All events are free and open to the public.  Outdoor events are subject to cancellation or postponement due to to weather–check our Facebook or Twitter feed to get the latest scheduling updates.

April 1, 2019
  • VAS Monthly Meeting

    April 1, 2019  7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
    Brownell Library, 6 Lincoln St, Essex Junction, VT 05452, USA

    Free and Open to the Public

    2 mini-talks

    Sydney Observatory 
    by Al Boudreau

    The Sydney Observatory was an essential institution dedicated to southern-hemisphere astronomy and accurate timekeeping. Today it is used as an astronomy outreach to help visitors appreciate astronomy and actually use their large telescope to discover the wonders of astronomy. This talk will give you a visit to the observatory and an appreciation of its contribution to Astronomy.

     **** And ****

    Using a Planisphere
    by Paul Walker

     Planispheres are practically indispensable. They are used by beginner and advanced amateurs alike. They are computers but . Planispheres are analog computers that require no power cords or batteries.
    They can answers the questions: “What is in the sky tonight?” and “When is the best time to observe a particular object?”. And so much more.

    You input a date and time and they output the location of the stars. Or input the part of the sky that holds a particular object you want to observe and the planisphere will output a list of suitable dates and times.

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May 6, 2019
  • VAS Annual Banquet & Business Meeting

    May 6, 2019  6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
    St. John's Club, 9 Central Ave, Burlington, VT 05401, USA

    Not open to the general public, but if you want to be an invited guest please contact us.

    If you are having the meal, choices are Turkey with all the fixings or Veggie Lasagna. Paul Walker will send out RSVP’s in April. The meal is $25 at the door, no charge if not eating.

    There will be a silent auction to raise money for the club. If you have items to donate to the cause, let us know ahead of time.

    Elections this year are for President, Vice President and the 4 Board Members at Large. Any full member interested in any of these positions please contact any of the board members listed at the end of the newsletter.

    Location: St. Johns Club, 9 Central Ave. South Burlington (take Lakeside Ave from Pine St.)
    Social Hour 6-7. Dinner 7-8. Door prizes, awards, annual business meeting 8-9.

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June 3, 2019
  • VAS Monthly Meeting

    June 3, 2019  7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
    Brownell Library, 6 Lincoln St, Essex Junction, VT 05452, USA

    Free and Open to the Public

    2 mini-talks

    Yerkes Observatory 
    The beginning of the “Big Eyes in the Sky” for George Ellery Hale and me 
    By Cale Shipman

    The 40 inch refractor is the largest and last Alvan Clark telescope ever build. It is housed in an observatory that can only be described as a national treasure. Located near Lake Geneva, Wisconsin and currently under threat of destruction.

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    Refiguring the Patterson 14.5” Mirror 
    By Robert Horton

    In this mini-talk we will explore the techniques that were used to refigure a medium sized Newtonian telescope mirror using both traditional Foucault testing as well as the latest advances in amateur interferometric analysis. First, we will walk through the various means by which we can measure the mirror to compare it to the desired shape and then we will see how to utilize that information to drive the refiguring steps needed to bring the mirror to that goal.

    Example instruments of both a Foucault tester and a Bath interferometer will be shown and the process through which their measurements are made will be demonstrated and the pros and cons of each method will be explained. In the end, the precise shape of the mirror will be known and the expected performance can be simulated. Hopefully, when the mirror is installed at the HOS (aka GMO) sometime this spring, the actual performance will match these simulations.

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