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Paper: Getting Lun(ar)y at McDonald Observatory
Volume: 431, Science Education and Outreach: Forging a Path to the Future
Page: 433
Authors: Cianciolo, F.; Mace, J. K.; Fuechsl, R.; Preston, S.; Geiger, S.
Abstract: The McDonald Observatory offers a number of “Special Viewing Nights” on several of our research telescopes at various times. Most of these programs are designed to take advantage of our dark West Texas skies by observing many deep-space objects such as nebulae and galaxies. Building on our IYA momentum, however, we decided to design a new Viewing Night to highlight that very first celestial telescopic target and banisher of dark skies, the Moon. Using digital imagers and large format monitors as well as eyepieces allows for detailed viewing of numerous lunar features. Hands-on activities enhance program participants’ understanding of basic concepts such as phases and cratering. Concentrating our focus on the Moon utilizes a large portion of the lunar month we had previously written off for any special programming and even opens the eventual possibility of daytime observing of something other than the Sun.
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