TACNY John Edson Sweet Lecture Series – Brief History And The Future Of Biotechnology

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Onondaga Community College, 101 Whitney Applied Technology Center

NOTE: The lecture will be starting 30 minutes later than usual.

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Adam Lowe Ph.D., Principal Research Scientist at SRC, will present a “Brief History and the Future of Biotechnology”, a talk about how biotechnology has shaped modern society and how it will affect us in the future. People interested in learning more about Biotechnology are invited to attend the free Sweet Lecture presentation on Tuesday, May 14, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in Room 101 of the Whitney Applied Technology Center on the Onondaga Community College campus. Networking starts at 6:00 p.m., the speaker is introduced at 6:30 p.m., the presentation is slated to run from 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., and the event ends at 8:30 p.m. following questions from the audience. Admission is free and open to the public. Walk-ins are welcome, but we ask that people RSVP by emailing sweet.lecture@tacny.org by May 10, 2013.

Dr. Adam Lowe is a Principal Research Scientist for the Biotechnology group at SRC. The biotechnology program has active research areas in microbial engineering, bio-nanotechnology, and small molecule detection. The program strives to provide opportunities for innovation and collaboration, both internally and with U.S. Government stakeholders. Dr. Lowe holds a patent on SNP detection using ligase detection reaction coupled surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy and has many other bio-nanotechnology patents pending. Dr. Lowe received a B.S. in biology from Salisbury University and his Ph.D. in microbiology from Cornell University, where he was a Presidential Life Sciences Fellow and Nanobiotechnology Integrated Research Fellow. He was named one of the 30 Most Dynamic Graduates of his class from Cornell University.

Technology Alliance of Central New York

Founded in 1903 as the Technology Club of Syracuse, the nonprofit Technology Alliance of Central New York’s mission is to facilitate community awareness, appreciation, and education of technology; and to collaborate with like-minded organizations across Central New York.

For more information about TACNY, visit www.tacny.org.

CNYO Observing Log: ShoppingTown Mall, 17 April 2013


Greetings fellow astrophiles!

Our most recent solar session was organized by Larry Slosberg via facebook:

“Any up for an impromptu Lunar and solar observing session at Shoppingtown Mall at about 6pm? I’ll be heading to Scotch and Sirloin for a CNY Skeptics in the Pub at 7pm (you’re welcome to join that too) and thought, it’s such a nice clear night. Might be nice to get a couple scopes out and maybe get some people as they are leaving the mall.”

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The approximate location (at center) of the session.

With Larry’s 8″ Meade Schmidt–Cassegrain Telescope (SCT) (and homemade Baader solar filter) and my Coronado PST in tow, we hosted a 90 minute session before the CNY Skeptics meet-up with about one dozen attendees (and a curious ShoppingTown Mall security guard) and our two most prominent celestial neighbors – the Sun and Moon.


Larry and attendees #1.


The Moon was a 7-day-old waxing crescent on the 17th and high in the sky at 6:00 p.m. While Larry had his Baader filter at the ready, he ended up spending most of his observing time (due to crowd interest) examining all of the blue-on-grey surface detail that this late afternoon session afforded. A later evening image of the waxing crescent (from two days prior) is shown below from local astrophotographer John Giroux.


The waxing crescent Moon on 15 April 2013. Photo by John Giroux.


The Coronado PST filters nearly all of the incoming light from the Sun, making it comfortably observable and making anything else seen through the Coronado (short of a blindingly bright hydrogen lamp) pitch black. So, by necessity, my part of the session was dedicated solely to the Sun as it set in the tree-lined western DeWitt sky.


Larry and attendees #2.

The Coronado brings out sunspot, surface, and prominence detail using a 1.0 angstrom hydrogen-alpha filter (which is to say, that’s the only wavelength of light that gets through). The views are composed of ever-so-slightly different shades of red, but the detail is obvious with proper focus, magnification, and filter adjustment. The Sun was busy with prominences and highlighted on the surface by Sunspot 1745, shown at lower center in the image below from Ted Adachi’s submission to spaceweather.com that day.


The Sun, by Ted Adachi.

Over the course of 90 minutes of observing, I learned two valuable lessons for the Coronado. 1. Reducing some of the incoming light does a bit to help bring out some solar detail. Even covering the objective 50% produced detailed views that helped enhance some of the surface detail (as Larry demonstrates below). 2. The perfect eyepiece for filling the Coronado with a view of the Sun lies somewhere between 7 and 10 mm (a point that will be addressed in an upcoming discussion about NEAF 2013).


Larry demonstrates the light-block maneuver with a piece of reflective aluminum/bubble wrap.

With short notice, small scopes, and a clear sky, the daytime becomes just as interesting and enjoyable a time for an introductory sidewalk astronomy session as the night does. Young kids and adults alike get to take in a brand new view of our nearest neighbors while being able to see the scopes that make these views possible. And it is much easier to find missing eyepiece caps!

CNYO Brochure – How The Night Sky Moves

Greetings fellow astrophiles!

In preparation for upcoming 2013 lecture and observing sessions, we have put together instructional brochures to help introduce the Night Sky to attendees. The second of these, entitled “How The Night Sky Moves,” is provided below in PDF format. This brochure will be available at our combined lecture/observing sessions, but feel free to bring your own copy (or the PDF on a tablet with a good red acetate cover!).

Download: How The Night Sky Moves (v4)

NOTE: These brochures are made better by your input. If you find a problem, have a question, or have a suggestion (bearing in mind these are being kept to one two-sided piece of paper), please contact CNYO at info@cnyo.org.



How The Night Sky Moves

Why Polaris Doesn’t (Seem To) Move

“Like the Sun, the Night Sky appears to rise in the East and set in the West (which is a result of the Earth spinning from West to East).”

The Circumpolar Constellations

“Their orientations due to Earth’s rotation may change, but they are ALWAYS VISIBLE IN THE NIGHT SKY – SO LEARN THESE SIX FIRST!”

Zodiac, Ecliptic, Solstices, Equinoxes

“The constellations of the Zodiac are special because they mark the apparent path the Sun and planets take across the sky as the Earth revolves around the Sun.”

One Earth Day vs. One Earth Rotation

“There are 24 hours in a day, but the Earth takes 4 minutes less than 24 hours to make one full rotation.”

Constellation Movement By The Hour

“With 24 hours in a day, the sky turns 15 degrees (1/24th of 360 degrees) per hour. During a 4-hour observing session, circumpolar constellations will then appear to move counterclockwise (East-to-West) 60 degrees – 1/6th of a circle – around Polaris.”

Constellation Movement During The Year

“After 12 months, the Earth (and our view of the Night Sky) almost returns to the same position it was the year before. Why almost?”