BayAstro – Events of Week of 12/07/2020 and Beyond

The BayAstro group publishes announcements of interesting events related to astronomy and aerospace in the San Francisco Bay Area. This can include events such as astronomy and interesting physical science lectures, club meetings, star parties, air shows and other events of interest mostly to amateur astronomers and science enthusiasts. Many thanks to Ken Lum, who created this event listing.
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Due to concerns about the spread of the Coronavirus or COVID-19 virus, some events have been or may be cancelled. Many venues will be closed perhaps until the end of the year. Other events may offer online links and connections. To check on the status of a given event, check their website for updates.
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Tuesday, 12/08/20
07:00 PM – 08:00 PM

Chabot Space and Science Center

A Grand Tour of Remarkable Exoplanets – Livestream

Exoplanets are everywhere. Astronomers have discovered more 4,000 of them and today we know that in average each star in our galaxy has 2 planets! Among them, 300 million could be habitable. That’s a lot of worlds!
The SETI Institute’s Franck Marchis will give us a tour of the most remarkable exoplanets, those who could be a twin of Earth as well as those weird worlds which are very different to the planets we find in our solar system. Lava worlds, ocean worlds, hot Jupiters, super-Earths? What do those names mean to astronomers? We will dive into these other worlds and discuss why they are important to scientists who are searching for life.

See weblink for Youtube and Facebook links

Website: https://chabotspace.org/calendar/a-grand-tour-of-remarkable-exoplanets

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SYzMkTqlYk

Cost: Free

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Thursday, 12/10/20 7:00 PM

ExplOratorium

After Dark Online: Celestial – Solar Eclipse – Livestream

On December 14, the shadow of the moon will cross Earth in a rare event called a total solar eclipse. For a small portion of Earthly observers – in this case, those in a narrow stripe across South America – the moon will be perfectly lined up between our planet and the sun, casting an eerie darkness and offering a magnificent view of the solar corona. Join us to learn more about this fascinating alignment and prime yourself for the upcoming eclipse.

The movements and mechanics of the planets, moons, and stars create awesome effects for us observers on earth. Predictable yet coincidental, these cycles among the stars lead to gravitational bulges, lunar alignments, and a turnaround of apparent motion. Join us this month as we explore these effects as opportunities for wonder and harbingers of future change.

Ages 18+

Website: https://www.exploratorium.edu/visit/calendar/after-dark-online-celestial-solar-eclipse

Cost: Free

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Thursday, 12/10/20
07:00 PM – 08:00 PM

Astronomy on Tap

Astronomy at Home – Seattle: Charting the High Frontier of Space – Livestream

How can we find and track all of the asteroids in our solar system? How can we map space? Join us and former astronaut(!) Dr. Ed Lu as he’ll talk about his efforts mapping space with the B612 Asteroid Institute. The event will begin at 7pm and there will be lots of time to ask questions afterwards. We’ll be going live on Zoom and Youtube at 7pm PST! Then join us at 8pm on our Instagram for an Instagram Live Q&A with Dr. Lu!

Website: http://astronomyontap.org/2020/12/astronomy-at-home-seattle-december-10th-online/

Cost: Free

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Saturday, 12/12/20
09:00 PM – 10:30 PM

Virtual Telescope Viewing – Livestream

Join our resident astronomers on Facebook Live every Saturday evening live from Chabot’s Observation deck!

Each week, our astronomers will guide us through spectacular night sky viewing through Nellie, Chabot‘s most powerful telescope. Weather permitting we will be able to view objects live through the telescopes and our astronomers will be available for an open forum for all of your most pressing astronomy questions.

We will go live the Chabot Space & Science Center Facebook page 10-15 minutes before the event. You can find the live video stream on our Facebook page and in the Facebook event discussion. To receive a notification when we go live, “like” Chabot Space & Science Center on Facebook and RSVP that you’re going to this event.

RSVP on Facebook.

