By Bridget Coughlin
On Saturday, Oct. 24, from 8 to 11 p.m., members of the Ohio University community are invited to join department of astronomy faculty and students to observe the moon, Jupiter and other celestial objects at the College Gate. Small telescopes will be available for viewing.
This event is one of several planned on campus in honor of the International Year of Astronomy, a global celebration declared by the United Nations in order to build enthusiasm for astronomy and science. The worldwide celebration also commemorates the fact that, 400 years ago, Galileo built his first telescope and used it to view the night sky. He was the first to record what he saw of the stars and planets for others to read.
The university's celebration of the International Year of Astronomy has been ongoing throughout 2009, and culminates in the department of physics and astronomy's biennial open house, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 7, in the Clippinger Laboratories building.
Joseph Shields, chair of the physics and astronomy department, said this year's open house will include activities specifically to commemorate the International Year of Astronomy.
"This year we are happy to have a number of extra features at the open house dealing with astronomy, including a display on picking out telescopes, 'Ask an Astronomer' and talks on cosmology and on the history of astronomy in Ohio," Shields said.
Additional information on these programs can be found online.