. M.

    2017-06-01

    (Abstract only) This past year has seen a marked increase in amateur astronomer participation in exoplanet research. This has ranged from amateur astronomers helping professional astronomers confirm candidate exoplanets, to helping refine the ephemeris of known exoplanets. In addition, amateur astronomers have been involved in characterizing such exotic objects as disintegrating planetesimals. However, the involvement in such pro/am collaborations has also required that amateur astronomers follow a more disciplined approach to exoplanet observing.

  15. Astronomical Data Center Bulletin, volume 1, number 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nagy, T. A.; Warren, W. H., Jr.; Mead, J. M.

    1981-01-01

    Work in progress on astronomical catalogs is presented in 16 papers. Topics cover astronomical data center operations; automatic astronomical data retrieval at GSFC; interactive computer reference search of astronomical literature 1950-1976; formatting, checking, and documenting machine-readable catalogs; interactive catalog of UV, optical, and HI data for 201 Virgo cluster galaxies; machine-readable version of the general catalog of variable stars, third edition; galactic latitude and magnitude distribution of two astronomical catalogs; the catalog of open star clusters; infrared astronomical data base and catalog of infrared observations; the Air Force geophysics laboratory; revised magnetic tape of the N30 catalog of 5,268 standard stars; positional correlation of the two-micron sky survey and Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory catalog sources; search capabilities for the catalog of stellar identifications (CSI) 1979 version; CSI statistics: blue magnitude versus spectral type; catalogs available from the Astronomical Data Center; and status report on machine-readable astronomical catalogs.

  16. Astronomical Data in Undergraduate courses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clarkson, William I.; Swift, Carrie; Hughes, Kelli; Burke, Christopher J. F.; Burgess, Colin C.; Elrod, Aunna V.; Howard, Brittany; Stahl, Lucas; Matzke, David; Bord, Donald J.

    2016-06-01

    We present status and plans for our ongoing efforts to develop data analysis and problem-solving skills through Undergraduate Astronomy instruction. While our initiatives were developed with UM-Dearborn’s student body primarily in mind, they should be applicable for a wide range of institution and of student demographics. We focus here on two strands of our effort.Firstly, students in our Introductory Astronomy (ASTR 130) general-education course now perform several “Data Investigations”, in which they interrogate the Hubble Legacy Archive to illustrate important course concepts. This was motivated in part by the realization that typical public data archives now include tools to interrogate the observations that are sufficiently accessible that introductory astronomy students can use them to perform real science, albeit mostly at a descriptive level. We are continuing to refine these investigations, and, most importantly, to critically assess their effectiveness in terms of the student learning outcomes we wish to achieve. This work is supported by grant HST-EO-13758, provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555.Secondly, at the advanced-undergraduate level, students taking courses in our Astronomy minor are encouraged to gain early experience in techniques of astronomical observation and analysis that are used by professionals. We present two example projects from the Fall 2015 iteration of our upper-division course ASTR330 (The Cosmic Distance Ladder), one involving Solar System measurements, the second producing calibrated aperture photometry. For both projects students conducted, analysed, and interpreted observations using our 0.4m campus telescope, and used many of the same analysis tools as professional astronomers. This work is supported partly from a Research Initiation and Seed grant from the

  17. 110th Anniversary of the Engelhardt Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nefedyev, Y.

    2012-09-01

    The Engelhardt Astronomical Observatory (EAO) was founded in September 21, 1901. The history of creation of the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory was begun in 1897 with transfer a complimentary to the Kazan University of the unique astronomical equipment of the private observatory in Dresden by known astronomer Vasily Pavlovichem Engelgardt. Having stopped astronomical activity owing to advanced years and illnesses Engelgardt has decided to offer all tools and library of the Astronomical observatory of the Kazan University. Vasily Pavlovich has put the first condition of the donation that his tools have been established as soon as possible and on them supervision are started. In 1898 the decree of Emperor had been allocated means and the ground for construction of the Astronomical observatory is allocated. There is the main historical telescope of the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory the 12-inch refractor which was constructed by English master Grubbom in 1875. The unique tool of the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory is unique in the world now a working telescope heliometer. It's one of the first heliometers, left workshops Repsolda. It has been made in 1874 and established in Engelgardt observatory in 1908 in especially for him the constructed round pavilion in diameter of 3.6 m. Today the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory is the only thing scientifically - educational and cultural - the cognitive astronomical center, located on territory from Moscow up to the most east border of Russia. Currently, the observatory is preparing to enter the protected UNESCO World Heritage List.

  18. How Much Mass Makes a Black Hole? - Astronomers Challenge Current Theories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-08-01

    constraints on magnetar progenitor masses from the eclipsing binary W13", by B. Ritchie et al.). The same team published a first study of this object in 2006 ("A Neutron Star with a Massive Progenitor in Westerlund 1", by M.P. Muno et al., Astrophysical Journal, 636, L41). The team is composed of Ben Ritchie and Simon Clark (The Open University, UK), Ignacio Negueruela (Universidad de Alicante, Spain), and Norbert Langer (Universität Bonn, Germany, and Universiteit Utrecht, the Netherlands). The astronomers used the FLAMES instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope at Paranal, Chile to study the stars in the Westerlund 1 cluster. ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory and VISTA, the world's largest survey telescope. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  19. Scientific and technological Challenges in the development of astronomical instrumentation: E-ELT & ALMA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrado, David; Gallego, Jesús

    2009-12-01

    The answers to the present astrophysical questions require the development of highly sophisticated instrumentation, which needs long-term scheduling and large assets of human and material resources, managed by consortia of several institutions. Spain has carried in the last years serious efforts in this direction (GTC, ESO, ESA), but there is still a notable offset between astronomical research at the theoretical and observational levels and the development of instrumentation. Now, the incorporation of new countries to ESO (in particular Spain) to ESO and several future big projects (ALMA, E-ELT, Cosmic Vision), raise the level of exigency. The goal of this workshop is to gather the scientific teams and the industries of the sector to expose their needs and projects, and share experiences. The workshop is aimed as well at serving as an echo to convince financing agencies and the astronomical community in general of the need to promote with decision the development of astrophysical instrumentation and the tools for the analysis of related data. The formation and acknowledgement of instrumentation astronomers will be a key factor for Spain to meet the requirements of its position in Astronomy in the next decades. Here, we present the contributions most closely related to the development of E-ELT, ALMA and ESA missions.

  20. A Virtual Astronomical Research Machine in No Time (VARMiNT)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaver, John

    2012-05-01

    We present early results of using virtual machine software to help make astronomical research computing accessible to a wider range of individuals. Our Virtual Astronomical Research Machine in No Time (VARMiNT) is an Ubuntu Linux virtual machine with free, open-source software already installed and configured (and in many cases documented). The purpose of VARMiNT is to provide a ready-to-go astronomical research computing environment that can be freely shared between researchers, or between amateur and professional, teacher and student, etc., and to circumvent the often-difficult task of configuring a suitable computing environment from scratch. Thus we hope that VARMiNT will make it easier for individuals to engage in research computing even if they have no ready access to the facilities of a research institution. We describe our current version of VARMiNT and some of the ways it is being used at the University of Wisconsin - Fox Valley, a two-year teaching campus of the University of Wisconsin System, as a means to enhance student independent study research projects and to facilitate collaborations with researchers at other locations. We also outline some future plans and prospects.

  1. Hubble Catches Jupiter's Largest Moon Going to the 'Dark Side'

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-12-08

    Hubble Catches Jupiter's Largest Moon Going to the 'Dark Side' HST/WFPC2 Image of Jupiter and Ganymede Taken April 9, 2007 NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has caught Jupiter's moon Ganymede playing a game of "peek-a-boo." In this crisp Hubble image, Ganymede is shown just before it ducks behind the giant planet. Ganymede completes an orbit around Jupiter every seven days. Because Ganymede's orbit is tilted nearly edge-on to Earth, it routinely can be seen passing in front of and disappearing behind its giant host, only to reemerge later. Composed of rock and ice, Ganymede is the largest moon in our solar system. It is even larger than the planet Mercury. But Ganymede looks like a dirty snowball next to Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system. Jupiter is so big that only part of its Southern Hemisphere can be seen in this image. Hubble's view is so sharp that astronomers can see features on Ganymede's surface, most notably the white impact crater, Tros, and its system of rays, bright streaks of material blasted from the crater. Tros and its ray system are roughly the width of Arizona. The image also shows Jupiter's Great Red Spot, the large eye-shaped feature at upper left. A storm the size of two Earths, the Great Red Spot has been raging for more than 300 years. Hubble's sharp view of the gas giant planet also reveals the texture of the clouds in the Jovian atmosphere as well as various other storms and vortices. Astronomers use these images to study Jupiter's upper atmosphere. As Ganymede passes behind the giant planet, it reflects sunlight, which then passes through Jupiter's atmosphere. Imprinted on that light is information about the gas giant's atmosphere, which yields clues about the properties of Jupiter's high-altitude haze above the cloud tops. This color image was made from three images taken on April 9, 2007, with the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 in red, green, and blue filters. The image shows Jupiter and Ganymede in close to natural colors. For

  2. Generating Mosaics of Astronomical Images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bergou, Attila; Berriman, Bruce; Good, John; Jacob, Joseph; Katz, Daniel; Laity, Anastasia; Prince, Thomas; Williams, Roy

    2005-01-01

    "Montage" is the name of a service of the National Virtual Observatory (NVO), and of software being developed to implement the service via the World Wide Web. Montage generates science-grade custom mosaics of astronomical images on demand from input files that comply with the Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) standard and contain image data registered on projections that comply with the World Coordinate System (WCS) standards. "Science-grade" in this context signifies that terrestrial and instrumental features are removed from images in a way that can be described quantitatively. "Custom" refers to user-specified parameters of projection, coordinates, size, rotation, and spatial sampling. The greatest value of Montage is expected to lie in its ability to analyze images at multiple wavelengths, delivering them on a common projection, coordinate system, and spatial sampling, and thereby enabling further analysis as though they were part of a single, multi-wavelength image. Montage will be deployed as a computation-intensive service through existing astronomy portals and other Web sites. It will be integrated into the emerging NVO architecture and will be executed on the TeraGrid. The Montage software will also be portable and publicly available.

  3. The First Astronomical Observatory in Cluj-Napoca

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szenkovits, Ferenc

    2008-09-01

    One of the most important cities of Romania is Cluj-Napoca (Kolozsvár, Klausenburg). This is a traditional center of education, with many universities and high schools. From the second half of the 18th century the University of Cluj has its own Astronomical Observatory, serving for didactical activities and scientific researches. The famous astronomer Maximillian Hell was one of those Jesuits who put the base of this Astronomical Observatory. Our purpose is to offer a short history of the beginnings of this Astronomical Observatory.

  4. Storing Astronomical Information on the Romanian Territory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stavinschi, M.; Mioc, V.

    2004-12-01

    Romanian astronomy has a more than 2000-year old tradition, which is, however, little known abroad. The first known archive of astronomical information is the Dacian sanctuary at Sarmizegetusa Regia, erected in the first century AD, having similarities with that of Stonehenge. After a gap of more than 1000 years, more sources of astronomical information become available, mainly records of astronomical events. Monasteries were the safest storage places of these genuine archives. We present a classification of the ways of storing astronomical information, along with characteristic examples.

  5. A VO-Driven Astronomical Data Grid in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, C.; He, B.; Yang, Y.; Zhao, Y.

    2010-12-01

    With the implementation of many ambitious observation projects, including LAMOST, FAST, and Antarctic observatory at Doom A, observational astronomy in China is stepping into a brand new era with emerging data avalanche. In the era of e-Science, both these cutting-edge projects and traditional astronomy research need much more powerful data management, sharing and interoperability. Based on data-grid concept, taking advantages of the IVOA interoperability technologies, China-VO is developing a VO-driven astronomical data grid environment to enable multi-wavelength science and large database science. In the paper, latest progress and data flow of the LAMOST, architecture of the data grid, and its supports to the VO are discussed.

  6. Amateur astronomers in support of observing campaigns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, P.

    2014-07-01

    The Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy (PACA) project evolved from the observational campaign of C/2012 S1 or C/ISON. The success of the paradigm shift in scientific research is now implemented in other comet observing campaigns. While PACA identifies a consistent collaborative approach to pro-am collaborations, given the volume of data generated for each campaign, new ways of rapid data analysis, mining access, and storage are needed. Several interesting results emerged from the synergistic inclusion of both social media and amateur astronomers: - the establishment of a network of astronomers and related professionals that can be galvanized into action on short notice to support observing campaigns; - assist in various science investigations pertinent to the campaign; - provide an alert-sounding mechanism should the need arise; - immediate outreach and dissemination of results via our media/blogger members; - provide a forum for discussions between the imagers and modelers to help strategize the observing campaign for maximum benefit. In 2014, two new comet observing campaigns involving pro-am collaborations have been identified: (1) C/2013 A1 (C/Siding Spring) and (2) 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (CG). The evolving need for individual customized observing campaigns has been incorporated into the evolution of PACA (Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy) portal that currently is focused on comets: from supporting observing campaigns for current comets, legacy data, historical comets; interconnected with social media and a set of shareable documents addressing observational strategies; consistent standards for data; data access, use, and storage, to align with the needs of professional observers. The integration of science, observations by professional and amateur astronomers, and various social media provides a dynamic and evolving collaborative partnership between professional and amateur astronomers. The recent observation of comet 67P, at a magnitude of 21.2, from Siding

  7. Storing Astronomical Information on the Romanian Territory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stavinschi, Magda; Mioc, Vasile

    The Romanian astronomy has a more than 2000-year old tradition which is however too little known abroad. The first known archive of astronomical information is the Dacian sanctuary at Sarmizegetusa Regia very similar to that of Stonehenge. After a gap of more than 1000 years sources of astronomical information became to be recovered. They consist mainly of records of astronomical events seen on the Romanian territory. The most safe places to store these genuine archives were the monasteries. We present a classification of the manners of storing astronomical information along with characteristic examples.

  8. Different Categories of Astronomical Heritage: Issues and Challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruggles, Clive

    2012-09-01

    different forms of astronomical heritage, including its intangible aspects, that will help in the development of more integrated approaches to identification and cataloguing, protection and preservation; and 3. to increase global awareness of regional, national and local initiatives relating to astronomical heritage in all its forms. In pursuance of these aims, the meeting also recommended that the AWHWG, working in collaboration with the WGs on Astronomical Instruments and Archives, and other bodies as appropriate, should develop the following additional projects: 1. to establish guidelines to help in the identification and safeguarding of tangible and intangible astronomical heritage in all its forms; 2. to gather examples of existing best practice, and to make these available as case studies on their website; and 3. to develop the website of the Astronomy and World Heritage Initiative (AWHI) as a portal to existing on-line catalogues and thesauri. It also recommended that the WGs should work together to: 1. formulate recommendations about the ways in which links and common approaches should be developed in the future; and 2. organise a meeting of international experts in the historical and heritage aspects of astronomical structures, instruments, and archives, focussed specifically upon the task of developing more integrated approaches to identification and cataloguing, protection and preservation. This joint session will attempt to make headway on as many as possible of these issues. In this opening talk I will attempt to lay out some of the main challenges that we face, and outline what we hope to achieve in this session.

  9. International Schools for Young Astronomers Teaching for Astronomy Development: two programmes of the International Astronomical Union

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerbaldi, Michèle; DeGreve, Jean-Pierre; Guinan, Edward

    2011-06-01

    This text outlines the main features of two educational programmes of the International Astronomical Union (IAU): the International Schools for Young Astronomers (ISYA) and the Teaching for Astronomy Development programme (TAD), developed since 1967. The main goal of the International Schools for Young Astronomers (ISYA) is to support astronomy (education and research) in developing countries in organizing a 3-week School for students with typically M.Sc. degrees. The context in which the ISYA were developed changed drastically during the last decade. From a time when access to large telescopes was difficult and mainly organized on a nation-basis, nowadays the archives of astronomical data have accumulated at the same time that many major telescope become accessible, and they are accessible from everywhere, the concept of virtual observatory reinforcing this access. A second programme of the IAU, Teaching for Astronomy Development (TAD), partially based on a School, but also of shorter duration (typically one week) has a complementary objective. It is dedicated to assist countries that have little or no astronomical activity, but that wish to enhance their astronomy education. The fast development of the TAD programme over the past years is emphasized.

  10. Communicable Astronomy for IYA: Using the Networks of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific for Education and Outreach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manning, J.; Gibbs, M.; Gurton, S.; Fraknoi, A.

    2008-12-01

    At the forefront of sharing the excitement of the exploration of the universe for 120 years, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) is poised to use its networks and services to implement education and outreach programs for the 2009 International Year of Astronomy (IYA). The ASP is partnering with NASA, the International Astronomical Union (IAU), the American Astronomical Society (AAS) and other organizations on IYA projects, and is developing signature programs for implementation--with the overarching goal of employing its networks of scientists, educators and amateur astronomers in efforts to improve science education and science literacy. This presentation will describe the ASP's efforts to make astronomy and science "communicable" through these astronomy intermediaries--to reach the larger public, to link astronomy to other sciences, and to create legacy programs that will continue beyond 2009.

  11. GNAT: A Global Network of Astronomical Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crawford, David L.

    1995-12-01

    Astronomical resources are increasingly directed toward development of very large telescopes, and many facilities are compelled to cease operations of smaller telescopes. A real concern is emerging with respect to issues of access to astronomical imaging systems for the majority of astronomers who will have little or no opportunity to work with the larger telescopes. Further concern is developing with regard to the means for conducting observationally intensive fundamental astronomical imaging programs, such as surveys, monitoring, and standards calibration. One attractive potential solution is a global network of (automated) astronomical telescopes (GNAT). Initial steps have been taken to turn this network into a reality. GNAT has been incorporated as a nonprofit corporation, membership drives have begun and several institutions have joined. The first two open GNAT meetings have now been held to define hardware and software systems, and an order has been placed for the first of the GNAT automated telescopes. In this presentation we discuss the goals and status of GNAT and its implications for astronomical imaging.

  12. Franklin Edward Kameny (1925-2011, Astronomer)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, Jason

    2012-01-01

    Dr. Frank Kameny is best known today as one of the most important members of the gay rights movement in the United States, but he was also a PhD astronomer. In fact, it was his firing from his civil service position as astronomer for the US Army Map Service on the grounds of homosexuality that sparked his lifelong career of activism. Here, I explore some aspects of his short but interesting astronomical career and the role of the AAS in his life.

  13. Empowering schoolchildren to do astronomical science with images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raeside, L.; Busschots, B.; O'Cinneide, E.; Foy, S.; Keating, J. G.

    2005-06-01

    In 1991 the TIE (Telescopes in Education) Foundation provided schoolchildren with the ability to access professional observatory telescopes remotely. TIE has raised the profile of astronomy and science among schoolchildren. Since the initiation of this facility the TIE Foundation have spread their reach from one telescope in the US to many telescopes and many schools across the globe. The VTIE (Virtual Telescopes in Education) project was launched in 2001 to build on the success of TIE. The VTIE VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) provides a Web portal through which pupils can create a scientific proposal, retrieve astronomical images, and produce a scientific paper summarizing their learning experiences of the VTIE scientific process. Since the completion of the first formative evaluations of VTIE (which involved over 250 schoolchildren) it has been observed that the participating schoolchildren have had difficulty completing and understanding the practical imaging aspects of astronomical science. Our experimental observations have revealed that the imaging tools currently available to astronomers have not ported well to schools. The VTIE imaging tools developed during our research will provide schoolchildren with the ability to store, acquire, manipulate and analyze images within the VTIE VLE. It is hypothesized herein that the provision of exclusively child-centered imaging software components will improve greatly the children's empowerment within the VTIE scientific process. Consequentially the addition of fully integrated child-centered imaging tools will contribute positively to the overall VTIE goal to promote science among schoolchildren.

  14. Astronomical Symbolism in Australian Aboriginal Rock Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, Ray P.; Hamacher, Duane W.

    2011-05-01

    Traditional Aboriginal Australian cultures include a significant astronomical component, perpetuated through oral tradition and ceremony. This knowledge has practical navigational and calendrical functions, and sometimes extends to a deep understanding of the motion of objects in the sky. Here we explore whether this astronomical tradition is reflected in the rock art of Aboriginal Australians. We find several plausible examples of depictions of astronomical figures and symbols, and also evidence that astronomical observations were used to set out stone arrangements. However, we recognise that the case is not yet strong enough to make an unequivocal statement, and describe our plans for further research.

  15. Major Conference about Astronomical Technology in Munich

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-03-01

    continents. There will be plenary sessions and specialised working group meetings on virtually all subject areas related to modern astronomical technology, ranging from optical design, materials and fabrication to telescope structures, detectors and the associated discovery and research prospects. While the performance and results from the new, large ground-based facilities like the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT) will constitute one of the focal points, much attention will also be devoted to new projects in space astronomy, e.g., the Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST) , the planned successor to the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). Other space missions to be discussed are the XMM-Newton and Chandra X-Ray observatories. Radio Telescopes , herunder the projected Atacama Large Millimetre Array (ALMA) , as well as Optical Interferometry are other hot subjects, as are the current plans for optical telescopes in the extremely large class , with surface diameters of 30 - 100 metres. Press Conference An international Press Conference will be held at the meeting site in the Munich International Conference Center on Monday, March 27, at 12:15 hrs local time (CET) . It will be attended by some of the key participants, with possibilities for individual interviews. More information about the Press Conference is available from

  16. Introducing AstroGen: the Astronomy Genealogy Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenn, Joseph S.

    2016-12-01

    The Astronomy Genealogy Project (AstroGen), a project of the Historical Astronomy Division of the American Astronomical Society (AAS), will soon appear on the AAS website. Ultimately, it will list the world's astronomers with their highest degrees, theses for those who wrote them, academic advisors (supervisors), universities, and links to the astronomers or their obituaries, their theses when online, and more. At present the AstroGen team is working on those who earned doctorates with astronomy-related theses. We show what can be learned already, with just ten countries essentially completed.

  17. The Victorian Amateur Astronomer: Independent Astronomical Research in Britain 1820-1920

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapman, Allan

    1999-01-01

    This is the first book to look in detail at amateur astronomy in Victorian Britain. It deals with the technical issues that were active in Victorian astronomy, and reviews the problems of finance, patronage and the dissemination of scientific ideas. It also examines the relationship between the amateur and professional in Britain. It contains a wealth of previously unpublished biographical and anecdotal material, and an extended bibliography with notes incorporating much new scholarship. In The Victorian Amateur Astronomer, Allan Chapman shows that while on the continent astronomical research was lavishly supported by the state, in Britain such research was paid for out of the pockets of highly educated, wealthy gentlemen the so-called Grand Amateurs . It was these powerful individuals who commissioned the telescopes, built the observatories, ran the learned societies, and often stole discoveries from their state-employed colleagues abroad. In addition to the Grand Amateurs , Victorian Britain also contained many self-taught amateurs. Although they belonged to no learned societies, these people provide a barometer of the popularity of astronomy in that age. In the late 19th century, the comfortable middle classes clergymen, lawyers, physicians and retired military officers took to astronomy as a serious hobby. They formed societies which focused on observation, lectures and discussions, and it was through this medium that women first came to play a significant role in British astronomy. Readership: Undergraduate and postgraduate students studying the history of science or humanities, professional historians of science, engineering and technology, particularly those with an interest in astronomy, the development of astronomical ideas, scientific instrument makers, and amateur astronomers.

  18. US Astronomers Access to SIMBAD in Strasbourg

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oliversen, Ronald (Technical Monitor); Eichhorn, Guenther

    2004-01-01

    During the last year the US SIMBAD Gateway Project continued to provide services like user registration to the US users of the SIMBAD database in France. Currently there are over 4500 US users registered. We also provided user support by answering questions from users and handling requests for lost passwords when still necessary. Even though almost all users now access SIMBAD without a password, based on hostnames/IP addresses, there are still some users that need individual passwords. We continued to maintain the mirror copy of the SIMBAD database on a server at SAO. This allows much faster access for the US users. During the past year we again moved this mirror to a faster server to improve access for the US users. We again supported a demonstration of the SIMBAD database at the meeting of the American Astronomical Society in January. We provided support for the demonstration activities at the SIMBAD booth. We paid part of the fee for the SIMBAD demonstration. We continued to improve the cross-linking between the SIMBAD project and the Astrophysics Data System. This cross-linking between these systems is very much appreciated by the users of both the SIMBAD database and the ADS Abstract Service. The mirror of the SIMBAD database at SA0 makes this connection faster for the US astronomers. We exchange information between the ADS and SIMBAD on a daily basis. During the last year we also installed a mirror copy of the Vizier system from the CDS, in addition to the SIMBAD mirror.

  19. A SURVEY OF ASTRONOMICAL RESEARCH: A BASELINE FOR ASTRONOMICAL DEVELOPMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Ribeiro, V. A. R. M.; Russo, P.; Cárdenas-Avendaño, A., E-mail: vribeiro@ast.uct.ac.za, E-mail: russo@strw.leidenuniv.nl

    Measuring scientific development is a difficult task. Different metrics have been put forward to evaluate scientific development; in this paper we explore a metric that uses the number of peer-reviewed, and when available non-peer-reviewed, research articles as an indicator of development in the field of astronomy. We analyzed the available publication record, using the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/NASA Astrophysics Database System, by country affiliation in the time span between 1950 and 2011 for countries with a gross national income of less than 14,365 USD in 2010. This represents 149 countries. We propose that this metric identifies countries in ''astronomical development'' withmore » a culture of research publishing. We also propose that for a country to develop in astronomy, it should invest in outside expert visits, send its staff abroad to study, and establish a culture of scientific publishing. Furthermore, we propose that this paper may be used as a baseline to measure the success of major international projects, such as the International Year of Astronomy 2009.« less

  20. SAADA: Astronomical Databases Made Easier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michel, L.; Nguyen, H. N.; Motch, C.

    2005-12-01

    Many astronomers wish to share datasets with their community but have not enough manpower to develop databases having the functionalities required for high-level scientific applications. The SAADA project aims at automatizing the creation and deployment process of such databases. A generic but scientifically relevant data model has been designed which allows one to build databases by providing only a limited number of product mapping rules. Databases created by SAADA rely on a relational database supporting JDBC and covered by a Java layer including a lot of generated code. Such databases can simultaneously host spectra, images, source lists and plots. Data are grouped in user defined collections whose content can be seen as one unique set per data type even if their formats differ. Datasets can be correlated one with each other using qualified links. These links help, for example, to handle the nature of a cross-identification (e.g., a distance or a likelihood) or to describe their scientific content (e.g., by associating a spectrum to a catalog entry). The SAADA query engine is based on a language well suited to the data model which can handle constraints on linked data, in addition to classical astronomical queries. These constraints can be applied on the linked objects (number, class and attributes) and/or on the link qualifier values. Databases created by SAADA are accessed through a rich WEB interface or a Java API. We are currently developing an inter-operability module implanting VO protocols.

  1. Reporting Astronomical Discoveries: Past, Now, and Future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamaoka, Hitoshi; Green, Daniel W. E.; Samus, Nikolai N.; West, Richard

    2015-08-01

    Many new astronomical objects have been discovered over the years by amateur astronomers, and this continues to be the case. They have traditionally reported them (as have professional astronomers) to the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams (CBAT), which was established in the 19th century. This procedure has worked very well throughout the 20th century, moving under the umbrella of the newly established IAU in 1920. The discoverers have been honored by the formal announcement of their discoveries in the publications of the CBAT.In recent years, some professional research groups have established other ways of announcing their discoveries of explosive objects such as novae and supernovae; some do not now report their discoveries or spectroscopic confirmations of the transients to the CBAT, including often spectroscopic reports of objects posted to the CBAT "Transient Objects Confirmation Page" -- the highly successful TOCP webpage, which assigns official positional designations to new transients posted there by approved, registered users. This leads to a delay in formal announcements of discoveries by amateur astronomers in many cases, as well as inconsistent designations being put into use by individual groups. Amateur astronomers are feeling frustrated about this situation, and they hope that the IAU will help to settle the situation.We have proposed the new IAU commission NC-52, which will treat these phenomena in a continuation of Commission 6, through the CBAT. We hope to continuously support the reporting of the discoveries by amateur astronomers, as well as professional astronomers, who all deserve and desire proper recognition. Our strategy will maintain the firm trust between the amateur and professional astronomers, which is necessary for true collaboration. The plan is for the CBAT to work with collaborators to assure that discoveries posted on the TOCP are promptly designated and announced by the CBAT, even when confirmations are made elsewhere

  2. Some new astronomical facilities in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Shouguan

    1989-10-01

    For the 1990's, plans for some astronomical facilities and related research are being carried out in China. This report describes in some detail plans for radio astronomical facilities, a 150/220 cm Schmidt telescope, and experiments on a porcelain mirror material.

  3. Relativistic problems on astronomical constants.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Jinhe; Huang, Tianyi

    1999-06-01

    The fact that modern astronomical observational technique has made rapid progress and the 1PN approximation of general relativity has been extensively applied in celestial mechanics and astrometry, makes it is necessary to investigate and examine the system of astronomical constants carefully and rigorously in the relativistic framework. The mass of a celestial body in the solar system should be defined as its BD mass that changes relatively in an amount less than 10-19 and could be considered as a constant. The equations satisfied by the gravitational potentials are not Poisson equations anymore but depend on the choice of the coordinate gauge. Therefore the gravitational potentials cannot be expanded in the traditional harmonics. It is neccessary to choose the coordinate gauge and take BD multipole moments as astronomical constants. The obliquity of the ecliptic has been determined in high precision and it would be neccessary to give a conventional definition of the 1PN ecliptic. A relativistic definition of the geoid is important and left to be discussed. The astronomical constants that relate the units of time and length have been clearly defined but need to be clarified to avoid their misuse.

  4. Johann Leonhard Rost, "novelist" and astronomer; (German Title: Johann Leonhard Rost, "Romanist" und Astronom)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaab, Hans; Simons, Olaf

    Johann Leonhard Rost (1688-1727) of Nuremberg studied at Altdorf, Leipzig and Jena. During this time, he earned his living by writing gallant novels. In 1715, he returned to Nuremberg, where he pursued his juvenile inclination towards astronomy and became a serious astronomical observer. His introductions to astronomy, written around this time, contributed a lot to popularize astronomy. This contribution attempts to do justice to both the novelist and the astronomer Rost.

  5. Galactic archaeology for amateur astronomers: RR Lyrae stars as tracers of the Milky Way formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carballo-Bello, Julio A.; Martínez-Delgado, David; Fliri, Jürgen

    2011-06-01

    Cosmological models predict that large galaxies like the Milky Way formed from the accretion of smaller stellar systems. The most spectacular of these merger events are stellar tidal streams, rivers of stars and dark matter that envelop the discs of spiral galaxies. We present a research project for a collaboration with amateur astronomers in the study of the formation process of our Galaxy. The main objective is the search for RR Lyrae variable stars in the known stellar streams (Sagitarius, Monoceros, Orphan, etc) a project that can be carried out using small telescopes. The catalogue of candidate variable stars were selected from SDSS data based in colour criteria and it will be sent to interested amateur astronomers who wish to participate in scientific research in one of the most active and competitive topics in Galactic astronomy.

  6. Amateur Astronomers as Champions of IYA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berendsen, M.; White, V.; Hawkins, I.; Mayo, L.; Pompea, S. M.; Sparks, R.; Day, B.; Mann, T.; Walker, C.; Fienberg, R. T.

    2008-11-01

    One of the main goals of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009) is to provide the public with opportunities to experience the universe through the eyepiece of a telescope. Amateur astronomers are uniquely equipped to fulfill this goal by offering their knowledge, time, and telescopes at public events in their communities. The NASA Night Sky Network (http://nightsky.jpl.nasa.gov) will be a hub for access to programs that support amateur astronomers doing such outreach during IYA2009, including a set of monthly themes with materials and activities to complement each theme. Many of the programs will be available to amateur astronomers worldwide. Among the other programs and organizations collaborating with the ASP to provide resources to amateur astronomers in their roles as informal educators during IYA2009 are: GLOBE at Night, Dark Skies Discovery Sites, NASA's LCROSS Mission, IYA's Looking through a Telescope working group, NASA's Sun-Earth Connection, and Galileoscopes.

  7. Astronomical Odds: A Policy Framework for the Cosmic Impact Hazard

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-06-01

    171. 52 An early example of an expost approach to NEO interceptor design is Project Icarus, a study effort that recommended a Saturn-V class system...68 vii viii Astronomical Odds: A Policy Framework for the Cosmic Impact Hazard 3.2. "Giggle factor" within USAF study report...the access to the NEO SDT Study model provided by MIT Lincoln Laboratory, with special thanks to Grant Stokes and Jenifer Evans. I am grateful for

  8. An astronomical murder?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belenkiy, Ari

    2010-04-01

    Ari Belenkiy examines the murder of Hypatia of Alexandria, wondering whether problems with astronomical observations and the date of Easter led to her becoming a casualty of fifth-century political intrigue.

  9. Brightness Variations of Sun-like Stars: The Mystery Deepens - Astronomers facing Socratic "ignorance"

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-12-01

    Astrophysics, Australia National University), Maria-Rosa L. Cioni (Centre for Astrophysics Research, University of Hertfordshire, UK) and Igor Soszyński (Warsaw University Observatory). ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  10. Astronomical virtual observatory and the place and role of Bulgarian one

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrov, Georgi; Dechev, Momchil; Slavcheva-Mihova, Luba; Duchlev, Peter; Mihov, Bojko; Kochev, Valentin; Bachev, Rumen

    2009-07-01

    , publications, news and so on. This large growth of astronomical data and the necessity of an easy access to those data led to the foundation of the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). IVOA was formed in June 2002. By January 2005, the IVOA has grown to include 15 funded VO projects from Australia, Canada, China, Europe, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Russia, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. At the time being Bulgaria is not a member of European Astronomical Virtual Observatory and as the Bulgarian Virtual Observatory is not a legal entity, we are not members of IVOA. The main purpose of the project is Bulgarian Virtual Observatory to join the leading virtual astronomical institutions in the world. Initially the Bulgarian Virtual Observatory will include: - BG Galaxian virtual observatory; - BG Solar virtual observatory; - Department Star clusters of IA, BAS; - WFPDB group of IA, BAS. All available data will be integrated in the Bulgarian centers of astronomical data, conducted by the Wide Field Plate Archive data centre. For the above purpose POSTGRESQL or/and MySQL will be installed on the server of BG-VO and SAADA tools, ESO-MEX or/and DAL ToolKit to transform our FITS files in standard format for VO-tools. A part of the participants was acquainted with the principles of these products during the "Days of virtual observatory in Sofia" January, 2008.

  11. America's foremost early astronomer. [David Rittenhouse

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rubincam, David Parry; Rubincam, Milton, II

    1995-01-01

    The life of 18th century astronomer, craftsman, and partriot David Rittenhouse is detailed. As a craftsman, he distinguished himself as one of the foremost builders of clocks. He also built magnetic compasses and surveying instruments. The finest examples of his craftsmanship are considered two orreries, mechanical solar systems. In terms of astronomical observations, his best-known contribution was his observation of the transit of Venus in 1769. Rittenhouse constructed the first diffraction grating. Working as Treasurer of Pennsylvania throughout the Revolution, he became the first director of the Mint in 1792. Astronomical observations in later life included charting the position of Uranus after its discovery.

  12. The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Barker, T.; Castelaz, M.

    2010-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute is the home of the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA), a national effort to preserve, archive, and digitize astronomical photographic plate collections. APDA was formed in 2007 and presently holds more than 100,000 plates and films from more than a dozen observatory collections. While the photographic data pre-dates modern observational data taken with electronic instruments, it is nevertheless of extremely high quality. When one considers 100,000 plates and films in the APDA collection, some with 100's or 1000's of objects per plate, and plates taken over 100 years the value of the data in APDA becomes apparent. In addition to the astronomical photographic data collections, APDA also possesses two high precision glass plate measuring machines, GAMMA I and GAMMA II that were built for NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute. The measuring machines were used by a team of scientists under the leadership of the late Dr. Barry Lasker to develop the Guide Star Catalog and Digitized Sky Survey that guide and direct the Hubble Space Telescope. We will describe the current set of collections, plans for the measuring machines, and the efforts that have been made to assure preservation of plate collections.

  13. Progress on the New York State Observatory: a new 12-meter astronomical telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebring, T.; O'Dea, C.; Baum, S.; Teran, J.; Loewen, N.; Stutzki, C.; Egerman, R.; Bonomi, G.

    2014-07-01

    Over the past two years, the New York Astronomical Corporation (NYAC), the business arm of the Astronomical Society of New York (ASNY), has continued planning and technical studies toward construction of a 12-meter class optical telescope for the use of all New York universities and research institutions. Four significant technical studies have been performed investigating design opportunities for the facility, the dome, the telescope optics, and the telescope mount. The studies were funded by NYAC and performed by companies who have provided these subsystems for large astronomical telescopes in the past. In each case, innovative and cost effective approaches were identified, developed, analyzed, and initial cost estimates developed. As a group, the studies show promise that this telescope could be built at historically low prices. As the project continues forward, NYAC intends to broaden the collaboration, pursue funding, to continue to develop the telescope and instrument designs, and to further define the scientific mission. The vision of a historically large telescope dedicated to all New York institutions continues to grow and find new adherents.

  14. Nonnegative Matrix Factorization for Efficient Hyperspectral Image Projection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Iacchetta, Alexander S.; Fienup, James R.; Leisawitz, David T.; Bolcar, Matthew R.

    2015-01-01

    Hyperspectral imaging for remote sensing has prompted development of hyperspectral image projectors that can be used to characterize hyperspectral imaging cameras and techniques in the lab. One such emerging astronomical hyperspectral imaging technique is wide-field double-Fourier interferometry. NASA's current, state-of-the-art, Wide-field Imaging Interferometry Testbed (WIIT) uses a Calibrated Hyperspectral Image Projector (CHIP) to generate test scenes and provide a more complete understanding of wide-field double-Fourier interferometry. Given enough time, the CHIP is capable of projecting scenes with astronomically realistic spatial and spectral complexity. However, this would require a very lengthy data collection process. For accurate but time-efficient projection of complicated hyperspectral images with the CHIP, the field must be decomposed both spectrally and spatially in a way that provides a favorable trade-off between accurately projecting the hyperspectral image and the time required for data collection. We apply nonnegative matrix factorization (NMF) to decompose hyperspectral astronomical datacubes into eigenspectra and eigenimages that allow time-efficient projection with the CHIP. Included is a brief analysis of NMF parameters that affect accuracy, including the number of eigenspectra and eigenimages used to approximate the hyperspectral image to be projected. For the chosen field, the normalized mean squared synthesis error is under 0.01 with just 8 eigenspectra. NMF of hyperspectral astronomical fields better utilizes the CHIP's capabilities, providing time-efficient and accurate representations of astronomical scenes to be imaged with the WIIT.

  15. Extracting meaning from astronomical telegrams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, Matthew; Conwill, L.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Mahabal, A.; Donalek, C.; Drake, A.

    2011-01-01

    The rapidly emerging field of time domain astronomy is one of the most exciting and vibrant new research frontiers, ranging in scientific scope from studies of the Solar System to extreme relativistic astrophysics and cosmology. It is being enabled by a new generation of large synoptic digital sky surveys - LSST, PanStarrs, CRTS - that cover large areas of sky repeatedly, looking for transient objects and phenomena. One of the biggest challenges facing these is the automated classification of transient events, a process that needs machine-processible astronomical knowledge. Semantic technologies enable the formal representation of concepts and relations within a particular domain. ATELs (http://www.astronomerstelegram.org) are a commonly-used means for reporting and commenting upon new astronomical observations of transient sources (supernovae, stellar outbursts, blazar flares, etc). However, they are loose and unstructured and employ scientific natural language for description: this makes automated processing of them - a necessity within the next decade with petascale data rates - a challenge. Nevertheless they represent a potentially rich corpus of information that could lead to new and valuable insights into transient phenomena. This project lies in the cutting-edge field of astrosemantics, a branch of astroinformatics, which applies semantic technologies to astronomy. The ATELs have been used to develop an appropriate concept scheme - a representation of the information they contain - for transient astronomy using aspects of natural language processing. We demonstrate that it is possible to infer the subject of an ATEL from the vocabulary used and to identify previously unassociated reports.

  16. Radio and Optical Telescopes for School Students and Professional Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hosmer, Laura; Langston, G.; Heatherly, S.; Towner, A. P.; Ford, J.; Simon, R. S.; White, S.; O'Neil, K. L.; Haipslip, J.; Reichart, D.

    2013-01-01

    The NRAO 20m telescope is now on-line as a part of UNC's Skynet worldwide telescope network. The NRAO is completing integration of radio astronomy tools with the Skynet web interface. We present the web interface and astronomy projects that allow students and astronomers from all over the country to become Radio Astronomers. The 20 meter radio telescope at NRAO in Green Bank, WV is dedicated to public education and also is part of an experiment in public funding for astronomy. The telescope has a fantastic new web-based interface, with priority queuing, accommodating priority for paying customers and enabling free use of otherwise unused time. This revival included many software and hardware improvements including automatic calibration and improved time integration resulting in improved data processing, and a new ultra high resolution spectrometer. This new spectrometer is optimized for very narrow spectral lines, which will allow astronomers to study complex molecules and very cold regions of space in remarkable detail. In accordance with focusing on broader impacts, many public outreach and high school education activities have been completed with many confirmed future activities. The 20 meter is now a fully automated, powerful tool capable of professional grade results available to anyone in the world. Drop by our poster and try out real-time telescope control!

  17. The Past, Present, and Future of Astronomical Data Formats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mink, J.; Mann, R. G.; Hanisch, R.; Rots, A.; Seaman, R.; Jenness, T.; Thomas, B.; O'Mullane, W.

    2015-09-01

    The future of astronomy is inextricably entwined with the care and feeding of astronomical data products. Community standards such as FITS and NDF have been instrumental in the success of numerous astronomy projects. Their very success challenges us to entertain pragmatic strategies to adapt and evolve the standards to meet the aggressive data-handling requirements of facilities now being designed and built. We discuss characteristics that have made standards successful in the past, as well as desirable features for the future, and an open discussion follows.

  18. Astronomical Infrastructure for Data Access (AIDA): service activities for higher education and outreach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iafrate, G.; Ramella, M.; Boch, T.; Bonnarel, F.; Chèreau, F.; Fernique, P.; Osuna, P.

    2009-04-01

    We present preliminary simple interfaces developed to enable students, teachers, amateur astronomers and general public to access and use the wealth of astronomical data available in ground-based and space archives through the European Virtual Observatory (EuroVO). The development of these outreach interfaces are the aim of a workpackage of EuroVO-AIDA (Astronomical Infrastructure for Data Access), a project supported by EU in the framework of the FP7 Infrastructure Scientific Research Repositories initiative (project RI2121104). The aim of AIDA is to create an operating infrastructure enabling and stimulating new scientific usage of astronomy digital repositories. Euro VO AIDA is a collaboration between six European countries (PI Francoise Genova, CDS). The professional tools we adapt to the requirements of outreach activities are Aladin (CDS), Stellarium/VirGO (ESO) and VOSpec (ESA VO). Some initial requirements have been set a priori in order to produce a first version of the simplified interfaces, but the plan is to test the initial simplified versions with a sample of target users in order to take their feed-back into account for the development of the final outreach interface. The core of the test program consists of use cases we designed and complemented with proper multilingual documentation covering both the astrophysical context and the use of the software. In the special case of students in the age group 14-18 and their teachers, we take our use cases to schools. We work out the tests in classrooms supporting students working on PCs connected to the internet. At the current stage of the project, we are collecting the users feedback. Relevant links: Euro-VO AIDA Overview http://www.euro-vo.org/pub/aida/overview.html Euro-VO AIDA WP5 http://cds.u-strasbg.fr/twikiAIDA/bin/view/EuroVOAIDA/WP5WorkProgramme

  19. Infrared upconversion for astronomical applications. [laser applications to astronomical spectroscopy of infrared spectra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abbas, M. M.; Kostiuk, T.; Ogilvie, K. W.

    1975-01-01

    The performance of an upconversion system is examined for observation of astronomical sources in the low to middle infrared spectral range. Theoretical values for the performance parameters of an upconversion system for astronomical observations are evaluated in view of the conversion efficiencies, spectral resolution, field of view, minimum detectable source brightness and source flux. Experimental results of blackbody measurements and molecular absorption spectrum measurements using a lithium niobate upconverter with an argon-ion laser as the pump are presented. Estimates of the expected optimum sensitivity of an upconversion device which may be built with the presently available components are given.

  20. Early Astronomical Sequential Photography, 1873-1923

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonifácio, Vitor

    2011-11-01

    In 1873 Jules Janssen conceived the first automatic sequential photographic apparatus to observe the eagerly anticipated 1874 transit of Venus. This device, the 'photographic revolver', is commonly considered today as the earliest cinema precursor. In the following years, in order to study the variability or the motion of celestial objects, several instruments, either manually or automatically actuated, were devised to obtain as many photographs as possible of astronomical events in a short time interval. In this paper we strive to identify from the available documents the attempts made between 1873 and 1923, and discuss the motivations behind them and the results obtained. During the time period studied astronomical sequential photography was employed to determine the time of the instants of contact in transits and occultations, and to study total solar eclipses. The technique was seldom used but apparently the modern film camera invention played no role on this situation. Astronomical sequential photographs were obtained both before and after 1895. We conclude that the development of astronomical sequential photography was constrained by the reduced number of subjects to which the technique could be applied.

  1. Astronomía en la cultura

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López, A.; Giménez Benitez, S.; Fernández, L.

    La Astronomía en la Cultura es el estudio interdisciplinario a nivel global de la astronomía prehistórica, antigua y tradicional, en el marco de su contexto cultural. Esta disciplina abarca cualquier tipo de estudios o líneas de investigación en que se relacione a la astronomía con las ciencias humanas o sociales. En ella se incluyen tanto fuentes escritas, relatos orales como fuentes arqueológicas, abarcando entre otros, los siguientes temas: calendarios, observación práctica, cultos y mitos, representación simbólica de eventos, conceptos y objetos astronómicos, orientación astronómica de tumbas, templos, santuarios y centros urbanos, cosmología tradicional y la aplicación ceremonial de tradiciones astronómicas, la propia historia de la astronomía y la etnoastronomía (Krupp, 1989) (Iwaniszewski, 1994). En nuestro trabajo abordamos la historia y situación actual de esta disciplina, sus métodos y sus relaciones con otras áreas de investigación.

  2. Variable Star and Exoplanet Section of the Czech Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brát, L.; Zejda, M.

    2010-12-01

    We present activities of Czech variable star observers organized in the Variable Star and Exoplanet Section of the Czech Astronomical Society. We work in four observing projects: B.R.N.O. - eclipsing binaries, MEDUZA - intrinsic variable stars, TRESCA - transiting exoplanets and candidates, HERO - objects of high energy astrophysics. Detailed information together with O-C gate (database of eclipsing binaries minima timings) and OEJV (Open European Journal on Variable stars) are available on our internet portal http://var.astro.cz.

  3. SpS5: Accelerating the Rate of Astronomical Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, Ray P.

    2010-11-01

    Special Session 5 on Accelerating the Rate of Astronomical Discovery addressed a range of potential limits to progress: paradigmatic, technological, organizational, and political. It examined each issue both from modern and historical perspectives, and drew lessons to guide future progress. A number of issues were identified which may regulate the flow of discoveries, such as the balance between large strongly-focussed projects and instruments, designed to answer the most fundamental questions confronting us, and the need to maintain a creative environment with room for unorthodox thinkers and bold, high risk, projects. Also important is the need to maintain historical and cultural perspectives, and the need to engage the minds of the most brilliant young people on the planet, regardless of their background, ethnicity, gender, or geography.

