IYA2009 Updates

Less of Our Light for More Star Light

9 March 2010

Over 3700 Globe at Night measurements from around the world so far! Help us reach 10,000 by March 16.

With half of the world’s population now living in cities, many urban dwellers have never experienced the wonderment of pristinely dark skies and maybe never will. Light pollution is obscuring people’s long-standing natural heritage to view stars.  The GLOBE at Night program is an international citizen-science campaign to raise public awareness of the impact of light pollution by encouraging everyone everywhere to measure local levels of night sky brightness and contribute observations online to a world map.  All it takes is a few minutes to participate between 8–10 pm, March 3–16.  Your measurements will make a world of difference.  For more information, visit the Web site at www.globeatnight.org

Interview with Robert Naeye, Editor-in-Chief of Sky & Telescope

9 March 2010

The 365 Days of Astronomy podcast has featured an interview with Robert Naeye, Editor-in-Chief of Sky & Telescope magazine, an IYA2009 Media Partner. He talks about amateur astronomy, its past and future.

Hear the interview here: http://365daysofastronomy.org/2010/03/07/march-7th-robert-naeye-of-sky-telescope/

A longer version of the interview is hosted on Slacker Astronomy: http://www.slackerastronomy.org/shows/100307-sa.mp3

Upcoming tribute to the late Arthur C Clarke

9 March 2010

19 March 2010 marks the 2nd year death anniversary of late Sir Arthur Clarke. It is hard to imagine we have already made two orbits around the Sun without his presence. Of course his contributions still lives on and will continue to do so. As a tribute to him, the Sri Lanka Astronomical Association in partnership with Arthur C Clarke Estate and the British Council has organised an event for 17 March. This will feature, among other things, an illustrated talk by Arthur C Clarke's research assistant, a question and answer session, and a screening of the film 2010: The Year We Make Contact.


Date: Wednesday, 17 March 2010
Time: From 4.00 pm onwards

Venue: British Council Auditorium (49, Alfred House Gardens, Colombo 3)

Admission is free. Prior registration required. Please reserve your seat earlier as possible by contacting SLAA General Secretary Thilina Heenatigala on 0716 245 545 or thilina.heenatigala@yahoo.com

Hubble's 20th Anniversary brings special opportunity for European science centres and planetariums

8 March 2010

This April will mark 20 years in orbit for the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope! In honour of this incredible milestone, ESA, along with American partners NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) will offer a limited number of high-quality large Hubble prints to selected European science centres and planetariums. Click on the link below for more information and to sign up for this exciting opportunity.


Hubble 20th Anniversary page/anniversary image campaign

Beyond IYA2009 shop now taking orders

8 March 2010

Demand for Beyond IYA2009 logo-adorned items has resulted in the creation of a shop specifically tailored to cater for those who wish to express their support of continuing astronomy popularisation.

The Cafe Press site boasts a wide range of products, from Dark T-Shirts to Women's Dark T-Shirts. Descriptions and instructions are included on the site. For example, research the rugged Beach Tote and you will be advised to "Take it outside."

Other items available include a Large Mug, a Mug, a Ceramic Travel Mug, and a Stackable Mug Set (4 mugs). You can even buy a t-shirt for an organic woman. As you enter your card details, be assured that each financial transaction is helping to fund Beyond IYA2009 projects.

To splash out on all these items, and more, please visit: http://www.cafepress.com/beyondiya2009

International Women’s Day: science's talents celebrated on AthenaWeb

8 March 2010

Together with the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science programme AthenaWeb would like to take the opportunity of this International Women’s Day to celebrate the major contributions of women scientists by featuring the videos of  the five laureates of the 2010 For Women In Science awards. 

For the past twelve years, L’Oréal and UNESCO have taken the initiative to bring together women whose research contributes to changing the world. These top-ranking scientists embrace global challenges ranging from health and the environment to social actions, and represent the key to the future.

"Through its Awards, the partnership highlights women of excellence and creates role models for young women around the world. This is brilliantly illustrated by our two Laureates who were awarded Nobel Prizes this year." says Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO. "Through international and national scholarships, the programme also encourages young women on all continents to pursue scientific careers and make their dreams come true. This partnership promotes not only women. By highlighting the role women must play in scientific research, the programme emphasises the importance of science as a source of progress."

Recently, Professors Elizabeth Blackburn and Ada Yonath, both 2008 Laureates of the L’Oréal-UNESCO Awards For Women in Science, were awarded the Nobel Prize, in Medicine and Chemistry respectively. Recognition of the scientific excellence of these women by such a prestigious institution provides enormous encouragement for the future of the L’Oréal Foundation and UNESCO partnership.

Watch the 2010 Laureates’ videos on AthenaWeb: http://www.athenaweb.org/programs/index.php?search_keywords=FWS&go.x=10&go.y=6&go=Search&searchIn=search_videos&page=list&results=100000&type=and&search=1

More information on the 2010 For Women in Science Laureates: http://www.agora.forwomeninscience.com/

ISU’s 14th Annual International Symposium "The Public Face of Space" resources are online

6 March 2010

Resources from the recent symposium "The Public Face of Space" are now online. These include the programme of events, copies of the 48 presented papers, additional manuscripts, copies of the 26 posters, compressed video files of the keynote address and the panel discussions at the end of each session, and a full list of participants. Later additions will include a selection of photos and summaries of brief questions and answers that followed the presented papers.

