Welcome to Houston Astronomical Society

Founded in 1955, Houston Astronomical Society is an active community of enthusiastic amateur and professional astronomers with over 60 years of history in the Houston area. Through education and outreach, our programs promote science literacy and astronomy awareness. We meet on the first Friday of each month at the University of Houston. Membership has a variety of benefits, including access to a secure dark site west of Houston, a telescope loaner program, and much more. Joining is simple; you can sign up online, by mail or in person at a monthly meeting.

July 06, 2018: July Monthly Membership Meeting

Novice Meeting: 7:00PM
Novice Meeting Topic: 
Observing the Planets
Novice Meeting Speaker: 
VP Joe Khalaf
General Meeting: 8:00PM
General Meeting Topic: 
Building of the Dark Site and TSP wrap-up
General Meeting Speaker: 
Steve Goldberg
About the General Meeting Presentation

One of the best assets of the Houston Astronimical Society is the Columbus Dark Site. First aquired in 1979, the land has been transformed from heavy underbrush to an astronomy village. Tonite’s presentation will show this transformation over the last 38+ years.

Also on the agenda is a wrap-up of the latest Texas Star Party, including impressions from first-time attendees.

Parking and Directions (View Map)

Meetings are held in the Science & Research building at the University of Houston Main Campus. The novice meeting is in room 116, the general meeting is in room 117.

NOTE NEW PARKING INFORMATION: Parking is available in lot 15C. Refer to the Google Map below for directions. This parking is available from 6:30 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. on the Friday night of the HAS meeting.

This parking is free. If you get a notice from the UH campus police on the night of the meeting, call the UH Security office and let them know that this area has been made available on HAS meeting night by the Parking Department.

Map to Parking

Asterisms – Kemble 2, Mini-Cassiopeia, Alessi J18350+7223

By: Steve Goldberg

Asterism: a grouping of stars that form a recognizable pattern.
Constellation: Drako
Right Ascension: R.A.: 18h 35m 00.0s
Declination: + 72° 23' 00"
Magnitude:  7 to 9
Size: 20’
Found in the constellation Drako is an asterism of stars in the shape of a “W”. It is officially called “Kemble 2”, but is sometimes referenced as a “Mini-Cassiopeia”.
It is located near the star Chi Drako, in the “bend” of Drako the dragon.

This was first named by Father Lucian Kemble in August, 1994 in a note to astronomer Arlid Moland. It was Moland who gave it the “Mini Cassiopeia” name.  Independently of Kemble and Moland, Brazilian amateur Bruno Alessi cataloged this object as Alessi J18350+7223”.

(This history taken from the book “Star Clusters” by Brent Archinal and Steven Hynes)


FREE Public Star Parties in June

The Houston Astronomical Society has a series of free star parties scheduled for the latter part of June at Midtown Park, and you’re invited!

  • The first star party is the Solstice Star Party, which is held on – you guessed it – the June solstice.  The June solstice is the day when the northern hemisphere gets the most daylight in the entire year, and we’re celebrating on June 21 from 10am – noon by observing our sun.  We’ll have special telescopes and filters that allow us to safely observe the sun in different wavelengths, so you’ll see views of our sun in ways you’ve probably never seen before.


  • Additionally, on June 27, we’re going to have our Lord of the Rings star party to celebrate our solar system’s ringed planet – Saturn!  We’ll observe several celestial objects from 7pm – 10pm on June 27, including Jupiter, the moon, and others, but the real star of the show this night will be Saturn, our own Lord of the Rings.  Midtown Park will also be airing the Lord of the Rings movie while we do our observing, so you can catch a flick and see through the telescopes there that night.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email our Outreach group!




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