IYA2009 Update

8 May 2009

United Nations support space science education

The UN Office for Outer Space Affairs has congratulated staff and students on the successful conclusion of the Sixth Postgraduate Course on Space and Atmospheric Science at the UN-affiliated Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Asia and the Pacific (CSSTEAP). The Course is a contribution to IYA2009, and emphasises the importance of education and research in astronomy and space science. Their official website is: http://www.cssteap.org/

2009: A year full of astronomical stamps!
IYA2009 promises to have a number of astronomy related items released. Especially so since the annual PostEurop EUROPA series (with its 40+ member agencies) has selected "Astronomy" as its theme. See the Philatelic Release Calendar here: http://www.astronomy2009.org/organisation/structure/taskgroups/philately/calendar/

Third Falakyati Mela in Okara, Pakistan
More than 1500 attendees, an hour of presentation and another for live lunar and planetary views, extremely enthusiastic students with their parents and teachers, very well organised and publicise, .and a wonderful host! This is the KSS' third Falakyati Mela in the city of Okara. Those who were there would agree that we will probably not see any better this whole year. Would you like to know more? http://www.umairasim.com/Index/Blog/Entries/2009/5/5_Third_Falakyati_Mela_in_Okara,_April_6,_2009..html

IYA2009 boosts GLOBE at Night to record number of dark-skies observations
The global citizen-science campaign GLOBE at Night 2009 recorded 80 percent more observations of the world's dark skies than the programme's previous record - including double the number of digital measurements - thanks in large part to active participation and publicity from the network of 140 countries currently celebrating IYA2009. More information is available here: http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/258/

Touching the Edge of the Universe world premiere
ESA will present the world premiere of Touching the Edge of the Universe, a stunning new planetarium show, starting 7 May 2009 at 30 planetaria in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The premiere comes just days before the launch of Herschel & Planck, two of the show's starring missions, scheduled for 14 May. Further information can be found here: http://www.planetariumshow.eu

Sand & Flower Festa 2009 in Japan themed after Galileo and IYA2009
The 22nd Sand & Flower Festa 2009 in Minamisatsuma is being held from 2-6 May at Fukiage Beach in Kagoshima Prefecture. The history of this festival dates back to 1987 when they planned to activate the city by making large sand sculptures using sand of Fukiage Beach. The size of the event has grown up to welcome 150 thousands visitors last year. The theme of sand sculptures is Galileo Galilei and the International Year of Astronomy 2009. This festival is one of the official events of IYA2009.

Seiichi Sakamoto, one of JAXA's bloggers on the Cosmic Diary was invited as a delegate of the IYA2009 Japan Committee and JAXA to give a public talk there. Read his post here: http://cosmicdiary.org/blogs/jaxa/seiichi_sakamoto/?p=378

The Sand & Flower Festa's official site is: http://www.sand-minamisatsuma.jp/index.htm

GalileoMobile is an itinerant science education project bringing the Year of Astronomy to young underprivileged people across South America, to foster a will of learning by exciting wonder about our Universe. Check out the official website: http://www.galileo-mobile.org/

U.S. former astronaut visits Malta to mark IYA2009
U.S. Senator and astronaut Harrison Schmitt has spent five busy days in Malta to mark IYA2009. Accompanied by his wife Teresa Fitzgibbon, he toured various schools and sixth forms and also appeared on a television programme Xarabank. To read more, visit: http://iya2009malta.page.tl/Astronaut-Geologist-Harrison-Schmitt,-Apollo-17-Lunar-Module-Pilot.htm

Cidadanias "Space and Time": an IYA2009 performance
Scale all life times into one hour.
The Universe, the Earth, a city, a man.
All in one hour. relative, parallel and metaphorical.

Would you understand things better?
Would you find solutions for a better society?

Our goal, as in the latest Cidadania works, is to join art and science and therefore just not question, as art does, but to propose solutions, as science does.

Specially written for the International Year of Astronomy 2009, more information can be found at: www.cidadania-darmstadt.info

Special Project: observing mutual phenomena of the Galilean satellites of Jupiter
In 2009, the equinox will occur on the planet Jupiter (a once every six year event), allowing observation from Earth of mutual occultations and eclipses between the Galilean satellites. We will take the opportunity of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 to encourage everyone to look at these satellites and to make astronomical observations. More information is available at: http://www.imcce.fr/hosted_sites/ama09/phemu09_en.html

ESConet workshop report
The final ESConet workshop report is now available here: http://www.astronomy2009.org/resources/documents/detail/Esconet_IYA2009_report/

StarPeace newsletter
For the latest information about the StarPeace project, be sure to visit: http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/267/

A CIRCLE OF PEACE: StarPeace builds bridges between four countries
To promote the universality of the heavens, astronomers from four countries across Asia held a simultaneous public stargazing party on the night of 1 May 2009, under the aegis of StarPeace. Visit the website here: http://www.starpeace.org/

London's National Portrait Gallery exhibits portraits of astronomers
Respected astronomers are getting the star treatment in London's National Portrait Gallery. Well-known stargazers will be featuring in the Portraits of Astronomers gallery, to celebrate IYA2009. The exhibition is running from 12 July 2009, in Room 38 a. For more information about Portraits of Astronomers and the National Portrait Gallery, please visit the official website: http://www.npg.org.uk/

The Sixth International Conference On The Inspiration of Astronomical Phenomena
The Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti, the Astronomy Department of Padua University, the INAF-Padua Astronomical Observatory, and the Vatican Observatory are jointly organising the sixth international conference on "The Inspiration of Astronomical Phenomena" (INSAP) to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Galileo's first astronomical uses of the telescope. The Conference will be held on 18-23 October 2009 at Palazzo Franchetti in Venice, Italy. To learn more, be sure to visit: http://www.astro.unipd.it/insap6/

Smithsonian Photography Initiative celebrates IYA2009
During May and June, the Smithsonian Photography Initiative offers three ways to celebrate both the International Year of Astronomy and the 400th anniversary of the first recorded astronomical observation with a telescope by Galileo Galilei. To get involved, go to: http://photography.si.edu/


Organisational Associates:

The International Year of Astronomy 2009 is endorsed by the United Nations and the International Council of Science.