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Observatory Session Set

MARCH 4, 2005--The UW-River Falls physics department is offering free, public observatory viewings from 8 to 10 p.m. March 14-17 in Centennial Science Hall.

The first set of viewings with begin with a discussion by physics Professor Eileen Korenic, "Lord of the Rings: The Latest from the Cassini-Huygens Mission to Saturn," held in Room 271 of Centennial Science Hall.

Other observatory sessions scheduled for spring are April 4-7 and May 2-5 from 9 to 11 p.m.
Each observatory session may include a planetarium show or introductory talk by Korenic, who will highlight a recent astronomical news item or provide an in-depth look at one or more of the objects visible that night.

All observatory viewings are scheduled on clear nights only, Monday-Thursday.

For daily weather updates, call 715/425-3560 or visit

The UW-RF Observatory houses a 16-inch Meade computer-controlled LX200GPS Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope, which arrived in October 2003. The physics department also owns two 12-inch Meade LX200 telescopes that are usually mounted on the observing deck during public stargazing sessions.

Viewers can expect to see a selection of deep sky objects, such as galaxies, nebulae and star clusters. Saturn, one of the most impressive sights of all, will be the only prominent moon or planet of our solar system to be seen above the horizon during the upcoming sessions.

It is often best to arrive sometime after the start of an observing session to avoid waiting in line. In addition to the main telescope under the dome, one or two smaller telescopes will be set up on the observing deck.

A physics department faculty member, student or guest astronomer will staff each telescope and be available to answer any questions. Observers are encouraged to stay and look at as many elements as possible and feel free to request personal observing targets.

Since the dome is unheated and the observing deck is outside in the open air, guests are advised to dress appropriately for the weather.


Last updated: Tuesday, 22-Jun-2010 16:21:20 Central Daylight Time

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