A typical night sky as seen in Stellarium
An introduction to the widely-used free astronomy software program.
Visualize the sky from anywhere on Earth, in the Solar System, and in space at any time… past, present, and future.
Wednesdays, 7-9 PM, Online via Zoom. May 3, 10, 17, 24, 31; June 7.
IMPORTANT. This is a workshop class. There will be in-class practice and at-home assignments. It is expected you will have downloaded the free software and its User Guide before the first class. Without the application on your computer, you will gain little from the course and hinder the progress and discussion for other class members.
ASAP go to stellarium.org and download the latest version 23.1 for your device and separately, its User Guide. The Guide is listed as a PDF under the “Collaborate” menu on the home page.
Start exploring the software and the Guide early, before our first class.
May 3: Setup and Functionality
Installation, The Bible, The User Interface and Settings
The Struggles, Help
May 10: First Steps
First Steps, Time Machine, Sky and Viewing Options
May 17: Planning Sky Views on your Computer
Location and Time, Your Sky Window, How to plan for a session
May 24: Using Stellarium for Science
Equinox and Solstice, Equator, Tropics, Circles, Coordinate Systems
Eclipses and Comets, Planets and Moons, Exoplanets
The Solar System View, The Universe
May 31: Using the program for amateur astronomy observing
Telescope, Eyepiece, and Binocular Views, Astrophotography settings
Telescope Controls Available, Plugins , Scripts
June 7: Putting it all together
Review of the entire library of tools
5 minute presentations of individual astronomy projects (optional)
The Major League Stuff
Instructors– Matthias Schmitt has a Masters degree in astronomy and conducts observation sessions for the Park Service in Utah. He owns and runs a private night-sky touring service. He previously directed TV/cable programs on space science and adventures for young people. Matthias is an active AAA member, Eyepiece contributor, and frequent instructor. He was featured in a recent “AAA Sky” podcast., and travels far to view solar eclipses. Joel Gonzalez, a member of the AAA Classes Committee, will assist with the instruction. Irene Pease, AAA instructor and former AAA officer will also participate.