KOKOMO, Ind. — The New Horizons mission’s flyby of Pluto will be the focus of discussion at the Indiana University Kokomo Observatory, during the first open house of the fall semester on Sunday, Sept. 13.
Patrick Motl, assistant professor of physics, will present information about NASA’s New Horizons mission, which launched in January 2006, and made its closest approach to Pluto in July 2015.
After the presentation, stargazers can use the telescopes to view the night sky. Highlights in the evening sky include Saturn, the only planet to be visible from the evening sky, Alberio, M13 the great cluster in Hercules, and M57 the ring nebula in Lyra.
The Observatory’s telescopes are 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.
The open house begins at 8 p.m. and observations will extend until 10 p.m., weather permitting. The open house is free and open to the public in the Observatory, 105 E. Rebecca Lane. Free parking is available on campus.
Story written by Kambren Stanley. Kambren is a student writer in the Office of Media & Marketing.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.