IAU Astronomy Outreach Newsletter

2016 #4 February #2

In this newsletter:

  1. From the Editors
  2. IAU receives prestigious Edinburgh medal
  3. Vacancy for an astronomer at IAU — Office of Astronomy for Development
  4. 2016 Indonesia Total Solar Eclipse Astronomy Volunteer Outreach Program
  5. IAU National Outreach Contact Corner — News from Indonesia
  6. XV Latin American Regional IAU Meeting (LARIM 2016)
  7. Mitaka software
  8. Save the dates for Global Hands-on Universe 2016 in Norway
  9. Join ESO’s first social media gathering
  10. Meetings & global events around the world for 2016
  11. Contributions to IAU Outreach Newsletter for 2016


0) From the Editors

These past weeks have been really exciting! First, we would like to congratulate the LIGO team on the groundbreaking discovery of gravitational waves. Exciting times lie ahead for astronomy and science in general. In other news, the IAU and Kevin Govender, director of the Office of Astronomy for Development, have been awarded the Edinburgh Medal; we can’t stress how proud we are of this well-deserved honour. Many, many congratulations!

In this issue, we highlight the LARIM conference and in particular its section on education and outreach dedicated to astronomy. Colombia is a hotspot for outreach and science communication in 2016 as it is also hosting the Communicating Astronomy with the Public 2016 conference in May. Indonesia is the place to be if you want to enjoy March’s total solar eclipse, and you can still join our volunteer network by dedicating some of your time to support astronomy outreach and education in local schools.

We would like to inform you that the IAU Symposium 236 on Astronomy Education Research planned for 3–7 October 2016 in Heidelberg, Germany, has been cancelled. For details, please visit http://www.caperteam.com/iaus326/.

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


1) IAU receives prestigious Edinburgh medal

The Edinburgh Medal is a prestigious award given each year to men and women of science and technology whose professional achievements have made a significant contribution to the understanding and well-being of humanity. The 2016 Edinburgh Medal will be jointly awarded to Kevin Govender from the IAU’s Office of Astronomy for Development and the International Astronomical Union (IAU) for the creation and practical establishment of the Office of Astronomy for Development, which integrates the pursuit of scientific knowledge with social development for and with those most in need.

Learn more: https://www.iau.org/news/pressreleases/detail/iau1601/


2) Vacancy for an astronomer at IAU — Office of Astronomy for Development

The IAU — Office of Astronomy for Development is announcing a vacancy for an astronomer position in its office in Cape Town, South Africa. The candidates should have as minimum requirements: a PhD in an astronomy-related field, three years of postdoctoral or related research work, with relevant international experience and to be fluent in English (both written and spoken). The selection process will begin after 15 March 2016.

For all the requirements and other details: http://nrfintra.careerjunction.co.za/jobs/view/1927734/astronomer-in-cape-town-western-cape-at-national-research-foundation


3) 2016 Indonesia Total Solar Eclipse Astronomy Volunteer Outreach Program

If you’re going to visit Indonesia to see March’s total eclipse, please take some time to volunteer for astronomy outreach and education. Volunteers will help in conducting an outreach programme for school students in Ternate — covering solar observation techniques and safety (DIY eclipse glasses, etc.), and how to use general astronomy planetarium software. So, if you’re travelling to Indonesia to see March’s total eclipse, and you have experience in astronomy outreach, please join us in Ternate on 7 March and help make a difference to the local schools and children.

Learn more about the programme here: http://gerhana.langitselatan.com/en/iauoutreach/


4) IAU National Outreach Contact Corner — News from Indonesia

A lot of activities relating to the solar eclipse have been put together by local institutions such as langitselatan, one of the main organisers of Indonesian astronomy outreach and education efforts. On the group’s website, you’ll find a complete guide to the eclipse, including tips on how to observe the eclipse safely, detailed information about the different and best destinations, weather reports, infographics, and much more.

Learn more: http://gerhana.info/en/


5) XV Latin American Regional IAU Meeting (LARIM 2016)

From 3 to 7 October 2016, Colombia will host the Latin American Regional IAU Meeting. XV LARIM 2016, is the most important meeting of the astronomy and astrophysics community in Latin America and represents a significant milestone for Colombia as a member of the IAU. The meeting aims to promote and highlight the high-impact research activities conducted in the region, networking and foster collaborations. The conference aims to attract 500 participants.

Learn more: http://larim.unal.edu.co/#Contributions


6) Mitaka software

The Four-Dimensional Digital Universe (4D2U) Project of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) aims to image the latest astronomical data obtained by observations and numerical simulations. During the last few years it has developed various means of visualising the Universe, including the Mitaka software and dozens of movie clips. Mitaka, a free downloadable software program that creates a visualisation of the Universe based on real astronomical data, is now available in several languages. With this upgrade, many people all over the globe can use a PC to navigate through the digital Universe in their mother tongue.

Learn more: http://www.nao.ac.jp/en/news/topics/2016/20160209-4d2u.html


7) Save the dates for Global Hands-on Universe 2016 in Norway

The Global Hands-On Universe Conference (GHOU 2016) will take place in Stord, Norway from 22 to 27 August 2016, along with the annual Galileo Teacher Training Program (GTTP), an international workshop for teachers and educators. The conference will focus on improving and propagating the GTTP and GHOU community throughout the world. The GHOU 2016 conference will create a platform for professional astronomers and educators to meet and share hands-on minds-on learning in the framework of Global Hands-on Universe network, bridging cultural and political divides.

