Tuesday, September 22, 2009

JPPS explore the night sky

In line with the IYA2009 celebration, the JPPS began a stargazing series entitled

Exploring the Hidden Wonders of the Night Sky.

The idea is taken from IYA's theme "The Universe, Yours to Discover," in which the JPPS will allow first time telescope users to see what they usually don't see at night.

Most of the first time users have not even seen the milky way on a clear dark night, nor have they seen the satellites of planets, the galaxies and nebulae (items listed in the NGC).

The first session was welcomed with scattered rain showers and technical problems, but this did not discourage the JPPS from pushing through with the activity. The 8 inch celestron reflector (Celestron 8) of the physics department had molds growing on the lens due to improper storage, and therefore could not be used. We ended up using the Firstscope 114C reflector in observing. After a few hours,we were graced to observe Jupiter and its moons. We viewed Jupiter through a 10mm and 25mm eyepiece.

We hope the rainy weather won't continue for future stargazing sessions.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Going Bonkerz on Celestia

During the Founder's day celebration of Silliman University, I spent about a week explaining astronomy in the physics booth with the use of Celestia. We won over-all booth champion twice when this program was used(3 years participating, no celestia for 2008). Everyone loves to observe the space simulation, especially with the help of a projector (yeah, thanks Rosette!).

I decided to visit shatters.net for updates of the program, and I saw features that were in my version that I haven't explored. I began thinkering about with the program for two hours, and whoa, did i enjoy!

Before I download all the add ons that I can get perhaps I'll do another review for the Philippine Journal of Astronomy - this time on the Celestia software.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

IYA2009 Philippine Olympiad

The National Organizing Commitee of the IYA2009, in cooperation with UP NISMED, will be holding the first IYA2009 Philippine Olympiad. The Olympiad is open to both secondary and collegiate level, both competing in their respective levels. The Olympiad will be conducted in two stages: a regional and a national.

The regional eliminations will be held simultaneously in 17 regions of the country. The eliminations has been postponed to November 7. The finals will be held at UP-NISMED, Quezon City on 11 December 2009

You can download the registration form here:

For more details visit the IYA2009 Philippines Official Website.

For queries please contact Dr. Merle C. Tan, Director of UP-NISMED and Chairperson of the IYA2009 Olympiad at telephone numbers 981-8500 loc. 3901 to 3910, 927-4276 and 928-1563 or through olympiad@astronomy2009.ph.