IAU Astronomy Outreach Newsletter

2015 #7

In this newsletter:

  1. From the Editors
  2. CosmicLight IYL2015: GalileoMobile Light-Year teaser
  3. CosmicLight IYL2015: Measuring the Speed of Light Citizen Science Project
  4. HighLIGHT of the month: Astronomy Festival on the National Mall
  5. CosmicLight around the world
  6. The IAU Office of Astronomy for Development Newsletter #8 available online
  7. UNAWE Universe in a Box honoured with Best Science Education Resource Award
  8. Planetary maps for children
  9. Night-sky Measurement with Digital Camera: Campaign Observation 2015
  10. astroEPO Shorts by AstroEDU team
  11. Upcoming meetings & global events
  12. Contributions to this newsletter


0) From the Editors

Light pollution is one of the major focus areas for the International Year of Light this year, so we were glad to be at the "Artificial Light at Night" conference concerning light pollution. The conference, hosted at Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, over the past few days, covered a wide range of topics on light pollution. One topic was dedicated to finding good solutions to the problem of blue-rich LEDs by using amber LEDs and PC-amber LEDs; the spectral mismatch of the lighting we used. Recent progress in setting up international dark sky parks and reserves was demonstrated to participants during a visit to a state-of-the-art dark sky park. This case study could be seen as a standard for others to follow. Another interesting presented topic was the change of legislation towards light pollution in Slovenia. These are only examples, and we will share some of these stories in the upcoming issues of this Newsletter.

In this issue, we highlight the 8th Newsletter of IAU Office of Astronomy for Development, now available online. We wish you pleasant reading! If you still haven’t named an exoworld, the deadline to suggest a name is 15 June. Find the closest institution near you registered in the IAU Directory for World Astronomy and don't miss this opportunity. We would also like to congratulate our partner UNAWE. Their resource “Universe in a Box”, won Best Science Education Resource Award by Scientix — the European Network of Science Education. Finally, a special mention to the third ESO Astronomy Camp for Secondary School Students, featured in upcoming meetings and events. This year the camp will focus on the topic of the Solar System and Extrasolar Planets.

Clear Skies!
Lina Canas & Sze-leung Cheung
IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach


1) CosmicLight IYL2015: GalileoMobile Light-Year teaser

The teaser for the new GalileoMobile documentary Ano-Luz (Light-year) is out. This documentary follows GalileoMobile's expedition to northern Bolivia and Brazil where the project performed astronomy activities, paving the way for the celebrations of the International Year of Light 2015.

Details: https://vimeo.com/127301816


2) CosmicLight IYL2015: Support “Measuring the Speed of Light” Citizen Science Project

“Measuring the Speed of Light” website is promoting a citizen science experiment to measure the speed of light. This project represents an interesting opportunity to perform simple observations with a small spotting scope or telescope. By harnessing multiple observations from around the world, this project will be able to recreate Roemer's famous measurement of the speed of light. All data obtained will be publicly available and used in the Scottish school curriculum.

Support the project: http://speedoflight2015.co.uk/


3) HighLIGHT of the month: Astronomy Festival on the National Mall

The Sixth Annual Astronomy Festival on the National Mall (AFNM) will take place on Friday, 19 June, 2015. AFNM was inspired by the 2009 White House Star Party and was started in 2010 with the co-sponsorship of The White House Office of Science and Technology policy.This year, middle school students from the Carnegie Academy for Science Education will bring telescopes for the public to use.

Last year, NSF made a one minute video of the event: http://nsf.gov/news/mmg/mmg_disp.jsp?med_id=76428


4) CosmicLight around the world

On 24 May, Sydney, Australia, hosted a panel of professional astronomers entitled “The Story of Light”, inspired by the International Year of Light 2015. During the discussion, the panel described the many ways astronomers use light to uncover the exciting mysteries of the Universe and improve our understanding of cosmology, exoplanets, the search for life and more.

The University of Namibia (UNAM) will celebrate the International Year of Light 2015 by organizing the International Conference on Light Science and Applications (ICLSA) from 26–28 October, 2015, in Windhoek. The main objectives of this conference will be to create awareness, share and gain knowledge in light sciences, educate rural dwellers to use solar applications and develop advanced research and technology in Namibia in light sciences. Astronomy topics are included in the scope of the conference. Please note that the deadline for abstract submissions is 10 June.

In the next few weeks Light: Beyond the Bulb — the open-source international exhibition programme, will be visiting: Cork, Ireland; Madrid, Spain; Toulouse, France; Olsztyn, Poland; León, Mexico; Azores, Portugal, and also several different places in the United States, such as San Jose, CA; Flint, MI; New York City, NY, and Bellingham, WA.
To find Light: Beyond the Bulb in a place near you please go to: http://lightexhibit.org/iylexhibits.html

On 6 June, Hiratsuka, Japan, will host the third Astronomy Cosmic Light lecture series on “See the universe in Infrared & Radio Wave”.

Cikal Science Fair 2015 will be held in Jakarta, Indonesia, on 9 June. An astronomer will be speaking about light, especially focusing on the challenges of light pollution that affect astronomy research. This event will also host a competition on a design poster about light pollution.

From 12 to 16 June, York, United Kingdom, will host Big Telescopes!. This exhibition intends to celebrate light in all its forms and find out how light allows us to discover the wonders of space. Over the course of five days, there will be talks, demonstration lectures, school workshops and family events.


5) The IAU Office of Astronomy for Development Newsletter #8 available online

The eighth edition of the IAU-OAD Newsletter, containing news from the office, can be found online at the following address: http://www.astro4dev.org/newsletters/. Enjoy reading! This newsletter is issued quarterly and reports on current OAD activities.

