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Observe planets, constellations at Observatory open house

Feb 3, 2020
A person looks into a telescope.
A person looks into a telescope.

KOKOMO, Ind. – Learn about brown dwarf stars and view the planets, at a free Indiana University Kokomo Observatory open house.

Patrick Motl, associate professor of physics, will host the event from 7 to 9 p.m. Sunday, February 9, starting with an update on relatively new celestial bodies, such as brown dwarf stars. He also will present highlights and stories in recent astronomical news.

After the presentation, those attending will be able to view several different planets, including Mercury, Venus, and Uranus. The planets will be in view around sunset. In addition to the planets, there will be a full moon and highlights from the Winter Hexagon, such as the Orion Nebula and Pleiades.

The Winter Hexagon is a pattern of planets that form a hexagon in the northern hemisphere celestial sphere. It includes the Orion’s belt constellation, one of the easiest to identify.

The Observatory features two telescopes — a Takahashi refracting telescope and a Meade reflecting telescope. The two are mounted together and able to rotate as needed.

The open house is available to the public at the IU Kokomo Observatory, 2660 Washington Street. Free parking is available on campus.

Story written by Braden Dunlap. Braden is an intern in the Office of Media and Marketing.

Indiana University Kokomo celebrates 75 years as north central Indiana’s choice for higher education.

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