Feb 11

EAAE launches "Catch a Star"

EAAE has launched a new edition of the astronomical contest “Catch a star!” .

“Catch a Star!” is a contest that has been held as a result of the collaboration between the European Association for Astronomy Education (EAAE) and European Southern Observatory (ESO). This project

“Catch a Star!” includes more than one competition, so there is something for everyone. The idea of the program is to encourage students to work together, to learn about astronomy and discover things for themselves by researching information.

The goal of the European Astronomy Contest "Catch a Star" is to stimulate the creativity and independent work of students, to strengthen and expand their astronomical knowledge and skills, and to help spread the use of information technologies in the educational process.

We invite for participation in the contest all students who have studied in European countries during the current year and have a strong interest in astronomy and information technology.

The contest includes developing and presenting astronomy projects online.

The students will write a report about an astronomical object, phenomenon, observation, scientific problem, or theory, etc. The students may also wish to include practical activities such as their own observations. They will create the project's report as PDF document and upload it online on the website's application form.

The student teams who prepare the best projects will receive exciting prizes.

For the first time we can provide to student teams the opportunity to work as real astronomers.

The special grand prize is one observational session on the 2-meter Faulkes telescopes.

The Director of the Team of the 2-meter Faulkes telescopes project will provide one observational session on the Faulkes telescopes in Hawaii and Australia. We are very grateful to Sarah Roberts, the astronomer from the team of the 2-meter Faulkes telescope project for her help and collaboration.

The Director of the National Astronomical Observatory “Rozhen” in Bulgaria will provide three prizes, which are free remote 3x60 minutes observational sessions with the 2-meter RCC telescope; the 50/70 cm Schmidt telescope and the Cassegrain telescope “Zeiss-600”.

The Director of the Educational office of ESO will provide three very interesting astronomical books and 10 astronomical DVDs.

We are very grateful to these astronomical organizations for their exclusive prizes and we are convinced that the students will work hard to win.

The deadline for participants to fill the form with their work is Monday, 1st July 2011, at 17:00 Central European Time.

We wish students success in their work and an enjoyable experience!

Project's webpage: http://www.eaae-astronomy.org/cas/

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Feb 11

"Lover's Island" seen from Space

Source: ESA

Image credits: JAXA, ESA

As we approach Valentine's Day, Space Agencies do their best to gives images that are related to the occasion. After NASA's announcement of the close encounter between  the close encounter between the Stardust spacecraft and comet Tempel 1, ESA has today released a beautiful image of a romantically shaped  island.

The small heart-shaped island of Galešnjak is featured in this image acquired by ALOS – Japan's four-tonne Earth observation satellite. The 500 m-wide island is situated off the Croatian coast in the Adriatic Sea.

Since its recent rise in popularity due to satellite images, the privately owned island has become a big hit in the media and with romantic tourists. Local media report the owner has received numerous requests from couples wanting to celebrate St Valentine’s Day there. (read more)

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