The physics department at Stanislaus State will once again host Observation Night to give the community the opportunity to interact with a scientist who is knowledgeable in astronomy as they view the seasonal planet and star formations through the observatory telescope and smaller telescopes.
Stars, constellations and planets that may be viewed during Observation Night include the constellation Orion (especially at 7 p.m.) and the stars that make up the winter circle (Sirius, Procyon, Castor, Pollux, Capella and Rigel), as well as the star Aldabaran, and the star cluster called the Pleiades (the Seven Sisters). Jupiter should be visible by 8 p.m. in which case up to four of its moons would be visible through the telescope. All four moons should be visible, three on one side of Jupiter and one (Ganymede) on the other. The Andromeda Galaxy will be in the western sky at 7 p.m., but fairly close to the horizon, and will have set by 9 p.m. The moon rises just before 9 p.m.
Observation Night is scheduled from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursday and guests should check in on the first floor of the Naraghi Hall of Science. The program will be divided into eight 25-minute presentations throughout the evening to accommodate as many people as possible.
Free parking will be made available in front of the Naraghi Hall of Science in Lot 11. To make a reservation for this family-friendly event, call the Office of Service Learning at 667-3311.