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IfA Maui Launches Maikalani Community Lecture Series

computer model of a solar flare

IfA solar physicist Ilia Roussev used this computer-generated model of a solar flare to illustrate his Maikalani Community Lecture, "Stormy Weather in Space," on February 15.

Last October, IfA Maui launched a new series of free monthly public talks to share some of the expertise of IfA and visiting scientists with the Maui community. The series is called the UH/IfA Maui Maikalani Community Lectures.

"With the opening of our new building, Maikalani, we have a site suitable for holding public talks, so now the Maui community can enjoy a benefit that previously had mostly been limited to Oahu and Hilo," stated Jeff Kuhn, IfA associate director for Maui.

The initial talk, on asteroid and comet impacts, has been followed by ones on the effect of the Sun on Earth's climate, the interior of stars and extrasolar planets, space "weather," solar eclipses, and the film Hawaiian Starlight: Exploring the Universe from Mauna Kea, by Jean-Charles Cuillandre.

One of the most popular events was the one in January entitled "How to Use the Telescope You Received for Christmas." After the talk, members of the Haleakala Amateur Astronomers group assisted novice telescope owners with their telescopes and gave all attendees a chance to stargaze through HAA telescopes. This talk and stargazing opportunity may be repeated at regular intervals.

The third Friday of the month at 6:30 p.m. is usual time for these talks, but days will vary, so be sure to check our Web site regularly. The next talk, scheduled for May 16, will be "Imaging in the 21st Century."

Maui Technology Education and Outreach Specialist James "J.D." Armstrong is responsible for organizing the series.