Night Sky Lectures Fall Series

The Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority provides Night Sky Education at the  Mill of Kintail.  Pat Browne, a member  of the Night Sky Conservation Team  has put together a series of 5 lectures for publication.

In these lectures from our  Solar System to distant Quasars in ‘look-back time’… with plenty of observing exercises along the way….

You can download this Fall Lecture series by clicking on the links as well as Observing Exercises. These exercises show you how to find the object by using the techniques we learn about in the sessions. The exercises are geared for Fall Observing.

  1. Planning your observations
  2. Finding your celestial target using the star-hopping technique.
  3. Recording your observations
  4. Using guides before during and after the observation

Lecture 1 Materials

Here is lecture 1    Download AstrocourseFallLecture1

Here is the comet movie http://millstone.typepad.com/files/garad2-2.avi

Here is the link to a year on earth http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhqzW97_47w&feature=relmfu

Here is a short segment on how to orient yourself in the celestial sphere: Download EquatorialCoords

Here is the DarkSky  Campus video for the Night Sky Education in lecture 1 Download Dark Sky Campus

Lecture 2 Materials 

Here is lecture 2:  Download AstrocourseFall2012lec2

Here is a lecture on the Moon and First Quarter Lunar Observations:

Download MoonFall2012

Here are the 2 videos on the moon courtesy Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter:

Tour of the Moon

Lunar Evolution

Here are some sample Lunar Exercises

Download LunarSampleExercises

Lecture 3 Materials

Here is lecture 3  Download AstroCourseFallLecture3

Here is a link to the Astronomy Resource page:Night Sky Resource Material

Here are the course notes and observational exercises for the second half of the course which includes Star clouds and nebulae in the Milky Way, and galaxies beyond our Milky Way galaxy.

Lecture 4 Materials

Download AstroCourseFallLecture4

Here are 2 videos explaining the first two rungs of the distance ladder:

Definition of the Parsec

Cepheid Variables – Starlight Variations Tell us Distance

Lecture 5  Materials

Here are the course notes  for Lecture 5

Download AstroCourseFallLecture5

To answer the question, can the southernmost point of Canada see the LMC…?  See what objects are visible based on our geographical latitude

Download VisibleStarsAndLatitude

Observing Nebulae Clusters ObservingNebulaeClusters

Observing Galaxies Download ObservingGalaxies

For more detail on the M42 Great Orion Nebula download this movie:
Download OrionAnim, (which goes with the text in ObservingNebulaeClusters)

Public Astronomy Education:

For those of you who would like to know how to check and respond to popular mis-conceptions regarding astronomy, you have an advocate…

Dr. Phil Plait, a public educator on the topic of astronomy has created  a virtual encyclopedia of astronomical errors, and is one of the most popular science blogs on the web, with thousands of fans eagerly reading it every day.

Visit: http://www.badastronomy.com/bad/index.html