  4. Astronomers celebrate a year of new Hubble results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1995-02-01

    to reach the telescope, had indeed passed through helium, and not only that, the helium was of just the right variety to match the established theory. Dr Jakobsen has spent more than 20 years working on this subject. His recent efforts concentrated on seeking out a quasar unobscured by clouds of hydrogen, which block the tell-tale signature of helium. His search drew him to the Space Telescope project and during the telescope's early years in orbit he studied 25 likely quasars and found one promising candidate. Dr Jacobsen then had to wait for the telescope's new optics before he could get the quality of data he needed to prove the existence of helium. "We were looking for a break in the cloud cover, so to speak," the astronomer said. "We had a tantalising glimpse of the quasar with the aberrated telescope but it was only after we fixed it that we could really get a clear answer. One of the first things that we did once we had the corrective optics in place was look at this object and it was exactly as we'd hoped." Getting the Universe to measure up When it comes to studying the expansion of the Universe, however, the telescope has raised morn; questions than answers. By determining how fast the Universe is expanding astronomers will be able to calculate its age and size. It may then become possible to discover what is the ultimate fate of the Universe; will it simply continue to expand until it evaporates? Will the expansion come to a complete stop? Or will the Universe stop expanding, start contracting and end in a "big crunch"? The rate at which the Universe expands is known as the Hubble Constant or H0. To measure this value, astronomers need to calculate how far away a galaxy is and how fast it is moving away from us. The former is difficult to determine because reliable distance indicators, sometimes known as "cosmic yardsticks ", such as variable stars and supernovae, must be found in the galaxies. An international team of astronomers recently used the Hubble

  5. Astronomers Win Protection for Key Part of Radio Spectrum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-06-01

    International Telecommunication Union meet to painstakingly parcel out the radio frequency spectrum between radio-based applications such as personal communications, satellite broadcasting, GPS and amateur radio, and the sciences of radio astronomy, earth exploration and deep space research. The WRC also coordinates sharing between services in the same radio bands. WRC decisions are incorporated into the Radio Regulations that govern radio services worldwide. The new spectrum allocations for radio astronomy are the first since 1979. Millimeter-wave astronomy was then in its infancy and many of its needs were not yet known. As astronomers began to explore this region of the spectrum they found spectral lines from many interesting molecules in space. Many of those lines had not fallen into the areas originally set aside for astronomy, but most will be under the new allocations. "It's a win for millimeter-wave science," said Dr. John Whiteoak of the Australia Telescope National Facility, Australian delegate to WRC-00. "This secures its future." The protection is a significant step for both existing millimeter-wave telescopes and new ones such as the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) now being planned by a U.S.-European consortium. Even at its isolated site in Chile's Atacama desert, ALMA would be vulnerable to interference from satellite emissions. Sensitive radio astronomy receivers are blinded by these emissions, just as an optical telescope would be by a searchlight. "There is more energy at millimeter and sub-millimeter wavelengths washing through the Universe than there is of light or any other kind of radiation," said ALMA Project Scientist, Dr. Al Wootten of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. "Imaging the sources of this energy can tell us a great deal about the formation of stars and galaxies, and even planets." "But the Earth's atmosphere isn't very kind to us - it has only a few windows at these frequencies, and not very transparent ones at that. They are

  6. ESO takes the public on an astronomical journey "Around the World in 80 Telescopes"

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-03-01

    Year of Astronomy 2009. 100HA is on track to be the largest single science public outreach event ever, with more than 1500 events registered in over 130 countries. 100HA will take place over four days and nights, from 2-5 April 2009. It is a worldwide celebration composed of a broad range of activities aimed at involving the public. During this period, people from around the globe will share the experience and wonder of observing the sky. For many, it will be their first glimpse of the marvels of the heavens through a telescope. For others, it is the perfect opportunity to impart their knowledge and excitement, helping unveil the cosmos to fresh and eager eyes. Astronomers at ESO are also organising local public events near their headquarters in Garching, near Munich. In the Munich city centre, ESO astronomers, together with colleagues from the Excellence Cluster Universe, will share their views of the cosmos with members of the public. ESO in Chile is also participating in a series of events to celebrate the 100 Hours of Astronomy. In Antofagasta, an exhibition by international and local astrophotographers will be unveiled at the main mall in the city. Star parties will be organised for the public in the desert outside Antofagasta, in coordination with the local university UCN. In Santiago, ESO is offering, along with other international observatories and the Chilean astronomical community, a complete set of programmes, including public talks, night observations and interactive exhibitions. In San Pedro de Atacama, the ALMA project will install an inflatable planetarium for the local community, and astronomy workshops and star parties will be offered to the public. More information ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United

  7. NRAO Astronomer Honored by American Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2011-01-01

    Dr. Scott Ransom, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), received the American Astronomical Society's (AAS) Helen B. Warner Prize on January 11, at the society's meeting in Seattle, Washington. The prize is awarded annually for "a significant contribution to observational or theoretical astronomy during the five years preceding the award." Presented by AAS President Debra Elmegreen, the prize recognized Ransom "for his astrophysical insight and innovative technical leadership enabling the discovery of exotic, millisecond and young pulsars and their application for tests of fundamental physics." "Scott has made landmark contributions to our understanding of pulsars and to using them as elegant tools for investigating important areas of fundamental physics. We are very proud that his scientific colleagues have recognized his efforts with this prize," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. A staff astronomer at the NRAO since 2004, Ransom has led efforts using the National Science Foundation's Green Bank Telescope and other facilities to study pulsars and use them to make advances in areas of frontier astrophysics such as gravitational waves and particle physics. In 2010, he was on a team that discovered the most massive pulsar yet known, a finding that had implications for the composition of pulsars and details of nuclear physics, gravitational waves, and gamma-ray bursts. Ransom also is a leader in efforts to find and analyze rapidly-rotating millisecond pulsars to make the first direct detection of the gravitational waves predicted by Albert Einstein. In other work, he has advanced observational capabilities for finding millisecond pulsars in globular clusters of stars and investigated how millisecond pulsars are formed. A graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, Ransom served as an artillery officer in the U.S. Army. After leaving the Army, he earned a Ph.D. at Harvard University in 2001, and was a postdoctoral fellow

  8. Education and Public Outreach in the International Year of Astronomy at the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibbs, M. G.; Manning, J. G.; Gurton, S.; Fraknoi, A.; Berendsen, M.; Hurst, A.; White, V.

    2008-11-01

    At the forefront of sharing the excitement of our exploration of the universe for 120 years, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) is poised to use its networks and services to implement education and outreach programs for the 2009 International Year of Astronomy (IYA). The ASP is working with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the American Astronomical Society (AAS), National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO), Association of Science---Technology Centers (ASTC), and several other astronomical and educational organizations on IYA projects. The ASP will develop and implement four key signature programs, pending funding, for the IYA: a) IYA 2009 Cosmic Companion, with astronomy activities primarily for amateur astronomy clubs; b) Galileo Teacher Training Program, designed primarily for in-service teachers; c) Expanding the Informal Universe, to bring astronomy into smaller museums and nature centers; and d) Cosmic Clearing-House, an online educational resource for the best astronomy outreach resources and activities. The overarching goal for these programs is to bring together scientists, educators, and amateurs astronomers to improve science education and literacy through astronomy. The Society welcomes additional partners who seek to cooperate on IYA programs or work with the networks of formal and informal educators and amateur astronomers the ASP continues to support.

  9. GASP-Galway astronomical Stokes polarimeter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kyne, G.; Sheehan, B.; Collins, P.; Redfern, M.; Shearer, A.

    2010-06-01

    The Galway Astronomical Stokes Polarimeter (GASP) is an ultra-high-speed, full Stokes, astronomical imaging polarimeter based upon a Division of Amplitude Polarimeter. It has been developed to resolve extremely rapid stochastic (~ms) variations in objects such as optical pulsars, magnetars and magnetic cataclysmic variables. The polarimeter has no moving parts or modulated components so the complete Stokes vector can be measured from just one exposure - making it unique to astronomy. The time required for the determination of the full Stokes vector is limited only by detector efficiency and photon fluxes. The polarimeter utilizes a modified Fresnel rhomb that acts as a highly achromatic quarter wave plate and a beamsplitter (referred to as an RBS). We present a description of how the DOAP works, some of the optical design for the polarimeter. Calibration is an important and difficult issue with all polarimeters, but particularly in astronomical polarimeters. We give a description of calibration techniques appropriate to this type of polarimeter.

  10. Observatory Sponsoring Astronomical Image Contest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-05-01

    Forget the headphones you saw in the Warner Brothers thriller Contact, as well as the guttural throbs emanating from loudspeakers at the Very Large Array in that 1997 movie. In real life, radio telescopes aren't used for "listening" to anything - just like visible-light telescopes, they are used primarily to make images of astronomical objects. Now, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) wants to encourage astronomers to use radio-telescope data to make truly compelling images, and is offering cash prizes to winners of a new image contest. Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio-optical composite image of giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1316, showing the galaxy (center), a smaller companion galaxy being cannibalized by NGC 1316, and the resulting "lobes" (orange) of radio emission caused by jets of particles spewed from the core of the giant galaxy Click on image for more detail and images CREDIT: Fomalont et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF "Astronomy is a very visual science, and our radio telescopes are capable of producing excellent images. We're sponsoring this contest to encourage astronomers to make the extra effort to turn good images into truly spectacular ones," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. The contest, offering a grand prize of $1,000, was announced at the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The image contest is part of a broader NRAO effort to make radio astronomical data and images easily accessible and widely available to scientists, students, teachers, the general public, news media and science-education professionals. That effort includes an expanded image gallery on the observatory's Web site. "We're not only adding new radio-astronomy images to our online gallery, but we're also improving the organization and accessibility of the images," said Mark Adams, head of education and public outreach (EPO) at NRAO. "Our long-term goal is to make the NRAO Image Gallery an international resource for radio astronomy imagery

  11. Astronomical database and VO-tools of Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazhaev, A. E.; Protsyuk, Yu. I.

    2010-05-01

    Results of work in 2006-2009 on creation of astronomical databases aiming at development of Nikolaev Virtual Observatory (NVO) are presented in this abstract. Results of observations and theirreduction, which were obtained during the whole history of Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (NAO), are included in the databases. The databases may be considered as a basis for construction of a data centre. Images of different regions of the celestial sphere have been stored in NAO since 1929. About 8000 photo plates were obtained during observations in the 20th century. Observations with CCD have been started since 1996. Annually, telescopes of NAO, using CCD cameras, create data volume of several tens of gigabytes (GB) in the form of CCD images and up to 100 GB of video records. At the end of 2008, the volume of accumulated data in the form of CCD images was about 300 GB. Problems of data volume growth are common in astronomy, nuclear physics and bioinformatics. Therefore, the astronomical community needs to use archives, databases and distributed grid computing to cope with this problem in astronomy. The International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) was formed in June 2002 with a mission to "enable the international utilization of astronomical archives..." The NVO was created at the NAO website in 2008, and consists of three main parts. The first part contains 27 astrometric stellar catalogues with short descriptions. The files of catalogues were compiled in the standard VOTable format using eXtensible Markup Language (XML), and they are available for downloading. This is an example of the so-called science-ready product. The VOTable format was developed by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) for exchange of tabular data. A user may download these catalogues and open them using any standalone application that supports standards of the IVOA. There are several directions of development for such applications, for example, search of catalogues and images

  12. Astronomical Books and Charts in the Book of Bibliographie Coreenne

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ki-Won; Yang, Hong-Jin; Park, Myeong-Gu

    2008-06-01

    We investigate astronomical materials listed in the book of Bibliographie Coréenne written by Maurice Courant. He classified ancient Korean books into nine Divisions (?) and thirty six Classes (?), and published them as three volumes (ranging from 1894 to 1896) and one supplement (in 1901). In total, 3,821 books including astronomical ones are listed together with information on physical size, possessional place, bibliographical note, and so forth. Although this book is an essential one in the field of Korea bibliography and contains many astronomical materials such as Cheon-Mun-Ryu-Cho ????, Si-Heon-Seo ??????, and Cheon-Sang-Yeol-Cha-Bun-Ya-Ji-Do ????????, it has not been well known to the public nor to astronomical society. Of 3,821 catalogues, we found that about 50 Items (?) are related to astronomy or astrology, and verified that most ! of them are located in the Kyujanggak Royal Library ???. We also found an unknown astronomical chart, Hon-Cheon-Chong-Seong-Yeol-Cha-Bun-Ya-Ji-Do ??????????. Because those astronomical materials are not well known to international astronomical community and there have been few studies on the materials in Korea, we here introduce and review them, particularly with the astronomical viewpoint.

  13. 150th Anniversary of the Astronomical Observatory Library of Sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solntseva, T.

    The scientific library of the Astronomical observatory of Kyiv Taras Shevchenko University is one of the oldest ones of such a type in Ukraine. Our Astronomical Observatory and its scientific library will celebrate 150th anniversary of their foundation. 900 volumes of duplicates of Olbers' private library underlay our library. These ones were acquired by Russian Academy of Sciences for Poulkovo observatory in 1841 but according to Struve's order were transmitted to Kyiv Saint Volodymyr University. These books are of great value. There are works edited during Copernicus', Kepler's, Galilei's, Newton's, Descartes' lifetime. Our library contains more than 100000 units of storage - monographs, periodical astronomical editions from the first (Astronomische Nachrichten, Astronomical journal, Monthly Notices etc.), editions of the majority of the astronomical observatories and institutions of the world, unique astronomical atlases and maps

  14. AAS Oral History Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buxner, Sanlyn; Holbrook, Jarita; AAS Oral History Team

    2016-06-01

    Now in its fourth year, the AAS Oral History Project has interviewed over 80 astronomers from all over the world. Led by the AAS Historical Astronomy Division (HAD) and partially funded by the American Institute of Physics Niels Bohr Library and ongoing support from the AAS, volunteers have collected oral histories from astronomers at professional meetings starting in 2015, including AAS, DPS, and the IAU general assembly. Each interview lasts one and a half to two hours and focuses on interviewees’ personal and professional lives. Questions include those about one’s family, childhood, strong influences on one’s scientific career, career path, successes and challenges, perspectives on how astronomy is changing as a field, and advice to the next generation. Each interview is audio recorded and transcribed, the content of which is checked with each interviewee. Once complete, interview transcripts are posted online as part of a larger oral history library at https://www.aip.org/history-programs/niels-bohr-library/oral-histories. Future analysis will reveal a rich story of astronomers and will help the community address issues of diversity, controversies, and the changing landscape of science. We are still recruiting individuals to be interviewed from all stages of career from undergraduate students to retired and emeritus astronomers. Contact Jarita Holbrook to schedule an interview or to find out more information about the project (astroholbrook@gmail.com). Also, contact Jarita Holbrook if you would like to become an interviewer for the project.

  15. ORCID Uptake in the Astronomical Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmquist, Jane

    2015-08-01

    The IAU General Assembly provides librarians with a unique opportunity to interact with astronomers from all over the world. From the perspective of an ORCID Ambassador, the Focus Group Meeting on "Scholarly Publication in Astronomy" also provides an opportunity to demonstrate the cooperation and collaboration needed by individual astronomers, societies, librarians, publishers and bibliographic database providers to achieve universal adoption of ORCID, a standard unique identifier for authors, just as the DOI (digital object identifier) has been adopted for each journal article published.I propose to 1) present at the Focus Group Meeting an update on the uptake of ORCID by members of the astronomical community and 2) set up a small station (TBA) near the IAU registration area where librarians can show researchers how to register for an ORCID in 30 seconds.

  16. A Student-Centered Astronomical Research Community of Practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genet, Russell; Johnson, Jolyon; Boyce, Pat; Boyce, Grady; Buchheim, obert; Harshaw, Richard; Kenney, John; Collins, Dwight; Rowe, David; Brewer, Mark; Estrada, Reed; Estrada, Chris; Gillette, Sean; Ridgely, John; McNab, Christine; Freed, Rachel; Wallen, Vera

    2016-05-01

    For over a decade, students from Cuesta College and number of high schools have engaged in astronomical research during one-term seminars. A community of practice - consisting of students, educators, and astronomers - has formed that is centered on supporting the students' astronomical research. The seminar has recently adopted distance education technology and automated telescopes in a hybrid form of on-line and inperson collaborations between students, educators, and astronomers. This hybridization is not only resulting in new areas of growth and opportunity, but has created a number of challenges. For example, as more schools joined this seminar, standardized teaching materials such as a textbook and self-paced, online learning units had to be developed. Automated telescopes devoted to expanding student research opportunities within this community of practice are being brought on line by Concordia University and the Boyce Research Initiatives and Educational Foundation. The Institute for Student Astronomical Research supports this growing community in many ways including maintaining a website and editing books of student papers published through the Collins Foundation Press.

  17. Stardial -- an autonomous astronomical camera on the WWW

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCullough, P. R.; Thakkar, U.

    1997-05-01

    The use of an autonomous electronic camera, called ``Stardial,'' for undergraduate instruction is described. Stardial delivers images of the night sky nearly in real-time to the world wide web (www.astro.uiuc.edu/stardial/). The remote instrumentation of Stardial is robust, inexpensive, and accomodates many students asynchronously with respect to the instructor(s). The guiding philosophy of the curriculum is to provide students with authentic astronomical data so that they may learn about science by doing it themselves on the internet. Students respond favorably to the opportunity to learn from their own experiences with genuine data, complete with its irregularities and its surprises. Perhaps surprisingly, 9 of 10 self-selected student volunteers in our pilot project were female. Stardial's instrumentation is similar to that of Gaustad et al., and to that of Richmond, Droege, et al. (both at this same meeting). Stardial has benefitted from contributions from students, especially Lawrence Tan, Troy Klyber, Jim Pulokas, Jim Waldemer, and Diana Lopez, and from a number of professionals, especially G.T. Becker, Mike Newberry, John Dolby, Tom Droege, Bob Mutel, Mike Richmond, John Thorstensen, and Rick White. Stardial is funded by the University of Illinois, primarily from the office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs. We welcome participation from amateur astronomers and other educators.

  18. Women Astronomers: Australia: Women astronomers in Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhathal, Ragbir

    2001-08-01

    Ragbir Bhathal summarizes the role played by women astronomers in Australia's astronomy, now and in the past. Australia has a great tradition in astronomy, from the early observations of Aboriginal people through the colonial drive to explore and understand, culminating in the established excellence of research there today. Women have contributed to this achievement in no small way, yet their contribution has been unremarked, if not ignored. Here I summarize the historical and present state of affairs and look forward to a brighter and more equitable future.

  19. The Use of Astronomical Seeing Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teare, S. W.

    2002-12-01

    Very few observatories have access to a daily record of the astronomical seeing over an extended historical period. An exception to this is the Mount Wilson Observatory (MWO) whose astronomical seeing logs cover the period from shortly after the observatory was founded in 1904 through to the present day. These measurements provide a unique look into the changes to the seeing conditions at a major US observatory site. While the keeping of this record has been entrusted to many at the observatory, most often the telescope night assistants, these measurements have been taken diligently and from all accounts repeatably over the years. The early workers at MWO developed an 8-point scale that was used to evaluate the seeing. This scale began as a measure of how large a telescope aperture would provide diffraction limited seeing during a given night. If a small telescope aperture was needed to see diffraction rings, then the seeing was poor and the seeing number would be small. Of course a larger number on the scale then denotes better seeing. This became known as the Mount Wilson Seeing Scale and a variation of it is still in common use at the observatory. This scale has not always had the strongest support in the astronomical community, but its use has resulted in a nearly continuous set of comparable data. In this paper astronomical seeing data from MWO is presented and analyzed using several different approaches. It shows that there are very long period events that can be identified and also shows that the astronomical seeing, even at a very good site, is not guaranteed over the life of the observatory.

  20. The French Astronomical Archives Alidade Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Debarbat, S.; Bobis, L.

    2004-12-01

    The present state of Alidade, an archival project of Paris Observatory, including not only archival papers, but also instruments, documents, iconography, paintings etc., of various institutions, is described. Documents and collections, e.g. from donations or purchases, are still integrated into the archives, and selected material is displayed in temporary exhibits at the Observatory. Modern uses of old material are briefly mentioned

  1. International Astronomical Search Collaboration: Online Educational Outreach Program in Astronomical Discovery for Middle School, High School, & College Students and Citizen Scientists

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, P.

    2016-12-01

    The International Astronomical Search Collaboration (IASC = "Isaac") in an online educational outreach program in planetary science. Citizen scientists and students from middle schools, high schools, and colleges make original discoveries of Main Belt asteroids. They discover trans-Neptunian objects and near-Earth objects. To date there have been discoveries of 1300 provisional MBAs, 7 TNOs, 2 potentially hazardous NEOs, and one Jupiter-family comet 276P/Vorobjov. IASC receives images from the Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii. Images are provided by the 1.8-m Pan-STARRS telescopes (PS1, PS2). These telescopes have the world's largest CCD cameras that produce 3o fields containing 1.4 billion pixels. These images are partitioned into 208 sub-images that are distributed online to the participating citizen scientists and schools (see http://iasc.hsutx.edu). Using the software Astrometrica, the sub-images are searched for moving object discoveries that are recorded with astrometry then reported to the Minor Planet Center (Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Harvard). There are >5,000 citizen scientists and 700 schools that participate in the IASC asteroid searches. They come from more than 80 countries. And, the cost to participate…is free. Of the 1300 provisional MBA discoveries, 39 have been numbered and cataloged by the International Astronomical Union (Paris). The numbered discoveries are named by their citizen scientist and student discoverers. IASC works in conjunction with the NASA Asteroid Grand Challenge providing digital badging to the students (https://www.nasa.gov/feature/the-asteroid-grand-challenge-digital-badging-effort). IASC works online with the teachers from the participating schools, training them using videoconferencing to use Astrometrica in the search for, measurement of, and reporting of MBA discoveries by their students.

  2. Hosting an `Ask the Astronomer' Site on the Internet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Odenwald, S. F.

    1996-12-01

    Since 1995, the World Wide Web has explosively evolved into a significant medium for dispensing astronomical information to the general public. In addition to the numerous image archives that have proliferated, an increasing number of sites invite visitors to pose questions about astronomy and receive answers provided by professional astronomers. In this paper, I describe the operation of an Ask the Astronomer site that was opened on the WWW during August, 1995 as part of an astronomy education resource area called the "Astronomy Cafe" (URL=http://www2.ari.net/home/odenwald/cafe.html). The Astronomy Cafe includes a number of documents describing: a career in astronomy; how research papers are written; essays about cosmology, hyperspace and infrared astronomy; and the results from a 100-question, just for fun, personality test which distinguishes astronomers from non-astronomers. The Ask the Astronomer site is operated by a single astronomer through private donations and is now approaching its 500th day of operation. It contains over 2000+ questions and answers with a growth rate of 5 - 10 questions per day. It has attracted 70,000 visitors who are responsible for nearly 1 million 'hits' during the site's lifetime. The monthly statistics provide a unique survey of the kinds of individuals and organizations who visit Ask the Astronomer-type web sites, moreover, the accumulated questions provide a diagnostic X-ray into the public mind in the area of astronomy. I will present an analysis of the user demographics, and the types of questions that appear to be the most frequently asked. A paper copy of the complete index of these questions will be available for inspection.

  3. KPS-1b: The First Transiting Exoplanet Discovered Using an Amateur Astronomer's Wide-field CCD Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burdanov, Artem; Benni, Paul; Sokov, Eugene; Krushinsky, Vadim; Popov, Alexander; Delrez, Laetitia; Gillon, Michael; Hébrard, Guillaume; Deleuil, Magali; Wilson, Paul A.; Demangeon, Olivier; Baştürk, Özgür; Pakštiene, Erika; Sokova, Iraida; Rusov, Sergei A.; Dyachenko, Vladimir V.; Rastegaev, Denis A.; Beskakotov, Anatoliy; Marchini, Alessandro; Bretton, Marc; Shadick, Stan; Ivanov, Kirill

    2018-07-01

    We report the discovery of the transiting hot Jupiter KPS-1b. This exoplanet orbits a V = 13.0 K1-type main-sequence star every 1.7 days, has a mass of {1.090}-0.087+0.086 M Jup and a radius of {1.03}-0.12+0.13 R Jup. The discovery was made by the prototype Kourovka Planet Search (KPS) project, which used wide-field CCD data gathered by an amateur astronomer using readily available and relatively affordable equipment. Here we describe the equipment and observing technique used for the discovery of KPS-1b, its characterization with spectroscopic observations by the SOPHIE spectrograph and with high-precision photometry obtained with 1 m class telescopes. We also outline the KPS project evolution into the Galactic Plane eXoplanet survey. The discovery of KPS-1b represents a new major step of the contribution of amateur astronomers to the burgeoning field of exoplanetology.

  4. New astronomical references in two Catalonian late medieval documents.

    PubMed

    Martínez, María José; Marco, Francisco J

    2014-01-01

    In 2008, after 13 years of preparation, the Generalitat of Catalunya finished the publication of the 10 volumes of the Dietaris de la Generalitat de Catalunya. The Dietaris, as well as a closely related source, the llibre de Jornades 1411/1484 de Jaume Safont, cover the period of 1411 to 1539. In this article, we examine astronomical references contained in these two sources, and place them in their historical context. Our main focus lies on astronomical phenomena that have not previously been published in the astronomical literature. In fact, relatively few astronomical records are accessible in Spanish medieval and early modern history, and our paper intends to fill this gap partially.

  5. Interference in astronomical speckle patterns

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Breckinridge, J. B.

    1976-01-01

    Astronomical speckle patterns are examined in an atmospheric-optics context in order to determine what kind of image quality is to be expected from several different imaging techniques. The model used to describe the instantaneous complex field distribution across the pupil of a large telescope regards the pupil as a deep phase grating with a periodicity given by the size of the cell of uniform phase or the refractive index structure function. This model is used along with an empirical formula derived purely from the physical appearance of the speckle patterns to discuss the orders of interference in astronomical speckle patterns.

  6. First Light for ASTROVIRTEL Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-04-01

    Astronomical data archives increasingly resemble virtual gold mines of information. A new project, known as ASTROVIRTEL aims to exploit these astronomical treasure troves by allowing scientists to use the archives as virtual telescopes. The competition for observing time on large space- and ground-based observatories such as the ESA/NASA Hubble Space Telescope and the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT) is intense. On average, less than a quarter of applications for observing time are successful. The fortunate scientist who obtains observing time usually has one year of so-called proprietary time to work with the data before they are made publicly accessible and can be used by other astronomers. Precious data from these large research facilities retain their value far beyond their first birthday and may still be useful decades after they were first collected. The enormous quantity of valuable astronomical data now stored in the archives of the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and the Space Telescope-European Coordinating Facility (ST-ECF) is increasingly attracting the attention of astronomers. Scientists are aware that one set of observations can serve many different scientific purposes, including some that were not considered at all when the observations were first made. Data archives as "gold mines" for research [ASTROVIRTEL Logo; JPEG - 184 k] Astronomical data archives increasingly resemble virtual gold mines of information. A new project, known as ASTROVIRTEL or "Accessing Astronomical Archives as Virtual Telescopes" aims to exploit these astronomical treasure troves. It is supported by the European Commission (EC) within the "Access to Research Infrastructures" action under the "Improving Human Potential & the Socio-economic Knowledge Base" of the EC (under EU Fifth Framework Programme). ASTROVIRTEL has been established on behalf of the European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Southern Observatory (ESO) in response to rapid developments currently taking

  7. Long-publishing astronomers, or the problem of classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenn, Joseph S.

    2012-03-01

    In response to several discussions among astronomers and historians of astronomy, I started out to prepare a paper on long-publishing astronomers-those who published for 70, 75, or even 80 years. However, I soon ran into a number of questions of classification, and that turned out to be at least as interesting. How do we decide on classifications? Every time we choose classes, such as asteroids, planets and stars, we run into objects that seem to be in between. In the present case a number of questions arise: Who is an astronomer? Several of those with the longest publication runs started out as physicists, published for years in that subject only, and later took up astrophysics, eventually publishing a few papers in astronomy journals. What is a publication? Should we count publications in physics, chemistry, or mathematics? What about philosophy of science or history of science? What about the elderly retired astronomer presenting a memoir of his or her own work? Abstracts of oral presentations? Monographs? Textbooks? Book reviews? Obituaries? Then there is the problem of posthumous publications. Probably most would include papers in the pipeline when the astronomer dies, but what about the case where the coauthor finally publishes the paper as much as twenty-two years after the death of the person of interest? I eventually decided to make two lists, one which would include most of the above, and one restricted to papers that make contributions to physical science. Note that I do not say 'refereed', as that presents its own problems, especially when applied to periods before the twentieth century. I present a list of astronomers who have published for periods of 68 to 80 years and discuss the problems of defining such terms as astronomer and publication.

  8. The Eggen Card Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silvis, G.

    2014-06-01

    (Abstract only) Olin Eggen, noted astronomer (1919-1998), left to us all his raw observation records recorded on 3x5 cards. This project is to make all this data available as an online resource. History and progress of the project will be presented. Project details available at: https://sites.google.com/site/eggencards/home.

  9. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-12-08

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the processmore » of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.« less

  10. The Astronomical Society of the Pacific - Education and Public Outreach in the International Year of Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gibbs, Michael; Manning, J.; Gurton, S.; Fraknoi, A.; Berendsen, M.; Hurst, A.; White, V.

    2008-05-01

    At the forefront of sharing the excitement of our exploration of the universe for 120 years, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) is poised to use its networks and services to implement education and outreach programs for the 2009 International Year of Astronomy (IYA). The ASP is working with NASA, the AAS, NOAO, ASTC, and several other astronomical and educational organizations on IYA projects. The ASP will develop and implement four key signature programs, pending funding, for the IYA: a) "IYA Cosmic Calendar: A Year of Outreach Resources” with astronomy activities primarily for amateur astronomy clubs; b) "In the Footsteps of Galileo: A Teacher Training Program,” designed primarily for in-service teachers; c) an expanded "Astronomy from the Ground Up” program in IYA to bring astronomy into smaller museums and nature centers; and d) "The Cosmic Clearing-House,” an online educational resource for the best astronomy outreach resources and activities. The overarching goal for these programs is to bring together scientists, educators, and amateurs astronomers to improve science education and literacy through astronomy. The Society welcomes additional partners who seek to cooperate on IYA programs or work with the networks of formal and informal educators and amateur astronomers the ASP continues to support.

  11. Are opthalmic hydrophobic coatings useful for astronomical optics?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwab, Christian; Phillips, Andrew C.

    2010-07-01

    Astronomical optics are often exposed to moisture and dust in observatory environments, which frequently compromises their high-performance coatings. Suitable protective layers to resist dust and moisture accumulation would be extremely advantageous, but have received scant attention thus far. Hydrophobic and scratch-resistant coatings, developed primarily for opthalmic use, exhibit several attractive properties for astronomical optics. We examine the properties of one such coating and its applicability to astronomical mirrors and lenses. This includes efficiency of dust removal, abrasion resistance, moisture resistance, ease of stripping, and transmission across a wide wavelength range.

  12. Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade from 1924 to 1955

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radovanac, M.

    2014-12-01

    History of the Astronomical Observatory in Belgrade, as the presentation is done here, become the field of interest to the author of the present monograph in early 2002. Then, together with Luka C. Popovic, during the Conference "Development of Astronomy among Serbs II" held in early April of that year, he prepared a paper entitled "Astronomska opservatorija tokom Drugog Svetskog rata" (Astronomical Observatory in the Second World War). This paper was based on the archives material concerning the Astronomical Observatory which has been professionally bearing in mind the author's position the subject of his work.

  13. Distribution of a Generic Mission Planning and Scheduling Toolkit for Astronomical Spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kleiner, Steven C.

    1998-01-01

    This 2-year report describes the progress made to date on the project to package and distribute the planning and scheduling toolkit for the SWAS astronomical spacecraft. SWAS was scheduled to be launched on a Pegasus XL vehicle in fall 1995. Three separate failures in the launch vehicle have delayed the SWAS launch. The researchers have used this time to continue developing scheduling algorithms and GUI design. SWAS is expected to be launched this year.

  14. La mujer en la astronomía: pasado y presente

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubner, G.

    There exists a long and honorable tradition of participation of women in astronomy, affording many significant contributions to the field. Historically, however, many of these contributions have remained ignored, or recorded under the names of husbands, brothers or bosses. The present report includes an historical perspective, summarizing some of the most signicant contributions done along the last three centuries by female astronomers. Briefly: Catherina Hevelius (1646-1693), author of the largest and last stars catalog made without the aid of a telescope; Nicole-Reine Lepaute (1723-1788) extraordinary mathematician who predicted the path of Halley's Comet in 1757; Caroline Herschel (1750-1848) assistant of her brother William, discovered 8 comets, reduced the positions to a common epoch and published the catalog of 2500 nebulae observed by her brother, was elected honorary member of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS); Maria Mitchell (1818-1889), professor of astronomy and director of the Vassar College Observatory, dedicated her life to women's education; Williamina Fleming (1857-1911)discovered 94 of the 107 Wolf-Rayet stars known at her time, the bulk of the first HD catalog was based on her spectral types classification; Annie Cannon (1863-1941) examined and classified nearly 500.000 stars, rearranged Fleming's spectral system, defining the OBAFGKM series; Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868-1921) worked cataloging variable stars, discovered the period-luminosity relations in Cepheids; Cecilia Payne-Gaposhkin combined observations with theory to obtain a temperature scale for Cannon's spectral types; Ruby Payne-Scott (1912-1981), the first female radioastronomer in the world, developed the theory of aperture synthesis, in which most of the larger radio interferometers are based. The present trends are analized based on statistics of the International Astronomical Union (IAU): women represent 11.8% of the total of IAU members; in Argentina the percentage is 33

  15. Hartung's Astronomical Objects for Southern Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malin, David; Frew, David J.

    1995-10-01

    Many of the most spectacular astronomical objects are found in the southern skies. With this up-to-date, superbly illustrated handbook, both the amateur with binoculars and the expert with a telescope can make discoveries about new and interesting objects. Professor E. J. Hartung first produced his comprehensive and highly respected guide in 1968. Now the book has been greatly expanded and thoroughly revised, enhancing its character as an indispensable information source. With over 150 illustrations, new material is included on constellations and celestial coordinate systems as well as more modern descriptions of stars, nebulae and galaxies. The authors have included a new "southern Messier" list of objects. The authors' passion for their subject make this a unique and inspirational book. Many of the beautiful photographs were taken by David Malin, the world's leading astronomical photographer. The result will fascinate active and armchair astronomers alike.

  16. The Role of Amateur Astronomy to Outreach Astronomical Knowledge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khachatryan, Vachik; Voskanyan, Tsovak

    2016-12-01

    It is known that in the educational system of republic the astronomy is not taught as a separate subject. Moreover, there are no telescopes in the vast majority of schools. "Goodricke John" NGO of amateur astronomers tries to fill this gap by organizing practical lessons of astronomy in secondary schools. NGO is equipped with high quality portable amateur telescopes and organizes periodic mass observations of planets, Moon, star clusters, nebulae in Yerevan and in regions. In addition, mass observations of rare astronomical phenomena are organized, such as the transit of Venus and Mercury across the disk of the Sun. Being the only NGO of amateur astronomers, it has a goal to contribute to publicizing astronomical knowledge and to ensure the availability of astronomical equipment, telescopes also to those segments of the society who have no opportunity to deal with them, in particular, persons with disabilities, prisoners, persons with disabilities, prisoners, soldiers, children from orphanages, school children and others.

  17. Constructing Concept Schemes From Astronomical Telegrams Via Natural Language Clustering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, Matthew; Zhang, M.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Donalek, C.; Drake, A. J.; Mahabal, A.

    2012-01-01

    The rapidly emerging field of time domain astronomy is one of the most exciting and vibrant new research frontiers, ranging in scientific scope from studies of the Solar System to extreme relativistic astrophysics and cosmology. It is being enabled by a new generation of large synoptic digital sky surveys - LSST, PanStarrs, CRTS - that cover large areas of sky repeatedly, looking for transient objects and phenomena. One of the biggest challenges facing these is the automated classification of transient events, a process that needs machine-processible astronomical knowledge. Semantic technologies enable the formal representation of concepts and relations within a particular domain. ATELs (http://www.astronomerstelegram.org) are a commonly-used means for reporting and commenting upon new astronomical observations of transient sources (supernovae, stellar outbursts, blazar flares, etc). However, they are loose and unstructured and employ scientific natural language for description: this makes automated processing of them - a necessity within the next decade with petascale data rates - a challenge. Nevertheless they represent a potentially rich corpus of information that could lead to new and valuable insights into transient phenomena. This project lies in the cutting-edge field of astrosemantics, a branch of astroinformatics, which applies semantic technologies to astronomy. The ATELs have been used to develop an appropriate concept scheme - a representation of the information they contain - for transient astronomy using hierarchical clustering of processed natural language. This allows us to automatically organize ATELs based on the vocabulary used. We conclude that we can use simple algorithms to process and extract meaning from astronomical textual data.

  18. A 2.5m astronomical telescope project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phaichith, Oudomsanith

    2008-07-01

    The paper reports a recently started project for a 2,5 meter diameter robotic telescope dedicated to astronomy and education for the University of Moscow's Sternberg Institute. As a prime contractor Sagem Defense Securite's REOSC department will take on the program design as well as the production of the optical components. The project includes the Alt-Az mount, the dome and its cooling and air stabilization system, the weather station, the high-resolution camera and realization, transport and installation on-site at the Kislovodsk solar station located in the Caucasus mountains as well as the initial training for the operators. The telescope will provide a wide field of view of 40 arcmin at the Cassegrain F/8 focus. An escapable and rotating tertiary mirror will allow to direct the light to the two Nasmyth foci and two student ports located at 90° from the Nasmyth foci. A 4k x 4k CCD camera cryogenically cooled to 140 K will be provided as a first light camera. All will be delivered by end 2009. Remotely controlled via the internet, the telescope will allow Russia to train doctors in astronomy, participate in international research projects and draw up the future specifications of a larger and more advanced telescope.

  19. Astronomers as Software Developers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pildis, Rachel A.

    2016-01-01

    Astronomers know that their research requires writing, adapting, and documenting computer software. Furthermore, they often have to learn new computer languages and figure out how existing programs work without much documentation or guidance and with extreme time pressure. These are all skills that can lead to a software development job, but recruiters and employers probably won't know that. I will discuss all the highly useful experience that astronomers may not know that they already have, and how to explain that knowledge to others when looking for non-academic software positions. I will also talk about some of the pitfalls I have run into while interviewing for jobs and working as a developer, and encourage you to embrace the curiosity employers might have about your non-standard background.

  20. Mingantu, 18th-Century Mongol Astronomer and Radioheliograph Namesake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasachoff, Jay M.

    2013-01-01

    The 18th-century Mongol astronomer Mingantu (1692-1765) has been honored with a city named after him and a nearby solar telescope array. During the IAU/Beijing, my wife and I went to the new Chinese solar radioheliograph, the Mingantu Observing Station, in Inner Mongolia, ~400 km northwest of Beijing, a project of the National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences. It currently contains 40 dishes each 4.5 m across, with a correlator from Beijing. Within a year, 60 2-m dishes will be added. We passed by the 12-century ruins of Xanadu (about 20 km north of Zhangbei) about halfway. The radioheliograph is in a plane about 1 km across, forming a three-armed spiral for interferometric solar mapping, something colleagues and I had carried out with the Jansky Very Large Array, taking advantage of the lunar occultation before annularity at the 20 May 2012 solar eclipse. In the central square of Mingantu city, a statue ~10-m high of the Mongol astronomer Mingantu appears. Its base bears a plaque ~1-m high of IAU Minor Planet Circular MPC 45750 announcing the naming in 2002 of asteroid 28242 Mingantu, discovered at a Chinese observatory in 1999. Mingantu carried out orbital calculations, mapping, mathematical work on infinite series, and other scientific research. He is honored by a modern museum behind the statue. The museum's first 40% describes Mingantu and his work, and is followed by some artifacts of the region from thousands of years ago. The final, large room contains a two-meter-square scale model of the radioheliograph, flat-screen televisions running Solar Dynamics Observatory and other contemporary visualizations, orreries and other objects, and large transparencies of NASA and other astronomical imagery. See my post at http://www.skyandtelescope.com/community/skyblog/newsblog/ specfically Astro-Sightseeing_in_Inner_Mongolia-167712965.html. We thank Yihua Yan for arranging the visit and Wang Wei (both NAOC) for accompanying us. My solar research

  1. The Most Productive Years of Average Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abt, Helmut A.

    2017-11-01

    We learned previously that geniuses and outstanding scientists have peak productivities in their 30s but produce little late in life. This time we consider average astronomers who have completed their careers (25 American Astronomical Society members who died recently) and found that they peak in their mid 40s and did half of their life's important output after age 50.

  2. Aristotle University Astronomical Station at Mt. Holomon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avdellidou, C.; Ioannidis, P.; Kouroubatzakis, K.; Nitsos, A.; Vakoulis, J.; Seiradakis, J. H.

    2012-01-01

    The Aristotle University Astronomical Station was established seven years ago in order to fulfill the educational needs of its students. Astronomical observations are undertaken using three fully equipped small telescopes. Some interesting results are presented below, including the study of asteroids and flare stars, the detection of optical emission from supernovae remnants and follow up observations in extra solar planets.

  3. The Quito Astronomical Instruments Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopez, Ericsson

    The Quito Astronomical Observatory was build in the 1873s thanks to the generous sponsoring of the president of the Republic of Ecuador Dr. Gabriel García Moreno who desire was to build a long-lasting monument to Ecuadorian science . Thanks to the collaboration of father J. B. Menten one of the leading german astronomer the President' s dream came true. The Observatory with its splendid buildings was in fact equipped with a series of very important instruments such as the 30-cm Mertz refractor a large Molteni meridian instrument and a Bamber of 10 cm. Other instruments were subsequently added in the course of the 20th century. Recently we have performed a detailed inventory of all the historical instruments still preserved at the Observatory. This paper is dedicated to briefly trace the history of the Quito Observatory and describe its most characteristic instruments. Moreover it is presented the work done for preserving this important scientific heritage and discuss some of the typical problems that the researchers the students amateur astronomers and the public find in a still active scientific institution in a developing country.

  4. Ancient Maya astronomical tables from Xultun, Guatemala.

    PubMed

    Saturno, William A; Stuart, David; Aveni, Anthony F; Rossi, Franco

    2012-05-11

    Maya astronomical tables are recognized in bark-paper books from the Late Postclassic period (1300 to 1521 C.E.), but Classic period (200 to 900 C.E.) precursors have not been found. In 2011, a small painted room was excavated at the extensive ancient Maya ruins of Xultun, Guatemala, dating to the early 9th century C.E. The walls and ceiling of the room are painted with several human figures. Two walls also display a large number of delicate black, red, and incised hieroglyphs. Many of these hieroglyphs are calendrical in nature and relate astronomical computations, including at least two tables concerning the movement of the Moon, and perhaps Mars and Venus. These apparently represent early astronomical tables and may shed light on the later books.

  5. The Galway astronomical Stokes polarimeter: optical development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collins, P.; Redfern, M.; Shearer, A.; Sheehan, B.

    2010-06-01

    The acquisition time of astronomical polarimeters has in the past been restricted to by the use of polarimeters utilizing modulated or rotating components [1]. If the polarisation state being measured is changing in the order of nanoseconds, how does one measure this? The Galway Astronomical Stokes Polarimeter (GASP) is an instantaneous full Stokes Division Of Amplitude Polarimeter (DOAP) that has been developed for astronomical imaging polarimetry. It also uses just one camera thus restricting the acquisition time to photon statistics. Following the work of Compain and Drévillon [2], the main component - the Retarding Beam-Splitter, was redesigned and enhanced for imaging use. We present how the polarization and imaging optics were developed to create a broadband imaging instantaneous polarimeter. unknown author type, collab

  6. Astronomers Detect Powerful Bursting Radio Source Discovery Points to New Class of Astronomical Objects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-03-01

    transients has been very exciting for our students,” Hyman added. Participating in this research program has inspired at least two of Hyman?s students — Jennifer Neureuther and Mariana Lazarova — to pursue graduate studies in astronomy. This project was supported at Sweet Briar College by funding from Research Corporation and the Jeffress Foundation. Basic research in radio astronomy at NRL is supported by the Office of Naval Research. Further Research Hyman and his NRL colleagues plan to continue monitoring the Galactic center and search for the source again with the VLA and other X-ray and radio telescopes. They are also developing (with Dr. Kent Wood of NRL) a model that attempts to account for the radio bursts as a new type of outburst from a class of sources known as “magnetars.” NRL is also contributing to an effort to build the world’s largest and most sensitive low-frequency telescope, called the Long Wavelength Array (LWA), which may revolutionize future searches for other radio transient sources. Current plans call for the LWA, which is being developed by the University of New Mexico-led Southwest Consortium, to be sited in New Mexico, not far from the VLA. “One of the key advantages of observing at long radio wavelengths,” explained NRL astronomer, Dr. Namir Kassim, “is that the field-of-view is so large that a single observation can efficiently detect transient phenomena over a large region.” “When completed, the LWA may uncover hundreds of previously unknown radio transients, some of which may be examples of Jupiter-like planets orbiting other stars,” Kassim added. Jupiter is the most famous example of a nearby radio transient. About Sweet Briar College Sweet Briar College is consistently ranked among the nation’s top liberal arts colleges.ÿ Founded in 1901 as an independent undergraduate college for women, Sweet Briar continues its commitment to the education of women, offering a full range of liberal arts majors, including subjects

  7. "Movie Star" Acting Strangely, Radio Astronomers Find

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1999-01-01

    Astronomers have used the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope to make the first-ever time-lapse "movie" showing details of gas motions around a star other than our Sun. The study, the largest observational project yet undertaken using Very Long Baseline Interferometry, has produced surprising results that indicate scientists do not fully understand stellar atmospheres. The "movie" shows that the atmosphere of a pulsating star more than 1,000 light-years away continues to expand during a part of the star's pulsation period in which astronomers expected it to start contracting. Philip Diamond and Athol Kemball, of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Socorro, New Mexico, announced their findings at the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Austin, TX, today. "The continued expansion we're seeing contradicts current theoretical models for how these stars work," Diamond said. "The models have assumed spherical symmetry in the star's atmosphere, and our movie shows that this is not the case. Such models suggest that a shock wave passes outward from the star. Once it's passed, then the atmosphere should begin to contract because of the star's gravity. We've long passed that point and the contraction has not begun." The time-lapse images show that the gas motions are not uniform around the star. Most of the motion is that of gas moving directly outward from the star's surface. However, in about one-fourth of the ring, there are peculiar motions that do not fit this pattern. The scientists speculate that the rate of mass loss may not be the same from all parts of the star's surface. "A similar star behaved as predicted when studied a few years ago, so we're left to wonder what's different about this one," Diamond said. "Right now, we think that different rates of mass loss in the two stars may be the cause of the difference. This star is losing mass at 100 times the rate of the star in the earlier study." "This

  8. Astronomers Discover Spectacular Structure in Distant Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1999-01-01

    galaxy clusters. "The new structures that we found in M87 show that the story is much more complicated," Eilek said. "What we know about radio jets suggests that the energy being pumped into this region from the galaxy's central black hole exceeds the energy being lost in the X-ray emission. This system is more like a heating flow than a cooling flow. We're going to have to revise our ideas about the physics of what's going on in regions like this." M87, discovered by the French astronomer Charles Messier in 1781, is the strongest radio-emitting object in the constellation Virgo. Its jet was described by Lick Observatory astronomer Heber Curtis in 1918 as "a curious straight ray ... apparently connected with the nucleus by a thin line of matter." In 1954, Walter Baade reported that the jet's light is strongly polarized. M87's X-ray emission was discovered in 1966. M87 is the largest of the thousands of galaxies in the Virgo Cluster. The Local Group of galaxies, of which our own Milky Way is one, is part of the Virgo Cluster's outskirts. The galaxy's radio emissions first were observed by Australian astronomers in 1947, but the radio telescopes of that time were unable to discern much detail. They could, however, show that there is a structure more than 100,000 light-years across. Subsequent radio images, particularly those made using the sharp radio "vision" of the VLA, were primarily aimed at studying the inner 10,000 light-years or so, and showed great detail in the galaxy's jet. Astronomers even have followed the motions of concentrations of material within the jet over time. These observations, however, did not show much about the larger structure that was seen by earlier radio astronomers, leaving its details largely a mystery. Radio Images of M87 at Vastly Different Size Scales The mystery was solved by using the VLA to observe at longer radio wavelengths, thus revealing larger-scale structures. The processing speeds of modern computers and recently

  9. Brazilian Participations in the International Astronomical Search Collaboration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rojas, G. A.; Dalla-Costa, L. J.; Kalmus, A. T.; Kroth, E. C.; Matos, M. F.; Silva, A. L.; Silva, G. G.

