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The April 2016
President's Report
from Olaf Lutz...

New and Noteworthy:

  All members and public are welcome to attend any or all of the following planned events:

Tues April 26/16 (KELOWNA)
- 18:00 - DINNER – Asian Pear Restaurant (2050 Harvey, Kelowna)
Contact: Colleen O’Hare: chohare@shaw.ca
(Room C-272 NOTE: this room is different from other monthly meetings)
Main Presentation: James Edgar – “Synthesis of Elements in Stars”
Questions and Answers

Wed April 27/16 (VERNON)
- 16:30 – DINNER – BX Creek Bar & Grill (Vernon Atrium Hotel, formerly Best Western). Anyone wishing to join in please contact James ASAP so that he can make reservations
Contact: Jim Kanester: jameskanester@yahoo.ca
- 18:30 – VERNON OC-RASC MEETING (Heritage Hall, Vernon Science Centre)
Shawn Berglund: “Astrophotography”
Observing Challenges or photographing Virgo Supercluster Galaxies
Introduction of James Edgar

Thanks to Hugh Pett for posting this:
New NASA Web Portal Shines Beacon on Rising Seas
Sea level rise is a critical global issue affecting millions across our planet. A new Web portal developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, gives researchers, decision makers and the public alike a resource to stay up to date with the latest developments and scientific findings in this rapidly advancing field of study.
The portal, "Sea Level Change: Observations from Space," is online at:
The portal's key features include:
-- "Understanding Sea Level," a summary of decades of scientific research that has shaped our knowledge of sea level rise: its causes, including a warming, expanding ocean and melting ice on land; projections of future sea level rise; and ways in which humanity might adapt, largely drawn from NASA data.
-- An interactive data analysis tool, launching in mid-2016, that will allow direct access to NASA datasets on sea level. Users will be able to manipulate these datasets to automatically generate charts, graphs and maps of sea surface height, temperature and other factors. The analysis tool will also allow users to make forecasts of future conditions, as well as "hindcasts" -- retroactive calculations of past trends and conditions.
-- News highlights and feature stories with strong visual elements that explore the findings of sea level researchers in detail.
-- An extensive library of published papers on sea level-related topics, hyperlinked to individual citations throughout "Understanding Sea Level."
-- A multimedia section with dynamic still and video imagery, and a glossary of sea level terms.
-- A "frequently asked questions" section maintained by sea level scientists. Users can submit questions to scientists and data managers.
The website is optimized for most mobile devices, including smartphones and tablets.
"Sea Level Change: Observations from Space" is managed by a team led by JPL scientist Carmen Boening. The team is part of the NASA Sea Level Change Team research group.
"With sea levels rising globally, as observed by satellites over the past decades, sea level change is a hot topic in climate research," Boening said. "This new tool provides a NASA resource for researchers and a wealth of information for members of the public seeking a deeper understanding of sea level
For more information on NASA's Earth science activities, visit:
JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

Upcoming Meetings:

Vernon: Wednesday, April 27
The Vernon meeting will also feature a visit by National President James Edgar. The meeting will begin at 6.30pm and will feature a presentation by Shawn Berglund on Astrophotography.
Member Jim Kanester will present an Observing Challenge for May featuring observing and photographing the Virgo Supercluster Galaxies.
The meeting will be in the Heritage Hall on the corner next to the Okanagan Science Centre on the east side of Polson Park just off Highway 6.
*** Prior to the meeting at 4.30pm there will be a No-Host Dinner with James Edgar at the BX Creek Bar & Grill (Vernon Atrium Hotel, formerly Best Western). Please contact Jim Kanester if you wish to attend (jameskanester@yahoo.ca)

Kelowna: Tuesday, April 26
Members of all three meeting groups are invited to the special meeting to hear a main presentation by James Edgar on 'Synthesis of Elements in Stars', followed by a question and answer period.
The meeting will be held at 7:30pm in Room C-272 at the Okanagan College Kelowna. (Please note this is a different meeting room from the regular monthly meetings.)
*** Prior to the meeting at 6.00pm there will be a No-Host Dinner with James Edgar at the Asian Pear Restaurant (2050 Harvey Ave, Kelowna). Please contact Colleen O'Hare if you wish to attend (chohare@shaw.ca).

Penticton: Friday, April 22
Special Observing Event
The objective of the meeting will be observing Jupiter’s Galilean Moons. The gathering will take place at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory at White Lake... directions: http://www.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/eng/about/directions/penticton.html The evening will begin at 7.15pm with a presentation explaining Occultations and Eclipses of Jupiter's Moons. Following this, members will be invited to use their own binoculars or telescope for a Hands-on Observing Session featuring a Transit by Europa.
The meeting will begin at 7.15pm at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory at White Lake.

Astronomical Picture of the Month:
  For the April Picture of the Month selection, Mark Force went solo since fellow Selection Committee member Sharon Carter was out of web contact on an Easter visit. Her earlier comments were considered however, as well as the insights of 'The Oracle of Peachland' (Mark's wife Anita) who has assisted in the past.
  Mark noted that, "Once again, the POM choice was not easy. There is a wide selection with many contenders waiting in the wings." After careful consideration of the many candidates, the choice for the April Picture of the Month was Shawn Berglund's 'Aurora over Vernon' (http://rascoc.zenfolio.com/p229933384/h5ae2a31d#h5ae2a31d). It was noted that the composition has urban and celestial elements, nicely exposed and well presented.
  Congratulations to Shawn Berglund on having his picture selected as the April Picture of the Month on our Zenfolio gallery. The photo was taken on October 3, 2015 as a bright aurora rolled over the city of Vernon. The image is a 5 second exposure at f3.5 using a Nikon D5200 camera at ISO 400 and a stock 18-55mm lens. The picture can be seen here:
  Close contenders included Shawn's recent upload of images of Jupiter, Jim Failes' 'Fading in, Fading Out'; Dave Gamble's 'California Nebula'; James Kanester's 'Blue Moon Rising Near the Blue Nose'; and John Karlsson's 'Messier 104, the Sombrero Galaxy' (Mark noted, "John's sketch is practically a copy of what I saw in my eyepiece the other night.").
  Also in the running were: Debra and Peter Ceravolo's 'Mercury, Moon & Venus Conjunction'; Gemma Grain's first picture of the Moon; Murray Hainer's new upload of M42, "Holy moly! That is a superlative first time submission!"; and James Kanester's 'Horsehead and Flame Nebulae in Orion'.
  To view the new Picture of the Month as well as the other pictures mentioned here, they can be browsed in our Zenfolio gallery at http://rascoc.zenfolio.com.
Okanagan Observatory:
  The Observatory will someday become home to Hugh Pett’s most recent project, a Cosmic Ray Telescope. With the snow pack now retreating it won’t be long before the O is up and running again. A new security company is a possibility

Outreach Events:
Observatory Clear Sky Chart
RASC Okanagan Centre
RASC National
Live Comet Data
Satellite Tracker
Criminal Records Review Act
Criminal Record Check Information
Contact: Olaf Lutz