Public Observing Nights, school tours and Open House events have been very successful in the past year and a half. As a result of our Spring Public Nights and quite a number of daytime school tours, we are fast approaching 2300 visitors!
Schedule of Public Observing Nights for the Summer
Saturday, 5 July at 9:30 PM
Saturday, 19 July at 9:30 PM
Saturday, 2 August at 9:00 PM (note earlier start time)
Saturday, 16 August at 8:30
PM (note earlier start time)
All observing sessions will begin with a short
introductory talk in room ASE 2016 on the ground floor of the new
extension to the Arts & Science building. We will then go up to
the observatory and viewing with the telescope (if it is clear). If it is overcast, a longer talk will precede
a tour of the observatory and display area.
No reservations are necessary, and there is no admission charge. The space in the dome is limited; no more than 18
people can be accommodated for observing at a time, so there may be some
waiting if there is a crowd! Parents are
encouraged to bring their children, however unaccompanied children will not be
admitted. (Note that the tour is not
suitable for young children; please do not bring children
The objects we view will depend on the weather
and what is "up", because the sky changes not only during the night,
but with the seasons as well! July 5th and August 2nd
will be good for the 1st quarter Moon. Saturn will be visible all summer, Mars will
be better for the July dates, and we may glimpse Pluto on August 16th! Other interesting objects might include double
stars, star clusters, and perhaps a galaxy.
observatory is equipped with an elevator for accessibility. Please
notify us if you require its use.
More information is available on the observatory website:
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to be put on our "First Notice" Observatory email list
, contact us
with your email address. You'll be the first to know about observing opportunities with the telescope an any special activities we are planning.
Several important points:
Dress for being outside! The observatory dome is not heated (or cooled) and is open to the outside, so you should dress appropriately. (Note that even in the summer, nights can get chilly.)
Space in the dome is limited. No more than 18 people can be accommodated for observing at a time, so there may be some waiting if there is a crowd! Parents are encouraged to bring children, but unaccompanied children will not be admitted. (Note that the evening tour is not suitable for children under 7; please do not bring them.)
If it is a clear evening, inside the dome will be dark, to enable viewing at the telescope. Please be considerate of others in the group: do not take flash photos or operate your cell phone. There is usually an opportunity to take photos of the telescope after the tour.
The telescope cannot see through clouds, so on overcast nights there will be no observing. There will however, be a longer presentation and tour of the observatory, telescope and display area.
You wiil not see anything like a Hubble image through the Grenfell telescope. Two important reasons are that the Hubble telescope has 16 times more light-collecting area and is above the light-dimming and distorting atmosphere, but mainly because your eyes cannot store up light the way a camera can. Most of the incredible colour astronomical pictures that you see on TV and in magazines come from telescope cameras that store the incoming light for tens of minutes to hours, add together multiple images, then process the result for maximum effect. Hubble Space Telescope is also above Earth's light-absorbing and distorting atmosphere. But when you look through the eyepiece of the Grenfell telescope your eyes will see the VERY LIGHT that has traveled from the planets or stars or galaxies - it has not been processed!