    2014-10-01

    International Astronomical Search Collaboration (IASC) is an international educational project between universities, schools, observatories and research institutions. Its main objective is to enroll high school and college students in the monitoring and discovery of asteroids and Near Earth Objects (NEOs), especially Potentially Hazardous Asteroids. The methodology consists in the analysis of astronomical images obtained in several observatories in North America and Hawaii. The images are distributed throughout the school network and the results must be delivered in a 72-hour timeframe. Since 2010 Brazilian universities and schools have joined IASC, resulting in over a dozen new asteroids found (3 of them NEOs), and hundreds of measurements for already known asteroids. A major event in this collaboration was the All-Brazil Asteroid Search Campaign, which was conducted in September 2012. 2013 marks the fourth year of Brazilian participations in IASC, with one important milestone: the third straight appearance of a Brazilian institution in the Pan-STARRS campaign, which uses the PS1 telescope in Haleakala, Hawaii. We will present a summary of the overall results, as well as the latest news from 2013 campaigns. We will discuss the impact promoted by the past events, such as how the interest in astronomy changed before and after the campaigns, and it has helped the students to choose their future careers.

  10. The Role of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory in the Era of Big Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berriman, G. B.; Hanisch, R. J.; Lazio, T. J.

    2013-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is realizing global electronic integration of astronomy data. The rapid growth in the size and complexity of data sets is transforming the computing landscape in astronomy. One of the long-term goals of the U.S. VO project, the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO), is development of an information backbone that responds to this growth. Such a backbone will, when complete, provide innovative mechanisms for fast discovery of, and access to, massive data sets, and services that enable distributed storage, publication processing of large datasets. All these services will be built so that new projects can incorporate them as part of their data management and processing plans. Services under development to date include a general purpose indexing scheme for fast access to data sets, a cross-comparison engine that operate on catalogs of 1 billion records or more, and an interface for managing distributed data sets and connecting them to data discovery and analysis tools. The VAO advises projects on technology solutions for their data access and processing needs, and recently advised the Sagan Workshop on using cloud computing to support hands-on data analysis sessions for 150+ participants. Acknowledgements: The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is managed by the VAO, LLC, a non-profit company established as a partnership of the Associated Universities, Inc. and the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. The VAO is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

  11. The Astronomical Sanctuary of the Celtiberian Town of Segeda (Mará, Zaragoza, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burillo-Mozota, Francisco; Pérez-Gutiérrez, Manuel

    2015-05-01

    The Celtiberian town of Segeda (Mará, Zaragoza, Spain), with more than 45 ha of extension, was the largest pre-Roman settlement in the northern area of the Iberian Península (www.segeda.net). It was destroyed by the Roman army in 153 BC, a terminus ante quem for the construction of its peculiar sanctuary. The building was a large platform of about 312m2, bounded by two walls made up of large blocks of gypsum stone that converged in a strange angle of 120°. Its interior was paved and covered by sun-dried bricks, with no evidence of other outstanding structures. Its location, outside the city, next to the rampart and over a topographically prominent point, provided a privileged position because of the view it offered over its environment. The archaeoastronomical study started from a topographical survey by means of a topographic total station, complemented with a 360° photographic recording of the visible landscape and a measuring of the astronomical orientations. Several alignments of the platform with prominent points of the environment have been identified, arranged with the sunset at the summer solstice and the equinoxes. One of the sides of the structure is oriented with Astronomical North and a second one with the Minor Lunar Standstill, corresponding to the Metonic cycle.

  12. Astronomers gossip about the (cosmic) neighborhood.

    PubMed

    Jayawardhana, R

    1994-09-09

    The Hague, Netherlands, last month welcomed 2000 astronomers from around the world for the 22nd General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union (IAU). From 15 to 27 August, they participated in symposia and discussions on topics ranging from the down-to-Earth issue of light and radio-frequency pollution to the creation of elements at the farthest reaches of time and space, in the big bang. Some of the most striking news, however, came in new findings from our galaxy and its immediate surroundings.

  13. Astronomers and the Media: What Reporters Expect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siedgfried, Tom; Witze, Alexandra

    2006-01-01

    Journalists writing about astronomy bring varying levels of knowledge to the task. Most rely on astronomers for help. To be most helpful, astronomers should familiarize themselves with the practices and needs of journalists and learn effective methods for presenting astronomy via news releases, interviews and news conferences. In all aspects of communicating with the media, the ability to express technical findings in plain language is essential.

  14. On the Astronomical Knowledge and Traditions of Aboriginal Australians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamacher, Duane W.

    2011-12-01

    Historian of science David Pingree defines science in a broad context as the process of systematically explaining perceived or imaginary phenomena. Although Westerners tend to think of science being restricted to Western culture, I argue in this thesis that astronomical scientific knowledge is found in Aboriginal traditions. Although research into the astronomical traditions of Aboriginal Australians stretches back for more than 150 years, it is relatively scant in the literature. We do know that the sun, moon, and night sky have been an important and inseparable component of the landscape to hundreds of Australian Aboriginal groups for thousands (perhaps tens-of-thousands) of years. The literature reveals that astronomical knowledge was used for time keeping, denoting seasonal change and the availability of food sources, navigation, and tidal prediction. It was also important for rituals and ceremonies, birth totems, marriage systems, cultural mnemonics, and folklore. Despite this, the field remains relatively unresearched considering the diversity of Aboriginal cultures and the length of time people have inhabited Australia (well over 40,000 years). Additionally, very little research investigating the nature and role of transient celestial phenomena has been conducted, leaving our understanding of Indigenous astronomical knowledge grossly incomplete. This thesis is an attempt to overcome this deficiency, with a specific focus on transient celestial phenomena. My research, situated in the field of cultural astronomy, draws from the sub-disciplines of archaeoastronomy, ethnoastronomy, historical astronomy, and geomythology. This approach incorporates the methodologies and theories of disciplines in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. This thesis, by publication, makes use of archaeological, ethnographic, and historical records, astronomical software packages, and geographic programs to better understand the ages of astronomical traditions and the

  15. Through Kazan ASPERA to Modern Projects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gusev, Alexander; Kitiashvili, Irina; Petrova, Natasha

    Now the European Union form the Sixth Framework Programme. One of its the objects of the EU Programme is opening national researches and training programmes. The Russian PhD students and young astronomers have business and financial difficulties in access to modern databases and astronomical projects and so they has not been included in European overview of priorities. Modern requirements to the organization of observant projects on powerful telescopes assumes painstaking scientific computer preparation of the application. A rigid competition for observation time assume preliminary computer modeling of target object for success of the application. Kazan AstroGeoPhysics Partnership

  16. Proceedings of the VI Serbian-Bulgarian Astronomical Conference, May 7 - 11 2008, Belgrade, Serbia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dimitrijević, M. S.; Tsvetkov, M.; Popović, L. C.; Golev, V.

    2009-07-01

    70 contributions. In these proceedings are 47 papers, 10 invited lectures, 12 contributed papers and 25 poster papers. Within the frame of cultural program in the library of Astronomical Observatory was organized a multimedia evening "Astronomy, Poetry and Art." Moderator was Andjelka Kovacevic. Poetry with cosmical inspiration was presented by Milan S. Dimitrijevic, Milcho Tsvetkov, Natasha Stanic, Tetyana Sergeeva, Jan Vondrak and Katya Tsvetkova with musical accompaniment by Zoran Simic and Edi Bon. Also a video presentation of paintings of Zoran Simic, inspired by the Universe accompanied by him by guitar was performed. An excursion to the excavations of the Roman colony Viminacium was organized for the participants. The Sixth Serbian-Bulgarian Astronomical Conference was fruitful and important for the further development of collaboration, common activities and planning of the joint scientific investigations and projects.

  17. High-School Student Discovers Strange Astronomical Object

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-09-01

    A West Virginia high-school student analyzing data from a giant radio telescope has discovered a new astronomical object -- a strange type of neutron star called a rotating radio transient. Lucas Bolyard, a sophomore at South Harrison High School in Clarksburg, WV, made the discovery while participating in a project in which students are trained to scrutinize data from the National Science Foundation's giant Robert C. Byrd Green The project, called the Pulsar Search Collaboratory (PSC), is a joint project of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and West Virginia University (WVU), funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. Bolyard made the discovery in March, after he already had studied more than 2,000 data plots from the GBT and found nothing. "I was home on a weekend and had nothing to do, so I decided to look at some more plots from the GBT," he said. "I saw a plot with a pulse, but there was a lot of radio interference, too. The pulse almost got dismissed as interference," he added. Nonetheless, he reported it, and it went on a list of candidates for West Virginia University astronomers Maura McLaughlin and Duncan Lorimer to re-examine, scheduling new observations of the region of sky from which the pulse came. Disappointingly, the follow-up observations showed nothing, indicating that the object was not a normal pulsar. However, the astronomers explained to Bolyard that his pulse still might have come from a rotating radio transient. Confirmation didn't come until July. Bolyard was at the NRAO's Green Bank Observatory with fellow PSC students. The night before, the group had been observing with the GBT in the wee hours, and all were very tired. Then Lorimer showed Bolyard a new plot of his pulse, reprocessed from raw data, indicating that it is real, not interference, and that Bolyard is likely the discoverer of one of only about 30 rotating radio transients known. Suddenly, Bolyard said, he wasn't tired anymore. "That news made me full

  18. High-performance compression of astronomical images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, Richard L.

    1993-01-01

    Astronomical images have some rather unusual characteristics that make many existing image compression techniques either ineffective or inapplicable. A typical image consists of a nearly flat background sprinkled with point sources and occasional extended sources. The images are often noisy, so that lossless compression does not work very well; furthermore, the images are usually subjected to stringent quantitative analysis, so any lossy compression method must be proven not to discard useful information, but must instead discard only the noise. Finally, the images can be extremely large. For example, the Space Telescope Science Institute has digitized photographic plates covering the entire sky, generating 1500 images each having 14000 x 14000 16-bit pixels. Several astronomical groups are now constructing cameras with mosaics of large CCD's (each 2048 x 2048 or larger); these instruments will be used in projects that generate data at a rate exceeding 100 MBytes every 5 minutes for many years. An effective technique for image compression may be based on the H-transform (Fritze et al. 1977). The method that we have developed can be used for either lossless or lossy compression. The digitized sky survey images can be compressed by at least a factor of 10 with no noticeable losses in the astrometric and photometric properties of the compressed images. The method has been designed to be computationally efficient: compression or decompression of a 512 x 512 image requires only 4 seconds on a Sun SPARCstation 1. The algorithm uses only integer arithmetic, so it is completely reversible in its lossless mode, and it could easily be implemented in hardware for space applications.

  19. The GBT Primos Program: 7 Years of Astronomical Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corby, Joanna F.; McGuire, Brett A.; Hollis, Mike; Lovas, Frank J.; Jewell, Philip; Remijan, Anthony

    2014-06-01

    The GBT PRebiotic Interstellar MOlecule Survey (PRIMOS) towards Sgr B2N is the deepest, most complete spectral line survey in the range of 300MHz - 49 GHz. PRIMOS enables astronomers, chemists, and biologists to test theories of molecular formation, the origins of organic chemistry and the molecular complexity and physical and kinematic structure of material in our Galaxy. To date, PRIMOS data have resulted in 14 refereed publications since 2007, demonstrating the power of centimeter wave spectroscopy for detecting new organic species and revealing the significance of non-LTE effects including maser amplification in the cm-wave spectra of organic molecules. The survey has additionally advertised molecular astrophysics in public lectures, summer undergraduate diversity programs, and high school student projects. While the GBT is the only telescope in the world capable of conducting the PRIMOS Survey, PRIMOS data couples with newly available broad-bandwidth telescopes including the Jansky Very Large Array and ALMA. Synergistic observations with ALMA will be necessary to fully characterize the spectra of molecular material and determine excitation mechanisms leading to observed line radiation. This presentation provides an overview of the PRIMOS program, highlights PRIMOS science, and describes how the entire astronomical community can obtain the data for their own research.

  20. Authentic Astronomical Discovery in Planetariums: Data-Driven Immersive Lectures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wyatt, Ryan Jason

    2018-01-01

    Planetariums are akin to “branch offices” for astronomy in major cities and other locations around the globe. With immersive, fulldome video technology, modern digital planetariums offer the opportunity to integrate authentic astronomical data into both pre-recorded shows and live lectures. At the California Academy of Sciences Morrison Planetarium, we host the monthly Benjamin Dean Astronomy Lecture Series, which features researchers describing their cutting-edge work to well-informed lay audiences. The Academy’s visualization studio and engineering teams work with researchers to visualize their data in both pre-rendered and real-time formats, and these visualizations are integrated into a variety of programs—including lectures! The assets are then made available to any other planetariums with similar software to support their programming. A lecturer can thus give the same immersive presentation to audiences in a variety of planetariums. The Academy has also collaborated with Chicago’s Adler Planetarium to bring Kavli Fulldome Lecture Series to San Francisco, and the two theaters have also linked together in live “domecasts” to share real-time content with audiences in both cities. These lecture series and other, similar projects suggest a bright future for astronomers to bring their research to the public in an immersive and visually compelling format.

  1. The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, M.

    2009-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute is a not-for-profit foundation located at a former NASA tracking station in the Pisgah National Forest in western North Carolina. PARI is celebrating its 10th year. During its ten years, PARI has developed and implemented innovative science education programs. The science education programs are hands-on experimentally based, mixing disciplines in astronomy, computer science, earth and atmospheric science, engineering, and multimedia. The basic tools for the educational programs include a 4.6-m radio telescope accessible via the Internet, a StarLab planetarium, the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA), a distributed computing online environment to classify stars called SCOPE, and remotely accessible optical telescopes. The PARI 200 acre campus has a 4.6-m, a 12-m and two 26-m radio telescopes, optical solar telescopes, a Polaris monitoring telescope, 0.4-m and 0.35-m optical research telescopes, and earth and atmospheric science instruments. PARI is also the home of APDA, a repository for astronomical photographic plate collections which will eventually be digitized and made available online. PARI has collaborated with visiting scientists who have developed their research with PARI telescopes and lab facilities. Current experiments include: the Dedicated Interferometer for Rapid Variability (Dennison et al. 2007, Astronomical and Astrophysical Transactions, 26, 557); the Plate Boundary Observatory operated by UNAVCO; the Clemson University Fabry-Perot Interferometers (Meriwether 2008, Journal of Geophysical Research, submitted) measuring high velocity winds and temperatures in the Thermosphere, and the Western Carolina University - PARI variable star program. Current status of the education and research programs and instruments will be presented. Also, development plans will be reviewed. Development plans include the greening of PARI with the installation of solar panels to power the optical telescopes, a new distance

  2. Uranus' largest moon Oberon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1986-01-01

    Uranus' outermost and largest moon, Oberon, is seen in this Voyager 2 image, obtained Jan. 22, 1986, from a distance of 2.77 million kilometers (1.72 million miles). The clear-filter image, shuttered by Voyager's narrow-angle camera, shows that Oberon displays several distinct highly reflective (high-albedo) patches with low-albedo centers. Some of the bright patches are suggestive of radial patterns that could represent impact craters excavated from an icy surface. On average, Oberon reflects about 20 percent of the incident sunlight. The moon is about 1,600 km (1,000 mi) in diameter; resolution of this image is 51 km (32 mi). It was taken two days before Voyager's closest approach to Oberon, at which point the spacecraft will be about 471,000 km (293,000 mi) away. The Voyager project is managed for NASA by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

  3. Coronagraph for astronomical imaging and spectrophotometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vilas, Faith; Smith, Bradford A.

    1987-01-01

    A coronagraph designed to minimize scattered light in astronomical observations caused by the structure of the primary mirror, secondary mirror, and secondary support structure of a Cassegrainian telescope is described. Direct (1:1) and reducing (2.7:1) imaging of astronomical fields are possible. High-quality images are produced. The coronagraph can be used with either a two-dimensional charge-coupled device or photographic film camera. The addition of transmission dispersing optics converts the coronagraph into a low-resolution spectrograph. The instrument is modular and portable for transport to different observatories.

  4. Project ASTRO NOVA brings Standard Based Astronomy to New Jersey Schools.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Veen, W.; Vinski, J.; Gallagher, A. C.

    2000-12-01

    Begun in 1998, Project ASTRO NOVA is hosted by the Planetarium at Raritan Valley Community College in Somerville, New Jersey. It is part of a National Network of eleven Project ASTRO sites created by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific with financial support of the National Science Foundation (see other papers at this meeting). Our goal is to bring hands-on inquiry based astronomy into classrooms and help teachers meet the New Jersey Science Standards. New Jersey mandates the teaching of astronomy in grades K-12 and statewide assessment takes place in grades 4 and 8. Capitalizing on New Jersey's record number of amateur astronomers per capita our site has trained 75 astronomers (including 21 professional astronomers) over the last three years. Before the start of each school year a new group of astronomers is trained together with their partner teacher(s) in the use of hands-on and age-appropriate astronomy activities that support the New Jersey Science Standards. Astronomers adopt a classroom and visit the same students at least four times during the year. Currently 53 astronomers are participating during the 2000-2001 school year. The program in New Jersey targets teachers in grades 3-9. A total of 114 teachers have been training at our annual workshops and 75 of them are participating during the 2000-2001 school year. Satisfaction with the program has been high with students, teachers and astronomers. When students meet scientists as role models and experience that doing science can be a lot of fun they become more interested. At the same time teachers are re-energized and gain a better understanding of how to teach science and astronomy. Finally, astronomers have the satisfaction of making a real difference in the lives of thousands of children, gain a better understanding of the issues in K-12 education and learn new teaching strategies for use in their college classes or astronomy clubs. In general we find that students and teachers are becoming better

  5. Space Shuttle Project

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1990-12-02

    Space Shuttle Columbia (STS-35) blasts off into a dark Florida sky. Columbia's payload included the ASTRO project which was designed to obtain ultraviolet (UV) data on astronomical objects using a UV telescope flying on Spacelab.

  6. Spherical Panorama Visualization of Astronomical Data with Blender and Python

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kent, Brian R.

    2016-06-01

    We describe methodology to generate 360 degree spherical panoramas of both 2D and 3D data. The techniques apply to a variety of astronomical data types - all sky maps, 2D and 3D catalogs as well as planetary surface maps. The results can be viewed in a desktop browser or interactively with a mobile phone or tablet. Static displays or panoramic video renderings of the data can be produced. We review the Python code and usage of the 3D Blender software for projecting maps onto 3D surfaces and the various tools for distributing visualizations.

  7. The associate principal astronomer telescope operations model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drummond, Mark; Bresina, John; Swanson, Keith; Edgington, Will; Henry, Greg

    1994-01-01

    This paper outlines a new telescope operations model that is intended to achieve low operating costs with high operating efficiency and high scientific productivity. The model is based on the existing Principal Astronomer approach used in conjunction with ATIS, a language for commanding remotely located automatic telescopes. This paper introduces the notion of an Associate Principal Astronomer, or APA. At the heart of the APA is automatic observation loading and scheduling software, and it is this software that is expected to help achieve efficient and productive telescope operations. The purpose of the APA system is to make it possible for astronomers to submit observation requests to and obtain resulting data from remote automatic telescopes, via the Internet, in a highly-automated way that minimizes human interaction with the system and maximizes the scientific return from observing time.

  8. Astronomical Microdensitometry Conference

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klinglesmith, D. A. (Editor)

    1984-01-01

    The status of the current microdensitometers used for digitizing astronomical imagery is discussed. The tests and improvements that have and can be made to the Photometric Data System PDS microdensitometer are examined. The various types of microdensitometers that currently exist in the world are investigated. Papers are presented on the future needs and the data processing problems associated with digitizing large images.

  9. The Five-Hundred Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (fast) Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nan, Rendong; Li, Di; Jin, Chengjin; Wang, Qiming; Zhu, Lichun; Zhu, Wenbai; Zhang, Haiyan; Yue, Youling; Qian, Lei

    Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST) is a Chinese mega-science project to build the largest single dish radio telescope in the world. Its innovative engineering concept and design pave a new road to realize a huge single dish in the most effective way. FAST also represents Chinese contribution in the international efforts to build the square kilometer array (SKA). Being the most sensitive single dish radio telescope, FAST will enable astronomers to jump-start many science goals, such as surveying the neutral hydrogen in the Milky Way and other galaxies, detecting faint pulsars, looking for the first shining stars, hearing the possible signals from other civilizations, etc. The idea of sitting a large spherical dish in a karst depression is rooted in Arecibo telescope. FAST is an Arecibo-type antenna with three outstanding aspects: the karst depression used as the site, which is large to host the 500-meter telescope and deep to allow a zenith angle of 40 degrees; the active main reflector correcting for spherical aberration on the ground to achieve a full polarization and a wide band without involving complex feed systems; and the light-weight feed cabin driven by cables and servomechanism plus a parallel robot as a secondary adjustable system to move with high precision. The feasibility studies for FAST have been carried out for 14 years, supported by Chinese and world astronomical communities. Funding for FAST has been approved by the National Development and Reform Commission in July of 2007 with a capital budget ~ 700 million RMB. The project time is 5.5 years from the commencement of work in March of 2011 and the first light is expected to be in 2016. This review intends to introduce the project of FAST with emphasis on the recent progress since 2006. In this paper, the subsystems of FAST are described in modest details followed by discussions of the fundamental science goals and examples of early science projects.

  10. Developing an Undergraduate Astronomical Research Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genet, R. M.

    2007-05-01

    Time-series astronomical photometry is an area of scientific research well suited to amateurs and undergraduates, and their backyard and campus observatories. I describe two past one-semester community college research programs, one six year ago and one last fall (2006), as well as a program planned for this coming fall (2007). The 2001 program, a course at Central Arizona College, utilized a robotic telescope at the Fairborn Observatory. Results were presented at the 200th meeting of the American Astronomical Society. This past fall, three students, in a 17-week, one-semester course at Cuesta College, were able to plan a research program, make several thousand CCD photometric observations, reduce and analyze their data, write up their results and, on the last day of class, send their paper off to a refereed journal, the JAAVSO. A course is being offered this coming fall (2007) that will involve about a dozen students (including high school students), several local amateur astronomers, and at least three CCD- equipped semi-automatic telescopes. Potential solutions to "scaling up" challenges created by increased class size are discussed.

  11. Elizabeth Brown (1830-1899), solar astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Creese, M.

    1998-08-01

    Were it not for the fact that she was a woman, Elizabeth Brown might well be thought of as a fairly typical nineteenth-century British amateur astronomer. She has a place, although a relatively modest one, in the distinguished group of people who, with their own fortunes, carried out much of the astronomical research being done in the country at a time before extensive government support was forthcoming for the work.1 Her career in fact follows a pattern common to several of the nineteenth-century men astronomers in that her full productive period came only after she was freed from her primary responsibilities; she did not have to amass the necessary financial resources as did many of the men,2 but she had the time-consuming responsibility, not unusual for a Victorian woman, of caring for a parent through a lengthy old age. Only after her father died at the age of ninety-one, did Elizabeth, then in her early fifties, begin her sixteen years of remarkable public activity in astronomy.

  12. Technologies for the fabrication of the E-ELT mirrors within the T-REX project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pareschi, G.; Aliverti, M.; Bianco, A.; Basso, S.; Citterio, O.; Civitani, M.; Ghigo, M.; Pariani, G.; Sironi, G.; Riva, M.; Vecchi, G.; Zerbi, F.

    With its primary mirror with 39 m of diameter, the E-ELT will be the largest optical/near-infrared telescope in the world and will gather 13 times more light than the largest optical telescopes existing today. The different optical sub-systems of E-ELT, including the primary mirror based on hundreds of reflecting tiles assembled together, represent key components for the implementation of the telescopes. A huge amount of aspherical reflecting elements have to be produced with "state of the art" figuring and polishing technologies and measured with proper metrological equipments. In the past couple of years, in the context of the T-REX project, a specific development program was carried out at the Brera Astronomical Observatory-INAF in order to address a numbers of technology aspects related to the fabrication of the E-ELT mirrors. In this paper we give a short overview of the activities that have been carried out. Other papers in this volume report on specific activities that have pursed within such a development program. skip=8pt

  13. A Graduate Seminar on Astronomical Citizenship at Indiana University

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pilachowski, Catherine A.; Durisen, Richard H.

    A series of graduate seminars on the activities of professional astronomers in the astronomical community was held at Indiana University during the spring 2002 semester. The seminars covered such topics as the role of professional societies, scholarly publishing, teaching, public outreach, the NSF and NASA, and the federal research budget. The goal of the series was first to inform our students about the many aspects of being a professional astronomer that are not covered in their normal coursework, and second, to foster in our students an appreciation of the value of service to the community.

  14. The challengers of an astronomer being a journalist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Podorvanyuk, N.

    2015-03-01

    As the weakness of russian astronomers in observational astronomy became chronic Russia should enter European Southern Observatory. But the Russian government is still not providing any financing of the entrance of Russia to ESO. The author states this situation as an example of his experience of work as an astronomer and as a journalist at the same time.

  15. Astronomical Optical Interferometry. I. Methods and Instrumentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jankov, S.

    2010-12-01

    Previous decade has seen an achievement of large interferometric projects including 8-10m telescopes and 100m class baselines. Modern computer and control technology has enabled the interferometric combination of light from separate telescopes also in the visible and infrared regimes. Imaging with milli-arcsecond (mas) resolution and astrometry with micro-arcsecond (muas) precision have thus become reality. Here, I review the methods and instrumentation corresponding to the current state in the field of astronomical optical interferometry. First, this review summarizes the development from the pioneering works of Fizeau and Michelson. Next, the fundamental observables are described, followed by the discussion of the basic design principles of modern interferometers. The basic interferometric techniques such as speckle and aperture masking interferometry, aperture synthesis and nulling interferometry are disscused as well. Using the experience of past and existing facilities to illustrate important points, I consider particularly the new generation of large interferometers that has been recently commissioned (most notably, the CHARA, Keck, VLT and LBT Interferometers). Finally, I discuss the longer-term future of optical interferometry, including the possibilities of new large-scale ground-based projects and prospects for space interferometry.

  16. Astronomical Symbolism in Bronze-Age and Iron-Age Rock Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García Quintela, Marco V.; Santos-Estévez, Manuel

    The best-known rock art from Late Prehistory is found in Scandinavia, the Alps, and Galicia, North West Spain. In this chapter, we explore its association with astronomical symbolism from three perspectives: the representation of heavenly bodies, the visibility conditions of the carvings, and their position on astronomical alignments. We also consider temporal variables and the impact of aspects of Indo-European ideology on the construction of the representations in their astronomical relationships.

  17. Filling the Astronomical Void - A Visual Medium for a Visual Subject

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryan, J.

    1996-12-01

    Astronomy is fundamentally a visual subject. The modern science of astronomy has at its foundation the ancient art of observing the sky visually. The visual elements of astronomy are arguably the most important. Every person in the entire world is affected by visually-observed astronomical phenomena such as the seasonal variations in daylight. However, misconceptions abound and the average person cannot recognize the simple signs in the sky that point to the direction, the hour and the season. Educators and astronomy popularizers widely lament that astronomy is not appreciated in our society. Yet, there is a remarkable dearth of popular literature for teaching the visual elements of astronomy. This is what I refer to as *the astronomical void.* Typical works use illustrations sparsely, relying most heavily on text-based descriptions of the visual astronomical phenomena. Such works leave significant inferential gaps to the inexperienced reader, who is unequipped for making astronomical observations. Thus, the astronomical void remains unfilled by much of the currently available literature. I therefore propose the introduction of a visually-oriented medium for teaching the visual elements of Astronomy. To this end, I have prepared a series of astronomy "comic strips" that are intended to fill the astronomical void. By giving the illustrations the central place, the comic strip medium permits the depiction of motion and other sequential activity, thus effectively representing astronomical phenomena. In addition to the practical advantages, the comic strip is a "user friendly" medium that is inviting and entertaining to a reader. At the present time, I am distributing a monthly comic strip entitled *Starman*, which appears in the newsletters of over 120 local astronomy organizations and on the web at http://www.cyberdrive.net/ starman. I hope to eventually publish a series of full-length books and believe that astronomical comic strips will help expand the perimeter of

  18. From Casual Stargazer to Amateur Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eagle, Dave

    The word amateur stems from the French word Amour, meaning "Lover Of". And there is a whole army of amateur astronomers around the world who just love doing astronomy. They don't get paid for the privilege of experiencing the sky in all its glory, but by making detailed observations they do make a very important contribution towards the Science. These observations are especially useful when organized as a collective effort. Citizen science has really taken off in the last few years and the GAIA project will soon be producing so much data, that the professionals just will not have enough manpower to tackle all the data. They will rely on amateurs sitting on their computers at home. But it is under a dark sky that astronomy really comes alive. The fact that you have picked up this book, must mean that you are interested in taking the hobby a step forward.

  19. Astronomical publications of Melbourne Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andropoulos, Jenny Ioanna

    2014-05-01

    During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, four well-equipped government observatories were maintained in Australia - in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth. These institutions conducted astronomical observations, often in the course of providing a local time service, and they also collected and collated meteorological data. As well, some of these observatories were involved at times in geodetic surveying, geomagnetic recording, gravity measurements, seismology, tide recording and physical standards, so the term "observatory" was being used in a rather broad sense! Despite the international renown that once applied to Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories, relatively little has been written by modern-day scholars about astronomical activities at these observatories. This research is intended to rectify this situation to some extent by gathering, cataloguing and analysing the published astronomical output of the two Observatories to see what contributions they made to science and society. It also compares their contributions with those of Sydney, Adelaide and Perth Observatories. Overall, Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories produced a prodigious amount of material on astronomy in scientific and technical journals, in reports and in newspapers. The other observatories more or less did likewise, so no observatory of those studied markedly outperformed the others in the long term, especially when account is taken of their relative resourcing in staff and equipment.

  20. ``Route of astronomical observatories'' project: Classical observatories from the Renaissance to the rise of astrophysics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfschmidt, Gudrun

    2016-10-01

    Observatories offer a good possibility for serial transnational applications. For example one can choose groups like baroque or neoclassical observatories, solar physics observatories or a group of observatories equipped with the same kind of instruments or made by famous firms. I will discuss what has been achieved and show examples, like the route of astronomical observatories, the transition from classical astronomy to modern astrophysics. I will also discuss why the implementation of the World Heritage & Astronomy initiative is difficult and why there are problems to nominate observatories for election in the national tentative lists.

  1. Division XII / Commission 46 / Program Group Exchnage of Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Percy, John R.; Leung, Kam-Ching; Tolbert, Charles R.

    The Commission 46 Program Group Exchange of Astronomers (PG-EA) provides travel grants to astronomers and advanced students for research or study trips of at least three months duration. Highest priority is given to applicants from developing countries whose visits will benefit them, their institution and country, and the institution visited. This program, if used strategically, has the potential to support other Commission 46 programs such as Teaching for Astronomical Development (PG-TAD) and World Wide Development of Astronomy (PG-WWDA). Complete information about the program, and the application procedure, can be found at .

  2. VEGAS: VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bussa, Srikanth; VEGAS Development Team

    2012-01-01

    The National Science Foundation Advanced Technologies and Instrumentation (NSF-ATI) program is funding a new spectrometer backend for the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). This spectrometer is being built by the CICADA collaboration - collaboration between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and the Center for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research (CASPER) at the University of California Berkeley.The backend is named as VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer (VEGAS) and will replace the capabilities of the existing spectrometers. This backend supports data processing from focal plane array systems. The spectrometer will be capable of processing up to 1.25 GHz bandwidth from 8 dual polarized beams or a bandwidth up to 10 GHz from a dual polarized beam.The spectrometer will be using 8-bit analog to digital converters (ADC), which gives a better dynamic range than existing GBT spectrometers. There will be 8 tunable digital sub-bands within the 1.25 GHz bandwidth, which will enhance the capability of simultaneous observation of multiple spectral transitions. The maximum spectral dump rate to disk will be about 0.5 msec. The vastly enhanced backend capabilities will support several science projects with the GBT. The projects include mapping temperature and density structure of molecular clouds; searches for organic molecules in the interstellar medium; determination of the fundamental constants of our evolving Universe; red-shifted spectral features from galaxies across cosmic time and survey for pulsars in the extreme gravitational environment of the Galactic Center.

  3. The la Plata Astronomical Data Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marraco, H. G.

    1990-11-01

    RESUMEN. El Centro de Datos Astron6micos tiene su sede en la Facuitad de Ciencias Astron6micas y Geofisicas d la Universidad Nacional de La Plata y funciona por convenio entre esta facultad y el Centre des Stellaires de la Universite' Louis Pasteur en Estrasburgo (CDS), Francia. La finalidad de este centro es la de proveer a los astr6nomos del area con copias de los alrededor de 500 acumulados y/o preparados por el CDS a la vez que promover la producci6n y/o acumulaci6n de en el rea. Para la realizaci6n de esta tarea se cuenta con el apoyo del Centro Superior para el Procesamiento de la Informaci6n (CESPI) de la UNLP cuyos equipos se describen. Las tareas que se estan realizando incluyen la distribuci6n de SIMBAD a los astr6nomos argentinos y se efectuan ensayos de distribuci6n en linea de CD-ROM TEST DISK del Astronomical Data Center (ADC) de la NASA que contiene los 31 mas solicitados por los astr6nomos de todo el mundo. ABSTRACl The La Plata Astronomical Data Center operates by an agreement between the Facultad de Ciencias Astron6micas y Geofisicas at La Plata University and the Centre des Donnees Stellaires of Louis Pasteur University at Strasbourg (CDS), France. The purpose of the Center is to provide to the area astronomers with copies of the catalogs they need amongst those stored and/or prepared at CDS. At the same time the center will act of the astronomical data produced within its area. K words: DATA ANALYSIS

  4. Starstuff.org - Bridging the Cosmos Between Astronomers and the Public

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamm, J. J.; Howell, D. A.

    1998-12-01

    Starstuff.org is a new web site featuring articles written by astronomers to promote general interest in astronomy and communicate directly the ideas and excitement that make astronomy popular with the public. Traditional media are limited as an outreach tool, because journalists and publishers decide which topics are newsworthy, and many facts are lost in the translation. Starstuff.org circumvents these problems by removing the middleman and allowing astronomers to communicate with the public directly. Readers can be assured of getting accurate information through the firsthand accounts of leaders in the field. This format also allows for the discussion of astronomical concepts and issues that may be important to astronomers but not considered newsworthy by journalists. The unique power of the computers and the internet as instructive tools is harnessed with features such as virtual reality (VRML) explorations of 3D concepts, interactive equations, animations to explain dynamic events, and hyperlinks to emphasize the connections between concepts and direct the reader to further resources. Topics may be explored in more creative ways and in greater depth than in traditional media, and astronomers can reach a wider audience than they could in a traditional lecture. The site's infrastructure, automated processing, and professional programmer/digital artist free contributors from having to know HTML, allowing them to concentrate on creative ways of presenting ideas. Any astronomer with email is encouraged to contribute.

  5. Urban Middle-School Science Teachers Beliefs about the Influence of Their Astronomer-Educator Partnerships on Students' Astronomy Learner Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miranda, Rommel J.

    2012-01-01

    This qualitative study investigates the extent to which urban middle-school science teachers' beliefs about their students' astronomy learner characteristics were influenced by their partnership with an astronomer in their classroom. Twelve urban middle-school science teachers were interviewed after their participation in Project ASTRO during the…

  6. Misconceptions of Astronomical Distances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Brian W.; Brewer, William F.

    2010-01-01

    Previous empirical studies using multiple-choice procedures have suggested that there are misconceptions about the scale of astronomical distances. The present study provides a quantitative estimate of the nature of this misconception among US university students by asking them, in an open-ended response format, to make estimates of the distances…

  7. ASURV: Astronomical SURVival Statistics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feigelson, E. D.; Nelson, P. I.; Isobe, T.; LaValley, M.

    2014-06-01

    ASURV (Astronomical SURVival Statistics) provides astronomy survival analysis for right- and left-censored data including the maximum-likelihood Kaplan-Meier estimator and several univariate two-sample tests, bivariate correlation measures, and linear regressions. ASURV is written in FORTRAN 77, and is stand-alone and does not call any specialized libraries.

  8. The Research Tools of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.; Berriman, G. B.; Lazio, T. J.; Project, VAO

    2013-01-01

    Astronomy is being transformed by the vast quantities of data, models, and simulations that are becoming available to astronomers at an ever-accelerating rate. The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) has been funded to provide an operational facility that is intended to be a resource for discovery and access of data, and to provide science services that use these data. Over the course of the past year, the VAO has been developing and releasing for community use five science tools: 1) "Iris", for dynamically building and analyzing spectral energy distributions, 2) a web-based data discovery tool that allows astronomers to identify and retrieve catalog, image, and spectral data on sources of interest, 3) a scalable cross-comparison service that allows astronomers to conduct pair-wise positional matches between very large catalogs stored remotely as well as between remote and local catalogs, 4) time series tools that allow astronomers to compute periodograms of the public data held at the NASA Star and Exoplanet Database (NStED) and the Harvard Time Series Center, and 5) A VO-aware release of the Image Reduction and Analysis Facility (IRAF) that provides transparent access to VO-available data collections and is SAMP-enabled, so that IRAF users can easily use tools such as Aladin and Topcat in conjuction with IRAF tasks. Additional VAO services will be built to make it easy for researchers to provide access to their data in VO-compliant ways, to build VO-enabled custom applications in Python, and to respond generally to the growing size and complexity of astronomy data. Acknowledgements: The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is managed by the VAO, LLC, a non-profit company established as a partnership of the Associated Universities, Inc. and the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. The VAO is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

  9. Star Ware: The Amateur Astronomer's Guide to Choosing, Buying, and Using Telescopes and Accessories, 3rd Edition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrington, Philip S.

    2002-05-01

    Praise for the Second Edition of Star Ware "Star Ware is still a tour de force that any experienced amateur will find invaluable, and which hardware-minded beginners will thoroughly enjoy." -Robert Burnham, Sky & Telescope magazine "Star Ware condenses between two covers what would normally take a telescope buyer many months to accumulate." -John Shibley, Astronomy magazine Now more than ever, the backyard astronomer has a dazzling array of choices when it comes to telescope shopping-which can make choosing just the right sky-watching equipment a formidable challenge. In this revised and updated edition of Star Ware, the essential guide to buying astronomical equipment, award-winning astronomy writer Philip Harrington does the work for you, analyzing and exploring today's astronomy market and offering point-by-point comparisons of everything you need. Whether you're an experienced amateur astronomer or just getting started, Star Ware, Third Edition will prepare you to explore the farthest reaches of space with: Extensive, expanded reviews of leading models and accessories, including dozens of new products, to help you buy smart

  10. A clear, step-by-step guide to all aspects of purchasing everything from telescopes and binoculars to filters, mounts, lenses, cameras, film, star charts, guides and references, and much more Eleven new do-it-yourself projects for making unique astronomical equipment at home Easy tips on maintenance, photography, and star-mapping to help you get the most out of your telescope Lists of where to find everything astronomical, including Internet sites and Web resources; distributors, dealers, and conventions; and corporate listings for products and services

  11. The National Astronomical Observatory of Japan and Post-war Japanese Optical Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tajima, Toshiyuki

    This paper depicts some aspects of the formative process of the Japanese optical and infrared astronomical community in the post-war period, featuring the transition of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan(NAOJ). We take up three cases of telescope construction, examining their background and their contribution to the Japanese astronomical community. Through these cases, the characteristics of traditions and cultures of optical and infrared astronomy in Japan are considered. Although the Tokyo Astronomical Observatory (TAO) of the University of Tokyo, the predecessor of NAOJ, was originally founded as an agency for practical astronomical observation such as time and almanac service, it has become an international centre for all types of astrophysical research. Research and development of telescopes and observational instruments have become an important part of the astronomers' practice. Now, however, a number of Japanese universities are planning to have their own large to middle-sized telescopes, and a new style of astronomical research is emerging involving astrophysical studies utilising data acquired from the Virtual Observatory, so there is a distinct possibility that the status of the NAOJ will change even further in the future.

  12. Astronomy and astronomical education in the FSU (Former Soviet Union)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bochkarev, Nikolai G.

    The current situation in astronomy and astronomical education over the territory of the Former Soviet Union is traced. New facilities for radioastronomy are being put into work - the most important of them being the 2 coupled 32-m dishes, VLBI network "Quasar"; a number of observatories are acquiring an international status (in the frame of CIS); INTERNET is becoming available for an increasing number of astronomical institutions. Azerbaijan astronomers have overcome their isolation from the rest of the world and cooperate actively with the astronomical community. All-Russia and international olympics in astronomy for high school students are held and attract participants from increasing number of regions of Russia and other states. The outcome of the 9th JENAM in Moscow and of the events attached to the Meeting is presented.

  13. [French astronomical journals an interactivity of the scientific world].

    PubMed

    Vassilieff, Catherine

    2014-01-01

    Astronomical data issued from observatories find multiple uses on land, as well as on sea. Due to their structure and periodicity, scientific reviews are particularly adapted to peer review and sharing of data between astronomers as well as between astronomers and hobbyists. During the 19(th) century regional observatories first gather together professionals interested in the practical applications of the observations and later, under the influence of personalities such as Camille Flammarion, they bring together a larger non-professional audience. Being the epicentre of scientific exchange, the reviews have in the 20(th) century found their place on the websites of academic institutions as well as users forums.

  14. Astronomical databases of Nikolaev Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Protsyuk, Y.; Mazhaev, A.

    2008-07-01

    Several astronomical databases were created at Nikolaev Observatory during the last years. The databases are built by using MySQL search engine and PHP scripts. They are available on NAO web-site http://www.mao.nikolaev.ua.

  15. The Production Rate and Employment of Ph.D. Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metcalfe, Travis S.

    2007-05-01

    As in many sciences, the production rate of new Ph.D. astronomers is decoupled from the global demand for trained scientists. As noted by Thronson (1991, PASP, 103, 90), overproduction appears to be built into the system, making the mathematical formulation of surplus astronomer production similar to that for industrial pollution models -- an unintended side effect of the process. Following Harris (1994, ASP Conf., 57, 12), I document the production of Ph.D. astronomers from 1990 to 2005 using the online Dissertation Abstracts database. To monitor the changing patterns of employment, I examine the number of postdoctoral, tenure-track, and other jobs advertised in the AAS Job Register during this same period. Although the current situation is clearly unsustainable, it was much worse a decade ago with nearly 7 new Ph.D. astronomers in 1995 for every new tenure-track job. While the number of new permanent positions steadily increased throughout the late 1990's, the number of new Ph.D. recipients gradually declined. After the turn of the century, the production of new astronomers leveled off, but new postdoctoral positions grew dramatically. There has also been recent growth in the number of non-tenure-track lecturer, research, and support positions. This is just one example of a larger cultural shift to temporary employment that is happening throughout society -- it is not unique to astronomy.

  16. The Virtual Cosmos Project: Astronomical Data access for General Public via the National Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craig, N.; Mendez, B. J.; Hanisch, R. J.; Christian, C. A.; Summers, F.; Haisch, B.; Lindblom, J.

    2005-05-01

    We will describe the development of protocols to make Astronomy press-release quality images from HST and other sources publicly available through compatibility with the National Virtual Observatory (NVO). We will present the designs for a public portal to these resources, based on a robust evaluation of our intended audience. The availability of press-release quality materials via the NVO through a simplified interface will greatly enhance the utility of these materials for the public. Behind any portal to NVO data there is a standard registry and data structures that allow collections of data (such as the press release images) to be located and acquired. We will describe our design of the necessary protocols and metadata being used within the NVO framework for this project. We base our meta-tags on the considerable existing work done in the science community as well as the NASA education community. These refined metadata are applied to new HST press-release images as they are produced and registered with the NVO. We will describe methods for retrofitting pre-existing imagery with the metadata standards. The rich media, 3D navigation and visualization capabilities of the browser created by ManyOne Network Inc. are particularly well suited to the presentation of astronomical information and ever more detailed models of the local neighborhood, the Milky Way, etc. We will discuss the 3D navigation and visualization capabilities of the browser with particular focus on the Milky Way Galaxy. Development of an online encyclopedia to accompany the ManyOne portals as part of the Virtual Cosmos will also be described. Support from NASA's AISR Program is gratefully acknowledged.

  17. Giovanni Schiaparelli: Visions of a colour blind astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheehan, W.

    1997-02-01

    The greatest observer of Mars of the nineteenth century was the Italian astronomer Giovanni Virginio Schiaparelli. In his classic compilation of Martian observations, La Planete Mars, published in 1892, Camille Flammarion readily conceded that Schiaparelli's was 'the greatest work which has been carried out with regard to Mars,'1 while another eminent Martian, Percival Lowell, referred to the Italian astronomer alone as his Martian master ('cher maitre Martien').

  18. Astronomers Make First Images With Space Radio Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1997-07-01

    from orbiting radio telescopes. "We would be skeptical of a complex image if we had not been able to obtain a good point image first," Romney added. A second observing target, the quasar 1156+295, observed on June 5, made a more interesting picture. Seen by ground-based radio observatories, this object, at a distance of 6.5 billion light years, has been known to show an elongation in its structure to the northeast of the core. However, seen with the space-ground system, it is clearly shown to have both a core and a complex "jet" emerging from the core. Such jets, consisting of subatomic particles moving near the speed of light, are seen in many quasars and active galaxies throughout the universe. In fact, 1156+295 is one of a class of objects recently found by NASA's Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory to exhibit powerful gamma-ray emission; such objects are among the most compact and energetic known in the universe. "By showing that this object actually is a core-jet system, HALCA has produced its first new scientific information, and demonstrates its imaging capabilities for a variety of astrophysical investigations," Romney said. "This image shows that the jet extends much closer to the core, or 'central engine' of the quasar than is shown by ground-only imaging," Romney added. "This is an exciting and historical achievement for radio astronomy," said Miller Goss, NRAO's VLA/VLBA Director. "At NRAO, we have seen our colleagues -- scientists, electrical engineers, computer programmers and technicians in Socorro and Green Bank -- work for years on this project. Now, they can take pride in their success." Radio astronomers, like astronomers using visible light, usually seek to make images of the objects at which they aim their telescopes. Because radio waves are much longer than light waves, a radio telescope must be much larger than an optical instrument in order to see the same amount of detail. Greater ability to see detail, called resolving power, has been a quest of

  19. Annotations of a Public Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamo, A.

    2011-06-01

    Angelo Adamo is an Italian astronomer and artist interested in inspiring people with scientifically-based tales. He has recently published two illustrated books exploring the relationships between mankind and cosmos through physics, art, literature, music, cartoons, and movies.

  20. The "visibility" of West European astronomical research.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaschek, C.

    Publications and citations of five West European astronomical communities (Switzerland, Sweden, GFR, France and Spain) are compared. A large proportion of astronomers are sparsely cited or not cited at all, a fact which shows that estimations of the number of scientists based upon citation statistics are underestimates. It is found that publication rates are similar but citation rates very dissimilar in the five countries. No clear explanation of these differences is found, except for Spain. A plea is made to use citation statistics rather than publication statistics for evaluation.

  21. Astronomical Activities with Disabled People

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gil, Amelia Ortiz

    With this contribution we would like to share our experiences in organizing astronomical activities addressed to people with disabilities. The goal is twofold: we would like to invite all those with similar experiences to contribute to the compilation of a document to guide other astronomers who might be interested in carrying out these kind of activities aimed at groups of people with special needs. We also want to persuade public outreach officers that working with disabled people is not as difficult as it may seem at first, as long as they are provided with adequate educational material and guidelines about how to do it. The final goal is to build a repository that can be used by educators and public outreach officers as a guide when working with disabled people, specially during the International Year of Astronomy.

