This week, we would like to highlight AAA member and Cedar Breaks astronomer, Matthias Schmitt!
Name: Matthias Schmitt
Hometown: Singen, Germany. But NYC has my heart and Southern Utah has my soul.
How did you get involved in AAA? Fellow AAA member, Dave Kiefer’s classes.
When did you become interested in astronomy? As a child reading Carl Sagan’s Cosmos and as an adult again after the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse.
When was the first time you looked through a telescope and what did you observe? I don’t remember. But when I was an adult and looked at Saturn I was blown away. It looked like a gimmick on the lens of the scope.
What is your favorite observable object from NYC? Your favorite observable object outside of NYC? Outside of NYC: M46. There is a planetary nebula (NGC 2438) hidden in it.
Do you have any equipment, and if so, what kind? 12″ Dobs SkyWatcher, 8″ and 6″ Celestron. Unistellar eVscope. Redcat 51, ES 127 and 80. ZWO monochrome and color shot cameras.
If you could have any equipment in the world, what would it be? There are some 40″ Dobs out there.
What astronomical experience/event sticks out in your head the most? The Total Solar Eclipse of August 21, 2017.
Are there any astronomy-related pieces of media that you’d like to recommend? Cosmos by Carl Sagan. It’s a classic.
Any other hobbies you’d like to share? I like hiking, mountain biking, spending time in nature.