Longmont Astronomical Society


Upcoming events

September 2022 Newsletter

View this month's astrophotography and catch up on the latest club news. For earlier editions, check out the newsletter archives.



Monthly Meeting

The James Webb Space Telescope:

Promises Delivered

by Dr. Gregory Wirth

Thursday, October 20, 2022 at 7pm

Location: Zoom-only (email invite)

Summary

Why was a "magic metal" key to designing the powerful new James Webb Space Telescope? How did scientists focus the optics after launch? And what amazing discoveries are astronomers making now that Webb is fully operational and returning fantastic new images to us almost daily? In this presentation, hear local expert Greg Wirth explain how engineers designed Webb's mirrors, what was involved in turning 18 separate mirror segments into a single telescope, and what scientists are learning from the data.


About the Speaker

Dr. Gregory Wirth is an astronomer and systems engineer at Boulder-based Ball Aerospace.  Since clear nights were a rarity growing up in cloudy and light-polluted central Michigan, Greg was blown away the first time he saw the night skies in Colorado as a teen.  He earned his Ph.D. in Astronomy & Astrophysics at the University of California, Santa Cruz and spent sixteen years as a Support Astronomer at the W. M. Keck Observatory on Mauna Kea in Hawaii. Prior to joining Ball in 2018, Greg served as the Commissioning Scientist for the Boulder-based National Ecological Observatory Network.  At Ball, he has supported the Roman Space Telescope program and spent last winter commuting from Boulder to Baltimore as a member of the Wavefront Science Team responsible for commissioning the optical systems on the James Webb Space Telescope.  He lives in Longmont and plans his bike rides around the best snack stops.

If you are not a member and would like to join our next meeting,

Contact via email and we'll send you an invitation.

View previous LAS meeting presenters

Resources

Tonight's Sky

The Space Telescope Science Institute gives a quick look at the constellations you can see each month.

For Teachers

Visit our Educational and Community Outreach page for Science Project ideas, websites specifically for students, and more.

Astro Calendar 

A day-by-day schedule of what will be visible in the night sky, along with links to detailed explanations.

What's Up

This video from NASA shows you skywatching highlights for each month.

For Kids

Peppa finds herself getting into all kinds of learning adventures. Join her on this one where she learns about stars.

Observing the Night Sky

This section of our Astronomy Resources page offers information to help you plan for a night of stargazing.

Thanks for visiting our website!

If you've found these resources helpful, considering becoming a member or donating today.

Membership in the LAS is open to all people of any age. We offer Student and Individual memberships.

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You can donate to the general fund or our telescope fund. Telescope and equipment donations are also appreciated!

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The Longmont Astronomical Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. P.O. Box 806, Longmont, CO 80502-0806, USA

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