  1. Astronomers Take the Measure of Dark Matter in the universe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2001-09-01

    Using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, astronomers have obtained their most accurate determination to date of the amount of dark matter in galaxy clusters, the most massive objects in the universe. The results provide an important step towards a precise measurement of the total matter density of the universe. These results were presented today by Steven W. Allen of the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, UK at a press conference at the `Two Years of Science with Chandra' symposium in Washington, DC. Allen and his colleagues Robert W. Schmidt and Andrew C. Fabian at the Institute of Astronomy observed a carefully chosen sample of five of the largest clusters of galaxies known, whose distances range from 1.5 to 4 billion light years. The team made temperature maps of the hot multimillion-degree gas that fills the clusters. "The temperature maps can be used to determine the mass needed to prevent the hot gas from escaping the clusters" explained Allen. "We found that the stars in the galaxies and hot gas together contribute only about 13 percent of the mass. The rest must be in the form of dark matter." The nature of the dark matter is not known, but most astronomers think that it is in the form of an as yet unknown type of elementary particle that contributes to gravity through its mass but otherwise interacts weakly with normal matter. These dark matter particles are often called WIMPs, an acronym for `weakly interacting massive particles'. Clusters of galaxies are vast concentrations of galaxies, hot gas and dark matter spanning millions of light years, held together by gravity. Because of their size, clusters of galaxies are thought to provide a fair sample of the proportion of dark matter in the universe as a whole. "The implication of our results is that we live in a low-density universe" said Allen. "The total mass-density is only about thirty percent of that needed to stop the universe from expanding forever." The result reinforces recent findings from

  2. Reports on Astronomical Constants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukushima, Toshio

    Recent progress in the determination of astronomical constants is reviewed. By using the latest numerical integration of LC (Irwin and Fukushima, 1999) and the latest value of the geoidal potential W0 (Groten, 1999), we reestimated the general relativistic scale constants as LC = 1.480~826~867~4 × 10-8 ± 1.4 × 10-17, LG = 6.969~290~13 × 10-10 ± 6 × 10-18, and LB = 1.550~519~767~5 × 10-8 ± 2.0 × 10-17. Presented is a proposal to fix the numerical value of LG as the above in order to remove the geophysical ambiguity in its evaluation in the future. Next focused upon is the correction to the IAU 1976 Precession (Lieske et al., 1977). By simply averaging the latest VLBI-based determinations (Mathews et al., 2000; Petrov, 2000; Shirai and Fukushima, 2000; Vondrak and Ron, 2000) and the latest LLR-based determinations (Chapront et al., 1999), we obtained the best estimates of precession-related quantities at J2000.0: the general precession in longitude, p = 5~028.78 ± 0.03 ''/cy; obliquity of the ecliptic, ɛ0 = 23o26'21.''405~6 ± 0.''0005; and the pole offsets of the CEP of ICRS, Δ ψ0 sin ɛ0 = (-17.5 ± 0.8) mas, and Δ ɛ0 = (-5.2 ± 0.4) mas. After quoting the latest determination of mass of Pluto-Charon system (Tholen and Buie, 1997) and the recent change of G (Mohr and Taylor, 1999), proposed is a draft IAU 2000 File of Current Best Estimates of Astronomical Constants to replace the former 1994 version (Standish, 1995). It may even supplant the IAU 1976 System of Astronomical Constants (Duncombe et al., 1977), subject to discussion at this General Assembly.

  3. Professional Ethics for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marvel, K. B.

    2005-05-01

    There is a growing recognition that professional ethics is an important topic for all professional scientists, especially physical scientists. Situations at the National Laboratories have dramatically proven this point. Professional ethics is usually only considered important for the health sciences and the legal and medical professions. However, certain aspects of the day to day work of professional astronomers can be impacted by ethical issues. Examples include refereeing scientific papers, serving on grant panels or telescope allocation committees, submitting grant proposals, providing proper references in publications, proposals or talks and even writing recommendation letters for job candidates or serving on search committees. This session will feature several speakers on a variety of topics and provide time for questions and answers from the audience. Confirmed speakers include: Kate Kirby, Director Institute for Theoretical Atomic and Molecular Physics - Professional Ethics in the Physical Sciences: An Overview Rob Kennicutt, Astrophysical Journal Editor - Ethical Issues for Publishing Astronomers Peggy Fischer, Office of the NSF Inspector General - Professional Ethics from the NSF Inspector General's Point of View

  4. Long-publishing Astronomers, or the Problem of Classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenn, Joseph S.

    2012-01-01

    In response to several discussions among astronomers and historians of astronomy, I started out to prepare a paper on long-publishing astronomers--those who published for 70, 75, or even 80 years. However, I soon ran into a number of questions of classification, and that turned out to be at least as interesting. How do we decide on classifications? Every time we choose classes, such as asteroids, planets and stars, we run into objects that seem to be in between. In the present case a number of questions arise: Who is an astronomer? Several of those with the longest publication runs started out as physicists, published for years in that subject only, and later took up astrophysics, eventually publishing a few (or even no) papers in astronomy journals. What is a publication? Should we count publications in physics, chemistry, or mathematics? What about philosophy of science or history of science? What about the elderly retired astronomer presenting a memoir of his or her own work? Abstracts of oral presentations? Textbooks? Monographs? Book reviews? Obituaries? Then there is the problem of posthumous publications. Probably most would include papers in the pipeline when the astronomer dies, but what about the case where the coauthor finally publishes the paper eight years after the death of the person of interest? I eventually decided to make two lists, one which would include most of the above, and one restricted to papers that make contributions to physical science. Note that I do not say "refereed,” as that presents its own problems, especially when applied to periods before the twentieth century.

  5. This Month in Astronomical History: Preliminary Survey Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Teresa

    2017-01-01

    This Month in Astronomical History is a short (~500 word) column on the AAS website that revisits significant astronomical events or the lives of people who have made a large impact on the field. The monthly column began in July 2016 at the request of the Historical Astronomical Division. Examples of topics that have been covered include Comet Shoemaker-Levy’s collision with Jupiter, the discovery of the moons of Mars, the life of Edwin Hubble, Maria Mitchell’s comet discovery, and the launch of Sputnik II. A survey concerning the column is in progress to ensure the column addresses the interests and needs of a broad readership, including historians, educators, research astronomers, and the general public. Eleven questions focus on the style and content of the column, while eight collect simple demographics. The survey has been available on the AAS website since and was mentioned in several AAS newsletters; however, non-members of AAS were also recruited to include respondents from a variety of backgrounds. Preliminary results of the survey are presented and will be used to hone the style and content of the column to serve the widest possible audience. Responses continue to be collected at: https://goo.gl/forms/Lhwl2aWJl2Vkoo7v1

  6. Astronomical dating in the 19th century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilgen, Frederik J.

    2010-01-01

    Today astronomical tuning is widely accepted as numerical dating method after having revolutionised the age calibration of the geological archive and time scale over the last decades. However, its origin is not well known and tracing its roots is important especially from a science historic perspective. Astronomical tuning developed in consequence of the astronomical theory of the ice ages and was repeatedly used in the second half of the 19th century before the invention of radio-isotopic dating. Building upon earlier ideas of Joseph Adhémar, James Croll started to formulate his astronomical theory of the ice ages in 1864 according to which precession controlled ice ages occur alternatingly on both hemispheres at times of maximum eccentricity of the Earth's orbit. The publication of these ideas compelled Charles Lyell to revise his Principles of Geology and add Croll's theory, thus providing an alternative to his own geographical cause of the ice ages. Both Croll and Lyell initially tuned the last glacial epoch to the prominent eccentricity maximum 850,000 yr ago. This age was used as starting point by Lyell to calculate an age of 240 million years for the beginning of the Cambrium. But Croll soon revised the tuning to a much younger less prominent eccentricity maximum between 240,000 and 80,000 yr ago. In addition he tuned older glacial deposits of late Miocene and Eocene ages to eccentricity maxima around 800,000 and 2,800,000 yr ago. Archibald and James Geikie were the first to recognize interglacials during the last glacial epoch, as predicted by Croll's theory, and attempted to tune them to precession. Soon after Frank Taylor linked a series of 15 end-moraines left behind by the retreating ice sheet to precession to arrive at a possible age of 300,000 yr for the maximum glaciation. In a classic paper, Axel Blytt (1876) explained the scattered distribution of plant groups in Norway to precession induced alternating rainy and dry periods as recorded by the

  7. Division B Commission 6: Astronomical Telegrams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamaoka, H.; Green, D. W. E.; Samus, N. N.; Aksnes, K.; Gilmore, A. C.; Nakano, S.; Sphar, T.; Tichá, J.; Williams, G. V.

    2016-04-01

    IAU Commission 6 ``Astronomical Telegrams'' had a single business meeting during Honolulu General Assembly of the IAU. It took place on Tuesday, 11 August 2015. The meeting was attended by Hitoshi Yamaoka (President), Daniel Green (Director of the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, CBAT, via Skype), Steven Chesley (JPL), Paul Chodas (JPL), Alan Gilmore (Canterbury University), Shinjiro Kouzuma (Chukyo University), Paolo Mazzali (Co-Chair of the Supernova Working Group), Elena Pian (Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa), Marion Schmitz (chair IAU Working Group Designations + NED), David Tholen (University of Hawaii), Jana Ticha (Klet Observatory), Milos Tichy (Klet Observatory), Giovanni Valsecchi (INAF\\slash Italy), Gareth Williams (Minor Planet Center). Apologies: Nikolai Samus (General Catalogue of Variable Stars, GCVS).

  8. Automated microdensitometer for digitizing astronomical plates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Angilello, J.; Chiang, W. H.; Elmegreen, D. M.; Segmueller, A.

    1984-01-01

    A precision microdensitometer was built under control of an IBM S/1 time-sharing computer system. The instrument's spatial resolution is better than 20 microns. A raster scan of an area of 10x10 sq mm (500x500 raster points) takes 255 minutes. The reproducibility is excellent and the stability is good over a period of 30 hours, which is significantly longer than the time required for most scans. The intrinsic accuracy of the instrument was tested using Kodak standard filters, and it was found to be better than 3%. A comparative accuracy was tested measuring astronomical plates of galaxies for which absolute photoelectric photometry data were available. The results showed an accuracy excellent for astronomical applications.

  9. Examination and notes to the astronomical records in >SUISHU<.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Ciyuan

    1996-06-01

    Astronomical records are an important part in Chinese official historical books. Their main purpose was for astrology and they are an obstacle for historians who read those books. With modern astronomical methods, one can compute and examine most of those ancient records. By comparing the computed results with the original texts, one can examine the texts, find their mistakes, study their observation method and regulation, inspect astrological theory, take a deeper understanding to those important historical materials. As an example the author deals with the astronomcial records of Dynasties Liang and Chen for 60 years in >SUISHU<, the official history of Dynasty Sui. He also synthesized other historical sources in addition to the astronomical computation.

  10. Recent Astronomical Development in Asia Pacific Rim

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leung, K.-C.

    2009-08-01

    For over two decades The Pacific Rim Conference on Stellar Astrophysics series has been held exclusively at the Asian Rim. The primary reason is that the majority of nations in Asia are less developed in Astronomy than many countries on the American Rim. At time same time, many nations in Asia are less able to afford the costs of long distance travel for astronomical conferences. As a result Asia has had a hold on the Pacific Rim Conferences. Over the last few years new research institutes have been coming on board. The ones that have most visibly emerged are; National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand, NARIT, The Astrophysical Research Center for the Structure and Evolution of the Cosmos, ARCSEC, and Kavli Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University, KIAA-PKU. It is interesting to note the development and structure of each is very different. So far they all appear to be working well. Hopefully they will provide a variety of models for astronomical institutes in developing nations of the region and perhaps beyond.

  11. Astronomical Interlibrary Cooperation: The Long and Difficult Plan for Coordinated Acquisition of Journals -- the Italian Case

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gasperini, A.; Abrami, L.; Olostro Cirella, E.

    2007-10-01

    Until 2002, the Italian astronomical observatories were independent research institutes. Their libraries, though different in their origins and history, shared common bibliographical materials, users and aims. This situation prompted a first experience of unofficial cooperation between astronomical observatory libraries, which produced outstanding results, in particular a detailed survey of the nature, cost and use of scientific journals. Starting from 2002, when the 12 observatories merged into a single institution, the National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF), the experience of cooperation between the libraries became official. The INAF headquarters, in fact, has recently established the Library Documentary and Archive Service of the National Institute for Astrophysics (SBDA-INAF) in order to have a centralized astronomical bibliographical service and to promote cooperation among libraries. At the end of 2004, following the INAF rearrangement, 5 Institutes of the National Research Council (CNR) joined the still new organization introducing further complications. In this work we explain all the problems faced by a working group to elaborate an efficient plan of coordinated acquisition of journals: the difficulties in coordinating 17 different sites distributed over the whole national territory, the not so easy negotiation with the publishers, the choice between e-only or print & online and, last but not least, the psychological impact on the scientific community. The cooperation among Italian astronomical libraries was a plan begun many years ago and has continued through various events over the years. This presentation takes into consideration the various stages of our project focusing on some crucial aspects.

  12. How accurately can we measure the water vapour content with astronomical spectra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kausch, Wolfgang; Noll, Stefan; Smette, Alain; Kimeswenger, Stefan; Kerber, Florian; Jones, Amy M.; Szyszka, Cezary; Unterguggenberger, Stefanie

    2014-05-01

    Light from astronomical objects unavoidably has to pass through the Earth's atmosphere when being observed by ground-based telescopes. Thus, the fingerprint of the atmospheric state at the time of the observation is present in any spectrum taken by astronomical spectrographs due to absorption and emission arising in the atmosphere. The Very Large Telescope (VLT), operated by the European Southern Observatory, is one of the world's largest telescope facilities located at Cerro Paranal in the Chilean Atacama Desert offering a wide selection of various instruments. One of the most versatile instruments is X-Shooter. This medium resolution Echelle spectrograph covers the entire wavelength regime from 0.3 to 2.5 μm and is mounted on one of the 8m-class telescopes of the VLT. Due to its versatility, it is widely used, which leads to a good temporal coverage. We have recently developed the software package molecfit, a tool used to model and correct for atmospheric absorption lines visible in astronomical spectra. It is based on the radiative transfer code LBLRTM, the HITRAN line parameter database, the GDAS atmospheric profiles, and local meteorological data. A by-product is the determination of the amount of precipitable water vapour (PWV) above the observatory, as well as several other molecules, including CO2. In this poster, we investigate the accuracy of this method. We have used a set of X-Shooter spectra of so-called telluric standard stars, which are hot and bright stars showing nearly no intrinsic spectral features in the near infrared regime. Thus, most absorption features present in these spectra are related to the absorption arising in the Earth's atmosphere. For each spectrum, we have determined the PWV with our molecfit code and compared it with direct measurements achieved by the LHATPRO radiometer recently installed at Cerro Paranal. Therefore we have extended the results obtained by Kerber et al. (2012, Proc. SPIE, 8446) on a long time scale. Due to the

  13. The first massive astronomical observation event in Mexico City

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Espinosa, Mariana; Hernandez, Xavier

    2011-06-01

    On the night of the 20th of February 2008 there was a total eclipse of the moon visible from Mexico City, with a total duration from 19:42 hrs to 23:09 hrs. At the Instituto de Astronomía, UNAM, we took this opportunity to organise a massive astronomical party on the central plaza of the city, the Zocalo. Over a period of about 6 hrs. we set up a huge astro-party, with free use of over 100 telescopes, where we estimate over 40,000 persons looked through an astronomical telescope at the moon and Saturn, most for the first time in their lives. Numerous stands including a children's games, an Astronomy conference room, and the free distribution of Astronomical material were organised. Here we describe some of the issues associated with the planning and implementation of the event. Coordination issues were complex, involving interaction with divers and numerous authorities, city, national, police, traffic, medical assistance in readiness, aide from other universities, and amateur astronomical societies, which supplied most of the telescopes. An extensive publicity campaign was launched with several weeks of anticipation, and although we had no way of estimating the public response, we were ready with over 800 volunteers at the Zócalo on the 20th of February. The public response was massive and overwhelmingly positive, thousands swarmed the square in a completely peaceful and well organised interaction between Astronomy and society at large, over many complementary levels

  14. Astronomía Mocoví

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López, A.; Giménez Benitez, S.; Fernández, L.

    El presente trabajo, es una revisión crítica de la astronomía en la cultura Mocoví, aportando a lo realizado previamente por Lehmann Nistche (Lehmann Nistche, 1924 y 1927) el resultado de nuestro trabajo de campo. Un mayor conocimiento de las cosmovisiones de las etnias de esta área es fundamental para una mejor comprensión de la dispersión de las ideas cosmológicas entre los pueblos aborígenes americanos, dada la importancia del corredor chaqueño como conexión entre las altas culturas andinas, la mesopotamia y la región pampeana (Susnik, 1972). Para ello se realiza una comparación con otras cosmovisiones del área americana. Nuestro aporte se enmarca dentro de las actuales líneas de trabajo mundialmente en desarrollo en Astronomía en la Cultura.

  15. Super resolution for astronomical observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhan; Peng, Qingyu; Bhanu, Bir; Zhang, Qingfeng; He, Haifeng

    2018-05-01

    In order to obtain detailed information from multiple telescope observations a general blind super-resolution (SR) reconstruction approach for astronomical images is proposed in this paper. A pixel-reliability-based SR reconstruction algorithm is described and implemented, where the developed process incorporates flat field correction, automatic star searching and centering, iterative star matching, and sub-pixel image registration. Images captured by the 1-m telescope at Yunnan Observatory are used to test the proposed technique. The results of these experiments indicate that, following SR reconstruction, faint stars are more distinct, bright stars have sharper profiles, and the backgrounds have higher details; thus these results benefit from the high-precision star centering and image registration provided by the developed method. Application of the proposed approach not only provides more opportunities for new discoveries from astronomical image sequences, but will also contribute to enhancing the capabilities of most spatial or ground-based telescopes.

  16. Modern astronomical knowledge as component of general education for sustainable development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nurgaliev, I.

    {It is shown that 1) astronomical knowledge was a foundation of emerging modern physics and natural sciences based on mathematics, 2) mathematical basis of the natural sciences serves as an orientation of progress in the true objective of social sciences. The last example for this chain of impacts is the discovery of the fundamental demographic equation (N=aN^2-bN) full of the astronomical analogy [9]. Modern age endorses new imperatives on education. Reckless exploitation of the natural resources will cause irreversible exhaustion of the agro- and bio-potential of the planet during lifetime of a few generations. The adequate respond to the challenge lies in modern technologies and educating responsible (socially oriented) professionals. That is why the importance of teaching modern technologies along with providing the students with the understanding of global long term consequences of the human industrial activities is growing. The course ``Theoretical Foundations of Modern Technologies" at the Moscow State Agricultural University (Timiryazev Academy) taught by the author is discussed. New experimental project ``Space Technologies, Ecology and Safe Energetics in School of the Future" is presented as a project of a new age in the process of implementing at the Moscow city secondary schools by the colleagues and by the author. The new cosmological models in the frame of the Newtonian and general relativistic treatments developed by the author are considered in this report as an example of immediate implementation of new astro-knowledge into the education for modern agrarian students. The centrifugal forces acting between particles rotating randomly around each other are shown to be able to reverse gravitational collapse.

  17. Interference testing methods of large astronomical mirrors base on lenses and CGH wavefront correctors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdulkadyrov, Magomed A.; Belousov, Sergey P.; Patrikeev, Vladimir E.; Semenov, Alexandr P.

    2010-07-01

    Since last years and at present days LZOS, JSC has been producing a range of primary mirrors of astronomical telescopes with diameter more than 1m under contracts with foreign companies. Simultaneous testing of an aspherical surface figure by means of a lens corrector and CGH (computer generated hologram) corrector, testing of the corrector using the CGH allow challenging the task of definite testing of the mirrors surfaces figure. The results of successful figuring of the mirrors with diameter up to 4m like VISTA Project (Southern European Observatory), TNT (Thai National telescope, Australia - Thailand), LCO telescopes (Las Cumbres Observatory, USA; Russian national projects and meeting these mirrors specifications' requirements are all considered as the sufficient evidence.

  18. Education and Outreach with the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawton, Brandon L.; Eisenhamer, B.; Raddick, M. J.; Mattson, B. J.; Harris, J.

    2012-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is an international effort to bring a large-scale electronic integration of astronomy data, tools, and services to the global community. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is the U.S. NSF- and NASA-funded VO effort that seeks to put efficient astronomical tools in the hands of U.S. astronomers, students, educators, and public outreach leaders. These tools will make use of data collected by the multitude of ground- and space-based missions over the previous decades. Many future missions will also be incorporated into the VAO tools when they launch. The Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) program for the VAO is led by the Space Telescope Science Institute in collaboration with the HEASARC E/PO program and Johns Hopkins University. VAO E/PO efforts seek to bring technology, real-world astronomical data, and the story of the development and infrastructure of the VAO to the general public, formal education, and informal education communities. Our E/PO efforts will be structured to provide uniform access to VAO information, enabling educational opportunities across multiple wavelengths and time-series data sets. The VAO team recognizes that many VO programs have built powerful tools for E/PO purposes, such as Microsoft's World Wide Telescope, SDSS Sky Server, Aladin, and a multitude of citizen-science tools available from Zooniverse. We are building partnerships with Microsoft, Zooniverse, and NASA's Night Sky Network to leverage the communities and tools that already exist to meet the needs of our audiences. Our formal education program is standards-based and aims to give teachers the tools to use real astronomical data to teach the STEM subjects. To determine which tools the VAO will incorporate into the formal education program, needs assessments will be conducted with educators across the U.S.

  19. Planet from another galaxy discovered - Galactic cannibalism brings an exoplanet of extragalactic origin within astronomers' reach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-11-01

    (European Space Agency, Noordwijk, the Netherlands), and T. Schulze-Hartung (Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie, Heidelberg, Germany). ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory and VISTA, the world's largest survey telescope. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  20. Future Astronomical Observatories on the Moon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burns, Jack O. (Editor); Mendell, Wendell W. (Editor)

    1988-01-01

    Papers at a workshop which consider the topic astronomical observations from a lunar base are presented. In part 1, the rationale for performing astronomy on the Moon is established and economic factors are considered. Part 2 includes concepts for individual lunar based telescopes at the shortest X-ray and gamma ray wavelengths, for high energy cosmic rays, and at optical and infrared wavelengths. Lunar radio frequency telescopes are considered in part 3, and engineering considerations for lunar base observatories are discussed in part 4. Throughout, advantages and disadvantages of lunar basing compared to terrestrial and orbital basing of observatories are weighted. The participants concluded that the Moon is very possibly the best location within the inner solar system from which to perform front-line astronomical research.

  1. Astronomers Without Borders: An IYA2009 Organizational Node Dedicated to Connecting Groups Worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, M.

    2008-11-01

    Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) is a new global organization and IYA2009 Organizational Node dedicated to furthering understanding and goodwill across national and cultural boundaries using the universal appeal of astronomy. The AWB network of Affiliates will bring together up to 1000 astronomy clubs, magazines and other organizations involved in astronomy. IYA2009 projects include The World at Night, a Special IYA2009 Project, and coordination of the 100 Hours of Astronomy Global Cornerstone Project. Sharing Telescopes and Resources (STAR) gathers surplus and new equipment in developed countries and donates them to clubs in undeveloped countries, with follow-up programs meant to ensure the best use of the equipment. The AWB website will serve as the basis for all programs including forums, galleries, video conferences and other relationship-building activities. AWB will continue and grow for many years beyond the end of IYA2009.

  2. Daytime School Guided Visits to an Astronomical Observatory in Brazil

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colombo, Pedro Donizete, Jr.; Silva, Cibelle Celestino; Aroca, Silvia Calbo

    2010-01-01

    This article analyzes the activity "Daytime School Guided Visits" at an astronomical observatory in Brazil with pupils from primary school. The adopted research methodology relied on questionnaire applications and semistructured interviews. The objectives were to identify the influences of the visits on learning of astronomical concepts…

  3. Some early astronomical sites in the Kashmir region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iqbal, Naseer; Vahia, M. N.; Masood, Tabasum; Ahmad, Aijaz

    2009-03-01

    We discuss a number of early rock art sites in the Kashmir Valley in northern India and neighbouring Pakistan, and suggest that some of these contain depictions of astronomical objects or events. The sites are in the Srinagar and Sopore regions and in or near the Ladakh region, and date to Neolithic or Upper Paleolithic times. Our studies suggest that during this period some of the ancient astronomers recorded supernovae, meteorite impacts, the Sun, the Moon and the seasons in their rock art.

  4. POST WWII Astronomy and Rebuilding U.S. Astronomical Institutions--The U.S. Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howard, W. E.

    1993-12-01

    A belief that technology contributed substantially to the winning of World War II spurred the formation of ONR, then NSF which was formed in ONR's image. NASA's space support, cold war competition, and ARPA's funding of high risk, high payoff technologies led to state-of-the-art instrumentation in astronomy. Limits on funding for instrumentation at individual institutions led to the concept and growth of national astronomy observatories that made observing time available to the best ideas from astronomers who had no access to big telescopes at home. Success of these major observatories lay also in their treatment of visitors who were made to feel a part of the institution. As federal funding became available, several issues were heavily debated, among which were overhead costs on grant awards, what the breakdown of responsibility should be for institutional vs. federal funding, spreading vs. concentrating the available funding, the role of the AAS and advisory groups, federal vs. researcher specification of the research program, and the roots of the modern debate concerning research relevance. U.S. astronomers are unique because of our eclecticism, our development of a winning system of workplaces, our peer review system, our united front presented by our projective planning and our periodic decade reviews, our international orientation, all in the context of national support that is preeminent in the world. These features operate within an economic system that enables us to communicate and travel easily, and scientific and academic administrations that permit astronomers to concentrate on their research without excess internal or external politics.

  5. Denver's Pioneer Astronomer: Herbert Alonso Howe (1858-1926)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howe, H. J.; Stencel, R. E.; Fisher, S.

    1999-05-01

    Herbert A. Howe arrived at Denver University (DU) to teach autumn 1880 classes, in math, astronomy and surveying. Howe established himself with clever solutions to the Kepler problem for orbit determinations in thesis work at Cincinnati Observatory. Riding the economic expansion of Colorado gold and silver mining in 1888, the University accepted a proposed gift of a major observatory, offered by Denver real estate baron, Humphrey Chamberlin. The result features a 20 inch aperture Alvan Clark refractor, which still ranks among the largest telescopes of the era. With the observatory building ready, the Silver Panic of 1893 -- when the US Congress dropped silver reserves from the currency basis -- burst the Denver economic bubble. Chamberlin was unable to complete payments on the balances due. Clark and G.N.Saegmuller (Fauth and Co.) at personal expense, delivered on the optics and telescope assemblies in 1894, but would wait for repayment. Sadly, this fiscal crisis affected DU for over a decade. Professor Howe, while observatory director, found himself consumed as Dean and Acting Chancellor for a young, struggling university, at the expense of the astronomy future that had looked so bright in 1892. Absent the Silver Panic, Howe would have probably been given an endowed chair in astronomy, as promised by Chamberlin. The complexion of American astronomy at the time of the birth of the American Astronomical Society in 1899 might have been different, in terms of US observing sites, etc. We are fortunate to have extensive Prof.Howe's daily diaries now in the University archives. These describe Howe's view of progress on the observatory, meetings with astronomy notables, plus vignettes of the life and times of Denver and the nation. Grandson, Herbert Julian Howe rediscovered their existence and is summarizing them in the form of a biography entitled: The Pioneer Astronomer. DU archival records contain numerous original letters from late 19th century astronomy luminaries

  6. Skype Me! Astronomers, Students, and Cutting-Edge Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hickox, Ryan C.; Gauthier, Adrienne J.

    2014-06-01

    A primary goal of many university science courses is to promote understanding of the process of contemporary scientific inquiry. One powerful way to achieve this is for students to explore current research and then interact directly with the leading scientist, the feasibility of which has recently increased dramatically due to free online video communication tools. We report on a program implemented at Dartmouth College in which students connect with a guest astronomer through Skype (video chat). The Skype session is wrapped in a larger activity where students explore current research articles, interact with the astronomer, and then reflect on the experience. The in-class Skype discussions require a small time commitment from scientists (20-30 minutes, with little or no need for preparation) while providing students direct access to researchers at the cutting edge of modern astronomy. We outline the procedures used to implement these discussions, and present qualitative assessments of student's understanding of the process of research, as well as feedback from the guest astronomers.

  7. John Twysden and John Palmer: 17th-century Northamptonshire astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frost, M. A.

    2008-01-01

    John Twysden (1607-1688) and John Palmer (1612-1679) were two astronomers in the circle of Samuel Foster (circa 1600-1652), the subject of a recent paper in this journal. John Twysden qualified in law and medicine and led a peripatetic life around England and Europe. John Palmer was Rector of Ecton, Northamptonshire and later Archdeacon of Northampton. The two astronomers catalogued observations made from Northamptonshire from the 1640s to the 1670s. In their later years Twysden and Palmer published works on a variety of topics, often astronomical. Palmer engaged in correspondence with Henry Oldenburg, the first secretary of the Royal Society, on topics in astronomy and mathematics.

  8. A website for astronomical news in Spanish

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz-Gil, A.

    2008-06-01

    Noticias del Cosmos is a collection of web pages within the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Valencia's website where we publish short daily summaries of astronomical press releases. Most, if not all of, the releases are originally written in English, and often Spanish readers may find them difficult to understand because not many people are familiar with the scientific language employed in these releases. Noticias del Cosmos has two principal aims. First, we want to communicate the latest astronomical news on a daily basis to a wide Spanish-speaking public who would otherwise not be able to read them because of the language barrier. Second, daily news can be used as a tool to introduce the astronomical topics of the school curriculum in a more immediate and relevant way. Most of the students at school have not yet reached a good enough level in their knowledge of English to fully understand a press release, and Noticias del Cosmos offers them and their teachers this news in their mother tongue. During the regular programme of school visits at the Observatory we use the news as a means of showing that there is still a lot to be discovered. So far the visits to the website have been growing steadily. Between June 2003 and June 2007 we had more than 30,000 visits (excluding 2006). More than 50% of the visits come from Spain, followed by visitors from South and Central America. The feedback we have received from teachers so far has been very positive, showing the usefulness of news items in the classroom when teaching astronomy.

  9. Tests of commercial colour CMOS cameras for astronomical applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pokhvala, S. M.; Reshetnyk, V. M.; Zhilyaev, B. E.

    2013-12-01

    We present some results of testing commercial colour CMOS cameras for astronomical applications. Colour CMOS sensors allow to perform photometry in three filters simultaneously that gives a great advantage compared with monochrome CCD detectors. The Bayer BGR colour system realized in colour CMOS sensors is close to the astronomical Johnson BVR system. The basic camera characteristics: read noise (e^{-}/pix), thermal noise (e^{-}/pix/sec) and electronic gain (e^{-}/ADU) for the commercial digital camera Canon 5D MarkIII are presented. We give the same characteristics for the scientific high performance cooled CCD camera system ALTA E47. Comparing results for tests of Canon 5D MarkIII and CCD ALTA E47 show that present-day commercial colour CMOS cameras can seriously compete with the scientific CCD cameras in deep astronomical imaging.

  10. Astronomical masers and lasers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Townes, C. H.

    1997-12-01

    A brief account is given of the discovery of the astronomical maser and laser effects in OH radicals and in molecules of water (H2O), carbon monoxide and dioxide (CO and CO2), ammonia (NH3), methyl alcohol (CH3OH), formaldehyde (CH2O), and silicon oxide (SiO). A detailed table is given of all the currently known molecular stimulated-emission lines.

  11. Simple Astronomical Theory of Climate.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Benumof, Reuben

    1979-01-01

    The author derives, applying perturbation theory, from a simple astronomical model the approximate periods of secular variation of some of the parameters of the Earth's orbit and relates these periods to the past climate of the Earth, indicating the difficulties in predicting the climate of the future. (GA)

  12. On astronomical drawing [1846

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Charles Piazzi

    Reprinted from the Memoirs of the Royal Astronomical Society 15, 1846, pp. 71-82. With annotations and illustrations added by Klaus Hentschel. The activities of the Astronomer Royal for Scotland, Charles Piazzi Smyth (1819-1900), include the triangulation of South African districts, landscape painting, day-to-day or tourist sketching, the engraving and lithographing of prominent architectural sites, the documentary photography of the Egyptian pyramids or the Tenerife Dragon tree, and `instant photographs' of the clouds above his retirement home in Clova, Ripon. His colorful records of the aurora polaris, and solar and terrestrial spectra all profited from his trained eye and his subtle mastery of the pen and the brush. As his paper on astronomical drawing, which we chose to reproduce in this volume, amply demonstrates, he was conversant in most of the print technology repertoire that the 19th century had to offer, and carefully selected the one most appropriate to each sujet. For instance, he chose mezzotint for the plates illustrating Maclear's observations of Halley's comet in 1835/36, so as to achieve a ``rich profundity of shadows, the deep obscurity of which is admirably adapted to reproduce those fine effects of chiaroscuro frequently found in works where the quantity of dark greatly predominates.'' The same expertise with which he tried to emulate Rembrandt's chiaroscuro effects he applied to assessing William and John Herschel's illustrations of nebulae, which appeared in print between 1811 and 1834. William Herschel's positive engraving, made partly by stippling and partly by a coarse mezzotint, receives sharp admonishment because of the visible ruled crossed lines in the background and the fact that ``the objects, which are also generally too light, [have] a much better definition than they really possess.'' On the other hand, John Herschel's illustration of nebulae and star clusters, given in negative, ``in which the lights are the darkest part of the

  13. Historical Examples of Lobbying: The Case of Strasbourg Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heck, Andre

    2012-08-01

    Several astronomical observatories have been established in Strasbourg in very differing contexts. In the late 17th century, an observing post (scientifically sterile) was put on top of a tower, the Hospital Gate, essentially for the prestige of the city and the notoriety of the university. In the 19th century, the observatory built on the Académie hosting the French university was the first attempt to set up in the city a real observatory equipped with genuine instrumentation with the purpose of carrying out serious research, but the succession of political regimes in France and the continual bidding for moving the university to other locations, together with the faltering of later scholars, torpedoed any significant scientific usage of the place. After the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian war, the German authorities set up a prestigious university campus with a whole range of institutes together with a modern observatory consisting of several buildings and hosting a flotilla of excellent instruments, including the then largest refractor of the country. This paper illustrates various types of lobbying used in the steps above while detailing, from archive documents largely unexploited so far, original research on the two first observatories.

  14. Astronomical Applications - Naval Oceanography Portal

    Science.gov Websites

    section Advanced Search... Sections Home Time Earth Orientation Astronomy Meteorology Oceanography Ice You Information Center Background information on common astronomical phenomena, calendars and time, and related topics Rise, Set, and Twilight Definitions World Time Zone Map Phases of the Moon and Percent of the Moon

  15. TMT in the Astronomical Landscape of the 2020s

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dickinson, Mark; Inami, Hanae

    2014-07-01

    Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory and NOAO will host the second TMT Science Forum at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort in Tucson, Arizona. The TMT Science Forum is an an annual gathering of astronomers, educators, and observatory staff, who meet to explore TMT science, instrumentation, observatory operations, archiving and data processing, astronomy education, and science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) issues. It is an opportunity for astronomers from the international TMT partners and from the US-at-large community to learn about the observatory status, discuss and plan cutting-edge science, establish collaborations, and to help shape the future of TMT. One important theme for this year's Forum will be the synergy between TMT and other facilities in the post-2020 astronomical landscape. There will be plenary sessions, an instrumentation workshop, topical science sessions and meetings of the TMT International Science Development Teams (ISDTs).

  16. Astronomical and Cosmological Aspects of Maya Architecture and Urbanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Šprajc, I.

    2009-08-01

    Archaeoastronomical studies carried out so far have shown that the orientations in the ancient Maya architecture were, like elsewhere in Mesoamerica, largely astronomical, mostly referring to sunrises and sunsets on particular dates and allowing the use of observational calendars that facilitated a proper scheduling of agricultural activities. However, the astronomical alignments cannot be understood in purely utilitarian terms. Since the repeatedly occurring directions are most consistently incorporated in monumental architecture of civic and ceremonial urban cores, they must have had an important place in religion and worldview. The characteristics of urban layouts, as well as architectural and other elements associated with important buildings, reveal that the Maya architectural and urban planning was dictated by a complex set of rules, in which astronomical considerations related to practical needs were embedded in a broader framework of cosmological concepts substantiated by political ideology.

  17. Astronomía y Física: un matrimonio Sartriano

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vucetich, H.

    Desde el siglo XVII, Física y Astronomía han formado un matrimonio similar al de Sartre y Beauvoir: lleno de amores contingentes, pero firme y duradero. En la charla examino tres de los frutos más recientes de este matrimonio: - La confirmación de la Relatividad General con datos astronómicos. - Astrofísica y Física de neutrinos. - Teorías de supercuerdas y astronomía.

  18. Astronomical random numbers for quantum foundations experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leung, Calvin; Brown, Amy; Nguyen, Hien; Friedman, Andrew S.; Kaiser, David I.; Gallicchio, Jason

    2018-04-01

    Photons from distant astronomical sources can be used as a classical source of randomness to improve fundamental tests of quantum nonlocality, wave-particle duality, and local realism through Bell's inequality and delayed-choice quantum eraser tests inspired by Wheeler's cosmic-scale Mach-Zehnder interferometer gedanken experiment. Such sources of random numbers may also be useful for information-theoretic applications such as key distribution for quantum cryptography. Building on the design of an astronomical random number generator developed for the recent cosmic Bell experiment [Handsteiner et al. Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 060401 (2017), 10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.060401], in this paper we report on the design and characterization of a device that, with 20-nanosecond latency, outputs a bit based on whether the wavelength of an incoming photon is greater than or less than ≈700 nm. Using the one-meter telescope at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Table Mountain Observatory, we generated random bits from astronomical photons in both color channels from 50 stars of varying color and magnitude, and from 12 quasars with redshifts up to z =3.9 . With stars, we achieved bit rates of ˜1 ×106Hz/m 2 , limited by saturation of our single-photon detectors, and with quasars of magnitudes between 12.9 and 16, we achieved rates between ˜102 and 2 ×103Hz /m2 . For bright quasars, the resulting bitstreams exhibit sufficiently low amounts of statistical predictability as quantified by the mutual information. In addition, a sufficiently high fraction of bits generated are of true astronomical origin in order to address both the locality and freedom-of-choice loopholes when used to set the measurement settings in a test of the Bell-CHSH inequality.

  19. GalileoMobile: Astronomical activities in schools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dasi Espuig, Maria; Vasquez, Mayte; Kobel, Philippe

    GalileoMobile is an itinerant science education initiative run on a voluntary basis by an international team of astronomers, educators, and science communicators. Our team's main goal is to make astronomy accessible to schools and communities around the globe that have little or no access to outreach actions. We do this by performing teacher workshops, activities with students, and donating educational material. Since the creation of GalileoMobile in 2008, we have travelled to Chile, Bolivia, Peru, India, and Uganda, and worked with 56 schools in total. Our activities are centred on the GalileoMobile Handbook of Activities that comprises around 20 astronomical activities which we adapted from many different sources, and translated into 4 languages. The experience we gained in Chile, Bolivia, Peru, India, and Uganda taught us that (1) bringing experts from other countries was very stimulating for children as they are naturally curious about other cultures and encourages a collaboration beyond borders; (2) high-school students who were already interested in science were always very eager to interact with real astronomers doing research to ask for career advice; (3) inquiry-based methods are important to make the learning process more effective and we have therefore, re-adapted the activities in our Handbook according to these; (4) local teachers and university students involved in our activities have the potential to carry out follow-up activities, and examples are those from Uganda and India.

  20. Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Redmond, Jay; Kodak, Charles

    2001-01-01

    This report summarizes the technical parameters and the technical staff of the Very Long Base Interferometry (VLBI) system at the fundamental station Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory (GGAO). It also gives an overview about the VLBI activities during the previous year. The outlook lists the outstanding tasks to improve the performance of GGAO.

  1. He2-90'S APPEARANCE DECEIVES ASTRONOMERS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have stumbled upon a mysterious object that is grudgingly yielding clues to its identity. A quick glance at the Hubble picture at top shows that this celestial body, called He2-90, looks like a young, dust-enshrouded star with narrow jets of material streaming from each side. But it's not. The object is classified as a planetary nebula, the glowing remains of a dying, lightweight star. But the Hubble observations suggest that it may not fit that classification, either. The Hubble astronomers now suspect that this enigmatic object may actually be a pair of aging stars masquerading as a single youngster. One member of the duo is a bloated red giant star shedding matter from its outer layers. This matter is then gravitationally captured in a rotating, pancake-shaped accretion disk around a compact partner, which is most likely a young white dwarf (the collapsed remnant of a sun-like star). The stars cannot be seen in the Hubble images because a lane of dust obscures them. The Hubble picture at top shows a centrally bright object with jets, appearing like strings of beads, emanating from both sides of center. (The other streaks of light running diagonally from He2-90 are artificial effects of the telescope's optical system.) Each jet possesses at least six bright clumps of gas, which are speeding along at rates estimated to be at least 375,000 miles an hour (600,000 kilometers an hour). These gaseous salvos are being ejected into space about every 100 years, and may be caused by periodic instabilities in He2-90's accretion disk. The jets from very young stars behave in a similar way. Deep images taken from terrestrial observatories show each jet extending at least 100,000 astronomical units (one astronomical unit equals the Earth-Sun distance, 93 million miles). The jets' relatively modest speed implies that one member of the duo is a white dwarf. Observations by the Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory, however, discovered a

  2. Preventing Rape of the Observatory: Thoughts on the Urgency of Preserving Historic Astronomical Artifacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, T. E.

    2005-12-01

    "What good is this century-old monster refractor? Sell it and use the money to buy a brand new go-to reflector useful for teaching students and advancing astronomy." So argues logic that is endangering an increasing number of university observatories around the U.S. (if not the rest of the world), even up to the Yerkes Observatory and its 40-inch Clark, world's largest refractor by the acknowledged world's best lens-makers. While most non-historians readily accept the value of preserving our cultural heritage in rare and precious documents (such as the Declaration of Independence), artifacts (such as Stradivarius violins), and institutions (such as the birthplaces of U.S. Presidents), they tend not to think of astronomical observatories as part of cultural heritage-with a result that history is crumbling apace to the wrecking ball. In early October, the Antique Telescope Society convened a special 60-minute session discussing philosophical why's and practical how's of preserving astronomical assets (including historically significant telescopes, observatory buildings, auxiliary equipment used to make observations or calculate results, and libraries of books and papers). This paper will summarize the discussion's key insights - including the assessing and assigning of value to old vs. new telescopes, and the roles of politics, funding and fund-raising, publicity (positive and negative), education, use as a form of preservation, innovative solutions by private collectors (including "half-way houses" for homeless instruments), restoration vs. renovation, special problems facing very large telescopes, and lessons learned from both failures and success.

  3. Project Mercury - Monument

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1966-11-11

    S66-59963 (9 Nov. 1966) --- Monument at Pad 14 honoring Project Mercury. The Arabic number seven represents the seven original astronauts. The other figure is the astronomical symbol of the Planet Mercury. In background is the Gemini-12 Agena Target Docking Vehicle atop its Atlas launch vehicle at Cape Kennedy, Florida. Photo credit: NASA

  4. Isaac Newton and the astronomical refraction.

    PubMed

    Lehn, Waldemar H

    2008-12-01

    In a short interval toward the end of 1694, Isaac Newton developed two mathematical models for the theory of the astronomical refraction and calculated two refraction tables, but did not publish his theory. Much effort has been expended, starting with Biot in 1836, in the attempt to identify the methods and equations that Newton used. In contrast to previous work, a closed form solution is identified for the refraction integral that reproduces the table for his first model (in which density decays linearly with elevation). The parameters of his second model, which includes the exponential variation of pressure in an isothermal atmosphere, have also been identified by reproducing his results. The implication is clear that in each case Newton had derived exactly the correct equations for the astronomical refraction; furthermore, he was the first to do so.

  5. Design and Implement of Astronomical Cloud Computing Environment In China-VO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Changhua; Cui, Chenzhou; Mi, Linying; He, Boliang; Fan, Dongwei; Li, Shanshan; Yang, Sisi; Xu, Yunfei; Han, Jun; Chen, Junyi; Zhang, Hailong; Yu, Ce; Xiao, Jian; Wang, Chuanjun; Cao, Zihuang; Fan, Yufeng; Liu, Liang; Chen, Xiao; Song, Wenming; Du, Kangyu

    2017-06-01

    Astronomy cloud computing environment is a cyber-Infrastructure for Astronomy Research initiated by Chinese Virtual Observatory (China-VO) under funding support from NDRC (National Development and Reform commission) and CAS (Chinese Academy of Sciences). Based on virtualization technology, astronomy cloud computing environment was designed and implemented by China-VO team. It consists of five distributed nodes across the mainland of China. Astronomer can get compuitng and storage resource in this cloud computing environment. Through this environments, astronomer can easily search and analyze astronomical data collected by different telescopes and data centers , and avoid the large scale dataset transportation.

  6. Photonic ring resonator filters for astronomical OH suppression

    SciTech Connect

    Ellis, S. C.; Kuhlmann, S.; Kuehn, K.

    Ring resonators provide a means of filtering specific wavelengths from a waveguide, and optionally dropping the filtered wavelengths into a second waveguide. Both of these features are potentially useful for astronomical instruments. In this paper we focus on their use as notch filters to remove the signal from atmospheric OH emission lines from astronomical spectra. We derive the design requirements for ring resonators for OH suppression from theory and finite difference time domain simulations. We find that rings with small radii (< 10 μm) are required to provide an adequate free spectral range, leading to high index contrast materials suchmore » as Si and Si 3N 4. Critically coupled rings with high self-coupling coefficients should provide the necessary Q factors, suppression depth, and throughput for efficient OH suppression, but will require post-inscription tuning of the coupling and the resonant wavelengths. The overall prospects for the use of ring resonators in astronomical instruments is promising, provided efficient fibre-chip coupling can be achieved.« less

  7. Photonic ring resonator filters for astronomical OH suppression

    DOE PAGES

    Ellis, S. C.; Kuhlmann, S.; Kuehn, K.; ...

    2017-01-01

    Ring resonators provide a means of filtering specific wavelengths from a waveguide, and optionally dropping the filtered wavelengths into a second waveguide. Both of these features are potentially useful for astronomical instruments. In this paper we focus on their use as notch filters to remove the signal from atmospheric OH emission lines from astronomical spectra. We derive the design requirements for ring resonators for OH suppression from theory and finite difference time domain simulations. We find that rings with small radii (< 10 μm) are required to provide an adequate free spectral range, leading to high index contrast materials suchmore » as Si and Si 3N 4. Critically coupled rings with high self-coupling coefficients should provide the necessary Q factors, suppression depth, and throughput for efficient OH suppression, but will require post-inscription tuning of the coupling and the resonant wavelengths. The overall prospects for the use of ring resonators in astronomical instruments is promising, provided efficient fibre-chip coupling can be achieved.« less

  8. Grigor Narekatsi's astronomical insights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poghosyan, Samvel

    2015-07-01

    What stand out in the solid system of Gr. Narekatsi's naturalistic views are his astronomical insights on the material nature of light, its high speed and the Sun being composed of "material air". Especially surprising and fascinating are his views on stars and their clusters. What astronomers, including great Armenian academician V. Ambartsumian (scattering of stellar associations), would understand and prove with much difficulty thousand years later, Narekatsi predicted in the 10th century: "Stars appear and disappear untimely", "You who gather and scatter the speechless constellations, like a flock of sheep". Gr. Narekatsti's reformative views were manifested in all the spheres of the 10th century social life; he is a reformer of church life, great language constructor, innovator in literature and music, freethinker in philosophy and science. His ideology is the reflection of the 10th century Armenian Renaissance. During the 9th-10th centuries, great masses of Armenians, forced to migrate to the Balkans, took with them and spread reformative ideas. The forefather of the western science, which originated in the period of Reformation, is considered to be the great philosopher Nicholas of Cusa. The study of Gr. Narekatsti's logic and naturalistic views enables us to claim that Gr. Narekatsti is the great grandfather of European science.

  9. ALOHA—Astronomical Light Optical Hybrid Analysis - From experimental demonstrations to a MIR instrument proposal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmann, L.; Darré, P.; Szemendera, L.; Gomes, J. T.; Baudoin, R.; Ceus, D.; Brustlein, S.; Delage, L.; Grossard, L.; Reynaud, F.

    2018-04-01

    This paper gives an overview of the Astronomical Light Optical Hybrid Analysis (ALOHA) project dedicated to investigate a new method for high resolution imaging in mid infrared astronomy. This proposal aims to use a non-linear frequency conversion process to shift the thermal infrared radiation to a shorter wavelength domain compatible with proven technology such as guided optics and detectors. After a description of the principle, we summarise the evolution of our study from the high flux seminal experiments to the latest results in the photon counting regime.

