February 2016

March 04, 2016: Monthly Meeting: Conjunctions and Alignments

Novice Meeting: 6:30PM
Novice Meeting Topic: 
Meteors and Meteorites
Novice Meeting Speaker: 
Bill Spizzirri
General Meeting: 7:15PM
General Meeting Topic: 
Conjunctions and Alignments
General Meeting Speaker: 
Justin McCollum, Lamar University
About the General Meeting Presentation

Conjunctions and Alignments are astronomical events in which a combination of planets, bright stars, the Earth's Moon, Asteroids, and in some case Human-made objects appear in a particular pattern in the night sky.

In the case of conjunctions such objects can appear as alignments, but in most cases they tend to form patterns that can be distinct against the usual background of constellations. Alignments are a special case of conjunctions where a collection of stars and certain celestial bodies residing within the solar system appear to connect together as a linear grouping usually along the plane of the ecliptic.

This presentation will be a general and detailed look at the nature of conjunctions and alignments.


At the Novice Session

Bill Spizzirri will speak about Meteors and Meteorites. Topics include the asteroid belt and comets as sources of meteors, why meteor showers occur, types of meteors, and impact craters. He may come with a little show and tell from his personal meteorite collection. Bill is always an entertaining speaker no matter the topic. You won’t want to miss this one!

Parking and Directions (View Map)

Meetings are held at the Trini Mendenhall Community Center, which is located at 1414 Wirt Rd, Houson, TX 77055.

PARKING INFORMATION: Free parking in the lot in front of the TMCC.


Map to Trini Mendenhall Community Center

HAS Presents Telescope to the Houston Public Library

Original article appears in GuideStar February, 2016.

by Bill Pellerin

The Houston Astronomical Society was selected from among the Astronomical League entrants to receive an Orion telescope to be donated to a local library. Part of the deal was that we were obliged to make modifications to the telescope to make it easier to operate and more robust. Bram Weisman took on the task of making those modifications, and did a terrific job completing the work.

With the work finished, we set up a meeting with Deputy Director for Library Administration at the downtown Houston Public Library to present the telescope. Bram and I attended, representing the HAS and met with Deputy Director Roosevelt Weeks, and Jennifer Sessa. The director and his staff were very excited to receive the telescope and are looking forward to using it to supplement their STEM outreach efforts.

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