UTSA ‘Friday Nights, Celestial Lights’ series explores the universe April 19

stars

Pistol star, one of the galaxy’s brightest star in the Milky Way’s core (Photo: European Space Agency)

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(April 15, 2013) -- UTSA faculty astronomers invite the community to attend "Friday Nights, Celestial Lights," featuring Eric Schlegel, UTSA Vaughan Family Professor of Physics and Astronomy. Free and open to the public, the family-friendly astronomy event is at 7:30 p.m., Friday, April 19 in Science Building Room 2.02.02 on the UTSA Main Campus.

Schlegel will discuss the newest research on the nature of the universe from the European Planck mission. The Planck team results released last month reveal that the universe is a bit older than originally thought and is composed of more dark matter and less dark energy.

Following Schlegel's presentation, weather permitting, attendees can view the night sky using UTSA's telescopes including a 15-inch telescope and several 8-inch Cassegrain telescopes. Night viewing will be from the fourth-floor patio of the Science Building, which is wheelchair accessible. Currently, the Orion Nebula, the Pleiades and Jupiter are all visible in the night sky.

"Friday Nights, Celestial Lights" lectures and viewings began in 2009 as a celebration of the International Year of Astronomy, commemorating the 400th anniversary of Galileo Galilei using a telescope to observe the heavens. The UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy hosts the recurring program on the third Friday of each month when UTSA is in session.

For more information, contact Eric Schlegel, UTSA Vaughan Family Professor, at 210-458-6425 or Mark Jurena, UTSA astronomy lecturer, at 210-458-4922.