  10. The Aosta Valley Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carbognani, A.

    2011-06-01

    OAVdA stands for Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley (Italy). The centre is located in the northwestern Italian Alps, near the border with France and Switzerland (Lat: 45° 47' 22" N, Long: 7° 28' 42" E), at 1675 m above sea level in the Saint-Barthélemy Valley and is managed by the "Fondazione Clément Fillietroz", with funding from local administrations. OAVdA was opened in 2003 as a centre for the popularization of astronomy but, since 2006, the main activity has been scientific research, as a consequence of an official cooperation agreement established with the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF). In 2009, a planetarium was built near the observatory with a 10-meter dome and 67 seats, which is currently used for educational astronomy. In the year 2009 about 15,200 people visited OAVdA and the planetarium. The staff in 2010 was made up of 12 people, including a scientific team of 5 physicists and astronomers on ESF (European Social Fund) grants and permanently residing at the observatory.

  11. Astronomical Methods in Aerial Navigation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beij, K Hilding

    1925-01-01

    The astronomical method of determining position is universally used in marine navigation and may also be of service in aerial navigation. The practical application of the method, however, must be modified and adapted to conform to the requirements of aviation. Much of this work of adaptation has already been accomplished, but being scattered through various technical journals in a number of languages, is not readily available. This report is for the purpose of collecting under one cover such previous work as appears to be of value to the aerial navigator, comparing instruments and methods, indicating the best practice, and suggesting future developments. The various methods of determining position and their application and value are outlined, and a brief resume of the theory of the astronomical method is given. Observation instruments are described in detail. A complete discussion of the reduction of observations follows, including a rapid method of finding position from the altitudes of two stars. Maps and map cases are briefly considered. A bibliography of the subject is appended.

  12. LGBT Workplace Issues for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kay, Laura E.; Danner, R.; Sellgren, K.; Dixon, V.; GLBTQastro

    2011-01-01

    Federal Equal Employment Opportunity laws and regulations do not provide protection from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or gender expression. Sexual minority astronomers (including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people; LGBT) can face additional challenges at school and work. Studies show that LGBT students on many campuses report experiences of harassment. Cities, counties, and states may or may not have statutes to protect against such discrimination. There is wide variation in how states and insurance plans handle legal and medical issues for transgender people. Federal law does not acknowledge same-sex partners, including those legally married in the U.S. or in other countries. Immigration rules in the U.S. (and many other, but not all) countries do not recognize same-sex partners for visas, employment, etc. State `defense of marriage act' laws have been used to remove existing domestic partner benefits at some institutions, or benefits can disappear with a change in governor. LGBT astronomers who change schools, institutions, or countries during their career may experience significant differences in their legal, medical, and marital status.

  13. Recollections of life as a student and a young astronomer in Germany in the 1920s

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brück, Hermann A.; Brück, Mary T.

    2000-12-01

    The author of this essay, Hermann Alexander Brück, Emeritus Professor of Astronomy at the University of Edinburgh and former Astronomer Royal for Scotland, died on 4 March 2000 in his 95th year. He was the last of his generation of astronomers in both Germany and Britain, and among the oldest members, if not the oldest, of the Royal Astronomical Society and of the Astronomische Gesellschaft. Hermann Brück was born in Berlin in 1905 and, as he recounts below, received his education at the Universities of Kiel, Bonn and Munich in 1924-1928. To the end of his life he looked back on his student days in Munich as the most profitable and exciting he ever experienced. From Munich he began his astronomical career at the Potsdam Astrophysical Observatory. These, too, were happy days, destined, however, to be blighted within a few years by the rise of Nazism. In 1936 Brück left Germany, and obtained a temporary Research Assistantship at the Vatican Observatory. From there he went a year later to Cambridge, rising to the rank of John Couch Adams Astronomer and Assistant Director of the Observatory. In 1947, in response to an invitation from Eamon de Valera, then Taoiseach (Prime Minister) of Ireland, he moved to Dublin where he undertook the task of re-founding the defunct Dunsink Observatory under the auspices of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies. He moved from Dublin to the Royal Observatory Edinburgh in 1957, taking up the combined post of Astronomer Royal for Scotland and Regius Professor of Astronomy in the University of Edinburgh. He retired in 1975 at the age of 70. Always interested in history, he occupied himself in his retirement with various historical projects. These included writing the histories of the Royal Observatory Edinburgh (The Story of Astronomy in Edinburgh, Edinburgh 1983) and of the earlier Dun Echt Observatory in Aberdeenshire (Lord Crawford's Observatory at Dun Echt 1872-1892, Vistas in Astronomy 35, 1992) as well as a record of his own

  14. Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) project: progress and status after 2 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meiring, Jacobus G.; Buckley, David A. H.; Lomberg, Michael C.; Stobie, Robert S.

    2003-02-01

    The Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) is a 10-m class optical/IR segmented mirror telescope based on the groundbreaking, low cost, Hobby-Eberly Telescope (HET) design. Approval to construct and operate SALT, which will be the largest single optical telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, was given by the South African Government in November 1999, after sufficient guarantees of matching funding from international partners were secured. Facility construction started in January 2001, and SALT is due to start operations by December 2004. SALT will enable a quantum leap in astronomical research capability in Southern Africa, and indeed the continent, where currently the largest telescope is a modest 1.9-m, dating to the 1940s. A substantial amount of design work for SALT has been completed, sourced from multiple suppliers, with ~60% South African content. South African industry is well equipped to handle the construction of most of the telescope, the exceptions being the glass ceramic mirror blanks (from LZOS in Russia), the polishing and ion figuring of these (Eastman Kodak in the USA), and fabrication of the four-element spherical aberration corrector (SAGEM in France). This paper will present (1) the scientific requirements, (2) the specified performance of SALT, (3) the basic design, with emphasis on the innovative modifications to the HET design that enable significantly improved performance, (4) the progress and status of the project, currently in its construction phase, (5) the first generation instrument suite, (6) the management and organisation of the project and (7) the international partnership in SALT.

  15. The Astronomical Low-Frequency Array

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, D. L.; Allen, R. J.; Blume, W. H.; Desch, M. M.; Erickson, W. C.; Kaiser, M. L.; Kassim, N. E.; Kuiper, T. B. H.; Mahoney, M. J.; Marsh, K. A.; hide

    1996-01-01

    An array of satellites is proposed to make astronomic observations in the low frequency range of a few tens of MHz down to roughly 100 kHz, a range that cannot be observed through the ionosphere. The array would be in a solar orbit to avoid radio interference from Earth and to simplify trajectory tracking and control.

  16. Recent Advances for LGBT Astronomers in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dixon, William V.; Rigby, Jane; Oppenheimer, Rebecca

    2015-08-01

    The legal environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) astronomers in the United States has changed dramatically in recent years. In 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which had barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages, was unconstitutional. This decision particularly affects astronomers, since astronomers in the U.S. are more likely than the general population to be foreign nationals, to have a foreign-born spouse, or to work for the federal government. In 2014, the Attorney General directed the Department of Justice to take the position in litigation that the protection of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 extends to claims of discrimination based on an individual’s gender identity, including transgender status. Title VII makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate in the employment of an individual “because of such individual’s... sex,” among other protected characteristics. As of March 2015, more than 70% of the population lives in states that recognize same-sex marriage, and the Supreme Court is expected to rule on the constitutionality of the remaining same-sex marriage bans during the current term. In this poster, we discuss these advances and their implications for the personal and professional lives of LGBT astronomers across the United States.

  17. How did the Supreme Court ruling on DOMA affect astronomers?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rigby, Jane R.; The AAS Working Group on LGBTIQ Equality

    2014-01-01

    In June 2013, the United States Supreme Court ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was unconstitutional. Section 3 had barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages. The decision in United States v. Windsor, made headlines around the world, and particularly affected astronomers, since astronomers in the US are more likely than the general population to be foreign nationals, to have a foreign-born spouse, or to work for the federal government. In this poster, we highlight some of the real-world ways that the Windsor case has affected US astronomers and our profession. Bi-national couples can now apply for green cards granting permanent residency. Scientists who work for the federal government, including NASA and the NSF, can now obtain health insurance for a same-sex spouse. From taxes to death benefits, health insurance to daycare, immigration to ethics laws, the end of S3 of DOMA has had profoundly improved the lives of US scientists who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT). Here we, highlight several real-world examples of how DOMA's demise has improved the lives and careers of US astronomer.

  18. Conceptual Astronomy Knowledge among Amateur Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berendsen, Margaret L.

    Amateur astronomers regularly serve as informal astronomy educators for their communities. This research inquires into the level of knowledge of basic astronomy concepts among amateur astronomers and examines factors related to amateur astronomy that affect that knowledge. Using the concept questions from the Astronomy Diagnostic Test Version 2, an online survey was developed as an assessment. In particular, astronomy club members with at least some college-level astronomy education score substantially higher on the assessment (mean score: 85) than do college undergraduates after taking their first astronomy course (mean score: 47). Astronomy club members scored up to 17% higher than unaffiliated amateurs, an indication that regular contact with like-minded hobbyists improves basic knowledge. Proportionally more astronomy club members report doing outreach than do unaffiliated amateurs (87% vs. 46%). It appears that those who are likely to be more knowledgeable are also those doing more outreach.

  19. Exploratory visualization of astronomical data on ultra-high-resolution wall displays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pietriga, Emmanuel; del Campo, Fernando; Ibsen, Amanda; Primet, Romain; Appert, Caroline; Chapuis, Olivier; Hempel, Maren; Muñoz, Roberto; Eyheramendy, Susana; Jordan, Andres; Dole, Hervé

    2016-07-01

    Ultra-high-resolution wall displays feature a very high pixel density over a large physical surface, which makes them well-suited to the collaborative, exploratory visualization of large datasets. We introduce FITS-OW, an application designed for such wall displays, that enables astronomers to navigate in large collections of FITS images, query astronomical databases, and display detailed, complementary data and documents about multiple sources simultaneously. We describe how astronomers interact with their data using both the wall's touchsensitive surface and handheld devices. We also report on the technical challenges we addressed in terms of distributed graphics rendering and data sharing over the computer clusters that drive wall displays.

  20. ARNICA, the Arcetri near-infrared camera: Astronomical performance assessment.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunt, L. K.; Lisi, F.; Testi, L.; Baffa, C.; Borelli, S.; Maiolino, R.; Moriondo, G.; Stanga, R. M.

    1996-01-01

    The Arcetri near-infrared camera ARNICA was built as a users' instrument for the Infrared Telescope at Gornergrat (TIRGO), and is based on a 256x256 NICMOS 3 detector. In this paper, we discuss ARNICA's optical and astronomical performance at the TIRGO and at the William Herschel Telescope on La Palma. Optical performance is evaluated in terms of plate scale, distortion, point spread function, and ghosting. Astronomical performance is characterized by camera efficiency, sensitivity, and spatial uniformity of the photometry.

  1. Astronomical Instrumentation Systems Quality Management Planning: AISQMP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldbaum, Jesse

    2017-06-01

    The capability of small aperture astronomical instrumentation systems (AIS) to make meaningful scientific contributions has never been better. The purpose of AIS quality management planning (AISQMP) is to ensure the quality of these contributions such that they are both valid and reliable. The first step involved with AISQMP is to specify objective quality measures not just for the AIS final product, but also for the instrumentation used in its production. The next step is to set up a process to track these measures and control for any unwanted variation. The final step is continual effort applied to reducing variation and obtaining measured values near optimal theoretical performance. This paper provides an overview of AISQMP while focusing on objective quality measures applied to astronomical imaging systems.

  2. How Do Astronomers Share Data? Reliability and Persistence of Datasets Linked in AAS Publications and a Qualitative Study of Data Practices among US Astronomers

    PubMed Central

    Pepe, Alberto; Goodman, Alyssa; Muench, August; Crosas, Merce; Erdmann, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    We analyze data sharing practices of astronomers over the past fifteen years. An analysis of URL links embedded in papers published by the American Astronomical Society reveals that the total number of links included in the literature rose dramatically from 1997 until 2005, when it leveled off at around 1500 per year. The analysis also shows that the availability of linked material decays with time: in 2011, 44% of links published a decade earlier, in 2001, were broken. A rough analysis of link types reveals that links to data hosted on astronomers' personal websites become unreachable much faster than links to datasets on curated institutional sites. To gauge astronomers' current data sharing practices and preferences further, we performed in-depth interviews with 12 scientists and online surveys with 173 scientists, all at a large astrophysical research institute in the United States: the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. Both the in-depth interviews and the online survey indicate that, in principle, there is no philosophical objection to data-sharing among astronomers at this institution. Key reasons that more data are not presently shared more efficiently in astronomy include: the difficulty of sharing large data sets; over reliance on non-robust, non-reproducible mechanisms for sharing data (e.g. emailing it); unfamiliarity with options that make data-sharing easier (faster) and/or more robust; and, lastly, a sense that other researchers would not want the data to be shared. We conclude with a short discussion of a new effort to implement an easy-to-use, robust, system for data sharing in astronomy, at theastrodata.org, and we analyze the uptake of that system to-date. PMID:25165807

  3. How do astronomers share data? Reliability and persistence of datasets linked in AAS publications and a qualitative study of data practices among US astronomers.

    PubMed

    Pepe, Alberto; Goodman, Alyssa; Muench, August; Crosas, Merce; Erdmann, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    We analyze data sharing practices of astronomers over the past fifteen years. An analysis of URL links embedded in papers published by the American Astronomical Society reveals that the total number of links included in the literature rose dramatically from 1997 until 2005, when it leveled off at around 1500 per year. The analysis also shows that the availability of linked material decays with time: in 2011, 44% of links published a decade earlier, in 2001, were broken. A rough analysis of link types reveals that links to data hosted on astronomers' personal websites become unreachable much faster than links to datasets on curated institutional sites. To gauge astronomers' current data sharing practices and preferences further, we performed in-depth interviews with 12 scientists and online surveys with 173 scientists, all at a large astrophysical research institute in the United States: the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. Both the in-depth interviews and the online survey indicate that, in principle, there is no philosophical objection to data-sharing among astronomers at this institution. Key reasons that more data are not presently shared more efficiently in astronomy include: the difficulty of sharing large data sets; over reliance on non-robust, non-reproducible mechanisms for sharing data (e.g. emailing it); unfamiliarity with options that make data-sharing easier (faster) and/or more robust; and, lastly, a sense that other researchers would not want the data to be shared. We conclude with a short discussion of a new effort to implement an easy-to-use, robust, system for data sharing in astronomy, at theastrodata.org, and we analyze the uptake of that system to-date.

  4. How Do Astronomers Share Data? Reliability and Persistence of Datasets Linked in AAS Publications and a Qualitative Study of Data Practices among US Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pepe, Alberto; Goodman, Alyssa; Muench, August; Crosas, Merce; Erdmann, Christopher

    2014-08-01

    We analyze data sharing practices of astronomers over the past fifteen years. An analysis of URL links embedded in papers published by the American Astronomical Society reveals that the total number of links included in the literature rose dramatically from 1997 until 2005, when it leveled off at around 1500 per year. The analysis also shows that the availability of linked material decays with time: in 2011, 44% of links published a decade earlier, in 2001, were broken. A rough analysis of link types reveals that links to data hosted on astronomers' personal websites become unreachable much faster than links to datasets on curated institutional sites. To gauge astronomers' current data sharing practices and preferences further, we performed in-depth interviews with 12 scientists and online surveys with 173 scientists, all at a large astrophysical research institute in the United States: the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. Both the in-depth interviews and the online survey indicate that, in principle, there is no philosophical objection to data-sharing among astronomers at this institution. Key reasons that more data are not presently shared more efficiently in astronomy include: the difficulty of sharing large data sets; over reliance on non-robust, non-reproducible mechanisms for sharing data (e.g. emailing it); unfamiliarity with options that make data-sharing easier (faster) and/or more robust; and, lastly, a sense that other researchers would not want the data to be shared. We conclude with a short discussion of a new effort to implement an easy-to-use, robust, system for data sharing in astronomy, at theastrodata.org, and we analyze the uptake of that system to-date.

  5. The Virtual Telescope Project: Enjoy the Universe from your desktop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masi, G.

    2008-06-01

    The Virtual Telescope is a new robotic facility that makes possible for people worldwide to participate in real-time observations of the sky. Complete scientific instruments are made available, matching the needs of researchers, students and amateur astronomers. Instruments are controlled live and in real time by the remote user while qualified assistance is made available from a professional astronomer, to assist and address the observing experience. The project consists of several remote controlled and independent telescopes, including solar scopes for daytime observations. Their diameters range from 40-360 mm. The project and the technology involved are presented here, as well as the peculiar benefits for students and other users.

  6. Image-Processing Techniques for the Creation of Presentation-Quality Astronomical Images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rector, Travis A.; Levay, Zoltan G.; Frattare, Lisa M.; English, Jayanne; Pu'uohau-Pummill, Kirk

    2007-02-01

    The quality of modern astronomical data and the agility of current image-processing software enable the visualization of data in a way that exceeds the traditional definition of an astronomical image. Two developments in particular have led to a fundamental change in how astronomical images can be assembled. First, the availability of high-quality multiwavelength and narrowband data allow for images that do not correspond to the wavelength sensitivity of the human eye, thereby introducing ambiguity in the usage and interpretation of color. Second, many image-processing software packages now use a layering metaphor that allows for any number of astronomical data sets to be combined into a color image. With this technique, images with as many as eight data sets have been produced. Each data set is intensity-scaled and colorized independently, creating an immense parameter space that can be used to assemble the image. Since such images are intended for data visualization, scaling and color schemes must be chosen that best illustrate the science. A practical guide is presented on how to use the layering metaphor to generate publication-ready astronomical images from as many data sets as desired. A methodology is also given on how to use intensity scaling, color, and composition to create contrasts in an image that highlight the scientific detail. Examples of image creation are discussed.

  7. Ernesto Vasconcellos' Astronomia Photographica: the earliest popular book on astronomical photography?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonifácio, Vitor; Malaquias, Isabel; Fernandes, João

    2008-07-01

    Portugal, albeit with its own cultural distinctiveness, was not immune to the ideologies permeating nineteenth-century European society, in particular those concerning the social advantages of science and science popularisation. The country's high illiteracy rate hampered but did not prevent several popularisation efforts, which were usually led by professors and armed forces officers. In 1886 Astronomia Photographica (Astronomical Photography), a book popularising astrophotography, was published in Lisbon as part of a collection entitled People and Schools Library. The book seems an odd editorial choice given that, at the time, Portugal's major astronomical institutions pursued astrometric research and there was a virtual absence in the country of amateur astronomers. International astronomical developments, the author's interest in the scientific applications of photography and even the editorial timing are likely explanations for the publication of Astronomia Photographica, but we believe a definitive answer is still not available. The style of Astronomia Photographica is historical and informative, without being technical; clearly it is not a ‘hands-on guide’. The contents of the book show that the author, Ernesto Júlio de Carvalho e Vasconcellos, a naval officer, contacted several experts and was aware of the latest developments in astronomical photography. What makes this a unique book is its content, and its inclusion in a popularisation collection with an exceptionally high circulation at such an early time.

  8. Building a VO-compliant Radio Astronomical DAta Model for Single-dish radio telescopes (RADAMS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santander-Vela, Juan de Dios; García, Emilio; Leon, Stephane; Espigares, Victor; Ruiz, José Enrique; Verdes-Montenegro, Lourdes; Solano, Enrique

    2012-11-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is becoming the de-facto standard for astronomical data publication. However, the number of radio astronomical archives is still low in general, and even lower is the number of radio astronomical data available through the VO. In order to facilitate the building of new radio astronomical archives, easing at the same time their interoperability with VO framework, we have developed a VO-compliant data model which provides interoperable data semantics for radio data. That model, which we call the Radio Astronomical DAta Model for Single-dish (RADAMS) has been built using standards of (and recommendations from) the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). This article describes the RADAMS and its components, including archived entities and their relationships to VO metadata. We show that by using IVOA principles and concepts, the effort needed for both the development of the archives and their VO compatibility has been lowered, and the joint development of two radio astronomical archives have been possible. We plan to adapt RADAMS to be able to deal with interferometry data in the future.

  9. Astronomers Discover Fastest-Spinning Pulsar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-01-01

    discovered in 1982. For reference, the fastest speeds of common kitchen blenders are 250-500 Hz. The scientists say the object's fast rotation speed means that it cannot be any larger than about 20 miles across. According to Hessels, "If it were any larger, material from the surface would be flung into orbit around the star." The scientists' calculation assumed that the neutron star contains less than two times the mass of the Sun, an assumption that is consistent with the masses of all known neutron stars. The spinning pulsar has a companion star that orbits it once every 26 hours. The companion passes in front of the pulsar, eclipsing the pulsar about 40 percent of the time. The long eclipse period, probably due to bloating of the companion, makes it difficult for the astronomers to learn details of the orbital configuration that would allow them to precisely measure the masses of the pulsar and its companion. "If we could pin down these masses more precisely, we could then get a better limit on the size of the pulsar. That, in turn, would then give us a better figure for the true density inside the neutron star," explained Ingrid Stairs, an assistant professor at the University of British Columbia and another collaborator on the work. Competing theoretical models for the types and distributions of elementary particles inside neutron stars make widely different predictions about the pressure and density of such an object. "We want observational data that shows which models fit the reality of nature," Hessels said. If the scientists can't use PSR J1748-2446ad to do that, they are hopeful some of its near neighbors will yield the data they seek. Using the GBT, the astronomers so far have found 30 new fast "millisecond pulsars" in the cluster Terzan 5, making 33 pulsars known in the cluster in total. This is the largest number of such pulsars ever found in a single globular cluster. Dense globular clusters of stars are excellent places to find fast-rotating millisecond

  10. A new astronomical dating of Odysseus return to Ithaca.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papamarinopoulos, St. P.; Preka-Papadema, P.; Antonopoulos, P.; Mitropetrou, H.; Tsironi, A.; Mitropetros, P.

    The annular solar eclipse, of 30 October 1207 B.C. (Julian Day-JD 1280869), calculated by NASA together with the analysis of the weather's and the environment's description (long nights, plants, animals and peoples' habits) and the astronomical data (guiding constellations and Venus in the east horizon) mentioned by Homer in the epic, constitute an autumn return of Odysseus to Ithaca five days before the above characterized day. The latter offers a precise astronomical dating of the event and dates the legendary Trojan War's end as well.

  11. Australian sites of astronomical heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevenson, T.; Lomb, N.

    2015-03-01

    The heritage of astronomy in Australia has proven an effective communication medium. By interpreting science as a social and cultural phenomenon new light is thrown on challenges, such as the dispersal of instruments and problems identifying contemporary astronomy heritage. Astronomers are asked to take note and to consider the communication of astronomy now and in the future through a tangible heritage legacy.

  12. Visiting Astronomers Travel Guide | CTIO

    Science.gov Websites

    please advise Ximena Herreros at the time that you initiate travel plans, if your stay in Chile will , well in advance of their travel time, regarding current visa requirements for Chile. back to top Visiting Astronomers Travel Guide Director's Discretionary (DD) Time CTIO 2016 Ephemeris ToO Policy CTIO

  13. Factors Contributing to Amateur Astronomers' Involvement in Education and Public Outreach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yocco, Victor; Jones, Eric C.; Storksdieck, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Amateur astronomers play a critical role engaging the general public in astronomy. The role of individual and club-related factors is explored using data from two surveys (Survey 1 N = 1142; Survey 2 N = 1242) of amateur astronomers. Analysis suggests that formal or informal training in astronomy, age, club membership, length of club membership,…

  14. BAO Plate Archive Project: Digitization, Electronic Database and Research Programmes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.; Abrahamyan, H. V.; Andreasyan, H. R.; Azatyan, N. M.; Farmanyan, S. V.; Gigoyan, K. S.; Gyulzadyan, M. V.; Khachatryan, K. G.; Knyazyan, A. V.; Kostandyan, G. R.; Mikayelyan, G. A.; Nikoghosyan, E. H.; Paronyan, G. M.; Vardanyan, A. V.

    2016-06-01

    The most important part of the astronomical observational heritage are astronomical plate archives created on the basis of numerous observations at many observatories. Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO) plate archive consists of 37,000 photographic plates and films, obtained at 2.6m telescope, 1m and 0.5m Schmidt type and other smaller telescopes during 1947-1991. In 2002-2005, the famous Markarian Survey (also called First Byurakan Survey, FBS) 1874 plates were digitized and the Digitized FBS (DFBS) was created. New science projects have been conducted based on these low-dispersion spectroscopic material. A large project on the whole BAO Plate Archive digitization, creation of electronic database and its scientific usage was started in 2015. A Science Program Board is created to evaluate the observing material, to investigate new possibilities and to propose new projects based on the combined usage of these observations together with other world databases. The Executing Team consists of 11 astronomers and 2 computer scientists and will use 2 EPSON Perfection V750 Pro scanners for the digitization, as well as Armenian Virtual Observatory (ArVO) database will be used to accommodate all new data. The project will run during 3 years in 2015-2017 and the final result will be an electronic database and online interactive sky map to be used for further research projects, mainly including high proper motion stars, variable objects and Solar System bodies.

  15. Application of Astronomical Compositions in Small Architectural Forms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haykazun, Ani

    2016-12-01

    The small architectural forms are an important part of the Armenian architecture. Their compositions are diverse including quadrihedral structures, cross-stones, monuments, gravestones, memorial stones, etc. From ancient times to the late middle ages, and up to themodern small architectural forms, there are many decorative elements of astronomical character. Among them, one can more often see stars, the sun, the moon, the sky, the planets, the sign of eternity and other symbolic decorative images, which play a major role in the formation of the artistic image of the architectural compositions. The analysis of application of astronomical compositions will help more comprehensively introduce the compositional peculiarities of the small architectural forms.

  16. Astronomical calibration of the geological timescale: closing the middle Eocene gap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westerhold, T.; Röhl, U.; Frederichs, T.; Bohaty, S. M.; Zachos, J. C.

    2015-09-01

    To explore cause and consequences of past climate change, very accurate age models such as those provided by the astronomical timescale (ATS) are needed. Beyond 40 million years the accuracy of the ATS critically depends on the correctness of orbital models and radioisotopic dating techniques. Discrepancies in the age dating of sedimentary successions and the lack of suitable records spanning the middle Eocene have prevented development of a continuous astronomically calibrated geological timescale for the entire Cenozoic Era. We now solve this problem by constructing an independent astrochronological stratigraphy based on Earth's stable 405 kyr eccentricity cycle between 41 and 48 million years ago (Ma) with new data from deep-sea sedimentary sequences in the South Atlantic Ocean. This new link completes the Paleogene astronomical timescale and confirms the intercalibration of radioisotopic and astronomical dating methods back through the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM, 55.930 Ma) and the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary (66.022 Ma). Coupling of the Paleogene 405 kyr cyclostratigraphic frameworks across the middle Eocene further paves the way for extending the ATS into the Mesozoic.

  17. OpenCluster: A Flexible Distributed Computing Framework for Astronomical Data Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Shoulin; Wang, Feng; Deng, Hui; Liu, Cuiyin; Dai, Wei; Liang, Bo; Mei, Ying; Shi, Congming; Liu, Yingbo; Wu, Jingping

    2017-02-01

    The volume of data generated by modern astronomical telescopes is extremely large and rapidly growing. However, current high-performance data processing architectures/frameworks are not well suited for astronomers because of their limitations and programming difficulties. In this paper, we therefore present OpenCluster, an open-source distributed computing framework to support rapidly developing high-performance processing pipelines of astronomical big data. We first detail the OpenCluster design principles and implementations and present the APIs facilitated by the framework. We then demonstrate a case in which OpenCluster is used to resolve complex data processing problems for developing a pipeline for the Mingantu Ultrawide Spectral Radioheliograph. Finally, we present our OpenCluster performance evaluation. Overall, OpenCluster provides not only high fault tolerance and simple programming interfaces, but also a flexible means of scaling up the number of interacting entities. OpenCluster thereby provides an easily integrated distributed computing framework for quickly developing a high-performance data processing system of astronomical telescopes and for significantly reducing software development expenses.

  18. Astronomical Data Bank: The Solar System.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morrison, David

    1983-01-01

    Provided are two tables which contain the latest orbital and physical characteristics of the planets and their main satellites. These tables are part of a series of information materials available from the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 1290 24th Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94122. (JN)

  19. Nathaniel Bowditch, Early American Amateur Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Thomas R.

    1984-10-01

    Nathaniel Bowditch had very successful careers as a seaman/ship's master and as an actuary/insurance executive. In addition he managed to make very substantial contributions to mathematics and astronomy. Bowditch is therefore important as one of the earliest significant amateur astronomers in the United States.

  20. The Impact of the Qur'anic Conception of Astronomical Phenomena on Islamic Civilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, I. A.

    Discussions of astronomical phenomena in religious texts usually center around either their literal astronomical content or their symbolic significance. We shall instead consider the use of frequent references to astronomical phenomena in the Qur'an as exhortations to a worldview that ushered in the modern era. The Qur'anic conception of astronomical phenomena had a critical impact on Islamic civilization and the civilizations that followed because it introduced and mandated the adoption of certain attitudes. Among these were a greater respect for empirical data than was common in the preceding Greek civilization and an insistence that the Universe is ruled by a single set of laws. Both of these were rooted in the Islamic concept of tawhîd, the unity of God.

  1. Recruitment and Retention of LGBTIQ Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dixon, William Van Dyke

    2012-01-01

    While lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, or questioning (LGBTIQ) astronomers face many of the same workplace challenges as women and racial/ethnic minorities, from implicit bias to overt discrimination, other challenges are unique to this group. An obvious example is the absence at many institutions of health insurance and other benefits for the same-sex domestic partners of their employees. More subtle is the psychological toll paid by LGBTIQ astronomers who remain "in the closet," self-censoring every statement about their personal lives. Paradoxically, the culture of the physical sciences, in which sexuality, gender identity, and gender expression are considered irrelevant, can discourage their discussion, further isolating LGBTIQ researchers. Addressing these challenges is not just a matter of fairness; it is an essential tool in the recruitment and retention of the brightest researchers and in assuring their productivity. We will discuss these issues and what individuals and departments can to make their institutions more welcoming to their LGBTIQ colleagues.

  2. Marshal Wrubel and the Electronic Computer as an Astronomical Instrument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mutschlecner, J. P.; Olsen, K. H.

    1998-05-01

    In 1960, Marshal H. Wrubel, professor of astrophysics at Indiana University, published an influential review paper under the title, "The Electronic Computer as an Astronomical Instrument." This essay pointed out the enormous potential of the electronic computer as an instrument of observational and theoretical research in astronomy, illustrated programming concepts, and made specific recommendations for the increased use of computers in astronomy. He noted that, with a few scattered exceptions, computer use by the astronomical community had heretofore been "timid and sporadic." This situation was to improve dramatically in the next few years. By the late 1950s, general-purpose, high-speed, "mainframe" computers were just emerging from the experimental, developmental stage, but few were affordable by or available to academic and research institutions not closely associated with large industrial or national defense programs. Yet by 1960 Wrubel had spent a decade actively pioneering and promoting the imaginative application of electronic computation within the astronomical community. Astronomy upper-level undergraduate and graduate students at Indiana were introduced to computing, and Ph.D. candidates who he supervised applied computer techniques to problems in theoretical astrophysics. He wrote an early textbook on programming, taught programming classes, and helped establish and direct the Research Computing Center at Indiana, later named the Wrubel Computing Center in his honor. He and his students created a variety of algorithms and subroutines and exchanged these throughout the astronomical community by distributing the Astronomical Computation News Letter. Nationally as well as internationally, Wrubel actively cooperated with other groups interested in computing applications for theoretical astrophysics, often through his position as secretary of the IAU commission on Stellar Constitution.

  3. Interconnecting astronomical networks: evolving from single networks to meta-networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, R. R.; Allan, A.; Evans, S.; Vestrand, W. T.; Wren, J.; Wozniak, P.

    2006-06-01

    Over the past four years we have seen continued advancement in network technology and how those technologies are beginning to enable astronomical science. Even though some sociological aspects are hindering full cooperation between most observatories and telescopes outside of their academic or institutional connections, an unprecedented step during the summer of 2005 was taken towards creating a world-wide interconnection of astronomical assets. The Telescope Alert Operations Network System (TALONS), a centralized server/client bi-directional network developed and operated by Los Alamos National Laboratory, integrated one of its network nodes with a node from the eScience Telescopes for Astronomical Research (eSTAR), a peer-to-peer agent based network developed and operated by The University of Exeter. Each network can act independently, providing support for their direct clients, and by interconnection provide local clients with access to; outside telescope systems, software tools unavailable locally, and the ability to utilize assets far more efficiently, thereby enabling science on a world-wide scale. In this paper we will look at the evolution of these independent networks into the worlds first heterogeneous telescope network and where this may take astronomy in the future. We will also examine those key elements necessary to providing universal communication between diverse astronomical networks.

  4. Astronomical diaries and observations from the time of the Great War

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shanklin, J. D.

    2003-10-01

    My great grandfather Harry Thomas, of Llandudno, kept diaries for many years. Only those for 1913 to 1916 survive, though they contain passing references to earlier volumes. Items of astronomical interest are presented here. Harry's brother, Dr Bernard Thomas (1868?1935 May 13), at this time lived in Hobart, Tasmania and was a more serious amateur astronomer.

  5. Research in space physics at the University of Iowa. [astronomical observatories, spaceborne astronomy, satellite observation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vanallen, J. A.

    1974-01-01

    Various research projects in space physics are summarized. Emphasis is placed on: (1) the study of energetic particles in outer space and their relationships to electric, magnetic, and electromagnetic fields associated with the earth, the sun, the moon, the planets, and interplanetary medium; (2) observational work on satellites of the earth and the moon, and planetary and interplanetary spacecraft; (3) phenomenological analysis and interpretation; (4) observational work by ground based radio-astronomical and optical techniques; and (5) theoretical problems in plasma physics. Specific fields of current investigations are summarized.

  6. Connecting the time domain community with the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Graham, Matthew J.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Donalek, Ciro; Drake, Andrew J.; Mahabal, Ashish A.; Plante, Raymond L.; Kantor, Jeffrey; Good, John C.

    2012-09-01

    The time domain has been identied as one of the most important areas of astronomical research for the next decade. The Virtual Observatory is in the vanguard with dedicated tools and services that enable and facilitate the discovery, dissemination and analysis of time domain data. These range in scope from rapid notications of time-critical astronomical transients to annotating long-term variables with the latest modelling results. In this paper, we will review the prior art in these areas and focus on the capabilities that the VAO is bringing to bear in support of time domain science. In particular, we will focus on the issues involved with the heterogeneous collections of (ancilllary) data associated with astronomical transients, and the time series characterization and classication tools required by the next generation of sky surveys, such as LSST and SKA.

  7. Harold F. Weaver: California Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shields, J. C.

    1993-05-01

    This talk will give an overview of an oral history recently completed with Harold F. Weaver, Professor Emeritus of Astronomy at the University of California at Berkeley. Weaver grew up in California and studied as an undergraduate at Berkeley, where he also pursued graduate work incorporating research at Lick and Mount Wilson Observatories. After pursuing postdoctoral research at Yerkes Observatory and war work in Cambridge (Massachusetts) and Berkeley, Weaver was appointed to the staff of Lick Observatory. In 1951 he joined the faculty at Berkeley, where he later played a major role in founding Hat Creek Radio Observatory. As Director of the Berkeley Radio Astronomy Laboratory, Weaver oversaw construction of the 85-foot telescope at Hat Creek, which is the subject of a special session at this meeting. Two aspects of Weaver's career will be highlighted. The first is the somewhat unusual and very successful transition in Weaver's observational research from emphasis on classical photographic techniques at optical wavelengths to use of emerging radio technology for the study of Galactic structure. The second is service provided by Weaver to the American Astronomical Society and Astronomical Society of the Pacific at several key junctures in the development of both organizations.

  8. Astroinformatics, data mining and the future of astronomical research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brescia, Massimo; Longo, Giuseppe

    2013-08-01

    Astronomy, as many other scientific disciplines, is facing a true data deluge which is bound to change both the praxis and the methodology of every day research work. The emerging field of astroinformatics, while on the one end appears crucial to face the technological challenges, on the other is opening new exciting perspectives for new astronomical discoveries through the implementation of advanced data mining procedures. The complexity of astronomical data and the variety of scientific problems, however, call for innovative algorithms and methods as well as for an extreme usage of ICT technologies.

  9. A Model for Data Citation in Astronomical Research Using Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novacescu, Jenny; Peek, Joshua E. G.; Weissman, Sarah; Fleming, Scott W.; Levay, Karen; Fraser, Elizabeth

    2018-05-01

    Standardizing and incentivizing the use of digital object identifiers (DOIs) to aggregate and identify both data analyzed and data generated by a research project will advance the field of astronomy to match best practices in other research fields like geoscience and medicine. An increase in the use of DOIs will prepare the discipline for changing expectations among funding agencies and publishers, who increasingly expect accurate and thorough data citation to accompany scientific outputs. The use of DOIs ensures a robust, sustainable, and interoperable approach to data citation in which due credit is given to the researchers and institutions who produce and maintain the primary data. We describe in this work the advantages of DOIs for data citation and best practices for integrating a DOI service in an astronomical archive. We report on a pilot project carried out in collaboration with AAS journals. During the course of the 1.5-year long pilot, over 75% of submitting authors opted to use the integrated DOI service to clearly identify data analyzed during their research project when prompted at the time of paper submission.

  10. Free-space laser communication system with rapid acquisition based on astronomical telescopes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jianmin; Lv, Junyi; Zhao, Guang; Wang, Gang

    2015-08-10

    The general structure of a free-space optical (FSO) communication system based on astronomical telescopes is proposed. The light path for astronomical observation and for communication can be easily switched. A separate camera is used as a star sensor to determine the pointing direction of the optical terminal's antenna. The new system exhibits rapid acquisition and is widely applicable in various astronomical telescope systems and wavelengths. We present a detailed analysis of the acquisition time, which can be decreased by one order of magnitude compared with traditional optical communication systems. Furthermore, we verify software algorithms and tracking accuracy.

  11. Astronomical Data Processing Using SciQL, an SQL Based Query Language for Array Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Y.; Scheers, B.; Kersten, M.; Ivanova, M.; Nes, N.

    2012-09-01

    SciQL (pronounced as ‘cycle’) is a novel SQL-based array query language for scientific applications with both tables and arrays as first class citizens. SciQL lowers the entrance fee of adopting relational DBMS (RDBMS) in scientific domains, because it includes functionality often only found in mathematics software packages. In this paper, we demonstrate the usefulness of SciQL for astronomical data processing using examples from the Transient Key Project of the LOFAR radio telescope. In particular, how the LOFAR light-curve database of all detected sources can be constructed, by correlating sources across the spatial, frequency, time and polarisation domains.

  12. Explanatory Supplement to the Astronomical Almanac (3rd Edition)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urban, Sean E.; Seidelmann, P. K.

    2014-01-01

    Publications and software from the the Astronomical Applications Department of the US Naval Observatory (USNO) are used throughout the world, not only in the Department of Defense for safe navigation, but by many people including other navigators, astronomers, aerospace engineers, and geodesists. Products such as The Nautical Almanac, The Astronomical Almanac, and the Multiyear Interactive Computer Almanac (MICA) are regarded as international standards. To maintain credibility, it is imperative that the methodologies employed and the data used are well documented. "The Explanatory Supplement to the Astronomical Almanac" (hereafter, "The ES") is a major source of such documentation. It is a comprehensive reference book on positional astronomy, covering the theories and algorithms used to produce The Astronomical Almanac, an annual publication produced jointly by the Nautical Almanac Office of USNO and Her Majesty's Nautical Almanac Office (HMNAO). The first edition of The ES appeared in 1961, and the second followed in 1992. Several major changes have taken place in fundamental astronomy since the second edition was published. Advances in radio observations allowed the celestial reference frame to be tied to extragalactic radio sources, thus the International Celestial Reference System replaced the FK5 system. The success of ESA's Hipparcos satellite dramatically altered observational astrometry. Improvements in Earth orientation observations lead to new precession and nutation theories. Additionally, a new positional paradigm, no longer tied to the ecliptic and equinox, was accepted. Largely because of these changes, staff at USNO and HMNAO decided the time was right for the next edition of The ES. The third edition is now available; it is a complete revision of the 1992 book. Along with subjects covered in the previous two editions, the book also contains descriptions of the major advancements in positional astronomy over the last 20 years, some of which are

  13. Political Repression Against Soviet Astronomers in the 1930s

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eremmeva, A. I.

    1993-12-01

    The Soviet government's repression of the Russian intelligentsia in the late 1930s had a devastating effect on astronomy. This period was marked by the strengthening of a rigid ideology in society and a growing atmosphere of suspicion, fear, and spy mania. Under these conditions the international nature of astronomy--in particular the need for foreign contacts--became the excuse for accusations of "wrecking" against astronomers. The fate of individual astronomers and institutions depended greatly, however, on local circumstances. For example, the general political repression of the 1930s began in Leningrad at a time when Pulkovo Observatory director B. P. Gerasimovich was engaged in a sharp conflict with a small group of junior staff led by V. A. Ambartsumian. In addition, the very first arrest of a Leningrad astronomer--namely the arrest of B. V. Numerov--appears to have initiated a cascading series of arrests that spread like an avalanche through the close-knit com- munity of Leningrad astronomers. These two factors led to the devastating ruin of Pulkovo. Completely different circumstances saved GAISh. This was a com- paratively young institute whose junior staff had spent its formative years at GAISh rather than joining the staff from out- side (as had been the case at Pulkovo). Thus the GAISh staff had a greater degree of homogeneity and solidarity, and this, in turn, may explain why the ideological department at GAISh (the "partburo") conducted itself in a manner that differed sharply from that of the "partburo" at Pulkovo. Thanks to these circum- stances not even one arrest occurred at GAISh. The directors of Pulkovo and GAISh came from very similar back- grounds, but the different conditions at Pulkovo and GAISh led to dramatic differences in their fates: execution for B. P. Gerasimovich in 1937 and "only" the persecution of GAISh director V. G. Fesenkov. The persecution of V. G. Fesenkov included his dismissal from the post of chairman of the Astronomical

  14. "Word of Discovery": A Planetary Example from Volume I of the Astronomical Journal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, T.

    1998-09-01

    In 1850, William Lassell (1799-1880) discovered a series of bright white spots, in the south temperate latitudes of Jupiter, unlike any that that been seen before. Lassell's note on these STZ features is a useful example of how astronomical discoveries of the day were communicated among astronomers. Word of Lassell's Spots spread quickly by nineteenth-century standards. This was due, in part, to the recent appearance of journals devoted exclusively to astronomy. The transition from letters as a means of conveying scientific information to journals is reflected in the propagation of Lassell's announcement: a report of Lassell's description of the white spots to the Royal Astronomical Society appeared in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society along with a woodblock print of one of his drawings. This report reappeared shortly thereafter in German translation. It was part of a letter to the editor of the Astronomische Nachrichten, Heinrich Schumacher (1780-1850), from an English correspondent of his, the Reverend Richard Sheepshanks (1974-1855). (Sheepshanks was himself editor of the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.) It then made its way across the Atlantic as a letter from Schumacher to Benjamin Gould (1824-1896), who published it in the first volume of his upstart Astronomical Journal. There it appears in English, again, as Schumacher quoting Sheepshanks quoting Lassell! The observations by Lassell and William Dawes (1799-1868) of this phenomenon also were the first major planetary discovery made using a silvered-glass reflecting telescope. Lassell's Spots have remained in the "astronomical news" of the last 150 years: Most recently, they appeared worldwide in images showing the Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 impact sites.

  15. 16 years of airglow measurement with astronomical facilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kausch, Wolfgang; Noll, Stefan; Kimeswenger, Stefan; Unterguggenberger, Stefanie; Jones, Amy; Proxauf, Bastian

    2017-04-01

    Observations taken with ground-based astronomical telescopes are affected by various airglow emission processes in the Earth's upper atmosphere. This chemiluminescent emission can be used to investigate the physical state of the meso- and the thermosphere. By applying a modified approach of techniques originally developed to characterise and remove these features from the astronomical spectra, which are not primarily taken for airglow studies, these spectra are suitable for airglow research. For our studies, we currently use data from two observing sites on both hemispheres for our studies: The European Southern Observatory operates four 8m telescopes at the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in the Chilean Atacama desert (24.6°S, 70.4°W). The 2.5m Sloan Digital Sky Survey telescope (SDSS) located in New Mexico/USA (32.8°N, 105.8°W) provides observations from the northern hemisphere. Each of these telescopes is equipped with several astronomical instruments. Among them are several spectrographs operating in the optical and near-IR regime with medium to high spectral resolution. Currently, we work on data from the following three spectrographs (1) UVES@VLT (Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph): This instrument provides spectra in the wavelength regime from 0.3 to 1.1μm in small spectral ranges. Its high resolving power (up to R˜110 000) allows a detailed study of oxygen (OI@557nm, OI@630nm), sodium (NaD@589nm), nitrogen (NI@520nm), and many OH bands. UVES has been in operation since 1999 providing the longest time series. (2) X-Shooter@VLT: This spectrograph is unique as it provides the whole wavelength range from 0.3 to 2.5μm at once with medium resolving power (R˜3 300 to 18 000, depending on the setup). This enables us to study the dependency of optical and near-IR airglow processes simultaneously, e.g. the OH bands. In addition, weak airglow continuum emission, e.g. arising from FeO and NiO can be studied. In operation since 2009, the data cover half a

  16. The Summer Undergraduate Research Internship Program at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, M.; Whitworth, C.; Clavier, D.; Owen, L.; Barker, T.

    2012-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) offers summer undergraduate research internships. PARI has received support for the internships from the NC Space Grant Consortium, NSF awards for public science education, private donations, private foundations, and through a collaboration with the Pisgah Astronomical Research and Education Center of the University of North Carolina - Asheville. The internship program began in 2001 with 4 students. This year 7 funded students participated in 2011. Mentors for the interns include PARI's Science, Education, and Information Technology Directors and visiting faculty who are members of the PARI Research Affiliate Faculty program. Students work with mentors on radio and optical astronomy research, electrical engineering for robotic control of instruments, software development for instrument control and software for citizen science projects, and science education by developing curricula and multimedia and teaching high school students in summer programs at PARI. At the end of the summer interns write a paper about their research which is published in the PARI Summer Student Proceedings. Several of the students have presented their results at AAS Meetings. We will present a summary of specific research conducted by the students with their mentors, the logistics for hosting the PARI undergraduate internship program, and plans for growth based on the impact of an NSF supported renovation to the Research Building on the PARI campus.

  17. The Summer Undergraduate Research Internship Program at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castelaz, Michael W.; Cline, J.; Whitworth, C.; Clavier, D.

    2011-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) offers summer undergraduate research internships. PARI has received support for the internships from the NC Space Grant Consortium, NSF awards for public science education, private donations, private foundations, and through a collaboration with the Pisgah Astronomical Research and Education Center of the University of North Carolina - Asheville. The internship program began in 2001 with 4 students. This year 9 funded students participated in 2010. Mentors for the interns include PARI's Directors of Science, Education, and Information Technology and visiting faculty who are members of the PARI Research Affiliate Faculty program. Students work with mentors on radio and optical astronomy research, electrical engineering for robotic control of instruments, software development for instrument control and applets for citizen science projects, and science education by developing curricula and multimedia and teaching high school students in summer programs at PARI. At the end of the summer interns write a paper about their research which is published in the PARI Summer Student Proceedings. Several of the students have presented their results at AAS Meetings. We will present a summary of specific research conducted by the students with their mentors, the logistics for hosting the PARI undergraduate internship program, and plans for growth based on the impact of an NSF supported renovation to the Research Building on the PARI campus.

  18. Survival analysis, or what to do with upper limits in astronomical surveys

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Isobe, Takashi; Feigelson, Eric D.

    1986-01-01

    A field of applied statistics called survival analysis has been developed over several decades to deal with censored data, which occur in astronomical surveys when objects are too faint to be detected. How these methods can assist in the statistical interpretation of astronomical data are reviewed.

  19. The System for Quick Search of the Astronomical Objects and Events in the Digital Plate Archives.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sergeev, A. V.; Sergeeva, T. P.

    From the middle of the XIX century observatories all over the world have accumulated about three millions astronomical plates contained the unique information about the Universe which can not be obtained or restored with the help of any newest facilities and technologies but may be useful for many modern astronomical investigations. The threat of astronomical plate archives loss caused by economical, technical or some other causes have put before world astronomical community a problem: the preservation of the unique information kept on those plates. The problem can be solved by transformation of the information from plates to digital form and keeping it on electronic data medium. We began a creation of a system for quick search and analysing of astronomical events and objects in digital plate archive of the Ukrainian Main astronomical observatory of NAS. Connection of the system to Internet will allow a remote user (astronomer or observer) to have access to digital plate archive and to work with it. For providing of the high efficiency of this work the plate database (list of the plates with all information about them and access software) are preparing. Modular structure of the system basic software and standard format of the plate image files allow future development of problem-oriented software for special astronomical researches.