If you have any comments or suggestions, please email kg@astro4dev.org. The OAD team looks forward to hearing from you on with any thoughts you may have about the OAD.


6) UNAWE Universe in a Box Honoured with Best Science Education Resource Award

Universe in a Box is the low-cost, inquiry-based astronomy education resource of Universe Awareness (UNAWE).

On 22 May, Universe in a Box was awarded the Scientix Resources Award for “STEM Teaching Material Addressed to Teachers”.

Details: http://www.unawe.org/updates/unawe-update-1534/


7) Planetary maps for children

This project features a series of detailed, hand-drawn lunar and planetary maps created for children. The six Solar System bodies mapped by planetary scientists and graphic artists are now available in 11 different languages.These maps are developed according to the latest data from space probes and supported by a website where the user can find background information.

Details: https://childrensmaps.wordpress.com/


8) Night-sky measurement with a digital camera: Campaign Observation 2015

The 2015 Campaign of night-sky brightness observation with a digital camera, by the Japanese astronomy group Hoshizora Kodan, will start this summer. This campaign aims to make a night-sky brightness map of East Asia, and anyone who has a digital camera can join.

You can find details on capturing images and uploading your data in a "4 Steps for Measurement" guide outlined here: http://dcdock.kodan.jp/?lang=en


9) astroEPO Shorts by astroEDU team

astroEPO Shorts is a series of weekly selected news from the astroEDU team. All topic are related to astronomy communication and astronomy education. astroEDU is a platform that allows educators to discover, review, distribute, improve and remix astronomy education activities and offers a free peer-review service by professionals in education and science.

Details: https://medium.com/@iauastroedu


10) Upcoming meetings & global events

a) ECSITE Annual Conference 2015: Food for curious minds
Date: 11–13 June
Location: Trento, Italy
More information: http://www.ecsite.eu/annual-conference

b) Science on Stage 2015
Date: 17–20 June
Location: London, UK
More information: http://www.science-on-stage.eu/page/display/4/14/0/festival-2015

c) European Week of Astronomy and Space Science (EWASS)
Date: 22–26 June
Location: Tenerife, Spain
More information: http://eas.unige.ch/EWASS2015/

d) Global Hands-On Universe Conference 2015
Date: 4–5 August
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
More information: http://handsonuniverse.org/ghou2015/

e) Galileo Teacher Trainings Programme (GTTP) International Teacher Training Workshop
Date: 8–9 August
Location: Honolulu, Hawai'i, USA
More Information: http://handsonuniverse.org/ghou2015/

f) The 29th IAU General Assembly
Date: 3–14 August 2015
Location: Honolulu, Hawai'i, USA
More information: http://astronomy2015.org/

Focus Meetings:

6–7 August: Communicating Astronomy with the Public in the Big Data Era
More information: http://astronomy2015.org/focus_meeting_19

11–13 August: Mitigating Threats of Light Pollution and Radio Frequency Interference
More information: http://astronomy2015.org/focus_meeting_21

11–13 August: Astronomical Heritage: Progressing the UNESCO–IAU Initiative
More information: http://astronomy2015.org/focus_meeting_2

13–14 August:: Astronomy for Development
More information: http://astronomy2015.org/focus_meeting_20

g) Hawaiian, Oceanic and Global Cultural Astronomy: Tangible and Intangible Heritage
Date: 16–20 August 2015
Location: Hilo, Hawaii, USA
More information: http://www2.astronomicalheritage.net/index.php/community/past-events/cultural-astronomy-meeting-big-island

h) Cartography Beyond the Ordinary World
Date: 21-22 August 2015
Location: Niteroi
More Information: http://niteroi2015.elte.hu/

i) International Observe the Moon Night
Date: 19 September 2015
Location: All around the World
More Information: http://observethemoonnight.org/

j) UNAWE International Workshop
Date: 5–9 October 2015
Location: Leiden, The Netherlands
More information: http://www.unawe.org

k) Earth Observation Science 2.0
Date: 12–14 October 2015
Location: ESRIN, Frascati, Italy
More information: http://eoscience20.org/

l) Conference on Light Science and Applications (ICLSA)
Date: 26–28 October, 2015
Location: University of Namibia (UNAM), Windhoek main campus, Namibia
More information: http://www.unam.edu.na/light2015

m) Astronomy 7
Date: 3–6 November 2015
Location: Sydney, Australia
More information: http://dotastronomy.com/blog/2015/05/join-us-for-astronomy-7-in-sydney/

n) 2nd Symposium of the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR): Water and Life in the Universe
Date: 9–13 November 2015
Location: Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil
More Information: http://cosparbrazil2015.org/

o) ESO Astronomy Camp
Date: 26 December 2015 to 1 January 2016
Location: Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley, Saint-Barthélemy, Nus, Italy
More information: http://www.eso.org/public/announcements/ann15038/

p) Communicating Astronomy with the Public 2016 Conference
Date: 16–20 May 2016
Location: Medellín, Colombia
More information: https://www.facebook.com/CAPconference

q) International Planetarium Society Conference
Date:19–25 June 2016
Location: Warsaw, Poland
More Information: http://www.ips2016.org/

r) IAU Symposia IAUS 326: Research in Astronomy Education: Far-Reaching Impacts and Future Directions
Date: 4–7 October, 2016
Location: Heidelberg, Germany
More Information: https://www.iau.org/science/meetings/future/symposia/1159/


11) Contributions to this newsletter

Here at the IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach, we are always looking for more news about astronomical education and outreach events around the world, so please share your story with us! If you are organising any large-scale events at a regional or international level, offering astronomy education or communication job positions, have any special innovative projects or inspiring stories, are looking for professional–amateur collaboration in astronomy, or have created any educational resources, please let us know by sending an email to outreach@iau.org.


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