Event: Sky-Watch (Involving telescopic viewing of Saturn, Moon, Venus, Orion Nebula)
Date: 24th February 2007
Time: Lasted from 6PM to 8PM
Venue: Poorna Prajna Education Centre, Sadashivanagar, Bangalore - 80.
1. About 100 students from classes VII through X assembled for the event
2. The event was conducted with the help of volunteers from BAS, enthusiastic students from Poorna Prajna Education Centre and Teachers from the institution.
3. The event involved a brief introduction to the night sky followed by telescopic observations of Saturn, Moon, Venus and Orion Nebula. The students were encouraged to observe various subtle features of the objects.
And the story...
It started with setting up one Mr. Sreekar's 4-inch newtonian reflector telescope on the terrace of Poorna Prajna Education Centre, even before the teachers appeared at the location. Shashank and I adjusted the telescope while some excited students were peering over the telescope. We started off by looking at the moon. Much later, the school's telescope arrived, thanks to some student-volunteers. Shashank and I set up the school's 8" Newtonian Reflector and pointed to Venus. Very soon, students started gathering. A brief introduction the session was presented while the students were shown to identify Venus and Saturn. The students were also prompted to observe the surface features of the moon close to the meridian, the rings of Saturn and their shadow on Saturn, Saturn's moon Titan, and the gibbous phase of Venus. The students then queued up for the telescopes. We maintained the telescopes' tracking manually. There were some very enthusiastic students who asked interesting questions. The teachers also enjoyed the sight of Saturn. Saturn was the pick of the night! Towards the end, we pointed to Orion Nebula with the 8" telescope. It looked amazingly good for a light polluted site!!! The skies were marvellous! Most of the students were able to notice the cloud of gas surrounding the star. The session ended at around 8:00 PM.
A great experience overall ! I'm sure our ties with Poorna Prajna will continue and we'll have more of these sessions.