Where We Meet: 17540 Avenue Of The Arts, Surprise, Arizona (Unitarian Universalist Church)
(WVAC is not affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Church)
Tuesday, September 1st, 2020 at 7pm Doors open at 6:45.
We meet nine times a year from September to May:
General Meetings are held the first Tuesday of the month unless indicated (*)
2020: Sep 1st , Oct 6th, Nov 5th (* Thurs.), Dec 1st
2021: Jan 5th, Feb 2nd, Mar 2nd, April 6th, May 4th.
We offer a Members only December Holiday Party and May PicnicOur meetings feature great Guest Speakers – including staff astronomers from Arizona Observatories or professional astronomers from Arizona universities. Not a paid member? We welcome all visitors. If you enjoy the program we ask that you show your appreciation by contributing to our Donation Scope or joining the club.
Future MeetingsJuly 7th Members Only Workshop (ZOOM): John Cline has been busy organizing our clubs records and has put together a very interesting presentation of our clubs history since 1986. Members please check your email for detail meeting information. If you cannot find your emails please contact us at: email@example.com August 4th 2020 Virtual Meeting 6:00 pm Arizona time or 6:00 pm PDT Speaker: Dr. Rosaly M. C. Lopes Title: “Volcanism in the Solar System” Dr. Rosaly M. C. Lopes is a Senior Research Scientist at JPL and Editor-in-Chief of the planetary journal Icarus. She obtained a B.Sc. in astronomy and Ph.D. in planetary science from University College London, UK. Her research expertise is on planetary geology and volcanology and she has studied Mars, Io, and Titan. She was a member of Galileo’s Near-Infrared Mapping Spectrometer team from 1991-2003 and of the Cassini Titan Radar Mapper (2003-2019). She is the PI of the NASA Astrobiology Institute project “Habitability of Hydrocarbon Worlds: Titan and Beyond”. She is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Geological Society of America, and the American Geophysical Union. She has received several awards including the Carl Sagan Medal from the American Astronomical Society, the Ambassador Award from the American Geophysical Union, and two NASA Exceptional Public Service Medals. Her discovery of 71 active volcanoes on Io led to her being included in the 2006 Guinness Book of World records as the discoverer of the most active volcanoes anywhere. September 1st, 2020 – Program – Mr. James Renn will make our September presentation entitled “The Vatican Observatory and the Big Bang”. Mr Renn is a member of the Vatican Observatory Foundation Board of Directors, and is also on staff at the Walker Star Barn Planetarium in Cave Creek. He gives presentations on astronomical topics for both venues. The presentation begins with a short history of the legacy of the Vatican Observatory, which dates to 1582. It identifys notable members connected to the Observatory, beginning with Christopher Clavius and the 1582 calendar reform, The talk refers to the trial of Galileo as an example of conflict between faith and science, and mentions Angelo Secchi, a founding father of astrophysics. The lecture then discusses Fr. George LeMaitre, who used Einsteins equations to propose a theory of the origin of the Universe we now call “The Big Bang”. This is followed by a short overview of the present state of the Universe and how how the name “Big Bang” was coined by Professor Fred Hoyle in 1949. Finally, the presenter discusses philosophical concepts that personal at the Vatican encounter when they discuss the evolution of the Universe. October 6th 2020 At this time we’re not sure if we’ll have an actual physical meeting or a virtual meeting. In either case the speaker for October will be presenting his presentation virtually. Guest Speaker: Tom Field, President Field Tested Systems LLC Contributing Editor, Sky & Telescope Magazine Astronomical Spectra: www.rspec-astro.com Classroom Spectra: www.fieldtestedsystems.com A live Q&A after the 45 minute presentation. Topic: “You can almost touch the stars” Even if you wanted to touch a star, they’re all impossibly distant. Despite these great distances, astronomers have learned an enormous amount about stars. How? The most common method to study the stars is called spectroscopy, which is the science of analyzing the colorful rainbow spectrum produced by a prism-like device. Until recently, spectroscopy was too expensive and too complicated for all but a handful of amateurs. Today, though, new tools make spectroscopy accessible to almost all of us. You no longer need a PhD, dark skies, long exposures, enormous aperture … or a big budget! With your current telescope and FITS camera (or a simple web cam or even a DSLR without a telescope) you can now easily study the stars yourself. Wouldn’t you like to detect the atmosphere on Neptune or the red shift of a quasar right from your own backyard?! This talk, with lots of interesting examples, will show you what it’s all about and help you understand how spectroscopy is used in research. Even if you are an armchair astronomer, understanding this field will enhance your understanding of the things your read and the night sky. Speaker Bio: Tom Field is has been a Contributing Editor at Sky & Telescope Magazine for the past 7 years. He is the author of the RSpec software (www.rspec-astro.com) which received the S&T “Hot Product” award in 2011. Tom is a popular speaker who has spoken to hundreds of clubs via the web at many conferences, including NEAF, the NEAF Imaging Conference, PATS, the Winter Star Party, the Advanced Imaging Conference, SCAE, and others. His enthusiastic style is lively and engaging. He promises to open the door for you to this fascinating field! November 7th (Thursday Meeting due to the election) General Meeting Guest Speaker: Dr. Patrick A Young Presentation Topic: ” Supernova: Life and Death Among the Stars” Dr. Young is an astrophysicist and astrobiologist who simulates stellar evolution, supernovae, and the synthesis of elements. He also studies planetary habitability and target selection for future life-detection missions. Assoc. Prof. Patrick A. Young Associate Director, Community Outreach Associate Director, Inclusive Community School of Earth and Space Exploration Arizona State University May 4th WVAC Picnic/Swap Meet/Star Party (Alex Vrenios will be bring his Solar Telescope COOL) (Event Volunteers needed)
Typical meeting agendas are as follows:
- Coffee and Cookies Available
- Opening Welcome and Remarks
- Guest Speaker presentation with Q&A
- Door Prize and 50/50 Raffle
- Club Workshop (if time permits)
- Closing Remarks