Minutes from 9/12/2009 Regular Meeting

President Don Ferren called the meeting to order at 7:10 PM.  There were 10 members in attendance, including new members Eric Walker and Paul Deeter.  The weather was not good, solid overcast with likelihood of rain, keeping attendance down.

Upcoming Events:

  • CAAS will be involved with a star party at Pinnacle Mountain State Park this coming weekend at 8 PM.
  • The AOAS will also be holding a star party next Saturday at the Diamond Bar G Ranch, visit their site (www.aoas.org) for details.
  • The RRAC will be hold a “Burger Burn” start party at their property on the weekend of 10/9. Visit their website (www.rrac.org) for details.
  • The Heart of America Star Party will be held on the weekend of 10/16. Visit their web site (www.hoasp.org) for details.
  • CAAS will be involved with a star party at Whoolly Hollow State Park on 11/7 at 7 PM.
  • CAAS may be involved with a Cub Scout outing at Petit Jean Mountain on 10/23 but this has not yet been confirmed.
  • NASA’s Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) is racing toward a double-impact on the moon at 7:30 am EDT on Oct. 9th. Today NASA announced exactly where the crash will take place.  Visit this URL (http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/11sep_lcrosstarget.htm?list1064453) for details.

General Business:

  • The board members in attendance approved a motion to let Jim Fisher move forward with a letter to Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola urging the use of good dark sky friendly lighting at the site of a proposed soccer field on highway 300 near Pinnacle Mountain State Park.
  • Jim Fisher made a motion that CAAS make former Pinnacle M0untain State Park Interpreter James Mullins an honorary lifetime member of CAAS for all of the work he has done over the last 22 years promoting astronomy.  In addition, it was proposed that we have a plaque made to this effect.  The motion was approved and Bill Engberg offered to look into getting the plaque.


Bill Engberg gave a demonstration of a technique he has developed to use a non-motorized dobsonian telescope to track satellites and similar objects across the sky and described how he observed a recent Space Shuttle fly over using the technique.  He then talked about some books he has recently acquired including Astronomy Hacks and The Dobsonian Telescope.

The meeting let out at about 8:40 and since it had started raining at that time, no observing followed.