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Celebrate Asteroid Day, 30 June 2018

on 28 June 2018

On 30 June 2018, the world celebrates Asteroid Day, a United Nations recognised international event, organised for raising awareness on the risks of asteroid impacts and the methods to protect the Earth.

The event was established on this date in the memory of the Tunguska, Siberia impact that took place in 1908, and was the largest asteroid impact in the recent history of the Earth.

Events in Romania are announced in the following cities:

In Bucharest, at the Astronomical Institute of the Romanian Academy. At 21:00, the public can see how many asteroids were discovered so far and how an asteroid actually looks like. After 22:00, visitors will see images of five minor planets and a comet, from live observations done with the Institute’s instruments. Details can be found here.

In Iasi, at the county public library „ Gh. Asachi”. A special edition of the astronomy club meeting „Reading the Stars” will take place. Children will learn how to draw and cut out asteroids and comets and more. Details can be found here.

In Galati, at the Astronomical Observatory and Planetarium of the Natural Sciences Museum Complex Galati. A scientific conference on asteroids will start at 21:00, in the Auditorium Hall of the Museum. After the conference, visitors can attend a session of live astronomical observations of asteroids with telescopes and CCD cameras. Regular observations of the Moon and visible planets will also take place. Details can be found here.

For those wishing to attend an event online, you can follow the following broadcasts.

The #AsteroidDayLIVE broadcast on 29 June, starting at 12:00 (13:00, local time in Romania). The live component will be broadcasted from Luxembourg and it will last six hours. The event will be hosted by Prof. Brian Cox, who will have as guests asteroid experts, astronauts, policy makers and celebrities. Among the guests is the only Romanian cosmonaut, Dumitru-Dorin Prunariu. The live component will be followed by replays or relays of other broadcasts for a total duration of 48 hours. The broadcast can be followed on the official event website.

The ESO/ESA broadcast from the new ESO Supernova Planetarium and Visitor Centre in Munich, will start on 30 June, from 13:00 CEST. The programme will highlight some of the most recent activities in the global hunt for risky asteroids, as well as conversations with ESA planetary scientists, asteroid experts and a variety of guest presenters. Fascinating insights into the 2013 Chelyabinsk event will be presented, as well as discussions around the possibility of one day sending humans to asteroids. You can watch live via esa.int/asteroidday.

Earlier this year, from 8 April to 6 May, but also as an activity dedicated to Asteroid Day, ESERO Romania, in conjunction with the International Astronomical Search Collaboration (IASC), hosted the first All-Romania Asteroid Search Campaign. Pan-STARRS image sets were provided to participating schools by the Institute for Astronomy (IfA) at the University of Hawaii. Enthusiastic participation from the schools resulted in 37 preliminary discoveries from Romania.

More information about the event van be found on the official website of Asteroid Day.

Image credit: Asteroid Day / ESA-P.Carril