The Department of Physics and Astronomy is fortunate to have three unique facilities for teaching and outreach that also service the astronomy program. These are the Glenlea Astronomical Observatory, the Ewen Campus Observatory and the Lockhart Planetarium. The Glenlea Astronomical Observatory is used primarily for teaching.
The new Ewen Campus Observatory hosted a very successful public outreach event observing the Transit of Venus in 2012; in 2014 we are increasing its use with monthly open observation nights for astronomy students at all levels and the general public. Looking to the future, we would like to partner with local teachers to allow high school students to operate the telescope either remotely or on-site.
The University’s Planetarium also plays a significant role in the Department’s outreach
activities. Support staff offer planetarium shows to several hundred visitors per year from
local schools as well as the general public. A number of other university outreach programs use the planetarium as well, notably: Mini University, Kids to Work, Science Rendezvous, Career Trek, and CANU. During the transit of Venus in 2012, a live video feed was delivered into the planetarium from the observing deck on the roof of University College.