Lick Observatory Summer Series of Events are on for 2022! Tickets go on sale on April 13th, 2022 at Noon.
Event Information

Tonight’s Host: Dr. Elinor Gates

7:30 pm Doors Open Brief Telescope Visits
8:30 pm Concert
9:30 pm Science Talk, Lecture Hall Telescope Viewings
10:30 pm Science Talk (repeated), Lecture Hall Telescope Viewings
1:00 am  Doors Close

This Evening’s Events

Concert

Golden Bough
Golden Bough

Rooted in the traditional music of the seven Celtic nations (Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, The Isle of Man, French Brittany, and Spanish Galicia), Golden Bough has become a popular and in-demand group on both sides of the Atlantic.

Since their formation in 1980, this trio of modern day minstrels has traveled great distances to numerous countries, to bring their music to enthusiastic folk fans the world over. Backing themselves on an array of acoustic instruments; Celtic harp, guitar, octave-mandolin, mandolin, accordion, violin, penny-whistle, and bodhran, they blend their voices in the pristine harmonies that have become a Golden Bough trademark. Visit the Golden Bough website for more information.

Science Lecture

(presented twice)

Dr. Jessica Lu
Dr. Jessica Lu

University of California, Berkeley

“The Hunt for Black Holes in the Milky Way”

Dr. Jessica Lu is an Associate Professor of Astronomy at UC, Berkeley. Her research group is conducting a search for black holes in the Milky Way using gravitational lensing. Her group also studies how stars are born in extreme environments such as in massive star clusters and around the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way. These black hole studies require very high resolution images of the Universe at infrared wavelengths. Prof. Lu helps develop astronomical instruments that deliver sharp views of the sky using adaptive optics systems on large ground-based telescopes. She is the Project Scientist for the ‘imaka and KAPA projects, which aim to expand the reach of adaptive optics to wider fields of view and more places in the sky. Prof. Lu is also a member of international science teams for the future Thirty Meter Telescope and the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope.

Tonight’s Telescopes & Objects

36-inch Lick Refractor. Photo (c) Laurie Hatch.

Lick Observatory’s 36-inch Great Refractor saw “first light” in 1888. At the time, it was the largest refractor telescope in the world. It is an enduring memorial to James Lick’s philanthropy and his final resting place.

For nearly 300 years after Galileo first turned a telescope toward the heavens it was believed that the largest planet in our solar system, Jupiter, had just four moons. In 1892, using the Lick’s 36-inch Great Refractor, Edward Barnard discovered a fifth moon, the much fainter Amalthea, the last moon of any planet to be discovered without the aid of photography, electronic detectors or space-based telescopes.

The 36-inch telescope will show you an interesting astronomical object of the telescope operator’s choosing. This may be a globular cluster of stars, a binary star, or a galaxy.

Nickel 1-m Telescope. Photo (c) Laurie Hatch.

The Nickel 40-inch Reflector, named for philanthropist Anna Nickel, was designed and built in the Lick Observatory Technical Facilities at UC Santa Cruz and completed in 1979. The 40” diameter mirror of this modern telescope makes it the third most powerful telescope on Mount Hamilton.

Tonight you will view M17, the Swan Nebula in the constellation Sagittarius.

Telescope Operators:

36-inch Great Refractor

Patrick Maloney | Monique Windju

40-inch Reflector

Murali Balasubramaniam

40-inch Control Room

Dave Coulter

Telescopes will be available for viewing, weather conditions permitting, as soon as it is dark enough and will remain open until everyone has had an opportunity to see through both telescopes.

Share tonight’s experience on Social Media: #LickObservatory @LickObservatory

Additional Viewing Opportunities – Weather Permitting

Amateur astronomers have telescopes set up behind the main building. They will enjoy showing you other objects in the sky.

The Gift Shop is open tonight from 7:30 pm to 11:30 pm.

Refreshments

Snacks and beverages are available at the refreshment table in the main foyer. All proceeds help support the public programs. In the past, we have used proceeds to purchase an Automated External Defibrillator (AED), additional wooden benches in the main building, new speakers and amplifiers for the main building hallway, and partial funding of two spotting telescopes by the flag pole.

Dark Adjustment

Your experience at the telescopes will be better if your eyes have had an opportunity to adjust to the dark. For this reason, we try to keep the light levels low in both wings of the main hall.

Lights

Please refrain from use of flash photography or white light flashlights in the domes or adjoining hallway.

Assistance

We strive to make your visit as complete and meaningful as possible. Please let us know if you will need special assistance (for example, if you will have difficulty climbing stairs) by emailing tickets@ucolick.org, so we can make the necessary arrangements.

Our Volunteers

All of Lick Observatory’s public programs are greatly enhanced by the valuable participation of our many dedicated volunteers.

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