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An special invitation to all San Luis Obispo area residents

to attend the



Honoring San Luis Obispo area students for achievements in astronomical research and engineering development

Text Box: You are also welcome to join us in the Embassy Suites Atrium 
for social hour and dinner before the presentations  (optional) 
5:30 Social Hour - 6:00 Dinner
Click here to make dinner reservations

The Event
Seven teams of area high school and Cuesta College students will present their published astronomical research, while two Cal Poly teams will describe their telescope engineering projects. San Luis Obispo City Mayor Dave Romero, will give the opening welcome.  The public is welcome, at no charge, to hear the student talks and help honor their accomplishments.   
Student Research
Scientific research by high school students is unusual, but last fall—in a unique Cuesta College astronomical research seminar—students investigated double stars circling one another, an exoplanet transiting across the face of a distant star, and the light variations of a tumbling asteroid.  They not only observed locally, but employed remote robotic telescopes.  Several Arroyo Grande High School students received choice college scholarships due in part to their paper in the Journal of Double Star Observations.
                                         Students at Arroyo Grande High School, now published 
                                        scientific researchers, stand around a telescope.  Their 
                                        research paper helped them secure choice college scholarships. 
The incorporation of Arroyo Grande High School students into Cuesta College’s research seminar last fall was so successful that students from other high schools are encouraged to sign up for astronomer Russ Genet’s Physics 193 research seminar this coming fall.  It will be offered at both Cuesta College’s South Campus at Arroyo Grande High School on Tuesdays 5:00-6:00 pm and at Cuesta College’s San Luis Obispo campus on Wednesdays 6:30-7:30 pm.  There are no course prerequisites.  Students learn about science via their personal hands-on exploration of the unknown.  Interested students should visit and email the instructor  Cuesta College registration for high school students opens on June 23rd.  Space is limited, so do not delay.
Student Engineering
In the realm of technical developments, two Cal Poly mechanical engineering student teams designed and built two major telescope structural components—the optical tube assembly and fork.  These student engineering development projects were part of Professor Jim Widmann’s Senior Projects course.  The telescope will be on display during the students’ evening presentations at the Embassy Suites on June 20th. 
                          Show (left) is the telescope foam core for the carbon fiber composite fork, 
                          and (right) the beginnings of the optical tube assembly.  Seven Cal Poly 
                          mechanical engineering students designed and built these portions of a 
                          sizeable research telescope for Cal Poly. 
Other public nights during the conference
These local students are being honored as part of the International Small Telescope & Astronomical Research (STAR) Conference, June19-22, at the Embassy Suites.  Besides the student research night on Friday, June 20th, the public is also welcome to two other free evening presentations.  On Thursday evening, June 19th starting at 7:30 pm, Dr. Arne Henden, Director of the American Association of Variable Star Observers, will suggest why “You should observe variable stars!”  On Sunday evening, June 22nd at 7:30 pm, Cuesta College student Megan Hoffman will read her original, humorous composition, “The Demotion of Pluto.”  This will be followed by a slide show on “Astronomy in South Africa and visiting the South Africa Large Telescope (SALT),” by Richard Berry, who for many years was Senior Editor of Astronomy Magazine.  On both evenings the public is invited to join the astronomers and engineers attending the conference for a social hour and dinner beginning at 5:30 pm (register for dinners at
STAR Conference Students and the general public interested in telescopes or astronomy are welcome to attend the entire STAR Conference.  Friday will describe telescopes and astronomical instrument developments.  Saturday will explore the many scientific research possibilities for smaller telescopes, while Sunday will discuss remotely accessed robotic telescopes and consider how students can learn about science by personally exploring the unknown.  A special student rate of $25 allows local students to attend a major astronomy research and development conference and learn what it might be like to become a scientist or engineer.















































Student Recognition Dinner Reservations

Pay Pal Payment
On line deadline is June 16

$41 per person
(roasted chicken or vegetarian entrée, iced tea & coffee, dessert, tax, & gratuity)

You may reserve as many dinners as you wish - you may enter quantities on the PayPal page.
(Use back button or tab close to return
from PayPal to order both entrees)
Roasted Chicken with garlic fingerling potatoes
Special Vegetarian Entree

Or send a Check or MO made out to
STAR Conference

c/o Dannielle Tassell

705 Sherwood Dr.
Payson, AZ 85541

Mail no later than June 12

Please include your name, email address,
indicate number in party, &
designate chicken or vegetarian

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