  20. Astronomers Identify a New Mid-size Black Hole

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-12-08

    Nearly all black holes come in one of two sizes: stellar mass black holes that weigh up to a few dozen times the mass of our sun or supermassive black holes ranging from a million to several billion times the sun’s mass. Astronomers believe that medium-sized black holes between these two extremes exist, but evidence has been hard to come by, with roughly a half-dozen candidates described so far. A team led by astronomers at the University of Maryland and NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center has found evidence for a new intermediate-mass black hole about 5,000 times the mass of the sun. The discovery adds one more candidate to the list of potential medium-sized black holes, while strengthening the case that these objects do exist. The team reported its findings in the September 21, 2015 online edition of Astrophysical Journal Letters. This image, taken with the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope, shows the central region of galaxy NGC1313. This galaxy is home to the ultraluminous X-ray source NCG1313X-1, which astronomers have now determined to be an intermediate-mass black hole candidate. NGC1313 is 50,000 light-years across and lies about 14 million light-years from the Milky Way in the southern constellation Reticulum. Read more: www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/astronomers-identify-a-new-m... Image credit: European Southern Observatory #nasagoddard #blackhole #space NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  1. Digitization and reduction of old astronomical plates of natural satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, D.; Qiao, R. C.; Dourneau, G.; Yu, Y.; Zhang, H. Y.; Cheng, X.; Xi, X. J.

    2016-04-01

    Old astrophotographic plates are precious sources of historical data for astronomical studies, especially regarding the improvement of natural satellite orbits. Today, with the advent of new, accurate techniques, these old data can be re-processed so as to give positions that are much more accurate than those initially obtained. Various recent projects, including our Chinese project, have involved measuring and reducing these old plates again. Here we present a method for measurement and reduction that involves the digitization of plates using an advanced commercial scanner, namely the EPSON 10000 XL. We selected a set of 27 plates of the satellites of Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus taken from 1987 to 1990. A total of 125 satellite positions were derived from the new measurement and reduction of these plates using the UCAC4 catalogue. A comparison of the new observed positions with recent ephemerides has shown a general consistency with satellite theory of about 100 mas. The new positions present an accuracy equivalent to the most recent CCD observations, and better than the original positions. Moreover, nearly 30 per cent of the 125 positions obtained in this work are published for the first time here. This paper is a preliminary contribution to the larger project of new measurements and reductions of all the old Chinese plates of natural satellites, which should allow further improvements in the knowledge of the orbits of these satellites.

  2. Russian-Cuban Colocation Station for Radio Astronomical Observation and Monitoring of Near-Earth Space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivanov, D. V.; Uratsuka, M.-R.; Ipatov, A. V.; Marshalov, D. A.; Shuygina, N. V.; Vasilyev, M. V.; Gayazov, I. S.; Ilyin, G. N.; Bondarenko, Yu. S.; Melnikov, A. E.; Suvorkin, V. V.

    2018-04-01

    The article presents the main possibilities of using the projected Russian-Cuban geodynamic colocation station on the basis of the Institute of Geophysics and Astronomy of the Ministry of Science, Technology and the Environment of the Republic of Cuba to carry out radio observations and monitoring the near-Earth space. Potential capabilities of the station are considered for providing various observational programs: astrophysical observations; observations by space geodesy methods using radio very long baselines interferometers, global navigation satellite systems, laser rangers, and various Doppler systems, as well as monitoring of artificial and natural bodies in the near-Earth and deep space, including the ranging of asteroids approaching the Earth. The results of modeling the observations on the planned station are compared with that obtained on the existing geodynamic stations. The efficiency of the projected Russian-Cuban station for solving astronomical tasks is considered.

  3. Precise Modelling of Telluric Features in Astronomical Spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seifahrt, A.; Käufl, H. U.; Zängl, G.; Bean, J.; Richter, M.; Siebenmorgen, R.

    2010-12-01

    Ground-based astronomical observations suffer from the disturbing effects of the Earth's atmosphere. Oxygen, water vapour and a number of atmospheric trace gases absorb and emit light at discrete frequencies, shaping observing bands in the near- and mid-infrared and leaving their fingerprints - telluric absorption and emission lines - in astronomical spectra. The standard approach of removing the absorption lines is to observe a telluric standard star: a time-consuming and often imperfect solution. Alternatively, the spectral features of the Earth's atmosphere can be modelled using a radiative transfer code, often delivering a satisfying solution that removes these features without additional observations. In addition the model also provides a precise wavelength solution and an instrumental profile.

  4. Night Sky Network: A partnership with NASA, the ASP and Astronomical League

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chippindale, S.; Berendsen, M.

    2003-12-01

    In 2002, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) surveyed amateur astronomers to determine their views and experiences with public outreach. The ultimate goal was to discover methods to support amateur astronomers in their outreach efforts. The survey discovered that they are looking for ready-made, themed materials, training in astronomy content and presentation skills, mentoring, and networking to enhance their astronomy events and support their ability to do educational outreach. Acting on these results and with funding from NASA, the ASP is forming a nationwide coalition of amateur astronomy clubs whose members bring the science, technology and inspiration of NASA's missions to the general public. The program consists of three primary components: outreach materials, training, and community building. Member-based astronomy clubs will receive kits of materials on various astronomy topics to supplement and enhance their events as well as a "professional development" component that includes training on how to use the materials and tips to strengthen their individual presentation skills. The Night Sky Network web site includes public pages and a user area where success stories and challenges can be exchanged, new information downloaded, and a support area for amateur astronomers doing outreach. We are currently testing our first kit, "PlanetQuest: The Search for Another Earth", in over two dozen clubs across the country. The second kit, "Big Bang to Black Holes" is under development for NASA's Structure and Evolution of the Universe Forum through the SAO and will be beta tested over the spring and summer of 2004. Sponsored and supported by NASA-Navigator Program, NASA-SAO Education Forum, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, and the Astronomical League.

  5. The re-definition of the astronomical unit of length:reasons and consequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capitaine, Nicole; Klioner, Sergei; McCarthy, Dennis

    2012-08-01

    The astronomical unit (au) is a unit of length approximating the Sun - Earth distance that is used mainly to express the scale of the solar system. Its current definition is based on the value of the Gaussian gravitational constant, k. This conveniently provided accurate relative distances (expressed in astronomical units) when absolute distances could not be estimated with high accuracy. The huge improvement achieved in solar system ephemerides during the last decade provides an opportunity to re - consider the definition and status of the au. This issue was discussed recently by Klioner (2008), Capitaine & Guinot (2009) and Capitaine et al. (2011), as well as within the IAU Working Group on "Numerical Standards for Fundamental astronomy". This resulted in a proposed IAU Resolution recommending that the astronomical unit be re - defined as a fixed number of Système International d ’ Unités (SI) metres through a defining constant. For continuity that constant should be the value of the current best estimate in metres as adopted by IAU 2009 Resolution B2 (i.e. 149 597 870 700 m). After reviewing the properties of the IAU 1976 astronomical unit and its status in the IAU 2009 System of Astronomical Constants, we explain the main reasons for a change; we present and discuss the proposed new definition as well as the advantages over the historical definition. One important consequence is that the heliocentric gravitational constant, GM(Sun), would cease to have a fixed value in astronomical units and will have to be determined experimentally. This would be compliant with modern dynamics of the solar system as it would allow

  6. The Discovery of Extrasolar Planets by Backyard Astronomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Castellano, Tim; Laughlin, Greg; DeVincenzi, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The discovery since 1995 of more than 80 planets around nearby solar-like stars and the photometric measurement of a transit of the jovian mass planet orbiting the solar-like star HD 209458 (producing a more than 1% drop in brightness that lasts 3 hours) has heralded a new era in astronomy. It has now been demonstrated that small telescopes equipped with sensitive and stable electronic detectors can produce fundamental scientific discoveries regarding the frequency and nature of planets outside the solar system. The modest equipment requirements for the discovery of extrasolar planetary transits of jovian mass planets in short period orbits around solar-like stars are fulfilled by commercial small aperture telescopes and CCD (charge coupled device) imagers common among amateur astronomers. With equipment already in hand and armed with target lists, observing techniques and software procedures developed by scientists at NASA's Ames Research Center and the University of California at Santa Cruz, non-professional astronomers can contribute significantly to the discovery and study of planets around others stars. In this way, we may resume (after a two century interruption!) the tradition of planet discoveries by amateur astronomers begun with William Herschel's 1787 discovery of the 'solar' planet Uranus.

  7. Bringing the Virtual Astronomical Observatory to the Education Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawton, B.; Eisenhamer, B.; Mattson, B. J.; Raddick, M. J.

    2012-08-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is an international effort to bring a large-scale electronic integration of astronomy data, tools, and services to the global community. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is the U.S. NSF- and NASA-funded VO effort that seeks to put efficient astronomical tools in the hands of U.S. astronomers, students, educators, and public outreach leaders. These tools will make use of data collected by the multitude of ground- and space-based missions over the previous decades. The Education and Public Outreach (EPO) program for the VAO will be led by the Space Telescope Science Institute in collaboration with the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC) EPO program and Johns Hopkins University. VAO EPO efforts seek to bring technology, real-world astronomical data, and the story of the development and infrastructure of the VAO to the general public and education community. Our EPO efforts will be structured to provide uniform access to VAO information, enabling educational and research opportunities across multiple wavelengths and time-series data sets. The VAO team recognizes that the VO has already built many tools for EPO purposes, such as Microsoft's World Wide Telescope, SDSS Sky Server, Aladin, and a multitude of citizen-science tools available from Zooniverse. However, it is not enough to simply provide tools. Tools must meet the needs of the education community and address national education standards in order to be broadly utilized. To determine which tools the VAO will incorporate into the EPO program, needs assessments will be conducted with educators across the U.S.

  8. From Pushing Paper to Pushing Dirt - Canada's Largest LLRW Cleanup Gets Underway - 13111

    SciTech Connect

    Veen, Walter van; Lawrence, Dave

    2013-07-01

    The Port Hope Project is the larger of the two projects in the Port Hope Area Initiative (PHAI), Canada's largest low level radioactive waste (LLRW) cleanup. With a budget of approximately $1 billion, the Port Hope Project includes a broad and complex range of remedial elements from a state of the art water treatment plant, an engineered waste management facility, municipal solid waste removal, remediation of 18 major sites within the Municipality of Port Hope (MPH), sediment dredging and dewatering, an investigation of 4,800 properties (many of these homes) to identify LLRW and remediation of approximately 450 of these properties.more » This paper discusses the status of the Port Hope Project in terms of designs completed and regulatory approvals received, and sets out the scope and schedule for the remaining studies, engineering designs and remediation contracts. (authors)« less

  9. Record-Breaking Radio Astronomy Project to Measure Sky with Extreme Precision

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-11-01

    Astronomers will tie together the largest collection of the world's radio telescopes ever assembled to work as a single observing tool in a project aimed at improving the precision of the reference frame scientists use to measure positions in the sky. The National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) will be a key part of the project, which is coordinated by the International VLBI Service for Geodesy and Astrometry. For 24 hours, starting Wednesday, November 18, and ending Thursday, November 19, 35 radio telescopes located on seven continents will observe 243 distant quasars. The quasars, galaxies with supermassive black holes at their cores, are profuse emitters of radio waves, and also are so distant that, despite their actual motions in space, they appear stationary as seen from Earth. This lack of apparent motion makes them ideal celestial landmarks for anchoring a grid system, similar to earthly latitude and longitude, used to mark the positions of celestial objects. Data from all the radio telescopes will be combined to make them work together as a system capable of measuring celestial positions with extremely high precision. The technique used, called very long baseline interferometry (VLBI), has been used for decades for both astronomical and geodetic research. However, no previous position-measuring observation has used as many radio telescopes or observed as many objects in a single session. The previous record was a 23-telescope observation. At a meeting in Brazil last August, the International Astronomical Union adopted a new reference frame for celestial positions that will be used starting on January 1. This new reference frame uses a set of 295 quasars to define positions, much like surveyor's benchmarks in a surburban subdivision. Because even with 35 radio telescopes around the world, there are some gaps in sky coverage, the upcoming observation will observe 243 of the 295. By observing so many quasars in a single observing session

  10. Climate and carbon-cycle response to astronomical forcing over the last 35 Ma.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Vleeschouwer, D.; Palike, H.; Vahlenkamp, M.; Crucifix, M.

    2017-12-01

    On a million-year time scale, the characteristics of insolation forcing caused by cyclical variations in the astronomical parameters of the Earth remain stable. Nevertheless, Earth's climate responded very differently to this forcing during different parts of the Cenozoic. The recently-published ∂18Obenthic megasplice (De Vleeschouwer et al., 2017) allowed for a clear visualization of these changes in global climate response to astronomical forcing. However, many open questions remain regarding how carbon-cycle dynamics influence Earth's climate sensitivity to astronomical climate forcing. To provide insight into the interaction between the carbon cycle and astronomical insolation forcing, we built a benthic carbon isotope (∂13Cbenthic) megasplice for the last 35 Ma, employing the same technique used to build the ∂18Obenthic megasplice. The ∂13Cbenthic megasplice exhibits a strong imprint of the 405 and 100-kyr eccentricity cycles throughout the last 35 Ma. This is intriguing, as the oxygen isotope megasplice looses its eccentricity imprint after the mid-Miocene climatic transition (MMCT; see Fig. 1 in De Vleeschouwer et al., 2017). In other words, the carbon cycle responded completely differently to astronomical forcing, compared to global climate during the late Miocene. We visualize this difference in response by the application of a Gaussian process, which renders the dependence of one variable (here ∂18Obenthic or ∂13Cbenthic) in a multidimensional space (here precession, obliquity and eccentricity). Together, the ∂13Cbenthic and ∂18Obenthic megasplices thus provide a unique tool for paleoclimatology, allowing for the quantification and visualization of the changing paleoclimate and carbon-cycle response to astronomical forcing throughout geologic time. References De Vleeschouwer, D., Vahlenkamp, M., Crucifix, M., Pälike, H., 2017. Alternating Southern and Northern Hemisphere climate response to astronomical forcing during the past 35 m

  11. Powerful Radio Burst Indicates New Astronomical Phenomenon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-09-01

    Astronomers studying archival data from an Australian radio telescope have discovered a powerful, short-lived burst of radio waves that they say indicates an entirely new type of astronomical phenomenon. Region of Strong Radio Burst Visible-light (negative greyscale) and radio (contours) image of Small Magellanic Cloud and area where burst originated. CREDIT: Lorimer et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF Click on image for high-resolution file ( 114 KB) "This burst appears to have originated from the distant Universe and may have been produced by an exotic event such as the collision of two neutron stars or the death throes of an evaporating black hole," said Duncan Lorimer, Assistant Professor of Physics at West Virginia University (WVU) and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). The research team led by Lorimer consists of Matthew Bailes of Swinburne University in Australia, Maura McLaughlin of WVU and NRAO, David Narkevic of WVU, and Fronefield Crawford of Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The astronomers announced their findings in the September 27 issue of the online journal Science Express. The startling discovery came as WVU undergraduate student David Narkevic re-analyzed data from observations of the Small Magellanic Cloud made by the 210-foot Parkes radio telescope in Australia. The data came from a survey of the Magellanic Clouds that included 480 hours of observations. "This survey had sought to discover new pulsars, and the data already had been searched for the type of pulsating signals they produce," Lorimer said. "We re-examined the data, looking for bursts that, unlike the usual ones from pulsars, are not periodic," he added. The survey had covered the Magellanic Clouds, a pair of small galaxies in orbit around our own Milky Way Galaxy. Some 200,000 light-years from Earth, the Magellanic Clouds are prominent features in the Southern sky. Ironically, the new discovery is not part of these galaxies, but rather is much more distant

  12. Pulkovo Observatory - One of the Main Centers of Astronomical Education in Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shakht, Natalia A.

    2007-08-01

    Since the beginning of the activity in 1839, Pulkovo observatory was an important center of the teaching of astronomy and geodesy in Russia. The first director of Pulkovo observatory W. Ja. Struve together with Pulkovo astronomers taught the topographers and specialists in geodesy and to naval officers the methods of geographic coordinates determinations. Pulkovo observatory was the center of the improvement of such specialists till 1928. Pulkovo astronomers lecture for students in the leading educational centers during many decades and at present and also lead the aspirants and researchers. The works of Pulkovo astronomers have been united in the known textbooks of astronomy and stellar astronomy with several re-editions. In 1957-1965 after the first launch of artificial satellite, many seminars and schools, which were dedicated to study of observations of artificial satellites and to the space geodesy have been organized at Pulkovo. Each year, about 10-15 thousands of guests visit Pulkovo. Our astronomers have the contact with the amateurs of astronomy in many countries and collect the information on their observations. More than 1,000,000 observations of asteroids and comets made by amateurs are collected with the scientific aims, particularly for the enlargement of the information about NEOs. Pulkovo astronomers lecture and give the practical lessons in ecological expeditions, which unite young people of various places of Russia.

  13. The Hunt for Pristine Cretaceous Astronomical Rhythms at Demerara Rise (Cenomanian-Coniacian)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, C.; Meyers, S. R.

    2014-12-01

    Rhythmic Upper Cretaceous strata from Demerara Rise (ODP leg 207) preserve a strong astronomical signature, and this attribute has facilitated the development of continuous astrochronologies to refine the geologic time scale and calibrate Late Cretaceous biogeochemical events. While the mere identification of astronomical rhythms is a crucial first step in many deep-time paleoceanographic investigations, accurate evaluation of often subtle amplitude and frequency modulations are required to: (1) robustly constrain the linkage between climate and sedimentation, and (2) evaluate the plausibility of different theoretical astrodynamical models. The availability of a wide range of geophysical, lithologic and geochemical data from multiple sites drilled at Demerara Rise - when coupled with recent innovations in the statistical analysis of cyclostratigraphic data - provides an opportunity to hunt for the most pristine record of Cretaceous astronomical rhythms at a tropical Atlantic location. To do so, a statistical metric is developed to evaluate the "internal" consistency of hypothesized astronomical rhythms observed in each data set, particularly with regard to the expected astronomical amplitude modulations. In this presentation, we focus on how the new analysis yields refinements to the existing astrochronologies, provides constraints on the linkages between climate and sedimentation (including the deposition of organic carbon-rich sediments at Demerara Rise), and allows a quantitative evaluation of the continuity of deposition across sites at multiple temporal scales.

  14. Critical factors for a successful astronomical research program in a developing country

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hearnshaw, John B.

    I discuss the critical conditions for undertaking a successful research program in a developing country. There are many important factors, all or most of which have to be satisfied: funding, library holdings, computing access, Internet access (e-mail, WWW, ftp, telnet), collaboration with astronomers in developed countries, provision of proper offices for staff, supply of graduate students, access to travel for conferences, ability to publish in international journals, critical mass of researchers, access to a telescope (for observational astronomers), support from and interaction with national electronics, optics and precision engineering industries, a scientific culture backed by a national scientific academy, and lack of inter-institutional rivalry. I make a list of a total of 15 key factors and rank them in order of importance, and discuss the use of an astronomical research index (ARI) suitable for measuring the research potential of a given country or institution. I also discuss whether astronomers in developing countries in principle fare better in a university or in the environment of a government national observatory or research institution, and topics such as the effect of the cost of page charges and journal subscriptions on developing countries. Finally I present some statistics on astronomy in developing countries and relate the numbers of astronomers to the size of the economy and population in each country.

  15. Supporting Evidence for the Astronomically Calibrated Age of Fish Canyon Sanidine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivera, T. A.; Storey, M.; Zeeden, C.; Kuiper, K.; Hilgen, F.

    2010-12-01

    The relative nature of the 40Ar/39Ar radio-isotopic dating technique requires that the age and error of the monitor mineral be accurately known. The most widely accepted monitor for Cenozoic geochronology is the Fish Canyon sanidine (FCs), whose recommended published ages have varied by up to 2% over the past two decades. To reconcile the discrepancy among recommended ages, researchers have turned to the use of (i) intercalibration experiments with primary argon standards, (ii) cross-calibration with U-Pb ages, and (iii) cross-calibration with sanidine-hosted tephras present in astronomically tuned stratigraphic sections. The increasingly robust quality of the astronomical timescale, with precision better than 0.1% for the last 10 million years, suggests this method of intercalibration as the best way to proceed with addressing the true age of FCs. Recently, Kuiper, et al. (2008) determined an astronomically calibrated age of 28.201 ± 0.046 Ma (2σ), based upon the Moroccan Melilla Basin Messâdit section. Here, we provide independent verification for the Kuiper, et al. (2008) FCs age using sanidines extracted from a tephra intercalated in another Mediterranean-based astronomically tuned section. The direct tuning of this section was achieved through correlation to long (~400 kyr) and short (~100 kyr) eccentricity, followed by tuning of basic sedimentary cycles to precession and summer insolation, using the La2004(1,1) astronomical solution (Laskar, et al., 2004). We employed a Nu Instruments Noblesse multi-collector noble gas mass spectrometer for the 40Ar/39Ar experiments, analyzing single crystals of FCs relative to sanidines from the astronomically dated tephra. The use of the multi-collector instrument allowed us to obtain high precision analyses with a level of precision for fully propagated external errors for FCs near the 0.1% goal of EARTHTIME. The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community's Seventh Framework

  16. Terahertz Mixing Characteristics of NbN Superconducting Tunnel Junctions and Related Astronomical Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, J.

    2010-01-01

    (5hω/kB), which is the best among NbN superconducting SIS mixers developed in this frequency band; (4) demonstration of high sensitivity for NbN superconducting SIS mixers operated at temperatures as high as 10 K, and demonstration of much less interference resulting from the Josephson effect; (5) demonstration of the first astronomical observation ever done with an NbN superconducting SIS mixer. This study has provided further understanding of the quantum mixing behaviors of NbN superconducting SIS mixers. It has been demonstrated that NbN superconducting SIS mixers can reach nearly quantum-limited sensitivity and have good stability. Furthermore, NbN superconducting SIS mixers have less stringent requirement for cooling and magnetic field compared with Nb ones. Hence they can be used in astronomical applications, especially for space-borne projects and complex systems such as multi-beam receivers.

  17. Astronomical fire: Richard Carrington and the solar flare of 1859.

    PubMed

    Clark, Stuart

    2007-09-01

    An explosion on the Sun in 1859, serendipitously witnessed by amateur astronomer Richard Carrington, plunged telegraphic communications into chaos and bathed two thirds of the Earth's skies in aurorae. Explaining what happened to the Sun and how it could affect Earth, 93 million miles away, helped change the direction of astronomy. From being concerned principally with charting the stars to aid navigation, astronomers became increasingly concerned with what the celestial objects were, how they behaved and how they might affect life on Earth.

  18. JEUMICO: Czech-Bavarian astronomical X-ray optics project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudec, R.; Döhring, T.

    2017-07-01

    Within the project JEUMICO, an acronym for "Joint European Mirror Competence", the Aschaffenburg University of Applied Sciences and the Czech Technical University in Prague started a collaboration to develop mirrors for X-ray telescopes. Corresponding mirror segments use substrates of flat silicon wafers which are coated with thin iridium films, as this material is promising high reflectivity in the X-ray range of interest. The sputtering parameters are optimized in the context of the expected reflectivity of the coated X-ray mirrors. In near future measurements of the assembled mirror modules optical performances are planned at an X-ray test facility.

  19. All-sky brightness monitoring of light pollution with astronomical methods.

    PubMed

    Rabaza, O; Galadí-Enríquez, D; Estrella, A Espín; Dols, F Aznar

    2010-06-01

    This paper describes a mobile prototype and a protocol to measure light pollution based on astronomical methods. The prototype takes three all-sky images using BVR filters of the Johnson-Cousins astronomical photometric system. The stars are then identified in the images of the Hipparcos and General Catalogue of Photometric Data II astronomical catalogues, and are used as calibration sources. This method permits the measurement of night-sky brightness and facilitates an estimate of which fraction is due to the light up-scattered in the atmosphere by a wide variety of man-made sources. This is achieved by our software, which compares the sky background flux to that of many stars of known brightness. The reduced weight and dimensions of the prototype allow the user to make measurements from virtually any location. This prototype is capable of measuring the sky distribution of light pollution, and also provides an accurate estimate of the background flux at each photometric band. (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Digitization and Position Measurement of Astronomical Plates of Saturnian Satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, D.; Yu, Y.; Zhang, H. Y.; Qiao, R. C.

    2014-05-01

    Using the advanced commercial scanners to digitize astronomical plates may be a simple and effective way. In this paper, we discuss the method of digitizing and astrometrically reducing six astronomical plates of Saturnian satellites, which were taken from the 1 m RCC (Ritchey Chretien Coude) telescope of Yunnan Observatory in 1988, by using the 10000XL scanner of Epson. The digitized images of the astronomical plates of Saturnian satellites are re-reduced, and the positions of Saturnian satellites based on the UCAC2 (The Second US Naval Observatory CCD Astrograph Catalog) catalogue are given. A comparison of our measured positions with the IMCCE (Institut de Mecanique Celeste et de Calcul des Ephemerides) ephemeris of Saturnian satellites shows the high quality of our measurements, which have an accuracy of 106 mas in right ascension and 89 mas in declination. Moreover, our measurements appear to be consistent with this ephemeris within only about 56 mas in right ascension and 9 mas in declination.

  1. Astronomers in the Chemist's War

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trimble, Virginia L.

    2012-01-01

    World War II, with radar, rockets, and "atomic" bombs was the physicists' war. And many of us know, or think we know, what our more senior colleagues did during it, with Hubble and Hoffleit at Aberdeen; M. Schwarzschild on active duty in Italy; Bondi, Gold, and Hoyle hunkered down in Dunsfeld, Surrey, talking about radar, and perhaps steady state; Greenstein and Henyey designing all-sky cameras; and many astronomers teaching navigation. World War I was The Chemists' War, featuring poison gases, the need to produce liquid fuels from coal on one side of the English Channel and to replace previously-imported dyesstuffs on the other. The talke will focus on what astronomers did and had done to them between 1914 and 1919, from Freundlich (taken prisoner on an eclipse expedition days after the outbreak of hostilities) to Edwin Hubble, returning from France without ever having quite reached the front lines. Other events bore richer fruit (Hale and the National Research Council), but very few of the stories are happy ones. Most of us have neither first nor second hand memories of The Chemists' War, but I had the pleasure of dining with a former Freundlich student a couple of weeks ago.

  2. The challenges and frustrations of a veteran astronomical optician: Robert Lundin, 1880-1962

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briggs, John W.; Osterbrock, Donald E.

    1998-12-01

    Robert Lundin, apprenticed in nineteenth century optical craftsmanship but employed in twenty century fabrication and engineering, suffered many frustrations during a nonetheless productive career. Son of Carl A.R. Lundin, a senior optician at the famous American firm of Alvan Clark & Sons, Robert grew up building telescopes. As a teenager, he assisted with projects including the 1-m [40-inch] objective for Yerkes Observatory. After his father's death in 1915, he became manager of the Clark Corporation and was responsible for many smaller, successful refractors and reflectors. Lundin also completed major projects, including a highly praised 50.8-cm achromat for Van Vleck Observatory, as well as a successful 33-cm astrograph used at Lowell to discover Pluto. In 1929, a dispute with the owners of the Clark Corporation led to Lundin's resignation and his creation of a new business, "C.A. Robert Lundin and Associates." This short-lived firm built several observatory refractors, including a 26.7 cm for E.W. Rice, the retired chairman of General Electric. But none was entirely successful, and the Great Depression finished off the company. In 1933, Lundin took a job as head of Warner & Swasey's new optical shop, only to experience his greatest disasters. The 2.08-m [82-inch] reflector for McDonald Observatory was delayed for years until astronomers uncovered an error in Lundin's procedure for testing the primary mirror. A 38.1-cm photographic lens for the Naval Observatory was a complete failure. Under pressure to complete a 61-cm Schmidt camera, Lundin seems to have attempted to deceive visiting astronomers. After retirement in the mid 1940s, Lundin moved to Austin, Texas, the home of his daughter, where he died. His difficulties should not obscure his success with many instruments that continue to serve as important research and education tools.

  3. Astronomical Instrumentation Systems Quality Management Planning: AISQMP (Abstract)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldbaum, J.

    2017-12-01

    (Abstract only) The capability of small aperture astronomical instrumentation systems (AIS) to make meaningful scientific contributions has never been better. The purpose of AIS quality management planning (AISQMP) is to ensure the quality of these contributions such that they are both valid and reliable. The first step involved with AISQMP is to specify objective quality measures not just for the AIS final product, but also for the instrumentation used in its production. The next step is to set up a process to track these measures and control for any unwanted variation. The final step is continual effort applied to reducing variation and obtaining measured values near optimal theoretical performance. This paper provides an overview of AISQMP while focusing on objective quality measures applied to astronomical imaging systems.

  4. Project LITE Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weeks, E.; Brecher, K.; Carr, P.; Garik, P.

    2003-12-01

    Spectroscopy is one of the most important tools used by astronomers to disentangle information about the universe. However, it is one of the most challenging subjects in undergraduate astronomy courses. Among the most difficult concepts for students to master are Kirchhoff's laws, blackbody radiation, the Stefan-Boltzmann law, Wien's law, the nature and causes of emission and absorption lines, and the relation of spectra to the underlying astronomical and physical processes producing them. Students often seem baffled by the connection between a spectrum seen visually as a color band and the same spectrum plotted graphically as intensity versus wavelength or frequency. Project LITE (Light Inquiry Through Experiments) is a software, curriculum, and materials development project at Boston University. As part of the project, we are currently developing a suite of spectroscopic tools for astronomy education. We are also assessing their effectiveness in improving conceptual understanding of spectroscopic phenomena by astronomy students at the undergraduate level. The spectroscopy component of Project LITE includes take-home laboratory materials and experiments, which are integrated with web-based software. We have also developed a novel quantitative handheld binocular spectrometer (patent pending). Here we present an overview of the Project LITE homelab kits and curriculum, the Spectrum Explorer, and the Project LITE spectrometer. The homelab experiments and the Spectrum Explorer have been tested with students in a non-science majors introductory astronomy course as well as in a School of Education course for prospective elementary school science teachers. We present preliminary results of pre- and post-instruction surveys of student understanding of various spectral properties of light both from students who used the homelab activities and the Spectrum Explorer and those who did not. The Spectrum Explorer (along with many other applets about both the physical and

  5. Plans for future on-line access to the historical astronomical literature through the Astrophysics Data System.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eichhorn, G.; Kurtz, M. J.; Coletti, D.

    1997-09-01

    The NASA Astrophysics Data System provides access to about 1 million abstracts and 50,000 journal articles. This service is funded by NASA and is accessible world-wide through the World Wide Web free without restrictions at: http://adswww.harvard.edu We currently have on-line journals starting with 1975. We plan to extend the coverage for the journals and also include scans from observatory publications in our database. Eventually we plan to provide access to scans of the complete journal literature and as much observatory literature as possible. In order to accomplish this, we have started discussions with the preservation group at the Harvard University Library. Harvard University Library, together with the Library at the Center for Astrophysics is in the process of microfilming their collection of observatory publications. We are working together with this project to prepare for scanning the microfilms and make these scans available through the ADS. We are also collecting older journals and preparing them for scanning. We already have the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society in hand from Volume 1, and have been promised a large part of the Astronomische Nachrichten prior to 1945. We will start scanning these volumes soon. All volumes that can be fed automatically through the scanning machine should be scanned and put on-line within the next 6 - 12 months. In order to scan volumes that are too brittle, we need additional funding. We hope to obtain additional funding to cover such scanning for 1998. In order to cover more of the astronomical literature, we need donations of astronomical literature. We have a web page that lists the volumes that we need so we can scan them. If you have any of these journals (or other astronomical literature), please contact us. the web page is at: http://adshome.harvard.edu/pubs/missing_journals.html We would appreciate any contributions, even smaller sets, since it will be more and more difficult to find complete sets.

  6. Ancient Astronomical Hieroglyphs of the Armenian Highland and their Echo in Architectural Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ter-Gulanyan, Ani

    2014-10-01

    The credo-spiritual structure formed as a result of astronomical knowledge in the Armenian Highland and recognition of the universe, with its symbolistic signs - which, in our opinion, were expressed in particular by astronomic horoscope hieroglyphs - have had their worship and spiritual speculative feedback both in architecture and in different other arts, especially in symbolic jewelry. A visible link is noticed between the shift of constellations and the civilization development phases. Identification of archeological sources gives the ground to conclude that Armenia has been one of the centers of astronomy. The astronomical signs, having a local origin and having formed ancient astronomical-worship, spiritual-credo structure, have found the feedback of its developments also in other biospheres with respective unique manifestations, in both ancient pagan church architecture and the Christian church architecture, both as a volume form and as a spiritual ideology, with its credosymbolistic signs.

  7. Astronomers' Race to Test Relativity, 1911-1930

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crelinsten, Jeffrey

    2006-11-01

    Einstein's theory of relativity changed our notions of space and time and has dramatically altered the way we look at the universe and our place in it. Yet to this day a working knowledge of the theory is beyond most people. In today's popular culture, Einstein is a remote, loveable genius and his theory is incomprehensible. While Einstein's theory ultimately laid the foundation for modern studies of the universe, it took a long time to be accepted. Between 1905 and 1930, relativity was poorly understood and Einstein worked hard to try to make it more accessible to scientists and scientifically literate laypeople. Its acceptance was largely due to the astronomy community, which undertook precise measurements to test Einstein's astronomical predictions. How astronomers approached the ``Einstein problem'' in these early years and how the public reacted to what they reported helped to shape attitudes we hold today about Einstein and his ideas.

  8. Astronomical chemistry.

    PubMed

    Klemperer, William

    2011-01-01

    The discovery of polar polyatomic molecules in higher-density regions of the interstellar medium by means of their rotational emission detected by radioastronomy has changed our conception of the universe from essentially atomic to highly molecular. We discuss models for molecule formation, emphasizing the general lack of thermodynamic equilibrium. Detailed chemical kinetics is needed to understand molecule formation as well as destruction. Ion molecule reactions appear to be an important class for the generally low temperatures of the interstellar medium. The need for the intrinsically high-quality factor of rotational transitions to definitively pin down molecular emitters has been well established by radioastronomy. The observation of abundant molecular ions both positive and, as recently observed, negative provides benchmarks for chemical kinetic schemes. Of considerable importance in guiding our understanding of astronomical chemistry is the fact that the larger molecules (with more than five atoms) are all organic.

  9. IYL Blog: Astronomers travel in time and space with light

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mather, John C.

    2015-01-01

    also using light to find out whether we are alone in the universe. The Kepler observatory showed that thousands of stars blink a little when their orbiting planets pass between us and them, and other observatories use light to measure the wobble of stars as their planets pull on them. Eventually, we will find out whether planets like Earth have atmospheres like Earth's too - with water, carbon dioxide, oxygen, methane, and other gases that would be evidence of photosynthetic life. I think in a few decades we will have evidence that some planets do have life, and it will be done using light for remote chemical analysis. Also, astronomers at the SETI project are using light (long wavelength light we can pick up with radio telescopes) to look for signals from intelligent civilizations. That's a harder project because we don't know what to look for. But if we wanted to send signals all the way across the Milky Way, we could do it with laser beams, and if somebody over there knew what to look for, he or she could decode the message. On with the search! Dr. John C. Mather is a Senior Astrophysicist and is the Senior Project Scientist for the James Webb Space Telescope at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD. His research centers on infrared astronomy and cosmology. With the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) team, he showed that the cosmic microwave background radiation has a blackbody spectrum within 50 parts per million, confirming the expanding universe model (aka the Big Bang Theory) to extraordinary accuracy, and initiating the study of cosmology as a precision science. The COBE team also made the first map of the hot and cold spots in the background radiation. The COBE maps have been confirmed and improved by two succeeding space missions, the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP, built by GSFC with Princeton University), and the Planck mission built by ESA. Based on these maps, astronomers have now developed a "standard model" of cosmology and have

  10. Astronomical, physical, and meteorological parameters for planetary atmospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allison, Michael; Travis, Larry D.

    1986-01-01

    A newly compiled table of astronomical, physical, and meteorological parameters for planetary atmospheres is presented. Formulae and explanatory notes for their application and a complete listing of sources are also given.

  11. The caracol tower at chichen itza: an ancient astronomical observatory?

    PubMed

    Aveni, A F; Gibbs, S L; Hartung, H

    1975-06-06

    Although our investigations reveal a number of significant astronomical events coinciding with many of the measured alignments presented in Table 1, not every alignment appears to have an astronomical match which we can recognize. It may be that only some of the sighting possibilities we have discussed were actually functional. Moreover, our search of significant astronomical events to match the alignments has included only those which seem of obvious functional importance to us: sun, moon, and planetary extremes and the setting positions of the brightest stars. We have emphasized those celestial bodies which are documented in the literature as having been of importance. Perhaps hitherto unrecognized constellations were sighted in the windows, perhaps fainter stars, the heliacal rising and setting times of which could have served to mark important dates in the calendar. While we propose no grand cosmic scheme for the astronomical design of the Caracol it can be inferred that the building, apart from being a monument related to Quetzalcoatl, was erected primarily for the purpose of embodying in its architecture certain significant astronomical event alignments, in the same sense that a modern astronomical ephemeris exhibits information of importance to us in the keeping of the current calendar. There are examples in the Mesoamerican historical literature of deliberate attempts to align buildings with astronomical directions of importance. For example, Maudslay (33) quotes Father Motolinia, who tells us that in Tenochtitlan the festival called Tlacaxipeualistli "took place when the sun stood in the middle of Huicholobos, which was at the equinox, and because it was a little out of the straight, Montezuma wished to pull it down and set it right." According to Maudslay, worshipers were probably facing east to watch the sun rise between the two oratories on the Great Temple of Tenochtitlan at the time of the equinox. The directions of the faces of the Lower and Upper

  12. Astronomical Research Institute Photometric Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linder, Tyler R.; Sampson, Ryan; Holmes, Robert

    2013-01-01

    The Astronomical Research Institute (ARI) conducts astrometric and photometric studies of asteroids with a concentration on near-Earth objects (NEOs). A 0.76-m autoscope was used for photometric studies of seven asteroids of which two were main-belt targets and five were NEOs, including one potentially hazardous asteroid (PHA). These objects are: 3122 Florence, 3960 Chaliubieju, 5143 Heracles, (6455) 1992 HE, (36284) 2000 DM8, (62128) 2000 SO1, and 2010 LF86.

  13. Abilities of Celestial Observations in Astronomical Observatory of Physics Institute in Opole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godłowski, W.; Szpanko, M.

    2010-12-01

    We present possibilities of astronomical investigation in Astronomical Observatory in Opole. Our observatory uses two telescopes: Celestron CGE-1400 XLT (35 cm) and Meade LX200 (30 cm) with spectrograph and CCD Camera. Main topic of our observational investigation is connected with observations of variable stars, minor bodies of the solar system, blazers and the Sun.

  14. The Production Rate and Employment of Ph.D. Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metcalfe, Travis S.

    2008-02-01

    In an effort to encourage self-regulation of the astronomy job market, I examine the supply of, and demand for, astronomers over time. On the supply side, I document the production rate of Ph.D. astronomers from 1970 to 2006 using the UMI Dissertation Abstracts database, along with data from other independent sources. I compare the long-term trends in Ph.D. production with federal astronomy research funding over the same time period, and I demonstrate that additional funding is correlated with higher subsequent Ph.D. production. On the demand side, I monitor the changing patterns of employment using statistics about the number and types of jobs advertised in the AAS Job Register from 1984 to 2006. Finally, I assess the sustainability of the job market by normalizing this demand by the annual Ph.D. production. The most recent data suggest that there are now annual advertisements for about one postdoctoral job, half a faculty job, and half a research/support position for every new domestic Ph.D. recipient in astronomy and astrophysics. The average new astronomer might expect to hold up to 3 jobs before finding a steady position.

  15. Improving Science Literacy Though Engagement in Astronomy at the Astronomical Society of the Pacific

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manning, James; Gibbs, M.; Gurton, S.

    2009-01-01

    The Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) increases the understanding and appreciation of astronomy by engaging scientists, educators, enthusiasts and the public to advance science and science literacy. The mission-based astronomy and space science education and public outreach programs provide hands-on resources for both formal and informal educators working with K-12 students and the general public. This poster both highlights the ASP's signature programs, such as Project ASTRO, the Night Sky Network, and Astronomy from the Ground Up, and provides updated information regarding the recent impact the programs are having throughout the United States. Information regarding the ASP can be located online at www.astrosociety.org.

  16. Astronomers Discover Six-Image Gravitational Lens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2001-08-01

    An international team of astronomers has used the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope and NASA's Hubble Space Telescope (HST) to discover the first gravitational lens in which the single image of a very distant galaxy has been split into six different images. The unique configuration is produced by the gravitational effect of three galaxies along the line of sight between the more-distant galaxy and Earth. Optical and Radio Images of Gravitational Lens "This is the first gravitational lens with more than four images of the background object that is produced by a small group of galaxies rather than a large cluster of galaxies," said David Rusin, who just received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. "Such systems are expected to be extremely rare, so this discovery is an important stepping stone. Because this is an intermediate case between gravitational lenses produced by single galaxies and lenses produced by large clusters of galaxies, it will give us insights we can't get from other types of lenses," Rusin added. The gravitational lens, called CLASS B1359+154, consists of a galaxy more than 11 billion light-years away in the constellation Bootes, with a trio of galaxies more than 7 billion light-years away along the same line of sight. The more-distant galaxy shows signs that it contains a massive black hole at its core and also has regions in which new stars are forming. The gravitational effect of the intervening galaxies has caused the light and radio waves from the single, more-distant galaxy to be "bent" to form six images as seen from Earth. Four of these images appear outside the triangle formed by the three intermediate galaxies and two appear inside that triangle. "This lens system is a very interesting case to study because it is more complicated than lenses produced by single galaxies, and yet simpler than lenses produced by clusters of numerous galaxies," said Chris Kochanek of the Harvard

  17. Ticking Stellar Time Bomb Identified - Astronomers find prime suspect for a Type Ia supernova

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-11-01

    Facility and the SIRIUS camera at the Sutherland station of the South African Astronomical Observatory. More information This research was presented in a paper to appear in the 20 November 2009 issue of the Astrophysical Journal, vol. 706, p. 738 ("The expanding bipolar shell of the helium nova V445 Puppis", by P. A. Woudt et al.). The team is composed of P. A. Woudt and B. Warner (University of Cape Town, South Africa), D. Steeghs and T. R. Marsh (University of Warwick, UK), M. Karovska and G. H. A. Roelofs (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge MA, USA), P. J. Groot and G. Nelemans (Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands), T. Nagayama (Kyoto University, Japan), D. P. Smits (University of South Africa, South Africa), and T. O'Brien (University of Manchester, UK). ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 14 countries: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  18. The Astronomical Almanac Online - Glossary

    Science.gov Websites

    Astronomical Almanac. Δ A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z $\\boldmath{\\Delta {\\rm T}}$: the difference between Terrestrial Time (TT) and Universal Time (UT): $\\Delta {\\rm T} = {\\rm TT} - {\\rm UT}1 $. $\\boldmath{\\Delta {\\rm UT1}}$ (or $\\boldmath{\\Delta {\\rm UT}}$): the value of the difference between

  19. Search for Low-Mass Exoplanets by Gravitational Microlensing at High Magnification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abe, F.; Bennett, D. P.; Bond, I. A.; Eguchi, S.; Furuta, Y.; Hearnshaw, J. B.; Kamiya, K.; Kilmartin, P. M.; Kurata, Y.; Masuda, K.; Matsubara, Y.; Muraki, Y.; Noda, S.; Okajima, K.; Rakich, A.; Rattenbury, N. J.; Sako, T.; Sekiguchi, T.; Sullivan, D. J.; Sumi, T.; Tristram, P. J.; Yanagisawa, T.; Yock, P. C. M.; Gal-Yam, A.; Lipkin, Y.; Maoz, D.; Ofek, E. O.; Udalski, A.; Szewczyk, O.; Żebruń, K.; Soszyński, I.; Szymański, M. K.; Kubiak, M.; Pietrzyński, G.; Wyrzykowski, L.

    2004-08-01

    Observations of the gravitational microlensing event MOA 2003-BLG-32/OGLE 2003-BLG-219 are presented, for which the peak magnification was over 500, the highest yet reported. Continuous observations around the peak enabled a sensitive search for planets orbiting the lens star. No planets were detected. Planets 1.3 times heavier than Earth were excluded from more than 50% of the projected annular region from approximately 2.3 to 3.6 astronomical units surrounding the lens star, Uranus-mass planets were excluded from 0.9 to 8.7 astronomical units, and planets 1.3 times heavier than Saturn were excluded from 0.2 to 60 astronomical units. These are the largest regions of sensitivity yet achieved in searches for extrasolar planets orbiting any star.

  20. Search for low-mass exoplanets by gravitational microlensing at high magnification.

    PubMed

    Abe, F; Bennett, D P; Bond, I A; Eguchi, S; Furuta, Y; Hearnshaw, J B; Kamiya, K; Kilmartin, P M; Kurata, Y; Masuda, K; Matsubara, Y; Muraki, Y; Noda, S; Okajima, K; Rakich, A; Rattenbury, N J; Sako, T; Sekiguchi, T; Sullivan, D J; Sumi, T; Tristram, P J; Yanagisawa, T; Yock, P C M; Gal-Yam, A; Lipkin, Y; Maoz, D; Ofek, E O; Udalski, A; Szewczyk, O; Zebrun, K; Soszynski, I; Szymanski, M K; Kubiak, M; Pietrzynski, G; Wyrzykowski, L

    2004-08-27

    Observations of the gravitational microlensing event MOA 2003-BLG-32/OGLE 2003-BLG-219 are presented, for which the peak magnification was over 500, the highest yet reported. Continuous observations around the peak enabled a sensitive search for planets orbiting the lens star. No planets were detected. Planets 1.3 times heavier than Earth were excluded from more than 50% of the projected annular region from approximately 2.3 to 3.6 astronomical units surrounding the lens star, Uranus-mass planets were excluded from 0.9 to 8.7 astronomical units, and planets 1.3 times heavier than Saturn were excluded from 0.2 to 60 astronomical units. These are the largest regions of sensitivity yet achieved in searches for extrasolar planets orbiting any star.

  1. Emerging technology for astronomical optics metrology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trumper, Isaac; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kim, Dae Wook

    2018-05-01

    Next generation astronomical optics will enable science discoveries across all fields and impact the way we perceive the Universe in which we live. To build these systems, optical metrology tools have been developed that push the boundary of what is possible. We present a summary of a few key metrology technologies that we believe are critical for the coming generation of optical surfaces.

  2. Astronomical and Atmospheric Observations in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and in Bede

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Härke, H.

    2012-01-01

    Textual sources of the early Middle Ages (fifth to tenth centuries AD) contain more astronomical observations than is popularly assumed. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle lists some 40 observations of astronomical and atmospheric events for the just over 600 years it covers. But the contexts in which these are set show that eclipses, comets, meteor showers and aurorae were seen as portents of evil events, not as objects of early scientific curiosity. The case of Bede in the early eighth century shows that this was true, to an extent, even for the educated ecclesiastical elite. BedeÕs eclipse records also appear to show that astronomical events could be used to explain unusual phenomena such as the postulated volcanic Ôdust-veilÕ event of AD 536.

  3. CALLISTO: scientific projects performed by high school students

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boer, Michel

    The Callisto project was initiated in 2002 by the "Lyće de l'Arc" (High School in Orange, e France) and the "Observatoire de Haute Provence". Its goal is to give the students motivation for scientific and technical studies: they have the possibility to perform scientific projects together with professional astronomers. The pupils work in groups of 3 to 4, each having a specific theme: geophysics, variable stars, small bodies of the solar system, mechanical and optical instrumentation. They follow a whole scientific approach, from the question to answer, the instrumental setup, acquisition, data reduction, and publication. During a week they are invited to observe using the OHP 1.20m and 0.80m, with the support of a professional astronomer. Some projects have been in fact derived from actual proposal accepted at OHP (e.g. rotation curves of binary asteroids). The best projects are considered for some competitions like ESO "catch a star", "Olympiade de Physique", etc. Since 2005 three high-schools participate to this project. The Callisto initiative has also produced the basis of a teacher training course. Callisto is an example of a succesful collaboration between an interdisciplinary team of teachers (physics, maths, philosophy, English...), a research institution (the OHP), and researchers.

