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IAU Astronomy Outreach Newsletter

#1 December 2018

In this newsletter:

0) From the Editors
1) IAU Astronomers Show Exceptional Involvement in Outreach Activities
2) "Under One Sky" Short Story Competition is Launched
3) Celebrate IAU100 Women and Girls in Astronomy Day in Your Country
4) Bring the Above and Beyond Exhibition to your Community
5) News from Armenia
6) News from Japan
7) SYSTEM Sounds: Bringing the Music of the Spheres Down to Earth
8) IDiverSE, Islands Diversity for Science Education

9) Meetings & Global Events
10) IAU Astronomy Outreach Newsletter in other languages

11) Contributions to IAU Outreach Newsletter

0) From the Editors

We are happy to share that the Communicating Astronomy with the Public Conference 2018 in Fukuoka, Japan was awarded by the Fukuoka Sightseeing Convention Bureau with the International Conference Award 2018/2019 for its success in bringing to the city of Fukuoka nearly 450 participants from 53 countries. The award was received by our IAU OAO Supervising Director Hidehiko Agata. 

As 2019 will soon arrive, the number of activities registered for the IAU100 is increasing. The 100 Hours of Astronomy has reached 100 events registered, the "Under One Sky" short story competition launched and the Above and Beyond Exhibition has now customized versions to the needs of the community. And don't forget the Women and Girls in Astronomy Day or to join the Einstein Schools. You can follow all the latest news by subscribing to our various channels.

In this issue, we highlight a study published in the journal Nature Astronomy on astronomers' remarkable drive for public engagement, the IAU Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD) SYSTEM Sounds and the Island of Diversity for Science Education project. 

Last but not least we want to thank our readers and our community at large, for continually sharing their stories with us. Now that we’re drawing closer to the start of 2019, please tell us how you will be celebrating astronomy in 2019.

Wishing you all Happy Reading & Clear Skies!
The IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach Team

1) IAU Astronomers Show Exceptional Involvement in Outreach Activities

A study of outreach activities published in the journal Nature Astronomy has presented the results of a survey gathered from 2587 IAU members. The survey is the largest systematic study of astronomers’ outreach activities. Astronomers were found to show an exceptional internal drive to organise and participate in science communication activities.

Read the full IAU Press Release: 

2) "Under One Sky" Short Story Competition is Launched

We are pleased to invite astronomy students worldwide to take part in the IAU100 “Under One Sky” writing contest. The IAU values the engagement of young scientists in its activities and this competition is aimed at stimulating astronomy students’ creativity and imagination by soliciting short written stories related to the themes 'Under One Sky' and 'Inspiring Stars'. Participants will get a chance to attend the IAU100 Flagship event in Brussels, Belgium. The IAU100 Under One Sky Event will take place at the Palace of the Academies in Brussels (Belgium) on 11-13 April 2019.

Read more:

3) Celebrate IAU100 Women and Girls in Astronomy Day in Your Country

Under the theme "Inclusive Astronomy" the IAU100 celebrations will organise a wide array of global activities and events throughout the year to promote inclusivity, equity, and diversity in astronomy. These events will kick off around 11 February 2019 with the celebration of the IAU100 Women and Girls in Astronomy Day within the framework of the United Nations’ International Day of Women and Girls in Science. This is the perfect opportunity to celebrate girls and women in astronomy by encouraging girls to consider careers in astronomy and by celebrating women astronomers. We encourage everyone to get involved with the Women and Girls in Astronomy Day by running events in your local community.

Read more: 

4) Bring the Above and Beyond Exhibition to your Community

The IAU100 Above and Beyond open-source exhibition features some of the most relevant and astonishing astronomical breakthroughs that have shaped science, technology, and culture throughout the last century. Now you can bring this exhibition to a venue near you in an affordable customised way that suits the needs of your community. The IAU100 Secretariat has just released three versions of the exhibition that can, in an affordable and customised way, support the enjoyment of the exhibition in your community:

Read more: 

5) News from Armenia

Let's feel the Cosmos
The project "Let's feel the Cosmos" won a grant from the Awesome Foundation in Armenia. "Let's feel the Cosmos" aims to introduce children with visual impairments to the Universe and is led by a group of eight students aged 12-13. This is their first project ever. After attending their astronomy club for one year, these children have accumulated enough knowledge to share it with others. Sharing is the best way to understand what they have learned. Also, sharing is the best way to open their hearts and minds, says Armine Patatanyan, the project coordinator.

Find out more about "Let's feel the Cosmos":  
(Our warm thank yous to Armine Patatanyan for sharing their story with us.)


