Science Center of Iowa Event Calendar

Tuesday August 8, 2017

  • Cafe Scientifique: Solar Eclipse 101
  • 5:30 PM 
  • Location: Science Center of Iowa, 401 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway
    Presenter: Dr. Ethan Siegel, theoretical physicist and founder of "Starts with a Bang" column

    On August 21, 2017, it will be the first time since 1918 that a total solar eclipse has crossed the continental U.S. from coast to coast, and this month’s Café Scientifique is all about this historic event. We’ll explore the significance of the last “Great American Eclipse” of 1918, and discover how we can use the eclipse to test general relativity and more.

    Whether you’re traveling to the path of totality or catching it from your own backyard, join SCI and Dr. Ethan Siegel as we explore the science of a solar eclipse, and learn how to make the most of the main event on Monday, August 21.

    This talk will be held in SCI's Star Theater planetarium, and we will hear from Dr. Siegel via Skype.

    About the presenter:

    Ethan was born in New York, majored in three different things as an undergrad, and got his Ph.D. in theoretical physics. Yes, you indecisive young people, there is hope. After postdoctoral research focusing on dark matter and cosmic structure formation, he became a physics professor and a professional science communicator. His blog, "Starts With A Bang," was voted the No. 1 science blog on the internet by the Institute of Physics, and, separately, by Real Clear Science. His first book, Beyond The Galaxy, is available now and his second, Treknology, about the real-life science behind the technologies envisioned by Star Trek, comes out in October.

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Saturday August 12, 2017

  • Star Party - Perseid Meteor Shower
  • 6:00 PM 
  • Location: Ewing Park, 5300 Indianola Road, Des Moines

    Bring your picnic blanket and join us at Ewing Park to view the Perseid meteor shower! SCI and Des Moines Astronomical Society (DMAS) will have telescopes set up for you to experience this annual cosmic event. The action in the sky doesn’t get started until later, but the fun starts at 6:00 pm with activities in the park such as:

    • Telescope instruction from the Des Moines Astronomical Society (DMAS)
    • Celestial games, crafts and activities
    • A movie shown on a 25” inflatable screen
    • Prize giveaways
      .....and much more!

    The Perseid Meteor Shower has been visible for more than 2,000 years and gets its name from the constellation Perseus, from which it appears to originate. It occurs annually, beginning in late July and lasting through August. During the meteor shower's greatest peak in the pre-dawn hours we could view more than 60 meteors per hour!

    This event is in partnership with City of Des Moines Parks and Recreation and Des Moines Astronomical Society (DMAS).

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