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Astro Cafe: 16 June

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Astro Cafe will convene at Pier 17 in Davis Bay at 7:45 PM on Friday, 16 June, 2017. Public are welcome!  We’ll have coffee and weather permitting will take our telescopes out to the south end of the seawall for public viewing

 

Public Viewing: 10 June

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We’ll be opening the SCC Observatory at the Sechelt Airport at 9:30 PM on Saturday, 10 June for public viewing. Check out this post on the day of the event for weather updates

UPDATE 10 JUNE: As of 11:30 am ClearDarkSky is showing a viewing window suitable for public viewing this evening. We are opening as planned.

8 PM: Clear Dark Sky still showing a window to observe the sky, but the sky doesn’t look that promising yet. Scott Harlow and I will go up at 9 to take a look. If the sky looks do-able, we will open.

WELL… I took a look at 8:45 and 90% of the sky is overcast. There is a bit of sky clearing to the NE but by the time it gets to the observatory, assuming it doesn’t close in, its going to be midnight. I’m cancelling the opening of the observatory.

Charles Ennis

Speaker for 9 June: Julio Navarro

navarro_0Our speaker at the Sunshine Coast Arts Centre, 5714 Medusa St, Sechelt, at 7:30 PM on Friday, June 9, will be Dr. Julio Navarro, whose topic will be Dark Matter and Dark Energy: the puzzling forces that shape our Universe. Admittance is by donation.

Royal Astronomical Society Visit

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That’s Charles in the background talking to RAS Council member Stephen Sergeant in the RAS Library at Burlington House

On 12 May our President, Charles Ennis, attended the President’s Address of the Royal Astronomical Society at Burlington House in London, which has been their base of operations since 1874. Charles then attended the reception afterwards in the RAS library.

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Public Viewing: 13 May

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We’ll be opening the SCC Observatory at the Sechelt Airport at 8 PM on Saturday, 13 May for public viewing. Check out this post on the day of the event for weather updates

Astro Cafe: 19 May

astro-cafe

Astro Cafe will convene at Pier 17 in Davis Bay at 8:00 PM on Friday, 19 May, 2017. Public are welcome!  We’ll have coffee and weather permitting will take our telescopes out to the south end of the seawall for public viewing

NOTE: As Pier 17 is still under renovation, we’ll be meeting at Wheatberries next door instead at 7 pm.

Speaker for 12 May: Dr. Sun Kwok

stardust_b (2)At 7:30 PM, 12 May 2017, at the Sunshine Coast Art Centre, 5714 Medusa St., Sechelt, The Sunshine Coast Centre welcomes Dr. Sun Kwok, whose topic will be “Stardust: the cosmic seeds of life.” How did life originate on Earth?  For over 50 years, scientists believed that life was the result of chemistry involving simple molecules such as methane and ammonia cooking in a primordial soup.  Recent space observations have revealed that old stars are capable of making very complex organic compounds.  The stars then ejected the organics and spread them all over the Milky Way Galaxy.  There is evidence that these organic dust particles actually reached the early Solar System.  Through bombardments by comets and asteroids, the early Earth inherited significant amounts of star dust.  Was the development of life assisted by the arrival of these extraterrestrial materials?  In this talk, we describe discoveries in astronomy and solar system science over the last 10 years that resulted in a new perspective on the origin of life.

Prof. Sun Kwok’s research areas are astrochemistry and stellar evolution.  He is best known for his theory on the origin of planetary nebulae and the death of Sun-like stars.  His recent research has been on the topic of the synthesis of complex organic compounds in the late stages of stellar evolution.  He is the author of many books, including The Origin and Evolution of Planetary Nebulae (Cambridge, 2000), Cosmic Butterflies (Cambridge, 2001), Physics and Chemistry of the Interstellar Medium (University Science Books, 2007), Organic Matter in the Universe (Wiley, 2012), and Stardust: the cosmic seeds of life (Springer, 2013).  He has been a guest observer on many space missions, including the Hubble Space Telescope and the Infrared Space Observatory.

Prof. Kwok currently serves as President of IAU International Astronomical Union (IAU), Commission on Astrobiology.  Previously, he has served as the President of IAU Commission on Interstellar Matter (2012-2015) and chairman of IAU Planetary Nebulae Working Group (1994-2001).

Admission is free: donations gratefully accepted at the door.