MEETING: All are invited to our next meeting on Wednesday, May 22, 2013, @ 7:00 p.m. in the Tahoe Room in the Lake View Clubhouse.The program deals with "Other Galaxies - Island Universes" .
In the early 20th century the faint, spiral nebulae were believed to be clouds of gas within our Milky Way Galaxy. Others boldly suggested they might be huge collections of stars far outside our Galaxy - "island universes".
In 1920 a debate between Heber Curtis and Harlow Shapely on the scale of the universe occurred. The issues were : (1) if our Galaxy is all that exists, the Universe is big but not huge, or (2) if spiral nebulae are actually galaxies, the Universe is incredibly vast. The debate wasn't resolved but Curtis believed spiral nebulae were separate from our Galaxy.
Edwin Hubble in the mid-1920's resolved the controversy with his identification of Cephid variable stars in the spiral nebulae. Cephid variables period could be correlated with their brightness allowing an estimate of distance. In particular, the Cephid variable in the Andromeda Nebula looked faint and distant. Given the size of the nebula, he deduced it was a huge system with billions of stars.
At the meeting you also will hear an update on the sky above Sun City by the Club's Chief Observer. Breaking astronomical news is also presented. No prior knowledge or skill is assumed at our meetings. Our motto is " There are no dumb questions except those that aren't asked for fear of looking ignorant". Science is driven by ignorance, so step up and join the crowd. We only see and have knowledge of about 5% of what's out there.
STAR PARTY: All SCPD residents and guests are invited Saturday, May 18, 2013 @ 8:30 p.m. The ringed planet Saturn takes center stage. Virgo and Leo anchor the spring constellations.
We will meet at our usual location as noted below.
STAR PARTY LOCATION:
We will meet at the usual location @ the East greenbelt off Donny Circle just south of Alliance Way.
ALL SUN CITY RESIDENTS AND GUESTS ARE WELCOME!