Learn more: http://handsonuniverse.org/ghou2016/registration/


8) Join ESO’s first social media gathering

ESO is organising its first social media gathering in Chile to coincide with the 2016 transit of Mercury. #MeetESO will be a meeting dedicated exclusively to avid social media users from ESO Science Outreach Network (ESON) countries who enjoy sharing information about astronomy. Unlike a regular tweet-up, for #MeetESO only eight social media users will be hand-picked. Finalists will be announced at the beginning of March.

YIf you want to be on their radar as ESO’s team scans for possible participants, you can learn more about #MeetESO here: http://www.eso.org/public/announcements/ann16010/.


9) Meetings & global events around the world for 2016

Here is the list of the most awaited astronomy outreach & education conferences and events for 2016. Plan ahead for a 2016 full of exciting events. Have we missed something? Share with us your astronomy outreach and education international meetings or events via outreach@iau.org.

a) Global Astronomy Month
Date: April 2016
Location: All around the world
More information: http://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/

b) Yuri’s Night
Date: April 2016
Location: All around the world
More information: https://yurisnight.net/

c) 9th International Meeting of Astronomy and Astronautics
Date: 14—16 April 2016
Location: Campos de Goytacazes, Brazil
More Information: http://9imaa.eventbrite.com/

d) Robotic Telescopes in Education workshop
Date: 18—19 May 2016
Location: Leiden, the Netherlands
More Information: https://lcogt.net/blog/robotic-telescopes-in-education-workshop/

e) Communicating Astronomy with the Public 2016 conference
Date: 16—20 May 2016
Location: Medellín, Colombia
More Information: https://www.facebook.com/CAPconference

f) International Meteor Conference (IMC) 2016
Date: 2—5 June 2016
Location: Egmond, Netherlands
More Information: http://imc2016.imo.net/

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

h) .Astronomy 8
Date: 21—23 June 2016
Location: Oxford, United Kingdom
More Information: http://dotastronomy.com/events/eight/

i) SPIE Astronomical Telescopes +Instrumentation 2016
Date: 26 June – 1 July 2016
Location: Edinburgh International Conference Centre, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
More Information: http://spie.org/SPIE-ASTRONOMY-conference

j) Royal Astronomical Society National Astronomy Meeting 2016
Date: 27 June to 1 July 2016
Location: Nottingham, United Kingdom
More Information: https://www.ras.org.uk/news-and-press/2730-national-astronomy-meeting-2016

k) Starlight, Beyond Light Pollution 2016 Conference
Date: 2—10 July 2016
Location: La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain
More Information: http://www.astro-travels.com/La-Palma-Starlight-2016.html

l) European Week of Astronomy and Space Science (EWASS)
Date: 4—8 July 2016
Location: Athens, Greece
More Information: http://eas.unige.ch/EWASS2016/

m) International Astronomical Youth Camp (IAYC)
Date: 24 July – 13 August
Location: Exmoor National Park, Somerset, UK
More Information: http://www.iayc.org/

n) 41st COSPAR Scientific Assembly
Date: 30 July — 7 August 2016
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
More Information: https://cosparhq.cnes.fr/content/cospar-2016-0

o) Global Hands-On Universe Conference (GHOU 2016) & Galileo Teacher Training Program (GTTP) International Workshop
Date: 22–27 August 2016
Location: Stord, Norway
More Information: http://handsonuniverse.org/ghou2016/registration/

p) Twenty Fourth Annual Conference (SEAC 2016)
Date: 12–16 September 2016
Location: Bath, England
More Information: http://www.seac2016.com/

q) International Conference on Artificial Light at Night (ALAN 2016)
Date: 26—28 September 2016
Location: Cluj, Napoca, Romania
More Information: http://www.artificiallightatnight.org/

r) LARIM 2016: XV Latin American Regional IAU Meeting
Date: 3—7 October, 2016
Location: Cartagena de Indias, Colombia
More Information: http://larim.unal.edu.co/

s) IAU Symposia IAUS 326: Research in Astronomy Education: Far-reaching Impacts and Future Directions
Date: 4–7 October 2016 CANCELLED
Location: Heidelberg, Germany
More Information: http://www.caperteam.com/iaus326/

t) International Observe the Moon Night
Date: 8 October 2016
Location: All around the world
More Information: http://observethemoonnight.org/

u) DPS-EPSC Joint Meeting 2016
Date: 16—21 October 2016
Location: Pasadena, CA, United States
More Information: http://www.epsc2015.eu/

v) IX International Conference on Oriental Astronomy
Date: 15–18 November 2016
Location: Pune, India
More Information: http://icoa2016.tifr.res.in


10) Contributions to IAU Outreach Newsletter for 2016

Here at the IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach, we are always looking for more news about astronomical education and outreach events around the world. In 2016 please continue to share your stories with us! If you are organizing any large-scale events at a regional or international level, offering astronomy education or communication job positions, have any innovative projects or inspiring stories, looking for professional–amateur collaboration in astronomy, or have created any educational resources, let us know by sending an email to outreach@iau.org.