Presentation at 6:30 p.m. (rain or shine) followed by outdoor viewing if weather allows.
Did you know that all stars, including our sun, produce antimatter? That some stars change their color or their brightness back and forth over days or months? Or that some stars in our sky have enough color for us to notice without a telescope? Come to the MSU-St. Andrews STEM center in Midland to learn more!
Families are invited to MSU in Midland for an evening of astronomy and observing. We will begin with a short (~ 1 hr) discussion about stars. We will cover what they are, how they work, how our understanding of them has grown over the years, what different kinds there are, and which types are easily visible in our sky. We will also include a brief update of some recent research on nearby stars. And, as always, we will show you how to find the planets and other bright objects that are currently in the sky this month.
Plus, if the clouds stay away, we will follow with an observing session using our fine collection of telescopes. Brilliant Venus is easily seen after sunset this month until about 8 PM. Uranus is visible with binoculars, and Mars shines in the morning sky, before sunrise. Since we will discuss stars during the presentation portion, we will take the opportunity to show you the different types of stars visible in our sky, including a special few that changed the history of science.
There are always other options to see on Astronomy and Telescope Night. This is a good time (winter and no moon) to view the Great Andromeda Galaxy—the furthest object visible with the naked eye! Many stars and constellations will also be visible from our St. Andrews site. We can help you learn to identify the brighter stars by name, as well as the brighter constellations. Also, there will be double stars, clusters, and other galaxies visible by binoculars or telescope. It all depends on what interests our attendees the most!
If skies are clear, we will follow with observing until about 8:30 PM. In case of clouds or bad weather, come anyway! We will still be offering the presentation on stars and what’s in the sky this month. Plus, we will try to answer any general astronomy questions you bring.