Upcoming Events

Sat May 30 @ 7:30PM
Family Safari Night Stargaze - NCMNS Prairie Ridge
Fri Jun 12 @ 8:00PM
RAC Observing Session (RACOBS)
Thu Jun 18 @ 7:00PM
RAC Imaging Meeting
Thu Jun 25 @ 7:00PM
Indoor RAC Meeting: Planetary Atmospheres
Fri Jul 10 @ 8:00PM
RAC Observing Session (RACOBS)

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Announcements

The next RAC Observing Session (RACOBS) will be Friday, June 12th, 2015 at 8:00pm. Check back on the day of the observing event after 5:000 PM for go/no-go status and time.

 

RAC members, for a list of up coming Public Observing Events for which you can volunteer to support, please click > HERE

2015 State Wide Star Party

RAC Member at Howell Woods Each April, as part of the North Carolina Science Festival, dozens of State Wide Star Parties are held.  This year was no different.  The Raleigh Astronomy Club supported 4 different star parties this year:

  • Howell Woods, Four Oaks – April 18
  • New School Montessori Center, Holly Springs – April 21
  • Annie Louise Wilkerson Nature Preserve Park, Raleigh – April 24
  • Prairie Ridge EcoStation, Raleigh – April 24

A brief review of each event follows below…

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April Meeting: Astronomy with Binoculars

Speaker: Phyllis Lang

For our April meeting, long time RAC member Phyllis Lang gave an excellent talk on Binocular Astronomy. Phyllis described the different types of binoculars available for astronomy use, how to get the most out of them and what objects look best in binoculars. Many people assume that the best astronomy observing is done with the biggest telescopes. But many objects - the moon, large open clusters and large nebula look as good or better through binoculars. Binoculars offer a wider field of view than telescopes and can provide a much better showcase for large objects or rich starfield patches of night sky.

Astronomy with Binoculars

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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March Meeting: The End of Night

Speaker: Paul Bogard

Is there any intelligent light out there? Not if we're talking about the way we light our cities. Paul Bogard, author of "The End of Night", gave an outstanding talk at our March meeting on light pollution and what we miss when we lose a dark night sky. About 100 people attended this joint meeting of RAC, the Audubon Society and the NC Herpetological Society to learn more about the impact of light pollution on the environment and our well being.

Paul Bogard at NCMNS

 

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Weathered-out in February

Winter can be the best time of the year for Astronomy if you do not mind bundling up. The air is at its driest and clearest of the year and the stars just seem brighter. 

Or it can snow a lot, be overcast and totally shut the hobby down. That was our club experience in February with most of our events, including the indoor meeting, lost to bad weather.

But you can never keep a good man down. The RAC snowman was able to work in some daytime lunar observing amid all the snow.

Hopefully, March is kinder to the club so we can get our telescopes out to enjoy the night sky once again.

RAC Snowman
 
Astronomy Days 2015

The Raleigh Astronomy Club and North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences held our Astronomy Days 2015 event in downtown Raleigh over the weekend of January 24th and 25th. Over 14,000 visitors of all ages attended this year. Our visitors enjoyed dozens of exhibits, attended presentations and participated in workshops on a wide range of astronomy topics. This year's event had a Pluto and Outer Solar System theme with presentations covering the New Horizons mission to Pluto, Comets and the Kuiper Belt.

RAC Table        Solar Observing

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January RACOBS - Night of the Comet

We got January off to a good start with over 20 club members and guests attending our monthly observing session at Big Woods. Comet Lovejoy was a popular target and easily found next to the Pleiades. Alan Dyer, a Canadian astronomy writer, produced this beautiful image of Comet Lovejoy and the Pleiades.

Comet Lovejoy next to Pleiades - Alan Dyer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Howell Woods