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March 2022

Bright Sky Digest 

Monthly SAS Newsletter
NASA's Perseverance Mars rover snapped this view of a hill in Mars' Jezero Crater called "Santa Cruz" on April 29, 2021, the 68th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.
Image Credit: NASA Image of the Day 

The SAS Annual Banquet is Back!

2022 SAS Annual Banquet
Saturday, March 19
5:00 - 9:00 p.m. | Swedish Club


Let's come together for a night of astronomy, community, and celebration! New friends and longtime SAS members are welcome.

We're thrilled to announce that Dr. Joanne Hughes-Clark, Associate Professor of Physics at Seattle U, will be presenting on observational astronomy of globular clusters and dwarf galaxies. Seattle band Warren Dunes will also provide vibrant music and entertainment for the evening.

New this year: An astrophotography fundraising gallery powered by our own SAS community! Proceeds from the gallery and donations from the night will support a new SAS Youth Summer Camp.

Ticket costs:
- $55 for SAS members
- $66 for non-members/guests
Get Tickets

Four Female Astronomers You Should Know About

It's Women's History Month and we wanted to celebrate by highlighting four female astronomers you may not have heard of before, who made their mark on history as well as modern astronomy.
Wang Zhenyi (1768 – 1797) only lived to be twenty-nine, but was very accomplished in the academic world. She breached the feudal customs of the time, which hindered women's rights, by working to educate herself in astronomy and other subjects. Most notably, she explained how equinoxes move and how to calculate their movement in her article, "Dispute of the Procession of the Equinoxes."
 
Annie Jump Cannon (1863 – 1941) was an American astronomer whose cataloging work was instrumental in the development of contemporary 
stellar classification. With Edward C. Pickering, she is credited with the creation of the Harvard Classification Scheme, which was the first serious attempt to organize and classify stars based on their temperatures and spectral types. She was also a suffragist and a member of the National Women's Party.
Lyudmila Zhuravleva (1946 - ) is a Ukrainian astronomer, who worked at the Crimean Astrophysical Observatory in Nauchnij, where she is credited with having discovered 200 minor planets, and co-discovered an additional 13 between 1972 and 1992. She also discovered a number of asteroids, including the Trojan asteroid 4086 Podalirius and asteroid 2374 Vladvysotskij.
 
Dr. Jane Luu (1963 - ) is a Vietnamese American astronomer and defense systems engineer. Working at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at NASA after college inspired her to study astronomy. She was awarded the Kavli Prize (shared with David C. Jewitt and Michael Brown) in 2012 for discovering and characterizing the Kuiper Belt and its largest members, work that led to a major advance in the understanding of the history of our planetary system. 

March Stargazing Highlights

March 21 - April 7
The closest grouping of Venus, Mars, and Saturn in many years will occur in late March and early April. All three planets will fit within a ten-degree circle in the pre-dawn sky. (Ten degrees is about the width of your clenched fist held out at arm’s length).

March 27
The trio will be joined by a crescent moon, about 10 degrees to the right of Mars. The best time to look is 20 to 30 minutes before dawn (Civil Twilight), while the sky is still dark enough to see Mars and Saturn. Dawn in Seattle will be at 6:27 AM PDT on March 27 and will occur about 2 minutes earlier each day. 

March 28
Closest approach will occur when the planets fit within a six-degree span. You will need a clear view down to the southeast horizon because the planets are quite low in the sky (about five degrees altitude).

March 29
Venus will pass 2.1 degrees north of Saturn. In a small telescope with a low power eyepiece (about 15 to 20 power) the two planets will be in the same field of view for several days around this date. Venus will show a slightly gibbous phase, 55% illuminated. Saturn will appear about half the apparent size of Venus.

April 5 
Mars will pass 0.4 degrees south (below and to the left) of Saturn.

Article contributed by: Bob Mulford, SAS Board member and Equipment Manager

2022 SAS Board

Elected positions: 
  • President: Aaron Yoon (continuing)
  • VP Activities: Rayna Bauer
  • VP Education: David Ingram (continuing)
  • VP Membership: Alan Spurgeon
  • VP Publicity: Michelle Dallas
  • Secretary: Mary Anderson (continuing)
  • Treasurer: David Hoover (continuing)
Appointed positions:
  • Equipment Managers: Bob Mulford & Darryn Lavery (continuing)
  • Outreach Coordinator: Wendy Froggatt (continuing)
  • Astronomical League Correspondent: David Hoover (continuing)
Want to nominate someone for a member spotlight or get more involved with SAS?
Send us an email at publicity@seattleastro.org 
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Copyright © 2022 Seattle Astronomical Society, All rights reserved.


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