Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades Gobierno de Canarias Universidad de La Laguna CSIC Centro de Excelencia Severo Ochoa

Projects and educational initiatives

NIÉPCE

It is an initiative of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) via its Unit for Communication and Scientific Culture (UC3) with the collaboration of the scientific institutions of the Canary Island Observatories, among these the Gran Telescopio CANARIAS (GTC), the largest optical-infrared telescope in the world, of the Museum of Science and the Cosmos (MCC), and the Starlight foundation. It is also patronized by the Severo Ochoa Programme of Excellence of the Secretatiat of State for Research, Development and Innovation of the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitivity. We have also contacted with the French Embassy and with the Niépce Museum of Chalon-sur-Saône, which might finally collaborate.

Objectives: the production and organization of a new set of images obtained with the Canary Island Telescopes, among them the astronomical image of the month from the GTC. With these pictures the aim is to produce itinerant exhibitions (constellations, nebulae, galaxies, the Sun, the Moon…) videos, and audiovisual musical shows, to produce photographic material for children (albums for stickers, puzzles..) for use in the classroom, marketing products (calendars, posters--) and exhibits for museums, to organize talks about the relation between photography and astronomy, with tributes to its key personalities, and introductory courses of astrophotography given by prestigious astrophotographers, as well as competitions, mainly for amateur astronomers and for children.

100 Moons squared: this initiative takes the form of a travelling exhibition (100 Moons squared), consisting of nine  panels of images taken with the UC3's Astrógrafo Sky Treasure Chest (STC). The exhibition comprises ten collections that will visit educational centres throughout the archipelago until 2020. The dimensions of each of the photographs exhibited will be ten times the apparent diameter of Earth's satellite, using the Moon's diameter as a unit of length – hence the project's title '100 Moons squared'. But the 100 Moons squared project is much more than an exhibition. Each panel is complemented by a web page and augmented reality applications. All this will be accompanied by teacher training at science museums and teacher training centres in the Canaries in both the current and future academic years. In this way, as the collection of images journeys from college to college in the islands, duly trained teachers from each centre will be tasked with explaining the images to their pupils.

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