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EAC and Desert Sky Gazers present “The Astrolabe” on Saturday night

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EAC and Desert Sky Gazers present “The Astrolabe” on Saturday night

By Jeanné Clark

THATCHER, AZ—Eastern Arizona College’s Discovery Park Campus, in partnership with the Desert Sky Gazers amateur astronomy club, will present a free, family-friendly lecture and slideshow entitled “The Astrolabe,” on April 11, 2009, at 6:30 p.m. in the Jupiter Room of Discovery Park Campus. Dean Harry Swanson, a member of the Desert Sky Gazers, will present a slide lecture on the history and function of the astrolabe, an ancient instrument used to chart the heavens, as well as determine time, the altitude of any object on the horizon, and the correct latitude.

“We have had an astrolabe that was built in 1608 on loan from the Vatican for several years. It is a beautiful instrument and is exhibited in our ‘Origins of the Galaxy’ gallery,” says Swanson. “Sadly, the Vatican has asked us to return the astrolabe and its sister exhibit, the 1870 Merz telescope, so that they can be used to kick off the Vatican’s celebration of the International Year of Astronomy. This is a perfect time to learn about the astrolabe, its uses, and its parts.”

For more information about this event or the Discovery Park Campus, contact Swanson at (928) 428-6260.