Mt Stromlo Observatory World Record Night

Presented by ANU College of Science

Important information about the weather

Update for ANU Canberra site only,Thursday 20/8 - Regardless of the weather we will be proceeding. Our friends at the Bureau of Meteorology anticipate rain-free skies until about 10pm. As such, we have decided to push the World Record attempt for Most People Stargazing at a Single Site forward to 7.10pm to take advantage of the clear weather. The ANU site will still participate in the nationwide record attempt at 8.30pm. Please download a copy of the updated program and map here

If you haven't already, please make sure you register ASAP. In the next few hours you will receive an email advising you which stargazing group you will be in for the official World Record attempts. Please keep an eye out and make note of your group number. If you haven't got a group number come at see us as the Main Desk near the Main Stage/Chifley Library on arrival.

Live streaming

We'll be lives treaming Associate Professor Charley Lineweaver's talk here at 6pm and Professor Brian Schmidt's talk here at 7.30pm

Important information about telescopes

We have sold out of the small telescopes! This might be a nice excuse to buy a pair of binoculars (which count towards the record) or new telescope. Even a small, cheap pair of kids binoculars, which are $10 at Toys r Us count. If you bring your own equipment, please still register so you count towards the World Record (it is free to do). Make sure you download a copy of the event map here.

Update 19/8 - We just got confirmation that a camera with a telephoto zoom lens can be used as long as it has a greater focal length than a normal lens for the given sensor/film size. If you choose to bring this, select the bring your own telescope option when you register here.

Call for volunteers

We're looking for volunteers to help perform the very important job of counting attendees on the night. It will only take 30 minutes of your time from about 8.25-8.55pm and you'll leave knowing that you played a vital role in helping us break the World Record. Please email to register your interest. Unfortunately because of the Guinness rules only non-ANU staff members can volunteer, however students (as long as they are not from the Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics) are ok. 

What record are you trying to break?

On Friday 21 August 2015 Mt. Stromlo Observatory will be leading Australia in attempting to break two Guinness World Records - Most People Stargazing at a Single Site (Canberra) and Most People Stargazing Across Multiple Sites in a Country (Australia).

How can I participate?

To set the record, everyone who wants to participate will need to be looking through a telescope at a pre-determined time during the evening. If you are planning on bringing your own telescope or binoculars (phones don't count sorry) we ask you still please register for the event to help us with numbers. 

We suggest you download a copy of the event map here.

What if I'm not in Canberra?

There are currently over 40 sites registered to take part in the attempt to break the World Record for Most People Stargazing Across Multiple Sites in a Country. Check out our map to join your nearest one or email to host your own event. 

Mt. Stromlo Observatory Raffle

As part of this great event we will be running a raffle with all proceeds going to the Peter McGregor Scholarship Fund.  

Professor Peter McGregor passed away earlier this year after a battle with cancer, and was well known through the astronomy community for his scientific research and astronomical instrumentation.  He was the Project Scientist for both NIFS and GSAOI, two instruments built at Mt. Stromlo for the 8-meter Gemini telescope in Chile.  He was also the Project Scientists for GMTIFS, one of the first instruments planned to go on the 25-meter Giant Magellan Telescope.  The scholarship fund in his name will support PhD students who aspire to not only be great astronomers, but instrument builders too, and can continue in the path the Peter forged.  

1st Prize: Private Stargazing + Tour at Mt. Stromlo Observatory for Winner + 9 Guests (Value $600)

2nd Prize: Two (2) Tickets to 'An Evening with Neil deGrasse Tyson' at Llewellyn Hall on Sunday, 23 August (Value $250)

3rd Prize: A signed bottle of 2013 Maipenrai wine, made by the 2011 Nobel Laureate in Physics Professor Brian Schmidt (Value $40) 

Public lectures

Through out the evening we will be running public lectures in the Manning Clark Centre with Professor Brian Schmidt AC, Professor Lisa Kewley and more. Register for the event at Eventbrite to stay up-to-date with announcements about the public lectures schedule and more. 

Raffle terms and conditions

Permit No: ACT R 15/00244 You must be 18+ to enter. Winners will be announced at the ANU event on the evening of the World Record Stargazing (8pm 21 August 2015) and will be contacted after the event. Winners of the two tickets to Neil deGrasse Tyson must be available to make the Canberra show on the following Sunday (23 August 2015). Winners of the Private Stargazing Evening will be contacted by Mt. Stromlo to organize a date. Winners do not have to be present to win. RSAA staff and students are not eligible. 

You can check out the weather at Mt Stromlo using our all sky camera:

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