Other Dates For This Event:
• Saturday, 12/12/20
• Saturday, 12/19/20
• Saturday, 12/26/20

Website: https://chabotspace.org/calendar/free-telescope-viewings/2020-10-03

Cost: Free

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Saturday, 12/12/2020
9 PM-sunrise

The Geminid Meteor shower will peak this weekend from Saturuday night to Monday morning. According to the December issue of Sky and Telescope magazine, this is now the richest meteor shower of the year competing with the Perseids in August for the most number of meteors per hour. The radient will arise from the direction of the constellation of Gemini to the northeast with meteors being visible all over the sky. More on this event in the December issue of Sky and Telescope. And no telescope or binoculars are needed! Dress warm for the cold temperatures.

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Sunday, 12/13/2020
9 PM-sunrise

The Geminid Meteor shower will peak this weekend from Saturuday night to Monday morning. According to the December issue of Sky and Telescope magazine, this is now the richest meteor shower of the year competing with the Perseids in August for the most number of meteors per hour. The radient will arise from the direction of the constellation of Gemini to the northeast with meteors being visible all over the sky. More on this event in the December issue of Sky and Telescope. And no telescope or binoculars are needed! Dress warm for the cold temperatures.

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Wednesday, 12/16/20
07:00 PM – 08:00 PM

SETI Institute

A Rainbow of Exoplanets – Livestream

We identified an exoplanet color for the first time in 2013: HD 189733b, a Jupiter-like exoplanet was determined to be dark-blue. Since then, astronomers have discovered more than 4,000 exoplanets and found out that a significant fraction of them are terrestrial. After detecting them, the next challenge is to image them, which will reveal their color. So what is the color of a lifeless terrestrial exoplanet? Will it be red because of rust like Mars, or blueish-white because of clouds in the atmosphere like Venus in visible light?

Among the 300 million potentially habitable planets in our galaxy, can we expect that more than one will indeed host a type of life? What will be the impact of this life on their colors? Can we expect this planet to have the same vegetation as our Earth? What colors are associated with the presence of microbiological activity on the surface of a planet? What do a planet’s colors tell us about habitability on its surface? Astronomers predict that one day we will see the color of an Earth-like exoplanet.

To answer these questions, we invited two scientists from different backgrounds to our SETI Talk. Angelle Tanner, associate professor at Mississippi State University who is interested in finding habitable planets outside our solar system and will tell us about the vegetation of exoplanets and the technology we could one day use to see an exoplanet. Ivan Paulino-Lima, biologist at Blue Marble Institute of Science, is interested in extremophiles and leads microbiological experiments in satellites around Earth and is involved in research on the colors of bacteria.

Speakers: Andelle Tanner, Mississippi State University; Ivan Paulino-Lima, Blue Marble Space Institute of Science

Register at weblink to receive Zoom information.

Website: https://www.seti.org/event/seti-talks-rainbow-exoplanets

Cost: Free

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Wednesday, 12/16/20 7:30 PM

San Francisco Amateur Astronomers

Why Do Galaxies Die? How Silicon Valley’s “Spectral Revolution” will Solve a 100 Year Old Mystery – Livestream

Over one hundred years ago, Edwin Hubble noticed two distinct classes of galaxies; youthful Spirals with ongoing star formation, and “red and dead” smooth, faded and barren Ellipticals.

The MaNGA Survey, which is mapping 10,000 nearby galaxies, will help us understand how all types of galaxies formed in the early universe. We are on the verge of a “spectral revolution”, enabled by nanotechnology and photonics that will transform astronomical instruments.

Speaker: Kevin Bundy, Lick Observatory and UC Santa Cruz

Zoom link. See weblink for additional connection information.

