An astronomy convention in Arizona

Posted by Michael Bakich
on Monday, October 27, 2014

Tucson, Arizona, once again will be the center of astronomy, only this time it will be focusing on the general public. On Saturday and Sunday, November 1 and 2, the Arizona Science and Astronomy Expo (ASAE) will occur at the Tucson Convention Center.

The doors open Saturday at 8:30 a.m. and the event goes until 6 p.m. Hours Sunday are 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tickets (available at the door or through Ticketmaster) for each day are $10 and allow access to all exhibits and talks. Kids 12 and under get in free.

The expo will feature exhibitors and manufacturers of astronomical products from around the world. Items on display will include telescopes, binoculars, mounts, cameras, domes, and related accessories. You can also shop for all your extras, including meteorites, flashlights, gifts, and much more.

Lots of interested people stopped by the Arizona Science and Astronomy Expo in 2013 to observe the Sun in a variety of wavelengths. // ASAE
In addition, the ASAE, in partnership with the Charlie Bates Solar Astronomy Project, will host the largest gathering of solar astronomy enthusiasts, vendors, and manufacturers in the history of the hobby. ASAE will bring together all things solar from across the astronomy world for one magical weekend in the Arizona Sun. This event will highlight the family-oriented nature of what has become the greatest and most accessible hobby in modern science — solar astronomy.

Throughout the two days, a variety of speakers will give informative and entertaining lectures. One highlight includes a panel beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday: “The Science in Science Fiction.” Organizers describe it thusly: "It wouldn’t be science fiction without the science. But how much of what we see in movies or read in books is plausible – or even possible? And does it really matter? 'The Science in Science Fiction' brings together a remarkable group of diversely creative panelists to tackle these questions with intelligence, humor, and … props."

For those of you with a desire to begin, or further your adventure in, astroimaging, be sure to set aside October 29, 30, and 31 for the Southwest Astrophotography Seminar, sponsored by OPT Telescopes. During the three days of the conference, more than a dozen of the top astroimagers on Earth will explain their techniques to help you get the most from your celestial images.

On Wednesday, October 29, the event will be held at Hotel Tucson City Center Innsuites, 475 N. Granada Avenue. Sessions Thursday and Friday will be at the Tucson Convention Center. Cost for the seminar is $200, which includes lunches.

I’ll be in Tucson for both events. I hope to see you there, too.

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