Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Meeting: Tuesday, March 13

Tonight, we talked about our budget a lot.

The SkyScout that we ordered is here! Unfortunately it seems that the copper dome of the observatory might be interfering with the magnetic components of the SkyScout when we're on the deck of the observatory. We'll have to work with it some more, but it will definitely be useful on the ground and at dark sky sites.

Things we want to buy with this year's budget:
Guy Ottewell's Astronomy Calendar: $25- voted yes in the meeting
BlueStar telescope controller- previously mentioned a couple meetings ago
Oberwerk 20x80mm big binoculars and one of these types of mounts to put it on- will run about $500
That's not the actual mount we want to get, but the page we showed at the meeting does not have the option to direct link to a specific page.
99 Celestial Sights- $25
A book so we know what to look at with our new binoculars.

Things we want to put in the budget for next year:
At least one visiting speaker
Subscriptions to astronomy magazines
The Cosmos book of astronomy photographs
We would like to plan trips for next year, but Student Senate has some pretty strict rules about how university funds can be used for trips. We'll try to get this clarified at the budget meeting for the next year, which coincidentally is tomorrow, March 14.
So if you have anything you can think of to put in next year's budget, email one of the officers right away.

We also discussed the recent eclipse, which was basically cloudy for everyone in Ohio and surrounding areas. If we could have seen it, though, we would have seen the information described on this page:
the eclipse page we looked at in the meeting.

Why is the moon reddish during an eclipse? When the sun, earth, and moon are lined up in that order, the Earth's atmosphere extending above its surface refracts the light from the sun. The blue light scatters most, while the red makes it through the most. This is why the moon is tinted toward the red end of the spectrum- more of the light from the blue end has been bounced away by the atmosphere. The page linked above also has some information about upcoming lunar and solar eclipses.

The New Horizons Mission was also the source of much admiration as new pictures from the spacecraft's swing by Jupiter were released. Click on the Gallery link to see them.

The next event is the going-over-documents day on March 31, and the next observing session is April 14 at Hocking Hills.

We were reading a copy of the club constitution today, which includes provisions for a publication named "The Quasar," so the blog has been renamed accordingly.

Also, tomorrow, March 14 aka 3.14 is Pi Day. So hug your favorite irrational number.

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