Marquette Astronomical Society

See The Wonders of the Universe from Northern Michigan

MAS  has a  10" GoTo scope. As seen below with a 25mm, 2" dia. eyepeice. The battery help make it completely portable. One person can manage to haul and setup mount and scope. Once aligned on two bright stars, it the GoTo pad can be used to quickly point to any object, no matter how faint. This scope was checked out in the Fall and will be ready to go  for club observing this Spring. We can now observe as many as 20 deep sky objects on one hour!

Welcome to the MAS web site

This site is one of two sites we have. The other is a Night Sky Network site:

http://nightsky.jpl.nasa.gov/club-view.cfm?Club_ID=672&View=Public

We are a member of that network, an outreach program of NASA's. If you have any questions about MAS membership or MAS or astronomy, contact Scott : dstobbel@sbcglobal.net  or Craig :   craiglnd@yahoo.com

Establishing A Dark Sky Park in Marquette-Aug. 2016

The west side of Presque Isle Park has become a de facto Dark Sky Park. We would like to make it official and seek certification from the International Dark Sky Association (IDA). Currently there is only one certified Dark Sky Park in Michigan

 

There are many requirements for certification the more important prerequisites are:

 

Ø  Darkness equal to or greater than 20 magnitudes per square arc second. On moonless nights Presque Isle has darkness readings above 21magnitudes per square arc second (the higher the number the darker the sky) 

 

Ø  Education of adjacent property owners in hopes that they will voluntarily reduce their light pollution. The current street lighting at Presque Isle has no functionality. The Water Shed people leave at 4:30 pm, and pavilion renters must be out by 10 pm when it is just beginning to get dark during the summer.

 

 

Ø  Interpretive programs to educate the public about the vast universe above us. Currently, the Marquette Astronomy Society provides periodic public viewing sessions utilizing expensive telescopes. We hope to provide more interpretive talks, perhaps at Peter White Library.

Library Telescope Loan Program Proposed

This is a 4.5" short focus loaner scope used in cooperation between a New Hampshire astronomy club & there library. MAS plans to do the same thing with the Peter White Public Library. The scope is modified so that no one can tamper with it but can use it to observe sky objects easily. Has a zoom eyepiece so power can be changed with out changing eyepieces. Will provide 30 to 60 power. Sits on a table. Has instruction & star & Moon maps. Instruction will be available. Stay Tunes to this page for further developments. 

Next Step: Sept. 15th, 2016: Presque Isle Advisory Board votes on our proposal

If approved, our proposal will be sent to the City Commission for their approval. We are requiring that 3 LED lights near the pavilion be turned off and filter put on the lights at the pavilion. Meanwhile, the first library loan scopes has been received and is currently being tested by club members. Stay tuned for further developments!

MAS presented its proposal for a Dark Sky Park at Presque Isle-Aug. 2016

Aug. 10th MAS had the opportunity to read their proposal to the Presque Isle Advisory Committee on making the western side of the park a Dark Sky Park. The committee members seemed very receptive to the idea and will vote on it at their next meeting, Sept. 14th. Then their recommendation will then move to the City Commission for their approval. If all goes well we could see the 3 LED lights near the Pavilion turned off and the yellow light at the restrooms changed to red. So, it will be a while before Presque Isle gets used as dark sky park, but the process has begun. Meanwhile the telescope loan program for PWPL has started. That too will be a process before patrons of the library can check a scope out. Stay tuned for more developments.

 

Observing at Presque Isle's western side

 This was 1997 when Comet Hale-Bopp  was at its peak in March. This is how good the night sky can appear at the area we hope becomes designated a "Dark Sky Park" by the City of Marquette. In 1997 there were no LED lights like there are now. We would like them removed or turned off.

Solar Eclipse Aug. 21st, 2017-This Summer!!

Don't miss this eclipse this summer. You should have made your plans already to be in the path of totality on Aug. 21st in early afternoon. The path of Moon shadow will race across the earth from Oregon to South Carolina. Google it for more info. In MQT area 75% of Sun will be hidden.