6) News from Japan

"Stella Nova 2018", amateurs and professional astronomers meeting in Japan
There are many amateur astronomers in Japan eager to discover new astronomical objects. On November 17 and 18, NAOJ Mitaka campus held a meeting dedicated to these particular amateur astronomers. The meeting brought together both professional astronomers and amateurs with a total of 90 participants, with interesting lectures and fruitful discussions about topics ranging from comet to novae and supernovae discoveries.

You can find more information here (in Japanese): 
(Our warm thank yous to our National Outreach Coordinator Hitoshi Yamaoka for sharing their story with us.)

7) SYSTEM Sounds: Bringing the Music of the Spheres Down to Earth

SYSTEM Sounds is a science-art project which translates astronomical systems and data into music and sound, and integrates them into high-quality videos with broad public appeal. Following the success of their initial releases on TRAPPIST-1 and Saturn, the team now wishes to extend this project to other systems with a focus on well-known objects and newsworthy astronomical discoveries.

Find out more about the project here:

8) IDiverSE, Islands Diversity for Science Education

IDiverSE aims to provide teachers with the tools, knowledge, and support to lead students in the exploration of innovative methodologies. These include collaboration between different islands of the world, the discovery of important global and local issues and the creation of practical and effective solutions to promote community development and awareness. IDiverSE provides access to activities that will guide teacher and students through fun and interactive simulations and very engaging learning experiences. 

Discover more:

9) Meetings and Global Events 

Here you can find a list of astronomy outreach & education conferences and events around the world. Plan ahead for a very special year for Astronomy, full of interesting events!

a) IAU100: 100 Hours of Astronomy
Date: 10-13 January 2019 
Location: All around the world
More information: 

b) IAU100: Women and Girls in Astronomy Day
Date: 11 February 2019 
Location: All around the world
More information:

c) Global Hands-On Universe (GHOU) Asian Regional Meeting
Date:  6-8 March 2019
Location: Pokhara, Nepal
More information: 

d) 8th International Conference “New Perspectives in Science Education”
Dates: 21 - 22 March 2019
Location: Florence, Italy
More Information: 

e) Yuri’s Night
Date: 12 April 2019
Location: All around the world
More information:

f) European Week of Astronomy and Space Science
Date: 24 – 28 June 2019
Location: Lyon, France
More information:

g) Starmus Festival V: A Giant Leap
Date:  24–29 June 2019
Location: Bern, Switzerland
More information:  

h) Asteroid Day
Date: 30 June 2019
Location: Around the world
More Information:

i) 3rd Workshop on Dissemination and Education of Astronomy (WDEA III)
Dates: 2 July (Solar Eclipse), 4- 5 July 2019
Location: San Juan, Argentina
More information at

j) IAU100: Moon Landing 50th Anniversary - Let's All Observe the Moon! 
Date: 20 July 2019  
Location: All around the world
More information: 

Have we missed something? Then share your astronomy outreach and education international meetings or events with us via

10) IAU Astronomy Outreach Newsletter in other languages

-     Translations into Serbian are available, by Dr Liliana Gracanin from Serbia: ;
-     Translations into Japanese are available, carried out by Akihiko Tomita through the Astronomy Translation Network: If you want to receive the Japanese newsletter translation, please subscribe to the Japanese Amateur Astronomers Association here:, or the Japanese Society for Education and Popularization of Astronomy here:;
-     Translations into Galician are available, by Martin Pawley, Agrupación Astronómica Coruñesa Ío, in Spain here:    
-     Translations into Spanish are available by Emílio Zuniga, the Association of Amateur Astronomers from León, Nicaragua:;
-     Translations into Italian are available by Eleonora Piromalli, AstronomiAmo, from Italy here:

-     Translations into Russian are available by Artem Mokhnaktin, Central Astronomical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Pulkovo. You can find the latest translations of the newsletter here.  
-      Translations into (European) Portuguese are available, carried out by Catarina Leote & João Ferreira through the Astronomy Translation Network (ATN) Portuguese Language Group (the previous issue can be found here). 

If you are interested in translating our newsletter into your language, please let us know via

11) Contributions to the IAU Outreach Newsletter—looking forward to hearing from you in 2018

Here at the IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach, we’re always looking for news about astronomical education and outreach events around the world. Please continue to share your stories with us in 2018! If you are organising large-scale events at a regional or international level, offering astronomy education or communication job positions, have any innovative projects or inspiring stories, looking for professional–amateur collaboration in astronomy, or have created any educational resources, let us know by sending an email to 
You can send us your suggestions until the 4th (for issue #1) and the 17th (for issue #2) day of each month. We are looking forward to hearing from you.


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IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach · 310 South Building, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan · 2-21-1 Osawa · Mitaka, Tokyo 181-8588 · Japan