  4. Exploring Seventh-Grade Students' and Pre-Service Science Teachers' Misconceptions in Astronomical Concepts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Korur, Fikret

    2015-01-01

    Pre-service science teachers' conceptual understanding of astronomical concepts and their misconceptions in these concepts is crucial to study since they will teach these subjects in middle schools after becoming teachers. This study aimed to explore both seventh-grade students' and the science teachers' understanding of astronomical concepts and…

  5. Carriers of the astronomical 2175 ? extinction feature

    SciTech Connect

    Bradley, J; Dai, Z; Ernie, R

    2004-07-20

    The 2175 {angstrom} extinction feature is by far the strongest spectral signature of interstellar dust observed by astronomers. Forty years after its discovery the origin of the feature and the nature of the carrier remain controversial. The feature is enigmatic because although its central wavelength is almost invariant its bandwidth varies strongly from one sightline to another, suggesting multiple carriers or a single carrier with variable properties. Using a monochromated transmission electron microscope and valence electron energy-loss spectroscopy we have detected a 5.7 eV (2175 {angstrom}) feature in submicrometer-sized interstellar grains within interplanetary dust particles (IDPs) collected in the stratosphere.more » The carriers are organic carbon and amorphous silicates that are abundant and closely associated with one another both in IDPs and in the interstellar medium. Multiple carriers rather than a single carrier may explain the invariant central wavelength and variable bandwidth of the astronomical 2175 {angstrom} feature.« less

  6. Nikolaev (Mykolayiv) Astronomical Observatory as the Object of the Ukrainian Tentative List WH UNESCO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinigin, Gennadiy; Pozhalova, Zhanna

    2012-09-01

    Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (NAO), one of the oldest scientific institutions of the South-Eastern Europe, was founded as a naval observatory in 1821 for providing the needs of the Russian Black Sea Navy. It is a historical and astronomical complex with a reserved territory of total area 7.1 hectares, situated in the central part of Mykolaiv city, Ukraine. The beginning of scientific research at the Observatory is connected with the activity of Karl Knorre, its first director. From 1912 up to 1991, NAO was one of the Southern departments of Pulkovo Observatory with the main purpose to spread the system of absolute catalogs to the Southern hemisphere and to carry out regular observations of the Solar system bodies. Since 1992 NAO has become an independent leading institution of Ukraine in the field of positional astronomy, dynamics of Solar system bodies, research of near-Earth space, astronomical instrumentation. In 2007, it was inscribed in the Tentative UNESCO List of WH (#5116). The most significant part of the complex is the Main building, which was built in the style of Classicism in 1821--1829 (the monument of architecture #535 in the state registry). Also, the astronomical pavilions (1875, 1913, 1955, etc.) and instruments were preserved. Among them three Repsold instruments: meridian circle (1834), portable circle (1868) and vertical circle (1897). The unique astronomical and navigational devices, the collection of astronomical clocks are present in the observatory museum and the paper archive since the foundation of observatory is preserved.

  7. Radio Synthesis Imaging - A High Performance Computing and Communications Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crutcher, Richard M.

    The National Science Foundation has funded a five-year High Performance Computing and Communications project at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) for the direct implementation of several of the computing recommendations of the Astronomy and Astrophysics Survey Committee (the "Bahcall report"). This paper is a summary of the project goals and a progress report. The project will implement a prototype of the next generation of astronomical telescope systems - remotely located telescopes connected by high-speed networks to very high performance, scalable architecture computers and on-line data archives, which are accessed by astronomers over Gbit/sec networks. Specifically, a data link has been installed between the BIMA millimeter-wave synthesis array at Hat Creek, California and NCSA at Urbana, Illinois for real-time transmission of data to NCSA. Data are automatically archived, and may be browsed and retrieved by astronomers using the NCSA Mosaic software. In addition, an on-line digital library of processed images will be established. BIMA data will be processed on a very high performance distributed computing system, with I/O, user interface, and most of the software system running on the NCSA Convex C3880 supercomputer or Silicon Graphics Onyx workstations connected by HiPPI to the high performance, massively parallel Thinking Machines Corporation CM-5. The very computationally intensive algorithms for calibration and imaging of radio synthesis array observations will be optimized for the CM-5 and new algorithms which utilize the massively parallel architecture will be developed. Code running simultaneously on the distributed computers will communicate using the Data Transport Mechanism developed by NCSA. The project will also use the BLANCA Gbit/s testbed network between Urbana and Madison, Wisconsin to connect an Onyx workstation in the University of Wisconsin Astronomy Department to the NCSA CM-5, for development of long

  8. Before words: reading western astronomical texts in early nineteenth-century Japan.

    PubMed

    Frumer, Yulia

    2016-04-01

    In 1803, the most prominent Japanese astronomer of his time, Takahashi Yoshitoki, received a newly imported Dutch translation of J. J. Lalande's 'Astronomie'. He could not read Dutch, yet he dedicated almost a year to a close examination of this massive work, taking notes and contemplating his own astronomical practices. How did he read a book he could not read? Following the clues Yoshitoki left in his notes, we discover that he found meanings not only in words, but also in what are often taken for granted or considered to be auxiliary tools for data manipulation, such as symbols, units, tables, and diagrams. His rendering of these non-verbal textual elements into a familiar format was crucial for Yoshitoki's reading, and constituted the initial step in the process of integrating Lalande's astronomy into Japanese astronomical practices, and the subsequent translation of the text into Japanese.

  9. Sports Stars: Analyzing the Performance of Astronomers at Visualization-based Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fluke, C. J.; Parrington, L.; Hegarty, S.; MacMahon, C.; Morgan, S.; Hassan, A. H.; Kilborn, V. A.

    2017-05-01

    In this data-rich era of astronomy, there is a growing reliance on automated techniques to discover new knowledge. The role of the astronomer may change from being a discoverer to being a confirmer. But what do astronomers actually look at when they distinguish between “sources” and “noise?” What are the differences between novice and expert astronomers when it comes to visual-based discovery? Can we identify elite talent or coach astronomers to maximize their potential for discovery? By looking to the field of sports performance analysis, we consider an established, domain-wide approach, where the expertise of the viewer (i.e., a member of the coaching team) plays a crucial role in identifying and determining the subtle features of gameplay that provide a winning advantage. As an initial case study, we investigate whether the SportsCode performance analysis software can be used to understand and document how an experienced Hi astronomer makes discoveries in spectral data cubes. We find that the process of timeline-based coding can be applied to spectral cube data by mapping spectral channels to frames within a movie. SportsCode provides a range of easy to use methods for annotation, including feature-based codes and labels, text annotations associated with codes, and image-based drawing. The outputs, including instance movies that are uniquely associated with coded events, provide the basis for a training program or team-based analysis that could be used in unison with discipline specific analysis software. In this coordinated approach to visualization and analysis, SportsCode can act as a visual notebook, recording the insight and decisions in partnership with established analysis methods. Alternatively, in situ annotation and coding of features would be a valuable addition to existing and future visualization and analysis packages.

  10. Urania in the Marketplace: Astronomical Imagery in Early Twentieth-Century Advertizing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rumstay, Kenneth S.

    2010-01-01

    The pages of popular magazines such as Sky and Telescope and Astronomy are filled with advertisements for telescopes and other equipment. However, during the past century astronomical imagery has been widely used to promote distinctly non-astronomical products and services. One of the earliest and most famous examples is the 1893 Chicago newspaper advertisement for Kirk's Soap, which was inspired by the opening of the Yerkes Observatory. A survey of popular magazines published in America during the first half of the twentieth century suggests that these advertisements fall into four categories: 1) Astronomy is universally regarded as an exact and precise science. Manufacturers of mechanical devices may employ images of telescopes or astronomers at work to suggest that their products meet these same standards of quality. This was primarily the case with makers of automobiles and automotive products, although the Longines Watch Company ran an extensive series of ads featuring observatories. 2) The heavens induce a sense of wonder in most people, and advertisers may locate their products in an a celestial setting to give them an otherworldly flavor. 3) Astronomical observatories themselves are viewed as exotic settings, and have provided backgrounds for automotive and travel ads. They may also appear in advertisements for products used in their construction. 4) Finally, newsworthy astronomical events will inspire advertisers to associate their products with that event, in order to capitalize upon the publicity. This was particularly true in the case of the 1910 passage of Halley's Comet and the 1948 opening of the 200-inch Hale telescope at Mt. Palomar. Examples of magazine advertisements from each category are presented for comparison. This work was supported by a faculty development grant from Valdosta State University.

  11. Momument at Pad 14 honoring Project Mercury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1966-01-01

    Momument at Pad 14 honoring Project Mercury. The Arabic number 7 represents the seven original astronauts. The other figure is the astronomical symbol of the Planet Mercury. In background is the Gemini 12 Agena Target Docking Vehicle atop its Atlas launch vehicle at Cape Kennedy, Florida.

  12. Present status of astronomical constants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukushima, T.

    Given was the additional information to the previous report on the recent progress in the determinations of astronomical constants (Fukushima 2000). First noted was the revision of LG as 6.969290134×10-10 based on the proposal to shift its status from a primary to a defining constant (Petit 2000). Next focused was the significant update of the correction to the current precession constant, Δp, based on the recent LLR-based determination (Chapront et al. 2000) as -0.3164+/-0.0030"/cy. By combining this and the equal weighted average of VLBI determinations (Mathews et al. 2000; Petrov 2000; Shirai and Fukushima 2000; Vondrak and Ron 2000) as -0.2968+/-0.0043"/cy, we derived the best estimate of precession constant as p = 5028.790+/-0.005"/cy. Also redetermined were some other quantities related to the precession formula; namely the offsets of Celestial Ephemeris Pole of the International Celestial Reference System as &Deltaψ0sinɛ0 = (-17.0+/-0.3) mas and Δɛ0 = (-5.1+/-0.3) mas. As a result, the obliquity of the ecliptic at the epoch J2000.0 was estimated as ɛ0 = 23°26'21."4059+/-0."0003. As a summary, presented was the (revised) IAU 2000 File of Current Best Estimates of astronomical constants, which is to replace the former 1994 version (Standish 1995).

  13. Astronomers to Mark 20th Anniversary of the Very Large Array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-07-01

    On August 23, scientists will mark the 20th anniversary of the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA), the most powerful, flexible and widely-used radio telescope in the world. "Twenty years ago, the VLA brought dramatic new observing capabilities to the world's astronomers, and today there is hardly a branch of astronomy that has not been profoundly impacted by the prolific research output of this radio telescope," said Dr. Paul Vanden Bout, Director of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). The anniversary will be marked in a ceremony at NRAO's Array Operations Center in Socorro, NM. The keynote speaker for this ceremony will be U.S. Senator Pete V. Domenici, R-NM. Also speaking will be Dr. Rita Colwell, NSF Director; Dr. Anneila Sargent, president-elect of the American Astronomical Society; Vanden Bout; Dr. Riccardo Giacconi, president of Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI); Dr. Paul Martin, chairman of the AUI board of trustees; and Dr. Miller Goss, NRAO's director of VLA/VLBA operations. "More than 2,200 researchers from hundreds of institutions around the world have used the VLA for more than 10,000 observing projects," said Vanden Bout. "Research conducted at the VLA has had a major impact across the entire breadth of astronomy, from nearby objects such as the Sun and planets of our own Solar System, to forming galaxies and quasars billions of light-years away in the farthest reaches of the Universe," Vanden Bout added. Major discoveries made by the VLA have ranged from the surprising detection of water ice on Mercury, the nearest planet to the Sun, to the first detection of radio emission from a Gamma Ray Burster in 1997. The VLA also discovered the first "Einstein Ring" gravitational lens in 1987, and the first "microquasar" within our own Milky Way Galaxy in 1994. Over the past two decades, the VLA also has made major contributions to our understanding of active regions on the Sun, the physics of superfast "cosmic jets" of material

  14. Prospective Science Teachers' Conceptions about Astronomical Subjects

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Küçüközer, Hüseyin

    2007-01-01

    The main objective of this study was to identify prospective science teachers' conceptions on basic astronomical phenomena. A questionnaire consisting of nine open-ended questions was administered to 327 prospective science teachers. The questionnaire was constructed after extensive review of the literature and took into consideration the reported…

  15. Largest Solar Flare on Record

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    The largest solar flare ever recorded occurred at 4:51 p.m. EDT, on Monday, April 2, 2001. as Observed by the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) satellite. Solar flares, among the solar systems mightiest eruptions, are tremendous explosions in the atmosphere of the Sun capable of releasing as much energy as a billion megatons of TNT. Caused by the sudden release of magnetic energy, in just a few seconds, solar flares can accelerate solar particles to very high velocities, almost to the speed of light, and heat solar material to tens of millions of degrees. The recent explosion from the active region near the sun's northwest limb hurled a coronal mass ejection into space at a whopping speed of roughly 7.2 million kilometers per hour. Luckily, the flare was not aimed directly towards Earth. Second to the most severe R5 classification of radio blackout, this flare produced an R4 blackout as rated by the NOAA SEC. This classification measures the disruption in radio communications. Launched December 2, 1995 atop an ATLAS-IIAS expendable launch vehicle, the SOHO is a cooperative effort involving NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA). (Image courtesy NASA Goddard SOHO Project office)

  16. Astronomical Surveys, Catalogs, Databases, and Archives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2016-06-01

    All-sky and large-area astronomical surveys and their cataloged data over the whole range of electromagnetic spectrum are reviewed, from γ-ray to radio, such as Fermi-GLAST and INTEGRAL in γ-ray, ROSAT, XMM and Chandra in X-ray, GALEX in UV, SDSS and several POSS I and II based catalogues (APM, MAPS, USNO, GSC) in optical range, 2MASS in NIR, WISE and AKARI IRC in MIR, IRAS and AKARI FIS in FIR, NVSS and FIRST in radio and many others, as well as most important surveys giving optical images (DSS I and II, SDSS, etc.), proper motions (Tycho, USNO, Gaia), variability (GCVS, NSVS, ASAS, Catalina, Pan-STARRS) and spectroscopic data (FBS, SBS, Case, HQS, HES, SDSS, CALIFA, GAMA). Most important astronomical databases and archives are reviewed as well, including Wide-Field Plate DataBase (WFPDB), ESO, HEASARC, IRSA and MAST archives, CDS SIMBAD, VizieR and Aladin, NED and HyperLEDA extragalactic databases, ADS and astro-ph services. They are powerful sources for many-sided efficient research using Virtual Observatory tools. Using and analysis of Big Data accumulated in astronomy lead to many new discoveries.

  17. Snorkelling between the stars: submarine methods for astronomical observations.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velasco, S.; Quevedo, E.; Font, J.; Oscoz, A.; López, R. L.; Puga, M.; Rebolo, R.; Hernáandez Brito, J.; Llinas, O.; Marrero Callico, G.; Sarmiento, R.

    2017-03-01

    Trying to reach diffraction-limited astronomical observations from ground-based telescopes is very challenging due to the atmospheric effects contributing to a general blurring of the images. However, astronomy is not the only science facing turbulence problems; obtaining quality images of the undersea world is as ambitious as it is on the sky. One of the solutions contemplated to reach high-resolution images is the use of multiple frames of the same target, known as fusion super-resolution (Quevedo et al. 2015), which is the principle for Lucky Imaging (Velasco et al. 2016). Here we present the successful result of joining efforts between the undersea and the astronomical research done at the Canary Islands.

  18. An Astronomical Journey: One School's Experience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gibert, Michael; Tedd, Bernie

    2016-01-01

    Raising the profile of physics is particularly important in girls' schools. Here we describe a range of astronomical activities and observations that we have used, which we hope will inspire teachers at other schools to do likewise.

  19. ODI - Portal, Pipeline, and Archive (ODI-PPA): a web-based astronomical compute archive, visualization, and analysis service

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gopu, Arvind; Hayashi, Soichi; Young, Michael D.; Harbeck, Daniel R.; Boroson, Todd; Liu, Wilson; Kotulla, Ralf; Shaw, Richard; Henschel, Robert; Rajagopal, Jayadev; Stobie, Elizabeth; Knezek, Patricia; Martin, R. Pierre; Archbold, Kevin

    2014-07-01

    The One Degree Imager-Portal, Pipeline, and Archive (ODI-PPA) is a web science gateway that provides astronomers a modern web interface that acts as a single point of access to their data, and rich computational and visualization capabilities. Its goal is to support scientists in handling complex data sets, and to enhance WIYN Observatory's scientific productivity beyond data acquisition on its 3.5m telescope. ODI-PPA is designed, with periodic user feedback, to be a compute archive that has built-in frameworks including: (1) Collections that allow an astronomer to create logical collations of data products intended for publication, further research, instructional purposes, or to execute data processing tasks (2) Image Explorer and Source Explorer, which together enable real-time interactive visual analysis of massive astronomical data products within an HTML5 capable web browser, and overlaid standard catalog and Source Extractor-generated source markers (3) Workflow framework which enables rapid integration of data processing pipelines on an associated compute cluster and users to request such pipelines to be executed on their data via custom user interfaces. ODI-PPA is made up of several light-weight services connected by a message bus; the web portal built using Twitter/Bootstrap, AngularJS and jQuery JavaScript libraries, and backend services written in PHP (using the Zend framework) and Python; it leverages supercomputing and storage resources at Indiana University. ODI-PPA is designed to be reconfigurable for use in other science domains with large and complex datasets, including an ongoing offshoot project for electron microscopy data.

  20. Directory of astronomical data files

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    This Directory of Astronomical Data Files was prepared by the Data Task Force of the Interagency Coordination Committee for Astronomy (ICCA) in cooperation with the National Space Science Data Center (NSSDC). The purpose of the Directory is to provide a listing which will enable a user to locate stellar and extragalactic data sources keyed along with sufficient descriptive information to permit him to assess the value of the files for his use as well as the status and availability of the compilations.

  1. Astronomical forcing of a Middle Permian chert sequence in Chaohu, South China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Xu; Zhou, Yaoqi; Hinnov, Linda A.

    2015-07-01

    Astronomical forcing has been shown to be a fundamental driver of climate change through geological time. Pelagic, bedded cherts deposited in Mesozoic ocean basins with chert-mudstone cycles have been shown to contain the imprint of Milankovitch astronomical climate forcing. In the Chaohu region, South China, we studied a Middle Permian radiolarian chert sequence (Gufeng Formation) with chert-mudstone couplets reminiscent of the Mesozoic cherts, but deposited on a continental shelf. Spectral analysis of lithologic bed thickness data from two sections of this chert sequence reveals that 13 cm to 20 cm chert-mudstone cycles in the stratigraphic domain match theoretical 32-kyr Middle Permian obliquity cycling, together with a hierarchy of other cycles with 12 cm, 9 cm, 7 cm, 6.6 cm and 5.4 cm wavelengths. Tuning the 13 cm to 20 cm stratigraphic cycles to Earth's obliquity cycle periodicity indicates that the cm-scale cycles are precession-scale variations with a strong ∼400 kyr amplitude modulation. Tuning to theoretical precession terms provides further support for the astronomical forcing of the chert sequence. We propose that monsoon-controlled upwelling contributed to the development of the chert-mudstone cycles. A seasonal monsoon controlled by astronomical forcing (i.e., insolation) influenced the intensity of upwelling. Stronger upwelling increased radiolarian productivity in the surface ocean, increasing silica deposition. Glacio-eustatic oscillations from ice sheet dynamics in southern Gondwana modulated terrigenous mud flux to the basin. The two processes jointly contributed to the astronomical rhythms of these tropical chert-mudstone sequences, which are characterized by comparably strong obliquity and precession responses. Subsequent diagenesis distorted the chert and mudstone layering, but not enough to destroy the original stratigraphic patterns. The resulting astronomical time scale (ATS) assumes a Roadian/Wordian boundary age of 268.8 Ma for the

  2. School Astronomy Club: from Project to Knowledge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Folhas, Alvaro

    2016-04-01

    Prepare a generation of young people for the challenges of the future is a task which forces us to rethink the school, not just for being difficult, but also because students feel that the school has very little to offer, especially something that interests them. Thus, the school is dysfunctional, is ill, and needs prompt treatment. School have to adjust to the new times, and this does not mean changing the old blackboards by advanced interactive whiteboards. The school has to find the way to the students with something that seduce them: the Challenge. The Astronomy Club that I lead in my school is essentially a Project space. Students who voluntarily joined the club, organize themselves according to their interests around projects whose outcome is not defined from the beginning, which requires them to do, undo and redo. Which obliges them to feel the need to ask for help to mathematics or physics to achieve answers, to feel the passion to study with a genuine purpose of learning. Some examples of the work: The younger students are challenged to reproduce the historical astronomical experiments that have opened the doors of knowledge such as the Eratosthenes experiment to determine the perimeter of the Earth (on equinox), or by using congruent triangles, determine the diameter the sun. These students are driven to establish distance scales in the solar system, which, to their astonishment, allows them to clear misconceptions that arise from some pictures of books and allows them to have a scientifically correct idea of the planetary orbit and distance separating the planets of the Solar System. For students from 15 to 18 years, I have to raise the level of the challenges and use the natural tendency of this age bracket to assert making new and exciting things. To this purpose, I am fortunate to have the support of large organizations like NUCLIO, ESA, CERN, and Go-Lab Project, Inspiring Science Education, Open Discovery Space and Global Hands on Universe. Through

  3. Letters from Augustin Hallerstein, an eighteenth century Jesuit astronomer in Beijing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juznic, Stanislav

    2008-11-01

    Augustin Hallerstein (1703-1774) was the last astronomer sent to Beijing by the Society of Jesus. He left Europe for China in his mid-thirties, and continued to send letters back home until he died thirty-five years later. These letters and reports contained important information on Chinese astronomy, and were read in the courts of Europe; many were also published. Hallerstein was one of the most important European astronomers in Beijing, his European publications surpassing those of his predecessors.

  4. Next Generation Astronomical Data Processing using Big Data Technologies from the Apache Software Foundation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattmann, Chris

    2014-04-01

    In this era of exascale instruments for astronomy we must naturally develop next generation capabilities for the unprecedented data volume and velocity that will arrive due to the veracity of these ground-based sensor and observatories. Integrating scientific algorithms stewarded by scientific groups unobtrusively and rapidly; intelligently selecting data movement technologies; making use of cloud computing for storage and processing; and automatically extracting text and metadata and science from any type of file are all needed capabilities in this exciting time. Our group at NASA JPL has promoted the use of open source data management technologies available from the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) in pursuit of constructing next generation data management and processing systems for astronomical instruments including the Expanded Very Large Array (EVLA) in Socorro, NM and the Atacama Large Milimetre/Sub Milimetre Array (ALMA); as well as for the KAT-7 project led by SKA South Africa as a precursor to the full MeerKAT telescope. In addition we are funded currently by the National Science Foundation in the US to work with MIT Haystack Observatory and the University of Cambridge in the UK to construct a Radio Array of Portable Interferometric Devices (RAPID) that will undoubtedly draw from the rich technology advances underway. NASA JPL is investing in a strategic initiative for Big Data that is pulling in these capabilities and technologies for astronomical instruments and also for Earth science remote sensing. In this talk I will describe the above collaborative efforts underway and point to solutions in open source from the Apache Software Foundation that can be deployed and used today and that are already bringing our teams and projects benefits. I will describe how others can take advantage of our experience and point towards future application and contribution of these tools.

  5. VLA Expansion Project Gets Strong Endorsement From National Committee

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-05-01

    A project to expand the National Science Foundation's famed Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope, improving its scientific capabilities tenfold, has received strong endorsement from a prestigous national panel of astronomers given the task of setting priorities for astronomical projects in the next decade. The Astronomy and Astrophysics Survey Committee, established by the National Research Council, the working arm of the National Academy of Sciences, gave the VLA Expansion one of the top ratings among proposed ground-based observatory projects in a report issued today. Center of the VLA "This ranking by the Survey Committee, which heard from hundreds of astronomers around the country, shows that the astronomical community places great importance on expanding the VLA," said Paul Vanden Bout, Director of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). "The VLA is a unique and critical resource for the world's astronomers, and the VLA Expansion Project will ensure that scientists have a state-of-the-art tool to meet the astronomical research challenges of the 21st Century," Vanden Bout added. The Survey Committee report listed the Expanded VLA as an important contributor to new understanding in three high-priority research areas for the next decade: studies of star and planet formation; research into black holes; and unraveling details about the "dawn of the modern universe." The VLA Expansion Project will use modern electronics and computer technology to greatly improve the VLA's ability to observe faint celestial objects and to analyze their radio emissions. A set of eight new dish antennas, added to the current 27-antenna system, will allow the VLA to produce images with ten times greater detail. The project will build on the VLA's current infrastructure, including its 230-ton dish antennas, the railroad tracks for moving those antennas, and the existing buildings and access roads. The Expanded VLA will be operated by the same skilled staff present today

  6. C++, objected-oriented programming, and astronomical data models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Farris, A.

    1992-01-01

    Contemporary astronomy is characterized by increasingly complex instruments and observational techniques, higher data collection rates, and large data archives, placing severe stress on software analysis systems. The object-oriented paradigm represents a significant new approach to software design and implementation that holds great promise for dealing with this increased complexity. The basic concepts of this approach will be characterized in contrast to more traditional procedure-oriented approaches. The fundamental features of objected-oriented programming will be discussed from a C++ programming language perspective, using examples familiar to astronomers. This discussion will focus on objects, classes and their relevance to the data type system; the principle of information hiding; and the use of inheritance to implement generalization/specialization relationships. Drawing on the object-oriented approach, features of a new database model to support astronomical data analysis will be presented.

  7. Communicating the Science of Global Warming — the Role of Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, Jeffrey

    2018-06-01

    Global Warming is one of the most important and issues of our times, yet it is widely misunderstood among the general public (and politicians!). The American Astronomical Society has already joined many other scientific organizations in advocating for action on global warming (by supporting the AGU statement on global warming), but we as astronomers can do much more. The high public profile of astronomy gives us a unique platform — and credibility as scientists — for doing our part to educate the public about the underlying science of global warming. And while astronomers are not climate scientists, we use the same basic physics, and many aspects of global warming science come directly from astronomy, including the ways in which we measure the heat-absorbing potential of carbon dioxide and the hard evidence of greenhouse warming provided by studies of Venus. In this session, I will briefly introduce a few methods for communicating about global warming that I believe you will find effective in your own education efforts.

  8. Mapping Biomass for REDD in the Largest Forest of Central Africa: the Democratic Republic of Congo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shapiro, Aurelie; Saatchi, Sassan

    2014-05-01

    With the support of the International Climate Initiative (ICI) of the Federal Ministry of the Environment, Conservation, and Nuclear Security, the implementation of the German Development Bank KfW, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Germany, the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and local DRC partners will produce a national scale biomass map for the entire forest coverage of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) along with feasibility assessments of different forest protection measures within a framework of a REDD+ model project. The « Carbon Map and Model (CO2M&M) » project will produce a national forest biomass map for the DRC, which will enable quantitative assessments of carbon stocks and emissions in the largest forest of the Congo Basin. This effort will support the national REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation) program in DRC, which plays a major role in sustainable development and poverty alleviation. This map will be developed from field data, complemented by airborne LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) and aerial photos, systematically sampled throughout the forests of the DRC and up-scaled to satellite images to accurately estimate carbon content in all forested areas. The second component of the project is to develop specific approaches for model REDD projects in key landscapes. This project represents the largest LiDAR-derived mapping effort in Africa, under unprecedented logistical constraints, which will provide one of the poorest nations in the world with the richest airborne and satellites derived datasets for analyzing forest structure, biomass and biodiversity.

  9. A Review of High School Level Astronomy Student Research Projects Over the Last Two Decades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fitzgerald, M. T.; Hollow, R.; Rebull, L. M.; Danaia, L.; McKinnon, D. H.

    2014-09-01

    Since the early 1990s with the arrival of a variety of new technologies, the capacity for authentic astronomical research at the high school level has skyrocketed. This potential, however, has not realised the bright-eyed hopes and dreams of the early pioneers who expected to revolutionise science education through the use of telescopes and other astronomical instrumentation in the classroom. In this paper, a general history and analysis of these attempts is presented. We define what we classify as an Astronomy Research in the Classroom (ARiC) project and note the major dimensions on which these projects differ before describing the 22 major student research projects active since the early 1990s. This is followed by a discussion of the major issues identified that affected the success of these projects and provide suggestions for similar attempts in the future.

  10. Block iterative restoration of astronomical images with the massively parallel processor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heap, Sara R.; Lindler, Don J.

    1987-01-01

    A method is described for algebraic image restoration capable of treating astronomical images. For a typical 500 x 500 image, direct algebraic restoration would require the solution of a 250,000 x 250,000 linear system. The block iterative approach is used to reduce the problem to solving 4900 121 x 121 linear systems. The algorithm was implemented on the Goddard Massively Parallel Processor, which can solve a 121 x 121 system in approximately 0.06 seconds. Examples are shown of the results for various astronomical images.

  11. Surveys, Fields, and Collections in the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive at PARI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. D.; Castelaz, M. W.; Barker, T.

    2014-01-01

    A diverse set of photometric, astrometric, spectral and surface brightness data exist on more than 100 years of photographic glass plates. About 20 percent of the plates in North America are located in the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI). APDA was established in November 2007 and is dedicated to the task of collecting, restoring, preserving and storing astronomical photographic data and PARI continues to accept collections. APDA is also tasked with scanning each image and establishing a database of images that can be accessed via the Internet by the global community of scientists, researchers and students. APDA is a new type of astronomical observatory - one that harnesses analog data of the night sky taken for more than a century and making that data available in a digital format. APDA currently has 50 collections with more than 250,000 plates taken for QSO identification, parallax measurements, spectral classification and monitoring, Magellanic Cloud studies, H-alpha emission star surveys, novae evolution, and astrometry of asteroids, outer planet satellites and Pluto. Some examples of collections include the complete set of the Henize H-alpha Southern Survey plates taken between 1949 and 1952 (Henize 1954, AJ, 59, 325), the Case Western Objective Prism All Sky Survey from 1958-1976 (e.g. Pesch, Sanduleak, and Stephenson 1996, ApJS, 103, 513), and QSO Survey from 1980 to 1991 (e.g. Pesch and Stephenson 1983, ApJS, 51, 171). We feature the contents of the APDA collections to provide the opportunity to the astronomical community to advance new and established areas of study.

  12. New knowledge in determining the astronomical orientation of Incas object in Ollantaytambo, Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanzalová, K.; Klokočník, J.; Kostelecký, J.

    2014-06-01

    This paper deals about astronomical orientation of Incas objects in Ollantaytambo, which is located about 35 km southeast from Machu Picchu, about 40 km northwest from Cusco, and lies in the Urubamba valley. Everybody writing about Ollantaytambo, shoud read Protzen (1993). He devoted his monograph to description and interpretation of that locality. Book of Salazar and Salazar (2005) deals, among others, with the orientation of objects in Ollantaytambo with respect to the cardinal direction. Zawaski and Malville (2007) documented astronomical context of major monuments of nine sites in Peru, including Ollantaytambo. We tested astronomical orientation in these places and confirm or disprove hypothesis about purpose of Incas objects. For assessment orientation of objects we used our measurements and also satellite images on Google Earth and digital elevation model from ASTER. The satellite images used to approximate estimation of astronomical orientation. The digital elevation model is useful in the mountains, where we need the really horizon for a calculation of sunset and sunrise on specific days (solstices), which were for Incas people very important. By Incas is very famous that they worshiped the Sun. According to him they determined when to plant and when to harvest the crop. In this paper we focused on Temple of the Sun, also known the Wall of six monoliths. We tested which astronomical phenomenon is connected with this Temple. First, we tested winter solstice sunrise and the rides of the Pleiades for the epochs 2000, 1500 and 1000 A.D. According with our results the Temple isn't connected neither with winter solstice sunrise nor with the Pleiades. Then we tested also winter solstice sunset. We tried to use the line from an observation point near ruins of the Temple of Sun, to west-north, in direction to sunset. The astronomical azimuth from this point was about 5° less then we need. From this results we found, that is possible to find another observation

  13. Planet Formation in Action? - Astronomers may have found the first object clearing its path in the natal disc surrounding a young star

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2011-02-01

    , Garching, Germany), G. A. Blake (California Institute of Technology), N. Huélamo (Centro de Astrobiología, ESAC, Spain), P. Tuthill (University of Sydney, Australia), M. Ireland (University of Sydney), A. Kraus (University of Hawaii) and G. Chauvin (Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble, France). ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive astronomical observatory. It is supported by 15 countries: Austria, Belgium, Brazil, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world's most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory and VISTA, the world's largest survey telescope. ESO is the European partner of a revolutionary astronomical telescope ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. ESO is currently planning a 42-metre European Extremely Large optical/near-infrared Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become "the world's biggest eye on the sky".

  14. AstroFrauenNetzwerk Survey Results - Career situation of female astronomers in Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fohlmeister, J.; Helling, Ch.

    2012-04-01

    We survey the job situation of women in astronomy in Germany and of German women abroad and review indicators for their career development. Our sample includes women astronomers from all academic levels from doctoral students to professors, as well as female astronomers who have left the field. We find that networking and human support are among the most important factors for success. Experience shows that students should carefully choose their supervisor and collect practical knowledge abroad. We reflect the private situation of female German astronomers and find that prejudices are abundant, and are perceived as discriminating. We identify reasons why women are more likely than men to quit astronomy after they obtain their PhD degree. We give recommendations to young students on what to pay attention to in order to be on the successful path in astronomy.

  15. BOOK REVIEW: The Wandering Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swinbank, Elizabeth

    2000-09-01

    Fans of Patrick Moore will like this book. I enjoyed it more than I expected, having anticipated a collection of personal anecdotes of the type favoured by certain tedious after-dinner speakers. Some of the 41 short items it contains do tend towards that category, but there are also some nuggets which might enliven your physics teaching. For example, did you know that, in a murder trial in 1787, the defendant's belief that the Sun was inhabited was cited as evidence of his insanity? This was despite his views being shared by many astronomers of the day including William Herschel. Or that Clyde Tombaugh had a cat called Pluto after the planet he discovered, which was itself named by an eleven-year-old girl? Another gem concerns a brief flurry, in the early 1990s, over a suspected planet orbiting a pulsar; variations in the arrival time of its radio pulses indicated the presence of an orbiting body. These shifts were later found to arise from an error in a computer program that corrected for the Earth's motion. The programmer had assumed a circular orbit for the Earth whereas it is actually elliptical. The book is clearly intended for amateur astronomers and followers of Patrick Moore's TV programmes. There is plenty of astronomy, with an emphasis on the solar system, but very little astrophysics. The author's metricophobia means that quantities are given in imperial units throughout, with metric equivalents added in brackets (by an editor, I suspect) which can get irritating, particularly as powers-of-ten notation is avoided. It is quite a novelty to see the temperature for hydrogen fusion quoted as 18 000 000 °F (10 000 000 °C). By way of contrast, astronomical terms are used freely - ecliptic, first-magnitude star, and so on. Such terms are defined in a glossary at the end, but attention is not drawn to this and I only stumbled across it by chance. Patrick Moore obviously knows his public, and this book will serve them well. For physics teachers and students

  16. The Climate Response to the Astronomical Forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crucifix, M.; Loutre, M. F.; Berger, A.

    2006-08-01

    Links between climate and Earth’s orbit have been proposed for about 160 years. Two decisive advances towards an astronomical theory of palæoclimates were Milankovitch’s theory of insolation (1941) and independent findings, in 1976, of a double precession frequency peak in marine sediment data and from celestial mechanics calculations. The present chapter reviews three essential elements of any astronomical theory of climate: (1) to calculate the orbital elements, (2) to infer insolation changes from climatic precession, obliquity and eccentricity, and (3) to estimate the impact of these variations on climate. The Louvain-la-Neuve climate-ice sheet model has been an important instrument for confirming the relevance of Milankovitch’s theory, but it also evidences the critical role played by greenhouse gases during periods of low eccentricity. It is recognised today that climatic interactions at the global scale were involved in the processes of glacial inception and deglaciation. Three examples are given, related to the responses of the carbon cycle, hydrological cycle, and the terrestrial biosphere, respectively. The chapter concludes on an outlook on future research directions on this topic.

  17. Division B Commission 25: Astronomical Photometry and Polarimetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Alistair; Adelman, Saul; Milone, Eugene; Anthony-Twarog, Barbara; Bastien, Pierre; Chen, Wen Ping; Howell, Steve; Knude, Jens; Kurtz, Donald; Magalhães, Antonio Mario; Menzies, John; Smith, Allyn; Volk, Kevin

    2016-04-01

    Commission 25 (C25) deals with the techniques and issues involved with the measurement of optical and infrared radiation intensities and polarization from astronomical sources. As such, in recent years attention has focused on photometric standard stars, atmospheric extinction, photometric passbands, transformation between systems, nomenclature, and observing and reduction techniques. At the start of the trimester C25 changed its name from Stellar Photometry and Polarization to Astronomical Photometry and Polarization so as to explicitly include in its mandate particular issues arising from the measurement of resolved sources, given the importance of photometric redshifts of distant galaxies for many of the large photometric surveys now underway. We begin by summarizing commission activities over the 2012-2014 period, follow with a report on Polarimetry, continue with Photometry topics that have been of interest to C25 members, and conclude with a Vision for the Future.

  18. Astronomical Correlates of Architecture and Landscape in Mesoamerica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Šprajc, Ivan

    Mesoamerican civic and ceremonial buildings were largely oriented to astronomical phenomena on the horizon, mostly to sunrises and sunsets on particular dates; some orientations were probably intended to mark major lunar standstills and Venus extremes. Solar orientations must have had a practical function, allowing the use of observational calendars that facilitated a proper scheduling of agricultural activities. Moreover, some important buildings seem to have been erected on carefully selected places, with the purpose of employing prominent peaks on the local horizon as natural markers of sunrises and sunsets on relevant dates. However, the characteristics of buildings incorporating deliberate alignments, their predominant clockwise skew from cardinal directions, and their relations to the surrounding natural and cultural landscape reveal that the architectural and urban planning in Mesoamerica was dictated by a complex set of rules, in which astronomical considerations were embedded in a broader framework of cosmological concepts substantiated by political ideology.

  19. At What Ages Did Astronomers Write Their Most Important Papers?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abt, Helmut A.

    2016-09-01

    In 1983 I found that the most productive ages for research astronomers was 40-75 years, contradicting the frequent statement that a scientist’s best work is done before the age of 35. Now most scientists work in small to large teams, unlike the individual research usually done previously. How has that affected the productive careers of astronomers? A new study of 14 recent Russell Lecturers shows a peak in productivity at age 33 and more than half that peak during 25-56 years, in agreement with results in other sciences. Nevertheless, 33% of their best work was done after the age of 50 years.

  20. Contributions of the Spanish Astronomical Society to the International Year of Astronomy 2009

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montesinos, B.

    The Spanish Astronomical Society, SEA in the Spanish acronym of "Sociedad Española de Astronomía", is one of the many institutions contributing to the large number of activities coordinated by the Spanish node of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA-2009). In this paper I describe the activities programmed with a large participation of members of the Society.

  1. MOEMs devices designed and tested for future astronomical instrumentation in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zamkotsian, Frédéric; Lanzoni, Patrick; Waldis, Severin; Noell, Wilfried; Conedera, Veronique; Fabre, Norbert; Viard, Thierry; Buisset, Christophe

    2017-11-01

    Next generation of astronomical instrumentation for space telescopes requires Micro-Opto-Electro- Mechanical Systems (MOEMS) with remote control capability and cryogenic operation. MOEMS devices have the capability to tailor the incoming light in terms of intensity and object selection with programmable slit masks, in terms of phase and wavefront control with micro-deformable mirrors, and finally in terms of spectrum with programmable diffraction gratings. Applications are multi-object spectroscopy (MOS), wavefront correction and programmable spectrographs. We are engaged since several years in the design, realization and characterization of MOEMS devices suited for astronomical instrumentation.

  2. Materials for VPHGs: practical considerations in the case of astronomical instrumentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bianco, Andrea; Pariani, Giorgio; Zanutta, Alessio; Bertarelli, Chiara

    2012-09-01

    Volume Phase Holographic Gratings are interesting dispersing elements for astronomical instrumentation. An important point, in the realization of the grating, is the choice of the holographic material. Dichromated Gelatines (DCGs) are the best candidate, but they show some drawback especially regarding their water sensitivity and the complex developing process required to enhance their performances. New holographic materials are becoming interesting, such as photopolymers and photochromic materials. An exhaustive review of these classes of materials will be reported and their performances compared to those of DCGs, focusing mainly to the astronomical instrumentation field.

  3. Subarray Processing for Projection-based RFI Mitigation in Radio Astronomical Interferometers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burnett, Mitchell C.; Jeffs, Brian D.; Black, Richard A.; Warnick, Karl F.

    2018-04-01

    Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) is a major problem for observations in Radio Astronomy (RA). Adaptive spatial filtering techniques such as subspace projection are promising candidates for RFI mitigation; however, for radio interferometric imaging arrays, these have primarily been used in engineering demonstration experiments rather than mainstream scientific observations. This paper considers one reason that adoption of such algorithms is limited: RFI decorrelates across the interferometric array because of long baseline lengths. This occurs when the relative RFI time delay along a baseline is large compared to the frequency channel inverse bandwidth used in the processing chain. Maximum achievable excision of the RFI is limited by covariance matrix estimation error when identifying interference subspace parameters, and decorrelation of the RFI introduces errors that corrupt the subspace estimate, rendering subspace projection ineffective over the entire array. In this work, we present an algorithm that overcomes this challenge of decorrelation by applying subspace projection via subarray processing (SP-SAP). Each subarray is designed to have a set of elements with high mutual correlation in the interferer for better estimation of subspace parameters. In an RFI simulation scenario for the proposed ngVLA interferometric imaging array with 15 kHz channel bandwidth for correlator processing, we show that compared to the former approach of applying subspace projection on the full array, SP-SAP improves mitigation of the RFI on the order of 9 dB. An example of improved image synthesis and reduced RFI artifacts for a simulated image “phantom” using the SP-SAP algorithm is presented.

  4. How I Became an Astronomer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maran, Stephen P.

    2001-01-01

    Life as an astronomer has taken me to view eclipses of the Sun from the Gaspe' Peninsula to the Pacific Ocean and the China and Coral Seas, and to observe the stars at observatories across the USA and as far south as Chile. I've also enjoyed working with NASA's telescopes in space, including the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Ultraviolet Explorer. It seems funny to reflect that it all began in the Sixth Grade by a fluke - the consequence of a hoax letter whose author I never identified.

  5. Explaining formation of Astronomical Jets using Dynamic Universe Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naga Parameswara Gupta, Satyavarapu

    2016-07-01

    Astronomical jets are observed from the centres of many Galaxies including our own Milkyway. The formation of such jet is explained using SITA simulations of Dynamic Universe Model. For this purpose the path traced by a test neutron is calculated and depicted using a set up of one densemass of the mass equivalent to mass of Galaxy center, 90 stars with similar masses of stars near Galaxy center, mass equivalents of 23 Globular Cluster groups, 16 Milkyway parts, Andromeda and Triangulum Galaxies at appropriate distances. Five different kinds of theoretical simulations gave positive results The path travelled by this test neutron was found to be an astronomical jet emerging from Galaxy center. This is another result from Dynamic Universe Model. It solves new problems like a. Variable Mass Rocket Trajectory Problem b. Explaining Very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) observations c. Astronomical jets observed from Milkyway Center d. Prediction of Blue shifted Galaxies e. Explaining Pioneer Anomaly f. Prediction of New Horizons satellite trajectory etc. Dynamic Universe Model never reduces to General relativity on any condition. It uses a different type of mathematics based on Newtonian physics. This mathematics used here is simple and straightforward. As there are no differential equations present in Dynamic Universe Model, the set of equations give single solution in x y z Cartesian coordinates for every point mass for every time step

  6. The SOAR Telescope Project Southern Observatory for Astronomical Research (SOAR)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2003-03-21

    completed SOAR dome and facility. 2. Dome The preliminary design of the dome was handled by M3 (US). A Brazilian firm, Equatorial Sistemas led the...for the Gemini Telescope during construction, now Project Manager at the National Solar Observatory • Robert Shelton, Provost of the University on

  7. The application of artificial intelligence to astronomical scheduling problems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, Mark D.

    1992-01-01

    Efficient utilization of expensive space- and ground-based observatories is an important goal for the astronomical community; the cost of modern observing facilities is enormous, and the available observing time is much less than the demand from astronomers around the world. The complexity and variety of scheduling constraints and goals has led several groups to investigate how artificial intelligence (AI) techniques might help solve these kinds of problems. The earliest and most successful of these projects was started at Space Telescope Science Institute in 1987 and has led to the development of the Spike scheduling system to support the scheduling of Hubble Space Telescope (HST). The aim of Spike at STScI is to allocate observations to timescales of days to a week observing all scheduling constraints and maximizing preferences that help ensure that observations are made at optimal times. Spike has been in use operationally for HST since shortly after the observatory was launched in Apr. 1990. Although developed specifically for HST scheduling, Spike was carefully designed to provide a general framework for similar (activity-based) scheduling problems. In particular, the tasks to be scheduled are defined in the system in general terms, and no assumptions about the scheduling timescale are built in. The mechanisms for describing, combining, and propagating temporal and other constraints and preferences are quite general. The success of this approach has been demonstrated by the application of Spike to the scheduling of other satellite observatories: changes to the system are required only in the specific constraints that apply, and not in the framework itself. In particular, the Spike framework is sufficiently flexible to handle both long-term and short-term scheduling, on timescales of years down to minutes or less. This talk will discuss recent progress made in scheduling search techniques, the lessons learned from early HST operations, the application of Spike

  8. The IAU Office of Astronomy Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mauduit, Jean-Christophe; Govender, K.

    2014-01-01

    The International Astronomical Union (IAU), the largest body of professional astronomers in the world, has set up the Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD) in partnership with the South African National Research Foundation (NRF). The OAD is located at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) in Cape Town. Its mission is to realise the IAU's Strategic Plan, which aims to use astronomy as a tool for development. It focuses on the following three main areas: "Universities and Research", "Children and Schools" and "Public Outreach". Eighteen projects worldwide have been funded for 2013 and are currently under way. More will be starting in 2014. The OAD is also setting up regional nodes and language expertise centres around the world. This presentation will describe the ongoing activities of the OAD and plans for the future.

  9. The Astronomer's Telegram: A Web-based Short-Notice Publication System for the Professional Astronomical Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rutledge, Robert E.

    1998-06-01

    The Astronomer's Telegram (ATEL) is a web-based short-notice (<4000 characters) publication system for reporting and commenting on new astronomical observations, offering for the first time in astronomy effectively instantaneous distribution of time-critical information for the entire professional community. It is designed to take advantage of the World Wide Web's simple user interface and the ability of computer programs to provide nearly all the necessary functions. This makes ATEL fast, efficient, and free. In practice, one may post a Telegram, which is instantly (<1 s) available at the web site and is distributed by e-mail within 24 hours through the Daily Email Digest, which is tailored to the subject selections of each reader. In addition, authors reporting new outbursts of transients or coordinates of new objects (for example, gamma-ray bursts or microlensing events) may request distribution by Instant Email Notices, which instantly (~minutes) distributes their new Telegram by e-mail to self-identified workers interested in the same topic. This speed in distribution is obtained because no editing or reviewing is performed after posting-the last person to review the text before distribution is the author. Telegrams are enumerated chronologically, permanently archived, and referenceable. While ATEL will be of particular use to observers of transient objects (such as gamma-ray bursts, microlenses, supernovae, novae, or X-ray transients) or in fields that are rapidly evolving observationally, there are no restrictions on subject matter.

