If you enjoy astronomy, convention centers, and knocking elbows with top-notch scientists, you’ll be thrilled to hear that the American Astronomical Society (AAS) is inviting you — yes, you — to attend its 222nd meeting. The conference, which takes place June 2–6 in Indianapolis, will host more than 500 science-professional attendees, and the number of public guests is up to you and your friends and cousins and co-workers.
For a discounted rate of $50 per day, you can show up at the Indiana Convention Center (100 S. Capitol Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46255) on Monday, June 3, or Tuesday, June 4, and enjoy full access to the conference proceedings. For a Ulysses S. Grant bill or two, you can:
- Attend talks by invited speakers and prize-winners
- Peruse halls of posters detailing the latest research
- Zip into sessions of short talks on topics like exoplanets, variable stars, globular clusters, star formation, and more
- Listen to public policy discussions between astronomers and the National Science Foundation and NASA Headquarters
- Visit ground- and space-based telescope exhibits manned by the scientists who work at each facility
- Stock up on astro-themed gifts
- Dive into a digital planetarium
I will be there the whole time and keep you updated about what’s happening via tweets and blog posts. Expect in-depth investigative reporting about the latest astronomical announcements. I’m most excited about the “Bridging Laboratory and Astrophysics: Molecules,” “A Glimpse of Galaxies at the Dawn of the Universe,” “Outer Limits of the Milky Way,” and “Transients in the Local Universe” sessions. The town hall meetings between government agencies and scientists are always a good way to keep up with the latest funding controversies and take the temperature of astro-politics.
If you decide to attend the conference, find me and say hello! I’m the one with curly hair who will be wearing a press badge.
To check out the schedule, visit http://aas.org/meetings/aas-222nd-meeting. To register, visit http://aas.org/meetings/aas-222nd-meeting-public-registration.
And even if you don’t register for the conference, you can still attend the star party that the AAS will co-host with the Indiana Astronomical Society on June 3 at 9 p.m. (rain/cloud date is June 4). The party will be raging on the Convention Center Plaza on the corner of South Capitol Avenue and West Maryland Street in downtown Indianapolis. Astronomers, both hobbyist and professional, will guide you to Saturn’s rings, which are so perfect that they almost look unreal through a telescope.
For updates about the star party, including those related to weather and logistics, visit the AAS facebook page.