Events are open to all members and the general public. Sign up for email event updates by registering with Night Sky Network.
Most of our events happen at the Chabot Space and Science Center. Get directions here.
Next General Meeting
Meetings are held in Virtual Space
Join exoplanet astronomer Rob Zellem, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, as he discusses how we find and characterize exoplanets, planets outside of our own Solar System, with the ultimate goal of detecting signatures of life. He will also discuss current and near future ground- and space-based missions, such as NASA’s Hubble, TESS, and James Webb space telescopes, and a new citizen science project called Exoplanet Watch, which features amateur astronomers conducting observations of exoplanets to help use these resources more efficiently and to discover new planets. He will also cover near-future missions, such as NASA’s next flagship mission, the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope and its Coronagraph Instrument, which will take photographs of exoplanets and will establish the technologies needed for the next generation of NASA missions that will be designed to discover alien life.
About the Speaker
Rob is an exoplanet astronomer at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory working on ground- and space-based observations of the atmospheres of exoplanets, planets outside of our Solar System. Rob is a member of the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope’s Coronograph Instrument (CGI; an instrument that will directly-image exoplanets) Project Science Team and is the lead of developing its Science Calibration Plan. He is the JPL Commissioning Lead of NESSI, a new multi-object spectrograph at Palomar Observatory that will study tens of these alien worlds. He has been involved in benchmarking the performance through simulations of NASA and ESA exoplanet-dedicated missions such as CASE, the NASA contribution to ESA’s ARIEL mission, and the Astro2020 missions Origins Space Telescope and HabEx. He is also the Project Lead of Exoplanet Watch, a citizen science project that will aid in the characterization of exoplanets.
Rob was born just outside the Philadelphia city limits but grew up in Hendersonville, TN. He went to Villanova University where he graduated with his Bachelor of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics, minoring in Physics, Mathematics, and Classics, and getting an Honors Concentration. His love of travel and learning about other cultures brought him to University College London in England where he got his MSc in Space Science. He then moved out west to Tucson, AZ, where he received his PhD in Planetary Sciences from the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory at the University of Arizona. He is currently staff at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. When he’s not observing exoplanets, he enjoys jazz piano, cooking, trying not to kill all his plants, brewing beer, playing ice hockey, and fantasizing about retiring to work at Disney.
This talk will be available live and publicly at:
Telescope Makers’ Workshop
The Telescope Maker’s Workshop is one of few regularly scheduled such workshops in the world! Every Friday from 7 to 10 PM, amateur telescope makers from the bay area meet at the Chabot Space & Science Center and learn how to grind, shape, polish, and figure mirrors for reflecting telescopes, under the guidance of EAS volunteers. The workshop is free; participants pay only for the mirror blanks and grinding tools, which generally cost between $100-$300, depending on the size of the mirror. All the instruction, grinding grit, testing equipment, and camaraderie is free of charge! For more information, email Richard Ozer at [email protected], or come by the workshop any Friday to see what it’s all about.
In person events are more limited because of COVID, but are being scheduled for schools and other community institutions. Contact us also for possible virtual events, or visit http://www.chabotspace.org for scheduled public virtual telescope viewing events]
EAS sends volunteers to schools, libraries, and anywhere curious aspiring astronomers gather. EAS volunteers bring their own equipment or borrow telescopes. Students, parents, and teachers are always thrilled to look through the telescopes and ask questions. You’ll meet all sorts of interesting people and provide a unique and inspiring experience to kids and parents who may have never looked through a telescope before. Find our next event on the calendar above.
Inquire about and request visits by e-mailing EAS Outreach Coordinator Raymond Howard at [email protected]. Visit our outreach page to find out about upcoming events.
Members Only Viewing Nights (MOVN)
[In person events are more limited than in the past because of COVID, visit http://www.chabotspace.org for virtual telescope viewing events]
Once a quarter, we schedule a Members Only Viewing Night at the Chabot Telescope Deck for both EAS and Chabot members. This is our opportunity to look through Chabot’s historic instruments and research telescope, as well as bring our own equipment to share in a more quiet venue. The schedule for MOVN will appear in the event calendar below.
Barcroft High Altitude Star Party
Reservations for the Eastbay Astronomical Society’s Barcroft High-Altitude Star Party are now open to members of the EAS, the Tri-Valley Stargazer’s, and the Mount Diablo Astronomical Society clubs. This year’s event will be held from Sunday August 13th through noon on Saturday August 19th (with departure by noon on Saturday). That’s six nights.
Before sending payments for reservations ($90 per night, per person), even if you’ve been there before, please contact Don Saito FIRST ([email protected]) to ensure the dates you wish to attend are available. You will also be asked to read the Barcroft Writeup, as it provides the information you’ll need to have a safe, comfortable stay, and what is expected of guests to this University of California research facility.
You must also review and sign the White Mountains Research Center COVID Terms and Conditions and Liability Waiver. You can scan and email the signed copy to [email protected]. You may also mail the signed document to EAS, PO Box 18635, Oakland, CA, 94619-0635
So, four steps to apply:
1. Email photo evidence of Covid-19 vaccination/booster to [email protected]
2. Attest in writing/email that you read the current Barcroft Writeup and COVID Terms.
3. Email Don Saito at the above address to check reservation availability and make reservation.
4. Pay the number of days reserved via PayPal or check/snailmail.
Space at Barcroft is limited to a maximum of 12 people per day, so to ensure you get the days you want, make your reservations early.
Barcroft is one the premier amateur astronomy view sites in the world, and it’s slightly less than a day’s drive from the Bay Area to its location in the White Mountains.
Golden State Star Party
This year’s GSSP is scheduled for June 14 – June 18 near Adin, California. For more information and online registration, visit https://goldenstatestarparty.org
Spring Calstar is scheduled for April 19 – April 23 at Lake San Antonio. For more information visit https://calstar.observers.org/
Header photo by EAS member Alan Roche.