  10. Measuring the speed of light using Jupiter's moons: a global citizen science project for International Year of Light 2015

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hendry, Martin A.; Hammond, Giles; Simmons, Mike

    2015-08-01

    2015 represents both the centenary of General Relativity and International Year of Light - the latter marking the 150th anniversary of James Clerk Maxwell's ground-breaking paper on "A dynamical theory of the electromagnetic field". These landmark dates provide an exciting opportunity to set up a global citizen science project that re-enacts the seminal 1675 experiment of Ole Romer: to measure the speed of light by observing the time eclipses of the satellites of Jupiter. This project - which has been set up by astronomers at the University of Glasgow, UK in partnership with Astronomers without Borders - is an ideal platform for engaging the amateur astronomy community, schools and the wider public across the globe. It requires only simple observations, with a small spotting scope or telescope, and can be carried out straightforwardly in both cities and dark-sky locations. It highlights a fascinating chapter in astronomical history, as well as the ongoing importance of accurate astrometry, orbital motion, the concept of longitude and knowing one's position on the Earth. In the context of the GR centenary, it also links strongly to the science behind GPS satellites and a range of important topics in the high school curriculum - from the electromagnetic spectrum to the more general principles of the scientific method.In this presentation we present an overview of our global citizen science project for IYL2015: its scope and motivation, the total number and global distribution of its participants to date and how astronomers around the world can get involved. We also describe the intended legacy of the project: a extensive database of observations that can provide future astronomy educators with an accessible and historically important context in which to explore key principles for analysing large astronomical datasets.

  11. Astronomical Resources: A Selected Halley's Comet Reading List.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fraknoi, Andrew

    1985-01-01

    Presents annotated lists of: (1) general introductory books about comets and Comet Halley; (2) books about comet history and lore; (3) introductory books for younger children; and (4) books for the serious amateur astronomer. A list of magazine and journal articles is included. (JN)

  12. Astronomical Resources. The Solar System: An Introductory Bibliography.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fraknoi, Andrew

    This reference surveys resources of astronomical information including books and articles about the solar system, Mercury, Venus, Earth, the Moon, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors. Also included is a list of seven available slide sets about the solar system. (CW)

  13. Improving the Determination of Eastern Elongations of Planetary Satellites in the Astronomical Almanac

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rura, Christopher; Stollberg, Mark

    2018-01-01

    The Astronomical Almanac is an annual publication of the US Naval Observatory (USNO) and contains a wide variety of astronomical data used by astronomers worldwide as a general reference or for planning observations. Included in this almanac are the times of greatest eastern and northern elongations of the natural satellites of the planets, accurate to 0.1 hour UT. The production code currently used to determine elongation times generates X and Y coordinates for each satellite (16 total) in 5 second intervals. This consequentially caused very large data files, and resulted in the program devoted to determining the elongation times to be computationally intensive. To make this program more efficient, we wrote a Python program to fit a cubic spline to data generated with a 6-minute time step. This resulted in elongation times that were found to agree with those determined from the 5 second data currently used in a large number of cases and was tested for 16 satellites between 2017 and 2019. The accuracy of this program is being tested for the years past 2019 and, if no problems are found, the code will be considered for production of this section of The Astronomical Almanac.

  14. Metal-Containing Molecules Beyond the Solar System: a Laboratory and Radio Astronomical Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ziurys, L. M.

    2010-06-01

    Although the history of interstellar molecules began around 1970, with the millimeter-wave detection of CO in the Orion Nebula, metal-containing species have been somewhat elusive for astronomical searches. Only in the past two decades have metal-bearing molecules been identified in space, starting with metal halides (NaCl, KCl, AlCl, and AlF), and then metal cyanide and isocyanide species (MgNC, MgCN, NaCN, and AlNC). Moreover, the metal-containing molecules seemed to be present in a single astronomical object: the envelope of a dying, carbon-rich star, IRC+10216. However, with improvements both in laboratory spectroscopy and telescope sensitivity, it is becoming clear that the relevance of metal-containing species in astrophysics is increasing. Metal oxide and hydroxide species, such as AlO and AlOH, have recently been identified in interstellar space. Metal-containing molecules are now being found in other astronomical sources, such as the oxygen-rich shell surrounding VY Canis Majoris, a supergiant star. These new astronomical discoveries will be presented, as well as the laboratory measurements that made them possible. New directions in rotational spectroscopy of metal-bearing molecules will also be discussed.

  15. Astronomers Discover Clue to Origin of Milky Way Gas Clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-05-01

    A surprising discovery that hydrogen gas clouds found in abundance in and above our Milky Way Galaxy have preferred locations has given astronomers a key clue about the origin of such clouds, which play an important part in galaxy evolution. We've concluded that these clouds are gas that has been blown away from the Galaxy's plane by supernova explosions and the fierce winds from young stars in areas of intense star formation," said H. Alyson Ford of the University of Michigan, whose Ph.D thesis research from Swinburne University formed the basis for this result. The team, consisting of Ford and collaborators Felix J. Lockman, of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), and Naomi Mclure-Griffiths of CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, presented their findings to the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Miami, Florida. The astronomers studied gas clouds in two distinct regions of the Galaxy. The clouds they studied are between 400 and 15,000 light-years outside the disk-like plane of the Galaxy. The disk contains most of the Galaxy's stars and gas, and is surrounded by a "halo" of gas more distant than the clouds the astronomers studied. "These clouds were first detected with the National Science Foundation's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope, and are quite puzzling. They are in a transitional area between the disk and the halo, and their origin has been uncertain," Lockman explained. The research team used data from the Galactic All-Sky Survey, made with CSIRO's Parkes radio telescope in Australia. When the astronomers compared the observations of the two regions, they saw that one region contained three times as many hydrogen clouds as the other. In addition, that region's clouds are, on average, twice as far above the Galaxy's plane. The dramatic difference, they believe, is because the region with more clouds lies near the tip of the Galaxy's central "bar," where the bar merges with a major spiral arm. This is an area of intense star formation

  16. Astronomers Gain Clues About Fundamental Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-12-01

    An international team of astronomers has looked at something very big -- a distant galaxy -- to study the behavior of things very small -- atoms and molecules -- to gain vital clues about the fundamental nature of our entire Universe. The team used the National Science Foundation's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) to test whether the laws of nature have changed over vast spans of cosmic time. The Green Bank Telescope The Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF (Click on image for GBT gallery) "The fundamental constants of physics are expected to remain fixed across space and time; that's why they're called constants! Now, however, new theoretical models for the basic structure of matter indicate that they may change. We're testing these predictions." said Nissim Kanekar, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), in Socorro, New Mexico. So far, the scientists' measurements show no change in the constants. "We've put the most stringent limits yet on some changes in these constants, but that's not the end of the story," said Christopher Carilli, another NRAO astronomer. "This is the exciting frontier where astronomy meets particle physics," Carilli explained. The research can help answer fundamental questions about whether the basic components of matter are tiny particles or tiny vibrating strings, how many dimensions the Universe has, and the nature of "dark energy." The astronomers were looking for changes in two quantities: the ratio of the masses of the electron and the proton, and a number physicists call the fine structure constant, a combination of the electron charge, the speed of light and the Planck constant. These values, considered fundamental physical constants, once were "taken as time independent, with values given once and forever" said German particle physicist Christof Wetterich. However, Wetterich explained, "the viewpoint of modern particle theory has changed in recent years," with ideas such as

  17. Project Physics Text 2, Motion in the Heavens.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA. Harvard Project Physics.

    Astronomical fundamentals are presented in this unit of the Project Physics text for use by senior high students. The geocentric system of Ptolemy is discussed in connection with Greek concepts including Aristarchus' heliocentric hypothesis. Analyses are made of Copernicus' reexamination, leading to Tycho's observations and compromise system. A…

  18. StarPals International Young Astronomers' Network Collaborative Projects for IYA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kingan, Jessi

    2008-09-01

    StarPals is a nascent non-profit organization with the goal of providing opportunities for international collaboration between students of all ages within space science research. We believe that by encouraging an interest in the cosmos, the one thing that is truly Universal, from a young age, students will not only further their knowledge of and interest in science but will learn valuable teamwork and life skills. The goal is to foster respect, understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity among all StarPals participants, whether students, teachers, or mentors. StarPals aims to inspire students by providing opportunities in which, more than simply visualizing themselves as research scientists, they can actually become one. The technologies of robotic telescopes, videoconferencing, and online classrooms are expanding the possibilities like never before. In honor of IYA2009, StarPals would like to encourage 400 schools to participate on a global scale in astronomy/cosmology research on various concurrent projects. We will offer in-person or online workshops and training sessions to teach the teachers. We will be seeking publication in scientific journals for some student research. For our current project, the Double Stars Challenge, students use the robotic telescopes to take a series of four images of one of 30 double stars from a list furnished by the US Naval Observatory and then use MPO Canopus software to take distance and position angle measurements. StarPals provides students with hands-on training, telescope time, and software to complete the imaging and measuring. A paper will be drafted from our research data and submitted to the Journal of Double Star Observations. The kids who participate in this project may potentially be the youngest contributors to an article in a vetted scientific journal. Kids rapidly adapt and improve their computer skills operating these telescopes and discover for themselves that science is COOL!

  19. A Mythological, Philosophical and Astronomical approach of our solar system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drivas, Sotirios; Kastanidou, Sofia

    2016-04-01

    Teaching Geography in the first Class of Gymnasium - secondary education we will focus in Solar System: Astronomical approach: Students will look and find the astronomical data of the planets, they will make comparisons between the sizes of their radius, they will find the distance from the Sun, they will search the relative motion, they will calculate the gravity on each planet, etc. Mythological approach: We will search the names and meanings of the planets based on Greek mythological origin. Philosophical approach: Regarding the philosophical approach of the "solar system" we will look and find: • Why planets are called so? • How did planets get their names? • What are the periods of Greek astronomy? • What were the astronomical instruments of ancient Greeks and who did built them? • What were the Greek philosophers and astronomers? When did they live and what did they discover? • Which method did Eratosthenes of Cyrene apply about 206B.C. to serve a real measurement of the earth's radius? • What was the relationship between science and religion in ancient Greece? Literature approach: At the end of the program students will write their opinion in subject "Having a friend from another planet" based on the book of Antoine de Saint - Exupéry "The little prince". Law approach: A jurist working in Secondary Education will visits our school and engages students in the Space Law. Artistic approach: Students will create their own posters of our planetary system. The best posters will be posted on the school bulletin board to display their work. Visit: Students and teachers will visit the Observatory of Larissa where they will see how observatory works and talk with scientists about their job. They will look through telescopes and observe the sun.

  20. Astronomical Polarimetry with the RIT Polarization Imaging Camera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vorobiev, Dmitry V.; Ninkov, Zoran; Brock, Neal

    2018-06-01

    In the last decade, imaging polarimeters based on micropolarizer arrays have been developed for use in terrestrial remote sensing and metrology applications. Micropolarizer-based sensors are dramatically smaller and more mechanically robust than other polarimeters with similar spectral response and snapshot capability. To determine the suitability of these new polarimeters for astronomical applications, we developed the RIT Polarization Imaging Camera to investigate the performance of these devices, with a special attention to the low signal-to-noise regime. We characterized the device performance in the lab, by determining the relative throughput, efficiency, and orientation of every pixel, as a function of wavelength. Using the resulting pixel response model, we developed demodulation procedures for aperture photometry and imaging polarimetry observing modes. We found that, using the current calibration, RITPIC is capable of detecting polarization signals as small as ∼0.3%. The relative ease of data collection, calibration, and analysis provided by these sensors suggest than they may become an important tool for a number of astronomical targets.

  1. Visualization of Multi-mission Astronomical Data with ESASky

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baines, Deborah; Giordano, Fabrizio; Racero, Elena; Salgado, Jesús; López Martí, Belén; Merín, Bruno; Sarmiento, María-Henar; Gutiérrez, Raúl; Ortiz de Landaluce, Iñaki; León, Ignacio; de Teodoro, Pilar; González, Juan; Nieto, Sara; Segovia, Juan Carlos; Pollock, Andy; Rosa, Michael; Arviset, Christophe; Lennon, Daniel; O'Mullane, William; de Marchi, Guido

    2017-02-01

    ESASky is a science-driven discovery portal to explore the multi-wavelength sky and visualize and access multiple astronomical archive holdings. The tool is a web application that requires no prior knowledge of any of the missions involved and gives users world-wide simplified access to the highest-level science data products from multiple astronomical space-based astronomy missions plus a number of ESA source catalogs. The first public release of ESASky features interfaces for the visualization of the sky in multiple wavelengths, the visualization of query results summaries, and the visualization of observations and catalog sources for single and multiple targets. This paper describes these features within ESASky, developed to address use cases from the scientific community. The decisions regarding the visualization of large amounts of data and the technologies used were made to maximize the responsiveness of the application and to keep the tool as useful and intuitive as possible.

  2. Science operations management. [with Infrared Astronomy Satellite project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Squibb, G. F.

    1984-01-01

    The operation teams engaged in the IR Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) project included scientists from the IRAS International Science Team. The detailed involvement of these scientists in the design, testing, validation, and operations phases of the IRAS mission contributed to the success of this project. The Project Management Group spent a substantial amount of time discussing science-related issues, because science team coleaders were members from the outset. A single scientific point-of-contact for the Management Group enhanced the depth and continuity of agreement reached in decision-making.

  3. The Astronomy Collections: From the Project to the Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bobis, L.

    2015-04-01

    Within some astronomical libraries, just as it is with other libraries, there are collections we might refer to as being in "the border zone." The materials most representative of this are those that relate to an institution's heritage and history. The challenges of these patrimonial collections are scientific, legal, economic, and political. These collections establish the scientific status of their respective libraries because they extend beyond meeting the needs of astronomers: the material is important in defining the history of the field. The influence of these libraries derives from these heritage materials. From this point of view, the library is a worksite and a laboratory for librarians, project managers, and researchers.

  4. ASTROPHYSICS: Astronomers Spot Their First Carbon Bomb.

    PubMed

    Irion, R

    2000-11-17

    Carbon on the surface of an ultradense star detonated in a 3-hour thermonuclear explosion, according to a report at a meeting here last week of the American Astronomical Society's High Energy Astrophysics Division. If confirmed, the burst would be the first known cosmic explosion fueled solely by carbon rather than hydrogen or helium and could verify or revise models of carbon combustion.

  5. Current and Future Capabilities of the 74-inch Telescope of Kottamia Astronomical Observatory in Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azzam, Y. A.; Ali, G. B.; Ismail, H. A.; Haroon, A.; Selim, I.

    In this paper, we are going to introduce the Kottamia Astronomical Observatory, KAO, to the astronomical community. The current status of the telescope together with the available instrumentations is described. An upgrade stage including a new optical system and a computer controlling of both the telescope and dome are achieved. The specifications of a set of CCD cameras for direct imaging and spectroscopy are given. A grating spectrograph is recently gifted to KAO from Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, OAO, of the National Astronomical Observatories in Japan. This spectrograph is successfully tested and installed at the F/18 Cassegrain focus of the KAO 74" telescope.

  6. Largest College Endowments, 2011

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chronicle of Higher Education, 2012

    2012-01-01

    Of all endowments valued at more than $250-million, the UCLA Foundation had the highest rate of growth over the previous year, at 49 percent. This article presents a table of the largest college endowments in 2011. The table covers the "rank," "institution," "market value as of June 30, 2011," and "1-year change" of institutions participating in…

  7. Catalogue of Coordinates and B-Magnitudes in -20° - +2° Zone Based on the Ulugh Beg Astronomical Institute Part of the Fon Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuldoshev, Q. X.; Muminov, M. M.; Ehgamberdiev, Sh. A.; Relke, H.; Protsyuk, Yu. I.; Kovylianska, O. E.; Protsyuk, S. V.; Andruk, V. M.

    Catalogue of 13.4 million stars down to 17.5m was obtained in 2017 by using plates from the Kitab Observatory of Ulugh Beg Astronomical Institute (UBAI) of the Uzbek Academy of Sciences. Kitab's part of Photographic Sky Survey (Russian abbreviation is FON, in next contexts) project include more than 2600 photographic plates, exposed on the Double Astrograph of Zeiss (DAZ, D/F = 40/300, 69"/mm) from 1981 to 1996. Digitization of these plates was made by using Epson Expression 10000XL scanner with the 1200 dpi resolution. Catalogue includes objects from the 1963 plates in declination zone between -20° and +2° for middle epoch 1984.97. The equatorial coordinates of objects were determined in the Tycho-2 reference system and the B-magnitudes in the system of the photoelectric standards. Five participants from Uzbekistan, Germany and Ukraine have taken part in the processing of the digitized images. The average internal accuracy of the catalogue for one observation are 0.23″ and 0.15m for the equatorial coordinates and B-magnitudes respectively. For the stars brighter than 14m the errors are 0.09″ and 0.05m respectively. The analysis of the catalogue and its comparison with the several astrometric catalogues was done.

  8. Available Tools and Challenges Classifying Cutting-Edge and Historical Astronomical Documents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lagerstrom, Jill

    2015-08-01

    The STScI Library assists the Science Policies Division in evaluating and choosing scientific keywords and categories for proposals for the Hubble Space Telescope mission and the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope mission. In addition we are often faced with the question “what is the shape of the astronomical literature?” However, subject classification in astronomy in recent times has not been cultivated. This talk will address the available tools and challenges of classifying cutting-edge as well as historical astronomical documents. In at the process, we will give an overview of current and upcoming practices of subject classification in astronomy.

  9. The accelerations of the earth and moon from early astronomical observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Muller, P. M.; Stephenson, F. R.

    1975-01-01

    An investigation has compiled a very large amount of data on central or near central solar eclipses as recorded in four principal ancient sources (Greek and Roman classics, medieval European chronicles, Chinese annals and astronomical treatises, and Late Babylonian astronomical texts) and applied careful data selectivity criteria and statistical methods to obtain reliable dates, magnitudes, and places of observation of the events, and thereby made estimates of the earth acceleration and lunar acceleration. The basic conclusion is that the lunar acceleration and both tidal and nontidal earth accelerations have been essentially constant during the period from 1375 B.C. to the present.

  10. La contribution des astronomes aux mesures de précision.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Debarbat, S.

    The system for astronomical constants includes the astronomical unit, the velocity of light and the light-time for the unit distance in the metric system. In France, at least from the 17th century, scientists had in mind to unify the units. But it is not before the time of the French Revolution that it was succeeded to adopt a unified system based on the metre. Measurements were made of an arc of meridian, from Dunkirk to Barcelona to determine the new unit as the fraction of 1 over 107 of a quarter of any part of the Earth from the north pole to the equator. On the occasion of the bicentenary of the nomenclature of the metric system (1795), the Paris Observatory has presented during more than six months in 1995, mostly for students, manuscripts, documents related to the subject, in its galeries on the first floor of the Perrault building. The exhibition ended with the 1960 and 1983 definitions of the meter to which the Paris Observatory has contributed. For astronomers it was recalled the reason for which the Angström had to be considered as not more usable, being only close to the fraction 1/1010 of the meter.

  11. Scientific Astronomical School by Professor Volodymyr P. Tsesevich on the Physics of Variable Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vavilova, I. B.

    This paper is dedicated to the Prof. Volodymyr Platonovych Tsesevich (1907-1983), an outstanding scientist and legendary personality of the XX century. We describe briefly the Kyiv period of his life and activity taken from his Personal Dossier from the Archive of the Presidium of the NAS of Ukraine. A particular attention is paid to the role by V.P. Tsesevich in the development of astrophysical research at the Main Astronomical Observatory of the Academy of Sciences of UkrSSR, when he served as the Director (19.11.1948-03.05.1951), and to the fruitful cooperation between Kyiv and Odesa astronomers. We present briefly a "tree" of the scientific astronomical school by Prof. V.P. Tsesevich on the physics of stars. The data were obtained from different archives (Astronomical Observatory of the I.I. Mechnikov National University of Odesa, Main Astronomical Observatory of the NAS of Ukraine, Archive of the Vernadsky National Library, Archive of the Russian AS, and other institutions). The full database contains of a brief information on the about 100 representatives of this school as follows: name, title and year of thesis's defense, past/present affiliation). The scientific school is formed since 1950-ies till now having its greatest continuation in the work of such astronomers as N.S.Komarov, V.G.Karetnikov, Yu.S. Romanov, and I.L.Andronov (a branch of this school after V.P. Tsesevich), as well as S.M.Andrievsky as the follower by V.G. Karetnikov and T.V. Mishenina, V.F. Gopka, V.V. Kovtykh as the followers by N.S. Komarov. The given information on the school by V.P. Tsesevich is not absolutely full, for example, 1) there are no the data on thesis's defense under his supervision before 1948; 2) information on the astronomical school developed by A.M. Stafeev and some other scientists is a very poor; 3) some inaccuracies may be present. We will grateful for all the additions and corrections to update a tree of this scientific school, which played and plays a prominent

  12. What will the future of cloud-based astronomical data processing look like?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Green, Andrew W.; Mannering, Elizabeth; Harischandra, Lloyd; Vuong, Minh; O'Toole, Simon; Sealey, Katrina; Hopkins, Andrew M.

    2017-06-01

    Astronomy is rapidly approaching an impasse: very large datasets require remote or cloud-based parallel processing, yet many astronomers still try to download the data and develop serial code locally. Astronomers understand the need for change, but the hurdles remain high. We are developing a data archive designed from the ground up to simplify and encourage cloud-based parallel processing. While the volume of data we host remains modest by some standards, it is still large enough that download and processing times are measured in days and even weeks. We plan to implement a python based, notebook-like interface that automatically parallelises execution. Our goal is to provide an interface sufficiently familiar and user-friendly that it encourages the astronomer to run their analysis on our system in the cloud-astroinformatics as a service. We describe how our system addresses the approaching impasse in astronomy using the SAMI Galaxy Survey as an example.

  13. Light Emitting Diodes and Astronomical Environments: Results from in situ Field Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craine, Brian L.; Craine, Eric R.

    2015-05-01

    Light emitting diode (LED) light fixtures are rapidly becoming industry standards for outdoor lighting. They are promoted on the strength of long lifetimes (hence economic efficiencies), low power requirements, directability, active brightness controls, and energy efficiency. They also tend to produce spectral shifts that are undesirable in astronomical settings, but which can be moderated by filters. LED lighting for continuous roadway and parking lot lighting is particularly popular, and many communities are in the process of retrofitting Low Pressure Sodium (LPS) and other lights by tens of thousands of new LED fixtures at a time. What is the impact of this process on astronomical observatories and on dark skies upon which amateur astronomers rely? We bypass modeling and predictions to make actual measurements of these lights in the field. We report on original ground, airborne, and satellite observations of LED lights and discuss their light budgets, zenith angle functions, and impacts on observatory environs.

  14. Toyz: A framework for scientific analysis of large datasets and astronomical images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moolekamp, F.; Mamajek, E.

    2015-11-01

    As the size of images and data products derived from astronomical data continues to increase, new tools are needed to visualize and interact with that data in a meaningful way. Motivated by our own astronomical images taken with the Dark Energy Camera (DECam) we present Toyz, an open source Python package for viewing and analyzing images and data stored on a remote server or cluster. Users connect to the Toyz web application via a web browser, making it ​a convenient tool for students to visualize and interact with astronomical data without having to install any software on their local machines. In addition it provides researchers with an easy-to-use tool that allows them to browse the files on a server and quickly view very large images (>2 Gb) taken with DECam and other cameras with a large FOV and create their own visualization tools that can be added on as extensions to the default Toyz framework.

  15. BOOK REVIEW: Treasure-Hunting in Astronomical Plate Archives.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kroll, Peter; La Dous, Constanze; Brauer, Hans-Juergen; Sterken, C.

    This book consists of the proceedings of a conference on the exploration of the invaluable scientific treasure present in astronomical plate archives worldwide. The book incorporates fifty scientific papers covering almost 250 pages. There are several most useful papers, such as, for example, an introduction to the world's large plate archives that serves the purpose of a guide for the beginning user of plate archives. It includes a very useful list of twelve mayor archives with many details on their advantages (completeness, number of plates, classification system and homogeneity of time coverage) and their limitations (plate quality, access, electronic catalogues, photographic services, limiting magnitudes, search software and cost to the user). Other topics cover available contemporary digitization machines, the applications of commercial flatbed scanners, technical aspects of plate consulting, astrophysical applications and astrometric uses, data reduction, data archiving and retrieval, and strategies to find astrophysically useful information on plates. The astrophysical coverage is very broad: from solar-system bodies to variable stars, sky surveys and sky patrols covering the galactic and extragalactic domain and even gravitational lensing. The book concludes by an illuminating paper on ALADIN, the reference tool for identification of astronomical sources. This work can be considered as a kind of field guide, and is recommended reading for anyone who wishes to undertake small- or large-scale consulting of photographic plate material. A shortcoming of the proceedings is the fact that very few papers have abstracts. BOOK REVIEW: Treasure-Hunting in Astronomical Plate Archives. Proceedings of the international workshop held at Sonneberg Observatory, March 4-6, 1999. Peter Kroll, Constanze la Dous and Hans-Juergen Brauer (Eds.)

  16. The Networks Of The Astronomical Society Of The Pacific And The International Year Of Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fraknoi, Andrew; Manning, J.; Gurton, S.; Gibbs, M.; Hurst, A.; White, V.; Berendsen, M.

    2007-12-01

    Serious planning has begun for the International Year of Astronomy (IYA) in 2009, which will also be the 120th anniversary of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP). A key element required for IYA's success in reaching the maximum number of people in the U.S. will be to find effective ways of disseminating the programs and materials that are being developed. The ASP's national networks of educational intermediaries can play a major role in training, dissemination, and organization for IYA. These networks include: the Project ASTRO National Site Network (13 regional sites training professional and amateur astronomers to work with local teachers and families), the Night Sky Network (over 200 amateur astronomy clubs engaged in active outreach), the Astronomy from the Ground Up Network (smaller science and nature centers increasing their offerings in astronomy), and the Cosmos in the Classroom Network (hundreds of instructors of introductory astronomy in community, state, and liberal arts colleges). The ASP also offers "The Universe in the Classroom", a quarterly newsletter for those teaching astronomy in grades 3-12, an extensive web site of educational resources, podcasts, workshops, national conferences, and awards to help improve the public understanding of astronomy. At the Summer 2008 AAS meeting, the ASP will sponsor a major symposium and workshops on preparing for IYA (and working with a range of different audiences.)

  17. New Astronomical Reduction of Old Observations (the NAROO project)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arlot, Jean-Eudes; Robert, Vincent; Lainey, Valery; Neiner, Coralie; Thouvenin, Nicolas

    2018-04-01

    The Gaia astrometric reference catalogue will provide star proper motions with an accuracy of one mas one century ago for stars of magnitude 14 or brighter. Our project is to re-reduced the old observations with the new catalogue allowing to have an astrometric accuracy only limited by the observational biases and not by reference stars. Then, we plan to get an accuracy of 50 mas where the old reductions were not better than 500 mas! For our purpose, we will digitize old photographic plates with a sub-micrometric scanner. Tests were made using the UCAC catalogue showing that old photographic plates have an intrinsect accuracy of 30 to 60 mas.

  18. Source detection in astronomical images by Bayesian model comparison

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frean, Marcus; Friedlander, Anna; Johnston-Hollitt, Melanie; Hollitt, Christopher

    2014-12-01

    The next generation of radio telescopes will generate exabytes of data on hundreds of millions of objects, making automated methods for the detection of astronomical objects ("sources") essential. Of particular importance are faint, diffuse objects embedded in noise. There is a pressing need for source finding software that identifies these sources, involves little manual tuning, yet is tractable to calculate. We first give a novel image discretisation method that incorporates uncertainty about how an image should be discretised. We then propose a hierarchical prior for astronomical images, which leads to a Bayes factor indicating how well a given region conforms to a model of source that is exceptionally unconstrained, compared to a model of background. This enables the efficient localisation of regions that are "suspiciously different" from the background distribution, so our method looks not for brightness but for anomalous distributions of intensity, which is much more general. The model of background can be iteratively improved by removing the influence on it of sources as they are discovered. The approach is evaluated by identifying sources in real and simulated data, and performs well on these measures: the Bayes factor is maximized at most real objects, while returning only a moderate number of false positives. In comparison to a catalogue constructed by widely-used source detection software with manual post-processing by an astronomer, our method found a number of dim sources that were missing from the "ground truth" catalogue.

  19. NIXNOX project: Sites in Spain where citizens can enjoy dark starry skies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zamorano, J.; de Miguel, A. Sánchez; Alfaro, E.; Martínez-Delgado, D.; Ocaña, F.; Castaño, J. Gómez; Nievas, M.

    2015-03-01

    The NIXNOX project, sponsored by the Spanish Astronomical Society, is a Pro-Am collaboration with the aim of finding sites with dark skies. All sky data of the night sky brightness is being obtained by amateur astronomers with Sky Quality Meter (SQM) photometers. We are not looking for remote locations because the places should be easily accessible by people with children. Our goal is to motivate citizens to observe the night sky. NIXNOX will provide information to answer the question: where can I go to observe the stars with my family?

  20. The "Sky on Earth" Project: A Synergy between Formal and Informal Astronomy Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rossi, Sabrina; Giordano, Enrica; Lanciano, Nicoletta

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we present the "Sky on Earth" project funded in 2008 by the Italian Ministry of Instruction, Research and University, inside its annual public outreach education program. The project's goal was to realise a stable and open-access astronomical garden, where children, teachers and citizens could be engaged in investigations…

  1. Astronomical large Ge immersion grating by Canon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sukegawa, Takashi; Suzuki, Takeshi; Kitamura, Tsuyoshi

    2016-07-01

    Immersion grating is a powerful optical device for thee infrared high-resolution spectroscope. Germanium (GGe) is the best material for a mid-infrared immersion grating because of Ge has very large reflective index (n=4.0). On the other hands, there is no practical Ge immersion grating under 5umm use. It was very difficult for a fragile IR crystal to manufacture a diffraction grating precisely. Our original free-forming machine has accuracy of a few nano-meter in positioning and stability. We already fabricated the large CdZnTe immersion grating. (Sukegawa et al. (2012), Ikeda et al. (2015)) Wee are developing Ge immersion grating that can be a good solution for high-resolution infrared spectroscopy with the large ground-based/space telescopes. We succeeded practical Ge immersion grating with the grooved area off 75mm (ruled direction) x 119mm (grove width) and the blaze angle of 75 degrees. Our astronomical large Ge immersion grating has the grooved area of 155mm (ruled direction) x 41mmm (groove width) and groove pitch off 91.74um. We also report optical performance of astronomical large Ge immersion grating with a metal coating on the diffraction surface.

  2. Astronomical Alignments in a Neolithic Chinese Site?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, S.; Stencel, R. E.

    1997-12-01

    In the Manchurian province of Liaoning, near 41N19' and 119E30', exist ruins of a middle Neolithic society (2500 to 4000 BC) known as the Hongshan culture. This location, called Niuheliang, is comprised of 16 locations with monumental structures scattered over 80 square kilometers of hills. Most are stone burial structures that contain jade artifacts implying wealth and power. One structure is unique in being unusually shaped and containing oversized effigies of goddess figures. This structure also has a commanding view of the surrounding landscape. The presence of decorated pottery, jade and worked copper suggests the Hongshan people were sophisticated artisans and engaged in long-distance trading. During 1997, we've conducted a course at Denver as part of our Core Curriculum program for upper division students, that has examined the astronomical and cultural aspects of the Niuheliang site, to attempt to determine whether these contemporaries of the builders of Stonehenge may have included astronomical alignments into their constructions. The preliminary result of our studies suggests that certain monuments have potential for lunar standstill observation from the "goddess temple". For updates on these results, please see our website: www.du.edu/ rstencel/core2103.html.

  3. Integrating the IA2 Astronomical Archive in the VO: The VO-Dance Engine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molinaro, M.; Laurino, O.; Smareglia, R.

    2012-09-01

    Virtual Observatory (VO) protocols and standards are getting mature and the astronomical community asks for astrophysical data to be easily reachable. This means data centers have to intensify their efforts to provide the data they manage not only through proprietary portals and services but also through interoperable resources developed on the basis of the IVOA (International Virtual Observatory Alliance) recommendations. Here we present the work and ideas developed at the IA2 (Italian Astronomical Archive) data center hosted by the INAF-OATs (Italian Institute for Astrophysics - Trieste Astronomical Observatory) to reach this goal. The core point is the development of an application that from existing DB and archive structures can translate their content to VO compliant resources: VO-Dance (written in Java). This application, in turn, relies on a database (potentially DBMS independent) to store the translation layer information of each resource and auxiliary content (UCDs, field names, authorizations, policies, etc.). The last token is an administrative interface (currently developed using the Django python framework) to allow the data center administrators to set up and maintain resources. This deployment, platform independent, with database and administrative interface highly customizable, means the package, when stable and easily distributable, can be also used by single astronomers or groups to set up their own resources from their public datasets.

  4. Observing the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse from the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirwan, Sean Matthew; Cline, J. Donald; Krochmal, Mark; Donald Cline, Mark Krochmal

    2017-01-01

    The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) is located directly under the path of totality of next year’s solar eclipse and possesses two 26m radio telescopes capable of interferometry at simultaneously at 2.3 GHz and 8.4 GHZ. PARI is preparing these radio telescopes for use by the astronomical community to observe solar eclipse. We will present the status of PARI’s radio telescopes and information on access for the eclipse. We will also present the status and availability of several optical telescopes.

  5. Training Young Astronomers in EPO: An Update on the AAS Astronomy Ambassadors Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fraknoi, A.; Fienberg, R. T.; Gurton, S.; Schmitt, A. H.; Schatz, D.; Prather, E. E.

    2014-07-01

    The American Astronomical Society, with organizations active in EPO, has launched professional-development workshops and a community of practice to help improve early-career astronomers' ability to communicate effectively. Called “Astronomy Ambassadors,” the program provides mentoring and training for participants, from advanced undergraduates to beginning faculty. By learning to implement effective EPO strategies, Ambassadors become better teachers, meeting presenters, and representatives of our science to the public and government. Because young astronomers are a more diverse group than those who now do most outreach, they help the astronomy community present a more multicultural and gender-balanced face to the public, enabling underserved groups to see themselves as scientists. Ambassadors are given a library of outreach activities and materials, including many developed by cooperating organizations such as the ASP, plus some that have been created by Andrew Fraknoi specifically for this program.

  6. Post-project geomorphic assessment of a large process-based river restoration project

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Erwin, Susannah O.; Schmidt, John C.; Allred, Tyler M.

    2016-01-01

    This study describes channel changes following completion of the Provo River Restoration Project (PRRP), the largest stream restoration project in Utah and one of the largest projects in the United States in which a gravel-bed river was fully reconstructed. We summarize project objectives and the design process, and we analyze monitoring data collected during the first 7 years after project completion. Post-project channel adjustment during the study period included two phases: (i) an initial phase of rapid, but small-scale, adjustment during the first years after stream flow was introduced to the newly constructed channel and (ii) a subsequent period of more gradual topographic adjustment and channel migration. Analysis of aerial imagery and ground-survey data demonstrate that the channel has been more dynamic in the downstream 4 km where a local source contributes a significant annual supply of bed material. Here, the channel migrates and exhibits channel adjustments that are more consistent with project objectives. The upstream 12 km of the PRRP are sediment starved, the channel has been laterally stable, and this condition may not be consistent with large-scale project objectives.

  7. The Role of Perspective Taking in How Children Connect Reference Frames When Explaining Astronomical Phenomena

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plummer, Julia D.; Bower, Corinne A.; Liben, Lynn S.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates the role of perspective-taking skills in how children explain spatially complex astronomical phenomena. Explaining many astronomical phenomena, especially those studied in elementary and middle school, requires shifting between an Earth-based description of the phenomena and a space-based reference frame. We studied 7- to…

  8. Using Astronomical Photographs to Investigate Misconceptions about Galaxies and Spectra: Question Development for Clicker Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Hyunju; Schneider, Stephen E.

    2015-01-01

    Many topics in introductory astronomy at the college or high-school level rely implicitly on using astronomical photographs and visual data in class. However, students bring many preconceptions to their understanding of these materials that ultimately lead to misconceptions, and the research about students' interpretation of astronomical images…

  9. Using Astronomical Photographs to Investigate Misconceptions about Galaxies and Spectra: Question Development for Clicker Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Hyunju; Schneider, Stephen E.

    2015-01-01

    Many topics in introductory astronomy at the college or high-school level rely implicitly on using astronomical photographs and visual data in class. However, students bring many preconceptions to their understanding of these materials that ultimately lead to misconceptions, and research about students' interpretation of astronomical images has…

  10. Astronomical Activities for students-Motivating students interest in Physical Science through Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matthaiou, Alexis

    2010-05-01

    Astronomical Activities for students Motivating students interest in Physical Science through Astronomy Alexis Matthaiou Philekpaideftiki Etaireia, Arsakeio Lyceum Patron, Patras, Greece,(alexiosmat@yahoo.gr) School education aims not only to providing the necessary knowledge to the students but also to inspire and motivate them to realize their special abilities and inclinations and use their potential for making a joyful future for their lives. In this direction we present some activities held in the Arsakeio School of Patras during the years 2005-2008 in the field of Astronomy and Astrophysics, in order to share our experience with the teachers' community. Students from all grades of primary and secondary education participated with enthusiasm. In particular, they observed the Partial Solar Eclipse of October 3rd, 2005,and the Total Solar Eclipse of March 29th, 2006. They took part in observing and registering Solar Spots, using Astronomical equipments like different types of telescopes with filters and solar scopes. Students studied further the nature of Solar Phenomena and their effects on life, participating in the Environmental Program "Sun and Life"(2006-2007). Moreover, students took part in the International Program for measuring the Light Pollution "Globe at Night" (2006-2007) with observing and registering the luminosity of the Orion constellation in the night sky above their residence. Finally, the students participated in the European program "Hands on Universe" (HOU) (2005-2008) working on a project, which was the Greek contribution to HOU, developed from "Philekpaideftiki Etaireia". In particular, they studied the stars' spectrum and acquired information about the stars' life and age of stellar systems, using interactive multimedia technology.

  11. Commission 5: Documentation and Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, Raymond P.; Ohishi, Masatoshi; Genova, Françoise; Grothkopf, Uta; Malkov, Oleg Yu.; Pence, William D.; Schmitz, Marion; Hanisch, Robert J.; Zhou, Xu

    IAU Commission 5 deals with data management issues, and its working groups and task groups deal specifically with information handling, with data centres and networks, with technical aspects of collection, archiving, storage and dissemination of data, with designations and classification of astronomical objects, with library services, editorial policies, computer communications, ad hoc methodologies, and with various standards, reference frames, etc., FITS, astronomys Flexible Image Transport System, the major data exchange format, is controlled, maintained and updated by the Working Group FITS.

  12. Possible Astronomical Depictions in Franco-Cantabrian Paleolithic Rock Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rappenglück, Michael A.

    In some cases there is evidence for astronomical depictions among the rock art of the Franco-Cantabrian Upper Paleolithic (40-12 ka BP). Phenological almanacs, some kind of lunar time reckoning, certain asterisms, and manifestations of cosmovisions are probably present.

  13. The Astronomical Instrument, So-Gahui Invented During King Sejong Period

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Yong-Sam Lee; Kim, Sang-Hyuk

    2002-09-01

    So-ganui, namely small simplified armillary sphere, was invented as an astronomical instrument by Lee Cheon, Jeong Cho, Jung In-Ji under 16 years' rule of King Sejong. We collect records and observed data on So-ganui. It is designed to measure position of celestial sphere and to determine time. It also can be transformed equatorial to horizontal, and horizontal to equatorial coordinate. It can measure the right ascension, declination, altitude and azimuth. It is composed of Sayu-hwan (Four displacements), Jeokdo-hwan (Equatorial dial), Baekgak-hwan (Ring with one hundred-interval quarters), Gyuhyeong (Sighting aliadade), Yongju (Dragon-pillar) and Bu (Stand). So-ganui was used conveniently portable surveying as well as astronomical instrument and possible to determine time during day and night.

  14. Stereoscopy in Astronomical Visualizations to Support Learning at Informal Education Settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, Aaron; Lee, Hee-Sun

    2015-08-01

    Stereoscopy has been used in science education for 100 years. Recent innovations in low cost technology as well as trends in the entertainment industry have made stereoscopy popular among educators and audiences alike. However, experimental studies addressing whether stereoscopy actually impacts science learning are limited. Over the last decade, we have conducted a series of quasi-experimental and experimental studies on how children and adult visitors in science museums and planetariums learned about the structure and function of highly spatial scientific objects such as galaxies, supernova, etc. We present a synthesis of the results from these studies and implications for stereoscopic visualization development. The overall finding is that the impact of stereoscopy on perceptions of scientific objects is limited when presented as static imagery. However, when presented as full motion films, a significantly positive impact was detected. To conclude, we present a set of stereoscopic design principles that can help design astronomical stereoscopic films that support deep and effective learning. Our studies cover astronomical content such as the engineering of and imagery from the Mars rovers, artistic stereoscopic imagery of nebulae and a high-resolution stereoscopic film about how astronomers measure and model the structure of our galaxy.

  15. Leslie Peltier, Amateur Astronomer and Observer Extraordinaire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corbin, B. G.

    2003-12-01

    Leslie Copus Peltier, (Jan. 2, 1900-May 10, 1980) was called "the world's greatest non-professional astronomer" by none other than Harlow Shapley, and also referred to as the "the world's greatest living amateur astronomer". He began observing variable stars on March 1, 1918 with an observation of R. Leonis and at the time of his death had made a total of 132,123 observations of variable stars. These were reported to the AAVSO on a consecutive monthly basis stretching from 1918 to his death in 1980. As of October 2003, he was still on AAVSO's list of the top 25 observers in its history. Born on a farm near Delphos, Ohio, his parents were well read and their home was filled with books on different subjects, including nature guides. As a young man he studied the flora and fauna of the area and in 1915 began his study of the heavens with Vega being the first star he identified. After the purchase of a 2-inch spyglass, his observations of variable stars began to be noticed by professional astronomers and the AAVSO loaned him a 4-inch Mogey refractor; shortly thereafter Henry Norris Russell of Princeton loaned him via the AAVSO a 6-inch refractor, a comet seeker of short focus. He discovered 12 comets, 10 of which carry his name, and 6 novae or recurring novae. His design of the "Merry-Go-Round Observatory" was a novel approach with the whole observatory revolving around the observer while seated in his observing chair. Miami University (Ohio) later donated to him their 12-inch Clark refractor with its dome. His first book, Starlight Nights: The Adventures of a Star-Gazer, appeared in 1965. This autobiography, an ode to the joys of observing both the night sky and nature, was written in beautifully descriptive language that helped lead countless readers into astronomy. Departing from astronomy, in 1977 he published The Place on Jennings Creek. Written in the style of the 19th century naturalist, the book was devoted to his family's home, Brookhaven, and its natural

  16. This Month in Astronomical History: Providing Context for the Advancement of Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Teresa

    2018-01-01

    This Month in Astronomical History is a short (~500 word) illustrated column hosted on the AAS website (https://had.aas.org/resources/astro-history). Its mission is to highlight people and events that have shaped the development of astronomy to convey a historical context to current researchers, to provide a resource for education and public outreach programs seeking to incorporate a historical perspective, and to share the excitement of astronomy with the public. Knowing how the astronomical journey has proceeded thus far allows current professionals to map where to go next and how to get there. The column charts the first part of this journey by celebrating anniversaries of births, discoveries, and deaths, and the technological advances that made discoveries possible. A new “Further Reading” section encourages readers to pursue subjects in greater depth and strengthens the articles as classroom resources.In the months preceding the 21 August 2017 solar eclipse, the column featured astronomical bodies that come between Earth and the Sun: 2004 Venus transit, the 1878 solar eclipse, and the search for the hypothetical planet Vulcan. Venusian transits were an early but technically challenging way to measure the astronomical unit, now easily done with radar-ranging. Like this year’s event, eclipse chasing and citizen science were part of the 1878 experience. Newton’s Laws seemed to require a planet inside Mercury’s orbit, but General Relativity explained the behavior of Mercury without it. Studying each of these transiting bodies has expanded our knowledge and understanding of the universe differently. Transiting extrasolar planets remain to be explored in a future column. In September, an article on the discovery of Neptune followed the discussion of the non-existent Vulcan quite naturally and expanded on the brief mention of this event in relation to the discovery of Pluto. Suggestions for additional topics are always welcome.The Dudley Observatory

  17. First Visiting Astronomers at VLT KUEYEN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-04-01

    -alpha line well visible in the red region of its spectrum ( Photo 10b/00 ). The quasar is therefore located at a large distance that corresponds to when the universe was quite young, about 10% of its current age. The measured redshift was only slightly higher than what was predicted by the observers ( z = 3.6) on the basis of earlier multi-colour photometric measurements from VLT/ANTU [2]. The magnitude of this quasar is 24.5, i.e., 25 million times fainter than the faintest star that can be seen with the naked eye at a dark site. As the observers remark, this quasar, at the measured magnitude and redshift, is an intrinsically fainter member of its class. A good start Another dozen objects also showed spectral features that will allow the Toulouse team to determine their distances, once their data have been properly analysed. The detection of these spectral features in such distant and faint objects is a powerful demonstration of the extraordinary sensitivity of the KUEYEN/FORS2 constellation. It is also a fine result from the very first observing night with this new facility and an good illustration of the effective use of space- and ground-based telescopes within the same research project. The Toulouse team, with other colleagues, including Ian Smail (Durham University, UK) and Harald Ebeling (Institute for Astrophysics, Hawaii, USA), have again applied for observing time to continue this programme at the VLT , in order to measure the distances of multiple-lensed objects behind other massive clusters of galaxies observed with HST . With more observations of this type available, it will become possible to determine more accurately Omega and Lambda. Notes [1] The present project on the determination of cosmological parameters defining the geometry of the universe by means of multiple images that are gravitationally lensed by massive clusters of galaxies is carried out by a group of astronomers from the Observatoire Midi-Pyrenees (Toulouse, France), including Francisco

  18. Global projects and Astronomy awareness activities in Nepal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gautam, Suman

    2015-08-01

    Modern astronomy is a crowning achievement of human civilization which inspires teenagers to choose career in science and technology and is a stable of adult education. It is a unique and cost effective tool for furthering sustainable global development because of its technological, scientific and cultural dimensions which allow us to reach with the large portion of the community interact with children and inspire with our wonderful cosmos.Using astronomy to stimulate quality and inspiring education for disadvantaged children is an important goal of Nepal Astronomical Society (NASO) since its inception. NASO is carrying out various awareness activities on its own and in collaboration with national and international organizations like Central Department of Physics Tribhuvan University (TU), International astronomical Union (IAU), Department of Physics Prithvi Narayan Campus Pokhara, Nepal academy of science and technology (NAST), Global Hands on Universe (GHOU), EU- UNAWE and Pokhara Astronomical Society (PAS) to disseminate those activities for the school children and teachers in Nepal. Our experiences working with kids, students, teachers and public in the field of universe Awareness Activities for the school children to minimize the abstruse concept of astronomy through some practical approach and the project like Astronomy for the visually impaired students, Galileo Teacher Training program and International School for young astronomers (ISYA) outskirts will be explained which is believed to play vital role in promoting astronomy and space science activities in Nepal.

  19. SIP: A Web-Based Astronomical Image Processing Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonetti, J. H.

    1999-12-01

    I have written an astronomical image processing and analysis program designed to run over the internet in a Java-compatible web browser. The program, Sky Image Processor (SIP), is accessible at the SIP webpage (http://www.phys.vt.edu/SIP). Since nothing is installed on the user's machine, there is no need to download upgrades; the latest version of the program is always instantly available. Furthermore, the Java programming language is designed to work on any computer platform (any machine and operating system). The program could be used with students in web-based instruction or in a computer laboratory setting; it may also be of use in some research or outreach applications. While SIP is similar to other image processing programs, it is unique in some important respects. For example, SIP can load images from the user's machine or from the Web. An instructor can put images on a web server for students to load and analyze on their own personal computer. Or, the instructor can inform the students of images to load from any other web server. Furthermore, since SIP was written with students in mind, the philosophy is to present the user with the most basic tools necessary to process and analyze astronomical images. Images can be combined (by addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division), multiplied by a constant, smoothed, cropped, flipped, rotated, and so on. Statistics can be gathered for pixels within a box drawn by the user. Basic tools are available for gathering data from an image which can be used for performing simple differential photometry, or astrometry. Therefore, students can learn how astronomical image processing works. Since SIP is not part of a commercial CCD camera package, the program is written to handle the most common denominator image file, the FITS format.

  20. Orbiting Astronomical Observatory-C (OAO-C): Press kit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allaway, H. G.

    1972-01-01

    Mission planning for the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory-C (OAO-C) is presented. The characteristics of the observatory and its capabilities are described. The following experiments are discussed: (1) Princeton Experiment Package, (2) X-ray experiment, and (3) guest investigator program. Results of the OAO-2 observatory are presented. A tabulation of flight events is included.