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Learn about dark energy at free Observatory open house

Feb 5, 2024
The IU Kokomo Observatory with snow
The IU Kokomo Observatory with snow

Learn more about a 10-year (and counting) project to measure the expansion of the universe, at the Indiana University Kokomo Observatory’s February open house.


Patrick Motl, professor of physics, will begin the open house at 7 p.m. Sunday, February 11 with a presentation about dark energy, including recent results from the Dark Energy Survey project, an international collaborative effort to map hundreds of millions of galaxies, detect thousands of supernovae, and find patterns of cosmic structure that will reveal the nature of the mysterious dark energy that is accelerating the expansion of our universe.


After the presentation, stargazers may be able to see Jupiter and highlights from the winter triangle like the Orion nebula through the Observatory’s telescopes, a six-inch Takahashi refracting telescope and a 16-inch Meade reflecting telescope mounted together. The Takahashi provides exceptionally sharp images of planets, while the Meade allows viewers to see fainter objects in the sky, due to its larger light-collecting area.


Observation will continue through 9 p.m. weather permitting.


The Observatory is at 2660 S. Washington St., Kokomo. Free parking is available on campus.


Motl is also hosting a series of events leading up to the April 8, 2024 total solar eclipse. Dark as Dusk includes sessions with background on the eclipse, photography and videography, an evening with Bad Astronomer author Phil Plait, multicultural perspectives on eclipses, and an eclipse viewing opportunity at the Observatory. Advance registration is required. For complete details and to register go to

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