Current Year Meeting Program Subjects
The Williamson County Astronomy Club offers meeting programs covering topics of interest to both armchair astronomers and observers alike. Listed here are our plans for current year meeting programs. These are generally to be considered preliminary and we often have to move program dates to fit the needs of the presenters. Check back occasionally for updates to our program schedule.
Unless specified otherwise, all meetings will be held online from 7:00 PM until 9:00 PM on the first Thursday of each month.
January 2, 2020
No meeting was held in January due to the lack of an available meeting space.
February 13, 2020
A meeting was held in the Round Rock Downtowner Gallery. Aspects centering on how to get the club restarted were discussed.
March 5, 2020
"All About Dew Heaters"
Club member Stephen Hill will present a short program covering the ins and outs of using dew heaters. He will also talk about how they work and how they can be built as a Do-It-Yourself project including a controller for automation.
The remainder of the meeting will be used for ongoing discussion of restarting club operations and the division of labor to make it happen.
April 2, 2020
"No Meeting Scheduled"
There is currently no meeting scheduled for April.
May 7, 2020
"Measuring SNR in Astrophotographs"
Club member Steven Hill will discuss measuring the signal to noise ratio in astrophotographs.
June 4, 2020
"Sketching the Herschel 400"
Dr. Mark Bottorff of Southwestern University will present some of the sketches from his long term project to observe and draw all objects in the Herschel 400 catalog.
July 2, 2020
"Members' Show and Tell"
Multiple members will give short talks covering a topic of their choice. They may show and discuss smaller new projects they have worked on, new equipment, new books, or observing session results in the form of field reports or astro-photography they have done.
August 6, 2020
"Astronomy in Chile"
Club member Rob Pettengill will talk about his 2019 trip to Chile as part of the Astronomy in Chile Educator Ambassadors Program.
September 3, 2020
"iPhone Shallow Astroimaging"
Club president Bruce Campney will show large collection of astro images taken with an iPhone.
October 1, 2020
"A Method for Comparing Imaging Systems"
Club member John Upton will present a quantitative method for comparing imaging systems. The effects of telescope choice, sensor choice and additional optics are modeled so that very different systems can be easily compared. A subset of the methodology can also be used to compare visual systems.
November 5, 2020
"Deep Sky Imaging Tools"
Club member Stephen Hill will demonstrate the tools and methods he uses to capture and process Deep Sky astro-images. The tools include Dcraw, Deep Sky Stacker, and Star Tools. The emphasis will be on Star Tools.
December 3, 2020
"Deep Sky Image Processing"
Club member David Ault will demonstrate the some of the methods and 'tricks' he uses to get the most out of his astro-images.
January 7, 2021
"Book Report - American Eclipse"
Club member Jim Reimund will review this book. The book's subtitle is "A Nation's Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World." It is the story of an 1878 total solar eclipse that inspired America. The story features Thomas Edison, Maria Mitchell, James Craig Watson, and a planet called Vulcan. The book is the winner of the 2018 AIP Science Communication Award in Science Writing.
February 4, 2021
Meeting Subject TBD
March 4, 2021
Meeting Subject TBD
We are always seeking interesting guest speakers and topics. If you have a subject to present, or would like to suggest a topic for a future meeting program, please email us so that we may try to accommodate the request.