Sorry, no pictures for this event, but we had a great time as always! Russ from OC Astronomers brought his massive 20-inch diameter telescope, and we had the Mobile Observatory running live video from the ISS, with Eyes on the Solar System outside.
In the quad area we had a full Spooky Science event, with over 20 stations, including objects that glow under “black” (UV-A) light, spider-sense webs, plasma sphere, take-home experiments, mathematical arts and crafts, and many more.
Wow! The Spooktacular Fun Days event over the weekend was a great one! We had hundreds of people of all ages come through our Mobile Observatory, and hundreds more stop by to tour the Solar System and pick up stickers.
Our voices were rough for a few days afterward, but it was absolutely worthwhile, and we’ll be back next year, for sure! Come see us then, or if you can’t wait, check out our Calendar for upcoming public events.
The fall season of Science Heads is under way with an event at Lake Forest Elementary School! We premiered our Spooky Science program, featuring our mobile observatory (MOBS), plasma sphere, exhibit of household materials that glow under UV-A (“black”) light, “blood” tub, optical illusions, spider-sense webs, and over twenty other great stations!
We were able to see Saturn through our telescope, and had quite a line of people taking a look. The MOBS also had live video from the International Space Station, and an outside display of NASA’s Eyes on the Solar System software.
We are just getting started on our Fall events. Stay tuned for more reports!
A big thank you to our volunteers who made this an outstanding event!
Members of Science Heads traveled to John Day, Oregon and Idaho Falls, Idaho to observe the total solar eclipse. It was the first total solar eclipse that most of us had the opportunity to experience, and was definitely worth the time and travel needed to see this amazing natural phenomenon.
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) produced a video featuring our mobile observatory, which was seen during the eclipse coverage on NASA TV. Unfortunately only half of it was played during the live eclipse coverage because of a technical problem.
Meanwhile, Michal Peri organized an expedition attended by thirty people, including two other board members, James and Rebecca Hammond, to the town of John Day, Oregon. James was able to capture some images of the eclipse, which you can see at the end of the photo gallery, below.
All of us had an incredible time, and are making plans to seeing totality again! Get ready, everyone, because the next American total solar eclipse is April 8, 2024. (And if you just can’t wait, there are two in South America in 2019 and 2020.)
The Mobile Observatory rests briefly in Arches National Park on its journey to Idaho Falls.
Science Heads’ Mobile Observatory outside the Museum of Idaho in Idaho Falls.
Our Mobile Observatory parked outside the Museum of Idaho in Idaho Falls
Our solar telescopes are mounted on the pier inside the Mobile Observatory
Crowd waits for total eclipse outside the Museum of Idaho in Idaho Falls.
Science Heads Executive Director Richard Stember prepares the Mobile Observatory’s solar telescopes for broadcasting the eclipse.
The crowd outside the Museum of Idaho in Idaho Falls watches the progress of the eclipse.
Richard Stember checks the progress of the eclipse from the door of the Mobile Observatory
Small gaps in the tree canopy work as pinholes to show crescent images of the partly-eclipsed Sun.
The sky in Idaho Falls darkens as the Moon nears complete coverage of the Sun.
Total solar eclipse over the Mobile Observatory in Idaho Falls.
Solar Eclipse forms a “Diamond Ring” just before totality, observed from John Day, Oregon
Solar eclipse at totality. The corona becomes visible as the Moon blocks the Sun’s photosphere completely. Observed at John Day, Oregon.
Solar Eclipse forms a “Diamond Ring” just after totality, observed from John Day, Oregon
Not traveling to the path of totality? You can watch the whole event on NASA TV. Science Heads is helping NASA broadcast the eclipse live from Idaho Falls, Idaho. Richard Stember will be manning our Mobile Observatory on location at the Museum of Idaho. NASA TV will be streaming live video from our observatory’s telescopes. The coverage will include interviews and information about Science Heads and the eclipse.
Many cable and satellite services include the NASA TV channel in their lineup. You can also watch the live stream from the official NASA eclipse website.
With safe solar eclipse glasses you will be able to see a partial eclipse from Southern California. But for an idea of what a total solar eclipse is like – be sure to tune in to the live NASA TV coverage starting at 9:00 am PDT. Idaho Falls coverage starts at 10:15 am PDT.
Locally the eclipse will begin at 9:05 am PDT. Maximum is at 10:21 am and the eclipse ends at 11:44 am PDT.
Dr. Michal Peri will start the evening with a talk on the upcoming solar eclipse of August 21st (just three weeks away!), which will travel from west to east all the way across the U.S.
Following her talk, Science Heads will be hosting night-sky viewing in our Mobile Observatory, three fun science and art stations outside, and an interactive 3D tour of the solar system using NASA software and imagery.
Science Heads Executive Director, Richard Stember, gave a talk on the upcoming solar eclipse at the Mission Viejo Library in front of an audience of more than 70 people. The talk was well received, and Richard got many compliments from those attending.
Science Heads volunteers and board members held an event at the library afterward, focused on solar science and eclipse viewing. We really appreciated the interest, and the opportunity to answer many questions about the sun and the solar eclipse on August 21st.
Be sure to tune in to NASA TV for live coverage of the eclipse, including a broadcast of the eclipse’s progress from inside our mobile observatory! Richard will be driving the observatory to Idaho Falls, where he will connect our solar telescope to a live video feed.
Eclipse art project for the day, using chalk to make a solar corona.
Kiwanis International Magazine’s August 2017 issue features an article on our Mobile Observatory. Including photos from our April ribbon cutting event, the article highlights the support of the Mission Viejo Kiwanis club, who sponsored the construction of the Mobile Observatory.
Science Heads was proud to participate in the Lake Forest Camp Out at the sports park, on the 15th.
After the last story was told around the campfire and the park lights were doused, we opened up our telescopes for viewing of Jupiter and Saturn. The “seeing” as the astronomers say, was spectacular for city viewing. We were able to see the Cassini Division in the rings of Saturn, and even get a glimpse of the Great Red Spot on Jupiter.
We’ll be participating in future Lake Forest city events, so check in on our Event Calendar!