Saturday, February 20, 2010

Exoplanet Hunting Techniques!

Summer Ash gave an amazing talk last night entitled: "Galactic Planet Hunting." She discussed the different techniques astronomers are using to find planets outside of our solar system, from looking at the wobble of the planet's host star, to looking at the drop of light that occurs when a planet eclipses its host star, and finally to looking for the planet directly. Additionally, we gave away some NASA swag, we had the 3D wall show and a flythrough the Solar System, and we had a few slideshows (Astronomy Picture of the Day and the discovery of water on the Moon).

Unfortunately, the weather was uncooperative. It was clear when the lecture began but quickly became totally overcast for the observing period. However, we were able to give several groups of people a tour of the telescopes along with some history and background as to how they work.

Thanks to the 100 attendees and several volunteer graduate students!


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