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Observatory program to explore 'Amazing Technicolor H-R Diagram'

October 8, 2010
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Astrophotographer Stan Richards took this photo of the observatory that shows Venus and Saturn in conjunction on July 15, 2001.

CONTACT: Lisa Lacher, 515-271-3119, lisa.lacher@drake.edu

Fall astronomy presentations will continue at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 8, with a program about "The Amazing Technicolor H-R Diagram" at the Drake Municipal Observatory, 4898 Observatory Road in Waveland Park on the west side of Des Moines.

The H-R diagram is a vitally important tool that sorts the stars and provides strong
clues as to the distance to the stars as well as their energy.

The series, which is free and open to the public, will continue each
Friday at 8 p.m. through Oct. 29, with a non-technical, illustrated
presentation by Charles Nelson or Herbert Schwartz of Drake University's
Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Each presentation will be followed by the opportunity to view
several stellar objects through the large refracting telescope and
several smaller reflecting telescopes.

The programs are held regardless of the weather, although the
selection for observation is subject to change due to sky conditions or
other special circumstances.

Individuals, families and small groups are welcome to attend the
presentations. A parent or responsible adult must accompany children.
Parking is available adjacent to the observatory.

The schedule for the remainder of the fall series is listed below:

*    Oct. 15: "More Tricks for Spectrums"

*    Oct. 22: "Discovering How the Sun Works"

*    Oct. 29: "Fantasy Becomes Reality"

For more information, contact Drake's Department of Physics and Astronomy at 515-271-3141.