Thursday, April 02, 2009

100 Hours of Astronomy

100 Hours of Astronomy begins today! It is a part of the International Year of Astronomy. Now if I could just figure out how to turn the sound off the Astronomy Year site! Ah, it went off by itself. Odd. Ah, there it is: an autostart slide show. That's a pain.

There are all kinds of tie-ins to this. Just for the 100 Hours program there are events going on all over the word. Looks like there are no scheduled events close to me.

The tornado watches will keep me from stargazing tonight anyway, though I guess I could use this virtual observatory, or go to a planetarium show or explore the stars in my web browser with Neave Planetarium. I can take a multimedia tour of the solar system or discover Views of the Solar System. You can get a telescope just like the one Galileo used. (Good luck finding nights as dark as the ones he had.) Help classify a million galaxies during the 100 hours.

There's a primer on basic Astronomy here. Astronomy Magazine and Sky and Telescope offer a lot of general information. There's a daily podcast for the year here. There's an atlas of the universe here that "is designed to give everyone an idea of what our universe actually looks like." There are Hubble photos here and here. Caltech offers cool activities at their Cool Cosmos site. There's a Facebook group for the year and several event pages and groups for the "100 Hours".

There's even a theme song:

There is a lot of fun stuff online and in the real world sky -if you're lucky enough to have clear skies during these 100 hours. The year is young, though, and there'll be clear skies a-plenty before it's done.

4/3/2009: The Bad Astronomy blog has some links.

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