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FAU Astronomical Observatory -- Front Page
Welcome to the Observatory's Front Page. Included here are some of the latest news and articles that may be of interest to our visitors. General observatory information, such as location and maps, viewing schedules, Events Calendar, contact information, student class credits, parking and other general information, can be found on the "About the Observatory" page.
We also have a growing coverage about the issue of light pollution, what it is, what it does to the environment, to ourselves, to our wallets and resources, to our security and safety, to the majestic wonders of the night sky and what YOU can do about it. This is a man made problem that is prepetuated by a lack of awareness and is something that we all can correct.
The Front Page
News of the Observatory
Apr. 21st & 28th The Observatory will swap its Tuesdays' night observation and public viewing schedules. The public viewing session normally held on the thrid Tuesday, Apr. 21st, will instead be held on the 28th, so that students taking the Intro. to Astronomy class will have one more chance to receive for their credit before the final exams begin. This is a one time change for this event, and the regular schedule will resume the next week.
General Sky Conditions
Solar conditions, atmospheric phenomena and news are reported by www.SpaceWeather.com.
The current sky conditions of Boca Raton are found via the Clear Sky Clock:
Basic weather conditions for our area are at www.wunderground.com forecast for Boca Raton, while our astronomically important current cloud cover conditions can be found at www.wunderground.com for Boca Raton.
The Sun currently appears in the constellation Pisces' realm. Gets passed by Mercury
on Apr. the 10th and enters Aries the ram on Apr. 19th. It then enters Taurus's the bull's realm on
the 15th of May. Passing by Mars on June the 4th and entering Gemini on June 22nd.
Mercury currently appears in the morning in the constellation of Pisecs as it approaches the Sun for a superior conjunction on Apr. 10th. After then, look for it to appear in the evening skies.
Venus is in the boundaries of Taurus the bull. She'll appear just under 2.5° away from Messier 45, the Pleiades on April 11th. Then she'll continue on into Gemini on May the 8th, then appearing just over 1.5° away from the open cluster Messier 35.
Mars is in Ares the ram, and appears ever dimmer as he occupys the far side of the solar system from us. Mercury will appear to buzz by him on April 22nd. The old warrior will enter Taurus on May 3rd and then the Sun itself will pass him during their conjunction on June 14th. Afterwards, expect to see him on the flip side of the night in the eastern morning hours.
Jupiter, rising around 1510 EDT, has resumed prograde motion. Jupiter will reenter Leo on June the 8th and on June the 20th will appear in a nice triangle with a cresent Moon and Venus. On June the 30th look for Jupiter and Venus to appear about 1/3° apart from each other! A sight that is not to be missed!
Saturn currently rises just after midnight, with a brightness at mv = 0.44. It currently appears near ν Scorpii before dawn in the eastern skies. appearing almost as if part of the archinid's head stars. It will enter Libra on May the 2th. It will have its opposition on May the 23rd.
Uranus is slowly advancing through Pisces. Uranus will appear with the fish until Apr. 28th, 2018! Its opposition will occur on Oct. 12th.
Neptune is currently just under 2° north and east of Sigma Aquarii in the morning skies. It will get as close as 2° to λ Aquarii when it starts its retrograde, reaching opposition on Sept. 1st. It will reside in Aquarius until 2022.
Florida Earth Festival 2015
Florida Earth Festival 2015 is a celebration of the people, policies, products, and services that are moving us toward sustainability. Florida Earth Festival is about building a better world and having fun doing it! It will take place from April 18th through April 25th, and will include many affiliated events around the county.
Their second annual Earth Day Fair occurs at:
This year's various lineup of earth-conscious and sustainable living vendors, products, and speakers has something for everyone! Such as:
Gardeners will delight in attending discussions by George Irwin, the creator of the Green Wall and Edible Wall, and Dr. John Zahina-Ramos, author of Just One Backyard: One Man's Search for Food Sustainability. Jazzercise with classes by the Earth Music Stage, and stay to hear Sol Republic, Liddy Clark and many other exciting performers!
Kids and adults of all ages will enjoy hourly storytelling by Eco Stars Club for Kids, and The Great Cloth Diaper Change 2015: an attempt to get into the Guinness Book of World Records for the most babies changed into cloth diapers in an internationally coordinated event on Saturday morning!
Learn how neighboring cities, Boca Raton and Delray Beach, are collaborating to support environmental efforts! Learn how the City of Delray Beach is acting responsibly to respond to sea level rise and working with residents in areas that flood with tides.
For more information call 561-880-0510 or visit their webpage at:
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Florida Atlantic University
Boca Raton, Florida
E-mail: vandernoot at sci dot fau dot edu
Phone: 561 297 STAR (7827)
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