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From: TerryMoselaol.com
Date: Fri, 15 Apr 2005 13:19:11 EDT
Subject: Observing tonight: good forecast!

Hi all,

Don't forget the two IAA events tonight & on Saturday night, as follows:

"Spring Moon & Planets at Castle Espie & Carnfunnock"

Come and see the 'highlights of the evening sky' at the Wildfowl & Wetlands 
Trust, Castle Espie, near Comber, Co Down, on Friday 15 April, and again on 
Saturday 16 April at Carnfunnock Country Park, Drains Bay, North of Larne, Co 
Antrim, through the powerful telescopes and binoculars of the Irish Astronomical 

If the sky is clear, this is what lies in store: Saturn, the most beautiful 
sight in the night sky, will be perfectly placed for viewing. See its 
magnificent Rings, and its largest, puzzling & fascinating moon Titan, recently visited 
by the Huyghens space craft.

Later, we'll see giant Jupiter, the largest planet in the Solar System, big 
enough to hold over 1,000 Earths! Also its four largest Moons, discovered by 
Galileo about 300 years ago.

Among the stellar jewels on display will be the beautiful Pleiades, or Seven 
Sisters, in Taurus. See how many you can count in high-power binoculars or a 
telescope -  not just seven, but maybe seventy, or more!

Not far away is Orion, the Mighty Hunter, the most magnificent constellation 
in the entire sky. See the brilliant white star Rigel, which is 50,000 times 
brighter than our Sun. And giant Red Betelgeuse, a star so big that if placed 
where our Sun is, it would engulf not just Mercury, and Venus, and Earth, but 
almost the next planet, Mars, as well! Below the three stars forming Orion's 
Belt, you can see the Orion Nebula, a gigantic cloud of gas and dust where stars 
like our Sun are being formed right now!

See the amazing Andromeda Galaxy, the big brother of our own Milky Way 
galaxy: a vast horde of two hundred thousand million stars, at the incredible 
distance of about 14 million million million miles!

Much closer to home, we'll have a spectacular First Quarter Moon: an 
incredible sight in a good telescope, with hundreds of gigantic craters, mountains, 
valleys, and giant plains.

We'll also have superb star shows in a mobile planetarium, telescopes on 
display, talks about the universe and the night sky, an exhibition of amazing 
photos of the wonders of the sky, a collection of meteorites from space, and you 
can meet the Ulsterman who has been in zero-gravity, and flown almost to the 
edge of space, and who has booked on the next available commercial flight into 
space! So there will be plenty to see and do even if it's cloudy.

Remember: wrap up really warm, particularly head, hands & feet!

Light Refreshments available at both venues

Gates open from 7.30pm.

Clear skies,

Terry Moseley


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