Sussex Mobile Community Observatory

We aim to share the wonder of the night sky with everyone in the community, helping to educate and amaze.

Project aim

We aim to share the wonder of the night sky with everyone in the community, helping to educate and amaze.

About the project

Stepping out in to your garden after dark and looking up at the vast array of stars in the sky is inspiring for anyone. Being able to look deeper in to the cosmos and study the amzing sights from planets in our solar system to far out star forming nebulae, is something that many dream of doing. This however has its challenges.

Astronomy doesn't come cheap. Telescopes alone can cost thousands and not everyone has the ability to afford this expense for a hobby. Not only that, space can become a huge factor too. One would not be able to set up a telescope in a small courtyard for instance. This is where we can help.

We will be able to either go to the homes of people who have these limitations or hold regular events in public areas where we will set up our telescope and equipment and allow adults and children to view and image planets and deep sky objects. Not only that, we will be able to educate clients and the public on the solar system and beyond.

A typical evenings viewing both at a private clients house and public event would begin with a brief talk on the equipment and how to use it. Then we will turn our attention to viewing. Starting with the moon, showing some of the features on the observable surface, then talk a little about the formation and cycles of the moon. Next we will look at some of the other planets in our solar system, this varies with time of year, and a little about their history, moons that orbit the planst and theor discoveries. Lastly we will look at deeps sky objects such as nebulae and distant galaxies.

Our future goals are to build relationships with local schools and clubs to hold regular viewing evenings and seminars for education purposes. In the far furture we hope to open a loca observatory and science centre with fun activities, a lecture room and a cafe. This would most likely be close to the Worthing area but will be open to everyone. Schools and Universities will be able to use the facilities as will local Astronomy groups.

The passion that drives the project is a thirst for knowldge of our universe and how it works and most importantly sharing that passion. Astronomy is becoming far more popular with every year and we feel everyone deserves to be a part of it.

We plan to spen the money raised on equipment and marketing. Equipment will consist of a research grade Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope, eyepieces and other accessories, a high quality CCD camera and software. Marketing will be sought through local papers and media and social networking as well as materials such as car stickers etc.

All private viewing nights will come with a suggested donation towards our project. Any images taken and kept will be charged at a small fee. When booked by schools, they will be charged a set fee for the use of the equipment and our time as will local groups and clubs.