HAO Participates in Another Super Science Saturday

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Friday, November 11, 2016

On November 5, 2016 UCAR/NCAR held its annual Super Science Saturday event at the Mesa Lab in Boulder. Kids of all ages were treated to a variety of interactive exhibits including hands-on activities, Science Wizard shows and demonstrations that illustrated fundamental scientific discovery in a fun and engaging environment.

High Altitude Observatory (HAO) scientists and engineers were on hand with a variety of experiments and equipment that included: a solar telescope for viewing the Sun’s chromosphere in an emission line of Hydrogen known as H-alpha; a solar eclipse experiment to educate the public about the Great American Eclipse that will occur on August 21, 2017; experiments that highlighted various properties of light using an Infrared camera, ultraviolet and optical emission lamps; numerous hands-on experiments for learning about magnetism and how it plays a fundamental role in the production of Space Weather. Approximately a thousand visitors attended the event and a wonderful time was had by all. Phil Judge, Dennis Gallagher, Scott Sewell and Ricky Egeland of HAO devised the eclipse experiment that beautifully illustrated how and why solar eclipses occur and allowed the public to experience the difference between seeing a partial solar eclipse and a total solar eclipse. Dennis Gallagher of HAO set up and manned the solar telescope that treated the public to a view of the beautiful solar chromosphere, and scientists Ricky Egeland, Matthias Rempel, Maulik Patel, Wenxian Li, Tong Dang, Alberto Sainz-Dalda, and Joan Burkepile explained the science behind the experiments and how scientists use light and magnetism to study our Sun, the Earth and the Universe.

HAO would like to thank the UCAR Center for Science Education for making Super Science Saturday possible. They also provided eclipse glasses, ‘rainbow’ glasses and 3D postcards for the public as well as many magnetic experiments, and UV and emission lamps. HAO is also grateful to Francisco (Tito) Salas and the Fiske Planetarium at the University of Colorado for providing the infrared camera and to Steele Hill at the NASA Sciences and Exploration Directorate Education / Outreach for providing eclipse glasses, and NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory posters and 3D postcards.

NCAR Science Saturday image
Ricky Egeland demonstrates a solar eclipse experiment to educate the public about the Great American Eclipse that will occur on August 21, 2017
Super Science Saturday image
Alberto Sainz-Dalda instructs a young girl on how to use equipment that simulates a total eclipse of the Sun
Super Science Saturday image
Tong Dang, visiting scientist, talks with young participants to NCAR's annual Super Science Saturday
Super Science Saturday image
Wenxian Li, visiting scientist, answers questions about solar magnetism
Super Science Saturday image
Matthias Rempel demonstrates the heat sensing equipment or thermal imager
Super Science Saturday image
Hands on experiments that highlight various properties of light
Sample template image
Close up of the image produced from the thermal imager
Maulik Patel image
Maulik Patel, visiting scientist, explains the properties of optical emission lines to participants
Dennis Gallagher image
Dennis Gallagher guides young participant in using the sun viewing telescope

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