University of Hawaii Instutute for Astronomy
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IfA Publications

Maintained by LG

For immediate release
January 26, 2009


Ms. Mary Ann Kadooka
Institute for Astronomy
University of Hawaii at Manoa
Honolulu, Hawaii 96822

Mrs. Karen Rehbock
Assistant to the Director
Institute for Astronomy
University of Hawaii at Manoa



International Year of Astronomy 2009 Kickoff Event on Kauai

A lecture by Dr. Sanjay Limaye of the University of Wisconsin-Madison entitled “Unveiling Venus” will take place at Kauai Community College on Friday, January 30 at 6:30 p.m. in the Natural Science Building, room 110 to kickoff International Year of Astronomy events on Kauai.

In his lecture, Dr. Limaye will discuss what observers from Galileo through NASA missions have discovered about this cloud-shrouded planet and how Venus is similar to and different from Earth.

Following the lecture, there will be a star party that will include looking at Venus, as well as nebulae and star clusters, with telescopes.  IYA2009 marks the 400th anniversary of the first use of an astronomical telescope by Galileo Galilei. One of the things he discovered with his telescope is that Venus has phases, just like the moon.  Members of the Kauai Educational Association for Science and Astronomy will guide participants while they view the skies.  If it is cloudy or raining, it will still be possible to see the night sky by using Stellarium software in the KCC computer lab.

Equally exciting will be opportunity to actually do real-time remote observing via the Internet on the two-meter Faulkes Telescope North located at Haleakala Observatories on Maui.  Viewers will control the telescope and direct it to take images of galaxies, nebulae, and other astronomical bodies.  Faulkes Telescope North is part of the Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network.

Astronomers from around the world gathered in Paris on January 15 for the start of the International Year of Astronomy, a global effort initiated by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) to help the people throughout the world learn more about the day- and night-time sky.  Go to website for more information.

This event is sponsored by the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy and KCC.

Founded in 1967, the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii at Manoa conducts research into galaxies, cosmology, stars, planets, and the sun. Its faculty and staff are also involved in astronomy education, deep space missions, and in the development and management of the observatories on Haleakala and Mauna Kea.

Established in 1907 and fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, the University of Hawaii is the state's sole public system of higher education. The UH System provides an array of undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees and community programs on 10 campuses and through educational, training, and research centers across the state. UH enrolls more than 50,000 students from Hawaii, the U.S. mainland, and around the world.

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