Website: https://www.sfaa-astronomy.org/live-streamed-lectures/

Cost: Free

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Thursday, 12/17/20 7:00 PM

ExplOratorium

After Dark Online: Celestial – Winter Solstice – Livestream

Lighten up your outlook as we observe the end of the sun’s journey across the horizon. The winter solstice marks the longest night of the year and return of daylight as our star reverses its apparent course in the sky. Learn about the significance of the solstice and the mechanics that make it possible, and celebrate the light during this final After Dark Online of the year.

The movements and mechanics of the planets, moons, and stars create awesome effects for us observers on earth. Predictable yet coincidental, these cycles among the stars lead to gravitational bulges, lunar alignments, and a turnaround of apparent motion. Join us this month as we explore these effects as opportunities for wonder and harbingers of future change.

See weblink for YouTube and Facebook Live links.

Website: https://www.exploratorium.edu/visit/calendar/after-dark-online-celestial-winter-solstice

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/Exploratorium

Cost: Free

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Friday, 12/18/20 7:00 PM

Tri-Valley Stargazers

How to build the world’s biggest telescopes- Livestream

Increasing our knowledge of how the universe works has always been enabled by technological development. From the invention of the telescope by Galileo, over 400 years ago, to the development of 8 to 10 meter class telescopes and the launch of the Hubble telescope at the end of the last century, fantastic new discoveries have been made by users of the latest and greatest telescopes. Progress continues to this day, with three major new telescopes under development world-wide. After a brief overview Brian will concentrate on the current development of the Giant Magellan Telescope, a 25m diameter telescope expected to see light later this decade on Las Campanas Peak in Chile. Here are some of the questions he will address: Who’s designing and building it? What is the process for carrying out such a big project? Who will get to use it and what questions will they answer with the telescope?

Speaker: Dr. Brian McLeod, Harvard

See weblink for online instructions. Non-members will need to email the club president for a link.

Website: https://www.trivalleystargazers.org

Cost: Free

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Saturday, 12/19/20
09:00 PM – 10:30 PM

Chabot Space and Science Center

Virtual Telescope Viewing – Livestream

Join our resident astronomers on Facebook Live every Saturday evening live from Chabot’s Observation deck!

Each week, our astronomers will guide us through spectacular night sky viewing through Nellie, Chabot‘s most powerful telescope. Weather permitting we will be able to view objects live through the telescopes and our astronomers will be available for an open forum for all of your most pressing astronomy questions.

We will go live the Chabot Space & Science Center Facebook page 10-15 minutes before the event. You can find the live video stream on our Facebook page and in the Facebook event discussion. To receive a notification when we go live, “like” Chabot Space & Science Center on Facebook and RSVP that you’re going to this event.

RSVP on Facebook.

Other Dates For This Event:
• Saturday, 12/19/20
• Saturday, 12/26/20

Website: https://chabotspace.org/calendar/free-telescope-viewings/2020-10-03

Cost: Free

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Monday, 12/21/20
07:30 PM – 09:30 PM

Wonderfest

Wonderfest: Madame Curie – Livestream

Wonderfest is delighted to present Madame Curie, a new musical-theater tribute to Earth’s most accomplished female scientist. As Maria Sklodowska was becoming Marie Curie, she emigrated 1000 miles from Poland to France, overcame xenophobia and sexism, and pioneered our understanding of radioactivity. In the process, she earned Nobel prizes (plural!) in physics and chemistry, and treated – directly and indirectly – over a million WWI soldiers with her mobile X-ray units.

“I have frequently been questioned, especially by women, regarding how I could reconcile family life with a scientific career. Well, it has not been easy.” – M. Curie

Madame Curie brings to life the story and spirit of a revolutionary. It features a compelling narrative, beautiful music, and eleven experienced actors who sheltered in their respective homes during recording! Fully orchestrated in the Rodgers and Hammerstein tradition, Madame Curie will revive your love of science, and it will especially inspire young women to heed their call to the passionate exploration of Nature.

“All my life through, the new sights of Nature made me rejoice like a child.” – M. Curie

See weblink for connection information.

Website: https://wonderfest.org/madame-curie/

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