A DVD containing all of this material will be produced but in limited numbers only this year. As the full content of this DVD is being made available online, and as it may be some time before the DVDs are available, it is anticipated that only some people will wish to receive a copy. In order to limit the effort and expenditure, would any registered participants reply to symposium14@isu.isunet.edu if you want to be included in the order list, adding the full postal address to which it should be sent.

For more information, and to see the online resources, please visit: http://www.isunet.edu/Online_Files/Programs/Symposium/2010

Explore our Universe with the University College London

5 March 2010


UCL is running a series of free events for schools, families and the general public on 12, 13 and 14 March 2010 as part of the UK's National Science and Engineering Week. These include seeing how scientists are advancing our knowledge, holding rocks older than our planet, building scale Solar System models, using telescopes, and learning about careers in astronomy.

For details, visit: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/youruniverse/

IYA2009 Updates

5 March 2010

IYA2009 Galilean Nights award winners announced!

The IYA2009 Cornerstone project Galilean Nights ran during October 2009 and saw thousands of individuals and organisations host a wide range of events to popularise astronomy and highlight the importance of Galileo's legacy. Now that event reports have been collated the Galilean Nights awards can be announced. There are six categories, each with a winner and two highly commended entries. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/829/

Global Astronomy Month Update

Registrations for GAM are now open! Those who are planning to take part in Global Astronomy Month this April can now register their events at: http://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/index.php/projects/global-astronomy-month/events.html

Once registered, make sure your event bears the GAM fingerprints. You can find several promotional products with the GAM logo at: http://www.cafepress.com/gamawb

Stay in touch with the latest from GAM Starting this week, GAM has a weekly newsletter with all the updates on projects and events. Subscribe to be in touch with the progress of one of the largest outreach programmes this year: http://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/index.php/projects/global-astronomy-month/news/newsletter.html

At the same time, the newsletter is a tool for sharing ideas. If you have news about your GAM activities that you would like the world to know about, send them to info@gam-awb.org

Clockwork Skies digital planetarium show free to download and use

Participants of the Spring 2010 Blender Production Workshop were set a challenging task: develop their own skills by creating an immersive fulldome planetarium show under very strict time limits. The result is the entertaining yet informative show Clockwork Skies. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/830/


She is an Astronomer conference

Celebrating success and seeking solutions

Date: 22 and 23 April 2010

Venue: Royal Astronomical Society, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, UK

To celebrate the ending of the IYA2009 Cornerstone Project "She is an Astronomer", a conference is being held in London. The conference will be opened by Prof Jocelyn Bell Burnell. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/828/


Careers in Astronomy

The IAU has published a new theme about Careers in Astronomy: http://www.iau.org/public/careers/


Bareket Observatory brings cutting-edge science education within reach

Bareket Observatory (Israel) introduces teachers and students from around the country to other colleagues from all over the globe and provides them with the scaffolding to perform research projects in their classroom. Students are participating at the projects by using the observatory's on-line activities and completing observations on its state of the art remote internet telescope, analysing the data and interpreting their results. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/826/


Galileo Teacher Training Program: deadline extended

The Galileo Teacher Training Program has decided to extend the deadline of the call for proposals to 25 March 2010. More information: http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/768/


First Light: Photography & Astronomy exhibition

First Light: Photography & Astronomy will be held at the Huis Marseille Museum for Photography in Amsterdam between 6 March and 30 May 2010. It will comprise a first-time combination of unique historical astronomy photographs, from Dutch collections, and present-day images made by famous telescopes and space probes such as ESO, Hubble and Cassini. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/824/


Space Education and Outreach Symposium call for abstracts

Space Education and Outreach Symposium at this year’s International Astronautical Congress is taking place in Prague at the end of September. This symposium deals with activities, methods and techniques for formal and informal space education at different educational levels, space outreach to the general public, space workforce development, etc. Each of the sessions in the symposium features an invited key note speaker followed by presentation of selected papers. Symposium sessions may also include panel discussions. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/823/


March issue of Practical Astronomy magazine is available to download for free

Practical Astronomy is a new magazine, distributed for free by means of digital download from the internet. The magazine is published by Structure Ltd (a UK registered company) in PDF format, making it readable and printable by most computers in the World. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/820/


Help to collect stories about the stars

The project "The Sky of our grandparents" involves the general public, in particular ancient people and rural and isolated populations, in collecting traditional stories in order to discover old myths and ancient knowledge of astronomy before they become lost. http://www.astronomy2009.org/news/updates/821/


Hubble resources ready to use

The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies has compiled a list of Hubble Space Telescope related resources to aid in the popularisation of astronomy and space education. The highlights of these resources have been listed on a single webpage. Examples include exploring the history of the telescope from Galileo to today, spacewalks, servicing missions, and IMAX ® Hubble 3D. To see the list, and for additional information, please visit: http://topstars.strategies.org/resources.html


Global Astronomy Month Update

5 March 2010

Registrations for GAM are now open! Those who are planning to take part in Global Astronomy Month this April can now register their events at: http://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/index.php/projects/global-astronomy-month/events.html

Once registered, make sure your event bears the GAM fingerprints. You can find several promotional products with the GAM logo at: http://www.cafepress.com/gamawb

Stay in touch with the latest from GAM Starting this week, GAM has a weekly newsletter with all the updates on projects and events. Subscribe to be in touch with the progress of one of the largest outreach programs this year:http://www.astronomerswithoutborders.org/index.php/projects/global-astronomy-month/news/newsletter.html

At the same time, the newsletter is a tool for sharing ideas. If you have news about your GAM activities that you would like the world to know about, send them to info@gam-awb.org

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Organisational Associates:

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