Upcoming Events

Fri Mar 27 @ 7:30PM
Public Observing - Art in the Evening - CANCELLED
Sat Mar 28 @ 7:00PM
Equipment Clinic
Fri Apr 10 @ 7:00PM
RAC Observing Session (RACOBS)
Thu Apr 16 @ 7:00PM
RAC Imaging Meeting
Sat Apr 18 @ 1:00PM
Howell Woodstock - Statewide Star Party
Thu Apr 23 @ 7:00PM
Indoor RAC Meeting: Astronomy with Binoculars

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Announcements

The next Telescope Clinic will be Saturday, March 28th, 2015. The event is free to attend but pre-registration is required; to register, click >> HERE.

 

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

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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January Meeting: Black Holes - Past, Present & Future

SteveChristensen, Ph.D. provided a very engaging presentation on back holes to almost 50 members and guests in attendance at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences.  The presentation was also streamed live via the club's Google + account and is available for viewing on the club's YouTube channel at http://youtu.be/x3EqklJbDCg.

The presentation covered many aspects of black holes
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December Meeting: NASA Launch Weather Forecasting

Speaker: Tony Rice

Our December meeting featured an excellent presentation on NASA Launch Weather Forecasting by local NASA Solar System Ambassador, Tony Rice. Astronomers obviously need clear night skies to get anything done and spend a lot of time studying weather forecasts of frontal boundaries, cloud cover, winds aloft and airmass moisture. To send a space mission on its way, NASA does all that and much more. Tony walked us through other weather factors that govern a launch such as temperature, lightening risk and where winds will carry debris and toxic materials in event of a disaster.

Tony Rice - Launch Weather Forecasting

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