Open House / Drop In
9:00 PM to Midnight
October 1, 2003
An invitation from Dr. Richard Williamon, Director, Emory Planetarium
Now that the record-breaking close approach of Mars on August
27th has come and gone, you may wonder if Mars viewing is over
for the season. The answer is a resounding "NO!" Not
only has Mars remained a stunning object to the naked eye and
through the telescope, it also has moved conveniently into the
early evening sky for easier viewing.
As successful and well-attended as our "Mars is Coming"
events were in late August, we have discovered that many in the
Emory community missed Mars completely. At its current distance,
Mars is simply too spectacular not to give everyone a second opportunity
to visit our facility and meet Mars in person. So, the physics
department would like to invite you to an encore, "A Farewell
to Mars," on the evening of October 1, 2003.
Planetarium Open House:
Wednesday, October 1, 2003: All members of the Emory community
(Emory trustees, faculty, staff, families, students and your guests)
are invited to drop into the planetarium between 9PM - Midnight
to see the live video feed of Mars direct from Emory's Cassegrain
telescope. This live, closed-circuit image of Mars will be projected
directly from our observatory and into the planetarium in real
time. This affords visitors a large and beautiful view of Mars
as it hovers in the sky above. If atmospheric conditions do not
permit us to get a clear image, visitors will enjoy some of our
very recently recorded video of the "peach planet."
Weather permitting, visitors will also be taken up to the
observation deck and observatory where they will see the 24-inch
telescope in action and also do some additional viewing. Even
though Mars made its closest pass alongside earth in late August,
it is moving away from us at a slower rate than its rate of approach;
so, viewing conditions are still ideal.
This is not a planetarium show and no RSVP is needed;
just drop in to see the live Mars image and watch it as long as
If you have any questions, contact Info.Astronomy: email@example.com.
Location: The Emory Planetarium, 3nd floor, Math and Science
Center, 400 Dowman Drive. Please use the entrance directly across
from White Hall.
Note: As significant at this event may seem and
as beautiful as this event truly is, Mars and Earth have been
closer in the past and will be closer in the future. Just hang
in there for an even closer look in the year 2287. But before
you conclude that this current passage of Mars is your only possible
chance to observe Mars, please realize that we pass close to Mars
every 2 years and 2 months. And because of the shapes of the two
orbits, we pass closest to Mars every 15 - 17 years. This recent
close passage was only slightly closer than the one in 1988, and
there will be several (perhaps 5) such very favorable close passages
during an average human lifetime. However, the current circumstance
provides the ideal view, and we truly hope to see you on October