Comet Party—View The Green Comet!, The Institute

Comet Party—View The Green Comet!, The Institute

Attention all stargazers and astronomy enthusiasts!
The Institute and the TriState Astronomers (TSA) invite you to a Comet Party to view “The Green Comet” through the telescopes of the TSA at Pine Hill Recreation Area on two consecutive evenings—Friday, Feb. 3 and Saturday, Feb. 4 between 7:30 and 10 p.m.
The program is part of The Institute’s Naturalist Discovery Series.
In early February, comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF)—nicknamed The Green Comet—will be around 26 million miles from Earth.
That is the closest it has come to our planet in the last 50,000 years!
The last time C/2022 E3 (ZTF) paid a visit was at the start of the Upper Paleolithic age, when homo sapiens first started moving out of Africa and into Asia and Eurasia.
You can bring your own telescopes and binoculars for the viewing experience, and/or use our big telescopes.
Don’t miss this rare opportunity to witness the beauty of a comet up close.
This green-looking comet might also be visible without the need of a telescope or binoculars.
In addition to the comet, we will be looking at stars and features of the winter sky.
Participation is free and everyone is welcome.
The comet party can only happen if the sky is mostly clear.
Watch our website for updates if weather is questionable.
Astronomy: Why is it 2021? The Sun, the Moon, and the Calendars we Keep

Astronomy: Why is it 2021? The Sun, the Moon, and the Calendars we Keep

Thursday January 28th, 2021 * 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
The Institute via Zoom
Dr. Lawrence Marschall, Professor of Physics Emeritus, Gettysburg College, discusses the astronomical aspects of the calendar. 
WHY IS IT 2021? The Sun, the Moon, and the Calendars we Keep
Though we seldom think about it, the calendar is based on astronomical observations—although how to define the year is decided by human convention.
In this presentation, Dr. Marschall will look at the basic cycles of the the sun and the moon that have been used to devise calendars, especially the Gregorian calendar we use in everyday life, everywhere on Earth.
Discussion includes questions like, “Why we have leap years every four years?” and “Why will the year 2100 not be a leap year?”
The program is free and offered via Zoom. 
A professor of astronomy and physics for many years, Marschall was a visiting research scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, and at Yale University Observatory. He wrote The Supernova Story, published by Princeton University Press. Marschall has a bachelor’s degree in engineering physics from Cornell University and a Ph.D in astronomy and astrophysics from University of Chicago.
To register for this free program, send an email to info@NatureAndCultureInstitute.org. You will receive the Zoom meeting link once it has been created.
Renfrew Institute Sponsors “What Cassini Told Us About Saturn”

Renfrew Institute Sponsors “What Cassini Told Us About Saturn”

Dr. Larry Marschall, professor of physics, emeritus, at Gettysburg College, will present “What Cassini Told Us About Saturn” on Thursday, February 1 at 7 p.m. in the Visitors Center at Renfrew Park in Waynesboro. The program is free and open to the public.

Marschall will discuss the dramatic end of the historic Cassini spacecraft mission to Saturn, and what astronomers learned from the nearly two decades the Cassini was in orbit. 

Before the Cassini mission, scientists had only minimal knowledge of Saturn’s complicated ring system, moons, and the planet’s magnetosphere.

The first spacecraft to orbit Saturn, Cassini provided the first up-close study of the system of Saturn’s rings and moons. Many discoveries were made via Cassini’s findings that changed the way scientists will approach future space exploration.

Marschall will talk about what was learned from the 20 years of Cassini’s mission, and why it was necessary for the Cassini mission to end with a dramatic and fiery descent into Saturn’s atmosphere. 

A professor of astronomy and physics for many years, Marschall was a visiting research scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, and at Yale University Observatory. He wrote The Supernova Story, published by Princeton University Press, and is a contributing editor for Smithsonian Air & Space Magazine and for several other professional journals. Marschall has a bachelor’s degree in engineering physics from Cornell University and a Ph.D in astronomy and astrophysics from University of Chicago. 

A question-and-answer session will follow Marschall’s presentation. Weather permitting, the Tri-State Astronomers club will set up telescopes for sky viewing after the program.

This program was arranged in cooperation with the Tri-State Astronomers. It is underwritten in part by Marge Kiersz, Lucinda D. Potter, CPA, and Smith, Elliott, Kearns & Company, with additional support from Renfrew Institute’s Today’s Horizon Fund contributors: The Nora Roberts Foundation; Alma W. Oyer; APX Enclosures, Inc.; The Carolyn Terry Eddy Family: Carolyn, with daughters Connie Fleagle & Kim Larkin; and the The John R. Hershey Jr. and Anna L. Hershey Family Foundation. Facility support is provided courtesy of Renfrew Museum and Park.

Parking is available behind the Visitor Center with additional parking in the lower lot off Welty Rd. For more information, call the institute at 762-0373 or email to: info@renfrewinstitute.org.